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Painting Tips It’s a good idea to select a sink made with durable material that will look as good in 20 years as it does today. Be Smart About Your Kitchen Sink (NAPSI)—You may never have thought about it, but the most used appliance in your kitchen is likely the sink—it’s where people spend 60 percent of their time. What To Look For In The Kitchen Sink (Besides the Dishes) Here are four hints to help you select the correct sink: 1. Conquer space. You don’t want the sink to be so small as to be nearly useless or so big as to overpower the rest of the kitchen. Single basins give you more room, a double basin offers flexibility. Standard depth is 8 inches though it can range from 6 to 11 inches. If you use large or awkward cookware, select a sink to fit your needs. Deep bowls are handy for soaking pans and you’ll be less likely to splash, but they use more space and there’s less room underneath them. By contrast, ADA accessible sinks are no deeper than 5.5” deep to allow room underneath for a wheelchair and less height for a seated user. 2. Ergonomics and convenience. Make sure the sink is set at a height at which you’ll be comfortable when you’ve got a lot of dishes to wash. Consider whether you want a garbage disposal, as well as a hot water dispenser that can provide water up to 190° F for instant soups, sauces and hot drinks. Also, where should the drain go? Most are in the middle but one toward the back of the sink gives you more surface area and also moves plumbing out of the center of your cabinet to give you more room underneath. 3. Looking good. The right combination of sink and faucet creates an ambience that matches your home’s style. 4. Sturdy, reliable material. The most popular material for kitchen sinks today remains stainless steel. Because of its flexibility, stainless steel sinks are available in a wide variety of sizes, styles and types. Stainless steel is heat, stain and chip resistant. However, it can scratch and show fingerprints. To help, one of the world’s leading providers of high-quality kitchen sinks and faucets developed a unique material innovation; a specially finished stainless steel surface that is scratch and fingerprint resistant and twice as strong as conventional stainless steel. Called DURINOX, it was created using technology inspired by the aerospace industry. Another material increasingly used in sinks is granite or quartz composite. These are made from crushed stone mixed with a resin filler, in an average ratio of 80 percent stone to 20 percent resin. This combination produces a material that shares aesthetic qualities with real granite or quartz without the maintenance and durability issues associated with solid stone sinks. It also allows for a range of colors so it can pair well with a variety of natural stone and granite countertops. Composite sinks are tough and highly resistant to stains and scratching, and more durable than quartz. Leading granite composite sinks, such as SILGRANIT, also from BLANCO, boast heat resistance up to 536° F, exceptional cleanability with hydrophobic finishes, and resistance to household acids and alkali solutions. It comes in eight on-trend colors: anthracite, biscotti, biscuit, café brown, cinder, metallic gray, truffle and white. Learn More For further facts, go to www.blancoamerica.com. (Menards) Few changes to a room or home can refresh quite like a new coat of paint. You don’t really need to use a big decorating budget or hire a professional to get professional results Prep the Walls Lightly sand before you start to smooth uneven spots of clumps created the last time the walls were painted. Sanding also helps new paint stick better. Don’t Skimp on Tape It’s worth buying new, quality painters tape to obtain the clean lines professionals are known for. For a couple more dollars, it’s worth it to buy higher quality tape. Shake Things Up If your paint isn’t completely mixed, you won’t get a uniform color on walls. A mixing stick alone may not do the job, instead put the lid on the paint can and hold it tightly in place with your thumbs. Then, shake the paint can up and down for a couple minutes. Consider Skipping Primer Many paints have the primer built in these days. If you’re making a dramatic color change from a dark purple to a light blue, or painting new drywall that hasn’t been painted before, you will need to use primer, otherwise you can save yourself some work by skipping the primer. Follow a Paint Plan The ceiling should be the first thing you paint as it can easily spill or splatter on walls or trim. Next you should paint the trim boards because you won’t have to worry about taping off the wall, painting the wall becoming the last step. Don’t Dilly Dally When painting walls, use a brush to paint a border at the corners but don’t wait too long to paint the walls with a roller as this might cause a bit of a contrast in the colors. Consider Two Coats Regardless if you choose one-coat paint or not, you may not evenly cover every square inch of the surface. Therefore, to obtain a more even, rich finish you might want to add a second coat. Remove Tape ASAP Once you’re finished painting, gently pull off the painters tape at a 90-degree angle as soon as possible. As a general rule, if you leave the tape on a wall too long, there’s a greater chance that the paint will come off with the tape.