Last month in this space, I reviewed a series of market projections for 2014 from Harvard University as well as the industry’s leading associations.
For Remodelers Only
Not every product is cut out for remodeling. Windows and doors have to fit existing openings. Fixtures must work with existing plumbing. Styles and finishes should complement the overall architectural theme. Even when building an addition — technically new construction — remodeling contractors need to blend the new part of the home with the old.
And the demand doesn't only call for quality. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Americans spent $198.6 billion on remodeling projects last year. At a 12.3 percent increase from 2003, the jump is the largest in over a decade. As the industry speeds up, remodelers can't afford to dawdle through their projects. Innovation and ingenuity on the remodeler's end is one step in the right direction. But to really step up productivity, remodelers need to be able to turn to their products as a way to cut time and expense, while maintaining and improving quality.
Thankfully, whether replacing, retrofitting or renovating, new options are being introduced to ease product selection and installation for remodelers. Eliminating much of the grunt work, these products are designed to get you in and out faster, saving you and your client time and money.
The Pharo Helis is the newest addition to the Pharo luxury line. This pre-assembled, pre-plumbed showerpanel is designed to blend into a variety of bathroom settings. The glass-like, multi-component resin panel is easy to clean and acid-resistant. It features a fixed showerhead, halogen light under the showerhead, multi-spray handshower, five body sprays, and flow and temperature controls. The Variotherm thermostatic valve maintains steady water temperatures from all seven outlets and can be set to hold that temperature from shower to shower. Equipped with a special stop button to prevent accidental scalding.
Colors: Translucent white, green and beige
Size: 63 inches tall, 10 inches wide and 19 inches deep
Salesbuddy is a mobile, point-of-sale estimating and ordering program for replacement window products that operates on a Pocket PC. Customized for brands, product lines, pricing, discount procedures, installation methods and contracts, Salesbuddy can be further customized for each customer's needs. The system is being adapted for other replacement product categories such as doors, siding and roofing.
Milgard has added a double-hung, tilt sash window to its WoodClad fiberglass series. It is offered in five standard exterior pre-painted colors with a baked-on finish that won't peel but can be painted. The interior treatment is clear vertical-grain Douglas fir. The energy-efficient SunCoat Low-E glass also protects against fabric fading. Available in custom sizes and exterior colors. Guaranteed to never crack, peel, bend, warp or stick.
The new Pro-Series line of electronic Protech thermostats includes programmable and non-programmable models. Specific models are compatible with single- or multi-stage heat pumps and conventional gas, electric and/or oil HVAC systems. The Pro-Series line features a quick-mount sub-base for easy installation, electronics located inside the compact thermostat housing for easy programming, a large, backlit LCD display, a front-access battery compartment and adjustable temperature differential settings. Available at Prostock stores, which are outlets for the replacement parts department of Rheem's Air Conditioning Division.
The Presidential Series of garage doors captures the look of historic architectural styles while offering remote-controlled overhead operation. These wood doors are handcrafted and designed to complement wood entry doors. Doors are numbered and registered and feature an antiqued brass plate with the factory serial number.
Styles: Adams, Grant (shown), Jackson, Jefferson, Lincoln, Madison, Van Buren and Washington.
The Unico System for heating and cooling is the perfect solution for retrofit applications. Flexible mini-ducts are routed through existing cavities in the ceilings, walls and floors where other systems won't fit. Modular air handlers and coils are easily installed into ceilings, crawlspaces and closets. The system works on the principle of aspiration, mixing streams of outside air with existing air currents to provide even temperatures from floor to ceiling.
These colored cork floating floors can be installed on top of most existing floors. Available in 30 colors, the floor panels snap together and do not require any adhesives. All pigments, varnishes and adhesives used in producing Globus cork products are water-based, solvent-free and eco-friendly.
Select direct-vent gas water heaters provide a flexible alternative to conventional vertical-vent water heaters. This system draws air from outside and vents directly through an outside wall. The Select model (left) is a one-pipe/dual-channel system that requires no electrical power. The Select Power model (right) is a two-pipe closed combustion system that allows for combined horizontal and vertical venting.
Sash replacement kits for double-hung windows provide an option for updating windows without having to completely replace them. Kits include two replacement sashes, balances, and all hardware necessary for installation. Available in standard sizes at 4-inch increments as well as custom sizes. Finished in primed wood or aluminum-clad exteriors, with clear pine interiors. The kits come standard with 3/4-inch insulated glass.
This suspended seating system is a freestanding frame that mounts directly to the floor, making it an ideal retrofit seating arrangement for countertops. The system holds up to 500 pounds per chair. The passive spring return system with stops will not allow the chair to hit the countertop. Available in more than 100 different chair styles. Available in a variety of standard and custom colors.
The HTL Ultimate 2D Hinge for wood and vinyl doors is steel reinforced and corrosion resistant. The hinge allows for both horizontal (+/-2mm) and vertical (+/-2.5mm) adjustment of the door with just the turn of a screw. Features maintenance-free bearings, one-pass routing for simple door preparation and non-removable pins for increased security. A variety of finishes complement any architectural style and match Hoppe handle sets.
PlyGem Lifestyles is Great Lakes' newest line of energy-efficient, custom vinyl windows. Featuring optional Maxuus 7.6 triple-glazed, dual-chamber insulating system that is four times more energy efficient than clear glass tested to withstand wind loads in excess of 170 mph. Available in 13 color combinations and a variety of grid options.
Styles: Bow (shown), bay, double-hung, sliding, casement/awning, garden and patio doors.