Monday, September 22, 2014

What lies beneath

The contractor who installed my fence has been doing some other odd jobs around the house for me.  Installing a new floodlight for the backyard (necessitated by hearing the nighttime yip-yip-yipping of coyotes in the distance a while back - NOT a sound you want to hear as a pet owner), replacing a wonky exterior outlet, etc.  I also asked him to do a little sleuthing.

When I bought the house five years ago, there was brand-new carpet in the bedrooms and the hallway.  Very nice, but when you foster kittens, some of whom are still learning the ABCs of litterboxing, carpet is a pain.  It would be much easier if there was a hard floor in the foster room, and since my living room had a hardwood floor that was obviously original to the house, I wondered ... maybe there was hardwood under the carpet? 

Of course, there's only one way to find out - rip up the carpet.  Engineers call it "destructive testing" - ripping something up to find out what's behind it.  So I asked the contractor to cut some of the carpet in the foster room closet and see what was under it.

Would it be linoleum?  Some kind of crappy subfloor?  Would it ... could it ... be hardwood?  Oh, the suspense was killing me.  Finally, it was time to find out.

The contractor went into the closet and started cutting.  He pulled up a square of carpet and padding and handed it out to me.  Then he said, "Here, come take a look," and survey SEZ:

(inserting some spaces here for suspense)

(can you even stand it)

(here we gooooooo...)

Ding ding ding IT'S HARDWOOD!  The angels sang.   Looks to be in excellent shape, too, if maybe in need of some cleaning and refinishing.

Holy crap you guys, WHY do people carpet over hardwood? Whyyyyyyyy?  Wood floors are so pretty.

So!  I'm going to have the contractor pull up the carpet in the foster room ASAP.  Just so I can go in and gaze at all the wood glory.  As soon as the budget allows, he'll come in and refinish the wood, and then, down the road, do the other bedroom and the hallway. 

Oh happy day.


~~Silk said...

Congratulations! When the builder was finishing this house (floors are all laminate fake hardwood and tile), he asked what color carpeting I wanted on the stairs. I said "none". He seemed surprised, and I explained that you don't put carpeting on stairs when you have cats. Within a few months, Daughter (three cats) had removed the carpeting on the stairs to her basement.

~~Silk said...

By the way, from the title, I was half expecting that you'd find a grave in your backyard.

~~Silk said...

I dunno about that guy. A huge hole wasn't necessary. You can just pull the carpet away from the nail strip in a corner of the closet.

Domestic Kate said...

I too was expecting a grave or something. Must be all your talk about bones.

I also don't get why people deliberately cover up hard wood. The only thing I can think of is that people who rent out their house might want to keep the wood floors in good shape, so they cover it and let their tenants have the crappy carpet. I don't know much about that sort of thing, though. My current place has carpet everywhere but the bathroom (kitchen included). It's so hot here, I don't know why anybody would want carpet.

rockygrace said...

Sorry to freak everybody out with the post title. Oooops. Although I actually do have a grave in my backyard (Bearycat).

~~Silk, the contractor did offer to just pull up a corner, but at this point, in the foster room at least, I've kind of decided that the carpet is going, regardless, so I told him to just cut a chunk out.

and Kate, I guess it was a *thing* back in the seventies to go with wall-to-wall carpeting (I remember that my parents had burnt-orange-color shag carpet) (yikes), but yeah, I don't get it either. And my condolences on having a carpeted kitchen; THAT must be a lot of fun. On the other hand, you're probably a lot less spill-prone in the kitchen than I am, so there's that. :)

rockygrace said...

Oh, and even if carpet was all the rage in the seventies, and the house had been carpeted when the previous owner bought it, it still doesn't explain why he put in brand-new carpet when it went on the market. Just pull up that old carpet and let the floors breathe, dude! He probably could've gotten a couple more grand for the house. Is mystery.

At least he put Pergo in the kitchen. I'm not crazy about it, but at least it's not carpet.

Domestic Kate said...

Less spill-prone! That's funny. Just last night I spilled some of the liquid from some black beans I made. Thankfully, I think it's indoor-outdoor carpet/stain resistant. It's kind of fun being able to vacuum the kitchen (although, technically, I used to vacuum my kitchen before sweeping is too much work).

bridgett said...

One gets a price break on wall-to-wall and carpeting is way cheaper than refinishing when you need to freshen up a house for resale. New paint and carpets (move-in ready) makes for quick sales.

rockygrace said...

Aaaaah. Thanks for the enlightenment, Bridgett!