Home Remodeling Archives - Page 3 of 4 - Wood Haven Construction

Please go to "Theme Options > Posts Slider Settings" in your admin panel and enter "Total slides" value.

UPGRADE YOUR CUSTOM SHOWER: ACCESSIBLE SEATING, REPLACE OR ADD SPRAY HEADS, BEAUTIFUL TILE AND DOORS

Posted on by dwadmin in Home Remodeling Comments Off

UPGRADE YOUR CUSTOM SHOWER: ACCESSIBLE SEATING, REPLACE OR ADD SPRAY HEADS, BEAUTIFUL TILE AND DOORS

 

Most homes these days come equipped with a shower stall. We love them because they’re easier to clean than a tub and take up less room, leaving more of the room for other things. But what if you’re not happy with the standard shower components? Fear not! These are easy changes to make!

 

Seated Showers

 

Many people find themselves in need of a shower that’s easier to use. Many manufacturers now make showers designed for seated use. These seated showers come with the seat molded right into the wall of the shower, so there is no chance of leaks, and no chance of a shower stool slipping on the floor. This type of shower is designed with accessibility in mind, with a low step-up and lots of gripping surface to minimize the risk of falls.

 

The old shower walls will need to be removed, and of course the space will need to be carefully measured to make sure the new shower will fit in the space. No plumbing replacement is strictly necessary for this kind of shower, although many people choose to have the shower head and faucet moved to make the shower even easier to use.

 

Multi-Spray Shower

 

There’s nothing better than a nice hot shower at the end of a hard day, right? Kick that feeling up a notch with a multi-head shower installation. With multiple spray heads placed around your shower, you are enveloped with relaxing water. This is perfect for people who seek to unwind during their daily routine, especially if you choose massaging shower heads.

 

Installing multiple showerheads will require plumbing work; the extent of this work will depend on your existing setup and the desired result. The shower walls may or may not need to be replaced.

 

Tiles, Doors, and Shower Heads

 

Maybe all you want is a cosmetic change to your shower space. Replacing the molded walls of your shower with custom tiling is a great upgrade option. This can be a quick and easy job, but it’s not one that should be done without proper training. Due to the huge amount of water that will contact these walls, extra care has to be taken to seal the tiles and ensure there will be no leaks. There are hundreds, or even thousands, of different tiles available, and can be laid in infinite combinations and variations.

 

Replacing the glass doors of your shower is a relatively easy fix. This can be a fast and inexpensive way to make over the look of your bathroom. Glass doors for showers come in many different styles, etched with different patterns, to suit your aesthetic needs. They are also available in different materials, such as plexiglass, which are great if breakage is a concern.

 

Replacing existing shower heads with new ones is the simplest and easiest fix. You can view hundreds of options at your nearest home improvement store, with all kinds of features. Some are equipped with a hose that allows you to remove the spray head and direct the water wherever you want. Many of them feature massaging water settings, and some are designed for water conservation. Whatever you want, you can probably find a shower head for it. A shower head replacement can take as little as 10 minutes, with the proper tools and training.

 

If you’re feeling trapped in your shower stall, don’t let it hold you prisoner. A simple call to your trusted contractor can get you on the path to a customized shower experience in only a few minutes!


WARM UP YOUR BACKYARD THIS AUTUMN WITH A CUSTOM INSTALLED OUTDOOR FIREPLACE, FIRE PIT, OR FIRE BOWL!

Posted on by dwadmin in Home Remodeling, Outdoor Living Comments Off

WARM UP YOUR BACKYARD THIS AUTUMN WITH A CUSTOM INSTALLED OUTDOOR FIREPLACE, FIRE PIT, OR FIRE BOWL!

 

There is nothing like spending a peaceful evening out on the patio with your family and friends. But even the most beautiful nights can have a chill. Don’t let the temperature drive you away – take back your backyard with an outdoor fireplace!

 

Outdoor fireplaces are really popular, and there are thousands of different ones available to suit your needs. The easiest way to view all the options available to you is to browse all your favorite online retailers, but your local home improvement store may also have them in stock for you to view in real life.

 

An outdoor fireplace exists to match or complement any décor. Metal and masonry are the most common materials because they are very effective at containing the heat and directing it safely where you want it.

 

Outdoor fireplaces are built in many different ways, and you can choose the style that best suits your needs and your space. Many of these styles are available in both gas – or wood-burning varieties depending on what you’d prefer.

