Bathroom Remodel - Don't Just Think Style
When doing a bathroom remodel make sure you choose quality products
when designing your bathroom. Fixtures, tubs, plumbing, toilets,
showers, flooring, and paint are all addressed.
If building a new home is in your future, chances are you're inundated
with paint chips, fabric swatches, tile samples and carpet remnants.
You probably also have a collection of home magazines tagged
with your favorite design ideas.
But while aesthetics are important,
especially in a powder room or a master bath, it is equally important
to ensure the building materials and decorative fixtures you choose for
your new bathroom have lasting quality.
There are so many articles written
about design and style options for the bathroom but very few
which focus on functionality and long-term reliability; but if you don't
invest in superior products, you may find your beautiful furnishings
ruined by mold or mildew or a plumbing leak from inferior
That is why it is critical to not only research the items that will
give your bath "sizzle" but also
years of worry-free performance.
Although they may look similar, not all faucets are created equal. Look for faucets
constructed of high-quality materials. A quality faucet will
give you superior performance and durability, and provide a stylish
addition to your room.
Because a faulty metal washer is the usual cause of faucet leaks, install a washerless,
cartridge-based faucet. With these faucets, you don't need
to worry about replacing worn-out or ill-fitting washers. And while
you may pay a bit more for a quality faucet, in the long-run you will
be glad you did.
Although in the past metal pipe (in the form of galvanized steel or copper) was
the only material available for plumbing purposes, today
there are alternative materials. CPVC (chlorinated polyvinyl chloride)
plumbing systems, for example, offer a number of benefits over
Primarily, the system will never pit or corrode, which
reduces the risk of premature failures and costly re-piping, in
addition to possible property damage.
CPVC systems are also highly energy efficient with natural insulating properties
that keep hot water hotter and cold water colder than metallic
In addition, condensation, which is a common problem
with metallic pipes and can cause drip damage to walls and foundation,
is virtually eliminated.
CPVC piping also maintains water quality. There is no leaching or metal contamination
into the water supply, so there are no related health concerns.
And unlike copper pipe which can form a thick layer of hard minerals
(scale) that can reduce the pipe's water flow and water pressure,
a CPVC plumbing system will maintain full water flow capacity throughout
the pipe's entire service life.
The material also resists water
hammer (banging pipes) and minimizes water flow noise for quieter operation.
Features Set Toilets Apart
Under government standards, all new toilets sold today must only use 1.6 gallons
of water or less per flush, but that hasn't stopped manufacturers
from introducing other innovations. For example, many toilets now offer
extra large, glazed trap-ways to help eliminate clogs.
A power gravity
flushing system is another feature that can prevent you from plunging.
Lightweight, Energy-Efficient Tubs
Just a few years ago cast iron bathtubs dominated the market, but today acrylic
tubs are gaining in popularity and are estimated to account
for 40 percent of bathtub sales. As compared to cast iron, acrylic
tubs are less expensive and lighter weight.
Because they are composed of
a non-porous, high-grade plastic, they retain heat which means hot water
stays hotter for a longer period of time while cast iron actually
absorbs heat. Acrylic is also the material of choice over fiberglass since
it is stronger and more durable.
Safety in the Shower
For the shower, invest in a pressure-balanced shower system which automatically
adjusts to changes in water temperature, avoiding the
sudden blast of hot or cold water commonly referred to as "shower shock."
Even when running
a dishwasher or flushing a toilet, the valve ensures
that the water remains a constant temperature to keep the shower consistent,
comfortable and safe.
Some shower systems even feature temperature memory to keep
water temperature consistent from the time the water is turned
off until the next time it is turned back on.
If you have an elderly
person or children living in your new home, you may also want to
consider installing a grab bar for extra safety when showering.
Paint That Holds Up Against Moisture
Of course you want the latest colors reflected in your new bathroom, but because
of the room's high humidity, condensation and steam, be sure
to select a paint that is specifically made for the bath.
Bath paint offers
moisture, mold and mildew resistance and will not spot, fade, or
stain. These paints feature a washable finish that is easy to clean and
can be used for interior walls, cabinets, ceilings, trim and doors.
Flooring Made to Last
For the bathroom environment, choose either a vinyl sheet flooring or ceramic
tiles. Experts caution to stay away from self-stick vinyl which
is usually sold in 12" x 12" squares.
Although these squares may be attractive
from an ease of installation aspect, the heat and moisture in the
bathroom may eventually work its way between the cracks of the
squares and cause them to warp or peel off the floor.
A durable vinyl
flooring or ceramic tiles will eliminate these problems and retain
their beauty even after many years of use.
Real Wood Vanities Create Lasting Impression
Walk into any home improvement store or bathroom retailer and you will be confronted
with vanities of all types and sizes. From maple to cherry to
oak, the possibilities are endless. But don't be deceived -- be sure
to select a vanity made of real wood. There are many vanities
that may look like real wood, but on closer examination you will find
a veneer on top of pressed wood.
In a steamy bathroom, the veneer
may peel away from the pressed wood, leaving you with a problem.
So, whether you're looking behind the walls at the plumbing system, or
in the main room at decorative features, don't be consumed by the stylish
images in the latest magazines or the sales pitch at your local
retailer; always go beyond the surface to look for quality.
Courtesy of ARA Content