Last Updated on November 30, 2011

Everywhere you look there are boilers sale adverts, and with dozens of manufacturers and models advertised it can be hard to choose.  Use this guide to narrow down your list of potential purchases.

What Types of Boiler Are Available?

‘Combi’ boilers are the most common type in the UK, and the name is an abbreviation of the word combination, with them being so named because they are able to supply heat for both your central heating system and your hot water.  They take up a relatively small amount of space, as there is no need for an insulated cylinder to store hot water or a cold water storage tank, and they are very efficient – almost all are ‘A’ rated and many turn well over 90% of the fuel burned into effective heat.  They do have one or two downsides in that the boiler can take a few moments to heat water before it arrives at a tap, and there is a limit to how much water they can heat at one time.  The latter point means that combi boilers in very large houses may not be able to supply the required amounts of hot water, especially if a couple of bathrooms are in use at the same time.

Heat-only boilers, as the name suggests, are only connected to the central heating system and don’t provide hot water for washing.  That is usually provided by a different system, and these designs are now thought to be a bit old, technology wise, though many people still prefer them.  They do take up a lot of space as they require a cold water feeder tank and a hot water storage tank, but on the other hand they are relatively cheap to install and maintain and are still fairly efficient with most being ‘A’ rated.  They are probably best suited to large house which have the storage space needed and which can also justify having a large amount of hot water sat waiting to be used.

Which Brands Are Best?

Everyone has their own opinions about what they like and don’t like, so it’s difficult to truly independent studies that tell you the truth without any bias.  The magazine Which? Produces regular surveys which attempts to assess each brand properly, using a combination of their own testing and surveys of owners, so they are probably the most reliable and consistent source.  In their results, Vaillant and Worcester Bosch are two companies well worth looking at as customers who own them rate them very highly indeed, and have done so for a number of years.  Close on their heels is Potterton, one of the most popular British brands, which has also scored well for reliability.

Before you decide what to go for in any boilers sale, make sure you’ve decided what you want.  Consider which type is right for your home, and do a bit of research into your shortlist so that you know how reliable, efficient and user friendly each one is.  That way, you can be satisfied you’ve bought the right boiler and will feel satisfied for years to come. presents the client with appropriate boilers sale providing them with advice and tips on how to save up on gas and electricity bills by utilising the latest development in boiler installation within home’s heating systems and improve home energy efficiency.

Last Updated on November 29, 2011

It is a well-known fact that we live in a society that poses risks and threats to one’s well-being much more so than our parents and grandparents. Of course, the evolution of technology has made life simpler, but it has also brought on a series of perils and threats unbeknownst to man several decades ago. Consider all the appliances, electronic devices and gadgets you have lying around your home. Not only are they liable to malfunction and cause damage to your home, but their value exposes you to the threat of burglary. To this end, we’ve collected information on some of the most commonly used security options for homes available, which include roller shutters, security grilles, electronic security systems, security cameras and the traditional guard dog. One should definitely analyze all the options available before embarking on such a major home upgrade process.

Roller Shutters

Roller shutters have been in use for ensuring home security for decades now. Unlike other options on the list, they also present the advantage of an added aesthetic function. Simply out, good roller shutters will not only make your home safer, but they’ll also look good, by adding a classic touch to the overall look of your home’s façade. They are not 100% foolproof, in the sense that burglars can find ways to sidestep these lightweight security features. However, on the upside, they will not hinder you or unnecessarily complicate your daily life, as they are easy to open and close on a daily basis and don’t take up space when rolled up.

Security Grilles


Security grilles are not just a good idea for homes – they can also be used for any other type of street-front property, be it a school, a doctor’s office or a store. Good security grilles will be lightweight and easy to close, and they will not take up too much space when closed, allowing natural light and ventilation for the interiors. Modern technologies and the production of ever-new metal alloys have enabled the appearance of grilles which are easy to operate, yet difficult to break or cut, and this is definitely what you want, in terms of security.

Alarm Systems

While considered by many to be the best in terms of home security, alarm systems do have their significant number of pitfalls. For one thing, they are expensive to purchase and install. Their malfunctions are most irritating, and everyone who’s ever been awoken in the dead of the night by the sound of a house alarm gone off know what this refers to. However, there is probably no better feeling in terms of home safety, then to know that, should danger strike, a response team will be at your door in the shortest span of time possible. Costly as they may be, it is definitely advisable to spring for an alarm system if you can afford one.

