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All you need to know before embarking your DIY Renovation Journey Part 6 – 6 more Renovation Lessons which every DIY homeowner should know

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Last week, we have shared the 6 renovation lessons which every DIY homeowner should know. So this week, let us share with you another 6 more renovation lessons which we thought you ought to keep a look out for.


1. “Installables” 

Get all the list of items which you need to be installed ready at hand

It is especially important to get all the items that need to be installed ready before the carpentry begins. This is because the carpenter requires all the measurements to be confirmed before the carpentry fabrication starts. Furthermore, the contractor also need to gauge the amount of time and effort needed to complete all the installation.

List of “installables” includes the following:
Ceiling Fans;
Kitchen Fittings;
Wall Hangers;
Shower Fittings and;
Magnetic Door Stoppers.

Case in point

We under-estimated the delivery time needed for our ceiling fans. As a result, our oversight caused over a week of delay of the renovation schedule.


2. Carpentry Symbol Lines

Understand what the symbol lines means

Find out what the symbol lines means. This is because you would be able to suss out any mistakes earlier before the carpentry fabrication takes place.

Image from revit-content

Know the meaning of the symbol lines since they have implications to your carpentry

The sample image above is from The dotted lines >< refers to the way the cupboard doors will open and hence, impacts where the hinges are installed. The red rectangles represents the location of the hinges. Where the hinges are installed, a partition has to be built. Hence, the left cupboard has longer shelves (in blue) when compared to the right cupboard, which has shorter shelves (in green). Therefore, this design meant that you could not place heavy items for the right cupboard as the longer shelves would warp. The symbols for the middle cupboard indicates that sliding doors would be installed and no hinges are used for sliding doors.


3. Laminate

Perform a 360 appraisal on your chosen laminate 

After getting your hands on the laminate (by ordering online or visiting the laminate factories), you need to perform a thorough 360 appraisal on the chosen laminate.

Do you know?
Abuse the laminate sample to see how it can withstand the daily wear and tear!

Perform the following tests:
1. Scratch the laminate with sharp objects to test its durability;
2. Stain the laminate with ink, pen markings and so on to see how easily it can be cleaned off and;
3. Bend and wrap the laminate to see if it is easily bent or chipped.

Case in point

We got EDL to demonstrate the resiliency of one of their product range and here is what they did!


4. Walk-through

Perform a visual wall through of the feasibility of the carpentry design on-site

After the carpentry sketch was done up, we did multiple walk-through of all “movable parts” of the design to gauge the feasibility of the carpentry. The intention is to ensure that the daily lifestyle can be carried out smoothly.  These usually include the cupboard, wardrobe casement doors and movable customized tables or drawers.

Case in point
The original proposed design for the living room cupboard comes with 2 doors which will knock against the sofa. The initially proposed 2 top wardrobe casement doors will hit against the ceiling fan. In the end, these designs were revised to 3 doors instead. Furthermore, the floor storage platform doors will knock against the popped out wall electrical sockets. In the end, they are changed into recessed sockets.

In addition, when we also did a mock run through of the movable chest of wardrobe drawers and found out that the pullout drawers might slide out when we move the chest of wardrobes over the sliding wardrobe tracks. In the end, our Project Manager proposed an ingenious cheap solution to keep the drawers in place.

A “tic tac” mechanism was used to secure the drawers


5. Bathroom Exhaust System

Installation of the bathroom exhaust system

The bathroom exhaust system is important to keep the bathroom well ventilated and free of humidity. We have to get the exhaust system installed at the false ceiling since the installation is not allowed at the bathroom windows. Although we checked with quite a few other contractors, they were unable to assist us.  Nevertheless in the end, with some help from our project manager, we got our problems resolved at the TDK showroom.  Details of what we brought for the ceiling exhaust system installation will be shared in our subsequent blog post. So what is the lesson learnt here? Never give up! Keep a look out for the brands used! This will give you clues to start the research.

TDK exhaust fan for the bathroom toilet. Powerful, efficient but silent operation.


6. Status check

Perform on-site checks regularly!

If your deadline is very tight, it is imperative that you visit the renovation site frequently to ensure that the progress is smooth and on track. This is because although your project manager will check the progress, he might not be able to visit on-site as often if he has multiple projects to attend to. Doing this will help speed up the rectification process if any problems are discovered.

Case in point?

We made a night visit the moment the carpentry works were completed and we glad that we did. This is because we noticed that the wrong laminate was used for the floor storage platform! Hence, we were able to inform the project manager immediately. He had originally scheduled to check the status the following morning but because of our early notice, he was able to get the rectification works scheduled the very next morning.

Wrong laminate colors were used for the floor storage platform!


Next Post: All you need to know before embarking your DIY Renovation Journey Part 7 – 6 Problems Encountered and DIY Solutions which Every Homeowner should Know


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