How to Install the Base Grille on a GE Refrigerator

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The base grille is located at the bottom of your refrigerator.
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A GE refrigerator front grille is also called a kick plate because it's located at the bottom front of a fridge, at foot level. Although you won't actually use it for football kicking practice, it's so-named because the toe of your shoe may inadvertently make contact if you're standing too close to the appliance. You may need to install a GE refrigerator kick plate grille, for example, if you have to remove it for cleaning the condenser coil or leveling your fridge.

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Base Grille Removal Safety Precaution

Before removing or installing a GE refrigerator bottom grille, it's important to disconnect the power to your fridge. If you're unable to move the refrigerator so that you can unplug it from the electrical receptacle behind it, turn off the circuit breaker to the appliance. And to ensure your safety, don't restore the power to your refrigerator until after you've installed the base grille.

GE Refrigerator Front Grille Removal

The method you'll use to remove your GE refrigerator front grille depends on the model of your fridge. Consult your user manual for the method that applies to you.

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For some GE refrigerator models, such as a Model 21 bottom-freezer refrigerator, all you'll have to do is remove the two end caps from the base grille and pull the grille straight out toward you while holding the bottom of the grille.

For other GE refrigerator models, such as a Model 22 side-by-side refrigerator, you'll first need to open the fridge doors. Using a Phillips head screwdriver, remove the two screws — one at each end of the base grille — and pull the grille straight out toward you.

GE Refrigerator Front Grille Installation

To install a base grille that you removed by simply pulling it out (without having to remove any screws), align the prongs that you'll see on the back of the grille with the slots in the refrigerator cabinet and push the grill straight forward until it snaps in place. Replace the end caps by snapping on the top of the caps first before snapping the bottom of the caps next.

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To install a base grille that's attached by screws, push in the grille so that it aligns with the screw holes. Use a Phillips head screwdriver to tighten the screws.

GE Monogram Refrigerator Grille Kits

Some GE refrigerator models, such as the GE Monogram series, have custom base grille panels that come in a kit for installation. The Monogram series offers luxury features, including spotlight LED lighting, metal door bins and custom panels that match kitchen cabinet décor.

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GE notes that installing grille kits for some Monogram refrigerators comes with a high degree of difficulty. These models require two to three skilled installers working for three to five hours.

Remove Base Grille for Cleaning

You may be removing a GE refrigerator front grille to clean underneath the fridge or to clean the condenser coil. GE recommends cleaning the condenser coil at least once yearly to help keep your refrigerator running efficiently. After removing the base grille, sweep or vacuum any dust, pet hair or other debris underneath the fridge and around the coil. GE makes a brush that's specifically designed for this purpose, which you'll find at most appliance stores.

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Victoria Lee Blackstone is a horticulturist and a professional writer who has authored research-based scientific/technical papers, horticultural articles, and magazine and newspaper columns. Her writing expertise covers diverse industries, including horticulture, home maintenance and DIY projects, banking, finance, law and tax. Blackstone has written more than 2,000 published works for newspapers, magazines, online publications and individual clients.