Need to jack up counter to install dishwasher


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Old 03-14-06, 06:28 AM
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Need to jack up counter to install dishwasher

In my kitchen there is nice large-square ceramic tile on the floor. The previous owner was a professional tile man. But--- he didn't consider dishwasher installation issues when he installed the tile.

The tile is about 5/8" thick and was installed after the rest of the kitchen was in place. Normally the floor under the dishwasher is on the same level as the kitchen floor, but in my situation the tile makes the floor higher than the dishwasher floor.

To get the old dishwasher out I had to hacksaw the metal frame of the dishwasher. Now to get the new dishwasher in place I need about 5/8" more clearance than I have.

I am thinking in terms of jacking up the front of the counter top by aout 5/8". Just pulling upward on the counter top by hand allows me to lift it about 1/4", so I am thinking that by jacking it up and propping it up with 2x4s I can get the clearance I need to slide the new dishwasher in place.

I will disconnect the sink drain pipe before I start, and the other plumbing connections to the sink will be okay.

Does anybody have any thoughts about possible other things to deal with? Any thoughts on a good way to jack up the counter top? I am thinking of using a hydraulic auto jack with a custom-cut length of 2X4 from the jack to the countertop.
 
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Old 03-14-06, 06:51 AM
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One other thing to consider is if you have a backsplash. Although they are not normally connected to the wall, the jacking may cause it to be put in a bind. If you are lucky, the countertop is just screwed down and you may be able to loosen or remove some screws in the area of the DW. May be glued also. Good luck with your project.
 
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Old 03-14-06, 07:49 AM
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Thanks M-Dragon,

I had overlooked the obvious that there could be screws holding down the countertop. So I will check for those. If there is glue, that could get "sticky" Ha Ha. I guess I would use a putty knife between the countertop and the cabinets to break the glue loose. But that itself could be a tedious ugly job.

I said to my wife, the WORST case here is that the counter top splits/breaks and then we have to buy a new countertop. Since the current countertop is old and not in great shape, that outcome might be a blessing in disguise. The tile floor is nice so taking that up is NOT an option. So my only way to get the new dishwasher in is to lift the countertop a bit.
 
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Old 03-14-06, 07:57 AM
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I didn't figure you wanted to tear out the tile, thats why I didn't mention that option. Good luck.
 
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Old 03-14-06, 11:22 AM
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we did have our countertops replaced, and they unscrewed a bunch of screws to remove it. but first they had to take off the backsplash/side piece things. you'll definitely be ruining any caulking that's there now. this is an absolutely fabulous time to re-do your counters, especially if they need it. your counters are the main thing you look at when you're in there. you'll love having new ones. go for it! and good luck with your "accident"!!! ;D
 
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Old 03-14-06, 01:21 PM
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M-Dragon, could you please offer me some more advice? Here is the current status:

I jacked up the counter top. That worked just fine, no problem.

But... when I tried to slide the new dishwasher in, it does not fit. When I get the dishwasher in as far as it will go (so the DW back is against the wall) the front part of the dishwasher frame does not drop off the tile. I can't leave it like that because that means the front of the dishwasher is about 3/4" too high.

I have two choices: (1) cut out two notches in the tile so the front corner of the dishwasher frame can drop into the notches, or (2) cut two inches off the front of each horizontal frame member.

More about option (2): the vertical member of the frame will fit behind the tile okay if I cut off the frame portion that extends forward of the vertical member. But doing that means I lose the front screw-in levelers and I lose the brackets that the lower front face plate of the dishwasher attaches to. If I go with option (1) I will have to trim 3/4" off the bottom of the lower face plate because it will be touching the tile all the way across.

The only other thing I could try is to go back to the Sears Outlet Store where I purchased the dishwasher and see if they have another model in stock that will fit without any modification. That would probably mean spending at least $250 more (and I would get a higher grade DW).

Any thoughts about this? Thanx in advance. Henry
 
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Old 03-14-06, 01:38 PM
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I really think I would notch the tile. The front cover will hide this. I went and looked at my DW and if I had your situation, I would have the same problem. Cutting off the levelers could be really bad in the end and you may have stability problems by cutting the frame. $250 would have me getting the grinder out for notches.
 
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Old 03-17-06, 04:21 AM
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Update on what I did:
I decided to trim back the tile (and the plywood underneath the tile) to provide enough space for the DW to fit in at the base floor level (where the old DW was sitting). To do the cutting of the tile and plywood I used a Dremel-type tool (actually made by Black & Decker). I bought a Dremel 545 diamond wheel for cutting the tile and that worked great. I used the same tool with wood cutting bits and drills to get the plywood cut. It was actually more work and time to cut the plywood than it was to cut the tile! This would have been fairly easy if I didn't have to kneel down the whole time. The kneeling made it a kind of difficult task.

Thanks for your help on this silly problem! Today I will connect up the DW and hopefully it will run the first time.
 
 

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