Security Cameras

Security cameras can work as an option for home safety in and of themselves, and they can also be employed in conjunction with an integrated security system. Depending on your budget, there is a range of options here, too, from which you can choose. More expensive models include infra-red cameras which ‘see’ into the night, and mobile cameras, with a 360 degree range of vision. It’s important to choose a good storage solution for the recorded images, too, as there’s no point in having cameras installed if you can’t check back on past footage to see what went on at a given point in time.

Man’s Best Friend

A guard dog is often the best and most simple solution, albeit it is better suited for those who live in a home with a yard, rather than urban condo dwellers. While it certainly isn’t impossible to keep a Rotweiller in a high-rise apartment building, it is ill-advised, to say the least. There are certain breeds which are traditionally associated with guarding activities. However, as always when considering the purchase of a pet, do a thorough research of the breeder’s credentials. Then, make sure the animal receives appropriate training – leave this to a professional, rather than attempting it yourself. A poorly trained guard dog can prove dangerous for you and your family, not just for unwanted ‘guests.’

Last Updated on January 6, 2020

If you’ve been parking on the street all year because there is no room in the garage, it’s time to start getting organized. The most important elements to think about when organizing your garage are storage and safety. Tools, chemicals, and supplies should all have designated spaces in your garage to avoid accidents and maintain a neat and clean look. Here are a few ideas on how to maximize storage and safety for a more efficient garage.

Building Storage Cabinets

The trick to keeping your garage in good shape is to make sure everything in it has a place. Building storage cabinets will give you the extra space you need to stash your garage supplies.

You first need to determine how large you want your cabinet to be, and how many cabinets you would like to have. Cut ¾” plywood to form the pieces of the cabinet (2 sides, top and bottom, back, shelves). Paint the pieces and let dry completely before assembling. Use wood glue to form the pieces together and then secure them using a nailer. Set the structure on its face to nail the back wood panel in place. Use a measuring tape when installing shelves to ensure that they remain level. Slide in the shelves and secure with nails. To install the doors, cut two equal pieces of wood to create double doors. Sand them down and paint them before attaching hinges. Once you move the cabinet into place, secure it to the wall studs.

Installing Lock-Tile Flooring

Lock-tile flooring is great for the garage. Not only is it durable and resistant to most solvents and chemicals, but it’s quick and easy to install. Lock-tile flooring will stand up to garage projects and keep you safe while doing them because it’s anti-slip.

Before you install the tiles, make sure you leave the tiles in the garage for at least 24 hours. The temperature of the garage should be maintained at 70°F (+/-5°). This is not a project to work on in the middle of summer or the dead of winter. Once the tiles have adjusted, sweep the floor to remove any dust and debris. Start installing the tiles from the center of the room, working outwards to the walls. Use a rubber mallet to ensure a tight fit between the tiles. When you get close to the perimeter, tiles can be cut to size using a utility knife or jigsaw. Be sure to leave ¼ in expansion gap at the walls.

Adding Pegboard Storage

Keeping your garage organized is easy when you have enough storage space. Make use of empty walls by hanging pegboard for additional storage. Pegboard allows you to hang tools or supplies from hooks that slip into the board. Keeping supplies here allows easy access to all of the supplies you need without having to search through boxes, cabinets or shelves.

The first thing you’ll want to do is measure the space where you want to be covered by the board so you know how much you need to purchase. Sometimes you can find boards that are pre-framed, if not taking the time to frame your board will give you a much cleaner looking finish. If you want to paint the board, the frame, or both it’s a good idea to do so before you assemble it. Attach the frame to the board using an air nailer. Find and the studs on the wall using a stud finder and mark the location before you go to hang the board. The board can be attached to the wall using four screws, two on top and two on the bottom.

This article was written by Erie Construction. Follow Erie Construction on Twitter for more updates on home improvement.

Last Updated on November 24, 2011

There’s a huge amount of pleasure to be had from doing it yourself. Indeed psychologists have found that some of the best remedies for depression include exercise and productive work, well, you certainly get that when you get involved in some DIY! I think it probably has something to do with our primate ancestors building themselves a new nest every night, we like to improve our environment to suit ourselves and like to see a job well done by our own hands.

