Brooks Plumbing Co. Blog: Archive for the ‘Home Improvement’ Category

Should You Include a Garbage Disposal with Your Kitchen Remodeling?

Monday, January 26th, 2015

If you’re remodeling a kitchen on a limited budget, you may look for ways that you can cut corners here and there. There are lots of ways to save money during a kitchen remodel, such as choosing an inexpensive tile, installing an energy efficient dishwasher and refrigerator, or focusing on only one area of the kitchen at a time. But one item that you cannot afford to skip over is the garbage disposal unit.

At Brooks Plumbing, we recommend you work with a contractor throughout your kitchen remodeling project so that you don’t end up missing out on any necessary plumbing equipment. Call us for your next Olympia remodeling project.

Misconceptions about the Need for Garbage Disposals

There are a couple of different misconceptions about garbage disposals that lead some homeowners—and even a few contractors—to believe that garbage disposal installation isn’t always needed. Some people think that a garbage disposal is simply unnecessary since drains seem to clog anyway or because the motor often gets stuck, but this generally happens only when you misuse the disposal.

The second misconception is that you can always install a garbage disposal later on. Attempting to save money now by leaving garbage disposal installation for another time still puts your plumbing system at risk. Even if you put in a temporary drain trap, this won’t necessarily prevent all foods from moving down the drain. Garbage disposals break up food and even some fats and oils so that you won’t end up with a serious drainage issue on your hands.

How to Properly Care for Your Garbage Disposal

If you want to make sure your garbage disposal doesn’t run into problems later on, be sure to use a professional for installation. You should also avoid dumping certain items down the drain, including fibrous foods like celery, F.O.G. (fats, oils, and grease), expandable foods like pasta and rice, and hard foods like meat bones. Run the cold water while using the disposal so that any fat and oil that does manage to move into the sink can break up more easily. Of course, you should throw non-food items in the trash, and you should always try to break large chunks of food up first.

Professional garbage installation helps to protect your plumbing and makes food preparation and cleanup much easier. Call Brooks Plumbing today to work with a plumbing specialist on your Olympia kitchen remodeling.

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Plumbing Items to Consider When Remodeling Your Bathroom

Monday, January 19th, 2015

People choose to remodel a bathroom for many different reasons.

While some homeowners just want a new look and feel to the room, others remodel for practical purposes, making fixtures and storage space more accessible or installing money-saving appliances. Others remodel to take advantage of upgrades that will make their bathtubs or showers seem more relaxing and luxurious. Regardless of your reasons for upgrading, you should remember to work with a trained plumber every time you make major changes to the room.

Bathroom remodeling usually involves some level of plumbing work, and, no matter how small it may seem, it takes a professional to determine the proper placement and sealing of your new fixture and to decide if any pipe reconfigurations must be made. You may decide, for example, to install a new pedestal sink, which involves reposition the pipes so that they are fairly hidden from view. Or, you may choose to switch to a single handle design over a separate hot and cold lever for the sink, another decision which involves some plumbing knowledge for installation.

Low-Flow Toilet Installation

Another plumbing item you might consider is a low-flow toilet. If your toilet is more than a couple decades old, it probably uses more water than it needs to for a single flush. Modern low-flow toilets use only half of the water needed for flushing of older toilets because they rely on a lot of pressure to get the job done instead of high volumes of water. Some toilets also have dual flush options for liquids and solids, and the single flush setting uses even less water per flush. Installing a toilet is a big job, requiring careful sealing and knowledge of valves as well as a bit of strength to pry the old toilet out.

Finally, if you’ve decided on a new bathtub, be sure to have a plumber work with you throughout the process so that you can get the right size and shape for your bathroom remodeling project. A plumber may need to reinforce the floors, reconnect drain pipes, and hook up the new tub to the main water supply, all while checking that the new installation is in compliance with local building codes.

The friendly people at Brooks Plumbing can work with you on your Olympia bathroom remodeling project and help everything to go as smoothly as possible. Give us a call!

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Kitchen Remodeling Options: Upgrading Your Fixtures

Friday, January 16th, 2015

The kitchen is a room in the home that is central to your family life or for entertaining guests. People tend to gather around the kitchen to discuss the day’s events while cooking or cleaning. The kitchen is where you can prepare the healthy meals that will help you to make a major lifestyle change or where you can bake a warm dessert to relax after a long day.

