DIY Refrigerator Door Shelf Retainer Bar – Guide

Being a DIYer is helpful because you fix or replace faulty home items, and the refrigerator door shelf retaining bar is not left out.

A refrigerator door shelf retaining bar or refrigerator door rack is a white plastic shelf used for tall bottles in the refrigerator.

Making DIY Refrigerator Door Shelf Retainer Bar

A DIY refrigerator door shelf retainer bar is necessary if the old one is bad or no longer stays in place. This will protect your bottles and keep them cold for longer. 

Although the bar is fragile, you can easily install or replace it.

This article will explain how you can make a refrigerator door shelf retaining bar or door rack.

DIY Refrigerator Door Shelf Retainer Bar || With Wood

You will need the following tools to make a refrigerator door shelf retaining bar.

  • Pencil
  • Tape
  • A piece of wood (1 by 2)
  • G-clamp
  • Nails or screws
  • Sandpaper
  • Paint

Before you start, unplug the refrigerator or off the circuit breaker. Follow the steps below to the DIY refrigerator door shelf retainer bar.

Step 1: Remove the Old Retainer Bar

If the damaged old retainer bar is still on the shelf, remove it by pulling it up. In situations where it is missing, skip this step and move to the next one.

Step 2: Take Measurement

  • Use tape to measure the hole’s dimensions and entrance to the outer edge of the refrigerator door shelf and take note of the measurement.
  • Measure the overall width and height of the shelf too.

Step 3: Cut The Wood

  • Cut the piece of wood to 2 inches in length and 27 ¼ inches in width. Also, cut out a block of wood for the hole in the refrigerator door, which is 2 inches long and ⅜ inches wide.
  • Cut out 2 inches of wood (a less thick wood) for the hole to serve as a hook that will slide into the hole. The bottom wood should be angled.
  • Cut out a thicker wood (2 inches) for the hole’s entrance to the outer edge.
  • Note that you are cutting wood for the left and right sides of the bar.

Step 4: Gluing, Nailing, and Clamping

  • Glue the hole’s entrance to the outer edge wood to the angled part of the 2 inches hole wood.
  • Clamp it and wait for 15 to 20 minutes for it to dry.

Step 5: Attach the Overall Shelf Wood

  • Attach the 27 ¼ inches-long wood to the bottom of the thick wood.
  • Glue it and clamp it.
  • Secure it with nails and screws and leave it for a few minutes to dry. Then you can sand and paint the edges.

Step 6: Test the Retainer Bar

  • After the bar is dried, test it by putting the hole part into the shelf’s hole. Your DIY Refrigerator Door Shelf Retainer Bar is ready.

DIY Refrigerator Door Shelf Retainer Bar || With Small Curtain Rods

To make a refrigerator retainer bar using curtain rods, you need two adjustable curtain rods and screws.

The issue with this method is you can’t put short condiment bottles in there; they’ll fall off because the curtain rods are small.

Your beer bottle and other taller containers will sit comfortably. The good thing is the rods come with holes in them, so there is no need for drilling.

Here’s how to DIY Refrigerator Door Shelf Retainer Bar.


  • Measure the width of the inside of your refrigerator first. Smaller refrigerators have doors that open on either side, while larger refrigerators have doors on both sides that open together. Before buying a curtain rod, you need to know which type of refrigerator you have.
  • Pick out a small curtain rod that will fit inside your refrigerator.
  • Remove the damaged retainer bar.
  • Insert the curtain rod and insert the screw in the hole provided.
  • Use a drill to fasten the curtain rod to the hole in the refrigerator shelf.

DIY Refrigerator Door Shelf Retainer Bar || With Plastic Rods

You can do this simple DIY Refrigerator Door Shelf Retainer Bar in less than an hour. You will need some plastic rods or PVC pipe and a glue gun or epoxy.


  • Cut two pieces of PVC pipe to the length of the refrigerator shelf. The diameter of the plastic needs to be small enough that it can fit inside the hinge area but large enough that it will not come out when you press down on the door.
  • Use a hot glue gun to glue one end of each rod onto each side of the hinge area on your refrigerator door.
DIY Refrigerator Door Shelf Retainer Bar

DIY Refrigerator Door Shelf Retainer Bar Replacement

Replacing a door shelf retainer is an easy task with the right tools. The tools you need are:

  • Hacksaw
  • File
  • Pen
  • Ruler or measuring tape, depending on the width.

Unplug the fridge from the socket or off the circuit breaker, then follow these steps to replace your broken or missing refrigerator door shelf retaining bar.

Step 1: Get the retaining bar. You can buy it online.

Step 2: Bring out the old retaining bar by pulling it out from the refrigerator’s shelf.

Step 3: Measure the dimensions of the space on the refrigerator’s door shelf.

Step 4: Cut the size of the retaining bar. Manufacturers stopped cutting the retaining bar size because refrigerator door shelves come in different sizes. Place the tape or ruler on the new retaining bar and mark the points with a ruler.

Step 5: Cut out the excess part of the retaining bar with a hacksaw.

Step 6: Smoothen the bar’s edge by filing it with a file.

Step 7: Install the new door shelf retaining bar into the slides in the door shelf and push it down.

How To Repair A Broken Refrigerator Door Shelf

Below are steps to fix your broken refrigerator door shelf:

Step 1: Before you start, lay a craft paper before placing the shelf you will be gluing on it.

Step 2: Cut the plastic lid into a circular patch and ensure there are no ridges on it. The plastic should be strong and flexible because it is going to create a band-aid and serve as a tie under the crack you will be repairing.

Step 3: Open the crack on the shelf so that the glue can get inside it. Pour the glue inside and snap the crack close.

Caution: Wear gloves for this step because the glue can stick to your fingers.

Step 4: Use a bar clamp to clamp the glue side of the shelf and ensure it is secure. Then flip it over with the clamps on.

Step 5: Apply glue on the backside of the shelf and place the plastic patch on it. Turn the plastic patch in a circular motion to spread the glue.

Step 6: Clamp the patch by placing the wood on it and clamping with a C-clamp. Leave it about an hour to cure.

Step 7: Use sandpaper to sand down the glue’s residue from the shelf. You are through with repairing your shelf.


A refrigerator retainer bar is a great way to expand the storage space in your kitchen. These bars are usually made from steel or wood, but you can make your own using small curtain rods.

If you are handy or even semi-handy and want to save a few bucks, I highly recommend taking on this project as it is easy, will only cost a few dollars, and it’s convenient.

As long as you follow the step-by-step directions in this DIY refrigerator door shelf retainer bar, you should be able to handle the project with ease.

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I am a professional appliance repair expert and write articles that help average users diagnose and troubleshoot their kitchen gadgets, like microwaves, dishwashers, etc. I’m a foodie by heart and love reviewing food recipes, ingredients, and the cookware products used in them for meal preparation.