14+ ADA Compliant Kitchen Appliances

One of the most popular articles on our blog is: Top 5 things to consider when designing an accessible kitchen for wheelchair users.  Within the article, our very own Nikol Prieto discussed 5+ ways to make your kitchen accessible.  She covered guidelines for accessible work surfaces/counters, kitchen sinks, cabinets, doorways/hallways, and appliances.  As a wheelchair user, one of the most important things I could benefit from is different accessible appliances.  So in today’s blog, I’m going to provide you with a list of ADA compliant kitchen appliances.  The entire list of requirements and kitchen appliances are provided by GE appliances.

I’m going to first discuss the specific requirements for an appliance to be deemed “ADA compliant.”  In general, in order for an appliance to be ADA compliant, it mustn’t require a far reach, tight grasping, pinching or twisting of the wrist, buttons must be within reach, and more.  The following guidelines may prove to be redundant across all appliances, but they are all equally important (thus necessary to state) in terms of ADA compliance.

Requirements for ADA compliance on all GE kitchen appliances:

1. Refrigerators

  • Top-freezer refrigerator ADA requirements:
    • 100% of fresh food space below 54 inches
    • 50% of the freezer space below 54 inches
    • Controls must:
      • Be below 54 inches
      • Be operable with one hand and not require tight grasping, pinching, or twisting of the wrist
      • Require force of less than 5 pounds to activate
  • Side-by-side refrigerator ADA requirements:
    • Controls must:
      • Allow parallel approach by a person in a wheelchair with maximum high side reach of 54 inches for operation
      • Be operable with one hand and not require tight grasping, pinching or twisting of the wrist
      • Require force of less than 5 pounds to activate.
2. Dishwashers:
  • Maximum high forward reach for controls and operating mechanisms is 48 inches; maximum low forward reach is 15 inches.
  • Controls and operating mechanisms must be operable with one hand and shall not require tight grasping, pinching, or twisting of the wrist.
  • Required force to activate controls should be no more than 5 pounds.
  • All rack space shall be accessible from the front of the machine for loading and unloading dishes.

3. Oven Ranges:

  • The location of controls for ranges and cooktops shall not require reaching across burners.
  • Maximum high forward reach for controls and operating mechanisms is 48 inches; maximum low forward reach 15 inches.
  • Controls and operating mechanisms must be operable with one hand and shall not require tight grasping, pinching, or twisting of the wrist.
  • The force required to activate controls shall be no more than 5 pounds.
  • If ovens or cooktops have knee spaces below, they are required to be insulated or otherwise protected on the exposed surfaces to prevent burns, abrasions, or electrical shock.
4. Cooktops:
  • The location of the controls for ranges and cooktops shall not require reaching across burners.
  • If ovens or cooktops have knee spaces beneath, they should be insulated or protected on the exposed surfaces to prevent abrasions, burns, or electrical shock.
  • Maximum high forward reach for controls and operating mechanisms is 48 inches; maximum low forward reach is 15 inches.
  • Controls and operating mechanisms must be operable with one hand and shall not require tight grasping, pinching, or twisting of the wrist.  
  • Force required to activate controls shall not exceed 5 pounds.
5. Wall Ovens:
  • Maximum high forward reach for controls and operating mechanisms is 48 inches; maximum low forward reach is 15 inches.
  • Controls and operating mechanisms must be operable with one hand and shall not require tight pinching, grasping, or twisting of the wrist.
  • The force required to activate controls shall be no more than 5 pounds
  • Ovens shall have controls on front panels; they may be located on either side of the door.
6. Microwaves:
  • Maximum high forward reach for controls and operating mechanisms is 48 inches; maximum low forward reach is 15 inches.
  • Controls and operating mechanisms must be operable with one hand and shall not require tight grasping, pinching, or twisting of the wrist.
  • The force required to activate controls shall be no more than 5 pounds.

Now that we’ve thoroughly covered the ADA compliant guidelines for all kitchen appliances, it’s time to discuss several appliance options available from GE Appliances.  Because there are so many from GE alone, I felt it might be best to highlight the appliances with the highest consumer ratings.

