If you are considering doing your own kitchen and bath remodeling, a major part of the project is ripping out your previous cabinetry. Here are some tips that will help you make the job go smoothly.
Arrange for Getting Rid of the Debris:
Begin by figuring out how and where you’ll get rid of the old cabinets and other trash. Although you might think that you can save or re-use some of the cabinetry, generally you will end up needing to have the majority of items taken away away as trash. Call a roll off container company or make other arrangements to enable you to get the debris taken away when you’re done. Keeping the existing cabinets in your garage or some place else in the way will just make it harder when you start to install the new cabinetry.
Remove All Cabinet Doors, Drawers and Shelving:
It is usually very easy to take off the doors from your cabinetry. Take off all the doors, take out the drawers and remove any loose shelving or other unattached items from the cabinets. This will also get them to be lighter and simpler to move when you take the actual cabinets out.
Disconnect and Remove Appliances:
With the doors and shelves off it will be easier to see if there are any electrical or water connections in the cabinetry that’s connected to your appliances. Make sure to turn the water off before disconnecting items like sinks and dishwashers. And switch off the electrical breakers and any other electrical service to your kitchen while taking out the electrical appliances and cabinets.
Remove the Existing Counter Top:
Look inside the base cabinets and find the screws where the counter top is attached to them. In some instances there may also be screws holding the counter top to your back wall. Remove any kind of screws or other attachments and remove the counter tops before you start to take out the cabinets. One special thing to consider is your dishwasher. It may be simpler to uninstall and remove the dishwasher after you get rid of the countertop.
Remove the Base Cabinets First:
Once you have the counter top off and all appliances taken out, look inside of your base cabinets and remove any screws or fasteners holding them to the back wall or floor. You can make your work much easier by taking out the base cabinets before you start on the wall units. Once the base cabinets are out of the way it will be easier to get underneath the wall cabinets and hold them while they are unscrewed from the wall.
There might be toe kick strips that run full length at the bottoms of your base cabinets. It is easier if you remove these strips first before you start taking out the individual cabinets.
If your cabinets are built with face frame construction, there might be screws that connect each cabinet to the one at it’s side running through the face frame. Make sure to look for and remove these as it will make it much easier to separate each individual cabinet.
Take Down the Wall Cabinets:
After the base units are taken out, you will have to remove the screws that secure the wall cabinets to the wall. Be careful working with these and make sure you have enough help on hand to hold the cabinets as they are taken down. If you have crown molding or other trim that runs at the tops of the cabinets, get rid of this first before you begin on the individual cabinets.
Take Out Any Remaining Tall Cabinets:
You now should only have tall (floor to ceiling) cabinets left. As before, detach these from the wall. Be careful when tipping these down to move and be sure the top corners don’t catch and damage the ceiling or other fixtures. Moving these out is also a two man job so have help on hand.
Clean Up Any Leftover Items:
There might be hanging strips still connected to the wall or other items remaining from the previous cabinet installation. Take down and clean up any remaining items. If you do not intend to re-do the walls in your kitchen or bath, be as careful as you can so you don’t do any damage to the walls or sheet rock.
You may find that the floor beneath your base cabinets is lower or not covered by your existing kitchen flooring. This is often common since it is not cost effective to run expensive flooring underneath the cabinetry. But make sure to consider this when installing your new cabinets. You might want to keep some of the old shelving or parts from your old cabinets to use as buildup if you need it under the new cabinets.
Now that you have everything torn out, saved any things you can make use of and have everything else in the dumpster ready to be hauled away, your job is done. You will now be able to look things over and make sure you will be ready to install your new kitchen and bath remodeling cabinetry.
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