Replacement of Integrated Fridge and Freezer Hinges
The type of hinge used by manufacturers for integrated fridge and freezers generally fall into two types, option 1 that opens the fridge or freezer door when the outer cupboard door is opened, and option 2 that allows the outer cupboard door to slide over the fridge or freezer door when the door is opened.
Obviously the hinge set up is completely different for the stand alone appliances in your kitchen, such as fridges, freezers or dual appliances.
Replacing damaged hinges
Neither type of hinge is too problematic to replace, but one is slightly more time-consuming and fiddly than the other. As usual, the main concern is to ensure you source the correct spares for your kitchen units, plus the make and model of your fridge or freezer. You may be interested to know that many of the integrated cabinets and hinges are made by the same manufacturer. These units are then purchased by various kitchen companies who just rebrand them. This obviously reduces the costs considerably, and also makes obtaining spare parts much easier.
Some kitchen companies do manufacture their own integrated units and hinges, but this will make replacement parts more expensive.
When replacing hinges it is always better to replace a pair rather than just the broken hinge. This helps with the rebalancing of the door but also saves you the trouble of replacing the other hinge when it breaks a short time after, as it probably will.
Option 1 Hinge
For Option 1 hinge, the whole hinge allows the door to open outward, giving the cupboard door the clearance that lets the door open fully. Due to the substantial weight these hinges carry, taking into account filling the fridge door itself with milk, juice etc. they are therefore liable to failure.
The hardest part of replacing the hinge is getting everything to line up again afterwards. This can be achieved by making adjustments to the hinge until everything is back in balance. Once you get close to this, try to just tweak the hinge in tiny increments and you will achieve your end goal. Patience is definitely a virtue is definitely a good thing.
Option 2 Hinge
You will be pleased to know the Option 2 slider hinge are very easy to replace. You just need the correct screwdriver and you’re ready to go – you can complete the entire job in a few minutes.
For both of the above options, the most important thing is to get the correct parts for your specific job. Make and model numbers are very important, but please contact a reputable retailer, either in store or on line, and you should receive the help you need if you are not sure.
Please be careful as there are some cheap copies on the market, which are generally not going to last for very long, and will probably only be slightly cheaper than the genuine hinges.
However, if you don’t feel confident to carry out this work yourself, you can always contact a professional in your area who will be glad to help you. Apart from the actual spare parts, the job should not take too long to complete and should, therefore, not be too expensive. Don’t forget to shop around and try to avoid an engineer who insists on a call out fee.