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Thread: Surviving a Kitchen Remodel

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    874

    Surviving a Kitchen Remodel

    We will be having our kitchen remodeled and expect to have no use of it for 8 to 10 weeks. My wife cooks a lot and she will want some temporary facilities. The biggest concerns are the sink and stove.

    There is a laundry sink in the basement but that's going to be too far. There is a pedestal sink in the bathroom but that's in the bathroom so no counter space.

    It will be winter so grilling will be limited. Yes we will have the microwave.

    Suggestions?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    SE PA - Central Bucks County
    Posts
    49,993
    When I did ours back in 2003, I setup a temporary "kitchen" in the great room by rolling the big mobile kitchen island in there (it served as the prototype for the cabinetry so was already build prior to the renovation) and put the microwave, toaster oven and an induction hot plate in there for meal preparation. We still have that induction hot plate for emergency use should our range go out for some reason. You can use other electric appliances similarly...crock pot, etc. Just be sure to pick out separate circuits when you need to use more than one at a time...tray tables can be your friend to support things in that case. We did use the grill a lot and although that was summer time back then, I've routinely used the grill on the patio outside our kitchen even in the winter. It's not necessarily pleasant, but doable.

    Water/washing is certainly more of a challenge. Because I was doing my own work, I bought a cheap laundry sink and was able to actually leave it in place in the kitchen after demolition since the sink location wasn't changing and the plumbing was in place. It was there for all bout about a week and a half. In your situation, you may want to consider splitting duty between the powder room for convenience with small things and water access with carting things you absolutely must wash to the laundry sink, despite the distance. Use disposable plates and cutlery so you keep cleaning to a minimum. You could also arrange with a friendly neighbor to occasionally run a load in their dishwasher for things you want and need to sanitize.
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  3. #3
    When i remodeled our kitchen it took me over a year. We had vestigial pieces for most of the time, but they were sometimes in the living room. It was rough. We ate a lot of pizza. Fortunately we have a laundry room right next to the kitchen with a double dowl sink.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Evanston, IL
    Posts
    1,282
    We bought an electric frying pan and a pressure cooker to prepare what we could, ordered out a lot, and had a plastic tub for dirty dishes that we carried to the basement to wash up in the laundry tub. Not ideal. Good luck with the remodel.

  5. #5
    My kitchen remodel took years, as it was a gut to the studs and I built all the cabinets with only a circ saw and router for power tools, and did that and all the other work by myself. It was a pain, especially since I was working long hours at my day job. As you say, the sink is the worst. I left the old sink in place as long as possible, working around it, and then moved it (several times) to different areas of the kitchen space as needed, using flex hookups for the water and drain. It wasn't ideal, but it was workable.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Tacoma, WA
    Posts
    208
    When I remodeled the kitchen it took many many months. First thing I did was remove the island with range top and hood above, re ducted the roof top fan (new fan) to location of new hood, and patched ceiling.

    Right before I had oak flooring installed which extended through the kitchen, I removed all remaining cabinets except base cabinet for the sink. When the floor was finished I covered it with cardboard.

    Then I made some modifications to the wiring and gas lines, cleaned up the sheetrock, painted, and then moved some of the existing cabinets back into the kitchen and some of the counter top. Some cabinets had to be modified like the one for the new cook top. I used a sawzall to make modifications where necessary and I bought two temporary ikea cabinets, one for the double oven and another base cabinet. All upper cabinets were removed. I temporarily installed the new double oven, refrigerator, cook top, and dish washer while continuing to work on the walls and wiring.

    The day before installing the finished cabinets I removed the range top, refrigerator, double oven, dishwasher, and all temporary cabinets including the sink. Then I replumbed and rewired for the new sink at the same location as the old but different orientation and patched the sheetrock. The new cabinets were then installed in one day. Next day the counter top was in place and I reinstalled the appliances.

