Thursday, December 29, 2011

New Year Home-Improvement Resolutions - 5 Suggestions to Keep Your House Protected, Save Money and Do Your Part for the Environment

2012 is right around the corner! It’s time to start new, make lists and accomplish goals. With all the New Year resolutions scattered on your mind, don’t forget to write out your list of home-improvement resolutions you’d like to accomplish in 2012. has offered tips and instructions throughout the year to keep your house protected, save money and do your part to protect the environment. Do the math and figure out how much you can afford to spend on your home this year. Here are five important recommendations provided by

Secure your home. Don't wait until someone breaks in before finding the peace of mind that comes with knowing you've done everything you can to keep intruders out of your home.
While most of the steps you need to take can be performed by a handyman or security professional, there are a few you can do yourself.

Start by increasing the visibility of your windows from the street by cutting down shrubs and bushes, so intruders have no place to hide. Replace door locks at any access points to your home. Leaving outdoor lights on overnight or installing motion-detection sensors can also help ward off bad guys.

A handyman can help with the following:
  • Building a hidden safe into a wall or floor
  • Upgrading single-pane to double-pane windows with security glass
  • Adding metal screen doors or decorative wrought-iron gates
  • Covering up unused doggie doors or replacing them with a secure, locking version
  • Cutting a mail slot into your door instead of using an outdoor mailbox and drilling a peep hole into your front door if you don’t already have one
A security professional can install an alarm or upgrade your current system to include some of the exciting innovations in smart-home automation. Together with a few well-placed exterior and interior cameras, you can easily monitor the action around your home while you're away by simply taking a look at the screen of your smartphone, notebook or iPad. While it used to be a luxury of only the very wealthy, mobile home security monitoring is now within reach of any homeowner.

Resolve to recycle. One man's trash is another man's treasure. Salvaging second-hand materials before they reach the landfill not only helps the environment, but can also save you money.
More builders, re-modelers and homeowners are recognizing the great opportunity that using salvaged building materials can present. Often, these second-hand treasures cost far less -- and come with more character and whimsy -- than similar accessories you could buy new.

Always recycle or reuse leftover lumber, misfit windows and doors, scrap metal and spare masonry materials.

For a remodeling project, the waste might be even more valuable, especially if the home is older. Items such as decorative hardware, light fixtures, sturdy wood cabinets, ornate molding, appliances, hardy oak floor boards and plumbing fixtures can easily be re-purposed.

Get a permit. You may be aware you need to get a permit to add a new addition to your house, but you may be surprised to learn that other more simple improvements also require permits. Anything you mess with in your home -- including electricity, plumbing or structural changes -- will most likely require a permit.
Projects that require permits include replacing a water heater; putting up a fence or retaining wall; replacing shingles; changing the location of a toilet, sink or tub; converting your carport or patio to an enclosed room or garage; adding electrical outlets; changing a window to a door; replacing a small window with a bigger one; removing or moving a wall inside your house; or altering your driveway.

It's safe to say, before you start any home-improvement project, you should check with the city.

Stay up to code. While you're not required to update your house as codes change, you may want to consider doing it for safety's sake, especially if your home was built before 2000. If you're considering doing some remodeling or additions, it's never a bad idea. While there are probably hundreds of outdated codes an older home faces, voluntarily upgrading a few can save you money and keep your home safe:
  • Hard-wired smoke alarms in every bedroom and in the hallway outside of sleeping areas.
  • Ground-fault circuit interrupter receptacles in the bathrooms, kitchen, laundry room, garage and any other space where both water and electricity are available
  • Larger, dual-pane, windows -- with at least 3½ feet of open, removable area -- big enough for a firefighter and his air tank to fit through.
  • Powerful and efficient toilets to replace old, water-guzzling ones. 
  • Handrails on all staircases -- indoors and out. 
  • A water heater expansion tank, which can prevent extra pressure and the possibility of an explosion.

Prep for the monsoon. If there's one thing we should take preventative measures on, it's rain, snow and gusty winds. Take some precautions to make sure your home stays protected from a beating by mid-summer storms, winter blizzards and an occasional North East hurricane.
You can start by plugging leaks in the roof and trimming branches that are close to the house. But your windows and doors are equally at risk of causing problems during the storm if they let water get inside.

If you have a skylight, check to see if there are any weep holes that need sealed, as the caulking only lasts a few years. If you need to reseal any areas, make sure you remove all the old and cracked caulk completely before adding a new layer. Use a polyurethane caulk, which will ward off the wet better than acrylic or latex.

Replace worn-out door sweeps so water doesn't come through the bottom. Also, change hinges and door locks if they're preventing the door from latching securely.

If you're looking to tackle a bathroom project in the New Year, contact Lighthouse Shower Doors to help with your bathroom needs, wants and desires.  Lighthouse Shower Doors provides professional design and installation services for your shower enclosure needs. For more information, visit

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Hyrdoslide Sliding Shower Door Systems

C.R. Laurence Co., Inc. Hydroslide Sliding Shower Door Kits were designed for full standing showers or above bathtub. The Hydroslide System can accommodate a wide range of shower designs with fixed glass panels on either end, or both sides at 90 or 180 degrees. 

Hydroslide is a frameless shower door kit and easy to install. It’s based off of a roller system to make the glass doors slide nice and easy. It’s a more European design with less metal and more glass. 

The glass doors can be any size you’d like, as long as they don’t exceed 88lbs. You can go from the floor all the way to the ceiling, in any shower enclosure with the glass shower doors. 

Check out the CR Laurence Hydroslide Sliding shower Door System video linked below for more information. 

