Springtime and Clean Windows

Have you ever wondered how those professional window washers move so fast with the squeegee, and the windows turn out perfect? Well, there really are some tricks to it that are simple to learn, and once you do, dare I say it, you may even enjoy washing windows? It is possible!

So, read on for our Washing Windows Tricks:

The first trick is to invest in a good squeegee. They aren’t expensive and they are worth every cent! Those $1.99 ones just will not do. A professional squeegee has a very soft, rubber blade with no imperfections in it.  You can also get extra rubber blades and simply replace that when it wears out. There are many sources to get one, and a professional squeegee usually runs around $10 and up.

Secondly, do your windows on a cool, or cloudy day.  If you HAVE to do it in the sun, do it in the morning. What you want to avoid here is heat. Heat works against you.

Now to get cleaning. Get a bucket of lukewarm water (not hot), and add 2-3 tablespoons of plain ammonia. Use a sponge that has a white scrubber on the other side (don’t use the green ones, they are too course). Wet your window with the sponge side, then flip to the white scrub pad side, and scrub the window. You’ll be able to “feel” when it’s clean. You’ll feel rough patches, etc when it’s still not clean. This is a step most people fail at, if the window simply isn’t clean, it’s going to look cloudy when done. Scrub well.

You’ll also need lots of clean, white cotton rags or lint free towels/cleaning cloths. Diapers work great here. Dry by hand a 1 inch strip at the top of the window. The trick for no streaks with the squeegee, is placing the dry rubber blade on a dry window. Take the squeegee now and place it at the top of the window in that 1 inch dry strip. Pull down smoothly. Dry your squeegee blade with between each sweep.

To finish the window, if need be, do one last sweep left to right at the bottom of the window.

Finally, take a dry, clean cloth and run with your finger down each window side and across the bottom to clean and dry the edges. They should look perfect! And you’ll feel great having clean windows.

Think you need to replace those windows? Well give Adams Design Construction a call at 608-241-9009, we’re here to help!



7 Signs You Need a Toilet Replacement

When your toilet stops working, the most obvious conclusion is that you need toilet replacement. But, it is not necessarily the only solution.

Knowing whether or not it is time to buy a new toilet can be difficult. There are many factors involved such as the age of the toilet, the location of the toilet, as well as the condition of the floor surrounding the toilet.

Whatever the case is for you, knowing when to replace your toilet is important and should be done as quickly as possible. So keep reading to find out if it is time for an upgrade.


1. Constant Clogging

No one wants to have to deal with a clogged toilet. Unfortunately, they’re pretty common. This is especially true for low flush toilets that use less water than the standard.

Although the occasional clog is normal for a toilet, if you have more clogs than usual, it could be a sign that you need toilet replacement. Luckily, with new

2. Cracks

If you begin to notice puddles of water forming around your toilet, you should look for cracks in the porcelain. Even if the toilet itself is working fine, small leaks can cause it to waste a lot of water.

That water, when exposed to your floor, can lead to severe damage and rot. It can also cause mold and mildew to grow which is unhealthy for your family.

3. Too Many Repairs

There is no reason that a toilet should need regular repair. If you find yourself calling the plumber often, then you should consider toilet replacement.

4. Age

There are plenty of old toilets out there that still work just fine. But older toilet models were much less efficient than the ones made today.

You may find that through toilet replacement, you can save both money and water. That means you’ll be helping your pocketbook at the same time as helping the

5. Wobbling

A wobbling toilet could be just a simple fix. A lot of times the only thing wrong is that the screws are loose that hold the bowl to the floor. If that is the case, then a plumber would be able to easily tighten the bolts on your toilet, ensuring it stays in place. They can also perform pipe maintenance while they are there.

But wobbling may signify a more serious issue. It could be that the floor beneath your toilet is becoming water damaged and starting to rot away. If that is the case you will need toilet replacement. You will also need to replace the floor around the toilet if it is damaged.

6. Surface Damages

Toilets are ugly enough when they are new, but if you have scratches on the surface of your toilet, it is even worse. These scratches aren’t just the cosmetic issue they seem.

Scratches in the porcelain of your toilet can make it difficult for you to keep it clean. They make a great place for bacteria to grow.

7. Built-Up Mineral Deposits

If you live in an area that has hard water, such as Dane County and the lime bed, the minerals in it can collect in the inlet holes and siphon tube of your toilet. This buildup can cause the water in your toilet to flow inefficiently.

In some cases, you can remove the buildup by chipping away at the mineral deposits with a pick and a hammer, but this doesn’t always work. If the buildup in your toilet is really bad, you may be in need of a toilet replacement.

To Replace or not replace:

By considering the state of your current toilet, you will know whether you are ready to purchase a new one. Look for surface damages, mineral deposits, wobbling, leaks, and age to signify it is time for a replacement.

