25 February 2021

When choosing between natural stone and quartz composites, Vadara makes that choice a breeze

I have natural stone floors and counters in my kitchen and yes, they’re beautiful. But man oh man are they a chore to keep looking clean. My travertine floors somehow manage to hide dirt and be dirty at the same time and so we sweep them every day and mop them two or three times a week. As a bonus, last year we paid several thousand dollars to have them “refreshed.” That involved having all of the accumulated divots and cracks filled then then the whole floor was sanded and sealed.

My stone counters can’t just be wiped off when something spills. No, they have to be washed and then dried lest a dingy film develop that in turn attracts more dirt to itself. So every couple of days I wash them with soapy water, rinse them and then buff them dry.

When we settled on this house, it had a kitchen in it already that the previous owners had renovated at huge expense and it had all of the mandatories expected in a larger home in a leafy suburban neighborhood. It had a Sub-Zero, grasscloth wallpaper, oak floors, a marble fireplace and most importantly, natural stone on the floors and counters in the kitchen.

When I was a designer, I specified all of those things countless times for homes just like this one. But it wasn’t until this house that I had to live with those specs and I have to say that given the choice, I wouldn’t pick natural stone again.

I’ve always fancied myself to be a purist. I’d always dreamed of the sorts of natural stone surfaces I curse every day now. Years ago, when quartz surfaces started to show up in showrooms I scoffed at first, and I dismissed their claims of easy maintenance. “Quartz composites look fake” I used to tell myself and “I could never live with fake stuff because after all, I am a purist.” After seven years of living with the real stuff, I’m ready to start all over.

Not really, but that’ll be something for the next person who buys this house can deal with. In the meantime, I’ll keep cleaning, cursing and dreaming about some new quartz surfaces I just learned about.

KBIS, the Kitchen and Bath Industry Show, was a virtual event this year but despite the lack of in-person interactions, players in the Kitchen and Bath Industry still used the event to showcase their new offerings.

One of those players, Vadara Quartz Surfaces, rolled out six new patterns of their quartz composite surfaces and each of them is worth real consideration for people looking at natural marble. Marble is a classic surface but it’s notoriously difficult to live with. All it takes is a dripping bottle of olive oil left in place overnight to leave a marble counter with a permanent stain. And I mean permanent.

Vadara’s new patterns don’t have that problem because they’re quartz composites and by definition, they are impervious surfaces. As impervious surfaces and in contrast to real marble, they’re a snap to clean and to keep looking clean.

Vadara’s new colors and patterns follow. Anybody who doesn’t know better, and even people like me who do know better, would be hard pressed to tell that these colors and patterns weren’t dug out of a marble quarry in Tuscany.

  • Bella Dolce – a luminous bright white background with delicate brown and grey veining

  • Calacatta Fresco – a dimensional off-white and grey background with dynamic grey veining

  • Calacatta Oro – a dimensional off-white and grey background with dynamic brown and grey veining

  • Cascada Perla – a dimensional off-white and grey background with dynamic grey and white veining

  • Solano Bella – a dimensional off-white and grey background with delicate grey veining

  • Varenna – a luminous white background with delicate grey veining

It used to be that opting for quartz composite counters meant settling for a material that looked like a combination of terrazzo and concrete but these new patterns from Vadara put that entire conversation to rest for good.

These six patterns are nearly identical to real marble and in all candor, I’d put any of them in my home. What really knocked me off my horse is their Calacatta Oro.

Calacatta marble has always been a favorite of mine. Calacatta is a white marble that has veins of grey and varying shades of brown and gold. 

Here’s a close up of Vadara’s Calacatta Oro: 

That slab looks so much like the real thing that I want to forget about the real thing.

But as a reminder, here’s real Calacatta:

That’s nothing short of amazing.

Vadara’s full collection consists of 32 colors and each takes its inspiration from a natural stone. This material is sold as slabs and comes in two thicknesses, 2cm and 3cm. It’s cut on the same equipment and sold by the same fabricators as natural stone.

If you’re looking at natural stone for your home, you owe it to yourself to look into Vadara.

17 February 2021

Tips on DIY Bathroom Renovation

Bathroom renovation is one of the exciting DIY projects that you can embark on. If you're not sure when you should think of remodeling, check this page. But before jumping in with both feet, there are a few less exciting things to think about so that your project turns out exactly the way you envision it. 

Your artistic freedom and sense of decoration can come to the fore regardless of the size of the room. Still, the DIY remodeling of larger rooms gives you more choices, while smaller spaces need to be deprived of something.

Plan In Advance

In order to make your bathroom renovation project go as smoothly as possible, you need to take some time to plan and organize everything. The base of your project should be your vision and ideas.

