Here you can see we have the bathroom vanity in place and we were just alerted to an issue by the granite installers who are going to put a granite counter with a sink on top of this vanity.
So by time they put that counter here and then add their little four inch backsplash of granite, we see it’s going to run up against the bottom of this electrical light switch on the wall. I noticed throughout this condo that some of the strange things the builders did was, they made a lot of the switches really low. So I don’t know if when they contracted this condo to be built if it was built for somebody who was disabled or in a wheelchair, but anyway the light switch is too low so this is going to have to be moved up. (Break)
So you can see we’ve drawn the line to where we think it should go. The question is that could be a big problem for a lot of you is, hey if I have to move an electrical outlet or a switch outlet box up the wall or down the wall, can I do it? That’s always been the problem because when the builders wire the place up, they’ll have the wires coming like right to the boxes that are just right sized and that’s it. So you wouldn’t really be able to move the box much. But as I look closely inside the outlet, there see the wires are coming from above? So that’s a good sign… that means we can take this whole outlet box for this light switch, and we can move this light switch up the wall a few inches.
Now had it been the case where we needed to go down the wall, well we’d be in really big trouble because the wires are going to end here. And let’s say we needed to come way down here, we’d be in big trouble. That would be an ugly scenario because what you would have to do then is, wire in another outlet box and do a junction inside that box. You can’t do a hidden junction inside the wall… that’s illegal, although I see morons doing it all the time.
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve found hidden junctions in the walls when I have torn apart walls during our remodeling efforts.
So I felt my National Electric Code book here and I was looking through it, and there’s nothing in the book where the National Electric Code specifies any particular height for light switches in a room. But I can tell you that what most builders typically do is, they set them at a height on the wall such that the bottom of the switch is 48 inches off the floor. But in this case what we’re going to do is to set this switch to be the top of the switch at 48 inches off the floor because of the cavity here for the medicine cabinet.
It’s going to be an obstruction for us so we wouldn’t be able to otherwise the outlet would be right here, So you can’t do that… so I decided I’ll make the top of the outlet 48 inches.
So essentially we’re moving the outlet up, but when we think about 6 inches or so, that will give them enough clearance for the granite guys when they come in here to set their granite and their little side splash here.
Then we’ll patch up whatever hole we have here. Now the thing to keep in mind too, here’s the best way to approach this, and remember you probably have wire coming right down the wall here. So I’m gonna use my cutting tool of choice for drywall, my Sonicrafter here.
We’re going to use the Sonicrafter because if you look at that drywall blade on there, this drywall blade kind of sets the depth for you so you can’t go further than the depth of the drywall. So it would be virtually impossible for me to hurt any wire back in here.
We’re gonna just cut two slits that go straight up like this and straight up like this that way we’ll have it all wide open in there and all we got to do is separate this outlet box from the stud and then move the outlet box up.
Now we want to know which side to start on right. I’m gonna get my little stud finder out and we’ll try it out all right. So as I run my stud finder across the wall there. See those three LEDs light up? That means just as I suspected the stud is on the left-hand side of the outlet, and it makes sense too because you can see it would be right on the left side of where the medicine cabinet fits in there too.
So we know that this outlet is attached to the stud on the left hand side. Let’s go ahead and start slicing up the wall here.
All right so I’ve got some protective paper here just to kind of shield from all the dust and debris. We’re going to start slicing right up there.
We’ve got that cut and let’s pull this piece out. You can see where we dodged the bullet, but you see my point about using a Sonicrafter where the blade just barely reaches the other side of the drywall. Because you could see that the wire wasn’t even a half away half an inch away.
We could just slide our outlet up the stud there. So there’s the metal stud.
We went and opened up the hole a little wider to the left mainly because of the bracket here… see it’s a little bit overkill. But now that we have the bracket exposed, we can just pull out the whole thing and we’ll unscrew it and we’ll move the outlet all the way up to the top here and we’ll re-screw it back into the stud.
We’ve moved the outlet from down here to up here. All we have to do now is put a few screws in there and we’ll be just fine. This worked out very perfectly for us.
We have it all nice and secured nice and rock-solid there. This was a textbook maneuver here. So now all we have to do is just patch up the drywall around this and do a little bit of tape and mudding and we’re done.
By the way, I wanted to point out something to you here. When we patch up with the drywall, you will have to caulk along where the drywall meets this outlet box here in order to seal it up. In fact we’ve already sealed this outlet. So if we look in the back there, you will see all those holes there. We’ve actually covered those with silicone caulk because the smoke was coming in through there. And it was coming in through the outlet. That’s why we’ve also we bought these gaskets to as a third measure that you’ll put them over here like this.
When you put the plate down, it’ll keep any air conditioning from seeping into your wall, and it’ll prevent any smoke smell that might end up inside that wall. And it’ll prevent it from coming back out into your bathroom here through this outlet.
Let’s go ahead and get started on the drywall patch. We have it all taped up and ready to go for drywall mud. Now these pieces here were a little bit thinner than these pieces. They weren’t quite as thick so this was half-inch and that was five eighths inch thick drywall.
So what we’re gonna do is just kind of mud thickly over this area here to level it out. Okay so here we are. It looks a lot nicer now the granite guys kind of showed up a little early and went ahead and installed the green in here. But at least we got in a week before them. We were able to get the switch raised up a significant distance instead of before it would have been running into the green. We have probably two more layers of drywall mud to skim around on here on this wall. We’ll sand it down and we’ll get it painted. We’ll get our medicine cabinet in there.
This is coming along very nicely. This is a nice cream colored cabinet that I had put in here.
We’ll see how it looks once we get it sanded and painted. All right so we’ve added another layer here and things are starting to smooth out a little more. Because of the nature of the way this wall was and it was a little wavy to begin with, what we’re going to do here is once this dries, I’m gonna love seeing it down a little bit more to get some of these ridges down and everything.
We’ll try to do a skim coat starting in the corner that goes all the way across here, so this will help us smooth out this whole wall. Then because there’s bumps and stuff here left over from what the Builder did, it’s pretty hard to just come right up against this and get a nice clean match up.
You’re better off just doing a skin layer over the whole thing later on and making it all even so that you’ll never be able to tell. So we’re going to sand it down once it dries and put on another coat.
Okay so I’ve sanded it down now and it’s nice and smooth. All the edges are smoothed down and should look like the edge of a cloud. When you’re done sanding, you shouldn’t see any lines.
Now I’m going to do a skim coat that goes all the way across.. it’ll come to here. Then we’ll try to pick up some here… get on the top and the bottom. But because we have all of these little nooks and crannies here to fill in, we want it to look as smooth as possible because once it’s painted, it’s going to look a lot different than this. You’ll see every little mark on the wall.
There’s our final skim coat. Once this dries, we’ll come back and we’ll see anything we have to blend back down right there. We’ll sand gently around all in that area there and blend that over there. Then we’ll paint it and it’ll be just like it never happened.
So you remember yesterday where this outlet switch here was, this light switch was down here and it would have collided here with the backsplash. You could see what an easy fix that is to move the outlet switch up.
Well here is our final repair here. You could see it came out pretty good. It’s all painted now.
We just have a few more areas to touch-up paint and some little pock marks that we want to fill in with a little bit of DAP.
This is how it looks.
I always use a metal plate and as you can see there’s a slight bend in the wall here.
So we’re gonna take this back off later and bend this a little bit to make this plate conform around the wall a little better. This is why I don’t like to use these plastic ones.. these are cheap. Even though this one looks great, they all say on the product that they don’t shatter, they don’t crack, but they do!
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