Once a fridge dies, there's not much you can do. You need to change it. The problem is somewhat harder to deal with if you are going from a built-in fridge to a non-built-in model. An enterprising hacker from Italy decided to retrofit a cabinet where his built-in fridge was located with some drawers to help organize hid kitchen better.
Giacomo's built-in fridge died a while ago, so his family decided to get a new free-standing one, instead of another built-in. It made Giacomo think about how to reuse the now vacant cabinet that housed the built-in fridge. The main cabinet was a perfect place to hack, which he did thanks to five IKEA Rationell drawers.
He had to use some plywood to widen the side of the door so that the drawers would fit. Giacomo also mentions that if you plan on doing the same kind of hack, you have to be very careful with the offset of the door when you open it. It's definitely an interesting reuse of the space where a built-in fridge used to be placed.
There are a lot of advantages of doing a hack like this. Since the cabinet already fits with the rest of the kitchen, getting rid of it is not really an option in most cases, without some big modifications. While Giacomo used IKEA Rationell drawers, any type of shelving and drawers would function. Though we have to say that using these types of pull-out drawers is a perfect way to organize a pantry.
(via Ikeahackers, photos by Giacomo)