 

Fireplace Styles

 

Some outdoor fireplaces are built to mimic the look of traditional indoor fireplaces. Rectangular ones, just like the one under the mantle inside your home, create a beautiful centerpiece for your outdoor space, and are available in many colors and styles. They do tend to be on the large and expensive side, though, so be sure that it will fit in your space and in your budget.

 

Another option is the chimenea. These are traditionally made from clay, but many metal options are available as well. These gourd-shaped fireplaces can be ornately decorated or simple and clean. Clay models lend a rustic charm to their space, while metal ones add a modern twist.

 

Your needs may be better served by a smaller model designed for in-the-round use. These models tend to be close to the ground and can be seen and talked over easily. You and your guests can gather around the fire and enjoy the warmth together with this style. The firehouse style is a square or round pedestal with a screen-like “house” over it to contain the ashes and protect passersby. These can be simple or ornate and are generally made of metal. Another style that has gained in popularity in recent years is the fire bowl. Usually made of metal (shiny copper is an impressive choice), these shallow bowls may also have a protective screen over the top.

 

Safety

 

You must remember that this is an open flame, and take all necessary precautions, of course. Your fireplace should not be located underneath any kind of upper balcony or other unvented structure to avoid heat damage. (A pergola is probably safe, but check with your contractor first.) Your fireplace must also be located on firm ground, preferably with a non-flammable floor underneath it. You can have a brick or concrete deck installed just for your fireplace.

 

Outdoor fireplaces, especially larger models or those that depend on propane gas, should always be installed by a professional to ensure everyone’s safety. You don’t want your expensive outdoor mantle to fall over, or a gas leak to endanger your loved ones, after all!

 

Finally, after your fireplace has been installed, make sure to take the precaution of having a fire extinguisher available nearby. If there are any children in the house, they should be warned about the fire and never left unattended.

 

Selecting and purchasing an outdoor fireplace is a fun process and a great treat for your family. Installation should only take a few hours and you will be enjoying your new fireplace in no time!


ADDING ON A ROOM CAN BE A GREAT WAY TO INCREASE YOUR LIVING SPACE, AS WELL AS THE VALUE OF YOUR HOME

Posted on by dwadmin in Home Improvement, Home Remodeling Comments Off

ADDING ON A ROOM CAN BE A GREAT WAY TO INCREASE YOUR LIVING SPACE, AS WELL AS THE VALUE OF YOUR HOME

 

When you bought your house, you called it your “dream house.” But now, you’re not so sure. Your children outgrew their bedrooms, or you started a home business and need an office. The laundry room just isn’t big enough, or you need a spare bathroom to keep the peace in the mornings. Whatever the reason, you’ve decided that you need to expand your home to fit your family’s needs. But where do you start? Here’s a list of tips to help guide you through the process of adding on to your home.

 

Know what you want

Before beginning a room addition project, be sure that you know what you want. Draw up some plans (or have an architect do it for you), and then sleep on it a while, so you are sure that it satisfies your needs and so you can be clear when describing your needs and desires to the people who will be creating it for you.

 

At the same time, though, be open to suggestions and revisions. The professionals that you work with will have years or even decades of experience, and they know what works. You need to find a balance between sticking to what you want and not being talked into something you’re not happy with, while also being open to helpful suggestions that can improve the overall project.

 

Consult a realtor

 

Before beginning this large project, consider consulting a realtor. You’re improving your home for your own family, but it’s also good to consider the appraisal value of your house. A realtor will be able to tell you what kind of impact your plans will have on the value of your property and on its potential if you ever sell your home. In general, an extra room will always add value to a house on the market, but different types of rooms add different values. Bedrooms are always attractive to buyers, of course. A home office or a guest suite can command a higher price, while a walk-in pantry or a specially-designed laundry room are the extra perks that could make the difference between a sale or a pass. You should also be aware of the “curb appeal” of your home – the outside of the addition should be designed to match or complement the style of the whole home.

 

Get lots of estimates

 

Whenever you’re planning work with a contractor, you should make sure to get multiple estimates, and that’s especially true on a room addition. Additions are a long process and can get expensive – you need to be sure that you’re getting a fair price and working with a contractor that you like. Remember that you’ll be working with this contractor for quite a while – you should choose someone whom you can trust, and that you’re comfortable working with.

 

Know the process

 

Before the work begins, be prepared for the amount of work involved. A room addition is basically a miniature house, and it requires a lot of work. Depending on the area you live in and the specifications of your additions, there will probably be some zoning laws that you’ll need to comply with, and some permits you’ll need to file. Your contractor should be familiar with all these regulations and be able to guide you through the process.

