Take the Pain out of Floor Tile Cleaning

One of the most off-putting aspects about cleaning floor tile thoroughly is the thought of having to get down on bended knee to scrub and clean in all those nooks and crannies. Housemaid’s knee, housemaid’s aching back – none of us want them.

This is why many of our clients are delighted to learn that we offer the Stand – Up Tile Floor Cleaning System which completely eliminates the need to get down on hands and knees to clean large floor areas effectively. This great system is ideal for dusting, cleaning and drying floor tile such as porcelain, brick, concrete, terrazzo tile and Caesar Stone. In fact there isn’t much that it can’t tackle.

It’s lightweight and innovative and includes a light weight bucket on wheels that holds the cleaning fluid, plus a telescopic pole which extends to 6 feet and swivels through 360. There are a variety of cleaning heads suitable for the grimiest job through to a light cleaning: 4” x 10” swivel cleaning pad holder, two 4” x 10” medium to heavy duty deep cleaning pads, plus two 18” x 5” micro fiber mesh floor pads. After the cleaning pads are used on the floor, the squeegee tool will wring them out so they are ready to use again in another area.

Not only does this system really take the back ache out of floor cleaning but the cleaning pads are made from micro fiber mesh which can be laundered time and time again, saving you money and being non-disposable can only be good for the environment.

The complete Stand-Up Tile Floor Cleaning System is only $93.70 and each component can be purchased separately if desired, making it ideal for long term use – you have the option to purchase the items that you require.

We also supply appropriate cleaning products to use with this system, such as the NeutraSheen Tile Cleanse, which safely cleans floors as well as shower tile, wall tile and kitchen countertops and can be purchased in various volumes.

For really grimy areas, you can combine NeutraSheen Tile Cleanse with our own Grease and Grime Buster which contains a special mix of fine abrasives to deal with those hard to reach dirty and caked up areas of your tile. Watch the discolored tile start to look like new in just a few seconds.

All of the above products, including the Stand-Up Tile Floor Cleaning System and its individual parts can be purchased online through our website by simply setting up your account and popping what you need into your shopping cart.

And then you will be well on your way to sparkling floor tile without a hint of housemaid’s knee.

Remodeling your Kitchen – Where to Begin?

A kitchen renovation project is a major undertaking and has the potential to be expensive. So it makes sense to carefully plan your requirements and set your budget before you make a start. Consider these 4 key areas:

1. Location
Are you going to remodel your kitchen in its existing location or would it make more sense to move it to a larger area? It may be that your family has grown and a bigger kitchen would be of great benefit for your day-to-day living. As a plus, a new roomy kitchen will increase the value of your property significantly.

Of course moving a kitchen to an entirely new location can be costly particularly when you consider the need for all the different trades people required to complete the project. Consider adding a new addition onto your home or the existing kitchen space could be extended by knocking through into an adjoining room.

2. Materials
Kitchen cabinets are a major focal point in any kitchen so if your budget can’t stretch to a completely new set consider re-utilizing the existing cabinets if they are still in good shape. Refacing is where only the doors and drawer fronts are replaced but this can give a whole new look to your kitchen. Countertops are just as important as cabinets to achieve the look that you want. For durability stick to granite which comes in a variety of colors and grades.
Installing the right lights in your new kitchen can make all the difference to its look and you may want to follow the current trend and have pendant lighting over a kitchen island or under-cabinet lighting. Installing new lighting may require re-wiring and if this is outside your budget then simply change your fixtures or add dimmers to existing lights. Another tip to help reduce costs is to investigate the possibility of using salvaged building materials.

3. Budget
By considering the factors in 1) and 2) you can fix your budget remembering that not only will your family benefit from having a great kitchen with improved layout, lighting and usability, but the value of your house will increase.

4. Contractor
When searching for a contractor to undertake your kitchen renovation seek word of mouth recommendations from friends and colleagues. For each contractor, check them out with local construction associations and meet with them to review their portfolio of completed projects and ask for further customer testimonials.

Only choose a contractor when there is sufficient evidence to show they are dependable and trustworthy. They may charge at the top end of the scale but it’s far better to spend a little more to achieve your great dream kitchen in the agreed time frame than to spend less and have a long drawn-out construction project which results in a disappointing kitchen.
By taking into account the tips above, your kitchen remodeling project should go without a hitch to give you a welcoming room which can cater to all your family , and which bumps up the value of your home.

Let’s hear it for Marble

Marble is a very popular natural stone used in art, architecture, and in the home. It is renowned for its beauty and is appreciated by artists who commonly use marble in sculpture. This stunningly beautiful metamorphic rock originally formed from carbonate rocks which were transformed into a crystallized form by high heat and pressure. Each piece of marble is completely unique due to the variations in the striations of quartz, clay, sand, calcite and dolomite crystals which form abstract patterns and which can range from blues and greens, to pinks, grays and creams.

Often marble is overlooked in favor of granite when new floor tiles or kitchen countertops are to be installed in the home, due to the latter’s greater toughness and durability. However marble has its own charm and even if it isn’t quite as tough as granite it is still far more resilient than other options. Marble can be employed in many places: floor and wall tiles, showers, countertops, columns, window sills, sinks and fireplace mantels.

When marble is incorporated into the home, it is guaranteed to give a look of sheer elegance and luxury to any room it appears in. It is sleek, smooth and striking. A marble floor makes a statement as soon as you enter a room, as does an unusual marble sink in a bathroom or a stunning marble fireplace surround.