If you’re new to Doing It Yourself the thought of tackling power tools, timber or plumbing can be a little daunting. Indeed, I have heard people actually say that: “it’s not possible to bleed your own radiators, you have to get a professional in to do anything like that.” I think I bled my first radiator when I was about ten and I still don’t have a certificate. Perhaps DIY’s more about common sense.

So, if you’re new to DIY what are the quickest, easiest and most important jobs that you should know how to do to avoid calling out a professional unless it’s actually necessary.

Lets start with bleeding a radiator!

You’ll know when your radiators need bleeding at this time of year as your central heating comes on. You’ll find that the top of your radiator remains cold while the bottom gets to the required heat. At the top of one end of the radiator you’ll find a nipple or nut, with a spanner or pliers turn the nut or nipple gently anti-clockwise. You’ll hear the air hiss out and when the water reaches the top a little will dribble out. When that happens immediately close the nut again. You should perform this operation while the heating is off and with a bowl or bucket under the nut as the water is generally filthy and can stain.

If the bottom of the radiator is cold there is an entirely different problem: Sludge. As the system ages it will gradually become filled with metal oxides from the inside of plumbing and minerals from the water, especially in hard water areas. In these cases a professional may be necessary as cleaning sludge will require either removing the radiator from the wall and sluicing it out or cleaning the entire system with a pressure flush. The first option can be extremely messy if done wrong and moving large heavy objects such as radiators into the bathroom or garden can be dangerous if you’re not used to handling them.
Another job every-one should know how to do is re-hang a shelf or door.

Overloading shelves and swinging on doors can eventually lead to them falling off the wall or sticking in their frames. As soon as a problem starts to appear you should deal with it. And here’s how. If you have a shelf that is coming away from the wall remove everything from it and take the shelf down. Remove the loose Rawlplugs and vacuum the holes to remove any unstable cement or fragments of masonry. Once that’s done fill the holes with good quality filler and leave to dry. Once dry drill out the holes and re-inset new Rawlplugs hammering them in gently. If they’re tight re-drill with the next bit size up, if loose use a larger plug and screw, don’t re-fill and drill out again.


Re-hanging a door is a similar process, after time, particularly in new builds, the top hinges can start to come away from the door frame. To fix this unscrew the hinges from the frame and fill the holes with wood glue. If the damage is so bad that the wood has started to split it could need a joiner to come and re-fit the frame but try fixing it yourself first by filling any gaps with wood filler or a product like No More Nails. Once the filler is dry position the door so that the hinge plate fits into the original rebate and replace the screws. Standing the door on a wedge or even just a box of matches will keep the space at the bottom of the door, meaning that the door will hang properly.

Replacing a broken ceramic tile.
Replacing a broken tile was never going to be an easy job but it’s more a question of making sure you perform every step properly than the overall job being hard. If the tile is on the outside of the tiled area simply use a chisel and hammer to remove the tile and all the grouting that held it down. It’s essential that ALL of the tile and grout are removed and there is no rubbish left where the new tile is going to be placed as even the smallest fleck of rubbish will stop the tile sitting properly meaning it will come loose or break again straight away. If you have to cut the tile make sure you have a good supply so that you can practice getting it wrong.

Take your time re-grouting and make sure it’s even and that you’ve got the right product. The adhesive which stops your kitchen floor tiles might not be the right product for your kitchen tiles and almost definitely not right for your bathroom tiling needs.


Use battens or even matches to ensure that your tile is evenly spaced when you set it in situ and if you notice a mistake fix it immediately, grout and adhesives, like time and tide wait for no-one.

If the broken tile is surrounded by good tiles the job is a little trickier. Personally, and every DIYer will tell you a different trick, I would use a ball peen hammer to GENTLY break the broken tile down into much smaller pieces. Once that’s done use a sharp chisel to go around the edges of the gout to get the tile loose. Again make sure all detritus is gone before applying new adhesive and then carry on as above.

@DanCash is a DIYer of varying degrees of skill, however, any job is much easier with the right tools in your hand. That generally means Draper for brushes, Stanley for knives and screw drivers and Hitachi power tools. There are some real deals out there and now Christmas is approaching, maybe it’s time to scribble out a list that the whole household could benefit from!

Last Updated on January 6, 2020

When it comes to renovating your home, especially for an increase in resale value, your kitchen is the most important. Your kitchen, even with small remodels, can enhance your resale value more than any other room in the home. In fact, homeowners can generally recoup as much as 80 percent of their investment in the kitchen remodel.

