Is Your Bathroom Trying to Tell You Something?
Keep Your Eyes and Ears Open for Key Plumbing, Heating and Cooling Signals!
Your bathroom is one of the most versatile and functional rooms in your home. It helps you stay clean, takes care of waste, and can even help you unwind at the end of a long day. With so many different functions, it’s not surprising that your bathroom can become overworked. The good news is that if you pay close attention, your bathroom will often “tell” you exactly what it needs. Here are some common messages your bathroom may be sending you.
“I Need Better Ventilation”: Fogged bathroom mirrors are a sure sign that your bathroom is not well ventilated. Insufficient ventilation doesn’t just make it harder to get ready, but it can cause mold growth and more rapid aging of tile, grout, wood, and other building materials. A bathroom ventilation system that’s working properly should clear the room of steam and excess moisture in about five minutes. If this isn’t happening in your bathroom, you should consider replacing your bathroom fan.
“I Need You to Take it Easy on the Hot Water Heater”: If your shower gets cold or takes forever to heat up, you’re likely overtaxing your water heater. There’s really nothing worse than having your nice, warm shower go stone cold on you just as you’re ready to rinse out your shampoo. Installing a new hot water heater will cost about $1000, and there are now several energy efficient models that can help you cut down on your monthly utility bills.
“I Need More Heat”: Even if your home’s heating system is working properly, you may need a supplemental heat source in the bathroom. Vents and windows allow heat to escape, which can leave you feeling chilled before, during, or after a shower. For less than $100 you can purchase an electric wall heater or small space heater that will make a significant difference. If you’ve been considering a bathroom remodel, talk to your contractor about radiant floor heating—an energy efficient flooring option that can help make your bathroom warmer and more comfortable.
“I Need a Fixture Overhaul”: A water bill that seems to rise steadily month after month is a good indication that your fixtures are aging or leaking. According to the American Water Works Association, installing new, efficient bathroom fixtures and repairing minor leaks can help reduce your daily per capita water consumption by as much as 35 percent. You can find great bathroom fixtures, like showerheads and taps, for as little as $10.
“I Need More Power”: Older bathrooms can be especially short on power outlets. If your bathroom has just one electrical outlet, you should seriously consider an upgrade. So many of the tools we use in the bathroom every day—from toothbrushes to razors to hair dryers—rely on electricity and having to go to another room in the house to use them is simply inconvenient. Just $300 or $400 is enough to hire an electrician to install additional outlets in your bathroom.
Listen closely to what your bathroom is trying to tell you, and you’ll be able to nip plumbing and other issues in the bud before they become major repair jobs…and you can save yourself some beaucoups bucks all year round!