DIY Built-In Bar with Mini Fridge: Create Your Dream Entertainment Area

CEO Khai Intela
When it comes to designing the perfect entertainment area for your home, a built-in bar with a mini fridge is a fantastic addition. It not only adds functionality but also brings a touch of elegance...

When it comes to designing the perfect entertainment area for your home, a built-in bar with a mini fridge is a fantastic addition. It not only adds functionality but also brings a touch of elegance to any space. In this article, we will guide you through the process of creating your very own DIY built-in bar with a mini fridge.

A Confession and a Disclaimer

Before we get started, I have a confession to make. This tutorial was not originally intended to be written. However, due to the success of our own project, we decided to share our experience with you. So, while it may not be as detailed as our usual tutorials, it will definitely give you a good idea of how to create your own built-in bar.

Now, let's jump right in!

Recommended Tools

To begin, let's gather the tools you'll need for this project:

  • Jigsaw
  • Circular Saw
  • Miter Saw
  • Nail Gun
  • Drill

Please note that while a jigsaw can be used for all the cuts, having a circular saw and miter saw will make the process much easier.

Shopping List

Here's a list of the materials you'll need:

  • Mini-Fridge (we used this one)
  • Pre-made cabinet (we used this one - it's an 18x34.5x24 base cabinet)
  • Sanded plywood
  • 1x1/4x4
  • 1x2x4
  • 1x3x4
  • 1x4x4
  • 2x4x8s
  • 2.5" Kreg screws
  • 2.5" and 1.25" screws
  • Nails (size depends on the size of boards used for face frames)
  • L-Brackets
  • Vent
  • Outlet extender
  • Paintable caulk
  • Clear caulk
  • Paint (we used Sherwin Williams Naval)

How to Turn a Stock Cabinet into a Built-In Bar

Step 1: Prep

Before you begin building your DIY built-in bar, it's important to plan out your final dimensions. Measure the space where you want to install the bar and determine the width, depth, and height. Once you have your measurements, create a cut list and shopping list for the materials.

Step 2: Frame Out Your Structure

To ensure proper ventilation for the mini-fridge, frame out the structure with 2x4s. Place the cabinet and fridge in their desired positions and tape out the overall footprint. Leave enough space behind the fridge for airflow. Secure the framing with screws and attach 1x4 boards to the ground to raise and stabilize the fridge.

Step 3: Cut the Plywood Side

Cut a piece of plywood to cover the outside of the fridge. Measure the height and depth of your structure and cut the plywood accordingly. If you have baseboards, cut the plywood to fit around them.

Step 4: Cut Hole for Vent

To prevent overheating, add a vent to the side of the built-in. Cut a hole in the section with slats, ensuring it's not too big. Secure the vent with screws.

Step 5: Cut Hole for Outlet

Add an outlet to the side of the cabinet, ensuring it's placed at a convenient spot. Cut a hole to accommodate the outlet using the appropriate measurements.

Step 6: Add Face Frames

Now, it's time to add face frames to give your built-in a polished look. Cut the boards to your desired sizes and attach them to the framing. Ensure proper spacing for the fridge door to open smoothly.

Step 7: Prep for Paint

Cover the entire plywood sheet with spackle to fill the wood grain. Use wood filler or spackle to fill in any seams or nail holes. Once dry, sand off the excess and caulk any areas where the built-in meets the wall. Prime the wood and sand again before painting.

Step 8: Paint

Paint the entire built-in using your chosen color (we used Sherwin Williams Naval) for a stunning finish. Consider painting the pieces before installing them for ease.

Step 9: Add Your Countertop

Build and finish your countertop using a 2x10 pine board. Attach it to the pre-made cabinet using corner brackets. Use L-brackets to secure the countertop to the framing on the opposite side.

Step 10: Add Wine Storage and Shelves

To complete your built-in bar, add slanted wine storage and shelves. Follow a separate tutorial for making the wine storage. For the shelves, use torched and sealed 2x10 boards. Hang them using brackets designed for 2x10 shelves.

Congratulations! You've successfully created your very own DIY built-in bar with a mini fridge. Now it's time to enjoy your new entertainment area and show it off to your friends and family.

We would love to see what you've built! Feel free to share your photos with us on Instagram (@craftedbythehunts).

DIY Built-In Bar Make this built-in bar your next DIY project.

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