Renovating a Bathroom? 3 Things to Know Before You Start

Whether you’re selling your home or want more to enjoy it more, renovating a bathroom is definitely a way to go. Not only will it increase your enjoyment of the home but often will add to its value. Whether it’s a master bathroom or a secondary bathroom tucked into a hallway, the remodeling project deserves careful planning before you get started.

Like a kitchen, a bathroom packs a lot of function into a small space. When renovating a bathroom, you must consider the following aspects.

  1. How much value will it bring to your home?
  2. What are your personal goals for the project?
  3. What is your budget for the bathroom renovation?

Increasing the value of your home

Before getting too far into the project when renovating a bathroom, do some homework about your neighborhood. While bathroom remodeling ranks high on the list of property improvements that pay you back when it’s time to sell, it won’t work miracles. Learn what the typical bathroom in your neighborhood is like, and keep that in mind as you make plans for your project.

Real estate websites like Zillow and Realtor.com provide a fairly complete list of properties for sale. You can search by area and these sites include detailed information and photographs. It’s well worth your time to find homes near you that are similar in size and bedroom count. Look at the photos, focusing on the bathrooms. The characteristics of the bathrooms you see will give you an idea of what other bathrooms are like in your neighborhood.

Unless this is a personal passion project, you probably won’t need to exceed the level of finish you see online. When you do sell your home, an appraiser may not give you full credit because the neighborhood home values won’t support such an upgrade.

Goals for a bathroom renovation

Your goals for the project. Clearly articulate why you’re renovating a bathroom. Homeowners often modernize or improve the bathroom to make the home easier to sell. Another common reason is to make it more convenient. Some people want to transform it from plain to luxurious.

It’s important to keep your goals in mind as you start picking the fixtures and finishes. It’s so easy to choose them based on personal preference, and lose sight of how they fit into the final project. You may consider heated towel racks when renovating a bathroom, but in terms of the market, it’s an upgrade that only you may enjoy.

Improvements that benefit you in the short-term and will help you sell the home are those that contribute to energy and water efficiency. Look for toilets, shower heads and faucets that carry the WaterSense label, and as you plan the lighting, use Energy Star LED bulbs.

Universal design has emerged as more than a trend. People are looking for homes that will accommodate them in the future. A bathroom renovation can command a premium on the resale market.

Renovating your bathroom on a budget

Renovating a bathroom is all about making tradeoffs, largely driven by your budget. Nearly every choice you make will impact the bottom line. You can combine what you learned about the value of renovating a bathroom with your goals for the project to establish a baseline for the budget.

The budget will be a collaboration of the two. Although it’s the last step in the process, establishing the budget provides the framework for you and the contractor. You’ll both be able to see where you need to make tradeoffs, and where you can splurge.

Don’t go it alone

Renovating a bathroom takes careful planning to achieve the goals you want for the project. Keep it within your budget and consider tradeoffs carefully.

At Forrest Anderson Plumbing & Air Conditioning we can help you with moving bathroom drains and water lines. We can also help with fixture selection and installation.

 

4 Ways to Clean Toilet Rings

In much the same way that we can tell a tree’s story via the rings in its trunk, your toilet rings tell a compelling story. Except this story is about what is happening in your toilet bowl.  Specifically, rust-like pale brown stains indicate the presence of mineral deposits and hard water.  Conversely, orange, green, and black rings are suggestive of mold.  Pink hued toilet rings result from the presence of Serratia marcescens. This is typically caused by bacteria and can cause, like mold, health problems.

Regardless of the cause, however, toilet rings are at best unsightly, and at worst disgusting. It’s important to find quick and efficient solutions to get rid of these unsightly rings. If you find your personal disgust meter nudging towards the “red,” don’t worry. You can use one of these four cleaning methods to push the needle back towards content.

Pumice Stones

You may already associate these stones with removing unsightly calluses on the heel of your foot. Pumice stones can work to remove hard water toilet rings you find in your bathroom.  Pumice stones are easy to find and usually located in the cleaning or cosmetic section of your favorite store.  Simply soak your stone in the water for a few minutes before rubbing it along the affected area.  After a thorough scrubbing, rinse the affected area and see your efforts rewarded with a sparkling toilet bowl.

