Archive for Bathing

Ask any child from the age of zero to ten what their favorite activity is and bath time, in most cases, will be somewhere towards the bottom of the list (right next to eating broccoli and going to the dentist). If you’re a parent, you do everything to try to change this, from adding in the infamous floating rubber ducky to bubbles, yet bathing will always be another “chore” that leaves them kicking and screaming. Enter the Welle Household, however, and it’s like you’ve entered an alternate dimension; not only are the Welle children willing to step foot into the bath but they come running (yes, RUNNING) when it’s bath time. In their home, bath time for the kids is fun time and a place to let their imaginations run wild.

For all you curious parents – what exactly is the Welle’s “secret” antidote to the boring bath? Earlier this year, they installed an award-winning American Standard FunBath right over their existing tub. Miranda (mom) chose the Firetruck bath because of the universality of the design for both boys and girls. The four Welle children, whose ages range from 8 years old to 8 months old, get uncommon bragging rights – they get to bathe in a firetruck at home! With three design variations; a Pretty Princess Castle, a Fierce Firetruck and a Customizable Flat Panel version, there’s a Funbath to fit any kid’s tastes.

Since installation, Miranda has been touting the FunBath as the conversation piece in her home; it boasts good looks, reduces the dreaded back strain and was a breeze to install. With a fierce red finish the Firetruck FunBath, which the Welles’ coordinated bath décor around, is nearly impossible to pass without notice. A young visitor was even recently inspired to take a bath after seeing the Fierce Firetruck at the home. And you’ll never stoop to bathe your toddler again. With an elevated frame, the child is seated at a comfortable level so you’re not straining to reach. The FunBath’s acrylic body fits right over any standard 60-inch bathtub, so installation (and uninstalling) is a snap.

After almost a year of use, what’s the verdict? Miranda says “My favorite features of the FunBath are the sprayer so I can rinse the soap out of the kids’ hair easier and the fact that I don’t have to bend over any more to help with bath time.  I even bathe our newborn in the Firetruck!  I never even brought the baby bathtub out of the basement this time.  It’s so convenient to just stand and wash him up in our Funbath that there is no need for the baby tub. And I really like the seat that is at the back of the Firetruck.  It was perfect when our 22 month old was a few months younger.  He could sit there and enjoy a bath with his siblings and wouldn’t have the water getting too high on him.  It’s great that the tub is shallower than a normal bath tub.  It doesn’t take as much water to give the kids a bath either!”

FireTruck Fun Bath for toddlers by American Standard.

Learn more – watch the FunBath video above and click here to view more Safe & Accessible products.

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January is Bathroom Safety Month! This may not seem like the most exciting or important observance, especially compared to widely celebrated holidays like World Toilet Day. However, the Professor recently read some very sobering statistics that should make anyone reevaluate the importance of investing in home furnishings and fixtures designed to help keep seniors safe and steady, especially in the bathroom. A few examples:

  • 70% of home accidents occur in the bathroom
  • Every 2.3 seconds, an adult aged 65 or older suffers a fall
  • 40% of those hospitalized from hip fractures do not return home

Whether you are making arrangements to have an aging parent move into your home or simply wish to plan ahead to grow older independently in your own home, incorporating universal design features into your home can be a wise idea. Fortunately, there are many ways to help prevent slips and falls, even while maintaining a stylish and luxurious bathroom.

One task that can be especially dangerous for older adults – and anyone with limited mobility, such as after an injury – is getting in and out of the bathtub. According to a recent report submitted by the Consumer Product Safety Commission, an average of 370 Americans suffer bathtub or shower-related injuries every day.

An increasingly popular solution to this issue is to upgrade to a walk-in bath. Modern walk-in tubs are attractive and available with luxury options like air bath and whirlpool features. The Professor is also impressed by the special Quick Drain option available on American Standard’s line of walk-in baths that drains water from the tub in less than 2 minutes, so there’s no need for a long, cold wait before exiting the tub.

Other smart safety choices in the bathroom include lavatory faucets with lever handles and/or a single-control function that are easier to operate than other designs. A taller toilet (with a base that measures approx. 16 1/2 inches high instead of the standard 15 inches) will be more comfortable for everyone in the family to use, and also a safer option for seniors.

