The world of home improvement is vast – covering everything from paint to landscaping to a new light fixture. But how to keep up with all the new products?
Unfortunately weekly, if not daily, trips to the local hardware store or even the big box stores is just a dream. 1) I get lost in the maze of aisles and 2) I understand it’s grounds for divorce in Alexandria!
Lucky for us then that home improvement “what’s new” guru Don Longay , has done the leg work for us:
1) Giani Granite Countertop Paint - the world’s first granite paint kit for countertop makeovers. Get the premium “look” of granite at a fraction of the cost. Water-based paint kits come in five realistic-looking color combinations and include everything needed to go “granite” in three easy steps in 24-hours or less. One $39.95 kit covers 35 square feet (16 running feet of 24-inch wide counter). Available at paint and hardware stores nationwide. Visit www.GianiGranite.com or call 1-800-650-5699.
2) One2Flush Dual Flush Conversion Kit – in about 20-minutes, you can quickly and easily turn a standard water-guzzling tank-type toilet into an eco-friendly, high-efficiency, water-saving dual flush model that reduces water use by more than 38 percent and can save an average family over 10 percent on monthly water bills. Fits all standard two-piece toilets, 1.6-gallon flush and up. Starts paying for itself immediately. Available nationwide at most hardware stores (Ace, True Value, Do-It-Best). For more information visit www.one2flush.com.
3) Easy Crown Molding by EZ-A-PEEL – offers quick and easy installation and an inexpensive alternative to fancy millwork. Vacuum-formed thermoplastic design overlaps and adjusts to length without measuring. Can also be trimmed with scissors. Installs in about one hour and can be left white or painted to match décor. Offered in three popular crown molding profiles for various sized rooms with 16 inside and four outside corners included. Kits start at under $50. To order call 1-888-EZAPEEL (1-800-392-7335) or visit www.easycrownmolding.com.
4) Dead Bolt Secure Entry Lock Protection – offers a low-cost, ingenious solution that makes standard deadbolt
locks (with a lever or twist-type inside handle) virtually bump-key and pick-proof. It even blocks entry for anyone with a legitimate key. How? A simple spring-loaded device, that installs in minutes, flips down to prevent a dead bolt’s handle from turning — no matter how it is being unlocked. It only costs $9.95. Order online at www.arclink.net.
5) Aspect Peel and Stick Metal Wall Tile – three inch by five inch metal tiles adhere to any sub-surface (drywall, plaster, paneling, and old tiles) and are offered with horizontal or vertical graining. Give kitchens and baths a fresh, new look. Box of eight tiles covers 1-square-foot and costs about $20. Available at some Lowe’s stores or order online at www.aspectideas.com.
6) Telezapper / Blocks Telemarketer Calls – this nifty little device plugs into your phone cord and only intercepts
computer-generated calls — indicating this number is disconnected — which automatically takes you off their list. Other incoming calls are not affected. This product has actually been on the market for some time, “flying under the radar” if you will but the original and an updated model can both still be found at www.amazon.com and via online search engines at prices ranging from $40 to $10. Additional info at www.telezapper.com.
7) Liquid Stainless Steel Brush-on Paint Kit – award-winning Liquid Stainless Steel is the world’s first brush-on/roll-on “real stainless steel” finish designed to give older stoves, refrigerators and dishwashers a new lease on life. Complete kits are easy to use and update an average size refrigerator for $49 or a range and dishwasher combo for only $19.95. Works great on cabinets, table tops and in many other places too. Available at paint and hardware stores
nationwide. Order online at www.liquidstainlesssteel.com or call 1-800-650-5699.
8) Schlage Keyless Entry Locks and Wireless LiNK Option – Schlage electronic keypad entry locks and deadbolts — using four-digit access codes — are now both practical and affordable, offered in the $120 to $150 range. Company also offers Schlage LiNK, the first and only DIY wireless system allowing 24/7 remote control for keypad locks and other home management functions via the Internet. Lock or unlock doors from anywhere, add/remove access codes and control lights. Options include adjustable thermostat ($149) and cameras ($149 wired/$179 wireless) to see who is coming and going. Schlage LiNK Starter Kit ($299) offers choice of keypad lock (deadbolt or lever-handle) and everything needed to set-up a Z-Wave wireless system. Monthly subscription $12.99. Available at Lowe’s, Radio Shack, and www.amazon.com, or visit www.consumer.schlage.com for retailers.
9) Evoba Modular Wood Ceiling System – prefabricated Evoba system (that’s “Above” spelled backwards), offers the warmth and beauty of real wood without the cost of custom millwork. Pre-engineered main beams and cross-tee grid components surround 2-foot square, beautifully finished, recessed panels and offer easy installation. Available as a suspension or surface mount system, in a variety of wood species and finishes, at $12 to $30 per square foot. Available at www.acpideas.com.
10) INVISILED Low Profile Accent Lighting Tapes – strips of miniature LED lights, spaced 1-inch apart, and placed on thin flexible strips only 1/8-inch thick and 7/16-inch wide, INVISILED by WAC Lighting offers five basic colors (white, amber, red, blue, and green). One- and 5-foot peel-and-stick or screw-mounted sections can be cut at every inch. Cost ranges $75 to $90 per foot. Plug-in drivers cost $60 to $120. Maximum spans from 25 feet to 40 feet. For information and retailers visit www.waclighting.com or call 1-800-526-2588.
I think I’m going try that Granite Countertop Paint, sounds like a great tip to pass along to my buyers . . .