Enlarge oven opening in brick wall

Old 12-04-07, 11:02 AM
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Lightbulb Enlarge oven opening in brick wall

I need advice on enlarging a cutout in a brick wall.

I am replacing my double oven with a newer, larger double oven. My old oven is mounted in a 3 sided brick enclosure in the corner of my kitchen. The enclosure is for the oven only. It does not a load bearing wall.

The opening for the new oven must be about 4 inches wider and 6 inches taller. The current opening is 24.5 inches wide and 49.5 inches tall. At the top on the opening is a lentil that extends about 2 inches beyond the opening on each side. From the top of the oven, the brick wall extends about 47 inches to the ceiling. The bottom of the opening is 12 inches from the floor, which is the recommended position.

I have purchased a masonry blade for my 7 inch SkilSaw. I need to make the cutout wider, and extend the top of the opening.


1. What is the recommended approach?
2. How should I remove the lentil to minimize brick damage?
3. Do I need to reinstall a new, wider lentil?
4. How do I ensure a straight cut?
5. Do you have any tips for minimizing brick/mortar dust?
6. What would be a typical charge for doing this work.


Old 12-04-07, 12:12 PM
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There are a couple of issues and considerations before you being.

First, the lintel. It may be possible to remove and replace it without having the opening fail, but it is risky. If at all possible, you should leav it in place and enlarge the bottom.

Second, it will be much easier if you only cut one sie of the opening, so if that is an option, consider it.

Third, there is not much you can do about the dust other than have someone hold a shop vac behind you and tent off the immediate area with light poly. Wear glasses and a mask, regardless.

To cut straight, use something that will not blow off (i.e. not chalk-line) and take your time.
Old 12-04-07, 03:20 PM
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you could buy

a dustmuzzle for your saw & hook it to your wet/dry vac,,, if the lintel's not load-bearing (which is must be or there wouldn't be 1 already), cut it & toss it,,, but replace it at the top of the opening.

this is a tough job with h/o tools - is your blade diamond or abrasive ?,,, gear or direct-drive saw ?,,, straight cuts depend on operator skill/experience,,, no idea on cost but a good estimate's 3x labor for the job incl portal to the job.
Old 12-04-07, 07:26 PM
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Lightbulb More details

I don't think enlarging the opening at the bottom is an option. Because the lentil is only 27 inches long, which is shorter than the required new opening width, simply widening the hole will destroy the support for the lentil.

And unfortunately, cutting just one side would make the oven look uncentered.

So my primary concern is the lentil. How can I reliably extend the top of the hole? Or, can I replace the current lentil with a wider one and then extend the bottom? Is this a job for a contractor?

To answer the other questions, I purchased a DeWalt diamond masonry blade. My SkilSaw is a direct drive 7 1/4 inch direct drive saw. (In my first post, I meant to say "this is not a load bearing wall". The brick wall(s) are just an enclosure for the oven.)

Thanks for all the help.

Old 12-05-07, 04:59 AM
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For the opening to be acceptable, one should think in terms of modular brick spacing........not inches. That means you state you need 4" wider in actual dimension which equates to 1/2 of a brick. Ok, maybe if you are planning the project anew that's dooable, but how do you expect the opening to remain centered in a retrofit because you don't want a quarter brick showing on either side do you. And then have a sawed face at that. Do you see where I'm going with this? And think about the height increase you specified of 6" for a minute. That's not going to work because you have to think in terms of the brick modular spacing so you are talking about three courses or likely 8".

Now, you might be able to score the surface of those bricks with that 7 1/4" skilsaw but you are not going to cut through for a clean (but raw) opening. I'm not done yet............the dust can really be a showstopper. Does the lady of the house no how awful that stuff is going to be? Does she really?

Take that stove right back and get a smaller one to fit your opening before it's too late. There are plenty of stoves out there. To me, that is really the best solution as I see it.

This was a dirty job, but someone had to do it.

bs5 (playing devil's advocate)
Old 12-05-07, 01:44 PM
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Hole in the wall

What about the interior of the cavity? Is it large enough or does it need to be enlarged also?

I would get an oven that fits the existing opening or remove the wall and rebuild it to fit the new oven. Just my 2 cents. Good luck with your project.

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