Saturday, February 27, 2010

Not smiling (Day 1: Prep for Demo)

This may look like a smiley face but I'm not smiling. After about a 45-minute battle with the safety rails (they used drywall anchors) I came to find what appears to be drywall under the tile. I'm hoping that I'm wrong and that I'm not going to find a big, moldy mess under the tile when I pull it out. After complaining to Thom about this he remarked, "Well, maybe this is our thing." I asked what he meant and he replied, "The one thing we find in each room we work on where we say, 'Why did they do that?'" Indeed, this may be it. Idiots.

In the meantime, I'm just doing some other prep work: removing base boards, removing hand rails, etc. I may deign to start pulling out tile on the walls today but I'm not sure I'm mentally prepared. I started to feel a little sick to my stomach this morning thinking about the project and what all can go wrong. I'm mostly going to tackle this puppy myself (with the help of Paul and Thom to do some lifting of wallboard, etc.) so I'm hoping it will be okay. I am also trying to map out a schedule of what I'm going to do and in what order. I will need to bring a plumber in because of this mess:
Once I pull out the tile wall I hope that the plumber can then reroute the plumbing through the wall so we don't have to cut a huge hole in bottom of our new vanity (which Thom assures me he will be going today to help pick out). You'll also notice there are no, I repeat, no shut-off valves. I know I could handle putting those in myself using those compression fitting kind we used in the kitchen but I do not at all feel comfortable trying out my blowtorch skills for the first time to be able to pull off running new pipes. So, this Bangor Foursquarer will be calling in a professional for the first time (well, if you don't count the floor refinishing people). I admittedly feel a little wimpy about having to do it (as well as a bit miserly) but I will certainly rest easier knowing there is not water running down my walls...and that's worth $300, right?

So, the rest of today is probably going to be dedicated to filling the coffers of the box stores. I need to get the rest of our supplies including the vanity, the beadboard, the plywood for the subfloor, and the backerboard for the tile.

Speaking of backerboard, I am feeling lured in by what appears to be a DIYer's dream - EasyMat. If you'll recall, we have quite a height differential currently going from our bathroom floor to the hallway floor. I am hoping that a thinner subfloor will help (I think it's just the old hardwood under there, but we'll see) to bring that down but I also know that installing DensShield or Hardibacker or the like plus the height of the tile will be much too much. EasyMat seems to do the trick in terms of height and ease of installation but I've read mixed reviews on the web. So, I'm torn right now. I think I've learned by now that what seems too good to be true in home repair generally is, but maybe this time I'm wrong. Any thoughts, fair readers?


Todd - Home Construction Improvement said...

Have you seen the Schluter-DITRA tile underlayment before? You can read more about it at:

I've used it in two of my homes plus several clients homes. It's easy to work with and doesn't take up quite as much height. They also well a similar product with tapes for showers.

Gretchen said...

I would also check out the Ditra!! Mike Holmes on the Holmes on Homes TV show on HGTV uses it all the time and it looks like an awesome product. I want to use it when we tackle our bathrooms.

Susie said...

Thanks, guys! I will get some of it tomorrow.