 

A home addition will have to begin with a foundation, just like the rest of your house. Then it will be framed and roofed. Windows and exterior walls will probably come next. Inside, your addition needs walls, doors, flooring, and a ceiling, of course. But behind and between those things, the new room will need electrical work and possibly plumbing, as well as HVAC ductwork (that’s Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning). After all the structural work is complete, you’ll want to decorate! Painting or wallpapering will probably come first, and your contractor can help with that as well. You’ll probably have to do the shopping for the room’s furniture and accessories by yourself, though.

 

As you can see, adding on to your home is no small task to be taken lightly. It is a lot of work before the construction even starts, and construction itself can take quite a bit of time. If an addition is what you need, you owe it to your family and your home to take the time to do it right, with professional help that you can trust.

 


PUT A ROOF OVER YOUR HEAD: INSTALL A NEW SHINGLE, TILE, OR METAL ROOF TO PROTECT YOUR FAMILY’S HOME.

Posted on by dwadmin in Home Remodeling Comments Off

PUT A ROOF OVER YOUR HEAD: INSTALL A NEW SHINGLE, TILE, OR METAL ROOF TO PROTECT YOUR FAMILY’S HOME.

 

We are all grateful to have a roof over our heads, but sometimes, that roof needs some help. If yours has sprung a leak, or is getting shabby and needs replacement, now is the time to think about your options, and get your questions answered.

 

There are many different shapes that a roof can take, from a simple flat pitch all the way to complicated constructions like the Pyramidal Rhenish Helm roof. Don’t worry though – those fancy ones are generally reserved for cathedrals and the like. Flat roofs are the simplest, but are only appropriate for areas that receive little or no precipitation. Pitched or sloped roofs are the most common, for the obvious reason that most areas of the world receive precipitation. The exact slope of your roof will be dictated by your location’s climate – the more rain or snowfall, the steeper the slope will tend to be. In some areas, building codes may specify a range of slopes that all buildings must adhere to for safety.

 

Another thing that affects the shape of a roof is the shape of the building underneath it. Some homes have gable windows, which jut up from the slope of the roof, and need to be framed separately. A large greenhouse may do best with a Sawtooth-style roof. Your roofing contractor will know just what to do, no matter what unique situation your home may have. Unless there has been extensive damage or a dramatic remodel is desired, roofs will be laid without reframing the underlying structure.

 

Shingles are the most common roofing material worldwide, and are made of many different materials. Wood and slate shingles were common in the past, but are rarely used today. Asbestos-based shingles are obviously not used today, and should be replaced as soon as possible on any existing roof. Terra cotta tiles are popular, and match beautifully with certain styles of architecture. The most common shingles in the US today are asphalt, on a fiberglass base (more flame resistant than old paper-based asphalt shingles).

 

Shingle roofs are carefully laid, with each layer overlapping the one before to provide a solid, waterproof surface. Over time, wooden or asphalt shingles will erode and eventually need to be replaced. Sometimes, only a few shingles will need to be replaced, but other times the entire roof will need to be taken down and begun again. Only a licensed contractor can determine the extent of the damage – please do not go for a walk on your roof!

 

Tile-based roofs like slate, ceramic, or terra cotta will not erode the same way that wood or asphalt will, but they are brittle and prone to breakage. They are not suitable for any area where things could fall on the roof, which can shatter the tiles and require immediate repair.

 

Metal is another option to be explored for roofing. Metal roofs do not need to be replaced regularly like shingles and tiles, and rarely suffer damage that requires repair. Metal roofs are often made with recycled materials, so they are very environmentally friendly. They can be installed in many colors and textures, and do not have to have the bright industrial look that many people associate with them.

 

Skylights have been around for ages, and are still popular for everyone who wants to let a little extra sunlight into their homes. The perfect time to install one is when the roof is already under construction, but they can be inserted into any roof at any time.

 

Solar panels are a popular investment in recent years. Once installed, the panels can provide all the energy your home requires, and may even earn you money as your unused energy goes back to the grid. Solar panels have specific needs in order to be effective, and are not always possible for all homes. They have a high initial cost, but will pay for themselves in a few short years of reduced energy costs, and may earn you a tax credit to help defray the cost.

 

Roofing doesn’t have to be a scary process. If you’ve got a leak or a scruffy patch, take a deep breath and contact a contractor to discuss your options.