Cleaning toilet rings with Coca-Cola

You likely don’t want to associate cleaning the toilet when enjoying your burger and washing it down with America’s favorite soda beverage. Coca-Cola is also excellent for an array of cleaning and degreasing projects around the house.  Keep your bathroom looking great by easily cleaning toilet rings with Coca-Cola.  Simply measure out two to three cups of coke in the toilet bowl, and remember to pour it around the toilet’s rim.  Walk away and let it sit in the bowl while the acids work on the built up stain.

Beating Mold with Borax

Ideal for getting rid of mold-based toilet rings, the cleaning power of Borax is great for getting rid of stubborn toilet rings and stains.  Using a ¼ of a cup of Borax, pour it into the toilet before swishing it completely around with your toilet brush.  Once again, like Coca-Cola, timing is important and you need to let it sit for approximately twenty to thirty minutes before returning for a thorough scrubbing that will remove both mold stains and hard water deposits.

When it is time for Professional Help

All the do-it-yourself techniques in the world might not necessarily help get rid of those stubborn toilet rings owing to the age or condition of your toilet.  After all, porcelain scratches and toilet rings form easily over this scratched surface. Once the toilet is scratched, it may require a total replacement.  Once that happens, and your toilet rings become permanent, you might notice that your entire bathroom could use a sprucing.

It also makes a great time to consider an overall facelift for the bathroom in your life.  Call Forrest Anderson about a bathroom renovation that will make you proud.  Phoenix, Arizona-based, we bring more than seven decades of experience to the table when providing renovation services throughout the Phoenix area.  Call us today, and we can start building your new dream bathroom tomorrow.

Bathtub Rust Removal Techniques

Most homeowners encounter rust in their homes and one of the most prone areas are bathtubs, sinks, and fixtures. In fact, bathtub rust is one of the most unsightly places for rust in your home.

Rust is usually a result of corroding iron and it causes unsightly brown stains. It could also develop from water that has a high iron content or from water that runs through rusty pipelines. Rust is not only unsightly but unhygienic and if left unattended, it could cause various damages. If you are experiencing bathtub rust and would like to get rid of it, here are some tips to help you out.

How to Remove Existing Bathtub Rust

There are numerous products in the market that you can use to remove bathtub rust. However, most of them are formulated with harsh chemicals like bleach that could actually make the problem a lot worse. Bearing that in mind, you can use these natural methods instead.

  1. Combine one part lemon juice or vinegar and one part warm water, spray the mixture on the stain and allow it to sit for a few minutes. Scrub the area with a bristle brush in small circular motions and the rust should disappear.
  2. Combine lemon juice with salt, pour the mixture on the tub rust stain and let it sit for about 10 minutes. Scrub the stain using a toothbrush or a bristle brush and the stain should come off.

How to Prevent Bathtub Rust

Wipe your tub after use

Now that you have gotten rid of the rust stain, it is only natural you want it to stay at bay.

There are various ways you can prevent rust in your bathtub, sinks or fixtures. And one of the best ways is wiping all water after use.

Without any water, there will be no reaction with other minerals. This is similar to keeping a squeegee in the shower to prevent rust or hard water stains.

Metal cans should not be placed in or around the bathtub

Metal cans like shaving cream cans should be kept far from the bathtub.

Water and metal are prone to cause rust anytime they are placed together. And you’re bound to find rust rings where the metal can is sitting.

You can either opt for products that come in plastic bottles or you can find another place to place your cans.

Use a water softener

Usually, hard water contains minerals that cause or contribute to the formation of bathtub rust. One of the best solutions to this problem is investing in a residential water softener. The water softener is attached to your water line and it softens hard water before it reaches your home.

Soft water will not only reduce any chances of bathtub rust but it will be far better for your plumbing system. Your sinks, fixtures, dishwasher, and washing machine will benefit from soft water as well.

Ensure proper ventilation in the bathroom

Your bathroom should be well ventilated to help dry out any moisture that would cause rust formation.

If the bathroom has a ventilation fan, you should keep it running while and after you bathe. If you do not have one, then you might want to invest in it or open your bathroom window for ventilation.

