Updating Your Plumbing Fixtures
Do you ever find yourself wishing you could transform your bathroom into a spa-like retreat reminiscent of your last luxury getaway? With upscale bathroom remodels consistently among the top of the list in terms of recoupable costs, many homeowners are doing just that. By combining the latest in plumbing innovations with careful design and execution you too can turn your bathroom into a private sanctuary.
It’s clear sinks are no longer just for washing hands! Today’s bathroom sinks are carefully chosen design elements that can serve to tie the entire room together or provide the perfect, unexpected pop! Whether made from hammered copper, textured glass, cast bronze, or china painted with ornate designs, texture is the key. One great option is Kohler’s line of ornately painted sinks, which uses bright, bold colors and patterns to provide great eye-catching detail. Copper is another increasingly popular option due to its durability and style. Elkay has come out with a line of copper sinks with a finish, size and shape to match every decor. Among their finishes are hammered copper, mirror copper, and satin copper. Glass has also recently gained in popularity, due in large part to its versatility. CBD Glass Studios manufactures several glass styles, ranging from intricate pedestal sinks to a modern wall-mounted model designed to look like a waterfall. They also offer beveled, etched, and colored glass varieties in standard shapes and sizes, as well as in custom-made pieces.
As with other facets of home design and construction, eco-friendly plumbing fixtures have hit the market and are quickly gaining in popularity. When shopping for water-efficient products, such as faucets, toilets and showerheads, consider looking for the WaterSense label. Sponsored by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, WaterSense is a public-private partnership program through which products are independently tested and certified. Only those that reduce water use while meeting the high standards set for performance quality can be labeled as such. Products bearing the WaterSense label are generally 20 percent more water-efficient than similar products in the marketplace. For example, a certified low-flow faucet may use just 1.5 gallons per minute instead of the typical 2.2 gallons, with a barely noticeable difference in water pressure. TOTO, a manufacturer of eco-friendly and sustainable plumbing products, has introduced their Dual-Max flushing system, which offers the option of a 1.6 gallon flush or a 0.9 gallon flush, based upon the needs of the user. This dual flushing system can be found on several of their high-efficiency toilets, many of which bear the WaterSense label.
Previously, chrome and other cool metallic colors were the finishes of choice among homeowners selecting plumbing fixtures. In recent years, however, we’ve seen a shift toward warmer tones. Oil-rubbed bronze, antique brass, brushed nickel, and gold are all examples of the warmer finishes being incorporated into the overall design of bathrooms today.
Many homeowners are choosing to upgrade their homes with spa-like features that were previously reserved for luxury hotels or resorts. Comprehensive shower systems and bidet seats are just a few of the luxuries we’re seeing. Moen’s ioDIGITAL vertical spa boasts 4 body sprays, a 30 inch slide bar showerhead and a 7 inch rainshower showerhead all controlled electronically through an LCD screen that displays the exact temperature of the water at all times. It even has an optional remote control that will operate the shower from up to 30 feet away, eliminating time spent waiting for the water to get hot before jumping in. Bidet seats are another item gaining popularity with homeowners who are interested in personal cleansing systems but don’t have the space for another large bathroom fixture. BBC Innovation’s Bio Bidet line, are seats that attach to your current toilet and offer a variety of hygiene and comfort features, including spray cleaning, heated seats, warm-air drying and more. As you can see, many manufacturers are offering products to increase both the style and function of our bathroom. Choosing products that meet your needs while adding to the overall design of the space, is key to years of continued enjoyment.