Monday, May 9, 2011

Airing Cupboard

One of my favorite things about the house is this door.  Mostly it's the high knob and the panels.  In the UK a closet that has the boiler is called an airing cupboard.  I think it's just a euphemism to make up for the fact an entire cupboard is lost because of the boiler.   I love the door even though the "airing cupboard" has caused a lot of grief.

When we bought the house the cupboard looked like this.  There were four vents because the boiler and water heater it housed needed a lot of ventilation.  I didn't love the holes that had been drilled in the door.  Or the boiler and water heater that lurked behind.

I had dreams of turning this space into the one closet in our home.  I thought we could use it for clothes and shoes.  Our plan was to get a new combi-boiler and have it moved down to the kitchen.  But due to logistics, delayed hot water return and cost we decided to leave the boiler in the back bedroom.  Losing the closet was an emotional one to get over.  Plus the closet didn't get re-skimmed when the builders finished the work on the house so it needed a lot of work.

To fix the holes in the door I used two-part wood filler.  The wood filler worked a treat, but it has a very strong smell.  I sanded and filled again, then sanded, primed and painted the door.  A handyman helped us fit a new knob.  I stripped the wallpaper from outside the closet so it could be skimmed.  Once the old boiler was removed I spent about four hours stripping the wallpaper inside the closet and then a couple hours cleaning it.

We'd talked to the plumber about placing the new boiler in the cupboard to take up the least amount of room as possible.  Somehow the instructions were lost and the new boiler took up almost the whole cupboard!  To try and get some storage I talked to the plumber about where we could store things ( I was concerned about risks or fire or lack of ventilation, etc.)  It took ages, but I found a flat pack options that fit (with a bid of modification) to store linens.  I also installed a shelf for additional storage.

It's not perfect, but it works for now.  I love the door.  I love our new boiler and the heat and hot water it provides.  And I'm happy that we at least got a little storage from the airing cupboard.

Maybe someday we'll paint or wallpaper and get better storage.

But for now I leave the door closed and enjoy the view.


Anonymous said...

I want a room I can call an airing cupboard. It really sounds British, because it it. And that you were able to get some space!

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

I went through your posts and read about your insulation in between your floor boards. All that work made me feel stressed.

I have never heard of the material you used for the inuslation. Maybe we don't have it here.

Lots of work guys! Kudos!

Mitch said...

Thank you. Looking at the underfloor insulation post makes me stressed. I don't know what we were thinking!