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6 Tips To Make Your Bathroom Look New!

By Mike Holmes

Mike’s Advice / Bathroom Renovation

Wednesday, January 22nd, 2020 @ 10:39am
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Wintertime is a great time to take on a few home improvement projects, but not all projects require you to hire a contractor. With a little research, some basic skills and tools, most handy homeowners can put new life into any room.

If you want to spread your renovations wings or refresh a tired bathroom or powder room, this is a great weekend project. Remember, this project isn’t a renovation, just a refresh, so no need for permits as you aren’t making any changes to electrical, moving your tub, or changing your tiles – because these types of updates all need to be done by a professional.

Here are six things that can help you put new life into your bathroom or powder room.

#6. Replace Old Caulking


Scrape, remove and replace old, broken, or missing caulking with a new application. Make sure the surface is clean before reapplying and use a mold and mildew resistance caulking. It just makes sense.

Watch below to see Derek Ullman from the Make It Right crew replace old caulking around a tub.

#5. Update Your Toilet


Today, with energy and resource conservation being top of mind, it might be a good idea to consider replacing your old toilet with a new low-flow or dual flush toilet. If it’s a simple unit replacement, with no plumbing changes, a seasoned DIYer should be able to do the job, but don’t forget to set the water shut-off value to off!

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A low-flow or dual flush toilet will also save on water consumption.

Also, I was recently introduced to a new type of toilet flange made of rubber, called Masterseal. It’s easy to install, flexible and provides a proper seal and is a great alternative to the traditional wax seals.

#4. Handrails, towel racks and, hardware


Changing outdated hardware and fixtures can make all the difference in modernizing a bathroom or powder room so consider updating your handrails, towel racks, or cabinet hardware. There are many colours, finishes, and styles available to create new looks. Add a splash of luxury with a heated towel rack. Easy plug-in models are available; as well as hardwired models however you might require a licensed electrician to do the install.

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Check out this example from Holmes Approved Homes builder Frame Custom Homes

#3. Lighting 


Update your lighting for a new look. If you are using existing electrical, you should be ok to change it up yourself, but be safe and make sure you shut off the breaker as you don’t want to shock yourself! There are lots of different styles and lighting options available, but remember nothing close to a water source. Electricity and water don’t mix! If you have any doubts or concerns with doing any of this please consult with a licensed electrician.

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Here’s an example of unique lighting above a bathtub courtesy of Vicky’s Homes.

#2. Vanity & Extra Storage


Get rid of that ugly bathroom sink and replace it with a new vanity sink and set of taps. Vanities are a great way to provide more storage space. The addition of floating shelves or a cabinet above the toilet will also give you extra storage. When installing make sure to drill into a stud or use the proper fasteners to ensure your shelf or cabinet is secure. Having a level in your tool kit will also ensure the shelf or cabinet are straight!

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Updating your taps to match your new handrails and towel rack will add a cohesive and finished look. Photo: Precision Custom Homes

If you update your taps to match your new handrails, make sure you choose a tap set that has the same configuration as your existing one for a simple replacement. Otherwise, there will be a bit more work involved. There are 3 main tap types available: a single hole, 4” triple hole, and 8” triple hole. Taps can be installed in the countertop or in the sink, so keep this in mind when choosing your new vanity. Typically, single-hole taps can be used in a 4” triple-hole sink or countertop as they come with a blank base plate to cover the additional holes. However, today, most vanities come with pre-selected tap options that allow for an easy install. Watch below to see my son Mike Holmes Jr build a custom vanity top below.

#1 Colour and Texture Will Transform a Room


A change of color or texture by painting or wallpapering an accent wall will transform the room with a new look. If the old paint is oil-based you will need to paint the surface with a bonding primer before you apply your new paint. I always like to suggest that homeowners use a low-VOC, mold, and mildew resistant latex paint. It’s better for you and the environment. If you decide to do wallpaper, make sure you do this after you’ve painted the wall, as you don’t want to risk getting paint on your wallpaper. Fill-in any holes or imperfections and sand the wall, to a smooth, clean surface. If you are feeling adventurous, you could also consider adding wainscoting for a completely different look. Simple wainscoting kits, with chair rails and baseboards, are widely available.

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And, finally, adding artwork, wall decals, or changing up your shower curtain, towels, and bath rug can also make a big difference too like in this bathroom from Holmes Approved Homes builder Chris Franklin Signature Homes.

Do Your Homework


No matter what weekend project you decide to do before you start make sure you to do your homework, watch videos, and learn as much as you can. Knowledge is power. Be prepared, and make sure you have a well-equipped toolbox and an electric drill. Also, don’t forget to have the proper safety gear for the job (face or dust masks, safety glasses, etc.) and always take all the necessary safety precautions when doing any renovation. Finally, if you think you are in over your head call the professionals. But most importantly, be safe, have fun, and make it right!

If you are looking for more bathroom inspirations for your remodel, check out some amazing photos from our Holmes Approved Homes builders.

Check out these 5 Awesome Home Renovation Projects!

Make It Right®