How to install a shower head in 5 easy steps

Anytime you mention anything about plumbing – people freak. They believe that installing a shower head will result in that old movie-type cliche where a pipe bursts and water sprays all over the place.

But it just isn’t true. Installing a shower head is a simple, painless process that can be achieved within minutes of removing the fixture from its box. Check out these simple steps below to achieve handiwork glory.

1. What you’ll need

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2. Apply plumber’s tape to the shower arm

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3. Twist shower head clockwise onto shower arm

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4. Tighten with adjustable wrench

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Note: use a hand towel over the shower head to avoid getting scratches on finish

5. Turn water on to check for leaks

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2014 Speakman Bathroom Design Awards

Lights. Camera. Action. On Sunday night, the stars were out in full force for Hollywood’s biggest night. “12 Years A Slave” took home the award for Best Picture. Matthew Mcconaughey won Best Actor for his breathtaking performance in “Dallas Buyers Club.” And for the second year in a row, Jennifer Lawrence fell on live television.

As the award season comes to an end, we’d like to cap off these ceremonies with our own personal winners with the 2014 Speakman Bathroom Design Awards. Here, you won’t feel painfully awkward every time the orchestra cuts off an acceptance speech. No one will trip up the steps when running to receive their award. And we are 100% positive there will be zero wardrobe malfunctions.

These awards simply acknowledge excellence in bathroom design. And hopefully, these creative bathrooms will help inspire your own decision making when planning your upcoming bathroom renovation.

Best Animated/Children’s Bathroom of 2014

The winner is: Arkin Tilt Architects

houzz.com

houzz.com

Children’s bathrooms should be inviting and functional. This beautifully colorful bathroom would entice kids of all ages. And a low wall bathtub is easily accessible without risk of a slip.

Best Romantic Bathroom of 2014

The winner is: Gregory’s Interiors

houzz.com

houzz.com

Run the tub, light some candles, grab the wine and lose yourself with the one you love in this perfectly elegant bathroom by Gregory’s Interiors.

Best Dramatic Bathroom of 2014

The winner is: David Wilkes Builders

houzz.com

houzz.com

You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, and you’ll completely fall in love with the performance put on by this luxurious dramatic bathroom.

Best Feminine Bathroom of 2014

The winner is: Pinto Design & Associates

houzz.com

houzz.com

This brilliantly clean, traditionally styled bathroom is ideal for any modern women. It gets our vote.

Best Masculine Bathroom of 2014

The winner is: Lisa Wolfe Design, Ltd

houzz.com

houzz.com

The new “man cave.” Incredible design. Bravo!

Best Bathroom of 2014

The winner is: Malcolm Davis Architecture

houzz.com

houzz.com

This for us is a no contest. Simple, elegant, and completely extravagant. OBSESSED!

To grab some luxury fixtures to help get you started on your bathroom makeover, make sure you visit Speakman Company here.

And for more inspiration, follow Speakman on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram today!

The Top 5 Reasons Cyber Monday Is WAY Better Than Black Friday

In a few days, stores worldwide will ruin the sanctity of Thanksgiving. Instead of sitting down to some bird and some stuffing, consumers will line up in the cold all because department stores continue to open their doors earlier and earlier each year.

Below, check out the top 5 reasons why Cyber Monday kicks the cranberry sauce out of Black Friday:

1. It makes Mondays better

im-having-the-worst-monday-since-last-mondayMondays suck. The Mondays after Thanksgiving are especially sucky because you were teased with a mini vacation, only to return a few days later expected to resume work activities. Cyber Monday allows you to make the assimilation back to reality smoother by buying things that will make you smile. Yay!

2. Gives us a reason to procrastinate at work

Instead of roaming Buzzfeed for outrageous articles, or scrolling through Facebook for cat memes, shop the day away on Cyber Monday. If your supervisor asks what you’re doing, tell him it’s market research or something.

Actual-Work-to-Do-Office-Thoughts-Meme13. You don’t have to deal with the mayhem

post-31629-black-friday-memes-zKY8Pretty self explanatory.

4. You can shop in your underpants all day

Anytime you can do anything in your underpants, watch movies, cook dinner, eat dinner, etc… chances are it’s a win. Grab that laptop, cell phone or tablet, sprawl out on the couch, and own those Cyber Monday deals like they stole something from you.

cory5. You save as much as you would if you shopped on Black Friday

Statistics show that deals on Cyber Monday are as good, and often better than, Black Friday sales. Plus, with all the above benefits, why on earth would you walk out of your house on Black Friday anyway?

marketingtechblog

marketingtechblog

And in honor of Cyber Monday, Speakman® will be offering our Vintage™ and Retro™ 6 Jet Solid Brass Shower Heads in Polished Chrome. To take part in this incredible, one day only deal, make sure you visit here on Cyber Monday.

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Ten Tips for Renovating a Bathroom from Speakman’s Product Manager

We are very excited at Speakman about our new bathroom collections!  Infact, the bathroom DIY bug is spreading fast within Speakman’s employees.

