Home Improvement

Bathroom Remodeling and Accessory Upgrades

For many homeowners, a bathroom remodel is only complete with a few upgrades to accessories. But these items add up quickly.

Ask contractors for proof of liability and workers’ compensation insurance before hiring them. It’s important to protect your investment. Contact Bathroom Remodeling Lexington KY today!

Keep the existing layout and plumbing to avoid costly re-piping fees. Also, refinishing sinks and bathtubs is often less expensive than replacement.

A bathroom remodeling project requires a well-thought-out design. This is where our design team comes in to work with you to develop goals for the remodel and plan how that will be achieved. The design stage is also where plumbing changes, if needed, are determined and accounted for. For example, toilets and sinks require a certain amount of space to function properly (toilet bowls should be at least 30″ from the wall, sinks 20″). And any new fixtures must fit within existing pipe locations (or, at the very least, can not conflict with them).

Layout considerations will also be considered. Moving tubs and showers, changing the location of a sink or vanity, and rearranging shelving are common bathroom layout changes that can make your bathroom more functional. We take the time to consider your family’s needs and plans when determining layouts, as the right renovations can help you save time and money in the long run.

Another part of the design process involves choosing materials for your bathroom. This can include tile, counters, cabinets, and more. Choosing the best material for your bathroom can impact your budget and aesthetic in many ways. For example, natural stone is a great option for durability and beauty, while wood components can give your bathroom an organic feel.

Hardware choices for your cabinets and bathroom accessories are also a fun and easy way to customize your space. Whether you prefer gold or silver, chrome or antique brass, there is something to match your style and complement your home’s decor.

Lighting is another essential part of the design process for your bathroom. Recessed and decorative lights can provide a great ambiance and enhance the functionality of your bathroom. We also recommend incorporating dimmer switches for added flexibility.

The last aspect of the design process for your bathroom is considering what finishing touches you want to include. Adding custom elements like cabinetry, artwork, and decorative tiling can make your bathroom unique and personal. We can also incorporate smart technology into your bathroom with hands-free faucets and programmed shower systems that conserve water and energy.

Plumbing upgrades are the most expensive aspect of a bathroom remodel. This is because they involve tearing out walls, relocating fixtures, and installing new pipes. For this reason, it is best to hire a professional plumber to do the work. They have the training and tools to ensure your plumbing is safe, functional, and aesthetically pleasing. A plumber can also evaluate your current plumbing and advise maximizing your space.

A plumber will usually begin by checking the condition of existing pipes and ensuring they are up to code. This is important because if the pipes are not in good condition, they may leak or clog. Older pipes may also be less efficient than new ones, which could lead to high utility bills.

After evaluating the state of your existing plumbing, your contractor will determine where new plumbing lines should be run. This will depend on the design of your new bathroom and any changes you plan to make to the layout. For example, if you are moving the toilet or shower, you must install new water and drain lines. This job is best left to professionals, as it involves removing the floor and relocating water and waste lines.

Once the plumbing is in place, your contractor will install the shower or tub. This is often the largest sub-project within the larger bathroom remodeling project and can take several days or even a week to complete. It can be particularly time-consuming if tile is used, as it must cure in stages.

When the plumbing and flooring are finished, it is time to install the cabinets and vanity. The cabinetry should be made of moisture-resistant materials like wood or solid surface materials like marble or granite. This will help protect the cabinet from water damage and allow you to clean it easily.

The last major sub-project is to install the toilet and fixtures. This can be a relatively quick project, especially if you use a prefabricated toilet and hookups are already in place. Once this is done, the remaining tasks are painting and adding decorations. Because of the high moisture in bathrooms, using durable, low-moisture materials for the flooring and paint is critical. This will help prevent mold and mildew growth.

Homeowners can remodel their bathrooms with a wide range of electrical upgrades, but they must be careful to keep their budgets manageable. This is where it’s important to find a contractor who can help them assess their options and develop a plan for the project. It’s also wise to double-check that the contractor has experience in the kind of work they’re proposing to do and to make sure they’re licensed and insured for electrical and plumbing work.

Some homeowners are startled to learn that their bathroom wiring needs to be updated, which should not necessarily deter remodeling. The latest codes have requirements primarily aimed at new construction, and existing bathrooms are often allowed to add replacement switches and receptacles without going as far as adding additional circuits to bring the entire space up to code.

A common upgrade involves:

  • Changing the bathroom layout, such as moving the toilet or tub/shower.
  • Enlarging the shower or bathtub.
  • Increasing storage space.

This type of project can require a lot of drywall and other demolition, so it’s important to be clear with your contractor from the outset about what changes you want to make.

Smaller upgrades include:

  • Relocating or replacing light fixtures.
  • Removing or installing a skylight.
  • Modifying a window.
  • Adding recessed lighting.
  • Changing the door.

These typically do not require a permit and can be completed without a change to the bathroom footprint.

