Any kitchen will either have a base unit or a wall unit. However, base units have become popular with the increase in need for space optimization in any kitchen.
Kitchen base cabinets are the crucial areas in any kitchen both for providing enough storage area together with creating a surface for a worktop that rests on the kitchen cabinets.
Cabinets in any kitchen go along in providing an extra elegant look on the kitchen through which they complement any design of your kitchen.
If the concept of kitchen base cabinets is not clear to you, rest assured that you are not alone. Many homeowners give a little or no thought on the different cabinetry they include in their kitchen. With this guide, you will have all the information you need to have when putting up a kitchen base unit.
Keep reading what I have for you today as I have divided it to your needs.
What is a Base Unit in Kitchen?
A base unit in the kitchen is any base cabinet whose design is such that the cabinet lies under the countertop of your kitchen. A base unit system is taken to be one of the largest storage areas you can have in your kitchen, through which they have a typical depth of up to 24 Inches.
Base units in a kitchen are taken to play a major role in the storage foundation of your kitchen. The reason for this is the high storage area through which kitchen base units provide with higher holding capacity compared to the kitchen wall units.
Furthermore, kitchen base units play a major role when it comes to the general décor of your kitchen. This is so as they will fill most of your entire kitchen, and the décor touch they provide is very significant to the overall look of your kitchen.
Whenever you opt to purchase a kitchen base unit, it is highly recommended looking for the cupboards which come with the kitchen base unit as an accompanying set. Kitchen base units come in the construction of different materials.
Moreover, to ensure that you can save on your budget on the base units, most of them will have the only visible areas as solid wood with other hidden areas having other materials that save on the cost of the kitchen base unit.
The kitchen base units are elegantly interspersed with other kitchen appliances such as a refrigerator, oven, stove, among many other kitchen appliances.
What are Kitchen Base Units Used for?
Getting their name from their location in a kitchen, kitchen base units act as a base from where other things in your kitchen rest on. Kitchen base units contain several uses and functions which make them essential in any kitchen.
Some of the uses of kitchen base units include the following;
Storage Space in the Kitchen
One of the main functions of the kitchen base units is to provide storage spaces for your kitchen tools and appliances.
Basically, kitchen base units are essential in storing large items in your kitchen. Such large items include pans, pots, dry goods, foods, as well as cleaning accessories.
The storage area provided comes in different designs, with some having being from drawers, lazy susans, or even the box-columns. Any that you find to use will be perfect for you, dependent on your preferences.
Despite wall cabinets mainly being used for the food items, the base units as well could be used in storage for some of the food items as well.
Base for Counters
As their name defines, kitchen base units are essential through which some of the essential kitchen items rest on. These items act as complementary to your kitchen and have a need on a base to lie on; kitchen base units provide the best solution.
Kitchen base units will be perfect in holding some of the kitchen items such as kitchen sinks, countertops as well as cooktops.
Kitchen Islands Building
Kitchen base units are a great choice to home builders as they are considered first whenever one is building a kitchen island.
The kitchen base units are joined on the base through which one can join 2 or 3 cabinets together such that it is invisible. After this, a countertop is then extended through the base units included in the base of the kitchen island.
Most kitchen layouts are common and quite similar. Most of these layouts will take up the U-shape or L-shape. Otherwise, the kitchen could just have a corridor between the walls and then have cabinets on either of the sides or on both sides.
Kitchen cabinets then play a major role in the determination of the kitchen layout, including other kitchen items that are large. Several large kitchen items such as refrigerator together with stove cooker are responsible for creating a kitchen layout as well.
If you have kitchen base units in your plan, they will be the key determinants of the general layout of your kitchen. They will determine what open floor space will be available and, on the other side, determine what space will be fully occupied.
Lastly, the kitchen base units will give you a decisive conclusion on where to place some kitchen items for floor space optimization.
How Do You Fix a Kitchen Base Unit?
Generally, kitchen base unit installation is done by professional technicians with consideration of the technicality required in the installation of the kitchen base units from scratch.
Currently, you can acquire ready-made kitchen base units, which will be easy to assemble. However, ensure that you acquire the best kitchen base units with quality materials. I recommend you to get the Ikea Kitchen base units, which I consider them high quality.
Normally, quality kitchen base units are made from a ½ Inch Plywood. Moreover, you can consider other furniture grades, such as Medium Density Fiberboard or the use of Melamine.