Next, your plans should include the estimation of the time and costs of the project. Your budget is a significant factor which you shouldn't neglect. Although you'll do most of the job yourself, you still have to pay for furniture, appliances, decoration, etc.

Check the Current Condition

One of the first steps to take when you start planning your bathroom renovation is to check how this room looks now. Maybe it needs installation repairs, so check all plumbing fixtures for leakage. Also, make sure to inspect the electrical wirings. If they are obsolete and worn out, preventive replacement is always a better solution than emergency repair.

If everything works fine, you might just want to refresh it a bit. Some people are crazy about new trends, so they change the lighting or essentials every year. If this desire for changes hit you, take a good look at what you have at your disposal. That can bring you some savings.

Tiling by Room Requirements

Tiling is something that you should include in your bathroom remodel plan. You can choose from a wide variety of colors and dimensions. Pick something that will go well with the rest of the room. Make sure that the tiles match up with each other well, especially around your shower and tub. You don't want to install too many tiles and have the room looking crowded. 

When it comes to the faucet and shower, you can still use tile if you wish, but you might want to go with something more sleek and classy for your bathroom renovation. Some people choose glass for their sinks and tubs because it's both beautiful and durable. This material also gives a modern look, making it easy to incorporate into any design. If you choose glass for bathroom essentials, match them up with the rest of the room.

Forget about Bulky Furniture and Appliances

The idea of minimalism is generally accepted, and you can use it for bathroom renovation. It's a perfect time to get rid of bulky essentials and appliances that take up too much space and make you feel cramped.

Today, you can find smaller versions of bathroom furniture and appliances on the market. They are just as useful as the standard ones, but they take up far less space. The same goes for the tub. Consider replacing a classic bathtub with a smaller hot tub. If you place it in the middle of the room (provided you have a larger bathroom), you will feel like you are in a spa.

Think about a Vanity

If you will replace your existing sink or faucet, choose something that is both functional and beautiful. You should think about getting a vanity if you don't have it. Double or single-sink? That will depend on the size of the room. But you really don't have to waste money on double-sink vanity. Two people using sinks in the house bathroom at the same time is a rare situation.

An even better choice is a vanity with shelves. It will allow you to keep your toiletries on hand and prevent them from being hung around. The mirror is an unavoidable part of the vanity. Think about the lighting inside it or some attractive decoration.

Check the source below for tips on choosing bathroom lighting:


A complete bathroom remodeling will cost you more than just getting the basics done. That's a large DIY project, and if you don't have a budget sufficient to meet your wishes, you should always plan out your remodel in stages. That way, you'll get what you want without robbing a bank.

11 February 2021

The Guide In Finding Reliable And Affordable Plumbers In Canberra

Faulty water heater, slow draining sink, dripping faucets, leaking pipes, and much more are the problems that may happen over time, especially in old houses. However, redoing your kitchen or bathroom should be entailed by the assistance of professionals.

Instead of doing it yourself, which might inflict a problem (read more), try getting yourself one.

Finding a plumber may no longer be a problem, as many people can offer you their service. They often circulate in digital media; some offer 24/7 service, making it convenient for you to contact one of them.

However, the challenge is how do you find a plumber in your area that is reliable and affordable? How are you going to find a plumber that provides a service that can fit your budget? How would you know that they can meet your requirements as their client?

Here are the factors you need to observe and consider when finding reliable and affordable plumbers in your area:


It is very crucial in finding the perfect plumbers for you. Having them say what they've got from a plumbing service would help you decide and know how reliable a plumber was to them. It is the safest way to rely on them since they have been with that plumber business's assistance and service.

Try asking at least some for feedback in your neighborhood. If most of your neighbors like a reputable plumber, then maybe that plumber is reliable for repairing or redoing a kitchen or bathroom since they have gained other people's trust through their service. These plumbers wouldn't recommend them if they weren't, were they?

Good Reputation

Like feedback, a good reputation can show this in reputable plumbers' sites regarding their job. Their clients often may leave a review on their site with a one to a five-star rating that might help you know what exactly they've experienced in the rest of the project. 

Once a plumber gained a good reputation, they have been known for their reliable work, making it convenient for us to decide whether we get them or not. 

Of course, it matters the most because who wouldn't want to hire a plumber with a bad reputation? We'll only consider what's good to be assured along the working process.


Experience is an essential aspect we must look upon when looking for a reliable plumber because their work isn't easy to comply with. It sometimes requires a certain degree of expertise to perform this job to give the best plumbing service. Often, experience is the best way to gain knowledge and mastery in every plumbing service. That's why always choose a plumber with many years of experience. It is guaranteed that they have been reputable for every project they have.