Speakman’s Product Manager, Amy Scherer, had a substantial hand in bringing the new shower and bath collections to market.   Amy has been a part of the Speakman family for almost 5 years and when she was appointed Product Manager last year, she knew exactly what Speakman customers wanted for faucets, fixtures, and new designs of our legendary hotel showerheads.  She was so happy with them that she decided to completely gut her bathroom and start fresh with new Speakman Fixtures! Take a look at her story… and learn the secrets from one who knows bathrooms best!

My husband and I bought our home in 2010; great structure, solid bones, and in its original 1968 style & décor.  Needless to say when we bought it we knew over the years we would be doing a lot of renovations.   We started with simple things landscaping and painting.  However some new flowers and fresh paint will only take you so far.

Our bathrooms were frightening; pale pink walls, crazy mirrors, tile starting to delaminate from the shower walls and a blue toilets.  After 2+ years finally had to do something about our guest bathroom.  The grout between the tiles was beginning to disintegrate and we started to worry about the potential for mold.  So it was time, now I consider myself pretty handy, but I recognize I have limitations, professionals are professionals for a reason.  Keep in mind we completely gutted this bathroom down to the studs and sub-floor.   Here are my 10 tips & lessons learned for renovating a bathroom:

  1. Have a clear plan & budget – Without these two things you will find yourself questioning your decisions and spending way more than you planned to.  Keep a little bit of extra money in your budget, I can promise you there will be things you did not account for.
  1. Be realistic about your timeline – We set out to complete our renovation in 2 weeks.  At the end of two weeks we had a functional shower & toilet, but no door on the bathroom and no faucet yet installed.  The overall renovation took just over 3 weeks.  Keep in mind that 3 weeks is aggressive for a timeline.  If you can allow yourself 4-6 weeks for a project of this scale.
  1. Purchase as much of your materials before you begin –There is nothing worse than running around trying to get everything you need for the project during the project.  There will always be some things you will need mid-project but try to have your big items already secured and ready, these items include: tile, fixtures, vanities, doors/windows, mirrors.  It makes it much easier to see it all come together and ensure everything works together if you buy things upfront.
  1. Material Selection – Not everyone can afford marble tile and high-tech toilets for their bathroom.  In our case we made sure to spend our money on things that were really important to us and shopped around for other things.  The main tile we used we purchased from a tile store, the accent tile we purchased from a big box retailer.  Had we purchased the accent tile from the tile store we would have paid $20 a square foot, the tile from the big box was $10 a square foot, and we liked the design more.  Fixtures are important as well; you want to be sure you are getting what you pay for and quality fixtures.  Speakman was the clear choice for us not just because I work there, I know the reputation for quality.  There are a multitude of manufacturers who make quality products and many who do not, more importantly you can’t look at a price tag to determine that quality level.  Go online, read reviews, ask your friends/neighbors/family – you want a beautiful fixture that will last a long time, not just look pretty for a while.
  1. Inspect all your materials ahead of time – Make sure you check out all your materials before you install, hang on to any packaging and receipts for the materials in the event you don’t need it so you can return things.  We had bought several items we ended up not using.  In total we were able to return around $100 worth of materials.
  1. Stay Calm – Demolition is my favorite part of renovations and a project that is easy for most homeowners.  With that said, you never know what you will find behind your walls or under your floors.  In our case we had sub-floor that was rotten due to water from the toilet over the years and we had a small amount of mold behind the tile in our shower.  We also found our walls were 2×3 instead of 2×4 and our air vent pretty much had not supplied AC or heat properly to that room ever.  The natural reaction to all of this?  To freak out, DON’T.  Its not productive and anything you run into can be dealt with either be you or a professional.  In the case of things like mold, you need to handle with care or call in a professional to remediate the issue.
  1. Know your Limits – As I said I am pretty handy, but there are two parts of this project that were beyond my skills; Sanding/finishing and tiling.  In a bathroom these are two very important steps and you want them to look the best they can.  So in our case, we hired professionals.  When it came to insulation, plumbing, electrical, painting & decorating, we had that covered, which helped us save money over having a contactor for everything.
  1. Hiring Contractors – Make sure you to your homework, hire the right people for the right job.  Your time, money & home is important, to protect those things make sure the people you hire know what they are doing, don’t hire a tile guy for plumbing and an electrician for finishing.  Check out contractors through the Better Business Bureau and ask your friends if they have hired someone in the past.
  1. Décor – Don’t limit yourself to what is traditionally done.  There are many amazing ideas and things you can do with rooms that you may have never thought of before.  For us it was plants in the bathroom & a heavily frosted glass door.  I love plants so adding them into the décor of the bathroom added a splash of color to the room and something that I enjoy.  We also decided on a frosted glass door instead of a traditional interior door.  You can’t see through it at all, it adds a nice design element and allows light into the hallway.
  1. Take lots and lots of picture – It’s amazing to look back when you get done the project and see all the steps involved.  I took pictures almost every day, and have really enjoyed looking at them compared to the images of the bathroom before especially when we first moved in.  They also allow you to showcase your hard work or evaluate your contractor’s performance.

The best part of the entire project is the end; the outcome will reflect your decisions, efforts and style.  Bathrooms are also one of the biggest equity boosting renovations you can do to your home (Kitchens are huge as well).  My husband and I are completely in love with our new guest bathroom, and cannot wait until we can renovate our master bath (date to be determined).

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