Is It Okay to Move a French Door Fridge on Its Side?

Refrigerators come in all shapes and sizes. Various qualities and characteristics have emerged in favour as they have shifted over the years. At the moment, one prominent design that’s gaining more and more traction is the French door fridge.

If you are unfamiliar with fridge nuances, you may be asking what a French Door refrigerator is. In this article, we’ll be tackling questions like what a french door fridge is and why upright is the best position for moving fridges. Read on!

What Exactly is a French Door Refrigerator?

French doors are double doors that provide a lot of light and open space when installed in a home. They are said to have originated during the French Renaissance when symmetry was popular in construction, which is why they are known as “French doors.” 

These refrigerators have two outward-opening refrigerator doors with a split in the center. They can be opened separately or both at the same time. The concept is that by opening both, you open up the entire space, making everything visible. The bottom of most French door refrigerators has one or two freezer drawers. This is useful because most people use the refrigerator more regularly. Furthermore, the sizable bottom freezer drawers provide more organized storage space.

Can You Transport a French Refrigerator On Its Side?

While some refrigerator models can be positioned horizontally during transport without any permanent damage, some models strictly require a vertical or prone position while in the truck. As a general rule, all French doors, bottom freezer, compact, and built-in refrigerators can only be moved in an upright or prone position. If you’re unsure about your refrigerator, consult the manufacturer’s guide or website. 

What Usually Happens When You Transport Refrigerators On Their Side?

When a refrigerator is horizontal, the oil from the compressor begins to leak out and block the coolant pipes. Suppose you really must move a fridge lying down. In that case, you may try to limit oil leaks by positioning the refrigerator on a side with the compressor tube facing upwards – in other words, if the compressor lines flow out of the fridge’s right side, lay the fridge on its left.

Aside from that, laying a refrigerator flat on its back is a big no-no: the weight of the fridge might harm its internal parts, even if they aren’t exposed.

How Can You Safely Transport Other Refrigerator Models On Their Side?

Refrigerators should ideally be moved upright to avoid disruption to the sealed refrigeration system and prevent interior parts damage. It is typically safe to lay a refrigerator on its side as long as you allow it to rest upright before turning it on. This will allow the oils to return to the compressor.

A decent rule of thumb is to leave the refrigerator upright (and unplugged) for the same period lying on its side. If you place it on its side for 4 hours, you should also rest upright for 4 hours.


Before you start moving your refrigerator, read the moving instructions in your user’s handbook or on the manufacturer’s website. For models with numerous doors or non-standard door configurations, the instructions will typically inform you which side should be placed first.

There are also certain types that, due to their design, cannot be moved securely on their side. If your refrigerator is one of those kinds, you’ll need to make other arrangements and move it upright.

There are more answers where that came from! Your questions like “How Much is a Small Fridge” are all answered in-depth at Pixel Fridge, the one resource to answer them all! To further your fridge education, visit our blog today!

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