Degrading Old Floor Registers

By: Shane Hester

Replacing a flooring system and not installing new floor registers that match the new floor is an unsightly mistake, yet easy to overlook.

If you are a homeowner, then you will have to hire a flooring contractor at some point, to replace or cover up the carpet, vinyl, hardwood or some type of flooring in your home.

And when you do, make sure you get all of the accessories that go along with the new floor, as well as match the scheme of the house and/or room where it is being installed.

One of the most common mistakes that degrade the intended look of a room is replacing the flooring and reinstalling the old floor registers.

You may be surprised to know that 75 percent of the floors that are replaced each year get accessorized with degrading old floor registers, instead of new decorative floor registers to match the scheme of the rooms.

Before I get into the selection process, I want to point out how and why this happens.

When most of us need work done to our homes, the first thing we do is pickup the yellow pages or go to some sort of online phone book and look for someone we think can do what we need, schedule an appointment and wait for them to show up.

Even though this works for some people, this is not the best way to get a professional job done and done with all the right products. Simply because most of the businesses listed in the phone books are contractors, not decorators or designers and only care about giving you what you want not what you need.

The best choice is to visit a local flooring center so you can view a larger selection of products and get ideas from their decorators on how to match accessories, like floor registers, to the actual flooring you are going to have installed.

Even if you decide not to purchase from that store, at least you will have a better understanding of what you need so you can make sure to mention to the contractor that you want to have decorative floor registers installed to match your flooring.

Thankfully, this most commonly overlooked issue of installing new floor registers to complement your new flooring, is something anyone can do themselves. So if hindsight is 20/20, do not worry, you are not stuck with what you got.

This brings us to the issues of how to choose and install floor registers, heating registers, grates, grilles or what ever term you like to use.

Let us begin with the installation so you know how to choose the right sizes. All you have to do is remove the existing registers, usually done with a screwdriver, measure the length and width of the opening in the floor, and reinstall until you get the new ones.

Subtract 1/8" to 1/4"(depending on how square the opening is) and this is the inside dimensions for the new floor registers.

You can now use these dimensions to choose and order your new floor grates.

As far as choices, there are literally hundreds of different styles and finishes to choose from. Pick colors or finishes matching each room, but try to stay with the same style throughout the house. This will keep each room coordinated together.

If you have some rooms of your home that you change the colors or decorations in often, it is best to select neutral colors to these room. Also make sure to take cabinets wallpaper and other decor in the rooms into consideration.

You may also want to look at replacing the air return grilles to match the look of your new floor registers.

By following these guidelines, you can have a wonderful looking home interior that stands out in the crowd, and usually for less than $250 bucks.

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