WALL IT UP: CREATE YOUR DREAM HOME WITH EASY DRYWALL INSTALLATION OR REPAIR AND PAINT IN EVERY COLOR

Posted on by dwadmin in Home Remodeling Comments Off

WALL IT UP: CREATE YOUR DREAM HOME WITH EASY DRYWALL INSTALLATION OR REPAIR AND PAINT IN EVERY COLOR

 

Over time, interior walls take a beating. Kids, pets, cooking, and busy living really leave their mark. If your walls are looking a bit rough, here is some information to help you decide how to spruce them up.

 

Drywall Installation

 

Nearly every home and business today has walls and ceilings constructed of drywall boards, also called sheetrock, wallboard, or plasterboard. Drywall is pretty simple: the core is primarily composed of gypsum plaster, wrapped on both sides with thick paper. It is manufactured in a few standardized sizes (including extra-thick ones that provide fire resistance), so it is easy to choose the right pieces, as well as easy to transport to any location.

 

Wall boards are screwed directly onto the wall frame, or studs, with drywall screws. When pieces of board need to be cut, all that’s needed is a measuring tape, a simple T-square, and a utility knife to cut through the board (some installers may use a saw to expedite the process).

 

When the boards are up, the installation crew goes over the whole thing again, this time with joint tape and joint compound (also known as “float and tape”). The seams between boards are covered with a layer of papery joint tape, and each joint as well as each screw hole is covered with a splash of mudlike joint compound. This process smoothes the surface of the wall and prepares it for the next step.

 

Drywall Repair and Replacement

 

One of the perks of using drywall to construct walls is the ease of installation. Another is the ease of replacement. If a wall is damaged, it is simple to fix. For example, imagine a wall that has had a hole knocked in it by a doorknob. Using a drywall saw, your contractor will cut out a square of wall around the hole. He will then carefully measure the hole and cut a corresponding piece of new drywall to fit. It is then a simple thing to fit the new piece into the wall, apply the joint tape and compound, and paint over the repaired area to match the rest of the wall.

 

What if your wall has bigger problems, like very large holes, mold, or water damage? That’s easy too! Entire sheets of wallboard, or even the entire wall, can be uninstalled quickly and removed from your home. Then it’s just like starting from the beginning like a new installation. If your wall is easily exposed to water, like in a bathroom, you should talk to your contractor about greenboard or cementboard, which are more resistant to water damage.

 

Painting

 

When your new walls are up, there’s nothing else strictly necessary to be done. If you like grey paper with off-white lines and splotches of joint compound, this is perfect. But if you’d like some color, it’s time for paint! Every hardware and home improvement store has a huge selection of paint brands and paint colors, in any color you could wish for. You can gather chips of each color that you like so you can see what it looks like in your home, and many stores sell sample-size amounts of paint so you can paint a swatch on the wall for a better comparison.

 

Paint is inexpensive and easy to apply, so you don’t need to feel like you’re committed to one color for life. If you dislike the color you chose or just want a change after a while, paint is easy to change – especially now with advanced primer formulas that make it easier to cover up old colors.

 

Paint is available in a number of finishes, from flat to ultra gloss. Your contractor can explain the differences and help you decide which is best for your space (for example, glossy paint is easier to clean so it’s great for rooms that get messy).

 

Painting is a simple process on its surface, and many homeowners opt to do it themselves, with good results. This is an option for you too. But before you go out and buy rollers and brushes and dropcloths, consider hiring a contractor to do it for you. They already own all the equipment, and have lots of experience, so you know the job will be done quickly and correctly, so you can enjoy your new walls even faster!


PLUMBING DOESN’T HAVE TO BE SCARY: WATER PIPES ARE EVERYWHERE IN YOUR HOME AND ARE EASY TO MAINTAIN.

Posted on by dwadmin in Home Remodeling Comments Off

PLUMBING DOESN’T HAVE TO BE SCARY: WATER PIPES ARE EVERYWHERE IN YOUR HOME AND ARE EASY TO MAINTAIN.

 

Most people only think about plumbers as the guy to call when the sink leaks, but professional plumbers deal with so much more! Their expertise covers every water-using part of your house, from everything in your bathroom, to your water heater and ice maker, and, of course, the kitchen sink. Whenever something watery goes wrong in your home, you need a plumber.

 

Hidden Pipes

 

There may be more pipes in your home than you think. Your home gets all the water it needs, either from a municipal water connection or from a well, through one central pipe, which branches out and distributes water to all the other places in your home that need it. These pipes run under your floors and sometimes through your walls. Most of the time, they take care of themselves and you never need to think about them.

