So as promised, here is the post on installing my bathroom countertop! I had ordered a custom countertop from Mr. Marble through Home Depot. The reason I had to go custom is because my vanity sits back in an alcove and it is the awkward width of 33.5". I has originally wanted to replace the whole vanity to something more modern, but budget held me back when I realized how much it would cost! My countertop finally came in a couple of weeks ago and sat in the hallway for awhile because I knew I needed help to install it, but with my wisdom tooth surgery and a whole lot of plans ahead I had no idea when I would get to it. However, I somehow managed to sweet talk my stepdad Lee into coming to help out last weekend and get it over with!
He went in to work on disconnecting the plumbing and before I knew it, he was calling me back to say the sink was out! Man, he works fast!! I was working very hard playing cribbage with my Mom :) (Hey- the bathroom is small and only one person can fit under the sink! Don't judge me! I also washed out all the tap hardware, so I wasn't completely lazy.)
I was super nervous about wall damage when removing the old countertop because it has back and side splashes and my new one wouldn't. I was also worried about the mirror because I am pretty sure it is glued to the wall and it sat on the back of the vanity. I didn't know if it was connected with caulking or anything that may cause it to break when the countertop was pulled out. However, when Lee scored the edges we found out the side splashes were just thin laminate on top and the wood frame of the side splashes didn't actually come near the walls so there was no connection! We removed the four screws holding it from underneath and it just popped right out! You can see in the below image that the sides of my 33.5" vanity were just fake fronts!
Next came my other big fear- would the new counterop fit? I am prone to bad measurement and I was terrified that it wouldn't fit! We did end up having some problems with the wood shim that is in the front, because of the sloped sink basin on the new countertop. We tried to cut it down, but we didn't have a saw so we had to use a giant drill bit to break it down! Even after that it still wasn't fitting well so we just took it out. The countertop is well supported from the other three sides and the shim actually bent a bit with pressure so I don't think it was adding much support anyway.
Lee then carefully caulked around the top of the cabinet using GE Premium Waterproof Silicone. We chose it because it bonds well to slick bathroom materials, like the countertop!
After that he just heaved in the countertop, while I maneuvered the pipes underneath to fit together. It fit like a GLOVE! (We had actually dry fitted it a million times during this process so I was confident it would fit once we laid the glue down). Lee then reattached the faucet and caulked around the edges using the same caulk we had used to glue it down. He did a great job and used a rubber tool (the one on the right) to smooth it out, which he said he really liked for the clean line it gave.
And then we were done!
The funny thing was that I planned on getting a new faucet, but I think that the faucet looks great with the new countertop so I think it is here to stay! I still have to patch up and temporarily repaint the walls where the old backplash used to be (I chose to not have a backsplash). I also have to figure out a solution to this:
Removing that shim meant I now have a little gap at the front so I need to MacGuyver something up in there, but it is not noticeable at all unless you are 3ft tall, so I am not that concerned :).
But of course I can't finish this post without a before and after!
It seems like a shame to put anything on the beautiful, new countertop, but alas, I need access to my stuff! I tried storing my vitamins in the medicine cabinet, but then I forgot to take them so that will never work. haha
Overall I am sooo happy with the new countertop! It looks so slick and modern and I know that this small update will pay off big time when I go to sell because all the new condos in my area all have fancy stone and marble countertops. Of course, this leads to me giving the kitchen countertop the stink eye now! Ah, if only I were richer!
Left to do in the bathroom:
- Paint (I am thinking BOLD)
- New accessories (shower curtain, bathmat and art work)
- New horizontal medicine cabinet (this one)
- Add shelving above and below new cabinet for added storage
- Hand towel hook near sink
But I have a busy and expensive summer so I will be stretching this one out for a bit!