Gut the wall, or add a wall to it?

rovenorthMarch 13, 2013

Greetings all ...

I've searched for threads on this and come up empty; likewise, I've searched the Internet and found little.

I have approximately 120' of exterior walls in which *all* of the old wiring must be replaced. The walls are insulated with perfectly good blown-in insulation. Unless I'm missing something (could be), when I gut the lath and plaster I'll lose the insulation.

Sooo ...

Though I realize it will require lots more carpentry (both framing and finish), I wonder whether I'm nuts (again, could be) to consider framing new walls, attaching the new walls to the old walls, and running the new wiring through the new walls. In the cold Pacific Northwest, this also would provide me with the opportunity of doubling insulation values by insulating the new wall too.

Anyone out there have experience with this?

Many thanks ...

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Ron Natalie

What makes you think you have to gut the walls to run new wiring? If you have cellar and attic access most of the time you can do the work with a few well placed holes that can be patched later.

    Bookmark   March 14, 2013 at 9:29AM
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randy427

The old wiring does not have to be removed. Done properly, it can be abandoned in place.

    Bookmark   March 14, 2013 at 10:32AM
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rovenorth

Thanks for your replies, ronna and randy ...

Yes, for sure, I'm aware the old wiring can be abandoned in place. As for access, yes from the cellar but no from the attic.

I think you're both suggesting that gutting isn't necessary. This has occurred to me too. That stated, I've read here and there that cutting access holes and then replastering can be more of a bother than just tearing down the old lath and plaster, wiring, and putting up new rock.

Keeping the project as simple and ***quick*** as possible are the highest priorities for me. As I wrote previously in the "Am I nuts?" category, maybe the idea of adding new wall to old wall is waaay off base.

Thanks!

    Bookmark   March 14, 2013 at 12:07PM
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geoffrey_b

"I've read here and there that cutting access holes and then replastering can be more of a bother than just tearing down the old lath and plaster, wiring, and putting up new rock. "

Tearing out lath & plaster is really a mess. Also you would have to remove and reinstall the baseboard and door/window trim. Then you have to install sheet rock, tape it, and paint the entire room - this is a BIG job.

Adding a new wall is also foolish - the window/door jams would be too narrow.

With a tool like a Rotozip, one can cut near perfect holes in walls. There are remodeling boxes made for this specific purpose.

    Bookmark   March 14, 2013 at 1:08PM
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Ron Natalie

The "we can't patch real plaster, put drywall in" is a gigantic cop out on people who won't hire the specialized people (or develop the skill themselves). There's no great issue with patching lath/brown coat/finsh coat plaster other than it's a bit more time consuming but it's not going to be longer than ripping out ALL the old plaster and lath and drywalling it.

    Bookmark   March 14, 2013 at 6:32PM
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ionized_gw

" There's no great issue with patching lath/brown coat/finsh coat plaster "

Agreed. We just has a whole room resurfaced with three coats with some holes patched (can lights removed and junction boxes covered) with several patches in other rooms. The cost was surprisingly reasonable. This was rock lath. Get some idea of what it might cost before you decide. It is getting difficult to find plasterers.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2013 at 2:55PM
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