Bathroom Remodeling Upgrades
Style, Comfort and Performance Drive Bathroom Remodeling Upgrades
Each year Hanley Wood’s Remodeling magazine produces its Cost vs. Value report chronicling the most common remodeling projects and what homeowners can expect in terms of the return on their investment.
The top five projects that deliver the best ROI include attic insulation, manufactured stone veneer, garage door replacement, entry door replacement (steel) and minor kitchen remodel. Four of these focus on reducing energy costs which brings about greatest savings and by contrast, a midrange bathroom remodel only recoups 66% of the average cost of $18,000.
What People Really Want
While energy efficiency projects provide value in both the long and short term, for resale, kitchens and baths are what prospective buyers are looking for. According to Houzz, an online platform for home remodeling and design, bringing homeowners and home professionals together in a uniquely visual community, nearly three quarters of homeowners who reported upgrading their bathroom stated that the footprint will remain consistent with the current size of the bathroom.
This is a wise decision that helps keep costs down and allows homeowners to focus on the finishing touches that creates a more spa-like space. The Houzz research also shows that 84% are upgrading their showers and 67% are increasing the size of the shower.
Frameless Shower Glass Doors
Fiberglass is out, replaced with tile and tubs, unless freestanding they are also out. There has been a dramatic shift from framed products to frameless and semi-frameless products. Frameless shower doors offer a clean and contemporary look while making the bathroom look more spacious.
There is a wide array of options available to create a fully customized shower experience that includes heavy glass for increased durability and added safety with glass to glass hinging and header-less designs for cleaner lines, more robust hardware fittings and additional glass processing. Whether it is an irregularly shaped space or over-sized doors, custom fitted enclosures are the best option. This allows homeowners to create a unique space to accommodate many of today’s spa-like features such as body sprayers, steam showers or multiple shower heads.
Flexibility With Old Houses – Basco “Cantour Doors and Panels”
For more “standard” applications, and delivering high-end aesthetics and durable construction, Basco Manufacturing has combined the best features of custom-built, luxury shower enclosures with the functionality and attractive pricing of standard models. Their new Cantour Door and Panel delivers luxury quality and industry-leading adjustment flexibility of up to six inches which is perfect for a retrofit project since walls are never plumb and square.
The Cantour Adjustable Width Door and Panel has a wide variety of opening sizes with its modular design and five different size glass panels and two different size glass door panels, which are all available at a 76-inch height. The design makes the range of adjustment ideal for heavy glass doors.
Hardware is available in three of Basco’s most popular finish options: chrome, brushed nickel and oil rubbed bronze. Additional features include 3/8-inch swing door with offset pivot hinge and 1/2-inch inline panel, with the Clear and AquaGlideXP clear glass options. AquaGlideXP is a glass coating is an ultra-protective coating that bonds with the glass to increase sheen and luster and prevent spotting, soap scum and mineral deposits.
Since the door and panel sizes are standardized they are more easily stocked and available at big box hardware retailers that results in less downtime and eliminates the upfront time to build the customized pieces.
Photo courtesy of Basco
While the shower enclosure is typically the largest visual aspect of the bathroom there is one major force that courses through the entire room, water. That is why choosing fixtures that not only fit the style and décor of the room, but also need to deliver the performance homeowners expect, is essential.
Bathroom Fixtures with Form and Function
One company that has been able to effectively marry form and function is American Standard . Their Fluent Faucet Collection for the bathroom offers technologically-advanced utility with water-saving performance and easy installation features.
These faucets showcase a fluid, transitional design inspired by the effortless movement of water. The Fluent bathroom collection includes the most common configurations such as a single handle, 4-inch centerset (made for basins with three holes and have handles that are 4 inches apart) and 8-inch widespread lavatory faucets; as well as a deck-mount tub filler with optional hand shower and a bath/shower set.
Photo courtesy of American Standard
One of the biggest frustrations of a single handle faucet is being able to accurately dial in the ideal water temperature. The Fluent Single Control bathroom faucet has generous rotation that allows users to achieve the exact water temperature they desire. To help prevent scalding, this faucet also features an adjustable hot limit safety stop to regulate the amount of hot water that mixes with cold to flow through the faucet.
Photo courtesy of American Standard
This collection also includes a generously sized showerhead, featuring a 7-inch face plate that delivers a more satisfying, drenching spray for a relaxing shower experience. Plus, a longer, stylized tub spout offers better reach and greater functionality in the bathtub.
“Speed Drain” Connect Means Less Work For You
Faucets prove to be particularly difficult to install as most of the work has to been done from below. With the sink taking up most of the available room, connections can prove difficult. American Standard has greatly simplified this process with their exclusive Speed Connect Drain. The pre-assembled drain seals tightly so water stays in the sink, and the lift rod comes set to the correct height and never comes loose. In addition, the widespread faucet models offer the new Speed Connect Handle installation system, which allows the handle assembly to be easily dropped in from the top.
This video helps demonstrate How the Speed Connect System Works, check it out!
The Fluent lavatory models deliver water savings without sacrificing performance. They provide 1.5 gallons per minute (gpm) flow rate and incorporate pressure-compensating aerators. The bath faucets provide 32 percent water savings over standard models and meet stringent WaterSense-certification criteria from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
The Fluent lavatory faucet collection is available in three attractive, long-lasting finishes: polished chrome, oil rubbed bronze and satin nickel.
Warm Tile Floors – Electric Radiant Heat
No amount of insulation can fully warm ceramic tile as effectively as radiant floor heating. Here, in the Northeast, winter mornings can be brutal but take comfort in the fact that there is an easy to install and cost-effective solution, radiant floor heating.
With more than 20 years of experience and in excess of 2.1 million systems sold in 60 countries, Warmup is an internationally leader manufacturer of radiant heating and they continue to deliver innovative heating solutions today. They offer a number of configurations that work with the most common flooring types. With a high degree of customizations, thermostats, underlayment and accessories, installation is made easier and quicker.
Electric in-floor heating systems generate an even heat throughout the space and will not disturb dust, reducing the chance of possible allergic reactions. What’s more, radiant heated floors reduce noise levels and the amount of dry air in the home.
WarmUp “StickyMat” is Easy to Install, Efficient and Affordable
Warmup has a new, easy to install solution that will save a ton of time and money, StickyMat. The system is a series of small 3 ft. wide mats designed for bathroom installations under tile & stone. The product carries a 30-year warranty that is homeowner transferable and with their SafetyNet installation guarantee, Warmup will replace any damaged system for a free replacement.
What makes it unique is that the sections have a dual-adhesive with double sided tape as well as a pressure-sensitive adhesive on the entire mesh allowing for a fast set-up. Individual sections can be combined and patch-worked into the room to customize the coverage to eliminate waste. Each mat is built with a dual-conductor cable with a single power cord to connect to the thermostat.
Smart Pre-Programmed, Easy-to-Use Thermostats
Used to be that s flip of the switch would turn radiant heating on and another would turn it off. As technology advances in other consumer products, the residual effect is that traditional building products reap the benefits and their 4iE thermostat in no exception.
Photo courtesy of Warmup
This Spring Warmup will be introducing a new thermostat that is a serious upgrade from the hugely popular 3iE system. Controlled from a smartphone, tablet or computer, the 4iE Smart WiFi thermostat learns how the radiant heating and the furnace is used and the unique way the house reacts. It automatically suggests ways to save energy, such as what temperature should be set by offering graphical displays and comparisons.
For more information, check out this video starring yours truly!