Category Archives: flooring

Home Upgrades That Won’t Break the Bank

living roomWe’ll never forget our recent conversation with a woman who informed us that it took 37 years to get her home just the way she wanted, and now she was done. We were dumfounded, but she’s right; unless you take on a full home renovation down to the studs, customizing your home to your needs and taste happens slowly, home improvement project by home improvement project. Even with a full renovation, there are always upgrades that need to be done to update your home over the life of your home.

If you’re like most people, you’re also updating your home on a budget and continually looking for home upgrades that won’t break the bank. Or your need for home upgrades is based on a pet, kids or, well, life.

  1. tile flooringTile flooring. Tile flooring, such as porcelain, ceramic or slate, is a DIY project or low-cost home project if you want to hire the pros. It’s also incredibly durable, water-resistant and can be installed over radiant flooring (which is incredibly nice during our cold Wisconsin winters). Because it is water, odor and mildew resistant, porcelain tile flooring is ideal for laundry rooms, bathrooms and kitchens. It also comes in a variety of colors and updated looks, giving you a beautiful, updated look—among other benefits of tile flooring that we’ve written about.
  2. Refinishing floors. Give those old, hardwood floors a whole new life without having to pay for new, hardwood floors. We’ve written about the advantages of wood floors in your home before: wood floors are durable, long-lasting, easy to clean and capable of being refinished many times over the life of your floor. They’re also stunning, and can be refinished in any color you choose.
  3. Carpet cleaning. If you’re giving your wood floors a new lease on life, why not grace your carpets with the same? Carpet cleaners can get out the biggest of stains and remove allergens. To be clear: we’re not talking about those rent-a-cleaners. Contact a professional carpet cleaner. Professional carpet cleaners can give you a better bang for your buck just by giving your carpets a deep (with an emphasis on deep) clean that makes them look new again.
  4. backsplash tilesKitchen backsplash. A kitchen backsplash can make your kitchen look finished without having to remortgage your home. The other advantage of a kitchen backsplash is huge amount of options: subway tiles, mosaics, combinations of metal and tile, glass backsplash tiles—the list of backsplash tile options can go on and on.
  5. New countertops. There are so many options for updated, budget-friendly countertops on the market today. Everyone’s idea of the definition of “budget-friendly” is different, but a little bit of research can go a long way. High-definition laminate countertops give your kitchen the look of stone without the price—and with less maintenance and solid durability. Stone options, such as granite, that fit within your budget and give you a high-end look. Wood countertops that give your kitchen a rich or rustic look, and a unique appearance that you don’t see everywhere.
  6. carpet remnantsCarpet remnants. If you look in the Y’s Way Flooring dictionary (okay, we’re making this book up), a carpet remnant is defined as, “a section of carpet leftover and available for sale at a discounted price, perfect for smaller rooms such as hallways, offices, bedrooms and basements.” That definition says it all, and makes sense for a small room that needs new flooring. Ask about the carpet remnants at a Y’s Way Flooring, and know that the supply is limited—carpet remnants are sections that are left over so what you see is what you get, but the supply is changing regularly.
  7. Curtains and window coverings. Outdated curtains and window coverings are one of the easiest home improvement projects that can give your room a whole new look. Even renters can update curtains and window coverings since they are home project that won’t endanger their security deposit. In addition to aesthetics, curtains and window coverings also have other advantages and require far more thought and measuring than the average homeowner gives them. If you need assistance with choosing curtains and window coverings for your home, consult the professionals for their recommendations.
  8. Light fixtures. For us, it was the ugly glass ball light fixture over our kitchen sink. That outdated fixture had to go. And once it was, our kitchen took on a whole new, updated look. Light fixtures are a home upgrade that won’t break the bank, especially if you do your homework and look for deals.

Don’t feel you need to upgrade your home alone. Stop in at a Y’s Way Flooring in Watertown, Oconomowoc or Lake Mills to look at carpet remnants, tile options and to ask their professionals questions. Or schedule a carpet cleaning appointment or ask questions about your next home project via Facebook or email. Whatever your home upgrade is, we’re here to help as long as you’re working on your home—even if it’s for 37 years like the woman we talked with.