Regardless of how you enjoy your kitchen, you want a space that’s welcoming, stylish, and easy to use. And the fixtures in your kitchen can help make it easier to prepare meals and make guests feel right at home. The following guide includes a few different ways you may decide to upgrade your kitchen fixtures when you decide on kitchen remodeling.

The Sink

A central decision in how your kitchen will be designed involves the look of the kitchen sink. Perhaps you want a double bowl so that you have more room for cleanup. Or maybe you’d prefer a stylish granite single bowl to allow for more counter space. Whatever your choice, make sure you work with a skilled contractor who can decide whether some plumbing fixtures need to be moved around to accommodate this new design. If you’d like more space underneath the sink for storage, for example, you may need a plumber to install some additional piping to move the sink higher up.

Under the Sink

You may also want to think about the fixtures that will go under the sink. It’s easiest to install a garbage disposal during your new sink installation than to schedule it as an afterthought, for example. And it’s also important to think about additional plumbing installations beforehand, like an under-sink water filtration system or even a built-in soap dispenser.

The Dishwasher

Finally, when you decide to upgrade your dishwasher, you should first check with the contractor to make sure that the unit fits in with the plumbing system and is in line with your new kitchen design. A contractor is able to make the proper measurements now so that you don’t end up discovering that your original design scheme isn’t going to work after you’ve already had the unit shipped.

You should always work with a trained contractor when choosing the fixtures that will fit into your new kitchen remodeling in Lacey. Call Brooks Plumbing to talk about your remodeling needs today.


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Reasons to Consider Kitchen Remodeling

Friday, August 15th, 2014

Undertaking a major remodeling project for your home can seem intimidating, and making the choice to remodel a central part of your home, like the kitchen, is one you shouldn’t make lightly.

However, there are some excellent reasons why choosing to have your kitchen remodeled is worthwhile. If you have an excellent contractor to assist you with the remodeling, most of your worries will be taken care of and the job should go smoothly, with reduced disruption to your daily life. If you are thinking of kitchen remodeling, call our experts at Brooks Plumbing today. We can help you plan for the right fixtures and plumbing upgrades to make your remodeling project a complete success.

Some Reasons To Remodel Your Kitchen:

  • Increase its function: If you feel that your kitchen makes you work too hard, then upgrading it can help you change it into a more functional and efficient space. Multi-bowl sinks, additional room, easier access to storage, improved appliances… all of these will make your kitchen much easier to work in.
  • Update the style: Perhaps your kitchen feels like a stale a lifeless space; it simply isn’t an attractive or pleasant place in which to spend time, and the passing years have made it look increasingly out-of-date. A remodel will give your kitchen a much needed face-lift to modernize it and help it reflect your personal sense of style.
  • Entertainment value: Kitchens are often located near the center of a home, and you can make the room a part of the center of social activity. If you are interested in doing more entertaining in your house, expanding and upgrading the kitchen will make the job much easier and enjoyable. The basic layout of many older kitchens can make them restrictive for entertaining purposes, and a remodel will fix this.
  • Raise resale value: If you think that you will eventually put your home on the market, a beautiful and effective kitchen will make the home more attractive to potential buyers. Surveys have shown that a kitchen remodeling job can return 85% of its cost in resale value alone.
  • Safety: Kitchens are the space in the house where the most accidents can occur. If you have a home with young children or people with special assistance needs, it’s wise to have a kitchen designed to lessen the chance of accidents from narrow walkways and countertops at unsafe heights.

Brooks Plumbing is here to assist with the remodeling work you need. We can perform the repiping and drain upgrades to support your new appliances. For any plumbing changes that you need done to accommodate the work on your kitchen remodeling in Olympia, WA, you can place your trust our remodeling specialists. We can match your needs with our full range of service.

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The Many Benefits of a Bathroom Remodeling

Friday, August 8th, 2014

The bathrooms in a home are not the centers of social and family life, but they are central to daily life: the first place you go after your wake up in the morning, the last place you go before heading to bed. Bathrooms are also the spot where you use the most water in your home. A bathroom that is becoming old and outdated can turn into a sore spot in your day and a locations where you waste water and suffer repair problems due to declining plumbing.

