LAST PHASE – UPDATING PANTRY WALL
Finally, my kitchen renovation project is completed, although minor ‘touch ups’ like replacing ceiling/wall moldings need to be done.
Dismantling the wall pantry first was in order, to be followed by removing the cabinet over the refrigerator. Next was to place the new base cabinets into position and preparing the electrical wiring for the ac outlet that was built into the backsplash of the new counter for the base cabinets. The wall cabinets over the base cabinets were next. The base and wall cabinets have pull-out trays, that will provide better storage features than the original pantry for the ease of accessing the contents.
The frig cabinet was installed a couple weeks after. Installation was a bit challenging, when securing it to the wall, ceiling and adjacent cabinet. This cabinet held two pull out trays. All trays are on full pull-out 22″ Accuride Slides.
INSTALLING WALL CABINETS
Hanging wall cabinets in the kitchen of a home with single wall construction is a serious undertaking because the cabinets have to be secured to the wall with screws. The length of these screws is very critical, because you don’t want them poking through to the other side.
Take a moment and calculate the total thickness of the cabinet’s side and back that will be against the wall. The kitchen wall is (3/4″) thick. Cabinets are built with (3/4″) thick rails between the cabinet sides at the top and bottom rear of the cabinets. The back is enclosed with a (1/4″) plywood panel stapled to the backside. This adds up to a total of (1-3/4″) of thickness that will accommodate the screws – Remember, the screws must go through half the thickness of the wall, but not go through the wall, 1-5/8″ wood screws were used. A minimum of (3) screws at the top and (2) at the bottom, One important fact to note is that we deal with earthquakes here!
CAUSE FOR RENOVATION
This is a major problem in many homes, when untreated plywood cabinets attract termites.
The original cabinets in this kitchen were made of ‘particle boards’. These materials were commonly used to make cabinets for new homes in the 60’s and 70’s, The price of particle boards are relatively “inexpensive” and are used by many cabinet manufactures, The downside of using particle boards is, that it will swell up when exposed to WATER.
The first renovation job called for replacing all the moisture – damaged bottoms and sides of the cabinets with birch plywood. Unfortunately, untreated birch plywood will in time attract termites, All the cabinets in this kitchen were damaged by termites. But, fortunately, the solid wood sections that supported the sink and granite counter top against the walls were termite free.
RENOVATION ADDS BETTER STORAGE FEATURES.
The second renovation job was a pain staking one, because the sink and granite counter tops could not be removed. Following the initial renovation, granite counter tops with full wall back splashes beneath the wall cabinets were glued to the counter tops and the walls, that prevented their displacement, to allow for the installation of the new cabinets.
CUSTOM MADE “SLIP-IN” CABINETS
The personal challenge that I had in planning for the renovation of this kitchen, was to design and build 6 cabinet units with termite treated 3/4″ white melamine cab-liners, that will fit under the counter tops. The cabinet to occupy the space under the sink, with all the plumbing remaining in place, was designed and built with a feature that is uncommon in most kitchens.
Custom designed and ready to be installed:
HOW WILL THIS LOOK UNDER THE SINK?
The 2nd phase of this renovation project was mostly concentrated on physically, not over-straining my 70+ year old body. The preparation for the installation of 3 cabinet units was much more detailed, because the two counter tops were not at the same level. Successfully installed 6 drawers and a ‘lazy susan’ unit, while enduring some physical pains..LOL!!