Operation Heart of the Home – Gas Range edition
The kitchen came with this glass down draft stove cook top. I can’t really say that it was horrible because it wasn’t. It was just fine. peachy. a-ok.
BUT….(you saw that one coming didn’t you?!)…
it wasn’t new or exactly my cup of tea. I know that sounds super bratty. I can hear the screeching nails on the chalkboard in the statement. So you’ll have to forgive me and my first world problems.
The glass cooktop was in much worse shape when we first bought the house…it had a buildup of baked on food particles that created a 3D effect similiar to a topographical map. The rings around the burners were like little mountain chains ready for seasonal skiers. I scraped with a straight razor and cleaned and scraped some more. Most of it cleaned up ok but there was evidence of it’s past life and the down draft really wasn’t functional and there was only one large burner so I always just stuck with cooking in one pan.
But I was not about to spend a thousand dollars on a new stove top. No. I don’t have gold bars laying around. If I did, I probably would go straight to Willy Wonka’s factory and get my everlasting gobstopper 🙂
Without the moolah on hand, we scheduled this project to phase 3 of our kitchen transformation and didn’t blink an eye.
Then the unbelievable happened. We were perusing the aisles of Lowe’s when we saw the clearance section of appliances (did you know there was a clearance section? it’s a magical place I tell ya) and I spied a gas stove top. I thought the price was a joke. All of the other ones were marked down from 1200 to 800…not $344. So I immediately picked it up and walked over to Jer put it in the cart (which was a giant blue race car that Will was driving). I put it in like it was a can of spray paint….casual-like and trying not to draw attention….hoping that Jeremy wouldn’t notice the extra $344 on our checkout bill.
He’s the logical one of course….so he was all like “umm…let’s google it first”.
After it passed the ‘Jeremy-google-test’, I became like a defensive end for the Patriots….blocking random people in the aisles as we headed to the checkout girl.
I was really excited to get the backsplash done because that meant that our cooktop could be officially installed. (see the old backsplash up there? I’ve been sitting on this bad boy for a long time!)
Since the cooktop is a gas one, I called in the pros. That’s my brother and his back end. He is a licensed plumber and works with gas all the time so he was the obvious choice for my cooktop installation. Oh and he’s free for me because of the whole blood thing and I know lots of embarrassing information from his youth 🙂
The existing glass stove top was a downdraft…meaning that the center part of the cooktop there is a vent built into it. The engine below the cooktop sucks the air down and through the ducts to push the steam and smells outside. I grew up with a down-draft (it’s what my parents have in their home even till this day) so I never really gave it second thought. And then I had a regular overhead exhaust hood at our other house. Here’s the old post about that bad boy. It changed my life.
Not really…but I did realize how much more I like the overhead version. They just work better. The steam naturally rises so the downdraft always has to work ridiculously hard and doesn’t naturally get all that moisture or the smells. It’s easier to catch a fish as it swims downstream people.
So I would not miss that about this stove top. I also was ridiculously excited to cook with gas. From everything that I’ve heard, cooking with gas is faster, easier and heats more evenly. And Jeremy can attest that I need all the help I can get in the kitchen 🙂
After Jeremy unplugged the stove top and disconnected it from the duct work, it was time to remove the old to get ready for the new…
Then it was time to cut the granite for the new cooktop.
Yes, you read that correctly….we must CUT the GRANITE.
When I realized that fact, I was all like Sandra Bullock….nonononono! stopthisbus! ohwaitI’mfallinginlovebutabouttodie! I may or may not have called out Keanu’s name just for kicks.
My brother brought his grinder…another reason why we wanted him to come…he has fun tools 🙂
We put down Frog Tape to mark the lines on the granite and to help reduce chipping.
We drew directly on the tape to have the unit centered on the cabinet.
Then Brad used the grinder to go over the lines while Jer held the shop vac. It got dusty. REALLY dusty.
Over and over on the lines…the key was to go slow and steady.
oh and expect the floors and walls and eveything to be covered in black dust.
Here it was after the lines were cut about three times each.
Then we used a hammer to tap the granite until the crack got bigger and bigger as the cut piece fell away.
Eventually the crack got so large that the piece set loose and came off in their hands. Ours actually broke in two so that shows how easily stone can break!
Then Brad cleaned up the corners….before they looked like this:
He simply removed the little plywood piece beneath the countertop and used the grinder to clean up the corner.
This was after he did one side. Then they did the other side.
When it came to installation of the new cooktop, I left it up to the pro.
He used a liberal amount of pipe sealant to the threads of the pipe that extends from the new cooktop then screwed it to the regulator.
After it was all attached under the cabinet, we had the stovetop functional.
Let’s take a look under the cabinet, shall we? When we first installed the unit, there were three different things under there. The silver metal one was electrical for the previous cooktop (it’s since been removed and boxed), the regular plug wire (newer cooktops have electrical version of a pilot light so they need plugged in), and the yellow line (that is gas).
Okay – now for the before…
The only small issue that we have now is the support on the backside and covering the small crack showing. The new stove top was wider but not as deep as the previous one. So that meant that we had to install the new one as far forward as possible – allowing it to sit on the granite on three sides while the backside was left unsupported and with a quarter inch gap. (don’t worry! We solved this problem with $1 and a few 2×4’s!)
So that is our new stove top situation. Pretty great, huh?! I’m just pumped that the unit was so affordable and installation was free. Pinching those pennies! And I’m thrilled to be cooking with gas. And not the kind that leafy green veggies, fiber and pregnancy.
p.s. This is a sponsored post brought to you by FrogTape for Bower Power’s Frog Tape Fridays. The opinions are completely my own based on my experience.