uws bathroom renovation


before and after images


The process -

The Challenges -

Solid Walls / Old Construction

This project took place in a historic, New York apartment building which was constructed in 1901. Although it has been retrofitted a couple times, much of the original construction work remained intact. This bathroom was constructed with a very old type of large, fire-rated brick for interior walls, face brick for the exterior wall and plaster on all sides. Not only were the walls not plum or square, the original contractors were forced to run the plumbing for the sink along the interior side of the brick wall. Additionally, the heavy cast iron tub was positioned so close to the exterior wall, adding proper insulation was also tricky.

The old fire-rated brick used for the interior walls simply crumbled when poked, or drilled, giving us very poor support for the new drywall, backer-boards and tile. Fortunately, we were able to resolve this problem with furring strips and adhesive.

Missing wall segment

A previous plumbing problem was resolved years ago by someone who created a large hole in the fire-rated brick and left it. This resulted in a complete absence of wall support for the shower plumbing. We resolved this by adding structural support for the new diverter and plumbing pipes.

We resolved this by adding wooden structural support for the new diverter and plumbing pipes.


Old Cement Floor

The old penny tiles were originally installed in this bathroom with mortar, directly above a thick layer of cement and gravel. Additionally, all of that material was applied atop of old plumbing pipes and electrical cables. All of it had to be removed so that new cement could be poured and a liquid leveling component could be applied. This process was far more tedious than adding tile to the common plywood subflooring found largely in more current constructed buildings.

final Results: