Bathroom Makeover for Less

On average, a bathroom remodel costs about $9000, but the range can be significant. Here are some ways to update yours without spending too much.

  • imagesChange your sink faucet. Turn off the water supply (valves are typically under the sink). Next, turn on the faucet to relieve any water pressure. Disconnect the supply lines from
    the faucet and the lift rod, and then remove the nuts from under the faucet. Unscrew the slip nut on the P-trap. Put a bucket underneath to catch water. Disconnect the drain flange from the tailpiece. Follow the manufacturer’s directions for the new faucet.
  • Change your tub faucet. Again, turn off the water supply. Open the faucet and drain the water. Unscrew the screws that attach the handles. Pull the handle away from the wall to expose the valve. Unscrew the entire stem from the bathroom pipes. You’ll want to take the whole faucet to the store to pick out a new one.
  • Put in some new hardware—a curved, double-rod shower curtain, towel hooks, or cabinet handles can make a big impact.
  • Add in some storage space to reduce clutter. Look for unused areas on the wall or between things.
  • Paint and/or add crown molding.
  • Change your vanity light fixture.
  • Create a new frame for the mirror.

Remember, if you run into any issues with your plumbing or electricity during the renovation, this will add onto the cost. If, however these are things you’re not comfortable with doing yourself, it’s best to hire a professional from the beginning to avoid further complications once you’re in the middle of a project.

Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24 hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!

Maintaining Your Water Heater

 

water heaterYou do not want your water heater to break down at this time of year — well, any time of year really, but definitely not when you need a hot shower after a cold day! Did you know that water heaters typically last for a decade or more?
If you maintain yours, it can last even longer. So how do you make sure yours is in good condition and when you need a new one?

An easy way to keep you water heater in good working condition and save money every month is to dial the temperature down. (This is also a good safety measure if you have young children that could easy turn the handle on a tub and burn themselves with hot water!) You’ll find a setting dial on your water heater—either a knob on the gas valve or thermostat behind an electric water heater panel. Dial it down to 115 to 120 degrees. This will not only reduce energy used to heat the water, but also protect the tank from overheating.

Test the T&P (temperature and pressure) relief valve. All you have to do is lift up on the lever part way and let it go so it will snap back. You’ll hear the water being released into the drain tube. If it did not do anything, it needs to be replaced.

Every year, conduct a mini flush. Sediment at the bottom of the tank leads to rust and inefficiency. All you have to do is put a bucket under the drain valve near the bottom of the water heater tank and turn the valve counter-clockwise to release a few gallons of water into the bucket. Sometimes you can do a full flush, but that requires more work and shutting down your water heater.

Finally, if your water heater does not heat efficiently and/or constantly needs repair, look for a new one. A new water heater is typically about a thousand dollars, often less.

Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24 hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!

Hot Tubs for Cold Winter Months 

 

During the cold months of winter,images the idea of soaking in a steamy hot tub sounds like a dream. Getting one for your home, though, comes with some expenses and takes preparation. If you’re thinking about splurging on this big-ticket item this holiday season, here is what you should know:

You’ll want to consider where you’d like to put the hot tub and what type you’d like, as some are heavier than others and may require more support than currently exists in that location. Furthermore, the hot tub will need to be at least 10 feet away from overhead power lines and 5 feet from the spa panel.

You will need to install a breaker in your electrical control box. Keep in mind that sometimes warranties are voided if a professional electrician does not install the electrical circuit. Often it also needs to be approved by a building inspector.

Prepare for hot water costs—on average, an electric hot tub uses about 2,500 kWh per year. What does that mean? Well, it’s enough to run more than six refrigerators for about a year. Yikes! So, you’ll want to make sure you have an energy-efficient cover and that it is in good condition. When shopping for a hot tub, look for one that has plenty of insulation and uses an efficient variable speed pump or two-pump system.

Most hot tubs are self-contained, so plumbing won’t be as difficult as the electrical work.

Overall, you’re looking at a project that will cost you several thousand dollars, but in the end, if done correctly, can be a great addition to your home.

Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24-hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!

Warm Up with Heated Floors

 

You’re getting out of your warm bed to go to the bathroom and yikes! You step onto a freezing bathroom floor. Well, that doesn’t have to be the case this winter if you install radiant floor heating. Below are a few options for you to consider:

Electric Radiant Heating

Electric radiant heat uses electrical cables, sometimes attached to a mesh padding, installed over your subfloor. Your choice of flooring is then installed on top of the electric cables. That said, you don’t even have to remove your existing floors if you don’t want to. Instead, you may consider installing the cables underneath your subfloor. To do this, you’d need to access your joist bays through a crawl space or basement.

Radiant heating works best with ceramic tile and vinyl. Electric radiant heat is the less labor-intensive option of the two choices and is less expensive to install. However, it can increase your electric bill slightly. By keeping the heated floor in smaller areas such as bathrooms—while using programmable thermostats—you can keep the cost low.

Hydronic Radiant Heating

With a hydronic system, a boiler is used to heat water, which is contained in water tubing that runs throughout the house, to between 100 to 120 degrees. The tubing can be embedded in a concrete slab or over an existing slab. It can also be fitted into specially designed panels. This type of system can be used with any type of flooring, but you may want to use engineered wood instead of hardwood flooring, which can warm with high humidity. A hydronic system has higher installation costs than electric radiant systems, but can cost less monthly with lower thermostat settings and higher efficiency. Experts often recommend this type of heating for larger areas.

Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24 hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!