What’s the best vacuum for my carpet?

10431434_10153077151679378_8048289848300003576_nIn the market for a vacuum cleaner? It’s not a small decision given the angst you put into selecting the right flooring for your home. One of the most important factors in your vacuum purchase is who you are looking to for guidance. We can hear your reaction: say what?

Yes, that’s right. If you recently installed new carpets, it’s best to look to the carpet manufacturer of your flooring for advice. With the increased push by vacuum manufacturers to increase suction, carpet manufacturers like Mohawk, Shaw and Bieulieu have guidelines for carpet care and even make vacuum recommendations:

http://caressbyshaw.com/care-warranty

http://www.mohawkflooring.com/flooring-care-maintenance/vacuumingsoftcarpet/

http://www.blissflooring.com/bliss/home-carpet/cleaning/vacuuming.aspx

Why should you care what they think? Besides the fact that the carpet manufacturers perform extensive testing to determine what’s best, the kind of vacuum you own could affect the warranty. Simply, if your vacuum damages your flooring, and the vacuum is not a recommended brand, you’ve got a damaged carpet and nowhere to turn to remedy the problem.

With that said, please don’t stop vacuuming your carpets. Your carpet needs regular carpet cleaning by professional cleaners and maintenance to keep it looking its best and remove allergens. But when it’s time to buy a new vacuum cleaner, check out these websites or visit the pros at Y’s Way Flooring. We’ll help guide your vacuum cleaner purchase so you don’t end up with results that suck the money out of your pocketbook.

Why You Don’t Need Luck to Choose the Right Floor

1926662_10152777203739378_7515375266822588355_nThrow your four-leaf clover away. You don’t need the luck of the Irish to choose the right floor, or a rabbit’s foot. What you do need is a bit of research and advice to choose the flooring that works in your home—even with all the foot traffic, water spills, kids or pets. Where should you start your research? By taking these factors about the room that needs the flooring into consideration:

  • Water. An educated decision now can save you the headache of a warped floor later. Water can be your worst nightmare on laminate and wood floors, so a bit of planning now eliminates the hassle of replacement or repair. If you have a room where water may splash or form puddles, such as a bathroom, mudroom or kitchen, plan ahead. Consider vinyl plank flooring which has the look of wood, or any kind of tile floor which handles water like a pro. A room with the chance of a spill doesn’t mean you can’t get a wood floor—it just means being mindful of wiping up the water as soon as possible.
  • Traffic. Is the room a busy walk through? An area where your family plays, runs and tromps? Is it a room where your pet spends most of their time? Is the traffic that comes through full of mud, snow, sand and lord-knows-what-else? Use that knowledge to determine what kind of flooring would work in that particular area.
  • Maintenance. You don’t want to purchase a floor, have it installed and then end up with damage because you don’t care for, clean or vacuum it properly. Find out what kind of cleaning and maintenance the floor needs, what products you need to purchase to keep it in great shape—and realistically how much of that maintenance you can take on.
  • Budget. If you have a small area that needs carpeting—a small office, hallway or bedroom—consider purchasing a carpet remnant. Because there is a limited supply, a carpet remnant is discounted. Know the square footage of the room you need flooring for and the price you can afford per square foot. Factor that into your purchase decision.
  • Sub flooring & slab. Are you installing radiant floor heating under the flooring? Read our post about what kinds of flooring work over radiant floor heating. Are you installing this flooring over a concrete slab, like in a basement? Here’s information on what floors work in basements. Sometimes knowing what is under the floor is just as important as knowing what is going to be on top of it. Make sure you mention what’s under your floor to your sales professional when you get to step two of your flooring purchase.

Once you’ve decided the types of flooring fit the bill for your new room, visit a Y’s Way Flooring for more information. Describe the room to the salesperson, and what you’ve found in your research. Ask for advice about what they’ve seen in local Wisconsin homes. Once you’re satisfied with the look, feel and functionality of the best flooring, ask for a quote. Then sit back, stand on and enjoy the feel of the perfect flooring you didn’t need luck to find.

