Steps In Kitchen Remodel – Part B – Kitchen Design Layout

May 09, 2018

This post is following on from our previous one “Steps In Kitchen Remodel – Part A” That post we gave 7 tips to think about even before you start designing and thinking about the layout of your kitchen.

It answers a question a lot of people ask I need a new kitchen where do I start”, and if you have read it, you’re in a good place to start thinking about the layout of your new room. If you’ve not read our previous post we’d suggest you take time to read it before you go any further.​

This post is all about kitchen design layout. We hope it will give you some tips and an insight into the way that designers might think when drawing up your plans. Although there are some legal restrictions, none of this is complex and quite basic really, but most of these are things we take for granted and don’t really think about much so they are really healthy to keep in mind.


TOP TIP 1: Don’t fragment your worktop

Ideally when designing the worktop layout, it would be preferable to maintain a safe loading area either side of the sink, either side of the hob/oven and preferably have a good prep area as well. In reality wherever you place the sink and hob/oven your worktop size will be exactly the same so why is this so important? 

It’s all to do with the preparation area. Your kitchen is the one true working room in your home and you will need space to work so think carefully not only about how much prep area you need but also what worktop standing appliances you are likely to have. Microwaves, kettles, toasters and so on, all take up room and eat into your available worktop space so bear these in mind when thinking on worktop layout.

TOP TIP 2: Think carefully about the position of your hob

The position of the hob is really important. There are legal restrictions on where you can place a gas hob and your designer should make you aware of these. The two key points to remember with a gas hob is that they cannot be in front of a window and must be a minimum of 300mm away from any combustible surface, so you cannot have them tight up to a tower unit for example and, they must be a minimum of 300mm away from any draught source.


Even with ceramic or induction hobs, we would still recommend a minimum of 300mm away from any tower unit. Although this is not a legal restriction on a health and safety front, allow enough space so the handles can be moved away from the heat source and do not hang over the hob at any point. Even on electric hobs the handles will get hot if they hang over the appliance and you could scald yourself.


TOP TIP 3: Think carefully about the position of your extractor

Not everyone has or uses an extractor fan and may use a window or door for ventilation. Remember this though, if you have a window or door open it will blow the air and smells into the room and not suck them out. 

To maintain air circulation you must have two apertures open at any time to maintain a circular movement of air. Most people will not do this so we’d always recommend an extractor fan.

There are two types of air extraction systems or fans available today, ducted and recirculating. Ducted will have a vent system that will extract all the fumes to the outside of the building and recirculating systems have a filter system that cleans the air and recirculates the clean air back into the room. Recirculating or filter fans can be placed anywhere in the room but you will need to consider how you will get the flue to an exterior wall and conceal it if you are opting for a ducted system.

TOP TIP 3: Think carefully about positioning of built in wet appliances

Many people consider built in washing machines and dishwashers as an integral part of the kitchen. To keep your plumbing neat and tidy, we’d always recommend the best position for these to be either side of the sink base unit but this is not always possible. Integrated dishwashers normally have enough space at low level to run the plumbing feeds, integrated washing machines do not though and will not fit with plumbing directly behind them. Waste pipes will not fit behind either unless at very low level. 


Simple things to look for, is there a soil stack in the room? Is there boxing running from floor to ceiling around 250mm in one corner of the room? If so this is likely to be a soil stack and will probably impact on the positioning of your wet appliances. Have a look to see if the waste pipe runs through the outside wall, you will see this running into a drain normally outside and below the kitchen window. If you have this, great, it increases your options hugely.

Bear in mind with integrated washing machines, although the hinging of the fascia can be reversed the, appliance doors are always hinged on the left and cannot normally be reversed. On a practical level and for easy access, you would most likely want the appliance door and the fascia hinged the same way so aesthetically, they are normally best positioned to the left hand side of the sink. Try to avoid positioning these in a right hand corner, as it will restrict access into the appliance.

Kitchen Design Layout – 5 Simple tips on cabinet positioning and sizing

So we have been through some general kitchen design layout information, so listed below are not necessarily critical to the use of your kitchen but they are ideas that help on the everyday practicality.​

  1. Think about where you are going to put your kettle. It’s never best to position these directly below a wall unit as the steam from the kettle could damage the cabinet or door directly above it, but do try and have a wall unit close by as this would be ideal for tea, coffee, sugar and cups/mugs. Simple but most people don’t think of it.​
  2. Try and position a cutlery drawer close to your dishwasher. Most people appreciate loading cutlery straight from the dishwasher into a drawer, so having a cutlery drawer close by is really useful.​
  3. Wall units either side of your extractor/hob are really useful. Again, not critical but ideal for salt, pepper condiments and herbs and spices that you might want easily to hand when cooking on your hob.​
  4. Consider where you might want a bin. Really useful to have this as close as possible to your dishwasher or sink, as this is where the main cleaning activity takes place and where you’re most likely to want to dispose of the rubbish.​
  5. Be careful with the size of the sink base unit. If you’ve multiple wet appliances, because of the plumbing involved it’s likely that you may not be able to have a shelf in this unit. Keep the size of this unit to a minimum as it could free up space for another cabinet giving you more storage space.

All simple tips but hope these help.​

We hope you have enjoyed this post about kitchen design layout, If you would like more information or would like to talk to us about your kitchen design, please do not hesitate to contact us. Also, if you found this post helpful please share it as that would really help us out, thanks :).  

As always if you have any questions, or need advice, please leave them in the comment section below, give us a call, 01775 518002 or fill out our contact form here.


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