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JUNE 5, 2011

Stone of Destiny When considering your next home remodeling project, let Cathy Uda and Selena Willard of Island Stone Center be the ones to help with all of your stone fabrication needs. See page 3 Nathalie Walker photo


Explore HAWAII HOME EXPO at the Home, Garden & Remodeling Show Neal Blaisdell Center • June 10-12 (Friday, Saturday, Sunday) Celebrating our 30th Anniversary • Visit our booth and ask about our SPECIAL SHOW PRICE T. Oki Trading & MarbleHaus Hawaii at the Hawaii Home Expo booth: #204, #205, #206, #207, #208

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Tuning in to Bedroom and Balance


see televisions in the bedrooms of about 80 percent of the homes I visit. Odds are you have one in your bedroom as well. During a feng shui consultation, many of my clients sheepishly say, “I know that I’m not supposed to have a television in the bedroom ... .� Many people are afraid I will tell them to give it up — and I never do. This “rule� that you may have heard about is based on the theory of proper placement and proper usage. Just as in nature you would never see a large oak tree growing in the middle of a bamboo forest, or find a peacock running with the zebras in Africa, you wouldn’t consider putting your dining table in the bathroom or your bed in the kitchen. In the same way, televisions in the bedroom are not considered a “match.� In feng shui, the concept is that the more you place things in their “proper place,� and use each room

in the way it is intended, the the same room. more balanced and peaceOther television-in-theful the energy can be. bedroom theories The bedroom function Some schools of thought The primary function of believe that you can be stara bedroom is rest, rejuve- tled by your own reflection nation and

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intimacy between yourself and your partner. The television is conventionally thought to be contrary to these functions, along with office or exercise equipment in your bedroom. That is because it puts conflicting functions — movement and rest — in

on the television screen in the middle of the night when you awaken. Others say the signal that picks up the stations is still energetically active even when the television is off, and that can disrupt sleep. Insomnia specialists, who do not consider feng shui advice, recommend

taking the television out of the bedroom to indicate to the subconscious that the bedroom is a place for rest. While all these theories do have merit, I feel that asking a client to remove a television for feng shui purposes, if they love it, or askSEE PAGE 14


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The right tools for any stone fabrication job S

tone fabrication can be as simple as cutting tile for a backsplash or as complex as creating an entire new granite kitchen countertop. Either way, the proper tools are required to make the process less of a headache and more of a fun project. Island Stone Center carries a large variety of stone fabrication products to get the job done correctly from start to finish. Tools are always an important key in any home improvement project. Island Stone Center has several tools beneficial in the stone fabrication process. Variable speed angle grinders are a must-have for fabricators — used for cutting sink holes, backsplashes and notches. Wet polishers are necessary when polishing a granite edge. Island Stone Center carries both pneumatic and electric wet polishers, which also can be used for drilling faucet holes with diamond core bits. Small wet tile saws, also available, are helpful when cutting longer straight cuts, such as seams on a countertop. Diamond tools are necessary when fabricating natural stone. Quality diamond blades help reduce chipping on the surface of the stone when cutting. Diamond blades come in a variety of styles and sizes. Diamond blades are used for cutting any type of hard surface such as granite, marble, concrete or quartz. Multi-Cutter blades can grind and shape stone, in addition to cutting. Concave blades are designed for cutting inside circles and ovals, like bowl holes. Diamond Polishing Pads are for polishing the edges of granite, concrete or engineered stone surfaces. Once a surface is cut, the edge needs to be polished to match the top of the stone if it is going to be visible. They are available in a variety of sizes and can be used either wet or dry, although wet polishing produces a superior polish and offers longer life of the polishing pad. Other diamond tools available at Island Stone Center include sink truing wheels, cup wheels, core bits, sink-polishing drums and



