Choosing the right refrigerator for your kitchen can be a challenge. Two popular options are counter depth and standard refrigerators.

Each has its benefits and drawbacks. In this blog, we’ll compare these two types of refrigerators in detail. By the end, you’ll know which one suits your needs best.

Counter Depth Refrigerator vs. Standard

Quick Comparison

FeatureCounter Depth RefrigeratorStandard Refrigerator
Size and CapacityShallower, less storage capacityDeeper, more storage capacity
Aesthetics and DesignSleek, flush with countersSticks out beyond counters
Space RequirementsRequires less kitchen spaceRequires more kitchen space
PriceGenerally more expensiveGenerally less expensive
Energy EfficiencyOften more energy-efficientVaries, usually similar efficiency
InstallationEasier to install in tight spacesRequires more clearance
AccessibilityEasier to reach itemsMore storage but items can be harder to access
Variety and OptionsFewer models and sizes availableWide range of models and sizes

Size and Capacity

Counter Depth Refrigerator

Counter depth refrigerators are shallower than standard models. They typically measure 24 to 30 inches deep, including the doors.

This gives them a more streamlined look, but it also means they have less storage capacity. They are ideal for smaller households or those who don’t need a lot of fridge space.

Standard Refrigerator

Standard refrigerators are deeper, usually measuring 30 to 36 inches deep. This gives them a larger storage capacity, making them ideal for larger families or those who need more space for groceries.

However, they stick out beyond the kitchen counters, which can be a drawback in smaller kitchens.

Aesthetics and Design

Counter Depth Refrigerator

Counter depth refrigerators are designed to be flush with your kitchen counters and cabinets.

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This gives your kitchen a sleek, modern look. They are perfect for those who prioritize aesthetics and want a seamless kitchen design.

Standard Refrigerator

Standard refrigerators extend beyond the counter depth. While this might not be as visually appealing, it offers more storage space.

They come in a wide variety of styles, finishes, and designs, allowing you to choose one that fits your kitchen decor.

Space Requirements

Counter Depth Refrigerator

Counter depth refrigerators require less kitchen space. They are ideal for smaller kitchens or for those who want a more open and uncluttered look.

Their shallower depth means they don’t stick out into the walking space, making the kitchen feel more spacious.

Standard Refrigerator

Standard refrigerators take up more space because they are deeper. They are better suited for larger kitchens where space is not an issue. The extra depth can make the kitchen feel more cramped if space is tight.


Counter Depth Refrigerator

Counter depth refrigerators are generally more expensive. The cost is higher due to the design and engineering required to make them shallower without compromising too much on storage. They are considered a premium option.

Standard Refrigerator

Standard refrigerators are usually less expensive. They offer more storage space for the price, making them a cost-effective choice for those who need a lot of refrigerator space without breaking the bank.

Energy Efficiency

Counter Depth Refrigerator

Counter depth refrigerators are often more energy-efficient. Their smaller size means they require less energy to cool. Many modern counter depth models come with advanced energy-saving features.

Standard Refrigerator

Standard refrigerators can also be energy-efficient, but their larger size means they may use more energy overall. It’s essential to check the energy rating of individual models. Some standard refrigerators come with energy-saving features, but their efficiency varies.

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Counter Depth Refrigerator

Counter depth refrigerators are easier to install in tight spaces. Their shallow depth makes them more flexible in terms of placement. They fit seamlessly into smaller kitchens without sticking out.

Standard Refrigerator

Standard refrigerators require more clearance due to their depth. This can make installation more challenging, especially in smaller kitchens. You need to ensure there is enough space for the doors to open fully without obstruction.


Counter Depth Refrigerator

Counter depth refrigerators offer easier access to items. Because they are shallower, items at the back are more reachable. This can make it easier to organize and find food, reducing the risk of forgotten items going bad.

Standard Refrigerator

Standard refrigerators offer more storage, but items can be harder to access, especially those at the back. The deeper shelves can make it challenging to reach everything without moving other items around.

Variety and Options

Counter Depth Refrigerator

There are fewer models and sizes available for counter depth refrigerators. This can limit your choices. However, the available options are often high-end and feature-rich.

Standard Refrigerator

Standard refrigerators come in a wide range of models, sizes, and styles. This gives you more options to choose from, allowing you to find a model that fits your needs and budget perfectly.


What is the main difference between counter depth and standard refrigerators?

The main difference is depth. Counter depth refrigerators are shallower and flush with your counters, while standard refrigerators are deeper and stick out beyond the counters.

Are counter depth refrigerators more expensive?

Yes, counter depth refrigerators are generally more expensive due to their design and engineering.

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Do standard refrigerators offer more storage space?

Yes, standard refrigerators typically offer more storage capacity because they are deeper.

Which type of refrigerator is more energy-efficient?

Counter depth refrigerators are often more energy-efficient due to their smaller size, but it depends on the specific model.

Is it easier to install a counter depth refrigerator?

Yes, counter depth refrigerators are easier to install in tight spaces due to their shallower depth.


Both counter depth and standard refrigerators have their pros and cons. Counter depth refrigerators offer a sleek look and save space but come with a higher price tag and less storage capacity. Standard refrigerators provide more storage and are generally less expensive but take up more space and may not look as integrated in the kitchen.

Your choice depends on your kitchen size, budget, storage needs, and aesthetic preferences. Understanding the differences will help you make the best decision for your home.

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