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Episode Info

Kitchen Renovation: Part 1 #410


Beverly's son, Vince, has a kitchen that needs renovation. So on this, the first of our two-part kitchen project, Bev, Chris and Angel begin to reconfigure Vince's kitchen. They talk to a kitchen designer, remove the current cabinets, countertop and tear down a wall. They also visit with a city electrical inspector and more.

Product Information:

Demolition Cabinets Knockin' Down Wall Glass Panel In Cabinets Guests

Heather Dilger, Kitchen Designer
Schrock Cabinets (Division of Masterbrand Cabinets)

Patrick Fahey, Electrical Inspector
City of Chicago

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Projects of the Week #410

Kitchen Renovation / Part One

This show is the beginning of a 2-part kitchen remodel. My son, Vince, wanted to enlarge and update his kitchen. Unfortunately it's impossible to show every step of the remodel. However, we tried to get the high points on tape to give you a feel for what might be involved if you were to undertake a similar project. You may choose to hire a pro to do part of the project or perhaps the entire make-over, either way we're sure the tips given by our guest, kitchen Designer Heather Dilger from Schrock Cabinets, and seeing the remodel unfold, will help.

Here's a link to many of the tips Heather told us about: planning a kitchen make-over.

Briefly, Heather mentioned the importance of working with a designer, which many home centers and kitchen cabinet dealers provide for you. She mentioned most kitchen retailers are able to give computer images, including floor plan and elevation. Also, in designing the new area, take into consideration your lifestyle… do you shop weekly or monthly - this will help determine how much storage space you need. Then, how to choose the right style and types of cabinets. She emphasized the importance of keeping the refrigerator, stove and sink in close proximity to each other.

Projects of the Week #410a

Removing Appliances & Cabinets

After Heather completed the design, we applied for and received our building permit, ordered the cabinets, drywall, lumber, flooring, lighting, handles, etc. to be sure everything would be received in a timely manner. One of the most difficult tasks, if you act as the general contractor of a project like this, is scheduling deliveries of materials and sub-contractors, inspections, etc. so that the process goes as smoothly as possible.

Then it was time to get down to the nitty-gritty! Disconnecting the plumbing and removing the appliances and cabinets. This is a place where you can save yourself some money by doing it yourself. By taking your time and carefully dismantling appliances and cabinets, they can possible be sold, donated or recycled to another part of your home (basement, garage).

What You Need:

  • Ladder
  • Drill / Driver
  • Safety Glasses
  • Water Pump Pliers
  • Screwdriver
  • Adjustable Wrenches
  • Work Gloves
  • Hammer
  • Pry bars
  1. Disconnect plumbing & remove sink and dishwasher
  2. Remove countertops (usually attached to cabinets from underneath)
  3. Remove base cabinets (attached to walls with screws in back and possibly side to side through the face frame)
  4. Remove Upper Cabinets (remove screws connecting cabinets side to side, then screws in back connecting cabinets to wall)
TIP: Keep your work area clean!

Projects of the Week #410b

Knocking Down the Wall

Check to see if the wall is load bearing and if there are any obstructions within the wall. Ours was NOT a load-bearing wall, however, there were electrical outlets in the wall. ***(Also, see show # 406 where we removed a wall that a previous owner of Angel's home added to make two walk-in closets, turning the space back into a bedroom.)

Check local building codes when getting your permit - we also needed approval of my son, Vince's condo association before beginning this project.

What You Need:
  • Reciprocating saw
  • Safety Glasses
  • Utility Knife
  • Dust Masks
  • Work Gloves
  • Prybars
  • Sledge hammer
  • Ladder
  • Drywall Hatchet / Hammer
  • Flashlight
  1. Cut openings in between each stud (approximately 12"X12"). Score drywall several times with heavy-duty utility knife and carefully knock out the opening. Use a flashlight and check for obstructions inside wall. We knew where the outlets and switches were, however we needed to see the route of the electrical wires (conduit) and if there was anything else we needed to be careful of as we knocked down the wall.
  2. Removed drywall on the kitchen side of wall using a drywall hammer / hatchet to make shallow cuts in drywall
  3. This exposed the steel studs and wiring - we cut through the studs, at approximately the half-way point, with a reciprocating saw and metal saw blade. We also cut the header at each end and were able to push the top half of the wall over.
  4. Then the bottom half……
Our carpenters, Jeremy and Jay, framed out the "half wall" (which will become a peninsula with cabinets and breakfast bar/counter) to divide the kitchen from the rest of the living area. Next, the electrician took over and removed the existing wiring from where the wall was, moved the 220 line to where the stove would be located and added outlets, lighting and switches according to code.

Projects of the Week #410c

Electrical Inspector

An electrical inspector was needed to approve the electrician's work before Jeremy and Jay could close the new wall.

The inspector, Patrick Fahey, stressed the importance of having electrical work inspected - for safety's sake! He checked our plans and the building permit to see that electrical work was done according to code.

Once electrical was approved, drywall was hung/taped/mudded. Walls were primed and painted. Prior to painting, we laid out the approximate location of cabinets (both upper and lower). This done, we saved time and paint by only covering the areas that would not be covered by cabinets. A plus to doing this step: our marks for stud locations were not painted over!

Projects of the Week #410d

Installing Glass Panel in a Cabinet Door

When designing the kitchen, Heather included glass fronts in two upper cabinets. When you do that, the cabinet companies send the doorframe (and clips) and you purchase the glass and insert it.

You may not be planning a complete kitchen remodel. However, if you want to add a focal point or just dress up your cabinets, consider adding glass inserts.

If you have a basic, paneled cabinet door, you can remove the panel from a couple of doors and replace with glass. (Optional Panels: plain glass, colored glass, stained glass, chicken wire, tin, etc.)

What You Need:

  • Cabinet frame
  • Glass insert panel
  • Clamps
  • Rotary tool and accessories: cutting wheel, cutting bit, depth guide & sanding wheel
  • Router (optional)
  • Chisel & hammer (optional)
  • Tape measure
  • Pencil
  • Straight edge
  • Rubber pad (rubberized shelf liner)
  • Glazing points
  • Putty knife
  • Flat blade screwdriver

Directions: I've done this project several times and used different methods each time - from a router, hammer & chisel, to a rotary tool - the rotary tool worked best for me.

To Remove panel:

(Remove hinges and handle from door)
  • Most panels are secured in a ¼" channel - the inside lip of this channel needs to be removed
  • Draw a line slightly wider than ¼" in from the inside edges of frame
  • Using cutting wheel on rotary tool, follow this line and make a shallow score line
  • Clamp a straight edge as a guide and use rotary tool with cutting bit & depth guide set at 1/8" and cut along scored mark (follow directions that come with rotary tool)
  • Make a second pass with depth guide set and ¼" (the normal depth of channel lip)
  • Repeat on remaining three sides
  • Remove lip from over the panel - may need to use chisel or putty knife if necessary
Push panel out of frame - if it doesn't release easily, check where it's "catching" and use a wood chisel to remove and smooth excess wood.

Sand area using drum-sanding bit on rotary tool.

Use panel as template for size of glass

  • Insert glass
  • Press glazing points around edges with flat bladed screwdriver or putty knife
  • No need to seal - however, caulk or glazing putty finishes the inside off nicely
  • Replace door hardware & rehang

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