Thankfully, there are ways that you can renovate your kitchen effectively in terms of cost (so, in other words, affordably) while creating a big impact on your home’s resale value. You don’t have to literally gut and take apart your entire kitchen and start from scratch to make it worth your while. Think smaller – believe it or not, it works. Below are a few of the cheapest kitchen renovations that have the biggest impact.

  • Refinish or Reface Your Cabinets – There is a difference between refinishing and refacing your kitchen cabinets and the choice will depend on your individual preference. Refinishing your cabinets will require that you do some labor in terms of sanding and then painting or staining; however, it will only cost you a couple hundred bucks to get an entirely fresh new look.Refacing your cabinets means that you would simply remove the cabinet doors only while leaving the boxes – the interior of the cabinets – intact and replace them with an updated style of cabinet door. Expect $1,000 or less with this one depending on whether you DIY or pay a professional.
  • Upgrade Appliances – Wouldn’t you love to get a new look in your kitchen while at the same time increasing your home’s resale value AND lowering your monthly bills? Of course you would! You can do this by upgrading your appliances to energy-efficient appliances, which can be found at reasonable prices.
  • Upgrade Hardware and Accessories – Believe it or not, small changes throughout your kitchen such as new outlet covers, new drawer handles, new cabinet door handles or knobs, etc. can provide a drastically different look for your kitchen while giving your home a big impact. The DIY Network says that you can spend around $200 – depending on the size of your kitchen, how many pieces of hardware you would require and the extent of quality you prefer to purchase – upgrading the hardware in your kitchen.
  • Replace Your Countertops – Depending on the exact size of your kitchen and how much countertop that you need for your kitchen, you can spend around $1,000 give or take a few bucks to get brand new and fancy granite countertops.
  • Brighten the Room up with a New Coat of Paint – Do you want to keep the color of your kitchen and simply put a fresh coat of paint on top of the existing coat? Would you prefer to go all-out, establish a new color for your kitchen, and spruce up the room with a brand new color of paint? Or maybe do a little bit of both? Whatever the choice may be, choosing to paint your kitchen is a very inexpensive, cost-effective way to remodel your kitchen for a new look while getting a huge impact in every form. Plus, when you consider that you can paint your entire kitchen for under $100 (depending on the size of your kitchen and how many extras you want to throw in such as tape, brushes, primer, etc.), why wouldn’t you want to do it?
Nancy is a freelance writer for a website on Oakland homes. She knows home renovations like the back of her hand and is she is an expert in the field!

Last Updated on November 23, 2011

The creation of a commercial or corporate kitchen requires much more planning and care than the creation of a residential kitchen. Not only should the design of a corporate kitchen be very efficient and easy to clean and sterilize at the end of every day, but it should also be fully functional and able to handle many staff and the production of lots of food each day. Here are some of the essentials you will need to address when it comes to building a corporate kitchen: Efficient Layout: In a commercial or corporate kitchen, there will be a heavy workflow and many staff working to complete the baking, cooking or preparation at any given time. In order to create a labour efficient layout, you should have workstations that allow people to work in one area at a time, rather than running from one end of the kitchen to the other. This means placing the fridges next to the preparation counters, which should in turn be close to the heat sources. An efficient layout can save both time and money overall. Meeting Health Department Codes: Perhaps the most important thing to consider when building a corporate kitchen is whether or not your space meets the sanitation and health codes set by your local health department. No matter how efficient or attractive your kitchen, without meeting the basic health guidelines it will not be functional. Before you decide on an official plan on begin building, make sure you understand the local health codes and can abide by each one. It is much simpler to fix the problem before any building begins. Ventilation: This is a major part of planning a large-scale kitchen, but one that many people forget. Consider where the air from your major ovens will go, and keep that in mind as you place the larger appliances around the kitchen. Your ovens and stovetops should be against an exterior wall whenever possible to allow for airflow out of the room, and to avoid any extra duct work. Major Appliances: Of course, when you think of a kitchen on any scale the appliances might be what first come to mind. Ovens, stovetops, dishwashers, freezers and refrigerators will be among the required appliances in your commercial kitchen. Do your best to estimate the potential size and output each day to determine how many of these expensive items you will need. Having too few ovens can be a disaster, but so can having too many that go unused. Storage Space: Be sure that no matter what size your kitchen, you include plenty of storage space. Commercial kitchens save money by purchasing many ingredients, especially shelf stable ones, in bulk. This does result in needing to store them for months at a time, so be sure to include space to do so within the kitchen. By including the aspects of ventilation, storage space, health department codes, major appliances and an efficient layout in your design plan, you can build an attractive and still practical corporate kitchen. Sarah writes on behalf of Fluid Branding a promotional products specialist. Fluid Branding have thousands of promotional product from promotional mugs to calculators, from promotional pens to umbrellas. Fluid Branding has something for everyone.