Other significant upgrades include installing a washer/dryer, a steam shower, or a bidet. Depending on your building’s laundry room rules and whether you have a closet, this might mean knocking down a wall or taking over an adjacent storage closet to create space for the units. It also requires a dedicated water line and 50A electrical circuit, so this project should be left to the professionals.

Depending on the scope of your project, you may need to obtain permits and board approvals from your building management before beginning work. The Sweeten team can assist you with the process by finding vetted contractors, getting estimates, and hiring the right one for your bathroom remodeling job. This can be done in as little as 2-3 weeks, making Sweeten a great option for apartment dwellers who need to get their bathroom remodel started sooner rather than later.

The lighting in your bathroom is an opportunity to add a design element and set a mood. While adding recessed lighting around the mirror is a practical touch, consider other options such as backlighting a vanity or shelving, sconces in a powder room, pendant lights over a tub, or a chandelier in a master bath. Also, don’t forget to consider a dimmer switch for your ambient lighting – it allows you to adjust the light levels depending on the mood or task.

The ventilation of a bathroom is another area that should be addressed during a remodel. A great ventilation fan that properly vents outdoors is essential to reduce moisture, mold, and mildew. Oftentimes, this needs to be done, and the resulting moisture can damage walls, floors, ceilings, and furniture. A qualified professional will help you select the right exhaust fan based on size, noise level, and airflow capacity.

When installing new fixtures, look for those that use LED bulbs, which performed well in our recent lightbulb tests. They last longer than traditional incandescent bulbs and provide bright, even illumination. Consider also a dimmer switch for your ambient and decorative lighting to allow you to set the mood.

A dimmer switch will also make taking leisurely baths or enjoying the view from your window much more enjoyable. A dimmer switch is also an easy way to improve the lighting in a powder room or guest bathroom.

Changing the color of the wall tiles can completely change the feel and look of your bathroom. While this project is simple for many homeowners, it can be not easy without professional expertise. It would be best to work with an experienced contractor who can help you choose the best tile for your space and install it properly.

The last step in completing a bathroom renovation is to trim the room. Adding the final touches will make your bathroom feel complete and ready to use. Whether you add window treatments, decorative storage containers, or pictures on the wall, the final touches will personalize your bathroom and make it feel like home.

Construction Services

What Is Masonry?

Colorado Springs Masonry is a construction method that uses bricks, concrete blocks, stones, and structural clay tile held together with mortar. The mortar used in masonry is not a cement mix; it contains lime, sand, and gypsum in the proper proportions.

The specific materials used in masonry contribute to its strength, energy efficiency, fire resistance, and aesthetics. Contact us today to learn how masonry will factor into your next project!

Masonry is the art of building with stones, bricks, concrete blocks, or similar materials. Construction of buildings, retaining walls, and monuments are all examples of masonry work. While brick is the most common material used in masonry, other materials such as stone, clay, or even poured concrete are also commonly utilized. In addition to its beauty, masonry provides many practical benefits, such as insulation, sound reduction, and fire resistance.

While masonry has been used for thousands of years, the craft continues to evolve. Some of the earliest works were simple: stacked stones with mud or cement to bind them together. Over time, the use of mortar became more sophisticated, and masons began to develop more precise tools and techniques for shaping and cutting stone.

As masonry expanded, it was often used to build religious monuments and other structures. The ancient Egyptians were master masons, creating wonders like the Great Pyramids and the Sphinx. The Romans were also adept masons, constructing the Colosseum, an amphitheater that could seat up to 50,000 spectators.

With the rise of scientific structural analysis in the 16th century and the development of high-tensile strength materials like steel and reinforced concrete in the 19th century, the popularity of masonry as a means of spanning space declined. However, the introduction of Portland cement in the 20th century returned masonry to its pre-Roman role of forming vertical wall enclosures and partitions.

Today, masonry is still an integral part of our society. It is used in office buildings, schools, homes, patios, and fireplaces. Masonry is an art and a science, but it is also a philosophy that promotes freedom and a limited role for government.

Masonry can be built with a variety of materials. Brick, concrete blocks, stone, and wood are all popular choices. Each material has unique advantages, but each provides strength, durability, and an attractive aesthetic to any building.

Brick masonry is less expensive than other options and can be used in various finishes to create an appealing look. Its thick walls provide excellent thermal insulation, which reduces energy costs in the home. Its classic aesthetic is also a favorite among many homeowners, and it is available in various colors to create distinctive styles and designs.

Concrete block masonry is an affordable option that offers the strength of concrete and the flexibility of precast panels, making it a cost-effective alternative to poured walls. It is also durable and resistant to fires, adverse weather conditions, and time.

Mortar is a mix of Portland cement and sand used to bed masonry units, such as brick, concrete block, or stone. Traditional mortar includes lime, which helps it work well with soft bricks, but modern mortars are available without lime and in several formulations to suit different types of masonry units.