Nathalie Walker photos router bits. Stone adhesives are an integral part of fabrication. There are two types of adhesives: polyester and epoxy. Polyester adhesives are used for patching travertine “pukas,” countertop seams and rodding on a dry surface. Epoxy adhesives have a much stronger bond, do not shrink and can be used on wet surfaces. When gluing a “lamination,” which is the process of making the edge of the stone thicker and more substantial, epoxy should be used. Stone Weld is an ultra-clear epoxy that dries in less than three hours. It offers a bond stronger than the stone itself, in a flowing consis-

tency so that the glue line will not look too thick from the front. Colorants can be added to any adhesive to match the stone to make any glue line less noticeable. Island Stone Center’s epoxy supplier, American Synthetics Co., was established in 1962 in Detroit, Mich. Brian Zelek and an associate formed the company to specifically manufacture special epoxy adhesives for the bowling ball industry. Over time, Brian bought out his partner and decided to move to Arizona. Thereafter, he committed himself to creating a superior epoxy line for the natural stone indus-

try, in particular Stone Weld, Super Gel and Knife Weld. These adhesives are very clear in color and have a very low level of shrinkage, making fabrication easier for our local tradesmen. Island Stone Center proudly stocks these adhesives at affordable prices. Always be sure to take safety into consideration when fabricating natural stone, as it is very heavy, weighing around 15 pounds per square foot on standard ¾-inch thick slabs. Cutting natural stone and concrete creates a lot of dust and particles, so be sure to wear a dust mask and eye protection. Disposable gloves

are recommended when working with any stone adhesive. Heavyduty aprons, first-aid kits and hearing protection are all available at Island Stone Center, making it a one-stop shop for Hawaii’s local fabricators. For any type of stone fabrication, maintenance or repair project, visit Island Stone Center, where Cathy Uda and Selena Willard offer years of experience in the trade and can assist you with your stone fabrication needs. The company is located at 1111 Dillingham Blvd. #E1-B at the Kokea Center near Subway and Yohei Restaurant, and it can be reached by calling 848-0989. JUNE 5, 2011 | HAWAII RENOVATION | 3


Keeping homeowners right where they are HOMEWORKS Y

ou’re ready for a hood and children in local new house and schools. They wanted to you’ve been shop- stay right where they were, ping, but haven’t found but in a larger, newer anything that fits your house.” Byxbee pointed out that needs and budget — at least not in your neighbor- the first choice is often to hood. Moving is not an remodel and/or build an appealing prospect because addition. That option is you like the area you’re liv- thoroughly explored ing in now – it’s convenient before making the decision and you have friends there. to demolish and build new. It’s a common scenario, As soon as the homeowner says Jim Byxbee, contacts Homeworks, a Homeworks Construction project coordinator is president and the 2011 assigned to meet with president of the Building them at the property to Industry Association of explore the possibilities, Hawaii. “A big percentage taking into account budget of the new homes we’ve designed and built in older family neighborhoods such as Kaimuki, Kapahulu, Palolo and Kalihi, to name a few, have been rebuilds for owners who just didn’t want to move to a new location,” he said. “Many of these clients were second- and thirdgeneration owners who grew up in the home built by parents or grandparents. They had long-time friends in the neighbor-

and zoning constraints. “If the house has a solid foundation and good bones CONSTRUCTION and the owners really like its look and feel, we’ll give them prices for both a whole accommodate children or completed a home in Palolo house remodel and a new create a multi-generational for an owner who chose to custom home built to their environment, a remodel can demolish an existing 85sometimes be more eco- year-old home that had specifications on the site. “If all that’s needed are nomical. And, it may be pos- developed structural probrepairs, cosmetic work, sible for the family to stay in lems beyond what could be corrected in a cost-effective modernizing the kitchen the home while we work. way. However, the owner and baths, an addition to “However, the new was satisfied with the size and basic layout of the old home on the 6,789-squarefoot lot. Together with the Homeworks design/build team, they worked out a design and floor plan, and the result was a 1,552 square-foot, two-bedroom, one-bath islandstyle home that perfectly suited the lifestyle of the occupants. Tyically, the custom home will incorpo- kitchen in the previous rate all the latest, most home had been small and energy-efficient materials closed up. The new and features, which means kitchen opens to the main savings in terms of energy living areas and includes a consumption going for- walk-in pantry as well as abundant cabinet space. ward.” Recently, Homeworks Natural cross-ventilation