Also, inefficient plumbers are often charged at a lower cost than those in this field for many years already. Probably, if you're on a budget, you might consider having a plumber that is low-in-demand. However, this is an ineffective strategy, which might cost you more. Usually, the plumber is being paid for their working hours. Thus, having an inefficient plumber working for you might be insufficient to finish the project quickly; it might cost you more, instead. 

On the other hand, if you have reliable plumbers in your renovation, it will save you from repeatedly fixing and repairing faulty materials in your home; given that they are already trusted enough to deliver nothing inefficient but quality.

Completion In Equipment

One of the particular reasons why not all are capable of doing plumbing is the equipment. It is crucial to get a plumber who has complete plumbing material, (https://www.who.int/water_sanitation_health/hygiene/plumbing10.pdf) while knowing its pros and cons. It will help decrease their working time, which is more affordable for every client. Since often, plumbers are being paid every hour. This will also help guarantee that they will complete their service on the same day as possible.


A reliable plumber must ensure safety in their work. They must know the proper safety guidelines in doing such repairing and fixing of leakages and such. This will represent how careful and dedicated they are in working on a project.

Communication Skills

This is one of the essential skills that should be had by plumbers. This symbolizes how well they collaborate with you because they can connect with you easily by communication. 

This will also show how willing they are to listen to your input as a customer, which would help in the renovation. 


You can see this in how engaged they are in accommodating you. This helps, especially when you are still finding one, to ensure that the plumbers are happy to assist you in every circumstance throughout the renovation.


It is significant to find a plumber with a license to do work related to this kind of stuff. This kind of job is risky and might be challenging to perform. Each plumber should be licensed to ensure that they have received certification from the relevant administrations to guarantee that the clients are handled by professionals who have expertise in this field.

It will prove that they are able and they are allowed to perform this kind of service to their clients.

It will also represent that whenever any damage is done due to their neglect, it would be their handle, not ours. It is so beneficial for us, especially when we are renovating under a budget. Thus, the renovation will be under a warranty that is more effective for us.

It's convenient to get a plumber, particularly when you have no experience doing mechanical items such as repairing and fixing. Find a reputable one such as Blueline plumber; they have the professional plumbers trained with the highest knowledge and skill to be qualified. They are also responsible for making critical calculations that are much needed to maintain the water pressure so that further complications would not happen.

To ensure that no issues can arise even after several years have passed, they, therefore, even when prolonged in use, they put commitment into hard work to do all the necessary things to keep it safe and stable. Although preventing it from being broken is unlikely, they offer the best operation they can to ensure that it is properly repaired, ensuring that it won't fail soon enough. As long as it is, of course, maintained by the clients.

06 February 2021

How to Maintain a Septic Tank

Taking care of your septic system is essential for several reasons. For one, you don't want it to be out of commission at any time since it serves such an important function. Depending on where you live and the nature of the issue, you may find yourself unable to flush wastewater out for days. Not only that, but you want to keep your system in good shape since repairs and replacement can be expensive. Let's take a look at how you should care for your septic tank system.


Pump and Inspect Regularly

Owners should make sure that septic systems are inspected every 3 years at the very least. However, many experts recommend that you have it checked every year. This is especially the case for alternative units with features like electrical pumps, switches, and mechanical parts. 

The inspection has to be performed by a certified septic service professional. These systems are usually pumped every 3 to 5 years. 

Even if you have a good system, sludge and other sediments will start building up after a while. A septic tank service will come and pump out the residue using trucks like those you'll find at satelliteindustries.com

Many factors will affect how often you should pump your system. Things like the septic tank size, your household size, the volume of solids in wastewater, as well as the amount of water the household generates will all make a difference. An inspector will be able to tell you when it would be a good idea to have the tank pumped.

Don’t Overload Your System

You want to make things as easy as possible on your septic system. All the water used by the household will go through it, so you need to start being efficient. The average person living in a single-family home will use approximately 70 gallons per day. But all it takes is one leaky or running toilet to waste an additional 200.

This is why you might need to make some modifications and change your habits. Consider adding low-flow toilets and showerheads, and aerators to faucets. Choose the right load size when doing laundry. Also, make sure that you keep your showers as short and sweet as possible. Everything you do will add up, so always find ways to save as much water as you can.

Be Careful with What You Waste

We’ve all been guilty of putting something in the toilet that shouldn't have gone down there. Even if it may seem convenient, you should never use a toilet boil as a trash can. 

For instance, many have the bad habit of dumping grease in their toilet bowl, but that's one of the worst things you can do to your septic system. Other things you should never dump in the toilet include hygiene products, prophylactics, diapers, and even things like dental floss, as it may get tangled up in some components.

These are all things you have to do if you want to keep your system healthy and in working order. It will increase its longevity and ensure that you don’t suffer a shortage at the worst time possible.

