Get rid of wall oven to increase counter space?

akl_vdbJuly 21, 2012

I've read so much on here over the past few months, had a difficult time registering but finally did and now I have a question.

We have a wall oven on one side of the kitchen, and the cooktop on the other. I was thinking that to increase counter space, I could get rid of the wall oven and just put a free standing range where the cooktop is. This would break up that long bank of cabinets, and I have the range hood there.

Now the question is, where do I stop? The cabinets are in good shape. I don't think I need an overhaul. But then I look at all the beautiful kitchens here, and well, I don't know. I do want quartz counter and probably a cast Iron sink (or the silgranite, whatever goes well with the counter) and just want to tidy up the whole thing.

I don't want to do a mini facelift when maybe in a few years I'd want to gut the thing. Overall I'm happy with the layout, except the stove is so far away from the sink. I do like the corner pantry, even though I hear they are space hogs.

I have no room for the island I'd love to have, and I'm not tearing down walls.

If you could give me some advice on what would look good, should I wait, anything is appreciated.

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akl_vdb

Must figure how to post multiple pics in one posting. Here's the other side.
Thanks for looking!

    Bookmark   July 21, 2012 at 3:56PM
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cam349

I don't think putting in a range and taking out the wall oven would do much for you. What would you use that extra space to the left of the sink for? Not ideal for food prep. You'd probably end up cluttering up the new space with small appliances that are better off stored away until needed.

If you want to spice up your kitchen I'd add some nice backsplash tile to both sides of the room. With the new countertops and sink it would look great. I would encourage you to think of adding trim around the window and entrance door as they seem unfinished. A nice roman shade or wood blinds would warm up the sink area as well. Overall the kitchen does look in good shape and the cabinets don't seem dated to me so I'd make the space work around them.

As well since you're replacing the counter consider extending it out 12" to create seating on the peninsula.

    Bookmark   July 21, 2012 at 5:06PM
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cindyinct

I could see getting rid of it. I would maybe use it for a coffee pot, plus it's close to the fridg so it could be a sandwich making counter. I always like as much counter space as I can get. But if you are going to gut it in a few years, I might leave it as is. Good luck, tough decision.

    Bookmark   July 21, 2012 at 8:03PM
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akl_vdb

Thanks for the different perspectives. I'm not sure what to do. On one hand, we are so lucky to have such a wonderful house/kitchen that I feel like I'm crazy for wanting to do anything. Then I see some wonderful kitchens or look at beautiful cabinets and I want it all!

Cam349- ya, I would move our Keurig over and have that counter space and probably more dishes on top of the counter. It is quite handy with a family and being in the kitchen for what seems like hours a day to have extra.

Cindyinct- I don't want to gut it, but then I see these awesome cabinets, and I want to tear down the whole thing! I want to enjoy the space, and would love to just get a new counter/sink/backsplash, but then I worry about wanting to do something else in the future that I might regret doing a short term fix now, kwim?

Here's a pic of looking beyond the kitchen, we have an eat in area.

    Bookmark   July 21, 2012 at 9:31PM
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andreak100

So, if you get rid of the wall oven, where is your microwave going to go? Is it going to sit on the counter area you just created? So, you actually have no additional counterspace then, right? Or are you going to buy a microhood as well? And is the range and microhood combo what you want for when you redo the kitchen or are these appliances you'll use for just a few years and then toss?

Also, it looks like you have a heat run under your cooktop - so, you'll need to move that if you put a range there.

I think the "few" changes you mentioned are going to wind up being significantly more costly than what you are likely to benefit.

Honestly, I think you're just getting wanderlust. Why are you going to spend thousands of dollars and go through the remodeling pain for a mini-makeover that isn't really going to benefit you much? Maybe I'm too practical and can't see putting out that expense when you already said that you plan on redoing the entire kitchen in a few years.

Just my opinion, but I think it's wasteful of materials and money at this point - the kitchen looks fairly functional overall and I'd put the money aside and start gathering ideas for when you completely redo the kitchen.

    Bookmark   July 22, 2012 at 9:30AM
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akl_vdb

Thank you for the response.
Ok, I do not want to gut the kitchen. I really do not. It would be so much work, and it's fine.
What I really want is a new counter/sink and backsplash. But then I think, hmm, what if I move this over here, and that over there? Our quote for the counter and sink was $5600, plus backsplash. I I could handle doing that then in 10 years if I needed a change, well, we enjoyed it for 10 years. The cabinets are so durable, and with a 2 year old around, well, you know. Then as the appliances break, I could get new.
Thank you for some perspective. I want to enjoy some new stuff now, but just trying to find the balance.