Last Updated on November 22, 2011

This guest blog post was written by Tracy Tesmer, founder of Tracy Tesmer Design • Build • Remodel • Repair, a Gainesville, GA kitchen remodeling company specializing in kitchen renovations. Tracy has over 30 years’ experience in the construction industry and hosts a weekly home improvement radio show on WDUN in North Georgia.

The hardest part is getting started – at least that may be the case when beginning a kitchen re-design project. However, when following these helpful and simple pointers, even the initial phases of such a project can be stress-free and will come together nicely.

Narrow it down

The pre-planning and planning phase of any remodeling project is the most important. Not only will you get all your ideas into one uniform plan or design, you’ll also save time and money in the long haul. So, on paper, write down your favorite ideas for your project – color scheme, types of fixtures and cabinets, appliances, etc. If you’re short on ideas, consult a remodeling expert or page through some home renovation books. Take a few weeks to get a good feel for all your ideas; then narrow down your list so it includes your favorites.

Goals and budget

Will the ideas and items on your short list help achieve the overall goal you have in mind for your revamped kitchen? If not, add, delete or change the list to fit your vision of your future kitchen. This is a time to remember how much space you have to work with. It’s easy to overestimate the amount of room you have. Don’t get caught in this trap; take precise measurements so you know exactly the area you’re working with. This also is where you should begin to seriously think about your budget. Are the items on your short list affordable to meet your budget? If they are not, are the items available in an off brand or more affordable model? They probably are but, if they happen not to be, you may have to break items down into essential and non-essential items in order to spare pain to your pocketbook.

Work schedule

Just as important as a money budget is a time budget. Be realistic – a full-scale kitchen re-design cannot be finished in a day. Make a realistic timeline of when the re-design project should begin and be completed. Fill in more detailed information between the start and end dates. For example, at what point on the timeline will countertops be installed? Or, if you choose to include an island in your new kitchen, when does it appear on the timeline? This timeline will be helpful when discussing your project with those remodelers and experts who will help re-design and bring your kitchen project to fruition.

Last Updated on November 22, 2011

Making your home energy efficient is one of the best things that you can do for the environment as well as your wallet. One of the first steps in making your home energy efficient is sealing any holes or cracks. This is a huge part of creating an energy efficient dwelling since there are so many places where warm air can escape and cold air can get in.

It’s also the basis for making your other energy saving attempts work their best. You need to look for cracks and other openings both inside and outside your home.

Leave no space unattended, this means the spaces around the doors and windows as well as the floors and ceilings. Properly sealing your home can save up to 10 percent on you total annual energy bill. And, who wouldn’t want to save that much?

Start by looking or feeling around the house for leaks. Anywhere that is noticeably colder or where you can feel a draft needs to be sealed. Caulking, sealing with sprayfoam and using weather stripping are a few simple and inexpensive ways to stop drafts.

After you’ve finished sealing any leaks, you need to make sure that your home is well insulated. A well insulated home stays cool and comfortable in the summer and warm and cozy in the winter. Different R-values which indicate insulation’s ability to resist heat flow are recommended for different areas of the home.

For example, it’s usually recommended that R-38 is used in the attic. This means that the insulation is around 12-15 inches thick. The attic is also the easiest place to start since you won’t have to tear anything up. Just lying insulation in the floor rafters is sufficient. The attic is also the place where the most energy is wasted and where you’ll cut down on your energy bill the most.

Another great way to make you home more energy efficient is to seal your ducts properly. Ducts are installed in homes with forced air heating and up to 20 percent of air moving through the ducts can be lost due to badly sealed connections.

Heating and cooling effectively is another way to make your home more energy efficient. Half of the energy used in your home may go toward heating and cooling, so this is definitely something to pay attention to.
A simple way to cut down on costs and make your home more efficient is to keep up on air filter maintenance.

Changing an air filter each time it gets dirty will save a lot of energy because the effectiveness of your home’s system is impeded by old filters.
Maintaining a clean filter will allow your system to function properly and will extend its life.

