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blog posts for May 2014

Give Your Bathroom a Seaside Makeover

Bathrooms are no different to any other room in the home—they look fantastic when you first have a new bathroom suite fitted, but as the months and years pass, the décor begins to fade and everything starts too look tired and past its sell by date. Ripping out the entire bathroom is a costly exercise, but don’t despair because there are cheaper ways of giving your bathroom a fresh new look. So if the seaside appeals, here are a few tips on how to give a bathroom a seaside theme.

Paint the Bathroom in Seaside Colours

Use colour to create a seaside theme in an otherwise boring bathroom. Paint the ceiling pale blue and continue the blue colour down the walls about two thirds of the way. Next, using a soft cloth or sponge and some white paint, paint fluffy clouds on the ceiling for a touch of tranquillity. Wood cladding also goes well in a seaside themed bathroom, so use tongue and groove cladding for the lower wall and bath panel. Paint it with diluted white paint.

Distressed Beach Wood

Distressed wood is perfect for a seaside bathroom. Look for storage cabinets and shelves made from distressed or whitewashed wood. Alternatively, buy an old cupboard, sand it down, wash it with diluted paint, and then apply a coating of protective wax.

Use Pretty Sea Shells

Sea shells are perfect for a seaside themed bathroom. Bags of small shells can be bought from shops in coastal resort towns, or you can spend an afternoon collecting your own shells. These can then be used to create an attractive decorative feature around mirror frames or along the edge of your tongue and groove wall cladding. Alternatively, if you can’t find any shells, improvise and stencil some shells on to the wall or buy a few shell design decorative tiles.

Choose a Watery Themed Floor

A new floor will add some pizzazz to an old bathroom, but if you are opting for a seaside theme, it is important to choose the right flooring. Vinyl floor is a good choice for a bathroom as it is relatively inexpensive, waterproof and easy to clean. There are some fantastic designs to choose from, including ones that look as if you have pebbles on the floor, which would be a great choice in a bathroom. You could also sand down the floorboards if they are in good condition and then wax or whitewash them for a distressed look.

Add Some Watery Accessories

Accessories really finish off a bathroom to perfection. For a seaside theme, look for accessories that have fishes, shells or boats as part of the design. An abstract pebble modern art canvas or a fishy shower curtain will look great. And don’t forget extras like a pebble toilet seat, a nautical striped bath mat or a window blind with a sea shell print.

Nautical Shelves

Shelves are always useful in a bathroom, so put up some shelves, paint them blue, and fill them with cute seaside themed ornaments such as miniature boats and fishes. And don’t forget to add designer towel radiators to complete the stunning new look.

How to Cope with a Plumbing Emergency

Plumbing emergencies come in all shapes and sizes, from blocked toilets and leaking radiators to burst pipes and broken taps. However, some problems are more urgent than others. For example, you shouldn’t ignore a blocked toilet or a burst pipe whereas a leaking radiator could be left for a bit longer as long as you placed a container under the leaking section of pipe. So if the worst happens and you end up dealing with a plumbing emergency, what do you need to do?

Burst water

Turn the Water Off Immediately

Hopefully you will know where the stop tap is in the event of a plumbing emergency. In most houses the stop tap is either under the kitchen sink or where the water meter is. However, it could be outside or in a basement if you have one. If you don’t have a clue, it is a seriously good idea to find out well in advance where the stop tap is, or you could end up with a larger than necessary flood should the worst happen and a pipe bursts.

Do Some Damage Limitation

Once water starts spewing everywhere, you need to try and contain the mess as quickly as possible. Grab bowls and place them under the leak to catch as much water as you can. If this isn’t practical for whatever reason, use towels to soak up the water until you are able to disconnect the water supply. If the water is leaking out faster than you can cope with, find someone to empty pots and bowls, or help you scoop water out and into the nearest drain.

Move Furniture and Valuables Out of the Way

Water can wreak havoc as anyone affected by flooding will be all too aware. Water soaks into soft furnishings and carpets very easily, and therefore causes a lot of damage in a short space of time. Water can also damage electrical goods, so it is a good idea to move any vulnerable items well out of the way. If the leak is perilously close to electrical outlets or has already affected electrical equipment, be very careful before you move these items. To be on the safe side, turn off the electricity supply first.

Call the Emergency Plumber

Once you have done some damage limitation, if you are not in a position to fix the problem yourself, you need to contact an emergency plumber. Hopefully you already know a good plumber, but if you are forced to go looking online for someone local, do make sure you are clear about what their call-out fee is before you ask them to come and fix the damage. Don’t forget to check whether you have emergency cover under an insurance policy—some bank current accounts offer this kind of extra as part of their package.

Deal with the Aftermath

De-humidifiers are very useful for drying out damp rooms in the aftermath of a leak. Sodden carpets and furnishings can take a while to dry out, particularly in the winter. A de-humidifier can speed up the process and make the room habitable a lot quicker. And if the damage is extensive, consider claiming on your home insurance policy to replace your old leaky radiator for new ADIGE towel radiators.