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Counter Depth VS Standard Depth: Choosing the Right Refrigerator for Your Kitchen

by Lucille Watson

woman reaching into a fridge

Your fridge is an essential part of your home. Deciding which appliances to choose for a kitchen remodel or if you’re in need of something new is a big decision. And you want to make sure to select a fridge that fits your needs and lifestyle well.

So, what is the difference between a counter-depth and standard depth refrigerator? The main variation is dimensions. We’ll unpack further how to know which refrigerator is best for you and what each choice brings to the table. But, whichever you choose, the right refrigerator will impact your life in many positive ways.

At a Glance:

Counter-Depth vs. Standard Depth Refrigerators

Why Choose a Counter Depth Refrigerator?

Our Top Counter Depth Fridge Picks

Why Choose a Standard Depth Refrigerator?

Our Top Standard Depth Fridge Picks

Types of Refrigerators

Why Trust Us?

Counter-Depth vs Standard Depth Fridges

When searching through our fridge catalog, you’ll find two main types of freestanding refrigerator choices: the counter depth fridge or the standard-depth fridge. A counter depth refrigerator is shallower than other types of fridges (between 25-30 inches), and typically matches the depth of your cabinets and countertops. While a standard depth fridge (also known as a full-sized fridge) has a larger capacity and will jut out a few inches from your other appliances.

Why would you choose one over the other? If your home is smaller in size, or you have a tight kitchen, a counter-depth fridge may be an ideal option. Smaller dimensions and shorter doors mean you’ll have more room to move about your kitchen and have more floor space. They also are flush with your cabinets and easily customizable.

If your home doesn’t feature a smaller cooking area, a full-sized fridge gives you ample space and room to store all your groceries without the worry of overstocking. The downside is you may run into your standard depth fridge a time or two while moving about your kitchen.

We’ll give you the lowdown on benefits and features you can take advantage of for each product below.

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Counter Depth Refrigerators

A counter-depth refrigerator provides your kitchen with a seamless configuration between cabinetries and countertops. If you’re looking to remodel your kitchen, a counter-depth fridge will sit flush between your storage and countertops, giving you a customized and clean look.

How deep is a counter-depth refrigerator? The standard depth dimensions of this fridge fall between 24 to 30 inches and are typically taller in height and wider. These dimensions give you enough room to install a counter-depth refrigerator into a kitchen that may be skinnier. Since they’re wider than their competitors, standard depth fridges, you’ll find that they’re a bit more space-efficient for you to stuff all your choice farmer markets picks to their fullest capacity.

Benefits of a Counter Depth Fridge

  • Customizable: A counter depth refrigerator gives your kitchen a flushed configuration between cabinetry, countertops, and the appliance. An excellent choice for remodeling projects.
  • Wider and Taller: Its dimensions are larger than a standard-depth fridge. This choice will give you more room to store your favorite foods and meals.
  • Shallower Depth: Its shallow depth increases the ability to quickly find what you’re looking for without losing your Brussel sprouts in the back corner.
  • Budget: $500 to $14,000
  • Counter-Depth Dimensions: 24 to 30 inches in depth

Our Top Counter Depth Picks

Our experts at East Coast Appliance have chosen the top counter-depth refrigerator picks for you.

French Door Counter Depth: Frigidaire® 17.4 Cu. Ft. Brushed Steel Counter-Depth French Door Refrigerator (FRQG1721AV)

French door refrigerators are arguably the most popular type of fridge on the appliance market. With the capacity to fit all your family’s favorite snacks, this pick will give you flexible organizational systems with adjustable glass shelves and a fridge that sits flush with your kitchen. Gallon-sized refrigerator bins allow multiple milk jugs to stay fresh and ready for any cereal craving. This pick is perfect for a couple or a smaller family needing a little extra counter space room for prepping dinner.

counter depth French door fridge

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  • Gallon-sized bins for storage
  • Adjustable glass shelves
  • Depth: 29.13 inches

Side by Side Counter Depth: GE® 21.8 Cu. Ft. Stainless Steel Counter Depth Side-By-Side Refrigerator (GZS22IYNFS)

This GE side-by-side counter depth fridge allows you to access your frozen food alongside your fresh produce. Adjustable clear bins provide you with less time searching your fridge for the cream cheese and give you enough space to store milk and juice jugs. The freezer space features a “sweet spot” shelf that allows you to store your favorite ice cream flavors in the coldest location in the freezer. If you have picky water drinkers, utilize the advanced water filtration system that reduces unnecessary pharmaceuticals from each glass.

