Kitchen benches are workspaces where a large part of kitchen work occurs, most commonly ingredient preparation. Because a lot of important tasks happen on the kitchen bench, it is necessary for it to be placed at an optimal height.
Considerations about the depth and thickness of the benchtop, as well the length of its overhang must be made as well so that a kitchen bench is as functional and ergonomic as possible.
Kitchen Bench Size
|Depth||600mm – 900mm|
|Thickness||20mm – 50mm|
Kitchen Bench Height
In Australia, the standard kitchen benchtop height measures at 900mm. Working heights, however, typically fall within 850mm to 1050mm. This is a measurement from the floor to the top of the kitchen bench.
Staying within these measurements is important, most especially for fitting appliances underneath the bench. Adjustments with regards to the height, going above or below 900mm, can also be made depending on the people that will be using the bench.
Relatively tall families would likely be more comfortable with a slightly more elevated benchtop, and vice versa.
It is important to be mindful of appliances when using taller bench heights, since there may end up being a large space between an appliance and the benchtop. This could however be mitigated by placing a drawer or cabinet above or beneath the space for the appliance, in order to fill any gaps.
Kitchen Benchtop Depth
Depth (often mistaken for width) actually refers to the benchtop, the area that you will be working on. Different materials such as natural stones, wood, metals, or others may be used, depending on your preferences for design and feel.
Standard benchtop depth is at 600mm, although this measurement can vary depending on the material used, any walls around it, and cabinets under it.
If you are butting your bench top up to an cupboard or an appliance it is important to be aware of their size. For example a fridge can have up to 900mm size depth which will look next to a 600mm bench size.
Kitchen Bench Width
Kitchen bench width dictates the “usable space” in an Australian kitchen. People use the bench-top to prepare meals, pay bills, store pots and pans, serve dinner parties etc. A wide bench allows for more functionality in an area that is generally used every day but be aware as it will eat into your usable room size.
The standard width for a kitchen bench is 600mm. If the kitchen bench has an overhang for bar stools the width will be 900mm to allow for a 300mm overhang.
Kitchen Benchtop Thickness
Different materials for a benchtop often use different thickness standards. The most typical material, laminate, has a standard thickness of 33mm. However, using materials that fall under natural stones often use 20mm as their standards.
Typically, thickness should only vary within a range of 2-3mm. However, for materials that offer variation within their design (such as woods or certain stones), a little more variation is permissible, such as in a range of 4-5mm.
Kitchen Benchtop Overhang
Benchtop overhang refers to how the edges of a benchtop extend over the base of the bench itself. The standard for overhang is 20mm.
The reason for this is primarily safety, to avoid any incidents of hitting the body against the benchtop. Typically, overhang measurement is kept uniform throughout a kitchen, for smooth design purposes.