1. Refrigerators:
  • GE Profile Series Energy Star French-Door Refrigerator with Keurig K-Cup Brewing System:
    • This French-door refrigerator from GE is jam-packed with features that benefit individuals with and without disabilities.
      • Top Features:
        • TwinChill Evaporators: separate climates in fresh food and freezer sections help keep foods fresh.
        • Showcase LED lighting: positioned throughout interior and under fresh food doors to spotlight food inside refrigerator and in the freezer
        • Quick space shelf: functions as a normal full-sized shelf when needed and easily slides down for instant storage flexibility.
        • Drop-down tray: allows for extra door storage when you need it and tucks away when you don’t
        • Turbo Cool setting: drops interior temperature to maintain freshness after frequent openings
  • GE Energy Star Top-Freezer Refrigerator:
    • If you’re looking for a simple, fully functional, ADA compliant refrigerator, this may be an ideal candidate.
      • Top Features:
        • Upfront dual temperature controls: separate controls for the freezer and fresh food compartments regulate interior temperatures
        • Adjustable glass shelves: a variety of shelf configurations provide additional options for food storage
        • Snack drawer: conveniently stores your favorite foods for quick, easy access
        • Large door storage: offers ideal space for storing large containers in the door, freeing up valuable shelf space

Click here to browse the entire selection of ADA compliant refrigerators.

2. Dishwashers:
  • GE Spacemaker Built-In Dishwasher:
    • If you’re in the market for a smaller (18″) dishwasher, this may be an ideal solution for you.
      • Top Features:
        • Low-profile installation capable: dishwasher design allows for simple operation and easy access
        • White racks: durable racks are designed to resist rust and secure dishes
        • Full-length flat door: door fits nearly flush with cabinetry for seamless look
        • Removable upper rack: pulls out completely to wash larger items
        • Pots and pans cycle: tough food stains are scrubbed and scoured clean with ease
  • GE Built-In Dishwasher with Hidden Controls:
    • If you’re looking for an easy-open, simple dishwasher with hidden but accessible controls, this might be ideal.
      • Top Features:
        • Bright annealed stainless steel interior: attractive interior provides long lasting durability
        • Low-profile installation: ideal for raised sub-floors and 34″ countertop heights
        • Gray racks: long-lasting, durable racks resist rusting, chipping, and peeling
        • Two utility shelves in upper rack with Stem Safe: conveniently flip down to handle tall items and protect stemware
        • 2-digit countdown display with 1-24 hour Delay Start: wash dishes when it’s convenient for you and monitor the progress
  • GE Tall Tub Built-In Dishwasher:
    • I wanted to highlight this one as one of its top features is that it’s ADA-compliant.
      • Top Features:
        • ADA-compliant: dishwasher design allows for simple operation and easy access
        • Bright annealed stainless steel interior: lustrous interior looks great and stands up to stains
        • 9 electronic touchpads: provide a smooth, easy-to-use and easy-to-clean surface
        • 2-digit countdown display with 2/4/8 hour Delay Start: electronic display counts down to delayed start time
        • Electronic controls with 4 cycles / 4 options: these modern controls make it easy to program the dishwasher

Click here to view the entire selection of ADA compliant dishwashers.

3. Ranges:
  • GE 30″ Slide-In Front Control Gas Range:
    • This is the highest consumer rated gas range from GE with nearly 70 reviews.  If you’re in the market for an ADA-compliant gas range, this may be ideal.
      • Top Features:
        • Center round burner: ideal for delicate foods and sauces
        • Gas convection oven: circulates heat for high-quality results
        • Heavy-cast, edge-to-edge grates: allow for easy movement of pans between burners
        • 5.6 cu. ft. oven capacity: enough room to cook an entire meal at once
        • Black gloss oven interior: enjoy a clean, sleek appearance
  • GE Profile Series 30″ Slide-In Front Control Double Oven Electric Convection Range:
    • If you’re looking for a new electric convection range, check out the top features of this one from GE and see if it meets your needs.
      • Top Features:
        • Expandable bridge zone: use only the heat you need with an expandable cooktop zone
        • Self-clean roller rack: easy access items with racks that glide smoothly
        • Glass touch controls: clean with little effort and set temperatures quickly
        • Black gloss oven interior: enjoy a clean, sleek appearance
        • Self-clean oven: cleans the oven cavity without the need for scrubbing

Click here to browse the entire selection of ADA compliant ranges.