 

Sometimes, though, a problem will develop. The sealant around a joint between two pipes can deteriorate and begin to leak, for example. You may hear dripping within a wall, but usually your first sign of an interior leak will be dampness on the wall or other signs of water damage like discoloration. If you notice any of these signs, you need to call for help immediately. Even a tiny leak can cause immense damage, by seeping into your drywall, weakening the wooden studs, eroding your foundation, soaking your insulation, and inviting mold and bacteria into all those places!

 

Take a deep breath – that kind of problem is rare as long as your plumbing was installed by a licensed plumber.

 

Another cause of interior leaks is accidental in nature. A homeowner is innocently hanging a new picture on the wall when suddenly … her hand is wet! Without realizing it, she punctured a pipe with the nail. If she calls quickly, a plumber can patch the hole or replace that section of pipe and prevent any further damage. The pipes within the walls may be difficult to locate, so take care whenever you redecorate. And if you’re starting a DIY home improvement project, please make sure that you know which walls are safe to knock down!

 

Bathrooms

 

The water from the pipes has to come out somewhere, right? Usually it comes out of a faucet, into a tub, sink, or shower. These don’t require a whole lot of maintenance– just wash them every now and then. There will be a smear of sealant around the fixtures to prevent leaks and keep them stable, which you should check occasionally to make sure it’s not deteriorating. The pipes under the sinks feature bendy “traps” that are designed to catch things like jewelry that may fall down the drain. Many a woman has been relieved to learn that her prized earring was not lost forever thanks to this handy configuration. Tubs and showers are carefully installed and liberally protected with sealants to prevent leaks into the walls and floor, and should only require a normal cleaning and a quick check every so often to make sure everything is in place.

 

Another common consumer of water in the home is, of course, the toilet. Everyone in the home uses it a couple times a day, and they are built to be reliable and sturdy. These, of course, should be cleaned frequently to prevent any kind of buildup from interfering with normal usage. If the commode in your bathroom should ever leak, there is a handy shutoff switch on the pipe on the back side. Just reach back, turn it until the water stops, and call for some help!

 

Appliances

 

There are other things in your home that use water that you may not even think about. Your water heater, hidden in a closet somewhere, your icemaking refrigerator, hidden in plain sight, and your clothes washer, hidden under the laundry, are some examples. These all have pipes going into and out of them. They also mostly take care of themselves, but may require occasional maintenance. If your water contains high levels of minerals such as calcium, you may need to have them cleaned often or even replaced, as the minerals build up on the inside of the water reservoirs. A filter may help with this problem. A simple call to a local plumber can answer your questions about your water-using appliances – he works with homes in your area every day and will know exactly what solution works best!

 

You may be scared of your water pipes, but there’s no reason to be. Most of the time, they take care of themselves. When a problem arises, your local plumber or contractor is ready and willing to help. If you’re experiencing a problem with your water, the first thing to do is Don’t Panic. Keep a monkey wrench around and make sure you know where the water shutoff valves are. Just give it a twist (a general rule is “Righty Tighty, Lefty Loose-y”), gather up a few towels, and get on the phone!


WHAT TO EXPECT AFTER A HOUSE FIRE: THE RESTORATION AND REBUILDING PROCESS EXPLAINED IN SIMPLE TERMS.

Posted on by dwadmin in Home Remodeling Comments Off

WHAT TO EXPECT AFTER A HOUSE FIRE: THE RESTORATION AND REBUILDING PROCESS EXPLAINED IN SIMPLE TERMS.

 

A fire in your home can be a devastating experience. After the threat of injury has passed, there is still such a large mess left behind. It’s a problem that we all hope not to deal with, and it can be difficult to know what to do or where to begin. But worry no more – we are here to help guide you through the cleanup and restoration process to bring your home back to life, so you can move on.

 

Small fires

 

A small fire, such as a contained grease fire in your kitchen, may only require a good cleaning and a few simple repairs. Hot water, soap, and several scrubbing sponges, along with some elbow grease, can clean up the mess and help you assess the damage underneath.

 

After the ashes and debris are gone, you may find that your countertops, cabinetry, or flooring have scuffs or scars and need repairs or replacement. All of these items are made of many types of materials, but in many cases, your contractor can remove only the damaged section and replace with a matching piece, so you can’t even tell there ever was a fire. With a small area to repair, the demolition and re-installation will take only a short time – perhaps only a day or less!

