Sunday, August 12, 2012

Does the Refrigerator need a Plinth?

Do you need to create a plinth for the refrigerator? That was one of the "minor" points my ID was trying to play down and convince me to avoid the plinth. His argument was that without the plinth, it was easier to roll out the fridge to clean up the dust behind.

As the end-user, my concern was to address the case when the kitchen floor gets flooded from the washing machine malfunction, it would damage the fridge's electrical circuits. Read about front load washing machines having this risk here. "But that is a 1:1000 chance of happening", he argued back.  I figured he was trying to find the easy way out, as without the plinth, the tiler will have a much easier time. Click here to read the reasoning. Anyway, to cut the long story short, I won the debate, which I now am glad having doing so. To protect the washing machine from the flood, we have also placed the rubber blocks to raise it above the floor.

Fridge on a plinth, adjacent to stacked drier on Washing machine which is on blocks.
Washing Machine on blocks
After moving for 2 and a half years, the "1:1000" incident happened... the kitchen floor was flooded when the water discharge tube from the washing machine was accidentally pulled out of the house outlet pipe.

The fridge on the plinth and washing machine on blocks were safe from the flooding. The only thing to handle was cleaning up the flood. Snapped some photos while moving the washing machine and drier out to clean up the wet floor. All these effort to prevent permanent damage to the fridge and washing machine.... I'd say it is worth it.

1. Shifted out the drier and washing machine
2.  Create a temporary extension plinth to roll out the fridge (using newspapers and plywood shelf board)
Note the concrete tiled plinth on the left. Fridge has a white wheel and black adjustable leg. 

3. Roll out the fridge to access the kitchen outlet.

 4. Clean up the kitchen outlet
Kitchen water outlet was located under the fridge. All the flood water was discharged through this outlet. Also note the back of the fridge (on the right) has a lot of electrical works, vulnerable to flooding.

In conclusion, while making design decisions for your renovation, do consider some worst case situations, especially if they can cause some form of permanent damage to your assets.

Also see kitchen layout


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