    Bookmark   July 22, 2012 at 10:17AM
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andreak100

I can see wanting the new counter, sink, and backsplash - and if you think you're probably 10 years out from your next redo, then that sounds pretty reasonable to me to do those changes. I think that the things you mentioned can bring new life into a kitchen that (honestly!) isn't bad looking if you are comfortable with the current layout. And really, even if you aren't completely at ease with the current layout, will your proposed changes make it that much better of a layout? But, if you start moving things around, you're going to up that price quite a bit because you need to buy the new appliances and move around your heat duct. Suddenly, you're probably closer to the 9-10K range anyway plus backsplash.

What ever you decide is the best idea, good luck with your decision.

    Bookmark   July 22, 2012 at 10:39AM
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rosie

Balance. It's a good thing. :) Aklvdb, to me a more pointed question is, after the initial delight in a partial fix calmed down, would you be as happy as now with the thought of waiting the next 10 years of your life to create a better layout? Also, life is uncertain. Ten years sometimes turn into 15 or 20, or never. It actually happens a lot.

So, as you know, it's not a horrible kitchen and has some nice things going for it. Perhaps a better way to frame your approach would be: What improvements would make you satisfied enough with your kitchen to basically forget about a 10-year plan. Until someday you were in a happy financial place and found yourself once again fondling cabinet displays. :)

If, for instance, you actually care a lot more about the counter material than the walk to the sink, and would really benefit from more counter on the sink side, that $5K might be a very good investment as planned. Or, what variation would get you that satisfaction?

Regarding the walk-in pantry, BTW, seems to me it's probably the spoiler that drove everything else. The reason the layout's so much less efficient than it might have been. Everyone wants a walk-in, so the developer's architect picked a place to frame one in and put the rest of the kitchen willy-nilly around it.

While you muse over this stuff, how about getting a pad of graph paper and exploring other ways that space might have been laid out? This might give you more ideas.

BTW, have you looked to see if the flooring runs under the cabinets? If so, perhaps they could be reinstalled in new positions for relatively little. Just remembered, there'll be gaps where the pantry wall stands, though. Nevertheless, it's good to know what you have to work with.

Oh, I'd see if you can find a good handyman or finish carpenter for any changes to the cabinetry and flooring. If you can stay away from kitchen/interior design industry's bloated prices, you'll get significantly more for your money.

    Bookmark   July 22, 2012 at 11:30AM
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akl_vdb

I agree with you Rosie regarding the 10 year plan. Sometimes I do think it's better to just do it. I just don't want to regret it. I was looking at the kitchen just now, and I would love that extra 30 inches of counterspace, it just feels closed off. But is it worth the extra work and ya, about $5K. Writing it/drawing it is a great idea.

I did have some quotes from the kitchen design people. But I do think a finishing carpenter may be the way to go (I do know one, he's tied up for a while on his own projects, but maybe in a year or 2 may be ready to take on more).

Sigh. Maybe I'll wait. I'm driving my family crazy!

Also, I guess just moving the wall oven down in the same location may look silly? I would move the microwave up in line with the other cabinets and make it shallower.

Thanks to all the replies!

    Bookmark   July 22, 2012 at 11:42AM
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lascatx

I would want to change the layout for my use, but if you are happy with the way this is working for you, why fix what ain't broken? Talk to a cabinet guy about removing the drawer below, moving the oven under counter and the microwave up into an over the counter spot and not mess with everything else.

If it were mine and I could do a complete reworking, knowing what I do now, I would look at putting your range where the fridge is (if you can vent it properly from there), removing the corner pantry and ovens and having the fridge and pantry on the wall opposite where the cooktop is now, preserving the peninsula for a beverage/snack area.

    Bookmark   July 22, 2012 at 11:47AM
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akl_vdb

Thanks lascatx. You're right, it isn't broken per say, and does work fairly well for us. Would it look funny with the oven right next to the dishwasher? I tried to find pics, but couldn't. It is just moving it a foot down or so, but not sure.

    Bookmark   July 22, 2012 at 3:12PM
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