 

If any appliances were involved in or very close to the fire, such as your stove or refrigerator, they should be checked by a certified repairman to make sure that no permanent damage has been done and they are safe to use again. If a small kitchen appliance, like a blender, was involved, you may want to just replace it – those items are not intended to withstand extreme temperatures.

 

Medium fires

 

Larger fires that don’t cause major damage still cause problems that will need repair. If your bedroom lamp shorts out and causes an electrical fire, you will definitely require the services of a licensed electrician. He or she will need to check the shorted appliance and all the wiring that it was connected to, to find the source of the problem and fix it. The fire may have damaged large sections of the internal wiring in your house, which will need to be replaced before you can use it again.

 

A fire in the living areas of your home may cause extensive damage to flooring and walls, as well as your furniture and other belongings. Carpet that has been burned will often need to be completely removed, including unaffected areas, and replaced. Carpeting can be removed and replaced in a day. The repair options and time for other types of flooring depends largely on the type of flooring and the extent of the damage – speak to your remodeling contractor for details. Smoke or soot damage on a wall may only require a good cleaning and repainting, but flame damage (or water damage from extinguishing efforts) will usually require replacement of the drywall. This process requires removal and reinstallation of your wallboards, but shouldn’t take more than a day or two for a small area.

 

Large fires

 

When the fire is large enough to cause major damage, the repairs will be correspondingly large. No matter what the original cause of a fire this large, if it spread to multiple rooms and burned for a long period of time, there will be an extensive period of cleanup to assess the damage and determine the course of repairs.

 

After the debris has been cleared away, demolition will begin. Damaged walls, floors, and ceilings that need repair will be carefully removed to avoid causing any further damage. This will provide a clean slate to begin rebuilding. Walls, floors, and other structural elements are built brand new. Once the structure is sound again, it’s time to make your house a home again. New walls need paint; new floors need new carpet or other flooring. Choose new appliances, new cabinets, and new fixtures. Make a fresh start with fresh colors and new items!

 

Air quality

 

One thing that many people are concerned about after an interior fire is the air quality. All fires release large amounts of smoke and dangerous gasses such as carbon monoxide into the air. These can be trapped in the house – in the walls and in the fabrics, for example – and can be difficult to remove permanently. All your fabrics like draperies and bedsheets will need to be washed thoroughly, and your upholstered items will need special care as well. Air purifying machines can be purchased or rented to filter the air in your home, and remove the dangerous gasses as well as particulate matter. The smell of smoke is notoriously difficult to remove, but commercial deodorizing products should be able to help with that problem.

 

When you’ve experienced a fire, it can be hard to imagine your life being back to normal. It is our goal to make the rebuilding process as painless as possible so that you don’t have to imagine it – it will be reality.


WOOD, TILE, AND CARPET: THREE POPULAR OPTIONS FOR YOUR FLOOR – MAKE THE RIGHT DECISION FOR YOUR FEET

Posted on by dwadmin in Home Remodeling Comments Off

WOOD, TILE, AND CARPET: THREE POPULAR OPTIONS FOR YOUR FLOOR – MAKE THE RIGHT DECISION FOR YOUR FEET

 

Whether you’re building new, remodeling, or just looking for a big change, flooring is an important part of every room and can make a huge impact on your living space. In the world of floors, there are more choices than you may expect. Three of the most popular floor covering options these days are wood, tile, and carpet. Let’s explore the installation and removal of each of these to help you make the best decision for your space.

 

Wood flooring

Wood flooring is available in both solid and engineered varieties. Solid wood flooring planks are milled from a single piece of timber, while engineered planks are made by combining two or more pieces of timber in layers. These are available in many different woods including cherry, oak, or mahogany, as well as the very popular bamboo. With the exception of special situations such as unusual sub-flooring or an intricate parquet design, most wood flooring is installed by a tongue-and-groove method. The planks are specially designed to fit tightly together, and can be installed rather quickly and with minimum fuss. Both solid and engineered wood planks can be glued directly to the subfloor, but engineered planks can also be “floated.” In such cases, the flooring is not directly attached to the subfloor, which allows the floor some room to adapt, such as to increasing humidity. Wood flooring will typically require some kind of sealant such as oil or polyurethane.

 

Removal of a wood floor obviously depends on how it was installed. A very old wood floor may have been nailed down (not a common practice now) and all those nails will need to be removed. A glued-down floor will be particularly difficult since each piece of wood will need to be removed individually. If you’re removing a wood floor, a floating installation is your friend – they’re definitely the easiest to remove.