If you do decide to replace your toilet, you should consider a dual flush, or low flush model to be environmentally friendly.

Need more than a toilet upgrade, then give Adams Design Construction, Ltd a call at 608-241-9009, we love to help!

Layered Lighting Inside Your Home

Illuminating a home is more than buying light fixtures. You have to consider several layers of lighting to create a beautiful living space. Know about layered lighting and get ready to brighten up your home.

We always think of choosing the perfect colors for our home. We spend time in finding the right furniture style. But, one often forgets about lighting. Lighting is one of the most neglected aspects of a home. The right kind of lighting can make any living space beautiful and comfortable. It has the power to add sophistication, warmth and style to your home. But, lighting a room is not just buying pretty light fixtures. Just as you make a room beautiful with different layers of colors and textures; you have to create a beautiful combination of different layers of lighting. Layered lighting not only illuminates your home but also provides practical lighting solution for your accessories.

There are three basics when it comes to Layers of Lighting. You have to combine ambient lighting, task lighting and accent lighting to create a beautiful amalgamation of lighting to accentuates your home.

  1. Ambient Lighting

Ambient lighting is the first lighting layer. Every room must have at least one source of ambient lighting. You cannot avoid it because it keeps you from getting your toe stubbed against a piece of furniture. By having adequate lighting, you ensure that you do not trip and fall. An electrician can create ambient lighting with the help of recessed lights, flush-mount fixtures, panels, large chandeliers, fans with lights, etc.


Ambient Lighting

  1. Task Lighting

The purpose of ambient lighting is general illumination. But, it is insufficient as a light source for purposes that require more light. For example, activities such as reading, sewing, cooking, applying make-up, etc. require additional lighting. Usually, fixtures used for track lighting are visible. So, it is essential that you choose fixtures that match the theme of the room. You can ensure adequate light source with the help of pendant lighting, low-hanging track lighting, under cabinet lighting, bed-side lamps, bathroom vanity lights and so on.

  1. Accent Lighting

To add drama to a living space, you require accent lighting. You can use it to draw attention towards houseplants, paintings, or any other unique accessory in the room. If you have a beautiful sculpture, accent lighting can help you to highlight it. According to a general rule, accent lighting should be three times brighter than the general light source to create a focal point. An electrician can install a variety of wall scones, track lights, pendant lights, LED tape lights, etc. to emphasize a specific area in the room.

When you are thinking of layered lighting for a room, make a planned decision. First begin with the purpose of the room. Also, finalize furniture. Once you are done with it, think of the focal point the room. After you are sure of the layout, consider ambient lighting, and then focus on task lighting and accent lighting. Remember that there is no need to buy separate fixture for all the different types of lighting. For example, you can use a large chandelier for ambient lighting as well as accent lighting. Make sure that the electrician makes adequate use of dimmer switch to provide you with versatile lighting. Remember proper planning and apt combination of lighting can illuminate your home beautifully. And, as always, give Adams Design Construction a call 608-241-9009, we’re here to help.

5 Tips to Brighten Up Your Bathroom

Your bathroom is more than likely the most visited room in your house.  So here are 5 fantastic tips the D-I-Y can do to brighten up your bathroom and make every visit a pleasure and at the same time add value to your home.

1. Brighten Up the Walls:
To brighten up the walls a simple paint job is the easiest way to do it.  To make it last, use a paint suited for high humidity and do a good job prepping the wall.s  When choosing colors, don’t shy away from bright colors, they can be used to enhance the size of your bathroom.

Small Bathroom Design Tips

2. Replace Waterproof Seals:
With your walls looking clean, bright and welcoming, it’s time to get rid of the old and bring in the new.  Over the years the waterproof seals, such as caulking around your bath and sink, collect mold and can loose color.  A handy tip is to simply replace them for new.  Alternatively, a good scrub down with bleach can do the job for while or clear sealers.

3. New Lighting:
Other items to be replaced are the light fixtures.  the tip here is to use fixtures which match the color and design of your bathroom.  If replacing light fixtures try to keep to the same size as the previous, this will allow little drywall repair.  If you don’t feel comfortable wiring lights, please call an electrician.  It is also important to note that the lights should be bright enough but not overly bright that it hurts your eyes.

4. Grab some New Towels:
Another easy way to brighten up your bathroom is to get some new towels.  Being constantly used, bath towels tend to loose color and fray leaving a dirty look, they also can loose some of their drying ability.  Simply replace them when they wear and new towels are the quickest and easiest way to decorate your bathroom.

5. New Bathroom Hardware:
Lastly, replacing your old worn out hardware, such as faucets, shower rods, etc , is another handy spruce-up tip. Overtime, bathroom hardware can loose its shiny look and become discolored.  Faucets can become built up with lime or mineral deposits, too.  To resolve this, new towel rods, robe hooks, shelves, cup holders besides faucets and other bathroom ware can be replaced with new to make an amazing difference at a low cost.