Stainless steel counter depth French door refrigerator

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  • Ice cream “sweet spot” in freezer
  • Advanced water filtration system
  • Color-match dispenser for seamless configuration
  • Depth: 24 inches

Learn More About GE Refrigerators

ENERGY STAR Counter Depth: Frigidaire Professional® 21.7 Cu. Ft. Stainless Steel Counter Depth French Door Refrigerator (PRMC2285AF)

Our last counter-depth fridge choice comes with features that you won’t want to pass. On top of featuring a professional-grade design that will give your kitchen a remodeled look without spending all that cash, this stainless steel fridge has auto humidity crisper drawers to reduce spoilage, expandable door bins for extra space, and a SnackZone. On top of a flush design, maximize your energy levels and save money with this certified ENERGY STAR appliance.

 splurge Frigidaire French door counter fridge

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  • ENERGY STAR certified
  • SnackZone for kids
  • Custom-Flex temperature drawer
  • Depth: 24.5 inches

Standard Depth Refrigerators

A standard or full-sized refrigerator gives you the ability to stack your shelves and bins full of your favorite foods without the worry of running out of space. If you have a larger family or really hungry kids, a standard depth fridge may be your best option. Although it doesn’t sit flush next to countertops and may stick out from your cabinetry, this appliance is a great choice for heftier eaters and larger kitchens.

What are standard depth fridge dimensions? This appliance runs between 31 to 36 inches in depth, making it the larger option between counter depth refrigerators vs standard depth refrigerators. These dimensions give you plenty of room to fill your fridge to capacity with delicious snacks and homemade meals, all while providing you with a traditional and familiar layout.

Benefits of a Standard Depth Fridge

  • Traditional Layout: You’ll find these fridges have a familiar design, giving your kitchen that classic aesthetic.
  • Deeper Depth: A larger dimension from front to back provides you with more space to organize and fill your fridge.
  • Large Capacity: Because this standard refrigerator depth gives you more space, culinary enthusiasts and active families have more opportunities to optimize space and ingredients in both the fridge and freezer.
  • Budget: $500 to $19,000
  • Standard Depth Dimensions: 31 to 36 inches in depth

Our Top Standard Depth Picks

Our experts at East Coast Appliance have chosen the top standard depth refrigerator picks for you.

French Door Standard Depth: Samsung 27.0 Cu. Ft. Fingerprint Resistant Stainless Steel 3-Door French Door Refrigerator (RF27T5201SR)

More capacity brings more flexibility to discover fresh recipes and fewer trips to the grocery store. Not only will the sleek design and minimal dispenser bring modern aesthetics to your kitchen, but the 27 cubic feet of capacity and smudge-free finish will also provide you with a seamless culinary experience. Store your groceries in the spill-proof drawers and adjustable shelves for easy access. Also, know when a door has been left open by a snack thief with a helpful door alarm.