was created by window placement and enhanced by ceiling fans in the living room, kitchen and both bedrooms. Working with Homeworks Construction, a Waialae Kahala property owner was able to replace his 50-year-old house with a new custombuilt two-bedroom, two-bath home for under $400,000, including demolition. The owner noted that potential budget problems were overcome by “a lot of careful advance planning, teamwork, and some compromises.” The Homeworks design/build team will be at Booth 170 at the Home, Garden, & Remodeling Show at Blaisdell Center June 10-12. You can also make an appointment for a free, on-site consultation and reserve your space at the free Homeworks Build New Or ReDo Seminar June 14 from 6 to 8 p.m. at the company showroom, located at 2111 S.Beretania St. Call Homeworks at 9552777.

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The New Standard of Home Building BY KAREN NAKAMURA


he environmentally responsible New Hawaiian Home is designed and built to actively support a modern-family lifestyle. With construction commencing Feb. 1 and involving more than 80 contractors and vendors, the home is on schedule to be completed shortly. We invite you to our open house to learn, see and feel the difference of this new standard of home building on the following open house dates: June 12, July 10 and July 17 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The address is 747 22nd Ave. in Honolulu. Last week we talked about the first of the six green building elements — lot design. This week the project development continues with resource efficiency — a green building element emphasized by project architects from Group 70, Green Sand Inc., Gentry Homes, Kamehameha Schools and led by Daniel Sandomire, principal of Armstrong Design Ltd. In adhering to this green building element, architects were able to design a home that met Hawaii’s median price while answering today’s

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of Pacific Sustainable Building Science LLC, while the ANSI National Green Building Standard verifier is Peter Stone principal of Pohaku Consulting. A major green building component, cement with recycled content, was provided by Hawaiian Cement. The placed concrete for the project was provided by Homeworks Construction Inc., which included building forms, trenching for plumbing rough-ins, placing the moisture barrier and pouring the concrete footings, slab, walkways and the driveway. The concrete driveway and walkways were saw-cut by National Concrete Sawing Inc. to create a pattern while preventing ponding by directing rainwater into the planted areas. Panelized steel framed walls were fabricated off site by Steel Truss & Panel LLC to minimize waste and for quality control. Oceanview Builders Inc. framed the home with the steel framing and engineered floor joists from Honolulu Wood Treating LLC.

lifestyle and tomorrow’s needs. Design goals included green design, aging in place, space for a growing family, space for local-style entertaining, incorporating sustainability, durability and low-cost maintenance. Preconstruction meetings with contractors and suppliers included green training by Rhonda Goyke, principal of Green Sand Inc. The New Hawaiian Home is being submitted for certification to both Karen Nakamura is executive vice green building programs. The LEED president/CEO of Building Industry verifier is Mitchell Johnson, president Association of Hawaii.


with Shirley Pai Hilton, Pres. & CEO, PII Q: What are the different ways of installing wood flooring? A: There are three main methods: nailing, gluing, and floating. The method that is right for your home depends on several things. First of all, your subfloor. If going over concrete, you can either glue it down (after sealing slab with a vapor barrier) or do a floating install (glue boards to one another but not to the subfloor). For wood subfloors, you would usually nail but can also glue or float, depending on material used and budget. To learn more, attend our next seminar. Info below. ALOHA! WANT TO BE A WELL-INFORMED SHOPPER? Please join us for our WOOD AND STONE FLOORING 101 SEMINAR Saturday, June 18, 2011 10AM Please call to reserve a seat

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scratches and scuffs. This wear layer is combined with a clear film layer that adds more durability and helps protect the luxury vinyl floor against rips, tears and gouges. The second layer is the printed design layer that vinyl can be installed other, and not to the sub- offers realistic ceramic, with or without grout, for floor, they can go over stone or wood visuals. a true stone or ceramic most existing flooring eas- The bottom layer is the look. Consider hiring an ily. All you have to do is tile backing, which adds Armstrong-certified, pro- peel the linear sheet and structural strength and fessional installer for stick the plank in place. If durability. Find Armstrong Luxe Alterna since gluing and you make a mistake, just grouting are usually skills remove the plank and re- and Alterna at one of four beyond the average DIY- apply. You can continue Wayne’s Flooring loca(Sand Island, er. Alterna comes in the moving the planks into tions large format (16 inches- different positions until Kaimuki, Kaneohe or Salt by-16 inches) tiles. the adhesive starts to set. Lake). For more informavisit www.arm If you want a luxury Armstrong’s luxury tion, vinyl floor that’s DIY- vinyl floors are made to

