Planning Your Kitchen Overseas

You’re moving to a new country and need to buy major appliances for your new home.
Here are some important things to consider when choosing these appliances.

Generally speaking, European style machines are smaller than the  American styles, and are more basic. If you’re building a kitchen, first consult with your contractor to determine how much space you have for appliances. Houses and apartments in Israel and other countries can be much smaller than in the United States, and kitchens are very tight. Careful planning of the kitchen space can save you headaches later on.

Here are the main differences between the European and American styles , you can consider all the factors and decide what’s best for you.

Cooktop Ranges (Free standing)

220V American brand machines are bigger, a standard 30 inches wide (76cm). Most are self-cleaning, some models also offer convection cooking.  Because of it’s size, you can fit four big pots on the burners. Many offer a large 5th center burner. All the American styles have heavy , solid, continuous grates (usually cast iron).
They all have large viewing windows in the doors.

Most European models, on the other hand, do offer convection cooking, but they’re not self-cleaning. They’re only 23.5 inches wide (60cm), so you can only fit 2 big pots or 4 small pots on the burners.
The grates are thinner, though you can find continuous grates on some models.
Not all models have windows in the door.

Both the U.S. and European models have sealed burners.

Refrigerators come in 4 different styles:  Side by Side , Top Mount Freezer, Bottom Mount Freezer, and French Door.

Side by Side models are 36 inches wide. (refrigerator on the right, freezer on the left). The narrow doors can better fit tight kitchens when you open them. They offer a uniform selection of food items at eye level in both the freezer and refrigerator sections. These also offer options like through-the-door ice and water.

Top or Bottom Mount Freezer models (freezer either on top or on bottom) give you space for wide items (like pizza boxes or fruit platters), the wide shelves also give you easier access to items in the back. They generally come in three widths; 36 inches (91cm) , 32 3/4 inches (83cm) and 30 1/2 inches (77cm). The sizes range from 16 to 27 cubic feet.

The Top Mount Freezer models have the lowest initial cost, but you have to bend down to get items from the refrigerator. A Bottom Mount is the most energy efficient, and refrigerated items are easier to get to. But you have to bend to get items from the chest style freezer, and it offers less usable freezer space.

The French Door (3 or 4 Door) models are basically Bottom Mounts, with a split door on the top for the refrigerator. This gives you the advantages of both types; the narrower doors of the Side by Side and the wide shelves of the Bottom Mount. You open just what you need; one door for smaller items and both doors for larger items. (This conserves energy). Many models offer through-the-door ice and water. These are usually the most expensive style.

The French Door models are 36 inches wide (91cm). Sizes range from 25 to 29 cubic feet.


Dishwashers for the overseas market are 23 1/2 inches wide (60cm).

They’re rated by European regulators from A (best) to G (worst) in three separate categories; cleaning, drying, and energy efficiency. We are offering the highest rated models, with 3 straight A’s.
In addition, these dishwashers have the most features; stainless steel interiors, folding tines on the bottom rack to accommodate pots, adjustable upper rack to accommodate larger dishes, 4 spray arms, high heat cycle (70° c), and delay start.

Clothes Washers

220V American brand washers are bigger with more capacity. They’re 27 inches wide (69cm) with a capacity of 10 kilo (22 pounds). European machines are 23.5″ (60cm) with a capacity of 6-7 kilo (13-15 pounds). You’ll save precious floor space with a European washer (they’re also stackable with European dryers), but you’ll be running many more loads of laundry.

There’s another major difference: European washers boil their own water during the cycle, they are only hooked up to the cold water outlet. As a result, you get a very long washing cycle; one and a half to three hours running time. American machines are connected to both Hot and Cold water, and are done in about half an hour.
There are a few European models that are manufactured to American specifications. These are full size machines (10 kilo) and offer the option of hooking it up to both hot and cold water outlets.

U.S machines are available in both top load (door on top) or front load (door in front). European brands are only manufactured with front load.  Top loaders are easier to load and unload (no bending), while front loaders clean more efficiently and usually have a glass window in the door.
Another advantage to the top loader is that you can open it mid-cycle to throw in a forgotten article of clothing.

Both types of washers can be bought with a matching dryer.

Clothes Dryers

The American dryers are bigger, 27 or 29 inches. You can get either a stand alone model (side by side with a washer), or a stacked model (top and bottom) to save floor space.
European dryers are 23 1/2 inches. These can all be stacked with a washer.

Both gas and electric models are available.

We are now offering the premium commercial grade Speed Queen brand of washer and dryer, as well as the famous Whirlpool brand.

In Sink Waste Disposers

Many people moving overseas opt for these food waste disposal units, although it’s not an absolute must. If there’s room in your budget for these, it can make kitchen cleanup a lot easier. Food scraps and the like go straight down the drain.
A waste disposer fits in your standard kitchen sink drain, and must be installed by a professional plumber.