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Opening up our closets

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Posted by: from Burlington
8/28/2012 at 8:57:25 AM

We have 3 small closets and are going to be taking off the trim and doors so that it is more of an open concept and then adding in cabinetry.

Luckily in 2 rooms the closet is either flush to the wall on one side or both (making it a nicer opening when we do open it up with a little less work.) However I have some questions about the opening...

1. Is the space in the wall above the doors necessary? Can I just take it out? It looks like in all rooms the back of the wall is unfinished above the closet doorways, just 2x4 short studs connected to the ceiling and the door opening sides... think it would look better if the opening was floor to ceiling so we can add open shelving to there.

2. For the one bedroom and one side in another bedroom - the closets car partly hidden by 4-6 inches behind the framing and finished (plaster - house was built in the 70s) - how hard would it be to remove that bit of wall to make it a flush opening space?

3. The harder question - If I do it myself I know im looking at some cost for finishing material to sand and reapply surface... would I be looking at a few hundred in labour for someone to do it for us or a lot more?

Any things I should be weary of or look into first?

Cheers

T

REPLIES (7)
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Date/Time8/28/2012 at 10:13:35 AM

1) You more than likely can remove that wall, the reason its there to start with is to accomodate the door.

2) not sure about your question on that one.

3) depending on the ceiling surface, ei popcorn or smooth? if smooth do it urself, popcorn you may want to hire someone and they talk you into re-surfacing the whole room because of matching.

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Date/Time8/28/2012 at 10:36:49 AM

In most homes it would not be a problem to remove the top of the opening to the ceiling; however finishing the ceiling properly afterwards can be difficult if you are not experienced in doing this.

The removal of the side pieces should also be possible; however it could require some wood work along with drywall work again.

An onsite visit should be done to get an accurate estimate, but I would say the cost could range from $500 to $ 900. or more if the whole ceilings in the rooms need refinishing.

Hope this helps.

John

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Date/Time8/28/2012 at 12:58:53 PM

Hi Todd,

All of the work you are looking and doing yourself is very simple as long as you don't notice any headers above the openings.

I would agree with John's idea of labour for finishing the walls and ceiling after the job is done. Depending on the cabinetry that you want built for the space it may cover all of the patch work. In this case getting everything perfect in behind the cabinetry may not be necessary so doing it yourself would become an option. You would only then have to worry about making the corners of the opening perfect with a metal corner bead.

Kevin

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Dave from 360renos in Navan
Date/Time8/29/2012 at 7:19:51 AM

Good morning Todd

As mentioned by Kevin the headers could be you biggest challenge.

In the attached picture of this Kitchen renovation we completed you can see the header from the old pantry walls. We removed the walls and header above the pantry door and there is a top plate that now needs to be removed to ensure a flat ceiling.

Depending how that header is tied into the other walls will determine how much frustration and repairing you will be doing

Also you can see the plaster and lathe that now needs to be repaired from where the old pantry walls were.

Of course in your home you could take it all down and put up drywall if you wish.

Cheers

Dave

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Dave from 360renos in Navan
Date/Time8/29/2012 at 7:20:58 AM

Good morning Todd

As mentioned by Kevin the headers could be you biggest challenge.

In the attached picture of this Kitchen renovation we completed you can see the header from the old pantry walls. We removed the walls and header above the pantry door and there is a top plate that now needs to be removed to ensure a flat ceiling.

Depending how that header is tied into the other walls will determine how much frustration and repairing you will be doing

Also you can see the plaster and lathe that now needs to be repaired from where the old pantry walls were. Of course in your home you could take it all down and put up drywall if you wish.

Cheers

Dave


Opening up our closets
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Todd in Burlington
Date/Time8/29/2012 at 9:36:51 AM

Thank you so much for all the detail everyone. This is the first step of us slowly redoing rooms in our house and it helps give me a guide.

I've attached a photo of the wall above the doorway (because the builder never finished it off inside) It looks like the stud frame was built and just drilled into a pair of studs that rand up the sides of the closet...


Opening up our closets
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Date/Time8/29/2012 at 4:48:54 PM

Hey Todd,

Looks like you're in the clear. If that was a load bearing wall there would be a 2 - 2x6, at least, nailed together and place above the opening to take up any load from the structure above. Judging by the picture you should have no problems taking that out. When you are doing the other closet take the drywall of on the inside as well and look for the same scenario.

Kevin

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