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Brooklyn is Famous for its' Most Spectacular Holiday Light Display in the Country!

Dyker Heights is famous for having a whole block of the most spectacular holiday displays in New York. 

20 years ago, a woman wanted to continue the tradition her mother started of elaborately and brightly decorating for Christmas. 20 years later, and some pretty hefty electrical bills later, almost the entire neighborhood is participating in the tradition.

Some of the most extravagant Christmas light displays are done professionally in Dyker Heights. Others are done by the homeowner, and could take weeks to complete. In addition to over-the-top lights, there are large inflatable Christmas decorations and even motorized Christmas displays.

Get into the holiday spirit (if you haven’t done so already) and take a ride to Dyker Heights in Brooklyn, NY. Most of the displays are between 11th Avenue to 13th Avenue and from 83rd to 86th Streets. 

Dyker Heights is the first stop on a one-hour tour of elaborately decorated houses called What’s With That Decked Out Christmas House? On HGTV. Visit for the program guide. 

Happy Holidays to everyone from Lighthouse Shower Doors.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Tips for Designing Your Dream Custom Shower

With proper planning, plumbing and materials, you can design the shower of your dreams for any space! You can customize every feature of your shower, right down to the valve functions and water pressure. 

Here are a few tips to keep in mind when designing a custom shower, provided by HGTV.

Do the math: to decide how many sprays you can run at once, you have to do some basic math. Plumbing codes mandate that standard heads and body sprays be fitted with flow restrictions allowing 2.2 gallons of water per minute. Depending on your PSI (or water pressure,) a three-quarter-inch thermostatic valve can handle about 13 to 16 gallons of water per minute. You can operate up to five fixtures on one three-quarter-inch thermostatic mixer at once. Most valves this size will set the temperature only and will require separate volume controls in the form of wall valves. A thermostatic mixing valve allows you to control the volume and temperature separately. Similar to thermostatic valves, volume controls can also be found in half- and three-quarter-inch valve sizes. How you organize the volume controls is up to you. You might run three body sprays on one volume control, or you might choose to run one shower head on one volume control.

Ensure adequate hot-water supply and analyze plumbing: If you’re planning on running many heads or sprays at once or you like to take long showers, you’ll need to consider your water-heater capacity and how quickly it recovers. It might be advisable to upgrade to a larger water heater. You’ll also want to note the size of your piping to the shower. If you have standard half-inch supply lines, your water volume will be greatly restricted. The ideal is to have three-quarter-inch supply lines. Note that it’s not advisable to run plumbing on outside walls, especially in cold areas where pipes might freeze. And will your drain size be adequate to handle as much water as you’ll be running? Most plumbers can answer all these questions for you.
Design it for comfort: Consider the room placement and space of your shower. Allow at least a 3-by-3 foot standing area per person. Most people stand from 24 to 30 inches from the wall when showering.
  • Think about adding a short ledge at foot height for shaving legs, steam capabilities, and a built-in seat.
  • Think about the placement of the door and fixtures. You should be able to reach the shower valve or volume control from the shower threshold, and running water shouldn’t aim at the door.
  • Place grab bars, body sprays, and hand showers where they’re readily accessible so the water will hit the desired areas.
  • You can choose from a deluge of products today, including adjustable body sprays, sliding rain bars with pivoting heads, and an array of massaging hand showers and specialty heads.
  • When designing a shower to accommodate two people at once, it’s best to choose a design with a single valve and a single compromising temperature unless the space is very large, as the cooler water will feel like ice water if splashed on the bather under warmer water.
 Contact Lighthouse Shower Doors for all your custom shower needs at 516-543-8672. For more information, visit Don't forget to "LIKE" us on Facebook!

Friday, December 16, 2011

Care & Maintenance Tips for Your Shower Door

Custom shower doors should provide years of enjoyment, beauty and functionality as well as increase the value of your home.

With the proper care and maintenance, your new enclosure will prove to be virtually worry-free. In addition to keeping the hardware clean, it is of equal importance to keep the glass clean. Glass that is neglected or ignored will accumulate water spots, which will eventually turn into mineral deposits.

The best way to keep the glass free of potentially damaging water spots is to squeegee the glass after every use. A routine of using a squeegee on a daily basis is a great habit to get into. It’s a minimal investment in time, and will save you a great deal of cleaning at a later date. 

Using a liquid surface protector to protect your glass is also a good idea. 

By following these simple guidelines you can greatly increase the life of your shower door glass. You have made an investment in your home by including an enclosure of the highest quality materials, so now take care of them! 

If you have any questions regarding these instructions, contact Lighthouse Shower Doors at 516-543-8672 or visit

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

KOHLER Tips on Choosing a Bathroom Design


KOHLER designer Erinn Valencich, offers tips on choosing a shower module, including features like built-in  seating, receptors, and of course - custom shower doors.

Custom shower doors are a great alternative to shower curtains. Shower doors retain heat, have a cleaner look and offer a wide array of styles and finishes. 

Lighthouse Shower Doors service the New York Metropolitan Area, NY, NJ and CT. We provide professional design and installation services for your shower enclosure needs. Whether you're looking for framed or frameless, sliding or single swing shower doors, Lighthouse Shower Doors has the expertise to complete the job to perfection with over 20 years of experience. 

Lighthouse Shower Doors is an authorized dealer and certified installer for KOHLER, CENTURY and QUALITY MANUFACTURERS.

For more information, visit and check out the KOHLER video linked above! Don't forget to LIKE us on Facebook, linked HERE.