An Eichler kitchen under demolition

I finally got my hands dirty for the first time in this house (and not for the last time I’m afraid)!

I tore down the kitchen during the long 4th of July weekend. There’s no arguing that demolition is the most dangerous phase of remodeling. So I strongly recommend you pick up that book and follow their safety recommendations. My brand new safety glasses are already chipped – glad it’s them and not my eyes!

The kitchen cabinets were all nailed to the walls – impossible to remove them without messing up everything. Fortunately I had no intention to save the walls as I needed to expose the studs for the electrical upgrade. My technique was to chop everything in small parts and disassemble using the crowbar. The reciprocating saw is great for that. With a demolition blade it cuts through everything: wood and embedded nails, concrete and chicken wire (holding the tiles around the sink).

I almost killed myself when bringing down the cabinets that were hanging over the stovetop: they came down in one piece. And it was heavy – we’re not talking MDF here, it was thick plywood.

As for the tiles, it wasn’t that bad. Whoever laid them did a very sloppy job and didn’t bother removing the underlying linoleum. Don’t ever do this – mould was growing in between those multiple layers. Not pretty – you wouldn’t want to know that something like this exists in your kitchen…

Removing the AC unit from the wall was very painful. There again, everything was nailed (ever heard of screws?!), with rusted metal flanges inserted between the studs and the drywall sidings. No good grip to remove this in one go. Had to chop using the reciprocating saw – and a metal blade this time.

Isn’t this bare kitchen a beautiful sight? I must say that I was quite proud of myself when I eventually got the last bucket of dust out of this kitchen!

Count at least two full days to reach the studs and the concrete slab (OK, I might be slow – remember, I’m not a professional!).

The kitchen before
The kitchen as it was when we bought the house: a generous coat of spray paint covered years of mould and dirt
An Eichler kitchen under demolition
The kitchen is going down!
Kitchen, bare to the studs and concrete slab
The kitchen, bare to the studs and concrete slab – first milestone in this remodel!
(this picture was taken several days later, with the new electrical wires in place)

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