Another step you can take to save energy and money is to install a programmable thermostat. Using it according to the instructions can save you up to $180 every year. Follow these simple steps and you’ll end up saving a good deal of energy as well as money.

About the Author: E. Fortie writes for the solar blog. It’s a free blog he uses to share info about solar leasing and other ways to cut energy prices.

Last Updated on November 22, 2011

Noise from neighbors, street traffic, kids and pets can keep you up at night. If you’ve considered soundproofing but don’t want to start constructing walls or sacrificing style for a sound night’s sleep, check out these chic alternatives for reducing noise in your home.

Without major construction, there are a several ways to soundproof your home. The first thing you’ll need to figure out is where the majority of the noise is coming from. Once you pinpoint the source it will be easy to choose the right noise reducing methods for the area.

Building Barriers

If you find that the majority of the noise is coming from other rooms of the house via shared walls or from outside traffic, building a barrier could be a good solution. However there is no need to start putting up drywall. Floor to ceiling bookshelves or a media rack will minimize sounds when places against the offending shared wall. Not only does this look nice and minimize noise, but it gives you a lot of extra storage.

If you have ample storage already, or don’t want to add bulk MIO Acoustic Weave tiles and Träullit Hexagons are very effective sound reducers. The MIO tiles are eco-friendly and can be painted to match any décor. They give the wall a lot of texture and character and are relatively inexpensive.  The other tile alternative, while still green, is slightly more Swedish. Träullit Hexagons are made from woodwool cement board and look more like art than sound-proofing.

For a less permanent, more customizable approach, try wrapping a few big plywood panels in fiberfill and faux upholstering them with a beautiful, lux fabric to match your interior.

Another way to reduce noise in your room is by spraying texture onto your ceiling.  Roughening the surface will help absorb sound waves rather than bounce them around the room. The spray texture is easy to apply and the result is sometimes referred to as popcorn ceiling.

Street Sounds

If street sounds keep you awake at night, it is most likely a result of thin windows. If you’re willing to shell out the extra cash to upgrade to triple pane windows it will make a difference in the room noise-wise. Triple pane windows have three layers of glass cushioned by layers of inert gasses that contribute to overall sound-dampening. However, if new windows are not in your future there is another way to sound proof your old ones. Your window treatments can work to reduce noise in the room. Select heavy fabrics instead of sheers or lightweight cotton. Consider lux fabrics like velvet. If noise is a problem opt for these curtains instead of light sheers or window blinds.

Softer Things, Softer Sounds

Soft, heavy materials are great when it comes to absorbing sound. Think about a big empty room, sounds echo much more readily in an empty room than a full one. The more materials and textures you have in the room, the harder it is for sound to travel.  Simple additions to your décor like throws, wraps and throw pillows will make all the difference. For noise that comes from above or below, consider adding high-pile rugs with thick pads to muffle sounds escaping from other rooms.

So don’t sacrifice style or start tearing apart your home with construction just to muffle some unwanted noise. Instead, try these easy style-friendly noise reducing tricks.

This article was written by Erie Construction. Follow Erie Construction on Twitter for more information about home improvement.

Last Updated on March 29, 2022

So you’ve finally come around to remodeling your kitchen. You’ve picked out your designs, calculated your estimates and overcome that vague sense of dread that comes with the prospect of destroying a part of your home in order to make it better. Now it’s time to roll up your sleeves and start the dirty work.

If you’ve decided to feature granite countertops in your remodel, – and why wouldn’t you? – but have never installed a granite countertop before, refer to this quick guide with steps to prepare your kitchen for your new counter installation. Without the right tools, installing a granite countertop can be a frustrating process. But a little artifice, perseverance and plain old elbow grease (which is hard to find in stores but can be ordered by some online retailers) will guide you through the task and towards new kitchen nirvana.

For the purposes of this guide, I’m going to assume that you have already selected, purchased, measured and cut your granite. That way we can get right into the actual installation of your granite countertop. Let’s go!

Step One – Shut off plumbing and remove any fixtures (sink, etc.)

Before you start tearing away parts of your kitchen, make sure you’ve shut off the water in the house. Then, begin disconnecting the plumbing underneath the sink so that when you remove the sink and any other fixtures, they don’t bring any pipes with them. You can loosen a sink by using a crowbar or ply bar to break through any caulk before lifting the sink right out of the counter.

