Things to Look for When Buying a Toilet

When we were in the market looking for a new toilet, we were asked a lot of questions about what kind of toilet we wanted.  We weren’t aware that there were so many options out there!  Not only did they ask if what brand we wanted, we were also asked about different colors, specific types, and other styles that were available.  Needless to say, we started to do some research and look for reviews on the internet before we decided on which toilet we wanted to get.  I can’t explain how shocked I was at the different options that were available.  Although I don’t know everything about toilets, I will share what I learned.

You can buy toilets in a number of different colors.  The basic toilet, as everyone knows is a white color and is the same across the board with most brands.  The second most common toilet color is bone or some brands refer to it as “cotton”, but the colors don’t stop there.  Depending on which brand of toilet you purchase, some models have up to around ten different color options to choose from!  Some of the surprising colors were black or even pink.  We weren’t really looking for a toilet in a different color, especially since they cost more money than a white toilet.  I guess it’s good to know for the future if we ever want to buy a fancy toilet like that!

Toilets have specific features, such as water saving models, as well as toilet tanks that come in different sizes and shapes to fit in tight or specialty designed bathrooms.  Some tanks were designed to fit in corners and others are just 10” instead of the standard 12” length.  There are also designer tanks that have what look like crown molding!  Once again, not something that we were looking for or needed, but good to know.

Toilets

The next thing that we had to consider was the style of toilet that we wanted.  The styles that are available are round, elongated, and the ADA type toilet.  The round toilet is the basic toilet that is installed in most residential applications.  The bowl is round, like a circle, and shorter than the other options available.  The elongated and ADA bowls both have an elongated shape.  As the name implies, this type of bowl is longer than the standard round bowl toilet.  Some of the reviews we read said that it is more comfortable type of toilet to sit on.  As can be expected, the elongated type toilet is more expensive than the round bowl toilet.  The ADA toilet is different than the elongated toilet in the fact that it is a few inches higher off the ground.  The height difference also makes a difference in the price.

Since there were different shapes of bowls, it also meant that there were different types of toilet seats and they needed to be purchased to match the shape of the bowl.  Ultimately after all our research and looking at all the different options we decided to go with a round bowl toilet.  To browse some round bowl toilets, click here.

Water Storage Tank

My husband and I have been talking and we recently decided to put in a storage shed in the back for extra food and water. We have a storage room in the basement but it is not large enough to hold food for our family for more than a month or two. We want the extra storage space for extra food by especially water.

With so many natural disasters happening all over the world every year, we want to be prepared to handle something like that best we can. We don’t want to be worried about not having the things that we need to survive. One thing that most people don’t think to store is water. It is a commodity that we use every day and don’t realize how much we rely on it. Not only is water used for cooking and drinking but we use it for bathing and washing dishes and other things. If a natural disaster strikes in my area and we were without water, I always wonder, would we have enough?

This is one reason my husband and I have decided to put in a storage shed big enough to hold one or two large water storage tanks. We thought about building our own storage unit but decided to just by a manufactured one. Once we had the storage shed, we got to work on how we would fill it.

The main purpose for the storage shed was the holding of our large water tanks. We wanted a tank that was able to be mounted on the wall or on a shelf so it is easy accessible and gives more room to the storage shed. There are several different kinds of storage tanks on the market. We went with a Norwesco horizontal storage tank because it is also elliptical and is able to sit on a shelf.

As far as water storage tanks come, there are about three different types; horizontal, vertical and pickup truck water tank. Depending on what you are using the storage tank for, will determine what shape and size of tank you want to buy.

Image

When deciding on a water tank you want to make sure that the tank is both portable and secure (stored in a safe manor). All the tanks that we looked are plastic and come in either black or white. You will also want to know how much space you have and how much stored water you will need.

The water storage tank that we chose is corrosion resistant and light weight with no seams, tears or joints to rust or leak.  You can get this particular tank anywhere from 12 gallons to 15,000 gallons depending upon your needs. We went with 35 gallons. There is a screw on cap at the top of the tank for easy filling. Obviously the larger the tank the more money you will spend but we came across Plumberstock.com and got some amazing deals. We got two water storage tanks for exactly what we were looking for AND a great price. 

Pot Fillers

I love to cook. It is one of my passions. I don’t feel like I am that creative as a person but when it comes to cooking, I feel like I can be/am creative. I spend a lot of time preparing meals (especially now I have kids) and I like to have a nice sit-down dinner every night.

One of my favorite things to cook is pasta. My kids love pasta especially spaghetti. What is it about spaghetti that kids love? I know it is the one meal when all my kids will eat. The thing about cooking spaghetti is the boiling of the pasta. When you have a true pasta pot it NEVER fits in the sink (unless you have one custom made). I hate not being able to get my entire pasta pot in the sink and then when I get it in the faucet doesn’t quite reach… Man it’s annoying.

