Expanding Your Kitchen

The kitchen is a focus for many a remodeler. This room gets the most attention out of any in the house. Think about it, everyone has to eat, and with a large enough kitchen, there's usually always some traffic. That may be just the reasoning to make it bigger or add in newer, more energy conscious appliances. A complete remodel for a kitchen is usually quite expensive. You have to plan for cabinet space, countertops, sinks, new appliances and floors. You should always discuss plans with a contractor or a building inspection department if you are going to change major things, such as pipes or electrical outlets. You also want to follow all of the relevant building codes as you remodel your kitchen and schedule an inspection. It's important to make sure that you get any permits required in case you eventually plan on selling your home.

At the Start


Draw out a diagram of your kitchen or look at other kitchen plans online. You can even use a kitchen designer tool just to get an idea. You will need to measure all of your space and plan accordingly for each cabinet, sink, fridge, etc. If you plan on throwing away usable items, call up a Goodwill or Habitat for Humanity to take away old appliances or wood. You can recycle your materials this way.

You want to make sure that you disconnect the gas, plumping and electricity to your kitchen. Many times, homeowners overlook this step and end up with severe trouble. IF you are hiring a contractor, you may have to relocate for a while or simply deal without a kitchen during your remodel. You also want to make sure that you disconnect the water and drain pipes from the dishwasher and sink, the gas from the oven and the electricity from any appliances that are hard-wired to the wall.

Then you'll need to assemble all of your safety equipment, including goggles, face mask, hard hat, work gloves and boots. You will also need a rubber mallet, pry bar, crowbar, drills, rotary saw, flashlight and area light, depending on how far you plan on getting into a complete kitchen remodel.

Demolition Time


If you are expanding your kitchen or removing any walls in your way, then most certainly you are gearing up for demolition. There is a certain art to destruction so that you can safetly strip out your kitchen and minimize damage to fixtures. Here are some ways to accomplish this:

  • Turn off the electricity for the kitchen, just in case you didn't before. Remove any glass shades or panes from light fixtures, heat registers, window coverings and outlet covers that are nearby. Remove all appliances and keep a rotary saw nearby just in case.
  • Start by taking off the trim around the cabinets, windows and doors. Remove the base kitchen cabinets using a pry bar or you could use a drill. Remove the fauncets attached to sinks, back splash, any wall tils, countertops or particle board.
  • Pull out the old dry wall and plaster from the ceiling using a crowbar. Watch for any electrical wiring.
  • Take your pry bar or crow bar and pull off the plaster from the walls, managing to not disturb any electrical wiring or ductwork. Remove any insulation that is in your way, as well as nails or staples that are in the wall.
  • Remove all of the waste and prepare for new flooring, light fixtures, appliances and kitchen cabinets according to your design. You can use a shop vac to vacuum up all of the extra pieces.

Fitting It All In


It is important to measure beforehand and get a sense of what size cabinets and appliances you will need for your kitchen remodel. That's why it is so important to always draw out a blueprint of your kitchen before and after, so you know exactly what you are keeping or throwing away, how much space you will have when it's over and what kind of appliances are necessary to complete your new kitchen. You can find a bunch more of ideas for kitchen remodels online.

Amy Wright
Amy Wright is the Lead Editor of Remodeling Central. When she isn't playing with her dogs she is trying to remodel a classic Chicago style brownstone with her husband.
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