Installing a kegerator under the counter is a popular choice for those who are seeking a sleek and space-efficient solution for dispensing draft beer in their homes or commercial spaces. This installation method optimises available space and contributes to a polished and integrated design, seamlessly blending the kegerator with the surrounding cabinetry and countertops.
Whether setting up a home bar or enhancing the functionality of your kitchen, the under-counter installation offers convenience, improved ventilation, and a customized look tailored to your preferences.
In this guide, we will walk through the step-by-step process of installing a kegerator under the counter, providing a comprehensive overview to help you achieve a professional and aesthetically pleasing setup.
Why You Need to Install Kegerator Under Counter
Installing a kegerator under the counter can offer several benefits, making it a popular choice for those who want a clean and integrated look in their home bar or kitchen. Here are some reasons why people choose to install kegerators under the counter:
- Space Efficiency:
Installing a kegerator under the counter helps save space, especially in areas where every square inch matters. It eliminates the need for a freestanding unit, allowing for a more streamlined and organized appearance.
- Aesthetic Appeal:
A built-in kegerator provides a sleek and cohesive look in your kitchen or bar area. It seamlessly integrates with the surrounding cabinetry and countertops, creating a more polished and professional appearance.
- Enhanced Ventilation:
Under-counter installations often provide better ventilation options for the kegerator. Proper airflow is important for the efficient operation of the cooling system. By integrating the kegerator under the counter, you can ensure that it receives adequate ventilation, helping maintain optimal temperature conditions for the beer.
- Safety and Stability:
Securing the kegerator under the counter ensures stability during use. This is important to prevent accidental tipping or movement, especially in high-traffic areas.
- Temperature Control:
Placing the kegerator under the counter in a controlled indoor environment helps maintain a more consistent temperature, which is essential for keeping the beer at the ideal serving temperature.
- Reduced Noise and Visibility:
Installing the kegerator under the counter can reduce noise levels, as it may be partially or fully concealed by cabinetry. This is beneficial in open-concept living spaces where minimizing appliance noise is desirable.
Ultimately, the decision to install a kegerator under the counter depends on individual preferences, available space, and the overall design goals for the kitchen or bar area.
How to Install Kegerator Under Counter
Installing a kegerator under the counter involves several steps. Here’s a general guide, but keep in mind that specific instructions may vary depending on the brand and model of your kegerator. Always refer to the manufacturer’s instructions for the most accurate guidance.
Materials and Tools Needed:
- Kegerator: Purchase a kegerator that is suitable for under-counter installation. Make sure it fits the dimensions of the space and has the necessary features for built-in use.
- Drill and Hole Saw: To create holes for the beer and CO2 lines.
- Screws: To secure the kegerator in place.
- Level: To ensure that the kegerator is installed evenly.
- Wrenches and Screwdrivers: To tighten and secure connections.
Installation Process Step-by-step:
Step 1: Choose the Location:
Select a suitable location under the counter with enough ventilation space for the kegerator.
Step 2: Prepare the Space:
Clear out any obstructions or items in the chosen location.
Step 3: Install Ventilation:
Ensure that the kegerator has proper ventilation to dissipate heat. Some kegerators have a front vent, while others may have a rear vent. Follow the manufacturer’s recommendations.
Step 4: Create Access Holes:
Use a drill and hole saw to create holes for the beer lines and CO2 lines. These holes should be large enough for the lines to pass through without being pinched or kinked.
Step 5: Slide in the Kegerator:
Carefully slide the kegerator into the space under the counter. Make sure it is level.
Step 6: Connect Beer Lines:
Connect the beer lines from the keg to the tap on the countertop. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for proper connection.
Step 7: Connect CO2 Lines:
Connect the CO2 tank to the kegerator. Make sure to follow the instructions to set the correct pressure.
Step 8: Secure the Kegerator:
Use screws to secure the kegerator in place. This prevents it from shifting or moving during use.
Step 9: Test the System:
Before closing up the space, test the kegerator to ensure that the beer is dispensing properly and the CO2 system is functioning as expected.
Step 1: Finish Up:
Once everything is tested and working correctly, close up any access panels and make the installation neat and tidy.
Always refer to the specific instructions of the kegerator manufacturer, as installation steps can vary. If you are unsure about any aspect of the installation, it’s recommended to consult with a professional or contact the manufacturer for assistance.
How Do You Seal the Gap Between Kegerator and Countertop?
Sealing the gap between the kegerator and countertop is important for aesthetic reasons and to prevent debris or spills from getting into the space. Here are a few methods to seal the gap:
- Silicone Caulk:
Use a clear or color-matching silicone caulk to seal the gap. Clean the area thoroughly, apply the caulk along the edges, and use a caulk smoothing tool or your finger to create a neat, smooth seal. Silicone is a good choice because it provides a watertight and flexible seal.
- Foam Tape or Weather Stripping:
Apply foam tape or weather stripping to the edges of the kegerator where it meets the countertop. This can help seal the gap and also provide some insulation. Make sure the tape or stripping is clean and free of debris before applying.
- Vinyl or Rubber Edge Trim:
Install a vinyl or rubber edge trim along the perimeter of the kegerator where it meets the countertop. These trims come in various shapes and sizes and can be easily cut to fit. They provide a durable and clean finish.
- Custom-Made Trim or Molding:
If you have experience in woodworking, you can create a custom trim or molding to fit the specific gap between the kegerator and the countertop. This allows you to match the existing design or decor of your space.
- Furniture Gap Filler:
Consider using a furniture gap filler or cover strip designed for concealing gaps between furniture pieces. These are often flexible and can be cut to the desired length.
Installation Process Step-by-step:
Step 1: Clean the Area:
Ensure that the gap and surrounding surfaces are clean and free of debris.
Step 2: Choose the Sealing Material:
Select the sealing material that best suits your needs, whether it’s silicone caulk, foam tape, edge trim, or a custom-made solution.
Step 3: Measure and Cut:
If necessary, measure the length of the gap and cut the sealing material to fit.
Step 4: Apply the Sealant:
Apply silicone caulk, foam tape, or edge trim along the gap. Follow the specific instructions for the chosen material.
Step 5: Smooth and Shape:
If using silicone caulk, use a caulk smoothing tool or your finger to create a smooth and even seal. For other materials, ensure they are securely in place.
Step 6: Let It Dry or Set:
Allow silicone caulk to dry according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Other materials may not require drying time.
Step 7: Final Inspection:
Once the seal is in place, visually inspect the area to ensure a clean and effective seal. Clean up any excess material.
Choose the method that suits the design of your kitchen or bar area. Always follow the instructions provided with the sealing material for the best results.
Whether you’re looking to maximize space in a small kitchen or create a sophisticated home bar, installing a kegerator under the counter offers a practical and stylish solution for beer enthusiasts and homeowners alike. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions and, if needed, consult with experts to have a safe and successful installation process.
Frequently Asked Questions:
- How do I clean and maintain the kegerator?
Regularly clean the beer lines and keg coupler using a cleaning solution. Keep the kegerator clean and free from spills or debris.
- How do I troubleshoot common issues with a kegerator?
If you’re experiencing issues such as foamy beer or a warm keg, check for proper CO2 pressure, clean beer lines, and ensure the kegerator is set to the correct temperature.
- How do I measure the space for the kegerator?
Measure the width, depth, and height of the space where you want to install the kegerator. Make sure to leave enough room for ventilation and access to the keg.