Ready to start making your bathroom a safer, more comfortable place to be? The Professor is pleased to offer the chance to win a single-control JADO Hatteras faucet to help you do just that. The stylish faucet meets the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) guidelines and is also WaterSense-certified. For your chance to win, just answer the following questions in the comments. The Professor will choose his favorite response on 2/3/12 as the winner.

1. What are some creative ways you gear up your bathroom to be a safe place for children and the elderly to use?

2. What creative remedies have you found to protect against falls on a slippery tub or floor?

3. What are some changes you have made to your home that will allow you to “age in place”?

4. Thinking of safety with the other end of the age spectrum, what are the best ways to baby-proof a bathroom? What are your favorite kid-friendly safety devices?

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Here is how to install a hand held shower head, one of the easiest home improvement tasks you can do yourself. To demonstrate, the Professor will use the Monoglide hand held shower head from American Standard.

The first step is to remove the existing shower head with an adjustable wrench.

Then, apply teflon tape to the threads of the shower arm.

Next you will use your adjustable wrench to install the shower bracket to the shower arm until the water outlet faces down toward the tub or shower. The bracket is where your Monoglide hand held shower head will hang.

Finally, hand tighten the larger end of the metal hose to the Monoglide hand held shower head and attach the other end to the water outlet on the bracket.

 

Last step: enjoy a soothing shower with your new multi-function Monoglide hand held shower head to celebrate a job well done!

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The innovative FunBath tub conversion kit from American Standard Brands has been awarded the Parent Tested, Parent Approved (PTPA) Winner’s Seal of Approval. PTPA Media has North America’s largest volunteer parent testing community, with over 40,000 parents.

Consumers looking for high-quality products and services can rest assured when they see the PTPA Winner’s Seal; it is evidence of product excellence as evaluated by unbiased parent consumers.

The FunBath kit was recognized because even the most bathing-averse children will be reaching for the soap when their bathrooms are transformed by this award-winning bath conversion kit. Fitting over most existing standard 60-inch bathtubs, the FunBath kit makes bath time safer, more comfortable and even uses less water.

Easy installation gives parents the freedom to bathe their children in comfort, while eliminating the need to stoop or kneel while bathing little ones in a traditional bathtub.

The FunBath kit was among many entries from across North America competing to earn the PTPA™ Seal. Because independent parent volunteers evaluate these products in their own homes, PTPA winners are chosen based on merit and consumer experience – not on commercial considerations. As a result, the PTPA Media™ Seal has quickly gained recognition as an international leader in certifying consumer products for quality, effectiveness and value.

Being honored with the influential Seal of Approval from PTPA Media Inc. is a huge achievement for a product geared to families, children or parents. “We’re very proud of the FunBath kit, which makes bath time easier and more fun for both kids and their parents, and can easily be removed without damaging the tub once the kids have outgrown it,” said Rob Buete, vice president and general manager of the American Standard Safety Tubs division. “It means a great deal to us to have the FunBath kit recognized by the PTPA Media community.”

“At PTPA Media, we are proud to play a role in certifying innovative products that families can trust,” said Sharon Vinderine, CEO and founder of PTPA Media Inc. “When consumers search for our Seal of Approval on product packaging and websites, they are essentially searching for validation from their peers. Their peers will have objectively tested and approved these products based on their performance in a real life environment. That type of resource for families is priceless.”

 For more information on the FunBath tub conversion kit or other American Standard products, visit www.americanstandard.com or call (800) 899-2614.

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The typical modern American bathroom often includes a tub/shower combo for bathing. However, many homeowners are returning to the soaking tubs and separate showers of yesteryear when they remodel or build a new home. Why the renewed interest in stand-alone tubs? The Professor believes that it may be because people miss the experience of a relaxing bath. With the hustle and bustle of daily life, a warm bath is a welcome luxury. Alcove tubs just can’t provide the same feeling.