4. Cooktops:
  • GE Profile Series 36″ Built-In Knob Control Cooktop:
    • If you’re searching for a new cooktop with knob controls, check out this one.
      • Top Features:
        • 12″/9″/6″ tri-ring element: use different pan sizes on this single, 3,000-watt flexible element
        • Keep Warm setting: keep food warm with GE’s lowest heat setting or boil water in minutes with this fully functional 6″ element
        • Melt setting: gently melt delicate foods without burning or scorching
        • Control lock capability: protects against unintended activation
        • Red LED backlit knobs with black glass surface: achieve a modern look with the convenience of knob controls
  • GE Profile Series 36″ Built-In Gas Cooktop:
    • If you’re searching for a new built-in gas cooktop, check out the features on this one!
      • Top Features:
        • Deep-recessed cooktop: contains spills for quick and easy cleaning
        • Sealed cooktop burners: keep spillover contained on cooktop, making cleaning quick and easy
        • 15,000 BTU Power Boil burner: produces fast, intense heat
        • Precise Simmer Burner: delivers a low setting of 140ºF
        • Deluxe cast iron grates: Premium cast iron grates offer long-lasting performance
  • GE Profile Series 36″ Built-in Touch Control Induction Cooktop:
    • If you’re searching for a cooktop operated by touch controls, this may be an ideal choice.
      • Top Features:
        • SyncBurners: control two 7″ elements at the same time to evenly heat large cookware or griddles
        • Kitchen timer: helps coordinate meal prep and cooking
        • Control lock capability: prevents unintended activation
        • Pan presence and size sensor: cook efficiently with elements that heat to the size of your pan and shut off automatically when no pan is present
        • Red LED display with black glass surface and stainless steel trim: achieve a modern look that complements the entire kitchen and other stainless steel appliances

Click here to view more ADA compliant cooktops.

5. Wall Ovens:
  • GE 30″ Built-In Single Wall Oven
    • If you’re in the market for a built-in single wall oven, consider this one with the highest consumer ratings.
      • Top Features:
        • 5.0 cu. ft. oven capacity: cook more dishes at once
        • Eight-pass broil element: get full broil coverage and even browning from edge to edge
        • Black gloss oven interior: enjoy a clean, sleek appearance
        • Electronic touch controls: confidently operate the oven with one easy touch
        • Hidden bake oven interior: make cleanup a breeze by eliminating hard-to-reach areas
  • GE Café Series Built-in French-door Single Convection Wall Oven:
    • If you spend a lot of time cooking and want a French-door single convection wall oven, check out this one’s unique features!
      • Top Features:
        • WiFi Connection: with the WiFi connect feature, you can wirelessly control oven functions directly from your smartphone!
        • Electronic dial controls: the glass touch display and ergonomic control knobs are easy to operate and clean
        • Progressive halogen oven lighting: see what you’re baking with lights that slowly illuminate the oven
        • Self-clean, heavy duty roller rack: easy access items with a rack that glides smoothly
        • Ten-pass dual broil element: large and small dishes brown evenly with two, full-coverage elements

Click here to view more ADA compliant wall ovens.

6. Microwave Ovens:
  • GE Profile Series Countertop Convection/Microwave Oven
    • If you’re wanting to purchase a convection and microwave oven 2-in-1 system, check out this one.
      • Top Features:
        • Convection cooking: choose this setting when baking or browning is desired
        • Warming oven: keeps prepared foods warm and fresh, and retains superb moistness and crispness
        • Optional built-in trim kit:  if you are wanting to achieve a more custom, built-in look, it comes with a sleek, matching trim kit
        • Convection rack: achieve golden-brown results with a specially designed rack that allows air to circulate around foods for even heat distribution during convection cooking
  • GE Profile Series Countertop Microwave Oven
    • If you’re looking for a fully functional, sleek microwave oven, check out the features on this one.
      • Top Features: 
        • Optional built-in trim kit: achieve a custom appearance and built-in convenience with a sleek, matching trim kit
        • Weight and time defrost: if you enter the weight of the food, the oven automatically sets the optimal defrosting time and power level or set your desired time for defrosting
        • Extra-large 16″ turntable: rotates food throughout the cycle and accommodates large cookware
        • Instant On controls: one-touch instant operation

Click here to view more ADA-compliant microwave ovens.

To learn more about ADA requirements, appliances, and more, check out the GE Appliances website.