Starting a remodeling project? Statistics show that kitchens and bathrooms are not only the top rooms to have remodeled in your home, they are also at the top of the list of adding to your home’s overall resale value.
Nothing can be more exciting than starting the process. As you pour over home improvement magazines and websites showcasing the latest trends, you can quickly pick out the things you would love to have, and things that aren’t quite as important. The double oven … yes. The eight burner stove … maybe not.
But as you start down the remodeling road, chances are you’ve focused your attention on the aesthetics of your project rather than the functionality. And with good reason. If you aren’t a contractor as your day job, you probably have never thought about how things work and what keeps them working day after day.
Usually home improvement projects have some degree of plumbing work involved. It may be as simple as replacing a faucet or adding a new toilet, or more complicated such as adding a double sink to the master bath, or a pot filler faucet near the stove. With the amount of resources available to today’s consumers, many are determined to do at least some of the work themselves. HGTV makes it look so easy; why not?
This is where problems can occur very quickly.
Plumbing is one of the most important – and most dangerous – systems in your home to work with, especially if you have little experience in doing so. Here are a couple of scenarios we’ve encountered over the years.
- One couple completely gutted and remodeled their master bath, adding a walk in shower and moving the double sink vanity over a few inches. While they put their all into securing the plumbing, they missed a tiny leak, and sealed it in behind the shower tile. The leak was small – just a drip or two every day. But water doesn’t take long before it escalates into big problems. In a matter of months, they noticed their shower walls were “soft”. When they removed a few tiles to find the problem, they quickly discovered black mold; and had to have an entire remediation team fix the problem.
- One homeowner remodeled their 1960s kitchen with DIY techniques. They didn’t change the floor plan; instead just added upgraded cabinets, appliances and countertops. The look added value and made a huge impact on the overall look and feel of the home. But what the homeowner didn’t realize is the old piping was weak, filled with corrosion, and should have been replaced during the upgrade to avoid leaks that were inevitable in a short period of time.
Even with the simplest of remodeling projects, even if you choose to do much of the work yourself, it pays to have an experienced plumber inspect your plumbing system, and make changes as necessary. Water damage can cause disasters. Its better to be safe and know your remodel will last for years.