We’ve spent a lot of evenings and weekends trying to finish up the new flooring project that we started back in late May. We never expected that it would take us this long to get ‘er done. But I guess we hadn’t realized just how difficult large projects like this can be with work, a child, and summer traveling. We also didn’t realize that we’d have so many unexpected obstacles in our way.
One of the biggest obstacles was in the coat closet in the hallway. You see, our coat closet was home to a curious little surprise. We’ve known since we moved in that there was a metal panel bolted to the floor in the coat closet. We weren’t quite sure what was under it (buried treasure? Jimmy Hoffa’s body? or maybe traces of some lost civilization?), but guessed that it was probably covering an old vent from the home’s former heating system.
Unfortunately, the metal panel stuck up about 3/4 inch above the old parquet flooring, which meant that we wouldn’t be able to simply lay the new flooring over top of it. Instead we would have to remove the panel (unlocking the secret hidden beneath it) and hope for the best. So, Craig got to work removing the panel while I stood curiously behind him with my fingers-crossed that it wouldn’t be something too big for us to handle/fix.
Thankfully, our suspicions were correct (that’s right… no treasure or bodies). It was covering a very old, nasty, rusted return vent which we removed to uncover a very, very LARGE hole (2-3 feet deep) in the floor.
At this point we had to just stop and think for a while about what the heck to do next. Our final solution was this:
- Build a frame out of 2 x 4’s to place inside the hole.
- Peel back the metal sides of the air duct to form a lip.
- Cut a square piece of plywood to cover the hole.
- Fill the metal lip with concrete (to help secure the plywood square).
- Place the plywood square on the lip and tap into place.
- Finish things off by using concrete (left over from the floor repair work we had to do in the kitchen) to cement the plywood square in place and level things off in preparation for the new flooring to be laid.
Once things were left to set in place we were ready to lay our new bamboo flooring.
What a HUGE improvement over what it looked like in there before! Now our coats have a pretty floor to enjoy!