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last, and its vinyl tiles are easy to maintain and can be installed in any room, including bathrooms. Both Luxe Plank and Alterna are made up of three primary layers. The top layer is a protective wear layer that provides resistance to stains,

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ou have to see and feel the luxury vinyl floors at FLOORING Wayne’s Flooring to appreciate them. Alterna friendly, take a closer look vinyl tile is soft and warm at Luxe Plank. You can underfoot, and offers the install Luxe anywhere in most natural and realistic your home, and since you ceramic or stone looks install the planks to each you’ll find anywhere. Luxe Plank luxury vinyl floors also offer highly realistic looks — but do so in hardwood colors and textures. Luxe Plank even comes in authentic plank lengths and widths, with beveled edges and ends. Alterna luxury


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*Dates and locations subject to change. Check for the latest details. JUNE 5, 2011 | HAWAII RENOVATION | 7


Gaining the Seal of Approval S

ealMaster Hawaii is as local as they come. The company first opened its doors in 2003, but its owners — the Moody family — have been in the islands for four generations. Walker-Moody Pavement Products & Equipment, dba SealMaster Hawaii, manufactures its products locally for Hawaii residents. The company

SEALMASTER HAWAII most recognizable names in pavement maintenance throughout the world.

Certified Hawaii Product SealMaster Hawaii’s signature product is MasterSeal Ready-to-Use. It’s a primed asphalt-emulsion pavement sealer fortified with silica sand for added wearability and slip resistance. This product, as well as other company products, is certified by the state Procurement Office and has Hawaii Product Preference. It is made in Hawaii from local materiuses local materials and als, and is especially useful local labor to put its prod- on Hawaii’s roads. ucts on the shelf. Why Sealcoat? SealMaster Hawaii is the The heart of an effective asphalt professional, backed maintenance by its parent company with pavement program is periodic sealmore than 40 years experience, and it has one of the coating with an asphalt

based emulsion pavement sealer. Left untreated, asphalt pavement will deteriorate rapidly. It is made up of asphalt binder and rock. Almost immediately after paving, the asphalt binder combines with oxygen and becomes brittle or oxidized, leading to cracking and weathering soon after installation. Moisture penetrates the An asphalt causing unsealed pavefurther damage ment allows water to penand deterioration etrate into and through to the pavement. Sealcoating (with the pavement structure MasterSeal Ready-to-Use) leading to base erosion, protects against oxidation. and ultimately pavement

failure. Sealcoating provides a protective barrier to stop water penetration. Also if left unsealed, oil and gasoline will soften and deteriorate the exposed asphalt binder. Sealcoating provides a protective barrier that resists attack from oil and gasoline.

Pavement maintenance is simple with the help of SealMaster Hawaii. Do it yourself or use a SealMaster authorized contractor. Talk with a professional at SealMaster Hawaii (839-2782) or visit the company showroom at 2927 Mokumoa St., in Honolulu. You can also call WalkerMoody Construction, an authorized installer, for a free estimate. Asphalt maintenance work for WalkerMoody Construction is now approaching 9 million square feet. Call 839-2781 to talk with a trained professional. An estimator will come out and review your property, measure the asphalt for accuracy, provide recommendations in a formal proposal, and will deliver on-time and on-budget projects. Whether you want a quick fix or a long-term solution, give the companies a call because they fix it all.