Bathtub rust just too much?

As you can see, there are numerous ways to prevent tub rust and a few ways to get rid of it. However, if you have a severe case of rust and these methods cannot help, you can contact Forrest Anderson to renovate your bathroom and get rid of the rust nuisance once and for all.

Get Rid of Limescale in Phoenix, AZ

In bathrooms and kitchens, we often face the annoying problem of limescale building up. It is such an unpleasant sight. And it makes our beautiful faucets appear as if they were built in the 1800s. So how can you get rid of limescale and restore your faucets to gleaming status?

What is Limescale?

Limescale is a build up of minerals such as calcium and magnesium which are present in tap water. These minerals originate from your home’s plumbing system. And when these minerals deposit around your faucets, they form hard crusty deposits called limescale. Unfortunately, these deposits can prove cumbersome to remove, especially when they build up over a long period of time.

Areas, such as Phoenix, AZ, with hard water (water that contains a lot of dissolved minerals) are more prone to limescale build up.

Soft water equipment can help you get rid of limescale permanently. However, what do you do if it’s already there?

How to get rid of limescale

Follow these steps to restore shine to your faucets.

Clean the area

The first step is to prepare the working area. Wipe off dust, stains, and other types of dirt from the faucet and surrounding areas using detergent or any other household cleaner. This will give you a clear view of the amount of limescale build up and the work ahead of you.

Soak the limescale

The next step is to soak the limescale in a cleaning solution. Do not immediately begin scrubbing at the faucet in an attempt to get rid of limescale. This may damage the finishing of the faucet and other surrounding surfaces.

Instead, follow a more strategic approach. Spray the area with a solution of lemon juice or vinegar. You can use lemon juice from the store, or you can cut some fresh lemons in half and squeeze out the juice into a small bowl.

Wrap the faucet

If trying to gain access to difficult to reach areas, spray a piece of cotton or paper towel and wrap it tightly around the faucet. Allow the limescale to soak in the solution for a minimum of 30 minutes. Afterward, lightly scrub the faucet and surrounding areas. This should get rid of limescale very effectively.

Dip the spout in cleaning solution

Take a cup of vinegar or lemon juice and submerge the spout of the faucet inside it. This will allow for the inner areas of the faucet to soak in the cleaning solution and soften the limescale.

Keep surfaces dry

Once you get rid of limescale, stay on top of limescale build-up by preventing water from accumulating in these areas. When you’re doing using the sink, wipe off excess water from the faucet and the sink as well.

Wipe-off residual water from the bathtub and faucets too. This will prevent the minerals present in the water from accumulating and forming limescale build-ups.

Need a long-lasting solution against limescale?

Let’s face it, keeping up with the constant wiping, cleaning, and scrubbing can be a huge pain.

Which is why Forrest Anderson is here to help.

We provide a long-lasting solution against limescale build up with a soft water system. Our smart plumbing solutions and expert knowledge mean we’re always ready to provide the best solutions for you to get rid of limescale.

Contact us today to learn more about a permanent solution to limescale.

5 Reasons to Buy a New HVAC

Buying a new HVAC can seem like a costly investment to make for your home. It requires a lot of planning and preparation, and installation costs are just another pain after making such a significant purchase. However, there are many short term and long term benefits that buying a new HVAC can have for your home. This article will highlight some of those benefits, and specify 5 reasons as to why you should buy a new HVAC.

1. Energy Savings

New HVAC systems are more energy efficient than old ones. As much as half of the energy used in your home is used for heating and cooling. Investing in an energy efficient HVAC unit can save you tons in energy expenses over time. In fact, newer, energy star certified units can save you as much as 30% in energy costs compared to older units.

We recommend that you replace units 12 years old and older with energy efficient models. When you buy a new HVAC, not only will you be able to save on energy costs, you will also be doing your part to help protect the environment. Using less energy means that you will have a lower carbon footprint.

2. Return on Investment

Installing a new HVAC system ensures that you have a heating/cooling system that will work efficiently for a long time. You don’t have to worry about constant maintenance issues or your unit breaking down at the most inconvenient times.