The advantages of using marble in your home include:

  • Sheer impressive beauty which is guaranteed to be unique as no two pieces of marble are identical
  • High durability when properly cared for using designated marble cleaning and maintenance products, far surpassing many other flooring or countertop options
  • Health benefits because marble can keep your home free from allergens and pathogens
  • Your home’s market value can increase when you have good quality marble installed professionally, making it an excellent investment
  • Marble floor tiles provide a cool floor in the summer months
  • Marble is fire resistant and so adds to the overall safety aspect of your home

However there are a number of limitations which you need to be aware of if you are planning to install marble:

  • If you want to use marble countertops in your kitchen, be prepared to treat them well. Marble can scratch and can be scorched if hot items are placed directly on top of it. The easy preventative solution is to use a cutting board or a trivet to prevent any damage from occurring.
  • Marble may stain from food spills so these must be wiped up immediately.
  • It needs regular resealing with appropriate products to protect it and ensure it retains its beauty
  • It may be slippery when wet so think carefully if you want marble tiles in the bathroom – or alternatively choose a honed marble with a matt finish which is less slippery

Marble is a truly beautiful stone and can be used in many different ways throughout your home resulting in an enviable, sophisticated look. So long as you clean and maintain the marble using specific products there is no reason why the marble won’t outlast the rest of the house! It adds value to your home and can create a sense of self-satisfaction when you see your beautiful rooms. So if you want marble in your home, there really is no reason not to go ahead.

Top Tips for Successful Kitchen Remodeling

If you’re thinking of remodeling your kitchen make sure you consider the following to ensure you upgrade it to the perfect new version:

Overall Design
Don’t get too sidetracked by an over enthusiastic designer. You need to live in your kitchen so make sure the final design is for a functional kitchen as well as a good looking one. The space has to be well laid out and the final design should complement the rest of the house rather than compete with it.

Use High Quality Materials
Don’t skimp and use poor quality materials or your final kitchen will look less than perfect and won’t be long lasting. Choose reputable brands for cabinets and drawers and other fittings and buy the finest you can afford.

Make the Best Use of Space
Large kitchens have an open central area so work it with an all-singing, all-dancing island: incorporate multi-level storage areas, wine racks, deep drawers and shelving units, all pulled together in one consistent and eye-catching design. Consider how people will move around the island and ensure it is positioned in the best possible location.

Cabinets and drawers
Cabinets and drawer units can make or break a great kitchen design. You may find yourself spoiled for choice with different wood types, colors and handle finishes, so choose those that appeal to you. Don’t necessarily follow the latest fad if you think it might not be long lasting. A kitchen remodeling project can be costly and you want a final look that will last for years.

In addition to the cabinets, countertops make a huge impact on the overall look of the kitchen. Marble and granite are tough and are consistently firm favorites which always result in a sophisticated look. There are many varieties and colors to choose from and although granite always inches ahead with regard to robustness, marble can also last the course. Whichever you opt for, use some tender loving care and specific granite or marble cleaning products to result in a long lasting and fabulous look.

Choose what you need, not what is all the rage. You want your life to be enhanced by these time-saving gadgets so do some research and make sure you choose appliances that you require, that you will use and that will fit in to your budget.

Make it your own
Add some great little touches to the final remodeled kitchen to give it that homey feeling and to make it unique to you and your family. Perhaps you have some favorite family snap shots that you could have properly mounted and placed on the wall or an unusual glass fronted cabinet that you can use to display your best china. Depending on the height of your ceilings, you may even be able to use the cabinet tops to display ornaments or other types of food related memorabilia depending on the look you want.

By taking into consideration the points above, you can be sure that your kitchen remodeling project will result in a highly successful outcome – a fabulous looking kitchen that pleases your family and adds value to your home.

Choose the Best Contractor to Remodel your Kitchen

A fresh, modern and roomy kitchen will definitely increase the value of your home as well as look great. If your kitchen is very small or on the jaded side, you may decide to renovate it. But you should choose your kitchen remodeling contractor carefully.

1. Preliminary discussions
You may have a short list of potential contractors, so make sure you speak to all of them personally. You probably have plenty of ideas about how to create your dream kitchen so it is essential that the contractor understands these and can incorporate them into the redesign plans. You need to feel that the contractor is listening to you and won’t go ahead with his own ideas without firstly getting your approval.

It’s extremely helpful if the contractor can provide you with computer aided design plans and digital photos of current and past projects.

Whilst it sounds pretty basic, you need to like and trust the contractor to enable you to work together to make your dream become a reality without angst and conflict.

2. Testimonials
You need to choose the contractor based on his capability, reputation and completed projects. Request customer references which you must follow up with a phone call. A revealing question is whether the customer would use the contractor again. Also find out if the contractor delivered what was promised to the pre-agreed timeline and budget, and whether there were any areas of concern.

3. Quote
Request quotes from at least three contractors so you can check that they are all in the same ball park. Don’t assume that the cheapest quote is the best – only go with the lowest price if the reputation of the contractor is backed up by exceptional references.

4. License
Verify the contractor’s license and registration which can be done easily by searching on the internet. This is important in case there is any faulty work done during the project. Also check if a work permit is required before the contractor starts work in your house.

5. Insurance
The contractor must have liability insurance to protect you and your property from damage during the remodeling project. Call the contractor’s insurance company to ensure everything is in order. The contractor must also prove that he has worker’s compensation insurance to ensure you are not responsible if any worker sustains an injury whilst working on your kitchen.

6. Get it in writing
Estimates should always be in writing. Check them thoroughly before progressing so you are completely clear what your budget will cover. You don’t want to be surprised by hidden costs or by having to pay for ‘extras’ that you had assumed were included in the original estimate.

Similarly ask for the warranty in writing and check what is covered and for what time period.

Following these simple guidelines, you will be sure of hiring the right contractor for the job and can then just sit back and wait for your perfect new kitchen to be completed.