An Inside Look At Modern Home Heating Solutions

an-inside-look-at-modern-home-heating-solutions

Say No To Boring Shower Heads

Fotor03251124351The obvious objective of taking a shower is to cleanse your body. But, if you’re like me, you know the shower is also a time to enjoy 10-15 minutes of relaxation and thought. There seemingly is nothing that can interrupt this small brake in time. That’s why, having a shower head that you love is really important.  I’ve found a few that are on my wishlist, check them out below. What would be your ideal shower head?

1. 90 Degree Chrome Eco-Performance Rain Shower Shower Head

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With ultra–modern styling, the 90 Degree collection is a study in minimalism. Geometric forms, squared corners and straight lines create an urban focal point for today’s contemporary baths. (Moen)

2. WaterTile®

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WaterTile bodysprays lie virtually flush to the wall and can be placed almost anywhere. This square 54-nozzle configuration delivers a relaxing spray for a soothing hydrotherapy experience. (Kohler)

3. Symbol®

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Inspired by nature, this Symbol multifunction handshower brings a fluid, organic design to your bathroom. It provides four distinct sprays, including an all-encompassing wide spray, an invigorating massage spray to help ease aches and pains, a gentle aerated spray, and a water-conserving reduced-flow spray. (Kohler)

4. Moxie

Your music. Your shower. Your time. To chill out. To sing. Refresh. Energize. Escape. The Moxie shower head + wireless speaker delivers up to 7 hours of music, news and more by pairing wirelessly with your device enabled with Bluetooth® technology. (Kohler)

5. Pegasus Sunflower 4 in. Dual Showerhead

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Twin 4 inch Sunflowers are made of solid brass with 360 degree swivel brass ball joints. It features a long extension arm with 2 elbows for more space reach and flexibility operation. (Home Depot)

The Best Temperature for Your Home

 

How often do you find yourself hanging out with somebody who won’t think twice about keeping their air conditioning blasting hot or cool air? It’s as if being temporarily uncomfortable would be the worst thing that could happen that very instant. Deciding to adjust the thermostat every 15 minutes is justifiable if a person is being considerate for their sick pet, or if their arts & crafts media are melting. If it’s purely for convenience, and done so as to not upset their complacent keel, then that’s not cool, man. Well, maybe except for the days of extreme heat in the summer. It can be a grueling feat to endure come bedtime, in more densely populated locales.

the-best-temperature-for-your-home

Folding Toilet Saves Water, Takes Up Less Space

WATER-TOILETToilet water accounts for more than 26 percent of the total household water use in the U.S. – more than showers, faucets or even clothes washers — according to the EPA. Humphreys and Whiteley have proven what many of us may have suspected – sending 6 liters, or about 1.5 gallons down the drain per flush for standard toilets is totally unnecessary.

 

 

Saying Goodbye to Your Old Furnace

saying-goodbye-to-your-old-furnace

Anatomy Of A Happy Home

anatomy-of-a-happy-homeclick on the image for a larger view.

 

What Your Kitchen Says About You

Kitchen Saysw About You

Infographic: How to Organize Your Fridge

 

We throw a lot of food away each year and much of that comes from food going bad due to less-than-ideal storage. This graphic from PartSelect serves as a handy at-a-glance guide to keeping refrigerated food its freshest.

 

Organizing Your Fridge

7 Smart Strategies for Kitchen Remodeling

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Follow these seven strategies to get the most financial gain on your kitchen remodel.

A significant portion of kitchen remodeling costs may be recovered by the value the project brings to your home. Kitchen remodels in the $50,000 to $60,000 range recoup about 74% of the initial project cost at the home’s resale, according to recent data from Remodeling Magazine’s Cost vs. Value Report.

A minor kitchen remodel of about $19,000 does even better, returning more than 82% of your investment.

To maximize your return on investment, follow these seven strategies to keep you on budget and help you make smart choices.

1. Plan, Plan, Plan

Planning your kitchen remodel should take more time than the actual construction. If you plan well, the amount of time you’re inconvenienced by construction mayhem will be minimized. Plus, you’re more likely to stay on budget.

How much time should you spend planning? The National Kitchen and Bath Association recommends at least six months. That way, you won’t be tempted to change your mind during construction and create change orders, which will inflate construction costs and hurt your return on investment.

Some tips on planning:

Study your existing kitchen: How wide is the doorway into your kitchen? It’s a common mistake many homeowners make: Buying the extra-large fridge only to find they can’t get it in the doorway. To avoid mistakes like this, create a drawing of your kitchen with measurements for doorways, walkways, counters, etc. And don’t forget height, too.

Think about traffic patterns: Work aisles should be a minimum of 42 inches wide and at least 48 inches wide for households with multiple cooks.

Design with ergonomics in mind: Drawers or pull-out shelves in base cabinets; counter heights that can adjust up or down; a wall oven instead of a range: These are all features that make a kitchen accessible to everyone — and a pleasure to work in.

Related: Test Your Ergonomic Design Knowledge

Plan for the unforeseeable: Even if you’ve planned down to the number of nails you’ll need in your remodel, expect the unexpected. Build in a little leeway for completing the remodel. Want it done by Thanksgiving? Then plan to be done before Halloween.

