Thursday, May 5, 2011

Restoring Old Homes: False Ceilings and Noxious Pet Stains

I have been working with a client on restoring a beautiful Victorian legacy home that is need of a lot of TLC.  Today we explored some territory that many owners of old homes have had to deal with: the false ceiling.

Many folks I talked to recommended just leaving the ceiling in place.  I didn't feel that 1980's acoustic ceiling paneling was in line with the character of the home so we dug into it to find out how much space was available above it.  To our pleasant surprise, we discovered an additional 18 inches of headroom.

Fortunately, the panels came off with little effort at all.  It took about 10 minutes to pull the ceiling down in two rooms.  These rooms will have nearly 12 foot ceilings when finished.   

The paneling turned out to be a paper/cardboard type product and it was extremely light.

The last step will be to remove the ceiling fans and cut the framing boards out with a saws-all.

Another issue that was dealt with today was the nauseating stench created by dog urine present in the carpets and flooring.  Removing the carpet revealed many sins.

The white powder is a treatment used to cover up the odor when the carpet was still in place.  It passed through the carpet and pad and ended up on the fir floors underneath.  You will notice the powder is yellow in the right side of the photo.  That isn't a good sign because it means that the owners just let the dog use this spot even after they put the powder down.  Yuck!  When this area was treated with bleach it blossomed with bubbles...a sure sign of the presence of urine.  Fortunately, another treatment of bleach and a follow up with KILZ will permanently nuke any odor that exists.  Problem solved.


Jed said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jeremy Peterson said...

See the link I added in the first sentence of the post.

Jed said...

I loved the perfectly worn wood planks on the porch of this house. Seriously.

When you removed the dropped ceiling tiles, did you discover access to the attic? Is there much room up there? I was trying to figure out stairway placement.