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  • Jeff Chaignot

Kitchen Remodel Advice

Updated: Apr 27, 2023

If you are thinking of remodeling your kitchen and you are not sure of what is involved, here is some advice to help you get started. This will also help you pick the right remodel contractor so you are not stuck with unexpected costs or a kitchen that is torn apart for months on end. Remodeling is not as simple as just measuring between the walls and ordering new cabinets, there is much, much more involved. Most issues usually are found after the old cabinets are removed and you can see what is underneath or behind them. Below is a picture of a kitchen after the cabinets have been removed.

Kitchen remodel after removal of old cabinets
Previous Kitchen Remodel

A: Matching the Footprint

Most builders in Arizona lay tile after cabinets are installed, which means the tile in your home likely does not extend underneath the cabinets. In a remodel where flooring is not being replaced, it's important to hire a cabinet expert who knows how to precisely match the tile footprint. Many cabinet companies do not offer custom cabinet sizes, which can leave you with gaps in the flooring or unsightly molding used to "hide" the gaps. Be sure to choose an expert that will properly match the tile footprint. The last thing you want is to end up replacing a floor unexpectedly.

B: Electrical Wiring

If you have an island, most likely you have an electrical plug on one end or both ends. This wire is coming out of the concrete underneath the cabinet somewhere. If this wire is damaged during the removal process it could be very costly to repair. You cannot just cut and splice it back together again under the cabinet. Also, all wiring inside the cabinet must be done in conduit to be up to code.

C: Plumbing

Usually before you remove the cabinets all you can see of your plumbing is just the drain and the hot and cold shut off valves. In Arizona, most of the time the valves will not turn off and they will need to be replaced. Usually these are replaced after the old cabinets have been removed for easier access. You must take plenty of measurements to make sure the plumbing will be in the right place inside the new cabinet as well as the height of the drain from the floor if you are doing a deeper sink.

D: Appliances

Before you order cabinets for your new kitchen you must have the specifications of your new appliances for several reasons. If you are changing from a built in a appliance to a free standing or vice versa, you will most likely need to have the electrical moved as well as cabinet dimensions may change. Also, if you are going to a chimney hood from a microhood the vent will need to be exactly centered in the hood opening.

E: Under Cabinet Lighting

Most homeowners now days are adding lighting underneath the upper cabinets when they do a kitchen remodel. This requires planning ahead of time to make sure all the wires are located in the right spots. The best time to do this is after the old cabinets have been removed and before the new cabinets are installed.

F: Ceiling Lighting

Always watch for lights in the soffit interfering with deeper cabinets. Also, some lights hang down slightly and the cabinet doors may hit them when they open. If you are planning on installing pendant lights or other ceiling lights in the kitchen make sure you know exactly where all the new cabinets will be placed before you install.

These are just some of the things your kitchen remodeling company should be looking at before they order your cabinets and countertops. Once your old cabinets are removed it is too late to make changes and you are stuck with additional expenses. Remodels are completely different than new builds. When you are installing in a new build you can see all the plumbing and electrical before you even order the cabinets.

Check out more remodel information on our web page

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