Bathroom Remodel – Installment Three – The Reconstruction

You’ve seen the before, you’ve seen the demolition, now you can enjoy the trials and tribulations of trying to build a bathroom when the walls, floors and ceiling are not level, plumb or square.  DJ spent a great deal of time working to make things right in order to make the installation easier and to make the room look great.

He took a week off work in February while Wendell was away visiting his dad, and we accomplished a great deal of work during this time.  Even so, doing the work on weekends and some evenings after work, we didn’t complete the work until the last weekend of April.  Not that we were in any great hurry, we wanted to do the job correctly.  And, we would have been done in early April, but we had one really horrible “Oh Shit” moment with the tile, which you will see in the pictures.

With everything stripped out of the bathroom, the first thing we worked on updating was the electrical and plumbing.  I don’t have pictures of the plumbing, but you can take my word that new shut off valves were put on the sink and tub.  The tub drain had to be rerouted to fit the new tub.  Wiring needed to be moved to accommodate a ceiling exhaust fan and light, and added GFCI outlets.  Then the fun began!

The new, 66 inch tub was the first thing to be installed.  After measuring and leveling and screwing in the stringer, we placed the tub.  I know you can't read the level, but it is level.  But see the large gap on the left?

The new, 66 inch tub was the first thing to be installed. After measuring and leveling and screwing in the stringer, we placed the tub. I know you can’t read the level, but it is level. But see the large gap on the left?  Apparently the floor was not as close to level as we first thought.

Close up of the gap.  This was resolved by unscrewing the stringer and lowering it, and cutting into the sub-floor on the right.  The tub ended up with a slight downhill slope to the left to reduce the gap and ensure the thing would drain.

Close up of the gap. This was resolved by unscrewing the stringer and lowering it, and cutting into the sub-floor on the right. The tub ended up with a slight downhill slope to the left to reduce the gap and ensure the thing would drain.

While DJ built the frame for the pocket door, I stained and finished the door, as well as stained and finished the trim and moulding.

While DJ built the frame for the pocket door, I stained and finished the door, the trim and moulding.

Inside view of the wall built to house the pocket door.  I selected a door with a mirror on both sides...I'm so clever!

Inside view of the wall built to house the pocket door.  I selected a door with a mirror on both sides…I’m so clever!

View of the pocket door from the hallway.

View of the pocket door from the hallway.

Next, DJ had to provide framing to screw in the drywall for the ceiling, which also served to level the ceiling.  And he installed the fan/light.

Next, DJ had to provide framing to screw in the drywall for the ceiling, which also served to level the ceiling. And he installed the fan/light.

The toilet was taken out so the drywall could be put up.

The toilet was taken out so the drywall could be put up.

But first the wall heater installation was completed.

But first the wall heater installation was completed.

The wall heater and GFCI outlets are below the window.

The wall heater and GFCI outlets are below the window.

After the drywall was put in, my job was filling screw holes and taping seams.

After the drywall was put in, my job was filling screw holes and taping seams.

I did not tape the corners since they would be covered with moulding and trim to compensate for not being plumb and square.

I did not tape the corners since they would be covered with moulding and trim to compensate for not being plumb and square.

One of the more difficult tasks was putting up the Swanstone shower walls.  DJ's dad come over and helped cut, carry, glue, place and brace the walls.

One of the more difficult tasks was putting up the Swanstone shower walls. DJ’s dad came over and helped cut, carry, glue, place and brace the walls.

Meanwhile, I finished filling and sanding the drywall.

Meanwhile, I finished filling and sanding the drywall.

And once the drywall was prepped, I painted.

And once the drywall was prepped, I painted.

After I painted, we pulled up the old vinyl floor, and used it as a template to cut the new vinyl.  Then the toilet was re-installed, and the light fixture put in place.

After I painted, we pulled up the old vinyl floor, and used it as a template to cut the new vinyl. Then the toilet was re-installed, and the light fixture put in place, as well as outlet covers and the heater cover.

The pocket door was taken down and the hole for the lock was drilled.

Like my painting clothes?

After the tub walls were in place, DJ finished plumbing for the shower.  The strip above the back wall in the shower is where the tile would be installed.

After the tub walls were in place, DJ finished plumbing for the shower. The strip above the back wall in the shower is where the tile would be installed.

After I set the tile and grouted it, we prepared to put up the trim.  However, when we taped the trim in place, our big “Oh Shit!” moment occurred when the tape peeled the design off the tile.  We had no idea how to fix the problem short of ripping all the tile out.  In a controlled panic, I sent pictures to the manufacturer, asking what we needed to do.  He said we had to replace the entire strip, but he would be sending them to us at no cost because he found out there was a defect in our product as well as another job processed at the same time as ours.  It was no easy chore removing tile, fortunately, we only had 13 to remove.

It took over a week to get the replacement tile, and then a couple of days to set it, grout it, and seal it.  Once that was complete, we finished putting up the trim, and did NOT use tape.  Then came the caulking, and other finish work.  I bet you’re dying to see the finished product!

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