Next up was appliances. For no particular reason, this was one of the things that was first researched when the project began. After a good bit of time online and looking at the lables inside appliances, Whirlpool was selected for all the home’s appliances (kitchen and laundry). We found many pieces from other manufacturers that were US made, but Whirlpool offered the most domestic made pieces in a full set. One encouraging note was that we found that many manufacturers were in the process of bring their manufacturing BACK to the USA.
Without a doubt, one of the biggest challenges of building an American Made home is ceiling fans. Every fan in every aisle in every store is foreign made. We looked for many months. The Matthews Fan Company has a fan that qualifies according to the Buy American Act but really didn’t fit the style of the home.
So, we then were informed of the Big Ass Fan company, located in Lexington, KY. Big Ass Fans gets their name from building, well, very large fans… for residences and businesses. However, the Build the USA home is simply not large enough for one of their fans.
I spoke with Jessica at BAF who then told me about their Haiku line of fans, a smaller fan much more in line with the style of the home. Haiku fans are extremely energy efficient (80% more efficient that standard fan) and are made from the highest quality materials to ensure they will never droop or flex (the fans come with a limited lifetime warranty). Haiku fans are extremely quiet and have 7 speeds, a ‘Whoosh mode’ and a sleep timer.
The installation was simple (especially because the electricians installed them, not me). I then stopped by during lunch after the install. Awesome. They are so very cool. I’ve never seen anything like them.
According to a BAF representative, some components come from Malaysia, but the fans are then made in Lexington, KY.
We look forward to shooting the breeze under these fans for many years to come.
The countertops in the Build the USA home are complete! We had a few challenges in this area. In our current home, we have tile countertops which are very durable. However, since there is so much tile in the great room of the new home, we decided to go with a non-tile solution.
Most all granite comes from foreign sources and most synthetic products had what we felt were drawbacks. So, after much research, we decided on a quartz top, and ultimately chose the Made-in-the-USA LG Hausys Vitera line.
Stone Crazy in Orlando, FL handled the install and they were great to deal with; on time, precise, and affordable. We thank them for the great job they did.
Throughout this process, I’ve received many emails asking about light bulbs. Many people have said there are no light bulbs made in the USA. If you were to go to any big box store, they would be right, but the internet would (thankfully) prove them wrong.
Finally, the time came to focus on light… and bulbs. I scoured the aisles at Home Depot, Lowes, Walmart & Ace Hardware. No luck. Amazing, I thought. And sad. I couldn’t find a single American made light bulb at any of them. Then, I hopped online and went to work. After just a few minutes, I was in luck. It wasn’t impossible after all. In fact, it was quite simple. The Aero-Tech Light Bulb Company manufactures a wide range of light bulbs, much of them made in the USA.
One thing I’ve learned thoughout this process is that sometimes patience is necessary to purchase American-made. If you go to the store and need something immediately, you might be out of luck. But if you plan ahead, and do a little research, you just might find what you are looking for.
The bedroom flooring for the Build the USA home is complete, thanks to Anderson for their made in the USA hickory flooring… and to my father for dedicating 4 days to help install them… and to my mother for helping to make them look move-in ready after we made a big mess. I hope I have that much energy years from now. Truly amazing. And generous. Thank you!!!
Tony Stark, move over. Meet Boris Petkov of Boris Petkoff Custom Iron Work. The stair railing was just installed in the Build the USA home and I was fortunate to be able to watch the installation. The custom made railing (made in Orlando, FL), was brought to the home and assembled on site. Boris was meticulous and the railing looks so good, he is going to make a custom coffee table to match.
In the early stages of this project, we chose American Standard for our toilets and bathroom sinks. However, as the project progressed and as further research was done, we learned that most of American Standard’s products are manufactured outside of the US. So, we dug further, sticking with our goal of supporting American manufacturing. We then found a company called Mansfield. Mansfield manufactures top quality, high design, performance plumbing fixtures and fittings. The good news is they manufacture a large number of these products in the USA, specifically Perrysville, Ohio; Big Prairie, Ohio; and Henderson, Texas.
Mansfield dedicates a portion of their website to their ‘Made in the USA’ products. That can be found here.
FYI… we chose Mansfield for our toilets and pedestal sink. They were installed over the past few days and look great! Thank you Mansfield for 500 American jobs at your US plants.
Thanks also to KLM Plumbing for all their efforts. They went above and beyond doing research on their end to ensure products used were American made. The install looks great and we can’t thank them enough for the great job that they did.
Pavers were delivered today to the Build the USA home. The pavers are manufactured (in Florida) by Flagstone Pavers and installed by Atlantic Stonework and Sealing. The color is Camel/Charcoal. More information will be posted once the installation is complete.
American-made products mean American jobs, and this country certainly needs jobs. So, when we chose to build a new home, we decided to use as many American-made products as possible. By doing so, we would be doing a small part to build the USA.