Samsung standard French door fridge

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  • EZ-Open handles
  • Water filter indicator
  • Spill-proof drawers and shelves
  • Depth: 35.63 inches

Side by Side Standard Depth: Frigidaire® 25.6 Cu. Ft. Stainless Steel Side-by-Side Refrigerator (FRSS2623AS)

Unload groceries quicker with a side-by-side full capacity fridge. This appliance gives you an EvenTemp Cooling System, so you never have to worry about freezer-burn on your popsicles or your tomatoes spoiling too fast. The fresh storage crispers keep all your fruits and veggies fresher for longer, meaning fewer trips to the store to pick up an extra bag of grapes. This large-capacity fridge gives you nearly 26 cubic feet of space to organize and never lose your produce.

standard Frigidaire side by side fridge

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  • EvenTemp Cooling System
  • Large Capacity
  • PurePour Water Filter
  • Depth: 32.5 inches

Read Our Frigidaire Refrigerator Review

Smart Technology Standard Depth: LG 29.7 Cu. Ft. PrintProof™ Stainless Steel French Door Refrigerator (LRFDS3016S)

Take just one trip to the grocery with this 29.7-cubic-foot max capacity fridge. Save time and easily stock up on weekly favorites by storing food in the Door-in-Door design. This feature gives you space to move and adjust smooth gliding racks so you can optimize and quickly find your drinks and snacks. On top of the dual-ice maker that offers you cubed and crushed choices, this fridge makes life easier with ThinQ technology. Anticipate temperature drops, ice needs, and energy optimization options with the ThinQ app.

LG standard French door fridge

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  • ThinQ technology
  • Dual Ice Maker with Craft Ice
  •  Adjustable bins with Door-in-Door design
  • Depth: 34.25 inches

Explore Our LG Refrigerator Review

What Type of Fridge is Best for Me?

There are quite a few different refrigerator models. Depending on your lifestyle, household size, and budget will impact which style of fridge is best for you.

French Door Fridges

A French door refrigerator is one of the most popular styles. Easy access to both sides of shelving and drawers gives users accessibility they may not find with other designs. Convenience and capacity are at the forefront of these models providing you with space to store anything from frozen pizzas to your favorite pint of ice cream.

Side-by-Side Fridges

A side by side refrigerator has similar features to a French door fridge, but the main difference is one door is slightly narrower than the other and is the length of the entire appliance. This choice will eliminate crouching down or bending over to pull out your favorite freezer snacks.

Top Freezer Fridges

The top freezer refrigerator option also eliminates bending over to reach down into your freezer. Optimal food storage space and function are provided and allows for smaller kitchen spaces to be optimized.

Bottom Freezer Fridges

Bottom freezer refrigerators feature the same optimal space storage as top fridges, except the freezer space is opposite. Easily pull out the bottom drawer to quickly grab some ice and take advantage of extra bins and shelving.

Built-In Fridges

Taller in stature, built-in refrigerators are designed to sit completely flush with your cabinetry and countertops. Easily customize this appliance option to give your kitchen a seamless, flushed style.

Column Fridges

Column refrigerators are sleek and narrow in design and typically come panel-ready, meaning they’re optimal for customization.

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In a Nutshell

As we’ve said, there are numerous designs to choose from when it comes to the best refrigerator for you. The counter depth vs standard depth debate depends on the size of your kitchen and the needs of your family. If you’re still asking yourself, ‘What is the standard depth of a refrigerator?’ it falls between 31 to 36 inches.  

Why Trust East Coast Appliance?

Locally owned and operated since 1988, East Coast Appliance is the largest independent appliance dealer in Virginia. We sell it ALL — from new name-brand appliances to scratch-and-dent appliances to our very own refurbished appliances. Aside from our huge selection of every major brand and everyday low prices, what sets us apart from our competitors is that we service what we sell and that we are locally owned and operated with factory-trained associates. And if you’re a local, great news: East Coast Appliance is committed to providing the absolute lowest prices on the same available brand and model — simply bring in the ad of the local retail competitor while the lower price is in effect and you'll receive your price match.

Shop Refrigerators at East Coast

There is a reason we are dubbed “The Discount King” — for unbeatable deals in Virginia, shop refrigerators online at East Coast Appliance. Our friendly associates are always happy to help you settle the debate between counter depth vs standard depth fridges, whether you call us or use our online chat feature. Better yet, stop by one of our showrooms to see why we are the best appliance store in Virginia. Visit us today!

Learn More: 6 Best Refrigerators under $1,500