5 Questions to Ask BEFORE You Buy Flooring

It’s easy to fall in love with flooring. We understand, we’ve done it (yes, we’ll admit it!). However, when you have to have that particular kind of flooring, or look, without giving a second thought to how well that flooring fits your home and traffic patterns, you’re just setting yourself up for buyer’s remorse. So we’re here to help you avoid that love-at-first-sight-buyers-remorse flooring purchase. The first step is to ask 5 simple questions:

  • Is there a chance of a water spill (or many spills) in this room? An educated decision now can save you the headache of a warped floor later. Water can be your worst nightmare on laminate and wood floors, so a bit of planning now eliminates the hassle of replacement or repair. If you have a room where water may splash or form puddles, such as a bathroom, mudroom or kitchen, plan ahead. Consider vinyl plank flooring which has the look of wood, or any kind of tile floor which handles water like a pro. A room with the chance of a spill doesn’t mean you can’t get a wood floor—it just means being mindful of wiping up the water as soon as possible.
  • What kind of traffic does this room get? Is it a busy walk through? An area where your family plays, runs and tromps? Is it a room where your pet spends most of their time? Is the traffic that comes through full of mud, snow, sand and lord-knows-what-else? Use that knowledge to determine what kind of flooring would work in that particular area.
  • What kind of maintenance does this type of flooring need? You don’t want to purchase a floor, have it installed and then end up with damage because you don’t care or clean it properly. Find out what kind of cleaning and maintenance the floor needs, what products you need to purchase to keep it in great shape—and realistically how much of that maintenance you can take on.
  • What is my budget? If you have a small area that needs carpeting—a small office, hallway or bedroom—consider purchasing a carpet remnant. Because there is a limited supply, a carpet remnant is discounted. Know the square footage of the room you need flooring for and the price you can afford per square foot. Factor that into your purchase decision.
  • What is under the flooring? Are you installing radiant floor heating under the flooring? Read our post about what kinds of flooring work over radiant floor heating. Are you installing this flooring over a concrete slab, like in a basement? Here’s information on what floors work in basements. Sometimes knowing what is under the floor is just as important as knowing what is going to be on top of it. Make sure you mention what’s under your floor to your sales professional when you get to step two of your flooring purchase.

The second step is to ask the professionals. Stop in at Y’s Way Flooring in Watertown, Oconomowoc, or Lake Mills and ask them the hard questions: what would you recommend? What have you seen work in local homes? What is the price? What is the cost of installation? Once you’re confident you have the ideal flooring that looks good and works in your home, ask for a quote and schedule installation. The last step is to enjoy your flooring, free of buyer’s remorse, and know you made a great flooring purchase decision that works and looks great.

We’re Thankful for YOU this Holiday Season

holiday graphic_ysWe received this gift via email from one of our recent customers, Jason:

“Yesterday we had new carpeting installed in our spare bedroom. The quality and professionalism that this company shows is bar none. A couple years ago, we had carpet installed in our main bedroom and staircase by a previous competitor in Watertown. The carpet they installed was their mid grade selection. When shopping around, we went to your store and wanted an inexpensive carpet for this spare bedroom.

When I got home yesterday and walked on the new carpet and the carpet that was installed previously was like comparing apples to oranges. We learned a lesson, go with the best first, Y’s Way. Cannot be more happy with the service as well as the price!! Thank you!”

Thank YOU, Jason!

THANK YOU to all our customers for your support his year! We appreciate your business, positive reviews and referrals. Thank you for sharing our Facebook page posts and stopping by our stores in Watertown, Oconomowoc and Lake Mills. If you need flooring in 2015, please stop in at one of our Y’s Way Flooring locations. We’d be honored to assist you as you look for vinyl plank flooring, hardwood, tile and carpet, carpet cleaning and window treatments.

Happy Holidays from all of us at Y’s Way!

5 Ways to Protect Your Floors from the Holidays

wood floor_with inlay

Keep those floors beautiful this holiday and all year.

As the old song says, “it’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas.” Unless you live in a box, you’ve seen the signs: the holiday lights on all the houses, Christmas trees on top of cars and trucks, and a full blanket of snow from Jefferson to Watertown to Fond du Lac and every Wisconsin town in between (and north). While the signs of the holiday are beautiful, they also wreak havoc on your floors. So how do you protect your floors from the joys of the holidays?