Arranging for bathroom remodeling can change all this. Remodeling a bathroom is about more than giving the place a quick face-lift; there are a number of advantages that you may not have thought about. Call Brooks Plumbing today and ask about our bathroom remodeling services (as well as our kitchen remodeling) and we’ll explain what we can do for you to enhance this important room in your home.

Here Are Some Benefits of a Bathroom Remodel

  • Conserve water: For a bathroom remodel, you can choose to have old, wasteful water fixtures replaced with EPA-approved low-flow models. Low-flow faucets and toilets use 30% less water than standard models (and sometimes even less, if you are replacing a very old toilet) without sacrificing performance. Depending on your water use, this can add up to a few hundred dollars in savings from your utility bills each year, and you will help the environment as well.
  • Get rid of poor quality or aging pipes: A remodel is an ideal time to have the old plumbing in your home taken out and replaced with newer material like copper and PEX. If your plumbing has experienced numerous leaks and clogs in the bathroom, it’s probably past time you had the aging plumbing modernized.
  • Increase your home’s value: Any effective remodeling job will increase your home’s resale value because it will be more modern, attractive, and efficient.
  • Brighten the room: Finally, a remodeled bathroom will simply be a more pleasant place. With new a tub and fresh fixtures, a bathroom will change from drab and functional to a cheerful spot. You spend a great deal of time in the room: why not make it brighter and more life-enhancing?

Although some homeowners like to take on home remodeling as a DIY project, you do not want to do this for a bathroom: the plumbing work is simply too important to risk on amateur work that creates leaks. Contact our Olympia, WA bathroom remodeling specialists today, whether you want to get started right away with the project or if you just need more information on how our remodeling works and what it can do for you.

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Types of Sinks to Consider for Your Kitchen Remodel

Friday, May 23rd, 2014

The phrase “everything but the kitchen sink” implies that a kitchen sink is the last thing you include in any comprehensive list… if you even include it at all. But when it comes to remodeling a kitchen, perhaps the phrase should be amended to “everything starting with the kitchen sink.” With the amount of choices available for new sinks, from layout to mounting to materials, you can make the kitchen sink the centerpiece of a redesign. Picking the right sink means a more beautiful kitchen and also one that’s easier in which to cook and clean.

Trust to kitchen remodeling specialists for assistance with new sink selection. You want to make sure that the sink will simplify and enhance your life, and not the reverse. Brooks Plumbing has the experience with kitchen remodeling that will see you have the best work possible.

Kitchen Sink Layouts

One of the first considerations regarding a new sink is its layout. The standard sink has one bowl, but many homeowners opt for multiple bowls and sometimes multiple faucets. Although multiple bowls have many advantages, more is not necessarily better in every case. A single-bowl sink is often ideal for smaller kitchens where you need to free up space. Single bowls are also better choices when it comes to cleaning larger dishes and pans, and they cost less than multi-bowl alternatives.

Many homes today use a double-bowl layout; provided they have sufficient space for the work done in them, these layouts work for the majority of kitchens. There is a great variety of configurations for double-bowl sinks, however, so the right layout will depend on how much you plan to use the two bowls.

Kitchen Sink Materials

The material that makes up a kitchen sink has an enormous effect on durability, how easy the sink is to clean, and the look of a kitchen. There’s an array of choices, some exotic, but the most popular materials are stainless steel, cast iron, fireclay, and composites of rock and resin. Stainless steel sinks are usually the least expensive, fireclay the most damage-resistant, and cast iron the most traditionally appealing to the eye. The different ways that sink material will work with a kitchen is so varied that you need to balance out many factors when it comes to making the best choice.

At Brooks plumbing, we strive for quality in every job we take on. We offer a full range of services for remodels, starting with choosing the right fixtures. When it’s time for kitchen remodeling in Olympia, WA, call us and we’ll deliver the work that you need.

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3 Factors to Consider When Remodeling Your Kitchen

Friday, May 16th, 2014

A kitchen remodel can enhance your home life in significant ways. Kitchens are often at the center of a home, so even if you do not do a large amount of entertaining and cooking, the kitchen will still make up an important part of your life.

