Case study: Old Kitchen Made New in Fairfax Kitchen Upgrade

Case study: Old Kitchen Made New in Fairfax Kitchen Upgrade

The client Sue had just acquired a charming ranch home built in 1953 and wanted to keep its traditional look as much as possible. However, she had a problem with a rather gloomy kitchen because of the low roof and exposed beams. She wanted to bring in more light by adding more windows and putting in new cabinets and countertops that would complement the old wood floors. Also she wanted to know down an interior wall to make it an open floor layout. She called us in to give her a rough kitchen design and quote.

First visit

consultation with client
During the first consultation, Sue provided us with an idea of what she wanted the kitchen to look like by showing us a few ideas online. We made measurements and sent her back our take on the new kitchen using 3D design software. She chose the second suggestion, which was an L-shaped layout not much removed from the current layout. We arranged a second visit to finalize the design and quote.

Final decision

granite slabs
We were aware that Sue had invited other companies to bid on the project, but we provided her with several quotes that included different options for the cabinets, countertops, and other elements. We were probably not the lowest bid as we offered only quality material for her remodel. Nevertheless, she contacted us back after a few days to let us know she had chosen our bid and design, and arranged to come in to choose the cabinets and countertops. We arranged for the building permits for her design after she had made the initial payment. We advised her to decide for temporary kitchen accommodations for at least 5 weeks.


demolition of exterior wall
The first day was spent making walls, moving appliances to the attached garage, and putting up clean sheets to prevent debris from spilling out into the rest of the house. We had to knock down one interior non-load bearing wall, one exterior wall, and remove the existing counters and cabinets. The work took two days, spending one half day trucking out the debris from the site.

Structural build-out

frame for French window
With the demolition done, it took two days to put up the new framing for the exterior wall, which would now include French windows leading out to the backyard and let more light in to the kitchen. It took another two days to install the frame for the demolished interior home to create an archway for the new open layout.


putting in new plumbing
With the frame in, we only had to put in new pipes for the new sink that came with the new cabinets and countertops. There was no need to reroute the plumbing as it was up to code despite being more than 60 years old.
We did have to do some major electrical rewiring as the old wiring would not be able to supply enough power safely to the new appliances Sue had ordered to put in. We had to put in new circuits to make available a total of 200 amps that would be more than enough to handle the load. The rough-in took three days. It took another day to wait for the inspectors to come in to sign off on the plumbing and electrical wiring. It went without a hitch, as we knew it would.

Closing it up

putting up drywall
With the inspection done, we were free to put in the French windows and put up the exterior brick wall. We put in insulation before closing it up with dry wall on the inside. This took three days. The weather was nice and dry, so the plaster dried quickly. We were able to prep and paint that wall the next day.


putting in countertops
With the kitchen safe from the elements, we delivered the cabinets and countertops for installation. It took two days to install both, including the sink. There was a minor delay as Sue changed her mind over the fixtures. We had to adjust to the project cost as the new fixtures were considerably more expensive than the ones she had originally chosen. However, that was a simple matter, and we put in the new fixtures the same day. The following day, we hooked up the plumbing and put in the outlets and switches for the counters. The appliances had been delivered that day, so it was just a matter of bringing them in and hooking them up. We cleaned up the kitchen, ready for final inspection with Sue.


client inspecting kitchen
Sue was very meticulous in her inspection, and pointed out minor imperfections in the finishing, which we addressed there and then. She was delighted with the work and loved that we were able to finish the project ahead of schedule. She signed off on the project there and then. We were happy to have served another satisfied customer.

We deliver

Finding a reliable kitchen remodeler is not hard. Just get in touch with GBC Kitchen and Bath. We service the DC, Virginia, and Maryland areas, specifically Alexandria, Arlington, Washington, Tyson, Vienna, Falls Church, Fairfax, Springfield, Burke, Bethesda, and Rockville and have showrooms in Rockville Maryland and Alexandria, Virginia.

When you contact us for your planned upgrade or remodel project, no matter how small, the first thing we will do is give you a free design consultation and quote, so you are already ahead without spending a dime. We can promise the best customer service, expert fabrication and installation, and speedy execution of any project so that you stay on budget and the project stays on deadline. You will never get that from big box stores.

Contact us today to get a free quote for your kitchen upgrade and remodeling needs.

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