However, with the increase in the ready to assemble kitchen base units in the market, homeowners now find it easy to fix a kitchen base unit on your own. With these ready to assemble kitchen base units, you can now do it yourself without any need of a professional technician.
You will have to shim the base units from below before attaching the unit to the wall. You will need an absolute level on its installation to ensure the accurate installation of the wall.
Moreover, to be able to gain level easily, most ready to assemble base units contain adjustable legs, which you can use for this case.
How to Fit Kitchen Base Units
Before you commence fitting your kitchen base units, it is essential to know that there is no one specific solution for fitting kitchen base units on different types.
The only thing that remains constant on all kitchen base units’ installation is that they need to be on a level and flat and all the units being on the same height.
Furthermore, all the front edges need to be square and in line with each other. The worktops should as well sit on a level at the top of the base unit. This will require keen fitting as you will find most of the walls and floors not being level, flat or square.
Follow the below procedure on fitting your kitchen base units;
Step I: Floor Level Check and Marking Base Unit Heights
Any installation of a kitchen base unit needs to be flat and on a level with the floor surface. The first step will involve checking the level of your floor with which you can make adjustments on the slopes with the use of your feet.
Where the floor is uneven, take the highest level to be your reference point when installing your kitchen base unit when it comes to marking the units’ heights.
To ensure that all the kitchen base units remain on the same level line, you will need to mark the level line around the wall surface. This will be dependent on the height level of your kitchen base units, through which there are different height levels depending on the manufacturer.
Measure the height of your kitchen base unit on its plinth that is normally 100mm to 150mm and then adding 10mm so that you can pull off the plinth easily. Add these heights to the full height of the kitchen base unit normally 720mm, giving you a total height of 880mm from the floor surface.
After you have determined the height of your kitchen base unit, measure the thickness of your worktop and then mark it on your wall to provide the full height of the kitchen base unit, including the worktop as well.
Step II: Unpacking the Kitchen Base Unit from the Purchased Pack
Get your ready to assemble kitchen base unit that you purchased for fitting. Check if there are any damages before starting the fitting right away. Identify all the units included on your base unit, such as the drawer unit, cupboard unit, sink unit, and an area of a working countertop.
If your kitchen base unit requires assembling fully, then you will need to assemble everything and leave it as one. Assemble every part of the kitchen base unit, including the support legs, and ensure no fixture or fitting is missing on assembly.
After the full assembly, place every unit on its position it will take after full installation on the floor area. As the legs of the kitchen base units are adjustable, adjust the legs accordingly on each unit to have them be on a base level on the line marked previously on the wall.
Ensure to maintain the complete level of the base unit through the use of a spirit level on the 6 directions of the base unit.
Step III: Pipe Channel Cutting and Fitting Flush to the Walls
To avoid any damage on the pipework in your kitchen, it is essential to have a lookout on the pipework, which can include gas supplies or even water supplies, among many others.
If you need to place some existing pipework to fit through your kitchen base unit, then you will need to cut some channels on the units for your pipework to go through. Use a pencil in marking both the bottom and the top of the pipe at the point it meets the unit.
Cut a semicircular notch where the pipe will sit on through the use of a hole saw.
Step IV: Trimming Base Units to Fit flush to the wall
As no wall is fully flat, you will need to trim the base units on the faces touching the wall to ensure that they fit best and provide a proper lining with other base units.
You may need to make a cut on all the rear edges for proper fitting. As a result of this, marking the edges correctly before trimming is necessary. I recommend you use a circular saw though you might as well incorporate the use of a jigsaw or a handsaw.
After cutting the marked point on your edges, move the base unit back to its position to check whether it fits with the wall perfectly and whether it is in level with the next base unit.
Step V: Consider Other Fixtures in the wall such as Electric Sockets
As you are installing your base units on an existing room, you might find a challenge of any existing fittings, such as electric sockets. With this, you need to have your existing fitting are fully considered.
You can consider cutting the back edge of your kitchen base units such that the fixtures fit hence ensuring it can be used still after the installation of the kitchen base unit. Otherwise, you can consider removing the sockets completely, especially if they are rarely used.
Lastly, you can change their current position to somewhere else; it does not affect the kitchen base unit installation.
