In a recent survey conducted by the National Association of Home Builders revealed that 70% of home buyers prefer an open layout. But open concept homes weren’t always so popular. Go back a generation or two and most people preferred closed off rooms. That’s why today, knocking down walls to create more open floors plans is one of the most popular home remodeling projects. If you’ve got one of those walls in your home that you dream about knocking down on a daily basis, here are four reasons why you shouldn’t.
The ceiling could cave in
The term "load-bearing wall" is a term used in structural engineering to refer to any wall that helps support the weight of the building. Unless you’re a structural engineer, you really shouldn’t be knocking down walls inside your home. If you do knock down a load-bearing wall, your home will lose its structural integrity. The ceiling may not collapse that very instant but it can happen at any moment down the road and cost you thousands of dollars.
You could electrocute yourself
Most interior walls contain electrical wiring behind them even if there are no visible signs of it like electrical outlets on that wall. If you knock down a wall containing electrical wiring, you could cut off electricity to that area of your home or if there’s a junction box there, you might even lose power throughout your entire home. There’s also the risk to your own well-being, if you make contact with exposed wiring you can seriously injure yourself or even be killed by electrocution. That’s a worst-case scenario but it could happen.
Your house can flood
If than interior wall has pipes behind it, one good swing with a sledge hammer could flood the room with water. By the time you get it shut off you could be looking at several thousand dollars’ worth of interior water damage.
Your floors may not match
This last one may not seem serious after the other three but it’s still another thing to consider. Flooring such as carpeting or hardwood are installed after the walls are up so when you tear down a wall, there’s going to be a gap in the flooring between the two rooms that are now one room. Even if you have left over carpeting or hardwood from when you had your flooring installed, it’s probably not going to match up very well with your existing floors due to wear/tear and discoloration that occurs over time.
Moral of the story
Knocking down a wall isn’t as easy as they make it look on TV. It can be done but it may cost more than you’re willing to spend. For one, you’ll want to consult a structural engineer to determine if the wall is load bearing. You’ll also need to know in advance if there is electrical wiring or plumbing that will need to be rerouted by an electrician or plumber since that will also add to the cost.
You may want to put your remodeling budget into more cost-effective projects like painting, installing a backsplash, re-facing kitchen or bathroom cabinets, or installing baseboard radiator covers to beautify your home without knocking down that wall.
Measure the height from the floor to the top of the metal wall plate.
Follow our guide for baseboard heater cover measurement:
Any baseboard larger than 7 3/8" (188 mm) will be compatible with our standard cover.
Any measurement greater than 9 3/8" (238 mm) will fit our tall cover.
Measure from the bottom of the finned tube heating element to the top of the metal wall plate,
A measurement of 5 1/2" to 6 3/4" (140 mm – 172 mm) will fit our standard cover.
A measurement of 7 1/2" to 8 3/4" (191 mm – 222 mm) will fit our tall cover.
Measure the distance from the wall or the metal wall plate attached to the wall, to the outside of the finned tube heating element.
Any measurement of less than 3 1/8" (76 mm) inches from the wall will fit our
Any measurement of less than 3 1/8" (76 mm) inches from the wall will fit our tall cover.
EZ Snap™ Wall Widgets are used when your old or existing wall back plate has been removed or if you have to hang your new cover 1 inch or higher to bring them up to a height that will fit our installation guidelines. Just measure your overall desired height, subtract 1", drill a hole, preferably in a stud and attach it to the wall with the included screw.
EZ Snap™ Floor Fidgets easily raise your new covers ¾ inch to compensate for any ¾ inch floor (wood, tile, or other) that has been installed any time since your baseboard heater was originally installed. May be used for any reason when the overall height has been shortened and the total height is less than 7-½ inches for standard height or 9-½ inches for the TALL height EZ Snap™ BaseBoard Covers. Just use the self-tapping screws to secure them to the top of your existing wallplate.
EZ Snap™ Wall Contraptions are used when your wall back plate has been completely removed. EZ Snap™ Wall Contraptions receives your EZ Snap™ BaseBoard Cover and keeps your aluminum fin tube from sagging. These completely replace your wall back plate. To install, slide up from the bottom and make sure the top is at your desired height. Screw to the wall, then bend the front finger up to hold the fin tube in place.
Measure from wall to wall and subtract ½ inch (to allow for wiggle room when installing your new covers.) The endcaps can be pulled or slid ½ inch outward on either end to fit your existing length requirements. Choose 2 flush to wall end caps.
Measure the overall length of the existing unit with ends attached then subtract ½ inch (to allow for wiggle room when installing your new covers.) The endcaps can be pulled or slid ½ inch outward on either end to fit your existing length requirements. Choose 2 Closed or Open-end caps.
Measure from the corner to the end of the unit with ends attached then subtract ½ inch (to allow for wiggle room when installing your new covers.) The endcaps can be pulled or slid ½ inch outward on either end to fit your existing length requirements. Choose 1 Closed or Open-end & 1 flush to wall end cap.
Measure the left side from corner A to corner B (see diagram). Then subtract 3 inches for the 90 degree inside corner, then subtract another ½ inch (to allow for wiggle room when installing your new covers.) Repeat for the right side if also wall to wall. You need to subtract a total of 3½ inches from each side that is wall to wall. Choose your end caps.
Measure the left side from the corner of the wall to the end of the unit with ends caps. Then subtract 3 inches for the 90 degree inside corner, then subtract another ½ inch (to allow for wiggle room when installing your new covers.) Repeat for the right side. You need to subtract a total of 3½ inches from both left and right sides. Choose your end caps.
L-Shaped outside radiators ending in the middle of the wall:
Measure from outside corner of the wall A to the end of the radiator unit with end caps attached B, then subtract ½" (to allow for wiggle room when installing your new covers.)
Measure from outside corner of the wall to the corner of the wall, then subtract 1/2" (to allow for wiggle room when installing your new covers.)
Left leg - measure from the corner out to the end of the radiator subtract 3" for the corner and ½ (to allow for wiggle room when installing your new covers.)
Center leg - measure from corner to corner and subtract 3" for each corner a total of 6"
Right leg - measure from the corner out to the end of the radiator subtract 3" for the corner and ½" (to allow for wiggle room when installing your new covers.).
We recommend that you order covers a little longer than normal and cut them on site, as there are many opportunities for mistakes in measuring and installation. By cutting on site you can fit and cut to fit. The covers can be cut with a good quality jigsaw and a fine metal cutting blade.
Now that you’ve learned how to measure baseboard heaters,
you’re ready to order.