Anyway, I must have complained a lot about it because guess what I got for Mother’s Day?! A Pot filler faucet! My husband is a practical gift-giver (none of these roses that die in two days or chocolate that just makes you fat…) but when he hears something that I want or would make things easier for me he listens and comes through.  So he got me a pot filler faucet. If you are a little confused about what this is, read on and I will explain a bit.

Image

A pot filler faucet is a specialty faucet that has the ability to fold out to the height needed to fill a large faucet. If you are not building a house and do not have the luxury of designing a sink large enough for a pasta pot and other large pots and buckets, a pot filler faucet can give you the same advantage as a large sink. Most kitchen sinks tend to be smaller than say a utility sink that can fill a nice large pot (my mom actually would go fill our large pots in our utility sink). Although they do have a different look to them, you can find one that doesn’t stick out or become an eyesore to your kitchen.

Pot filler faucets come in all colors and styles. You can find one that fits in with your kitchen décor and because they fold in, most people won’t even notice much of a difference. There are several brands to choose from such as Delta, Danze and Moen. Each brand gives you a variety of options. When you are choosing a faucet make sure it has enough room to fold out .

Of course one of the best things about a pot filler faucet is the filling of pots! Can I just say that in the few weeks of having my new faucet, I have noticed the difference in the easy of my cooking? It is so nice to just pull out my faucet and let my pot fill why I prepare other things. Call me crazy but I swear it has cut down on my cooking time!

Laundry Faucet

There are very few chores around the house that I mind doing.  Washing dishes and cleaning the kitchen don’t bother me. I actually enjoy vacuuming and tiding up the house. But the one chore that I hate to do is laundry. I just hate it. The process is never ending. There is always laundry to do and it is always piling up. I can finish up cleaning all the clothes but by the end of the day there are dirty ones. But, laundry has to be done. Clothes have to be washed and since I have to do it I might as well have things that make it an easier job.

One of those annoying parts of laundry is removing stains. I feel like I sometimes work for hours on one single stain only to have it not come out in the wash. When we decided to get a house I insisted on a good laundry room and space or at least a house that had potential for a good laundry room. We moved into our house and I have been content with the laundry sink. It is deep and located right next to the washer and dryer. This made for easy access to the clothes before and after the wash. However, I just didn’t feel like the faucet was doing a proper job. I decided that something could be done and started searching for a new faucet.

After doing some searching around at the types of faucets out there and then making a list of my out personal needs wants, I decided to go with a Delta laundry faucet.  There are several Delta models but the one I chose (pictured) is a two handle faucet. I really like the two handles in that I can control the hot and cold better. This faucet has a chrome finish which will do fine for the laundry room. The part of this faucet that attracted me most was the extended faucet. This makes it so easy to get a bucket or whatever you need under the faucet, which was one of my complaints about my old faucet.

Image

Not only does it have the extended faucet, but the faucet does turn a 360 degrees. Now I don’t know if I will ever need the full 360 but I really love the fact that it can! The flow rate of the faucet is about fifteen to twenty gallons per minute (this comes in handy when filling up water balloons…. 🙂 The faucet is made with solid brass (no plastic parts) which ensures for quality and reliability. And one extra bonus with this faucet, it has threading at the end of the spout. This allows for a hose to easily be hooked up! Perfect for a laundry facility and also great because our laundry room is right by the garage exit. I wasn’t sure if I would really use this part of the faucet but I surprising have on several occasions. So, if you are like me and do not enjoy laundry duties, check out getting a new laundry faucet!

Bathroom Lighting

I figured while I’m talking about bathrooms, I may as well talk about every part of them! There is so much to consider when creating the “perfect” bathroom. For a man, it may be a sturdy toilet and great reading material…. But for a women, well, let’s face it, we spend a lot more time in the bathroom. I, for one, spend more time than my husband and therefore I am the one making the major decisions about it.

One thing that I am particular about is the lighting. In newer homes, the master bathroom has become something of a luxury, sometimes even more grand than the bedroom. They come with double sinks, jetted tubs, walk-in showers and beautiful windows to allow for maximum light.  However, older homes the bathrooms, even the master bath, are much smaller with a very small window if there is one at all. This complicates the lighting. With little or no natural light, bathrooms can become dark and dingy. But with the proper attention to lighting and placement, you can create a perfectly well-lit bathroom.

