What’s the Difference Between Integrated and Built-In Refrigerators?


There are countless home appliance models available to suit virtually every lifestyle. If you’re designing or remodeling your kitchen, you may be wondering about the difference between integrated and built-in refrigerators. Our guide will shed some light on how to tell the two apart.

The Difference Between Integrated and Built-In Refrigerators Explained

What Is an Integrated Refrigerator?

Integrated refrigerators are built into the kitchen housing and designed to completely blend into the kitchen cabinetry. They are completely flush with the counter depth, making a seamless design that seems to disappear in the kitchen. The result is very subtle and sleek.

Difference Between Integrated and Built-In Refrigerator
Photo Credit: Sub-Zero

What Is a Built-In Refrigerator?

A built-in refrigerator is built into the kitchen housing also. However, the built-in refrigerator protrudes a few inches beyond the cabinetry, so you will see the doors and handles more prominently, as they are not flush with the cabinet depth.

Flush doors and handles versus protruding doors and handles is a key difference between integrated and built-in refrigerators.

integrated vs built in refrigerator
Photo Credit: Sub-Zero

Integrated vs Built-In Refrigerators

What is the difference between integrated and built-in refrigerators? Both styles are built into the kitchen housing, however, one of the main distinctions of integrated vs built-in refrigerators is counter depth. Integrated models are completely flush whereas built-in models do have a protruding profile.

Both integrated and built-in refrigerators have fantastic visibility of the interior compared to traditional free-standing refrigerators. They are available in a variety of widths, maximizing refrigeration space and providing customizable options for your kitchen. Therefore, the difference in style doesn’t compromise your ability to have adequate refrigeration. Your design options are different based on whether or not you want a seamless or distinct profile for your refrigerator.

What Brands Make Integrated and Built-In Refrigerators

When exploring the difference between integrated and built-in refrigerators, it is helpful to know what brands cater to these styles.


Sub-Zero has been leading the refrigeration industry for years. With built-in and integrated refrigerator models, you can customize your refrigeration needs while matching your kitchen decor. Explore Sub-Zero refrigerator models here.


Thermador refrigeration caters to even the most astute home chef. Advanced technology and custom design invite you to create a space that is unique to your needs. Whether you need space to store all of your farmer’s market produce or jars from a weekend of canning, Thermador has configuration options to suit you. Explore Thermador refrigerator models here.


Gaggenau’s multi-flow air system and cushioned door closing system are just a couple of the prized features of their cutting-edge refrigerators. With fully integrated, built-in models, Gaggenau does not disappoint. Their refrigerator’s exceptional performance and creative design options make an impressive display in any kitchen. Explore Gaggenau refrigerator models here.

When you invest in high-end refrigerators and appliances, you won’t trust their repair to just anyone. We take pride in having the most qualified and highly-trained technicians in the industry. So when your appliance needs service, schedule an appointment with our refrigeration experts to get the job done right the first time.

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