When you begin a kitchen remodeling in Olympia, WA, make sure you hire the right experienced plumbers to tackle the work. Brooks Plumbing has served the Olympia area since 1994 with services that include quality kitchen remodeling. Contact us when you are ready to start your kitchen re-design.

Here Are 3 Important Factors To Consider For A Kitchen Remodel:

1. Should You Upgrade Your Piping?

You do not need to extensively replace the plumbing in your kitchen during a remodel: the plumbers can handle adding new fixtures and faucets without replacing the pipes. However, this is an excellent opportunity to upgrade older plumbing, especially if you have plumbing that pre-dates 1970. Replacing the plumbing will also give you more design options for the kitchen and provide the remodelers with more freedom.

2. What New Features Should You Add?

The options you have during a remodel for a kitchen can include adding new appliances that will make your kitchen more efficient. Now, for example, is when you should have a garbage disposal put in if you did not have one previously. You can have low-flow faucets installed to save water, or have under the sink water filtration devices to provide cleaner water. If you have an aging dishwasher, you can consider this upgrade as well. For the sink, you can change from a single-basin model to a multi-basin one that allows you to do more tasks at one time. Consult with remodelers for other ideas that will enhance the redesign.

3. What Sort Of General Design Do You Want?

This is perhaps the most important question to ask yourself. Focus on what you hope to achieve with this new kitchen remodel, and how you want it to look when it’s done. When you talk to your remodeler, this will help guide the direction of the project and establish a budget framework early on. Do you want a more modern design with easier workflow? Are you aiming to make the kitchen a more open and friendly gathering place for your household? Or do you wish to create a retro-design that is less about function and more about enhancing the appearance of your home?

Brooks Plumbing offers a range of services for your kitchen remodeling in Olympia, WA. We are proud of the quality that we bring to every job we do, and we can help you create the kitchen you want.

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Types of Tubs for Your Bathroom Remodel

Wednesday, May 7th, 2014

The most noticeable feature in your bathroom is the bathtub. But how often is a tub worth noticing? Not often. When you decide to have a remodeling done on your bathroom, you should make installing a new tub one of your priorities. No other change will do as much for turning a bathroom into a revitalized space than a modern or retro-stylized tub.

You have a large variety of tub types from which to choose when you have bathroom remodeling in Olympia, WA. They range from tubs with special high-technology features to designs that purposely recall previous centuries. When you work with Brooks Plumbing on your remodel, you’ll have your choice to craft the look and feel you want for your new bathroom.

Here are some of the types of tubs you can select for the remodeling:

  • Recessed tubs: Also known as “alcove” tubs, this fixture contacts the walls on three sides, fitting fully into a niche. These are the most common types of tubs, often seen in modern home construction. They work well as showers and can fit ideally with sliding glass doors. They are affordable and “no frills,” so they will work if you are going for a simple bathroom design.
  • Corner tubs: Similar to recessed tubs, except they attach into a corner with only two sides abutting the walls. Although often smaller than other tubs, they do help save space in a bathroom.
  • Freestanding: This is the “classic” tub style, what people think of when they imagine the bathrooms of yesteryear. But they still work today, especially with the freedom of placement they offer and the simplicity of installation. They also come in a variety of styles that will fit almost any décor. And haven’t you always wanted the elegance of a claw-foot bathtub?
  • Platform: These tubs are dropped into a platform or else sunk straight into the floor, much the way that drop-in sinks work. This makes them perhaps the most versatile of bathtubs when it comes to design, since they will fit in with almost any platform or floor look. However, they require more installation work and planning than other types of bathtubs, and may also cost more.

Your tub selection continues beyond choosing a type. You have variety of materials you can choose to fit your design as well as for function and ease of care. Your professional remodeler can help you navigate the multitude of choices. You will also have options for features such as whirlpool and massage tubs, plus numerous kinds of faucet designs.

Call Brooks Plumbing today to discuss how we can handle your bathroom remodeling in Olympia, WA. Finding the right bathtub to enhance a bathroom is only a part of our comprehensive services for remodeling.

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