  1. If you’re getting a real tree, buy floor protection. Believe it or not, it’s not expensive to protect your carpet, wood floor or laminate from the watering that comes with a real tree. Buy a round, plastic protector from any hardware store so the water doesn’t damage your flooring.
  2. Rugs, rugs, and more rugs…and towels. If you have a laminate or wood floor, water from melting snow is the enemy. Keep rugs by all exterior doors for your guests and family to clean off their feet, and keep a towel handy to clean up any stray snow spills. If you have a dog, clean off paws before they enter the house.
  3. Carpet clean after the holidays. Get rid of the stains from Grandma’s wine and all your holiday parties as soon as possible so the stains don’t set in permanently. Don’t just rent a carpet cleaner from the local store—use a professional service that can get those deep stains out. If another family member is hosting the holidays, give them a thank you gift for all their work: a professional carpet cleaning.
  4. Protect your wood floors from scratches when moving furniture, tree and decorations. This is one of the cheapest, and most important, ways to protect your laminate and wood floors: felt pads.  Make sure you have felt pads on the bottom of your chairs and furniture when shifting things around. Use caution when moving anything around to prevent scratches.
  5. Vacuum and dry mop regularly. Keep your carpet in shape with regular maintenance. Dry mop your hard floors, and sweep to keep the dirt and grime at bay.

If you can, ask your guests and family to take off their shoes at the door so snow and dirt doesn’t get tracked through the house. If you have any questions about protecting your floors, or about new flooring to replace damage, contact Y’s Way for assistance. Just remember: a little bit of prevention goes a long way toward keeping your flooring gorgeous through the holidays and into the New Year.

When to Face the Music: 7 Signs You Need New Carpet

Consider purchasing a remnant for small carpeted areas.

Consider purchasing a remnant for small carpeted areas.

You’ve ignored that nasty carpeting, put rugs over stains and used cleaners until your hands are raw. Eventually, however, it’s time to face the music and consider replacing that smelly and worn carpet with new wood floors, tile or carpet. With the upcoming cool weather coming (and that white stuff), now is the time to take notice of those telling carpet-replacement signs:

  • You realize that gelatin stains all the way to the pad. Have carpeting under your dining room table? Swap it out with flooring more ideal (think laminate, wood or tile flooring) for kids and their red, green, blue and purple messes.
  • All that carpet cleaning in the world is never, EVER going to get that stain out. It’s that bad.
  • You need to sell your house. Consider putting in new flooring or having a full house carpet cleaning before you put your house on the market. (Just make sure people wear booties when coming in for showings). Your investment means a lot to buyers, and can influence their decision to purchase.
  • There are holes in your floor. Remember, holes should only be associated with donuts.  Never with flooring.
  • You need to get rid of that pet accident. Many pets mark or repeatedly urinate where they smell urine. Remove the carpet, remove the smell…and the accidents.
  • You’re embarrassed to have anyone over. Can’t have a barbeque with friends because of your nasty carpeting? Want to host family Thanksgiving and holiday parties without getting flack about your worn carpet? Hesitate no more.
  • When you finally realize that, no matter how much retro stuff is trendy, that old shag carpet will never come back in style.

If your nasty carpeting is in a small area—a hallway, small bedroom or office—consider purchasing a remnant. Remnants are the remainder of a roll of carpeting that we can’t use, but you can.  The best part about remnants is the low cost.  Remnants are ideal for any part of your house that is not huge, but could use a cleaner, new carpet.

Do your research before you replace your carpet. Talk to local flooring experts about new carpets and what works best for your home. If you have kids or pets, there are carpets ideal for busy families. You also need to consider traffic flow in your home, as well as what’s under the carpet (such as in a basement) and if you need a new pad. Your research is well worth the time and efforts, especially when you’re enjoying your new, durable, soft carpeting.

What kind of floors work with radiant heating?

If you're installing radiant heating, you have many flooring options.

If you’re installing radiant heating, you’ve got lots of flooring options.