Want to spruce up your bathroom, but need some help – give Adams Design Construction a call – 608-241-9009, or visit our web site.  We are always here to help!

Double Hung Windows – the new replacement

We all know new windows can help with your energy bills, but when it comes time to replace them, what to choose?  There are several different types of windows. Traditionally, most windows were side-hinged windows, referred to as casements, and sliding sash windows. New opening mechanisms such as friction and pivot hinges are increasingly popular and available in double hung windows.

So,why choose double hung windows? Cleaning. Double hung windows are much easier to clean than windows based on a spiral or string system, because they won’t allow the sash to drop out when you are cleaning them. They also tilt in a way that uses a flush fitting tilt release which is more attractive than the older screwed in tilt release systems. This system works well for two story homes and enables you to clean your windows from the inside.


You may find that choosing a quality window is difficult because of the overwhelming number of options. So where to start?  We suggest picking a window that comes with a solid warranty offered by a quality manufacturer.  Besides your budget, this is an important factor in your decision making, since your windows should last decades.  Also to consider is the material you choose: vinyl, wood, aluminum and composite materials are all available in our area. And after you’ve made your decision, we suggest hiring a professional to install them – nothing worse than spending your hard earned money on new windows and then not have them installed properly.

Remember, window materials, shapes, and sizes vary considerably, as does terminology, so you should read your manufacturer’s literature carefully. Replacement windows for older homes often need to be custom-built to your requirements, which is also something to consider.

Windows are a large investment and if you pick wisely you can save money over the long run by improving your energy efficiency. In order to save money in the future you may be wise to spend a little more on your windows now…

Need help choosing and installing your windows – we’re here to help. Give us a call, 608-241-9009, and we’d be happy to get started on updating the windows on your home.

Bathroom Update – Low Flow Toilets

Do you still have an old toilet, pre 1994?  If so, then you are using a lot of drinking water every time you flush your toilet.  Older toilets waste a huge amount of water, they use approximately 3.5 gallons of drinking water every time you flush.  That can add up to an average of 20.1 gallons of water per person, per day, about the equivalent of one bath. These older toilets account for around 30% of indoor water use.  And it takes considerable amounts of emissions-producing energy – to say nothing of chemicals – to treat all this water, both at the water treatment and sewage treatment plants.  By installing a low-flow toilet you can save all that extra drinking water from being flushed down the sewers.


Congress, in an effort to conserve resources, reduced the amount of water which newly manufactured toilets could flush, to 1.6 gallons per flush.  The first generation of low-flow toilets had some problems with this low water, however low-flow toilets have greatly improved since they were first introduced.  There have been design modifications and outright changes to the method of waste disposal to make low-flow toilets more efficient. There are also dual-flush low-flow toilets available, where you have two options when flushing.  Most dual flush toilets flush 1.6 gallons on the main flush and as low as .08 gallons per flush on the rinse flush.

Something else to consider if you are replacing your toilet is to get a high-rise toilet (also known as comfort-height or chair-height).  They don’t set as low and can really aid aging-in-place.

Whether your motivation is to be more environmentally responsible, or just saving money,  installing a more efficient toilet is an effective and easy way to start to upgrade your bath.

We love re-doing bathrooms, so give us a call and get started with your new bath!

Peace in the Bathroom


Photo Credit: ph.iha.com

When the weather gets colder there is nothing better than a long hot shower or bath. With this extra time warming up your bones during the winter season you may find that your bathroom could use some upgrades, possibly an entire remodel. The bathroom you’ve always wanted can be yours with a design that will fully utilize the space you have. Another bonus to remodeling your bathroom, it can be one of the most cost-effective projects a homeowner can have done.

There are so many things to consider when you start planning a remodeling project of this magnitude. It’s best to break things down a bit into categories to limit some of the planning stress. There are so many resources online that will allow you to preview almost every style out there. In most cases you’ll be able to see what a completed project looks like.

Feel free to take a look at our work for some inspiration. So where to start? Again keep the thought process categorized. What kind of flooring do you have in mind? Tile works so well in small or large bathrooms, it will add style to the smaller space without being overwhelming. In a larger bathroom it creates an elegant effect.

The shower or tub is always a major focus in the bathroom. Saying goodbye to the basic will allow you to have more control over water flow, mix and temperature. Don’t forget to think towards the future when planning your shower or tub set up though. A great design will grow with you as you age or have children, unless of course you’re doing a master bath. In that case it’s all about you!

Freestanding bathtubs are quire striking and can set the mood for rest and relaxation. With the chaos of life constantly pulling you in many directions keep peacefulness at the center of your bathroom design so you have a place to escape, even if it’s just for a half hour.

Take a deep breath and let us help you design the bathroom of your dreams!