Step VI: Fixing the Base Units Together and Fixing on the Wall
If your kitchen base units are next to each other, you should fix them together and then fix them tightly to the wall. While doing this, you will need to place the fixing the screws behind the base hinges hence hiding them to ensure that the base unit remains neat.
Before fixing them together, you need to ensure that the base units are in line and level to each other independently. If not, make the necessary adjustments, such as pulling one or cutting the rear edges of the protruding base unit to fit the other unit.
Ensure that they remain square to each other to avoid losing the position in the future. After you ensure that they are in the level and the front edges are in level with each other, clamp the base units together to avoid any movement.
You can now screw the base units together while constantly checking the levels with the use of a spirit level to ensure that there is no movement happening while screwing.
While screwing the kitchen base units to the wall, you will require to use an angle bracket. One end of this angle bracket is screwed to the wall while the other is screwed on the base unit to hold it firmly to the wall.
I recommend fixing the base unit on the wall next to it, as this will not affect the other base units in case there is a movement.
Step VI: Fixing the Worktop
After you are done fixing the base units together and to the wall surface, you will then need to cut and then fit your worktop in place. The worktop should take the full shape of the base units and fit the wall to cover the base units and get to the wall surface perfectly.
Ensure that your worktop remains in line with each other on the front edges for the best shape in your kitchen. The leveling of the worktop will not be an issue at this point as your base units are on a level.
You can consider using glue in fixing the worktop or screwing them appropriately to ensure that the base units remain fully neat and tidy.
Well, now, you are good enough to use your kitchen base units. Good Job!!!
What Sizes are Kitchen Base Units?
Though many kitchen base units share a similar height size, there is no specific size of a kitchen base unit. Kitchen base units come in different sizes through which you will have to choose one that fits your needs. In addition to this, you will require to consider the size of your kitchen and what size of kitchen base units you need.
The average size and depth of a kitchen base unit are usually 720mm in height. However, measuring the total height of a kitchen could be quite different, as you will require to measure the height of the plinth, which is normally around 100mm to 150mm with an allowance of 10mm.
On adding the base unit height normally 720mm, you get a total height of averagely 880mm. However, there are some people who prefer taller kitchen base units. As a result, there are other heights for kitchen base units, which move up to 1000mm high.
The changes in the size of a kitchen base unit are normally on its width compared to the changes in the height of a kitchen base unit. The width of the base unit varies depending on the room size of the base unit you need.
In addition to this, the width will be determined by the floor space you have and one that you can spare for your kitchen base units. If you have large floor space, then you can consider using the long width.
The basic width size of a kitchen base unit is 150mm. However, other sizes are available in the market, including 1200mm, 1000mm, 900mm, 800mm, 700mm, 600mm, 500mm, 450mm, 400mm, 350mm, and 300mm.
The worktops used on a kitchen base unit have an average size of 30mm to 40mm.
Should Kitchen Base Units be Fixed to the Wall?
Yes, kitchen base units should be fixed to the wall. This is to ensure that your kitchen base units are firmly held to avoid any movement and to ensure that they provide you with a long-lasting service.
Generally, you should incorporate the use of an angle bracket in firmly securing your kitchen base units on the wall. The angle bracket will avoid any movement considering that there are many movement activities done on the worktops of the kitchen base units, which could lead them to get out of their place.
On one end of the angle bracket, you will fix it to the wall tightly through screwing it. The other end of the angle bracket is then screwed to the base unit hence holding it tightly in place.
If you are fixing your base unit to a wall or blocks or bricks, you will be needed to drill a hole and then use a wall plug-in screwing the angle to the wall.
If you are fixing the base unit to plasterboard or a timber wall, you will then need to locate a stud and then fix the angle bracket there; otherwise, you can fix your own.
Well, who doesn’t love to have an elegant kitchen? More so, who doesn’t need extra storage area? Everyone is need of having enough storage space together with gaining an elegant look to their kitchen.
I love the look of my kitchen currently having incorporated the use of kitchen base units to the optimality. Why not you? I found them to be a great way of giving a different touch and look from my friends.
Kitchen base units are not difficult to install, putting into consideration that most of the current base units are normally ready to assemble. All that is needed of you is assembling them easily and then fitting them to the wall.
With the above guide, you are sure to have the best experience from the use of the kitchen base units from assembling them to fixing them to your walls today.