Replacing a Drop-In Stove with a Slide-In Stove
Drop-in stove tops seamlessly blend in with countertop and cabinetry designs as an appliance that fits in -- instead of next to -- the kitchen's cabinetry. Slide-in stoves improve the way freestanding stove units present with a kitchen's cabinetry by fitting into the cabinetry and its countertop. The stove top fits snugly into the countertop in a way that looks like the drop-in stove top solution. While the cooktop surfaces of both units offer similar features, the added oven space beneath is a major reason a homeowner would switch from a drop-in to a slide-in unit. Additional oven space takes priority over extra cabinet space, when a kitchen has ample storage.
Remove the Drop-In Stove Top
Remove the drop-in stove top as the first step. Turn off the power, disconnect the lines and loosen the brackets from underneath the countertop. These brackets secure the unit to the countertop to secure it in place and prevent shifting and vibration of the unit while in use. Lift the unit out of its cut-out hole in the countertop and set it aside. If it is in good working condition, consider reselling it or giving it away, instead of ending up in a landfill.
Taking the Measurements
Measure the cut-out opening in the countertop. Thew width measurement is key, since this determines what size slide-in-unit fits in the space. Hopefully finding one that fits with minimal to no cuts in the counter top is possible.
Finding a Slide-In Unit
Take the measurements to find a slide-in unit that fits in the width of the drop-in stove top's cut-out. First locate the size, and then select the style. Unless the drop-in's and slide-in's measurements are standard to both styles, making it easy to find the right-sized unit, stick with selecting a slightly wider unit than a slightly smaller one. A smaller unit defeats the effect of the slide-in solution by leaving gaps on the sides of the unit, which is no different than a standard stove-oven combo unit.
Making the Cuts and Adjustments
After selecting the slide-in stove unit, the next step is to cut out the countertop and the cabinetry beneath to retrofit the unit into place. For butcher-block, wood and laminate countertops, a homeowner skilled with a saw and accurate, clean cuts can attempt to make cuts. For these and all other types of countertops, including granite, concrete and tile, hire a professional to come in and cut the countertop. Have the slide-in stove on hand, so that he can make precise, on-site measurements and cut the countertop to the exact fit, the first time.
Cutting the cabinetry to fit the slide-in unit, and refacing it where there were once cabinet draws or doors, is another task to complete. Do it yourself if you have the tools and experience to make the vertical cuts and close off the cabinetry, or hire a professional cabinetry fabricator to make the cabinetry look like it was always that way.