After putting brief updates on Facebook about my kitchen installation, I got a LOT of interest from people. I therefore thought I’d transfer the details onto my site here, with additional information and, in particular, links to those people involved.
The following are details of what happened as my existing kitchen is completely ripped out and replaced with a brand-spanking new one.
Who did we use? We’d recently bought a new sink and oven/hob from Long Eaton Appliances and had been very happy with them – it just so happens that they also install kitchens as well, as Design Works Kitchen Studio. So once we were satisfied that they got good customer feedback, we ended up going with them. The way it works, from what I can tell, is that they buy the kitchen and arrange all the people from local contractors, rather than have their own people.
I’d booked the week off work for the first week, for the second my wife was there as it was school half-term. However, the final Friday she was due to be out, so I worked from home.
Before The Installation
Boxing up your entire kitchen and finding somewhere to put it all is not fun! Particularly when you have a 6 year old’s birthday party to arrange (including the catering) on the two days before the kitchen is due to be ripped out! It was done but was stressful.
And here is how the kitchen looked…
Monday 18th May
Aka, “the day that everybody came”. The day was kicked off with two guys from Long Eaton Appliances coming and completely ripping out the existing kitchen until there was just a shell. The main organiser of the install, Wayne, then remained to complete the new plumbing. Also being removed was the old flooring, to reveal an existing tiled floor underneath.
Meantime, the skip appeared, as did Jamie, the gas fitter, Mark the electrician (with mate) and, later, Matt the plasterer (with mate). The kitchen was busy, with people working over the top of each other but they’d all worked with each numerous times before and were all very friendly.
Jamie made a bit of a mess to the ceiling as he had to divert the gas from one side of the room to the other. But that was nothing to what Mark did as he installed all the new electrics, including new lights. But that was fine because when Matt turned up later in the day, he put up new ceiling boards and did the initial “prep” for the plastering.
By the end of the day, the old kitchen was gone, the services were all sorted, a new ceiling was up and it was all ready for plastering.
Tuesday 19th May
Matt, and his mate, return to plaster the room. It only took the morning, and that’s all that happened this day. But it looked good! Well, other than that area of damp and mould in the corner (not that it was anything to do with Matt!) – it was dry and pretty much rubbed off, so I cleaned that up before the day had ended.
Whilst all of this has been happening, the kitchen fitter, Craig, has been busy building the kitchen cabinets at another location.
Wednesday 20th May
Now ready, the built cabinets are delivered and Craig starts the installation. By the end of the day, they’re all in place.
Thursday 21st May
The cabinet doors are put on today, bar the front for the built-in dishwasher, which is missing. As are the cabinet handles. The dishwasher is installed as well as the hob and extractor fan (although it doesn’t yet vent anywhere). There’s lot of other “odds and sods” to be done, at this stage the kitchen fitting is lots of small jobs.
Mark returns to install the lights, which he’d previously installed the wiring for. The LED spots and pendant are now working.
Friday 22nd May
Jamie returns to install and test the gas hob. Mark completes the electrics and Jamie completes what he can – the elusive handles and dishwasher front are still just that. By the end, though, the kitchen (and, yes, that’s blue plastic on the cabinets) is usable and we start to move our things back into it.
Tuesday 26th May
After a bank holiday weekend, the flooring people are due, so the kitchen table and fridge freezer have been removed from the room again. They come in the morning to put down a self-leveling compound, before returning the next day.
Wednesday 27th May
The floor is put down – we’ve gone for Karndean. It looks great but, when they get to the end, they find they’re about 8 tiles short. Deeply apologetic they promise to return as soon as they can to finish it off.
Thursday 28th May
The floor people return to put down the final tiles. The painter calls to say that due to another job he can’t make it until Friday afternoon but will send some people in the morning to do some “preparation”.
Friday 29th May
Craig has returned to complete his final jobs – we have a dishwasher front and cabinet handles! He’s also come to secure the plinths, now that floor has gone down, and to install a set of shelves in a corner of the room.
The painters turn up in the morning to fill some holes and to put a first coat on the ceiling. They return in the afternoon to put the first coat on the walls and to finish the ceiling. They’ll return tomorrow morning to finish it off.
Saturday 30th May
The kitchen. Is. Finished. The final coat of wall paint has gone on and the skirting boards have been glossed. It will take a good few hours for the skirting to dry so our plan is not to do much today – the kitchen has become dusty again and we don’t want to get that in the paint.
Tomorrow will be a full-scale clean and polish, as well as putting everything back into the kitchen – then a final photo!
The End Results
It’s worth mentioning the attention to details – where corners could have been cut, they haven’t. For example, the join in the working top – in the past a metal joining strip may have been used, but here the wood has been aligned perfectly together…
This extended to little things as well – the electrician leaves the screws in sockets and switched so that the slot is vertical, to reduce dust build-up.
Needless to say, we were happy. Was everything 100% right. Of course not. But when you see programs such as Cowboy Builders, Don’t Get Done Get Dom, and others, you find yourself very thankful that for such a large outlay it’s gone 99.9% to plan. And the good thing is, where something isn’t right, they’re happy to sort it.
The one thing I would say is to plan for it to take more time than they probably expect, expect a lot of disruption, dust and general mess and also triple/quadruple all the facts of any plan before it starts.
Design Works Kitchen Studio. 0115 971 7564.
Plastering (Matt) – A. M. Plastering Services. 07950 284802 / 0115 8769586.
Installation (Craig) – C T Installations. 07803 184373.
Electrics (Mark) – Eyre Electrical. 07804 799323 / 0115 8756804.
Gas (Jamie) – JD Plumbing & Heating. 07805 034145.
Painting (Aaron) – Ambience Interiors. 07966 433850.
Flooring – Meadow Vale Carpets. 01332 841001.