 

Tile

Tiles for flooring are available in a few options: ceramic and stone are popular, but there are also cheaper vinyl options for the budget-conscious. Tiles are available in a number of standardized sizes and shapes, and can be mixed and matched to create the style you’re envisioning, from an intricate mosaic to a checkerboard, to a simple traditional grid. They’re also available in a huge variety of colors. Vinyl tiles are available with a handy peel-and-stick option, making installation (on a scrupulously cleaned and leveled subfloor) quick and easy for a skilled worker. Traditional forms of tile need to be laid out carefully, using spacers to ensure an even layout, and when the design is complete, grout is applied between them to solidify the flooring. When the excess grout is removed and the entire floor allowed to set and harden, you have a lovely floor, ready to stand the test of time.

 

Tiles can be a pain to remove, since they’re individually adhered in place. Industrial-grade removers and solvents will generally be required.

 

Carpet

Carpeting is a textile product, and there are infinite variations of it. From cut-pile to needle felted to berber to knotted-pile to tufted and from nylon to wool to acrylic to polyester to polypropylene, there’s a texture and material to suit even the most sensitive feet. Tufted nylon is the most common, though. A quick trip to a home improvement store will provide ample opportunity to see and feel a host of options of texture and material, as well as color. Generally, carpets are all installed by the same method. A special padding is laid over the subfloor and then the carpet is stretched tightly using special tools, and tacked down all around the room. No special care is needed except for an occasional vacuuming. Carpet shows age and wear and will need to be replaced in time.

 

Carpet removal is a relatively simple process of pulling up the tacks and rolling up the carpet and padding. It can be a filthy process though, due to the amount of dirt that can filter down through the fibers. Carpet tiles are becoming popular, especially for commercial spaces. They are affixed with glue and are designed to be easily removed.

 

These aren’t the only options for your floor (linoleum, anyone?), but these three are the most common and most coveted selections. A skilled contractor can guide you through the selection process, all the way to your new floor.


Whirlpool Tubs Are a Great Investment: Install and Maintain Your Tub for Relaxation or Stress Relief

Posted on by dwadmin in Home Remodeling Comments Off

Whirlpool Tubs Are a Great Investment: Install and Maintain Your Tub for Relaxation or Stress Relief

Whirlpool tubs, also known as Jacuzzis or hot tubs, became popular in America in the 1960s. They were a common party destination for young people of that era. While that use hasn’t gone out of style, they’re popular for other reasons these days. The warm water and bubbly jets are excellent for everyday relaxation and stress relief, and also have found many applications for physical therapy and rehabilitation.

 

Selecting a Tub

Whirlpool tubs can be divided into two basic groups. Of course, there are the large tubs, big enough for several people, which are typically what people expect such a tub to look like. But there are also smaller versions available, which are basically a regular-sized tub with jets.

 

Large tubs, generally big enough for at least 2 people, have not lost their popularity. Many couples love to enjoy them together, and they also allow for a single person to stretch out and really relax without being cramped. Many spas, gyms, and therapy centers, as well as gathering places such as hotels, will install one or more very large tubs for multiple people to use.

 

The smaller models are generally intended to fit right in to an average home bathroom. They are the same size (or only slightly larger) than a standard tub, which makes them an excellent choice for people with small spaces who still want to reap the benefits of a whirlpool.

 

Installation of a tub must begin with selecting the space. The tub needs to fit comfortably in the space, allowing for entry and exit as well as the extra machinery and components required to run the tub. When the space has been evaluated and a properly sized tub has been selected and purchased, the installation can begin.

 

Installation

Before beginning installation, remember that this is a complex process, and it will take multiple days. Installation should only be attempted by people who know what they’re doing. The tub and its installation are very expensive, and any mistake could cause big problems.

 

If the tub is being installed in a new construction, the space around it can be designed to suit it. This is substantially easier than installing a tub in an existing space. Taking out old fixtures and plumbing and clearing the space can be complex and time-consuming (not to mention replacing wall or floor coverings). Many people install large tubs on specially-built outdoor decks or patios, partly to enjoy the great outdoors and partly to avoid the demolition involved in indoor installation.

 

When the demolition of an old space is done, or the new space has been created for the tub, the plumbing is next. Drain pipes, input pipes, lots and lots of pipes are required to connect the tub to the rest of your water system. A whirlpool tub also requires power components to run the jets, which should only be installed by a qualified electrician, since the power will be so close to water.