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Couple upgrades Mililani home in response to changing lifestyle


ith their mortgage paid off and children moved out of the house, Vince and Audrey Salvador of Mililani decided it was the perfect time to renovate their 30year-old home. After meeting with several construction companies, the Salvadors attended the BIA Home Building and Remodeling Show in January 2010, when they visited Graham Builders’ booth. Impressed with the company’s display, which highlighted new home builds and renovations, the couple decided to attend one of Graham

“Graham Builders’ seminar was very informative and easy to understand,” said Audrey Salvador. “Unlike other seminars that we attended, Graham Builders’ session covered everything, and didn’t leave us feeling up in the air as they clearly defined next steps for us. That’s why we decided to go with Graham Builders.” “Our main goal with the Salvadors’ Builders’ free monthly seminars to learn more home was to open up the about the home construc- kitchen and renovate the bathrooms for accessibilition process. ty,” said Evan Fujimoto,

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company president. The Salvadors entertained often but the existing kitchen was partially enclosed by a wall that created a confined entry area, impeding the flow through the house and preventing the couple from interacting with their guests. Graham Builders knocked down two tall walls and opened up the kitchen to the dining and living rooms, and an island counter was installed to allow for bet-


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ter circulation in and out of the kitchen. “To renovate the bathrooms, we used portions of one of the newly vacated bedrooms as a walk-in closet,” said Keith Kilburn, Graham Builders’ design department manager. “This also gave us the space to enlarge the guest bathroom so that it could accommodate someone in a wheelchair. For the master bathroom, we replaced the existing finishes to give it new life.” “We are very happy with the end results,” said Audrey Salvador. “Graham Builders stuck to their timeline and did exactly what they said they would. There was always someone available to answer questions, and our construction manager was always on top of things the entire time. “Graham Builders was very easy to work with, family-oriented and down

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to earth. We will definitely recommend Graham Builders to other people and will use them again for future home projects.” For more than 20 years Graham Builders, Hawaii’s premier designplus-build firm, has


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How to save big with HydroFlow D

ripping faucets. White spots on shower doors. Clogged showerheads. Lengthy waits for hot water. If these sound familiar, your house may have more than a limescale problem. You could be leaking money. Limescale, also known as “scaling,” is a mineral deposit that accumulates on the inside of pipes and water-using appliances. Left unchecked, these crusty deposits reduce the efficiency and lifespan of solar and electric hot water heaters, dishwashers, washing machines, pool filters and spas. HydroFlow uses a safe, chemical-free process to combat this age-old problem. By emitting randomly varying electric fields, HydroFlow prevents minerals from “sticking” to the inside of pipes so they naturally wash through the system. “If you have to wait for your shower to have hot water, you’re throwing money down the drain,” said Harold von Sydow, director of Nano Tek-






On, which distributes HydroFlow. “Instead of buying a new hot water heater, it’s a lot more affordable and efficient to let HydroFlow clean out your plumbing. One HydroFlow unit protects an entire home and is safe for all pipes. It’s easy to install because you don’t have to cut any pipework.”

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Better to be safe than sorry with lead


own & Country Builders LLC is a licensed general contracting design-build firm that has been serving Oahu residents for the past 30 years, specializing in custom-designed homes, remodels, additions and many other construction activities. Recent modifications and the adaptation of the International Building Code by the city have made it necessary for all building contractors to adjust their methods of construction in order to comply with the latest requirements. That is why it is important to hire a licensed contractor — one that is current on the new standards — to complete your next construction project. In addition to these changes, the state now requires that all renovation, repair and painting contractors pass a written exam and become certified renovators who are knowledgeable

about lead in the home. The presence of lead could be prevalent in all homes constructed prior to 1978 and could pose a danger to your family if not addressed

dren and adults. Children swallow dust during ordinary play activities, and adults swallow or breathe the dust when construction work is performed. Workers


accordingly in the construction process. Why are dust and debris a problem? Renovation activities that disturb lead-based paint create dust and debris. Debris becomes dust, while lead–contaminated dust is poisonous. Very small amounts of lead-contaminated dust can poison chil-

can bring lead-contaminated dust home on their clothes and poison their families. A little dust goes a long way. You can’t see it — only a laboratory test can tell you for sure if an area is contaminated with lead. It’s hard to sweep up, and normal cleaning methods will not pick up the dust in an

area. Sweeping is not enough. You need to use water, detergent and a HEPA vacuum to clean up dust effectively. It travelsonce dust is released, it is easily tracked around, inside and outside the work area. And, an exterior paint job could contaminate the inside of a home as dust, chips and leaded soil are tracked inside. So whether your next big home project involves building a restful covered lanai for the summer, remodeling your kitchen or bathroom, adding a new addition, completing a major renovation, or just repainting your home inside or out, have your walls tested for lead content to be safe. Call Town and Country Builders at 737-7766 for a free in home consultation or visit the company at www.townandcountry


