We are in the midst of remodeling our kitchen. Now that I have removed
the microwave and the cabinets above it and alongside it -- and the
nearby base cabinets, I have found what seems like an enormous number of
holes in the sheetrock: a dozen holes where toggle bolts have been used
(presumably along with screws into the studs) to secure a succession of
microwave ovens, a ragged hole that serves no purpose at all that I can
see, and a vertical hole about 3 inches wide and about 1 foot long
running up from an electrical box that was uncovered by anything except
the cabinet that was installed in front of it. This is in addition to
the holes for electrical boxes for light switches and the outlet for the
Mounting the new microwave will necessitate yet another lot of four
holes for toggle bolts. The wall is 5 1/2 feet wide. Would it be
advisable just to rip the sheetrock out and replace it? That would also
make it easier to rewire the outlet for the microwave to its own
breaker; it present it's on the same circuit as half the kitchen
outlets, but I haven't find the interconnection point.
To start with, if at all possible, I would put the microwave on it's
own circuit. Many localities (all?) require a dedicated circuit for a
built-in microwave, yet allow a shared circuit for counter top units.
I know that when my CT unit was on shared circuit, the breaker would
trip quite often. It's dedicated now.
It might also be advisiable to install blocking for the microwave
instead of using toggle bolts. I can't see the mounting hardware from
here, but my guess is that using blocking would be the most secure
You got to do some patching anyway, so I'd cut out the section, wire
it correctly, add the blocking, and pop in a new piece. At least that
what it sounds like from here. Just remember to cut it back to the
middle of the studs on each side so you'll have something to mount the
If the cabinets are down, rip out the old drywall. Drywall is not sacred,
nor is it expensive. It would certainly be easier to re-install new drywall
and tape and mud it rather than patching dozens of holes. While the drywall
is down put in blocking for the cabinets and microwave, don't depend on
drywall to support them. Once the wall is open, you can install additional
wiring, a microwave circuit, under cabinet lights, phone and TV cables,
whatever suits your fancy. Before you install the drywall use a straightedge
to find bowed studs and shim them level, it will make reinstalling the
cabinets a lot easier.
Just to clarify for you and a previous responder: I don't know what
previous owners did, but any microwave I've installed has come with a
mounting plate with a large number of holes, so that there have to be
two or four or more that line up with a stud or other structural member,
I don't recall about the previous one I installed, but this one also has
four holes near the corners that are marked as "must be used by
installer"; if they coincide with studs, that's good, but otherwise
toggle bolts can be used -- just to hold the corners flat against the
wall, but not necessarily supporting a great load. The main load is
supported by screws into studs.
Nevertheless, I do like the suggestion of putting in blocking to
correspond with those corner holes. Thanks for the suggestion.
On 08/13/07 03:05 pm EXT wrote:
Amen to that. For the sheetrock, I'd cut out the old from stud to
with square horizontal cuts, and attach cleats clear of mount bracing,
top, bottom, and sides. Cleats could easily by "2x2".
Cutouts for boxes should be really simple.
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