Choose all your fixtures and materials before starting: Contractors will be able to make more accurate bids, and you’ll lessen the risk of delays because of back orders.

Don’t be afraid to seek help: A professional designer can simplify your kitchen remodel. Pros help make style decisions, foresee potential problems, and schedule contractors. Expect fees around $50 to $150 per hour, or 5% to 15% of the total cost of the project.

More tips on planning a kitchen remodel:

Keep the same footprint
Get real about appliances
Don’t underestimate the power of lighting
Be quality-conscious
Add storage, not space
Communicate clearly with your remodelers

2. Keep the Same Footprint

Nothing will drive up the cost of a remodel faster than changing the location of plumbing pipes and electrical outlets, and knocking down walls. This is usually where unforeseen problems occur.

So if possible, keep appliances, water fixtures, and walls in the same location. 

Not only will you save on demolition and reconstruction costs, you’ll cut the amount of dust and debris your project generates.

More tips on planning a kitchen remodel:

Plan, plan, plan
Get real about appliances
Don’t underestimate the power of lighting
Be quality-conscious
Add storage, not space
Communicate clearly with your remodelers

3. Get Real About Appliances

It’s easy to get carried away when planning your new kitchen. A six-burner commercial-grade range and luxury-brand refrigerator may make eye-catching centerpieces, but they may not fit your cooking needs or lifestyle.

Appliances are essentially tools used to cook and store food. Your kitchen remodel shouldn’t be about the tools, but the design and functionality of the entire kitchen.

So unless you’re an exceptional cook who cooks a lot, concentrate your dollars on long-term features that add value, such as cabinets and flooring.

Then choose appliances made by trusted brands that have high marks in online reviews and Consumer Reports.

More tips on planning a kitchen remodel:

Plan, plan, plan
Keep the same footprint
Don’t underestimate the power of lighting
Be quality-conscious
Add storage, not space
Communicate clearly with your remodelers

4. Don’t Underestimate the Power of Lighting

Lighting can make a world of difference in a kitchen. It can make it look larger and brighter. And it will help you work safely and efficiently. You should have two different types of lighting in your kitchen:

Task Lighting: Under-cabinet lighting should be on your must-do list, since cabinets create such dark work areas. And since you’re remodeling, there won’t be a better time to hard-wire your lights. (Here’s more about under-cabinet lights.) Plan for at least two fixtures per task area to eliminate shadows. Pendant lights are good for islands and other counters without low cabinets. Recessed lights and track lights work well over sinks and general prep areas with no cabinets overhead.

Ambient lighting: Flush-mounted ceiling fixtures, wall sconces, and track lights create overall lighting in your kitchen. Include dimmer switches to control intensity and mood.

Related: How to Choose the Best Bulb for the Job

More tips on planning a kitchen remodel:

Plan, plan, plan
Keep the same footprint
Get real about appliances
Be quality-conscious
Add storage, not space
Communicate clearly with your remodelers

5. Be Quality-Conscious

Functionality and durability should be top priorities during kitchen remodeling. Resist low-quality bargains, and choose products that combine low maintenance with long warranty periods. Solid-surface countertops, for instance, may cost a little more, but with the proper care, they’ll look great for a long time.

And if you’re planning on moving soon, products with substantial warranties are a selling advantage.

Related:

Kitchen Remodeling Decisions You’ll Never Regret

White: The Savvy and Chic Kitchen Color Choice

More tips on planning a kitchen remodel:

Plan, plan, plan
Keep the same footprint
Get real about appliances
Don’t underestimate the power of lighting
Add storage, not space
Communicate clearly with your remodelers

6. Add Storage, Not Space

Storage will never go out of style, but if you’re sticking with the same footprint, here are a couple of ideas to add more:

Install cabinets that reach the ceiling: They may cost more — and you might need a stepladder — but you’ll gain valuable storage space for Christmas platters and other once-a-year items. In addition, you won’t have to dust cabinet tops.

Hang it up: Mount small shelving units on unused wall areas and inside cabinet doors; hang stock pots and large skillets on a ceiling-mounted rack; and add hooks to the backs of closet doors for aprons, brooms, and mops.

Related: Storage Options that Pack More Space in Your Kitchen

More tips on planning a kitchen remodel:

Plan, plan, plan
Keep the same footprint
Get real about appliances
Don’t underestimate the power of lighting
Be quality-conscious
Communicate clearly with your remodelers

7. Communicate Clearly With Your Remodelers

Establishing a good rapport with your project manager or construction team is essential for staying on budget. To keep the sweetness in your project:

Drop by the project during work hours: Your presence broadcasts your commitment to quality.

Establish a communication routine: Hang a message board on site where you and the project manager can leave daily communiqués. Give your email address and cell phone number to subs and team leaders.

Set house rules: Be clear about smoking, boom box noise levels, available bathrooms, and appropriate parking.

Be kind: Offer refreshments (a little hospitality can go a long way), give praise when warranted, and resist pestering them with conversation, jokes, and questions when they are working. They’ll work better when refreshed and allowed to concentrate on work.

More tips on planning a kitchen remodel:

Plan, plan, plan
Keep the same footprint
Get real about appliances
Don’t underestimate the power of lighting
Be quality-conscious
Add storage, not space