 

When all of the behind-the-scenes components are in place, it’s time to put the tub itself in and hook it all up. Testing the jets and plumbing is crucial before moving on. The tub should be sealed in place with caulking to ensure that no water can leak into the walls and floor. Depending on the amount of demolition (or in a new construction), the walls and floor are next on the list. Tiles are popular for both because they are waterproof and easy to clean.

 

Maintaining Your Tub

Maintaining a whirlpool tub is not difficult, but it does require more work than a standard tub. The jet system needs to be kept clean to prevent corrosion or nasty bacterial growth. Make sure to avoid bath salts and high-sudsing soaps like bubble bath, because they will leave damaging residue in the system. Outdoor tubs should always be kept securely covered to protect it from the elements, and checked often to make sure no problems are arising.

 

A whirlpool tub can be an excellent investment, providing years of relaxation, stress relief, physical therapy, and enjoyment. A well-done installation and regular maintenance will eliminate problems and ensure that your investment is always available whenever you want it.


RECESSED LIGHTING: TAKE RECESS FROM UNSIGHTLY LIGHT FIXTURES WITH STYLISH NEW FITTINGS FOR YOUR HOME

Posted on by dwadmin in Home Remodeling Comments Off

RECESSED LIGHTING: TAKE RECESS FROM UNSIGHTLY LIGHT FIXTURES WITH STYLISH NEW FITTINGS FOR YOUR HOME

 

Recessed lighting was first developed in the 1930s, but it’s become very popular in recent years. It’s easy to see why – recessed lights are sleek and stylish, they fit into any décor, and they never need to be dusted. If you’re building a new home or addition, remodeling, or just looking for a change in your light fixtures, this is an option worth exploring.

 

Ceiling Fixtures

The average light fixture is attached to a ceiling (or sometimes a wall) and hangs down or protrudes. They’re usually covered by decorative glass. Most people don’t think too much about their lighting, but they have to dust it often, and there’s always a chance of broken glass. And if the room is redecorated, the glass fixture may need to be replaced to fit in, adding to the cost of the décor. These problems are all eliminated with recessed lighting. A recessed light fixture is simple. The light bulb is enclosed in a canister-like housing and mounted inside the ceiling, flush with the outer surface. This gives the impression of a completely flat, clean ceiling, with light shining from a perfectly placed spot.

 

The exposed part of the housing can be trimmed in many different styles if desired. Recessed housings are made by a large number of manufacturers now, and a wide variety can be seen at a lighting or home improvement store. Recessed lighting is particularly popular for kitchens, because they require little or no cleaning and give a sleek, modern look to the room. Guests can focus their attention on the beautiful butcher-block island, rather than the dusty and greasy lighting. It’s also popular for bathrooms. Special housings are available on the market to control brightness, diffusion, and directionality of the light, so it can be tailored to suit the specific needs of any space, from a reading nook to a poker table to a laundry room.

 

Under-Cabinet Lighting

A specific kind of recessed lighting is designed especially to be installed under cabinets or shelves. These are available as puck (spot) lights or as linear strips, and can easily be installed to light a work surface or display area. These are excellent for illuminating countertops in kitchens, work benches in garages, desks in offices, or any kind of display shelf or cabinet. They can even be installed inside a cabinet, making it easier to see the contents of your pantry or other storage area.

 

Many Different Varieties

Recessed lighting is available in incandescent, fluorescent, and LED varieties, which each have different characteristics. Incandescent lights are cheap, easy to find, and easy to maintain. However, they have short lives and use more energy than the others. Fluorescents have improved a lot in recent years – they provide excellent color and are highly efficient as well as having a very long life. Fluorescent fixtures are sometimes not easily concealed, though. Finally, LED lamps can last 10 years or more and are extremely energy-efficient. They are also the most expensive of the three varieties, and they generate heat which can limit their usefulness in recessed lighting.

There are four different categories of recessed light housings, according to UL requirements. There are two categories each for new construction and remodel styles, and each of them has an IC (insulation contact) and non-IC category. IC housings are to be used when there will be contact between the housing and any insulation, to prevent fire hazards. Non-IC housings must be at least 3 inches from insulation material. Usually, these categories will not impact your style choices at all, since only the trim of the housing is visible.

Recessed lighting is a great design choice for any room in your home, but like any remodeling task, great care should be used in installation. To prevent fire hazards and ensure that the wiring is safely done, a professional electrician or contractor should consult with you about placement of your new lights and do the installation. Your family will be able to enjoy the new light