Free Do It Yourself Projects: Easy Home Improvement Ideas For The Bathrooms

Even the novice can make simple updates to a home bathroom. From painting to lighting, there are many simple ways to improve your bathroom.

Almost everyone agrees updating your bathroom is one of the best ways to increase your home's value and improve its appearance. But before you pick up the phone to call a contractor to renovate your bathroom, consider tackling this project yourself. With a little patience, learning, and hard work, even the novice can make simple updates to a home bathroom.

Updating old tile can bring a tired bathroom into the 21st Century, and using paint to do it can save time and money. Replacing old tile walls is an arduous task, but painting over them can add a fresh look to an outdated bathroom. The process involves thoroughly cleaning the tile and grout, making sure to remove all residues. If the grout is in poor condition, removing the old grout and re-grouting is a necessary step before painting. Before choosing a primer and paint, consult with a paint specialist at your local hardware or home improvement store. They can recommend different primers and paints depending on the humidity of your bathroom. Applying the primer and paints to the tiles is the final step in the revamp. Use a fresh coat of paint on walls to coordinate with the new tile color. Repainting the entire bathroom will be sure to give it a clean and more modern look.

Paint can also rescue old cabinets and vanities. By removing the doors and hardware from cabinets and lightly sanding and repainting the surfaces, you can easily improve your bathroom's look and feel. If there are several layers of paint on your cabinets, it may be necessary to strip them before adding a new layer. Before reassembling your cabinets, replace the hinges, knobs, and other pieces to match the rest of your bathroom. This simple step will unify the elements in your bathroom.

Old, cracked or chipped sinks with rusting hardware make bathrooms look outdated. With the right tools, installing a new sink is a realistic goal for a homeowner. Bathroom sinks can be mounted in the countertop of a vanity, hung directly on the wall, or supported by a pedestal attached to the floor. Since installing sinks often requires working in tight spaces, special equipment like a spud wrench or basin wrench will make your job easier. A new sink adds value to your bathroom and makes it look more contemporary.

Switching out the light fixtures in a bathroom is another easy enhancement that most homeowners can accomplish. Bathrooms often are small spaces with little or no natural light, and brightening your bathroom can improve its overall appearance. Lighting above the mirror or to the left and right of it is task lighting. This lighting illuminates the work space where you apply make up, brush your teeth, or fix your hair. Because of the way shadows are cast in a bathroom, lighting on either side of the mirror with sconces is preferred. When this is not possible, you can install a vanity bar or vanity strip light above the vanity area. Fixtures should point the light downward and be at least 150 watts combined for ideal lighting. Another type of task lighting you can replace is above your shower or tub, although this may not be necessary in a small bathroom. A ceiling light provides ambient lighting and adds overall brightness to your room. As you remove any old fixture, carefully observe how it is wired. Remembering this will help as you install your new fixture. Another easy improvement for your bathroom is to add a dimmer switch. The stark brightness of bathroom lighting may be perfect for applying makeup or shaving, but provides little ambiance for a relaxing bath. By controlling your light, you can control the mood of your bathroom. When working with electricity, safety is always first. If you are a novice, you may want to consult with a certified electrician before starting your project. It's essential that you remember to turn off the power and test your wires before starting any work. For added protection in the bathroom, install GFCIs, ground-fault circuit interrupters, to your bathroom circuits if they don't already have them. These are used in any area where there is wetness to keep you safe from electrocution.

Finally, simply replacing your bathroom fixtures brings a unified and clean look to your bathroom. Installing hooks, toilet tissue holders, racks, and towel holders require little more than a screwdriver. Consider replacing your shower head, bath drain, and tub faucets, too. If your sink is in good condition, only replace the faucet for a new look. The fixtures don't need to be expensive, but updating these details will make a difference in your bathroom.

While the bathroom was once valued only for its functionality, it is increasingly growing in importance in the modern house. It's the room where we prepare to face the world and relax at the end of the day. With simple upgrades, even an outdated bathroom can have contemporary luxuries, a fresh design, and modern convenience. And the good news is that even a home improvement novice can tackle these tasks.

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