Stone is a natural material that adds beauty and timeless elegance to any building. Its longevity and strength have been proven over the centuries, and it is an excellent insulator, keeping homes cooler in summer and warmer in winter. It is also extremely durable and can withstand wind, rain, and earthquakes. When using stone in a masonry project, check the quality of the stones for defects such as cracks, dents, and discoloration. Also, the wooden door and window frames must be free from cracks, shakes, sapwood, and dead knots before they are fixed into the masonry.

Masonry construction offers great flexibility for architects, designers, and engineers. Brick walls, for example, may be load-bearing or non-load-bearing and glazed or unglazed. Concrete blocks, most of which have hollow cores, offer various possibilities in masonry construction, providing great compressive strength (for vertical loads) and much greater tensile and lateral strength to structures when filled with concrete or steel reinforcement (typically called rebar).

To verify the strengths of masonry assemblies, designers can use either a method that tests prisms (either constructed at the job site or taken from existing masonry) to evaluate the compressive strength of individual units or the Unit Strength Method, which uses tables to determine assembly compressive strength based on the strength of the masonry unit and type of mortar. The Unit Strength Method has been the preferred design method for decades because it is a relatively quick and simple way to qualify a masonry assembly’s strength.

The flexural tensile strength of masonry varies depending on the direction of span, bond pattern, and percentage of grouting; the nominal value for unreinforced masonry is set at 250 psi (1720 kPa). In contrast, the code conservatively assumes that stack bond masonry has no flexural tensile strength in the face shell. The masonry shear capacity for grouted or ungrouted walls differs by only half if a rigorous cracked section analysis is performed.

Strength design requires that the deflections of masonry elements designed using this method be based on the cracking behavior of uncracked sections; however, if weld or mechanical splices are incorporated into the component being prepared, they must comply with Section 2108.3 of the International Building Code (IBC). Welded splices must have their ductility developed to at least 1/12 of the nominal yield strength of the reinforcement being spliced.

Masonry is a construction method that uses brick, stone, and concrete blocks to create buildings and structures. This type of construction is durable and offers many aesthetic benefits. It also has a low maintenance cost and is environmentally friendly.

Aesthetics is the branch of philosophy dealing with notions such as the beautiful, the ugly, and the sublime. The term is also used in the fine arts, particularly painting and sculpture, and to a theory of beauty and taste. Aesthetics is sometimes considered a subfield of philosophy or even theology.

Traditionally, philosophical reflection on the concept of the aesthetic has focused on notions such as “graceful,” “elegant,” “exquisite,” and “sublime.” These are often considered pure aesthetic qualities. However, these thoughts have given way to more expansive considerations of a more general sort.

These more expansive and controversial thoughts are characterized by the idea that an object can be regarded as aesthetically pleasing or pleasing in some sense without having any of these pure aesthetic qualities. They may instead be deemed based on intellectual opinions, desires, will, culture, values, subconscious behavior, conscious decision, training, instinct, or sociological institutions.

These more general considerations have led to a wide range of different theories of the aesthetic. One example is New Critical Thinking, popularized by writers such as William K. Wimsatt and Monroe Beardsley in their 1946 essay “The Intentional Fallacy.” New Critical thinkers argued that the author’s intended meaning of a literary work was irrelevant to its evaluation. Instead, they argued that the text was an autonomous entity capable of generating meanings. This theory of the aesthetic is a key part of many modern art movements.

Masonry structures are durable, but that doesn’t mean they are unaffected by environmental wear and tear. Masonry buildings can suffer from water damage and degradation of the mortar that holds them together, so it’s important to schedule regular inspections and maintenance work.

The first step in assessing masonry structures is visually inspecting the brickwork. Look for signs of weathering, such as deteriorated or missing mortar joints and damp walls. Inspect for cracks in a building’s masonry, too, since these are a sign of moisture infiltration that could lead to structural problems.

While a building’s mortar may deteriorate over time, tuckpointing can restore it. During this process, a masonry expert replaces the old mortar with new material, restoring the appearance and strength of the structure’s mortar joints. When tuckpointing on historic buildings, use mortar that matches the original material. For example, if a building was built with soft brick and soft mortar, using hard mortar will cause spalling and breakage.

Other preventative maintenance measures include regularly cleaning a masonry structure with a mild detergent to remove dirt and grime. If a structure has a brick exterior, it is a good idea to install gutters and downspouts to direct the flow of rainwater away from the foundation. Finally, removing overgrown vegetation and ensuring plant growth is at least 20 feet away from the masonry will help reduce the risk of moisture infiltration.

Consider installing control joints in a brick or stone wall to reduce the movement in a building’s masonry walls. These joints can be created by saw-cutting through the head joint of a vertical masonry unit and are spaced at a maximum distance of one mortar joint width from the base of the building.