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All-Weather Furniture Done Island-Style


sland Style Furnishings of Kaneohe is the exclusive dealer for Australis Leisure brand all-weather furniture, which was developed in the land down under to withstand the country’s harsh environment. The key to the furniture line’s success has been choosing durable and appealing materials. Merbau wood (also known as kwila) is regarded as one of the most durable and stable timbers in the world. It grows in Northern Australia and across Southeast Asia. It is wellknown as the wood of choice for building docks, decks and flooring. Merbau is the perfect wood for outdoor furniture. It is twice as hard as teak, which makes it resistant to abrasion, pitting or roughening.

joints with cross doweling. This prevents loosening of the components over time. FURNITURE All the hardware is corrosion-resistant 304-grade stainless steel and nickelplated brass. Island Style Furnishings offers competitive pricing and a comprehensive fiveyear warranty. Visit the company during the Home, Garden & Remodeling Show at Blaisdell Exhibition Hall June 10-12, or at the company offices, located at 46-212 Kahuhipa St. Wednesday through Sunday from 11 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. For more information, call 234-1129 or visit the Prior to manufacture, brown tannin, which gives company’s online catalog at merbau is kiln-dried to a it its characteristic color. moisture content of 12 per- This tannin makes the .au. cent. This stabilizes the wood naturally rot-resisstructure of the timber so it tant and insect-proof. The doesn’t warp or crack. The furniture is constructed furniture contains reddish- using mortise and tenon


Free Seminar • How and Where to Start • Find a Reputable Builder • Financing Options • Design for Comfort & Savings • Accessible & Multigeneration Living

Wed., June 22

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plus tax

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Channeling couples toward peace FROM PAGE 2

ing them to cover it at night if they do not have insomnia, is impractical.

Lic# BC-29228

When you and your mate have differing opinions … The big challenge comes when one person loves the television in the bedroom and the other wants it removed. Often I am put in the middle of disagreements and am expected to side with one or the other. How do I handle this? I always allow the couple to come to their own decision and navigate toward the compromise that works best. If the television is staying in the room, and it is an issue between the cou- headple, here are questions I ask set so the sound does not disturb the other? them: • Can the sleeper wear • Can you purchase a tel- eyeshades to block out the evision cabinet with doors light activity that may prevent them from falling so that it is out of sight? • Can you cover it with a asleep sooner? cloth? It is never easy when we • Can you mutually agree upon an earlier time to turn are at odds with our partners, especially when we it off? • Can the watcher wear a firmly believe our way is


E. W. right. Sometimes the one who is bothered by the television will just “put up with it,” which leads to a build-up of resentment over time. It’s important to realize that the feelings of both parties are valid and neither is right nor wrong. If the television is an issue for you and your part-

ner, take the time to discuss how you can find a happy medium. If not, may you continue to sleep in peace!

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Making Your Way Through the Flooring Wilderness


f there is one thing for sure about flooring in Hawaii, it is that the market is very competitive, and even when you narrow it down, there are a multitude of products and installers to choose from. Then you have salespeople, many of them with very poor product knowledge, coming at you with confusing facts and figures, and pressuring you to buy. It’s enough to make a person say, “The heck with this! I’ll gladly stick with my 20-year-old carpet for a little longer!” But there is help. If you are building new, remodeling or just freshening up, Shirley Pai Hilton of Pacific Imports International would like to help you with some unbiased information on products and installation so that you can make the most informative choice. Hilton says the first thing to remember is to always buy quality in your


price range. The old adage of getting what you pay for applies doubly in a competitive market. Vendors will try to get your attention and money by offering an amazingly low price, but that’s because they didn’t pay much for it either. Hardiness and longevi-

ty are usually what’s sacrificed when one is looking for a floor, but what good does it do if you have to buy another floor in just a few years? No one is saying to purchase a real wood floor when you can’t afford it, but you should shop for a quality laminate to give you years of satisfaction. So what should homeowners do?