There are several things that are on the market for bathroom lighting. What you can do Imagewith your lighting depends upon how your bathroom is wired. Most bathrooms are wired with the lighting above the vanity, with an optional lighting somewhere else in the room. When choosing a light fixture, keep in mind how much extra outside light you are getting from a window. Also, you don’t want your light fixture to over-power the other parts of your bathroom. For example, if you have a small mirror and vanity, a fixture with two lights will do. However, if you have something larger, look for a fixture with three to four lights. Also, keep in mind the finish of the fixtures. It will be right above you sink so get a finish that matches with your faucet.

Another option for bathroom lighting is sconces. I love using a sconce in my bathroom Imagewhen I can. It gives character to the room and also adds a decorative touch. A sconce is best not be used right above the mirror as the light is facing up. If you have a corner in your bathroom or particular dark area, you may want to consider using a sconce to give the space more light. And it will add elegance to the design of the room.

Now, if you are building a new house and putting together a master bathroom or if you are renovating your existing bathroom, check out the option of a shower light! I have always felt it was too dark in my shower and one day I was at a relative’s new home and they had shower lights in the guest bathroom. I can’t tell you how wonderful it was showering with so much light! Most shower lights are somewhat small and almost fit right into the wall. If you are in a home that is not wired for a shower light but would like one, contact your electrician. I hope you find the right light for your bathroom!

Love my pedestal sink!

I am really on this bathroom kick right now.  I just redecorated one of my bathrooms and you heard about the new faucet in another post. I just feel like bathrooms are sometimes a forgotten space in the house; only used for necessity. But I like the bathroom to be part of the house – just as important in maintenance and decoration. I remember when I was younger, before my “grown-up” years, I really knew when a house was complete and the people classy when their bathrooms were beautiful. The bathrooms weren’t just a wasted space; they blended with the rest of the house in color and in style. I decided right then and there that was the kind of house I wanted to create.

So here I am a few years later writing another post on bathrooms. Obsessed? Maybe. But I’m working on that one. I have a bathroom on the main floor that is actually not a bathroom at all but a half-bath, just a toilet and sink. At first, I wasn’t going to update this part of the house because I felt like it was seen the least and used even less. I also didn’t feel like it needed it much. The toilet worked just fine and the sink served its purpose. I could decorate around those, right?

Then one day I was looking around on a home improvement site and I saw a remodeled half bathroom with a pedestal sink. And I fell in love. It wasn’t the first time I had seen a pedestal sink. I actually thought they were quite useless especially in a bathroom that is used for preparing for the day. But I guess it never crossed my mind to use it in a half-bath. How perfect! This was a great way to create a more stylish half-bath especially when the extra counter space is not needed.

I wanted a good product for a good price and I found a beautiful American Standard pedestal sink for an incredible price!  I couldn’t be more happy with my find and I purchased it and installed the sink soon after.

742.prd.s.021

If you are looking to update a bathroom or half-bath consider looking at this brand of sinks. The style gives such a classy look to the bathroom and is made with a high-gloss, stain-resistant Vitreous China. The one I purchased has a EverClean® antimicrobial surface which helps it stay cleaner longer! The faucet ledge comes with a self-area large enough for soap but other styles come with a larger faucet ledge if you need more space for a guest bathroom. The sink can be purchased in a variety of colors including white, linen and bone. I personally chose the bone as it went well with the earth colors I used to decorate.

It has been in our house for almost a year now and I get so many compliments on it. I have been so happy with this purchase and I feel like this is just what my bathroom needed.

 

Bathroom Makeover

While on the topic of bathrooms, I decided to share a few tips on how to spice up your bathroom. I feel like bathrooms are sometimes the hardest space in the house to keep attractive.  I mean really? What do you do in there? Sometimes not the most glamorous of things. But don’t let everyone know that by having a forgotten place with all of your personals out to view!

Image

If you want a more glamorous space, start with putting some color on the wall. Choose a color that coordinates nicely with your flooring and tile. Find a color pallet and stick to it. For example, in one of my bathrooms I have a beautiful pink tile in the shower and a gray tile floor.  I paired this with a gray-green on the wall. Then I used the green, pink and gray colors throughout my decor.

When using accessories, I find that less is more. Just a few items such as a nice vase or collectables placed on a shelf. Display your towels as part of the color scheme, as well as a nice thick mat. Take the clutter off the counter. Store all “personal” items in drawers and closed shelving. That will give you room to add a few details on the counters such as porcelain canisters or a lovely jewelry box. Or you can make your bathroom more personal with a special photo on the counter or a meaningful keepsake.

ImageFor all those “extras” you don’t know what to do with, add a storage shelf above your toilet. Make sure it has closed doors so you aren’t showing the world your “personals”.  Remember to keep the clutter down and the style up! And if you need more ideas check out this site. Good luck!