My staircase project is spiraling out of control. After uncovering a live wire buried in plaster right where I need to secure the new landing and turn on the stairs, I had to make some exploratory cuts in the ceiling to trace the line (so I can abandon that no-longer necessary hall light). But that same circuit powers the first-floor hall light (the one I’m taking out), the two front rooms on my second floor, and my bedroom, which is in the middle of the house.
So with the ceiling already cut open and in need of eventual repair, well, why not run new grounded electric to the room that will be my study? (I’d prefer a dedicated line for my computer and its peripherals.) And if I’m doing that, might as well also fish a new line up for the other front room and my bedroom.
To trace those lines, I had to start taking up floorboards – not a big deal, because some hack made enough crappy cuts years ago that it was pretty easy (in most cases) to see where it had been removed before. And pre-cracked.
It seems that hack might have lived a lot longer ago than I thought; there’s still live knob and tube in the floors. Or the hack left the knob and tube and simply added some new wiring, because there is also some abandoned knob and tube, and a hydra-like collection of circa 1950s Romex. There are also a lot a cobwebs.
So, in order to most efficiently and inexpensively (for future projects) put the staircase back to rights, I first have to run new electric to three rooms (and I might as well add a plug in the second-floor hall while I’m at it).
While investigating the wiring path to my bedroom, I discovered that what I thought was a chase for the third floor HVAC vents is in fact only partially that; it’s about twice as wide as it needs to be…and I could, with things torn up anyway, pretty easily reroute that HVAC in a less obtrusive manner — might as well; the walls will already need patching.
So, to build a landing and two steps, I am running electric, pulling up floorboards (then putting them back, of course), moving ductwork and patching plaster. All on the floor above.
Redoing the bath ought to be easy by comparison…If I ever get to it. That will be a total gut job – it’s much easier to rebuild if first you can destroy.