customer service is usually not one of the listed contractual obligations. Additionally, find out about the owners’ backgrounds. The Better Business Bureau is one place to start. You can also do your own costfree sleuthing with a quick check on Google or Hoohiki. It is also interesting to note that knowledgeable salespeople are a direct reflection of the company’s openness and attention to detail. That perFor starters, seek out son should be able to long warranties on mate- offer you good informarials, preferably around 25 tion that will help you years. For another, look make an informed decifor integrity with the sion. Always walk away company you are dealing from high-pressuring, with. You may have a badgering-type salespeowritten contract, but good ple who call or text you

incessantly. They definitely don’t have your best interests at heart. Hilton recommends that before venturing out into the Hawaii flooring forest, homeowners should get a basic education on flooring by attending her Wood and Stone Flooring 101 seminar, now held monthly because of popular demand. The 90-minute session will give you the tools to begin chopping through that forest and really seeing the trees (no pun intended). Pacific Imports’ next seminar will be held Saturday, June 18 at 10 a.m. at the company showroom, located at 926 Kohou St. Call 847-7711 to reserve a seat.

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Royal Kunia residents feel electric,

thanks to solar company BY JOHN EMERY


few months ago, I was discussing plumbing options with a homeowner in Royal Kunia for a remodeling project that was about to begin. My company, Waialae Plumbing, would be handling just the plumbing for the job. The homeowner, general contractor and I were at the meeting when the homeowner mentioned that they were looking to put solar PV panels on their roof. Not wanting to step on the toes of the general contractor, I did not say anything. The next day, I asked the general contractor if it would be OK to talk to the homeowner about his solar needs. I explained to him that I had started a new division within my company, EnergyPro Hawaii, to focus on the seemingly endless energy-specific solutions, such as solar hot

water, solar PV, solar attic fans, tankless gas water heaters and even variable speed pumps for high rises. EnergyPro Hawaii seemed like a natural extension of my company after the addition 16 | HAWAII RENOVATION | JUNE 5, 2011

of a general contracting classification and the start up of our electrical division, Waialae Electric. The general contractor

percent of residential PV systems. We were so fond of these products that out-produced all other systems that we nicknamed our system the “Perfect Match.” After explaining the system to our customer and showing him how the system can be monitored

gave me his blessing to talk to the homeowner about the PV system. We had done a lot of research in-house and decided that the matchup of Sanyo PV panels and Enphase micro-inverters were the best product available for 90

online, which allowed us to show a side-byside comparison with one of our competitor’s systems, the homeowner was sold. As is often the case, the neighbors in Royal Kunia Community were curious to see what was going on to learn more about the product. This gave us the opportunity to show off some of the finer aspects of our installations. We use thicker racking to keep the panels high off the roof so that they stay cool and work more efficiently. We also install electrical sub-panels to ensure safety. We also design the system so that it can allow for expansion in the future.


To date, we are in the process of installing four separate systems on the same street in the Royal Kunia Community, consisting of more than 70 panels and the possibility of adding additional panels to their systems in the future. We also are in the process of designing a system for the residence of the general contractor, who was instrumental in getting us “in the door” of this neighborhood. You can be sure that he will receive the best pricing possible as a thank you! EnergyPro Hawaii is approach-

ing its first anniversary, and we have installed more than 40 solar PV systems that have produced more than 100 megawatt hours of power, along with many solar hot water systems and attic fans. Our numbers may not be as big as some of the “big boys,” which is fine by me. Instead, we focus on our customers and providing them with the best product available. The EnergyPro Hawaii division might only be turning 1, but we have been in business for more than 17 years and plan to be around for a long time. If EnergyPro Hawaii can help you with solar PV or any other product, call us at 596-2890.


Hawaii Renovation 5 June 2011  

Hawaii Renovation 5 June 2011