January 17, 2012

Why did I Think Our Basic Remodel Would be Easy (and cheap)?

We're remodeling our kitchen.

Well, we're changing up our kitchen hoping for it to LOOK remodeled.

I've done all my research online.

After realizing that one of our projects (the ONLY practical project, the range hood) was going to be less DIY friendly than we thought, I pulled up my trusty sidekick, Yelp, and starting trying to find people to help.

But seriously, WTF!?

HVAC guys don't want to do the job because it is too small and said to call a handyman.

Handymen don't want the job because it is too complicated.

The ones that DO want the job just don't seem to be thinking outside the box like we want them to. Yes, we understand that MOST people rip apart their kitchen for a $50,000 remodel. We aren't doing that. Can you help us? No, we won't be putting in new cabinets. Sorry, not happening. Do you still want THIS job.

Contractors don't want the job either - way too small for them.

So, our kitchen has been completely ripped up for four days now. No counter top, open walls. You know. The good stuff. All because we want a range hood.

Because I cook everything on super high. Roasted Vegis? Best at 450 degrees. Steak? 500 in the oven, then SUPER HIGH on the stove, then back in at 500 degrees. When I make my chicken stock, I cook it for at least 10 hours. Every window in the house is sweating after two hours and the whole house smells like chicken. The smoke alarms in our house go off EVERY time I cook. And the house fills with smoke. So, unlike the new countertops, the new cabinet hardware, and my open shelving - the range hood is the ONLY practical or needed component to this "remodel."

So, I have to give Sears a high five.

They are the only site (compared to Best Buy, Home Depot, and Lowes) that recognized that someone might want to mount an "under cabinet" range hood without a cabinet.

We don't have cabinets there. I don't want cabinets there. We also don't have a duct coming down from the ceiling which would make a regular "wall mount" range hood do-able.

When I finally realized that Sears had this as a search option (undercabinet/wall mount), it became clear that Kenmore brand was for us. But, we already had a Nutone/Broan Range Hood sitting in our living room that we had purchased yesterday from Home Depot.

Anyway, long story short: After 3+ days of internet searching for the right range hood, I realized that most under cabinet ranges are compatible with wall mounting kits.

1) Why didn't ANYONE at Home Depot know this?

2) Why couldn't I find this anywhere in my search? I pride myself on my googlebilities and I failed big time at this one. Well, I suppose I didn't fail, but my search terms genius didn't help me on this one. I only found out after reading a review on a Kenmore range hood that complained that Sears forgot to give him the wall mounting kit.

So, Bubbs has one more week before starting work and we put T in school this whole week so we could get this done. We ended up calling the guy who installed our new furnaces (who we liked a lot and was fairly affordable) and he's coming to check it out on Wednesday. I have NO idea how much this is going to cost us. We already have a duct (an old stove duct) - which is apparently lined with ceramic? that we want to use. It needs to be moved up six inches to be usable. We also have knob and tube wiring - so someone's gotta hot wire the range hood to that.

This means our drywall installation is going to be set back to the weekend. Which sucks because I'm working all weekend. So it puts us even further out.

What's left?

Drywall backsplash

rebuild cabinet over dishwasher
rebuild window sill
Cut sink hole
install sink and faucet into butcherblock
install countertop
seal countertop (is there really one spelling of seal for both words?)
seal sink
Tile backsplash

Move outlet from next to stove to behind stove and to the left

stove wall
To the left of all the knives there is a vent cover - see it? It is actually working ducting - but just a little too low.

And, the only outlet on that wall is next to the stove on the right. We want to move it behind the stove to the left so we can plug in the coffee maker, toaster, and microwave on our open shelving.

Move ducting up 6 inches
Wire Range Hood
Install Range Hood
Drywall up the wall

Paint the wall
Install brackets
Cut the butcher Block in two - hotdog style (as opposed to hamburger style)
Hang open shelving
Remove cabinet doors
sand down and repaint areas that are chipped or too thick
install new hinges and hardware

That's all.

Oh, and our sink is here. And it is beautiful. It came with its own fabric bag and monogrammed cleaning towel.

Wow - that is one all over the place mash up of things.

Guess I'm tired.

Now. That's all.

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