In addition, investments in new HVAC units often pay themselves back in about 24 months. So you will be saving money in the long run and ensuring you have a system that works well for you.

3. Additional Comfort

New HVAC systems often have improved air flow and can better regulate the temperature across all the rooms in your home. These units have motors with variable speeds which better regulate the movement of air and improve consistency. In addition, they contain advanced air filtering mechanisms which filter impurities and create a better, and healthier, breathing environment for your home.

4. Monitoring Capabilities

When you buy a new HVAC, you can better monitor how it operates within our home. If you are anticipating to spend long hours away from home and there will be no one in the house, you can program your thermostat accordingly so it is not constantly running in an empty house.

In addition, companies are now offering around the clock monitoring of your energy usage in order to help you reduce your utility bills. These advanced monitoring capabilities can help you keep track of your energy usage, cut back where necessary, and make appropriate seasonal adjustments.

5. Increased Resale Value of your Home

When you buy a new HVAC, your home becomes more valuable to future prospective buyers. A big factor that buyers consider when looking for a new home is the state of the HVAC and how much they are likely to spend when operating it.

If you install a new energy efficient unit, you can emphasize the numerous benefits that it poses towards the home and prospective buyers realize the value of the investment.

How we can help

Looking to buy a new HVAC? Forrest Anderson offers energy efficient units with high SEER ratings. Our expertise in the industry, as well as our ability to provide leading products, makes us stand out from the competition. We can help you make the right choice when buying a new HVAC.

[cta_post]

Dying HVAC Signs

Like all equipment, the lifespan of your HVAC will eventually come to an end. It is important to pay close attention to how your HVAC unit is operating in order to notice the signs of it finally giving out. This article will explore common signs of a dying HVAC, and how you can detect these signs early.

Your Unit is old

If your air conditioning unit is over 12 years old, or your furnace is over 18 years old, they are approaching the end of their lifespan. The U.S Department of Energy recommends replacing these units once they get to this stage.

Also, many of the components in your HVAC will begin to wear down about this time, and they may unexpectedly stop working. You should prepare and begin shopping for a new unit once your previous one gets old and starts showing signs it’s dying.

Varying Temperatures within the Home

If you are experiencing different rooms within your home being far cooler/hotter than others, this is a sign of your HVAC unit losing its ability to evenly distribute air around your home.

Your air filters could be getting clogged, and your HVAC’s motor could be losing its efficiency. When your unit begins to be unable to evenly distribute air around the house, it could be in need of a replacement soon.

A Noisy Unit

A noisy unit is often a sign that your HVAC is overworking in order to keep air circulating in your home. Many dying HVAC units normally have a characteristic banging and squealing sound when they are operating. This can point to many different issues with the unit, such as loose parts, a dying compressor, or worn out blades on the fan.

Therefore, a noisy unit is often a sign of multi-component failure, and you should make plans to replace your old unit before it dies completely.

Unit does not turn off

Sometimes it seems as if your unit is on for 24 hours a day without making a difference in the home. This is often a sign of a dying HVAC. If the unit is unable to shut itself off, the motor becomes overworked and dries out earlier than it should. Also, your air system could clog up with dirt that’s blowing in instead and cause inefficiency in air circulation.

When this problem occurs, the rooms in your home will not receive enough cool air, and you will be left to suffer in the heat. One way to notice when the unit is running nonstop is when your home never reaches the temperature you set on the thermostat.

Dry and Dusty Air in your Home

A dying HVAC often loses its ability to filter impurities from the air such as dust, mold and carbon monoxide. The result is your home having dry and dusty air, filled with many contaminants.

Furniture in your home will also get dusty, and you may even experience a dry throat or general discomfort. Stale air in your home is often a sign of a dying HVAC unit, and you should consider replacing it as soon as possible.

How we can help

Paying attention to your HVAC can help you detect signs of it dying in advance. At Forrest Anderson, we can inspect your unit early and warn you of signs that may lead to a dying HVAC so you can avoid any surprises. Our smart solutions and expert knowledge on HVAC equipment mean that we’re always ready to help and provide an honest assessment on what issues your unit is facing.

[cta_post]