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Eric Adams 07-11-2009 07:48 AM

Need to raise counter height over existing kitchen cabinets
Hi - I am doing a buget-conscious upgrade of my old (60+ years) kitchen using the existing cabinets.

I will be replacing the sink, faucets, counter-top and installing an under-counter dishwasher. The dishwasher is about an inch to high for the space available as is, can someone recommend a fairly straight-forward method for raising the counter height?

The cabinetry is a straight bank - 103 inches long, I've already ripped out the old floor-covering (many layers) - still need an inch.

Thanks - Eric

Mike Swearingen 07-11-2009 08:21 AM

I'm not a contractor, just a long-time DIYer. As you may know, installing a dishwasher under an existing counter and adding thicker flooring such as wood or tile can trap the dishwasher. You need to raise the entire base cabinets.
I raise base cabinets with pressure-treated plywood sheets or strips, sometimes doubled-up, such as two layers of 1/2-inch plywood to make 1". One sheet of 1/2" p-t plywood should be more than adequate. Screw the plywood shimming to the floor. You can just set the cabinet bases on the shimming, and screw the cabinet to the wall. You can add molding or quarter-round on the toe-kick base to cover the gap.
Good Luck!

zetpayments 07-12-2009 01:27 AM

Can anyone help me out with this?
Can anyone help me out with this?

Just Bill 07-12-2009 06:27 AM

Cabinets are usually 34 1/2" tall, and the width required for a DW is 24". If you have that, it will fit. There are adjustable feet on all DW, are they screwed all the down?? Over the years, the floor may have been built up, so the opening shrinks from the bottom, not because of the cabinets. It might be time to tear out some old floors.

Eric Adams 07-12-2009 08:19 AM

raising counter height
Thanks for your in replies - I needed to be more specific;I have not accurately conveyed what I'm looking at here.

What I have is an old, pre-modular bank of cabinets. They are only 32" high and 22" deep. The cabinets are built in place. They can not be raised off the floor from the bottom as they are not boxes, they are supported on three sides by ledges screwed into the wall on which the drawers and, shelves and counter top rest and divided into three sections by two upright walls under the counter. A front panel encloses the whole unit with cut-outs for doors, drawers and an old cutting-board. The whole thing is constructed more like a cheap dresser than a modern kitchen cabinet.

With the legs on the dishwasher screwed down as far as they can go I still need at least an inch and a quarter to get the dishwasher under the cabinet.

I was thinking I would need to make an opening for the dishwasher, install a new ledge to support the counter, then fill in the gap under the counter with some trim...

Any thoughts?

jaros bros. 07-12-2009 11:15 AM

Since you are removing your countertops and will have access to the top, you could simply add a piece of decorative trim to the top, maybe 1 1/2 inches thick to give yourself a little extra room. The countertop would then sit on top of this. Don't forget to consider what the countertop lip will do. Some fall down over the top and some are flush with the top depending on how they are constructed.

Ron6519 07-12-2009 01:38 PM

It's a small run of cabinets. Reset them as high as you need. It would help if you stated how high the cabinets are. At a traditional 34 1/2", you really shouldn't have a problem with setting a dishwasher among them.

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