A stand-alone tub can also make a striking statement, style-wise, in a bathroom. Personally, the Professor likes the clean lines and angles of a tub like Porcher’s Lutezia model. However, a tub with a transitional style like the Archive, also from Porcher, is a great choice because it can easily flex between traditional and contemporary styles. Smaller stand-alone tubs – some measure just 66″ x 32″ – are great for smaller bathrooms and urban spaces.

Lutezia Bathroom Suite from Porcher

If you’re thinking of joining the new wave of soakers, remember to do your homework – folks often forget about the weight of the tub once it is filled. Water weighs about 8lbs per gallon, and once you factor in the weight of the unit itself, you can get to 800-900 lbs before you know it. You’ll need to work with your contractor, and follow the install instructions for reinforcing the floor while making provisions for the water lines, blowers and motors. Also, a Ground-Fault Circuit Interrupter (GFCI) is a code requirement in most states.

Even though a little homework (and possibly a little extra remodeling work) is necessary to install a new tub, the Professor finds that the style and luxury a stand-alone tub can bring to a bathroom is well worth the effort.

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The growing “aging in place” segment of the remodeling industry has caught the Professor’s interest before, and now that the wise folks at Consumers Digest have weighed in on the current offerings of walk-in baths, it seemed like the perfect time to revisit the subject. Three different walk-in tubs from American Standard received recognition for their innovative features and the lifetime warranty protecting the door seal on every tub.

Wondering about the benefits of having a walk-in bath at home? Watch the video below.

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It’s true that toilets are the Professor’s main obsession, but a good multi-function shower is hard to beat. Gripping a hand shower to change the spray pattern can be frustrating experience, however, which is why the Professor has been so impressed by American Standard’s new Monoglide hand shower, that features a unique, non-slip sliding button to change the spray. Watch the video below to see how it works.

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Design bloggers tour the American Standard Design Center. To see more photos of the trip, click the photo.

Earlier this month, the Professor was fortunate enough to spend a day at the American Standard Design Center in Piscataway, NJ with a select group of the movers and shakers of the design blogger world. It is a pleasure to share their insights, reflections, humor, and excellent photographs of the trip:

Paul Anater, who blogs at Kitchen and Bath Residential Design, was especially impressed with some of the company’s unique and functional designs and the fashionable digs the bloggers enjoyed in New York.

For J.B. Bartkowiak of Building Moxie, the trip offered opportunities to reflect on design, innovation, performance, and the impact that brands can have when they build intimacy with customers.

Meanwhile, the engineering department’s space age 3-D copier was a big hit with Laurie Burke of Kitchen Design Notes. (The Professor also appreciated the occasional plumbing pun she threw in for good measure, naturally.)

Andie Day (and her photographer’s eye) especially loved the great views and fashionable setting of the rooftop of the Standard Hotel, where the bloggers gathered the night before their Design Center tour.

American Standard’s many green initiatives, including the eco-friendly Design Center and strong emphasis on water conservation, were particularly appreciated by Saxon Henry of Roaming By Design.

Saxon and her business partner Rich Holschuh also wrote about the company’s fixture fixation, the “stylish verve” of the American Standard design team, and shared a video of a portion of the tour on the site for their social media consultancy, Adroyt.

Great shot of everyone: Laurie Burke, Rich Holschuh, Saxon Henry, Andie Day, Paul Anatar, J.B. Bartkowiak. To see more photos from the trip, click the photo.

Many thanks to everyone who attended! The Professor had a marvelous time getting to talk plumbing with everyone and truly appreciates everyone’s thoughtful commentary.

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Upgrading to a whirlpool tub is a great way to bring the relaxing spa experience home with you. The Professor is especially impressed by the EcoSilent whirlpool from American Standard, which is much quieter than a standard whirlpool and uses 45% less energy.

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If you’ve ever had to try and cajole a small child into the tub, you know that bath time typically isn’t fun time for anyone. Bending down over the tub can strain a parent’s back, and no matter how many toys and bubbles you bring to the tub, kids still hate having to bathe. The FunBath, a smart new innovation from American Standard, promises to change all that. The bath conversion kit – that comes in designs like a princess castle and a fire truck – fits over an existing standard 60-inch bathtub to make bath time safer, more comfortable and even uses less water.

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