If you’re looking to replace your old cooker, a new freestanding option that slots into an existing space in your kitchen can be an easy and cost-effective solution.
The majority of freestanding cookers available to buy in the UK are roughly 60 cm wide, which is the same width as the majority of standard kitchen units. However, slimline 50 cm and 55 cm wide models are also available.
All cookers are approximately the same height (80 cm) and depth (60-65 cm) so that they will line up with your worktops and fit a standard kitchen.
However, since many fitted kitchens only have a standard 60 cm gap between units. For that reason, many people wonder, will a 60 cm cooker fit in a 60 cm gap?
The quick answer is: Yes, a 60 cm cooker should fit in a 60 cm gap, because 60 cm cookers are usually actually slightly narrower than 60 cm.
Buying a 55 cm model may sound like a good option, but if the gaps between your kitchen units and the cooker are too big, food and other items can fall down the gaps either side of the appliance, and larger gaps may also spoil the overall appearance of your fitted kitchen.
A 60 cm cooker should have a closer, neater fit, but what if the gap is too small? And how much space do you need around a cooker for safety reasons or if the appliance needs to be removed easily for maintenance? In this article, we’ll answer these questions.
Are 60 cm cookers really 60 cm?
Fitting a 60 cm cooker into a 60 cm gap sounds like a tight squeeze, but it turns out that most 60 cm cookers are actually a little smaller, with the intention of the appliance fitting perfectly into the gap between standard kitchen units.
For example, Hotpoint state in their manual for installing 60 cm slot-in cookers that:
“The cooker is designed to fit between kitchen cabinets spaced 600mm* apart. The space either side need only be sufficient to allow withdrawal of the cooker for servicing and cleaning”
*600 mm = 60 cm
This should be the same for 60cm cookers from different brands, and manuals for most appliances are available online so you can always double check before you buy.
How much gap is required either side of a cooker?
A 60 cm cooker should fit inside a 60 cm gap, but you may still be concerned about whether there are big enough gaps on either side of the appliance.
With ovens reaching extremely high temperatures, safety is of course a concern. However, unless the instructions for a new cooker require a specific size gap to the sides of the appliance there shouldn’t be a problem. The majority of cookers have a gap behind or fans which blow air out of the front, and have panels on the sides with no vents.
The majority of modern kitchen units are also made from heat-resistant chipboard and shouldn’t be affected by the heat, although some discolouration may occur over time.
There are of course other safety concerns when fitting an oven, such as the location of nearby power sockets, so always read the manufacturer’s instructions carefully.
As mentioned earlier, 60 cm cookers are normally a little smaller than 60 cm. This means that the gap between the cooker and the kitchen cabinets should be adequate for both safety and for when you need to remove the appliance for cleaning and maintenance.
A 60 cm cooker will usually fit in a standard 60 cm gap between units in your kitchen. However, it’s still a good idea to carefully measure the gap and check the manufacturer’s instructions before buying and fitting a new cooker.
If in doubt, ask the advice of a professional and if you’re fitting an electric cooker yourself always make sure that you follow any safety guidelines. All gas cookers should always be installed by a Gas Safe registered engineer.