Step Two – Raze the Countertops!

This may be the most difficult/cathartic part of the process. Most countertops are glued to their wooden foundations and in order to pry them off, you’ll need some tools. The wide putty knife can be used to effectively wedge down behind the portion of the counter that rests against the wall. Once you have some leverage, you can hammer a pry bar into the space and pull that piece of the counter off, without damaging the walls.

The actual counter will be a bit more difficult. Most laminate countertops are affixed with screws and glue, so you’ll have to hunt down those screws, and that could mean spending some time under the sink and in the cabinets. In my experience, it’s best to use some power tools here; these screws can be pretty stubborn, and a simple screwdriver might drive you to the depths of insanity. Once you’ve removed the screws, use the same technique to break the glue as explained above.

Step Three – Shut Off Power and Remove Appliances

The final step to prepare your kitchen for installing a granite countertop is shutting off electricity and gas to the appliances and pulling them out to make way. If you have a gas range stove, make sure it’s off and simply pull it out from the wall (Tip: lay a blanket down and transfer the stove to it, so you don’t scratch your kitchen floor up). If you have a dishwasher, you’ll need to remove it to get at screws that are likely keeping the countertops attached. Dismantle those screws and remove any remaining traces of the old countertops. Things are about to get interesting.

Step Four – Install the Granite!

The moment we’ve all been waiting for… is here! Unless you have a means to pick up and transport the granite yourself, it will likely be delivered by a team of people who are capable of installing the stone. Granite tops, when cut and ready to install, can weigh into the hundreds depending on the extent of remodeling you plan on. If you are doing this all by yourself, at least have some friends help you bring the granite into your home.

If you haven’t cut the sinkhole out yet, you’ll have to do that with dry-fitted granite and a jigsaw. Every sink is different; some need to go in before the granite is laid on top, and vice versa.

Once everything is fitted and ready to go, begin applying half-dollar dollops of glue on the plywood, which will serve as the new foundation for the granite.

At this point you’ll want to caulk the seams so everything holds together. Begin this by placing masking tape on either side of the seams you will be caulking. To fill in the seams between the granite pieces, mix some polyester-based resin with some color in order to match the paste with the stone. Mix in some hardener, and then you’ll have about five minutes to apply the mixture to the seams before it hardens completely. Remove the masking tape so the mix doesn’t dry onto it.

Let everything dry for about 30 minutes and then smooth the seams out with a seam stone.

Et Voila! A new kitchen! Of course, there are more than four steps to prepare your kitchen to install a granite countertop, and you’re likely to run into one or more problems in the process. Since every project is different, I can’t troubleshoot for you, unfortunately, but follow these basic guidelines and refer to any user experiences on this or another site in order to get one step closer to beautifying your kitchen and losing those lame countertops you’ve had since college.

Thomas Stone is a home improvement blogger for Sears and other prestigious brands. In his free time he enjoys DIY home improvement projects.

Last Updated on November 21, 2011

Your bedroom is that one place in the world where you can relax and unwind after a tiring day. Different people have different requirements when it comes to designing their bedrooms. Some people may want to have a soft and cozy appearance, while others like a combination bright and solid colors to make the ambiance more fun-filled. Whatever your choice is, you can add your own imagination and some of our bedroom decorating ideas to make that special place in your house look like your own paradise.

First of all, you need to decide how you would like your room to be. Do you want it to be airy and spacious, or something cozy and warm? If you are creative, you can make your bedroom look like a romantic getaway. An important thing to consider is the person who will be using the room. If you are planning to decorate your kids’ bedroom then you may want to use colors they love. Girls’ rooms mostly include a lot of pink, while the boys’ rooms have more blue shades.

Get the right paint on the walls: This is perhaps the one of the most effective and inexpensive bedroom decorating ideas. Colors can add a lot of difference in the ambience of the room. It depends on you whether you would like to have some earthly tones on the wall or make use of some solid colors to create a more dramatic effect. You can take ideas from the Internet to see which color would suit your walls perfectly.

If you want a dreamy and romantic appeal then consider white shades to create that effect. Those who want more positive energy inside the house may opt for solid orange shades. Remember that the paint you choose for your walls may make your room look bright or dark. You must also consider the space available inside the room before choosing a color. Dark shades may make it look crowded while bright hues can make the area look spacious. For the kids’ room, you can use a lot of bright colors to add more liveliness and fun.

