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tb151 07-05-2012 01:33 PM

Half Bath Reno
While this is my first pot on this site I have to say that I'm a huge fan and have been reading it for quite some time. I thought I would show off a bit of the work I've done on my first real renovation project ever. We purchased our house about a year and half ago and knew we were going to be doing several projects like this because the majority of the finishes are builder grade, and just kinda boring.

This is the first major interior project and our first time doing any sort of remodeling. *

The goal of the job was to give the room a updated and clean feel, see if we can actually do this work, and not spend a fortune on it. *We started with a vanity from Lowes which we were pleasantly surprised with. *We shopped all over and it seemed it was either Lowes/HD or something like $2k for a single vanity. We liked this one's clean lines so we went with it. We then matched it with a nice faucet which worked with our other brushed fixtures. After that we ordered the most expensive thing, the toilet from a home supply site. *I was totally sold on Toto by a high end bathroom store and after doing research, decided to splurge and spend the $500 on it. *We then scored a great deal on Travertine tile from a local store which gave them to us for $4.00 a sq ft which was less than half their cost. *They had them in stock for a while and recently "re"found them. *

For those amongst us with ADD, the cliffs are that we watched a ton of youtube videos, read the diychatroom forums and watched a ton of home television and went for it, and somehow it turned out pretty good.

So my wife and I took some before pics but I don't have them right now. Just picture the cheapest vanity/sink/faucet combo possible.*The first step was to take the vanity and toilet out. *Once that was completed, it was time to start the real demo and rip out the tile and backer material.

To do this it essentially took a pry bar, hammer, and a ton of backbreaking labor. *The tiles were mounted on that backer board thats basically just a mesh of pebbles. *I forget the name but it makes a hell of a mess. *The demo stuff took just a few hours and luckily the subfloor looked great so we didn't need to touch it. *Our house is only 10 years old so that was the expectation.

The next step was ripping out the baseboard molding and repairing the walls for paint. *We picked a brown for the upper half of the room and decided to do white walls and several moldings for the lower half.

While doing that we also put in a new backer board and chose Hardibacker.

I chose it because the new Travertine was thicker than the previous tile and I wanted a strong board to support it while being thin. *Now the tile lines up perfectly with the hardwood floors in the hallway. *We also used a layer of thin set between the Hardibacker and subfloor.

The next step was laying out the tiles and picking a pattern. *I like the brick style pattern so we went with it. *This step took the longest since we wanted to lay them out so that we had a lot of full tiles, no super narrow ones, and the tiles around the toilet flange and vents would be sturdy. *After a few days of thinking about it I fired up the wet saw and we did a dry fit.

This next pic shows Sarah laying the tile. *She was much better at this part than I was, although I was needed when tiles needed to be pressed down hard in places to even them out. *Dryfitting worked well and the tiles went in without much drama. *

This pic shows the floors all done, and I'm dry fitting the vanity and toilet to make sure the plumbing lines will all work. *I could write a whole thing about the Toto, but the system it uses is amazing. *Its easy as heck to install and gives you 2 additional inches of room in from of the toilet.

Thats the Unifit adapter for Toto. *The wax ring mounts to the underside of that, and then attached onto the flange bolts. *Then you need to drill 4 holes into the tiles for the other screws and I did that using a diamond bit. *I was a bit freaked about messing up the tile but it worked with no issues.

So I installed the toilet that day and it worked amazingly. *The next day was baseboard molding day and as I started putting them in, I noticed a few drops of water by the toilet. *After further inspection, DOH! *The tank is cracked!

So I uninstalled it and went and picked up another from a local store, FW Webb.

The we installed the baseboard. *I have to say it was very easy, and used the 45 degree method rather than coping. *Along with that we installed a chair rail molding which separates the white lower with the brown upper half of the room. *I used my neighbors finishing nail gun and compressor to speed that up and then we caulked it and were done.

Next was the vanity. *Of course the pipes didn't line up. *This pic shows them lined up but really they were off when it was in the proper position. *After tons of research I just decided to buy a flexible tailpipe extension and it worked like a charm.

Getting the plumber putty in all of the right places was crucial to keeping the sink setup totally dry, and I was anal as hell about that.

tb151 07-05-2012 01:33 PM

So yesterday we nailed up the final molding pieces. These are still not painted and caulked yet, and that will be done this weekend. *The caulk makes a huge difference. After that and some more paint, decorations, and putting back the towel and toilet paper holders, and new window treatments, we will be done!!

The total cost of materials was around $1400 and I think we did a pretty good job considering it was our first ever project. Any feedback, thought or questions are welcome!

ghostlyvision 07-05-2012 04:36 PM

I think you did one heck of a good job, esp. for the first time - lovely looking bathroom!

unbalancedwood 07-06-2012 11:42 AM

A great looking....functional half bath!

tb151 07-08-2012 02:53 PM

Thanks guys! It took about 2 full weekends and was well worth the time and expense for us. We have a 2 year old and he loves to slow us down a bit! We just ordered a Levelor cellular shade for the window too. It's right near the back deck and we liked the idea of being able to lower the blinds form the top or raise them from the bottom. Now we just need to hang some cool pics and move on to the next project.:thumbup:

shadytrake 07-08-2012 07:44 PM

Very nice! I particularly like the vanity sink.

tb151 05-14-2013 09:40 AM

I was just posting about a play area I built but wanted to give an update on this. The bathroom has been working out amazingly well! As we went through the seasons and the house's natural expansion and contraction there were no issues with our tile job. As an over-researcher, I was a tad worried. So, Phew!

TrailerParadise 05-14-2013 12:39 PM

Looks great. it does make me glad that i decided to stick with the original tub and toilet for our bath remodel, though. We ripped it all down to the studs and ended up spending somewhere in the neighborhood of $600, most of that on mold-resistant drywall. Good job!

Amateuralex 05-14-2013 01:15 PM

1 Attachment(s)
Looks awesome!

GregsBarn 05-18-2013 07:49 AM

Nice job. Just wondering what you paid for the toilet?

tb151 05-21-2013 11:15 AM


Originally Posted by GregsBarn (Post 1181780)
Nice job. Just wondering what you paid for the toilet?

I think it was around $500. It was by far the most expensive part and much more than a typical toilet but I have to say, I LOVE it. It's never met a clog it couldn't rectalfy :laughing:

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