Ever felt warm flooring under your feet? In addition to feeling warm and wonderful, radiant heating also is an excellent source of heating for rooms where traditional ducting cannot be run—or where you don’t want to deal with the inconvenience of a duct.

Radiant heating is more energy efficient than baseboard heating, and doesn’t lose energy through heat loss like forced air systems. For people who suffer from allergies, radiant heating is a welcome alternate heating source because it doesn’t circulate allergens like traditional forced air systems.

Whether you’re building or retrofitting a home to take advantage of this even-heating, energy efficient and allergy-friendly form of warmth, you need to choose what kind of flooring to lay over the radiant heating. Fortunately, you have great options that come in a variety of textures and colors, thanks to advances in flooring and subflooring technologies:

  1. Carpet. That soft and cozy flooring not cozy enough? When installing carpet over radiant heating, don’t mess around. Talk to the experts to make sure that you use the right pad and carpeting so you can take full advantage of the heating potential of your radiant heating system.
  2. Laminate. Think beyond laminate wood flooring. Laminate flooring comes in a variety of styles, and can have the look of stone, tile or even concrete. Whatever the look, laminate flooring is a floating floor, meaning it can be installed over a radiant heating system. Laminate is also extremely durable, and can handle any active household’s wear and tear (that means you, kids and pets!).
  3. Tile—any kind! If you are laying a tile that can be cold to your toes, such as porcelain tile, radiant flooring is your answer. Tile conducts heat naturally, leaving you with an even heat that is easy-to-clean and mildew resistant. Tile is also one of the easiest floors to install over radiant flooring.
  4. Engineered hardwood. With the look of real wood and the floating floor properties of laminate, engineered hardwood is an ideal floor for homeowners that want real wood floors and the warmth of radiant heating.

If you’re considering radiant heating, make sure you consult the experts to make sure you select the right flooring that amplifies the warmth of your radiant flooring. Then, sit back—or lie down—and enjoy the warmth of your cozy, warm, energy efficient floor.

10 Facts About Carpets You (Probably) Didn’t Know

How many of these carpet facts did you know?

How many of these carpet facts did you know?

We’re crazy about carpets for their durability and softness. But did you know that regularly cleaning your carpet can actually trap the allergens? We’ve compiled a list of fun facts that are sure to test your expertise about one of the most popular flooring options on the market today. Find out if you know these facts about carpeting:

  1. There are carpets made of that soda bottle you threw in the recycling bin. Millions of bottles are made into carpeting every year.
  2. Vacuuming your carpets for 30 minutes can burn more than 100 calories. (How many calories do you burn? Calculate here.)
  3. 70% of the more than the billion square feet of carpet produced in the United States is produced in Dalton, Georgia (the carpet capital of the world!).
  4. Carpets can be recycled.
  5. The stomach bug virus can live on your carpet for a month. (Ew!)
  6. Carpets were produced as early as 500 B.C. The oldest carpet ever found is more than 2,000 years old.
  7. Carpet is dyed through boiling or spraying. (Can you imagine?)
  8. The famous red carpet that you see at all the awards shows has its roots in a Greek play. The tradition was cemented by passengers of the 20th Century Limited train, who stepped off the train onto a plush, red carpet.
  9. Several pounds of soil can build up in your carpet every year. (Gross! Better call for a carpet cleaning today.
  10. The longest sawdust carpet in the world (made in Guatemala) was almost 4,200 feet long!

How many of these facts did you know?  Do you have any other questions?  Let us know what questions you have about carpeting and carpet cleaning.

Win Water Park Tickets…Enter our National Flip Flop Day Giveaway!

flip-flops1Drum roll please…it’s giveaway time!

In honor of National Flip Flop Day, tag your favorite summer lover in our giveaway post on our Facebook page. One random winner will win 4 tickets to Olympus Water Park in the Wisconsin Dells, to be used July 12 or 13. Share with your friends, and you (or they) could be wearing flip flops while having fun in the sun (and water)! Winner will be chosen June 30.

Any questions? Let us know! At Y’s Way Flooring, we are here to help..and for 10 days, we are here to give away fun in the sun.