Choosing a theme for bedrooms:

Themes are an important part of the bedroom decorating ideas. You can make use of interesting themes to transform your personal space into a romantic getaway on the beach. Kids simply love these exciting themes. You can design your little guy’s room to resemble a pirate’s ship in deep blue ocean or a motor car in race. Little girls’ rooms can have the mermaid theme or Barbie doll theme.

Buy the right furniture that complements the room:

The right bedroom furniture plays an important role in determining the success of your bedroom decorating ideas. Some of the essential furniture items you would need are a bed, wardrobe, mirror, side table for lamps, etc. You can consider buying bedroom sets to ensure that the interiors look more organized. If you live in small sized rooms then you may consider buying furniture that come with a lot of storage space to cut out the clutter from your home. Also, you must carefully choose the colors. The light colored furniture will add more space and liveliness to your room. On the other hand, dark colored furniture can make the room look more crowded.

If you want a stylish and modern appearance, then consider choosing the contemporary furniture items. This will add fashion and functionality to your personal space. On the other hand, if you prefer creating a traditional ambiance then you may opt for the antique styled furniture items. You can add a canopy to your bed for a more dramatic appeal.

Add more life with inexpensive decorating items:

Bedroom decorating ideas don’t necessarily need to break your bank. Most people postpone any plans of decorating or renovating the interiors thinking that this would involve a lot of money. Well, the truth is that you can actually spend less and yet add a lot of style and value to your home with inexpensive decorative items. For example, consider buying lamp shades complementing the color of your walls. This will not only create an amazing light effect but also add more life to your interiors.

You may also consider buying nice photo frames to put on the walls. However, try not to overdo this as this may make the room look too over-crowded. You can frame some special photos and see the amazing difference it creates. You can let your imagination run wild and come up with interesting bedroom decorating ideas to transform your personal space into paradise!

Give your home a whole new and exciting look with the bedroom decorating ideas. You can buy the decorating items online from the major stores selling home products.

This is a guest post by Nadav Snir from

Check out more bedroom decorating ideas like wall stickers at

Last Updated on December 30, 2019

Even if you spend an entire day researching all of the different countertop options for your kitchen, you probably wouldn’t be able to even scratch the surface. Let’s examine two of the most popular and hardworking countertops that your money can buy.

The best countertops for you are the ones that are going to compliment the way that you work in the kitchen as well as fit into your budget.

One of the most popular countertop options are granite countertops. The look of granite is timeless. They’ll never go out of style and they are a perfect fit for busy kitchens.

If you love to cook and bake then you’ll really appreciate the functionality of granite. Bakers appreciate them because they can work their dough right on the surface of the counter without having to put down any parchment paper.

You’ll be able to knead your dough right on the surface, use a rolling pin to flatten it out, and cut out shamrock shaped cookies for Saint Patrick’s Day without having to put anything on the countertop other than some flour to keep the dough from sticking.

If you like to cook, you’re in luck too. Granite can take the heat from your hot pots and pans without you having to use a trivet or search around for an extra pot holder. You’ll be able to take a hot casserole dish right out of the oven and put it on top of your countertop. The first time you do this you’ll probably be nervous about damaging the countertop. I know I was. But I was absolutely amazed when I moved that hot cookware to the sink an hour later. The surface of the countertop looked exactly the same as it did before I put the dish on it.

A popular alternative to granite countertops are quartz countertops. They offer you all of the same benefits that granite countertops do, with one major exception. You never have to seal a quartz countertop. It’s the biggest difference when you compare quartz vs granite.

Depending on the granite countertop that you choose you will have to seal it every 12 to 18 months. This is because granite is a natural stone and natural stones are porous. By sealing the countertop you fill up those pores, and prevent stains from settling in.

With quartz countertops you can completely avoid this annual maintenance. That’s because of the way that they are manufactured. They are made by combining crushed quartz and a resin. When the resin cures it has none of the pores that have proven to be occasionally problematic with granite countertops.

The only other difference between granite and quartz countertops is their appearance. Both are beautiful in their own right. They both have a beautiful luster that shines when polished. Quartz countertops however, are available in solid colors. Granite countertops are veined with different, but complimentary, colors worked through the stone. Look at all of our quartz countertop and granite countertop options.

There are lots of websites about quartz countertops. But if you enjoyed this article in particular, you can find more articles by the same author over at