03 February 2021

Should You Choose A Specialist Or General Plumber For A Commercial Project?

The plumbing in a building is a system or a network of pipes, valves, fittings, tanks, and other fixtures that are used to supply water as well as remove waste from the building. It most times also includes the heating, cooling, and gas supply systems. Its purpose is to collect, convey, distribute and remove water or other fluids around and from a building.  

The type and size of the plumbing system in a building is dependent on the structure and size of the facility but most plumbing involves two main subsystems. These are the supply subsystem and the drainage-vent-waste subsystem.

Plumbing follows the principles of gravity, pressure, water level, and so on. It can be very complex to understand for the layman so it requires specialization. It is critical to sanitation and in the broader sense to public health. With the benefits of the supply of safe water and good sanitation comes the risk of cross-connections, contamination of water, scalding, or thermal shock. For this reason, getting the right professional plumber to work on a building is quite important. You can see this article for more on this.

Common issues that can be encountered with a plumbing system include leaks and drips, low pressure of water, a malfunctioning system, rust, smelly water, contamination, blockage, and many others. While some of this may be fixed without the help of a professional, it is advisable to call a plumber to fix it. If not done properly and with the right tools, the situation may be worsened.

A system that is professionally designed will have fewer issues. This coupled with using materials of high quality will ensure that your system encounters fewer problems. 

Types of Plumbers

When it comes to plumbers, there are different types as well as different specialties. The most common are residential and commercial plumbers. Some specialize in one of these two but most plumbers are often able to handle these two types of projects. There are also general contractors who work on any project which can be residential, commercial, public, or other spaces. They can also offer services such as gas fitting, installing HVAC systems, and so on. Some may only do installations while some do repairs and servicing.

Specialist plumbers are those who are experts at installing or repairing specific types of plumbing. Examples of these can be drainage and sanitary plumbers, gas fitters, water plumbing for fire protection systems and irrigation, roof plumbers, etc. You can check this link https://mayfairplumbing.com.au for more information.

Plumbing systems typically perform the same functions whether they be residential, commercial, or any other type. No matter the system, it should be able to deliver clean water and remove waste.

Commercial Plumbing

A commercial plumbing project involves working largely on commercial buildings or facilities that people tend to use quite often. These can include places such as offices, parks, hospitals, hotels, restaurants, malls, etc. it also includes any structure that requires large and industrial-grade pipes and outlets. Plumbing for high-rise residential buildings may also qualify as commercial because the system is designed in a way that accommodates several users at the same time. While the scope of work for a residential plumber is similar to that of a commercial one, it involves certain differences that are quite important.

Commercial plumbing has a large scope of work which requires the use of more pipes, faucets, toilets, showers, and heating systems. All these or most of it have to at some point be connected and need to be available 24 hours. They also must not fail. Considering a hotel with several floors for example and with hundreds of rooms.

The plumbing systems need to be top-notch and must be able to support a high level of usage from several people. Plumbers in this system must account for gravity as well as water pressure. They must ensure that no matter the floor level, the water pressure stays the same or come with a very negligible difference.

A key feature of commercial plumbing is its safety requirements. As it is for public use, this kind of system is subjected to higher levels of safety standards. Also, in a commercial system, the plumbing issues that might be encountered can vary greatly.

For example in a high-rise building, an issue on a particular floor can be a result of another issue on a totally different floor which can interestingly be the consequence of another issue. For this reason, commercial plumbers are often prepared to handle multiple issues during maintenance.

What Type of Plumber Should You Use For a Commercial Project?

As can be seen above plumbing is a very critical aspect of any building and not the least a commercial structure. If it is not properly done, it will result in a lot of issues for the owners of the structure. Maintenance will be difficult, costly, and time-consuming not to talk of the fact that you may not get a permanent solution to the issues. 

It is essential that you get the plumbing right from the start of the project. When the building is complete and in use, it is always more difficult to fix these issues. To this end, which type of plumber is best for a commercial project?

The type of plumber you use is neither here nor there. While a commercial plumber can serve as a specialist in handling commercial projects, oftentimes, most plumbers have the capacity to handle different kinds of plumbing projects.

What you should be more concerned about is if the plumber you are engaging can do the job. Are they experienced, licensed, insured and can they deliver what you desire whether they be a specialist or general plumber? You can find information in this guide on choosing a commercial plumber.


The plumbing system is critical to the survival of users of any building. It is also important for public health as a bad or poorly installed system is a recipe for issues and serious health disasters. This is why it is important to get it right from the start of building construction especially when it is a commercial structure. As long as the plumber has the requisite knowledge, licenses and can deliver a good job and follow city codes, you can choose them.