How to Take Out a Kitchen SoffitRegardless of it’s purpose, if your kitchen is equipped with a soffit, you might wish to get rid of it to install new cabinets. Perhaps, you just want to open-up the space to be able to shelve decor on top of the cabinets. What you should know is that unlike some of the faux fixtures in your home, this one isn’t a simple cut-out and patch job. Because these fixtures conceal hardware, said hardware will have to be concealed in another way.
Making the decision to remove the soffits means that you have committed to a big project. Just how big depends on what is lurking behind the soffits. The only way to tell is to cut a hole in the drywall big enough to shine a flashlight and get a good look around. If you’re really lucky, it will just be empty space. But chances are pretty good that you’ll see wiring, air ducts and/ or plumbing pipes. If you are still intent on removing those soffits, all that “stuff” has to be re-routed and you have officially committed to a major remodeling project. —Kitchen CraftsmanBefore you decide to proceed, you ought to know what’s inside the soffit. This won’t necessarily be simple, since the whole intent of the fixture is for concealment. The best way to do this is to cut a small opening and shine a flashlight inside. Then, you’ll know whether or not you really want to proceed. Start by shutting off the power to the kitchen at the main panel and shut off the main water valve as well, then, do the following:
- Remove as much as possible from the kitchen and separate the area. The kitchen should be empty and covered in plastic and/or drop cloths. This includes anything on the countertops, and even the microwave, if it’s not mounted.
- Score the crease along the ceiling with a utility knife. Step on a small ladder and carefully score the joint along the ceiling with a utility knife. You might have to do this a few times to get the blade cut through the soffit.
- Carefully cut into the score with a reciprocating saw. Use a reciprocating saw to cut through the soffit from one end to another. Then, cut down from the top to the bottom along the end corners with the reciprocating saw. You can now gently pull the face of the soffit away and cut out the side on the end to expose the entire cavity.
- Reroute any mechanical systems. Once all the mechanical components are exposed, you’ll have to reroute these to keep them functional while still out-of-sight. The best advice is to call-in a professional to reroute these for safe and proper concealment.