    I lived with the temporary kitchen for quite a while. I was able to modify the old existing laminate counter top by using heat gun to remove laminate where necessary and reapplying it. Some temporary counter top was just plywood and some was supported by stools until I had the final cabinets ready to install.

    I had an adjacent laundry room that had counter top and cabinets which made some things a little more doable. Basically, I reduced the kitchen to bare minimum but with functioning appliances while continuing to work in the area. There was quiet a lot of work involved to move small areas of wall, wiring and circuits for new lighting, appliances, LED circuits for under cabinet lighting, gas lines, some plumbing, and range top venting.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    874
    My hat is off to those of you who did most of the work yourself and took months. That would be harrowing. We are having almost all done by 1 company (using subs whom they will manage). This should be relatively easy except for the temporary accommodations.

    Jim
    The hotplate is a great idea, we can probably borrow one.

    This morning we walked thru it and decided to set up the temporary kitchen in the basement, where there is plenty of room and some work and eating surfaces. The only real downside is the refrigerator which will remain upstairs. I'll have to ask around to borrow a small one. (trying to not acquire anything we won't need later)

  8. #8
    When i did ours one thing led to another, then another than another. I built all the cabinets from scratch to match the space, and a lot of them I had to build in place. My house is over a hundred years old so there were lots of surprises. I had planned on exposing the original brick walls but they did not look like I wanted them to so i installed brick veneer. I then had to relocate a vent stack. I then found I still had live K&T wiring, so I had to fix that. At the time I was learning to weld so I was making light fixtures, a big pot rack, a gate, a few other things for one night a week in my welding class. I then found dry rot in the floor joists and had to reinforce those before I could install a heavy stone floor and concrete counters.

    Good luck. I really hope yours is smoother.

  9. #9
    The hotplate is a great idea, we can probably borrow one.
    And pick up an instant pot if you don't already have one, they are very versatile and you can make a wide variety of one-dish meals.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Location
    Minnesota
    Posts
    238
    I remember my mom washing dishes in the bathtub when I was young and my parents remodeled.

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Bender View Post
    We will be having our kitchen remodeled and expect to have no use of it for 8 to 10 weeks. My wife cooks a lot and she will want some temporary facilities. The biggest concerns are the sink and stove.

    There is a laundry sink in the basement but that's going to be too far. There is a pedestal sink in the bathroom but that's in the bathroom so no counter space.

    It will be winter so grilling will be limited. Yes we will have the microwave.

    Suggestions?
    I'm surprised that nobody so far has suggested fasting. Check out Jason Fung's book "The Complete Guide to Fasting". You will feel great! This is what I do when I can't grill or I can't get any decent barbecue.

    I think the record is over 200 days or something, with no ill effects. That gives you a lot of leeway, with your schedule.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Lewiston, Idaho
    Posts
    27,073
    Our kitchen remodel included a bump out and total window replacements in the whole house. My wife set up a temporary kitchen in the basement family room and we used the sink in the attached bathroom. Using a small electric oven she bought, an electric skillet and a microwave we managed to survive 5 months without a full kitchen.
    Ken

  13. #13
    We are about to start ours too. Misery loves company.

    Here's your excuse to get a smoker. An electric one can be used in the garage for those inclement days.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    SE PA - Central Bucks County
    Posts
    49,993
    To be clear, the "hot plate" I recommend is induction, not the old coil type, for both safety and efficiency. InstantPot and other types of slow/pressure electric appliances are also great for one pot meals and many of the things they excel at are great for winter eating, too. If you pre-prepare meals and freeze in vacuum bags, you can heat them up in a water bath. A toaster oven with convection and/or an air fryer can do a lot of things, too. There are SO many ways to eat well during this period of time. The biggest challenge is clean up so again, despite the impact to trash and recycling, use disposable dinner ware and utensils to keep the cleanup manageable.
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  15. #15
    None of you guys have an RV?
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    CASmate, Corel, Gravostyle


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