American Standard faucet

What goes on behind the closed curtain?

1016.2367.h-AmStd_Art_of_Bathing_Survey_Infographic-highTaking selfies while you’re soaking in the suds? Really?

At Finken Plumbing, Heating, Cooling and Water Treatment, we’re pretty into what people want in their bathrooms. It’s our job. The finest faucets, the sweetest showers, the tidiest toilets, we’re on it!

But our friends at American Standard plumbing products wanted to know a little more about what we really enjoy about our bathrooms. They were looking for innovative product ideas, but they found out a little bit more than they bargained for.

They talked to 1200 people between the ages of 18-65 and here’s what they discovered:

  1. People take selfies in the shower more than once a week. Almost 60-percent of us. Cheesse!
  2. People pee in the shower. Efficient I guess. How about giving one of our nice toilets a try?
  3. Cleaning the shower naked. Well it’s not like you’re going to take a shower with your clothes on so we say scrub away!
  4. Singing in the shower is nothing new but almost 90% more shower-ers yodel their cares away than bathers.
  5. One out of four of us sneaky snoops help ourselves to other people’s personal products when we are using their bathrooms.
  6. Is it really “smart” to use your smartphone in the bathtub? I guess we’re willing to risk it because lots of us do it. So much for going off the grid even long enough to take a simple soak.
  7. Sleep tight. ¼ of us can’t go to sleep until we’ve had our soothing shower or bath.
  8. More than half of us, whether we’re shower-ers or bathers, forget our shampoo, razor or something else that we intended to bring with us into the shower.

For more details on the survey results and activities, visit the interactive Art of Bathing website.

To learn more about bathing and showering products from Finken Plumbing, Heating and Cooling, visit www.finkens.com or call (320) 258-2005.

Bad Habit Brewing Co Logo

Bad Habit Makes Good Beer

The best beer starts with perfect water, from Finken of course.

Bad Habit Brewing Co  in  St. Joseph, MN

Bad Habit Brewery in downtown St. Joseph makes beer out of tap water.

Hard tap water.

Sound like a tough place to start when you’re making beer this good? Well, it is. If you’d leave it that way. But at Bad Habit, they use carbon filtration from Finken Water Solutions which helps them turn tap water into the perfect water for beer brewing.

The Finken carbon filtration system filters the water but leaves behind some trace minerals, such as calcium and sodium, which you do want in good beer. The system then removes the chemicals in the water, such as chlorine, which you clearly don’t want in your water – especially not in your beer!

Tap Room at Bad Habit Brewing Co in St. Joseph, MNDon’t get us wrong, there’s nothing really bad about city water. Cities work hard to make their water safe and drinkable, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s pure. For one thing, it’s still hard. Hard water is just water that has minerals like magnesium and sulfate from the earth still in it. It won’t hurt you, in fact some people like the taste. If it’s too mineral-rich over too much time however, it can gunk up your appliances, get stuck in your hair and on your skin, and coat the insides of your pipes and water heater with a whitish almost calcified collection of hardened gunk. But actually, when it comes to making beer, a few trace minerals are not such a bad thing. Those natural minerals, in certain quantities, can taste pretty good and are essential to the flavor profiles of beer. There are six main water ion components that need to be balanced when brewing beer: Carbonate, Sodium, Chloride, Sulfate, Calcium and Magnesium. Bad Habit’s new filtration system from Finken helps monitor the ion and hardness levels in the water that they use in order to brew the perfect beer.

It does help that Bad Habit Brewery’s owner is Finken Water Solutions’ own water expert, Aaron Rieland. A commercial and residential water treatment specialist for more than a decade, Aaron knows his water as well as he knows his beer. “Water is obviously the primary component of beer,” Aaron said, “If you don’t have balanced water, you don’t have good beer.”

Taps at Bad Habit Brewing Co in St. Joseph, MNIn addition to the filtration products, Finken supplied Bad Habit with all new plumbing to supply the brewers, bar and spankin’ new sinks, ran a trench down the center of the brew area floor, installed a tankless water heater, ran all the glycol refrigerant lines, installed all new ductwork and class A super heat-proof venting for the brewers and fired up the monster walk-in chiller.

“It turned out really great,” Aaron said. “We wanted an atmosphere that is comfortable and casual and our climate control in here will be really great even when the brewers are cooking.”

Rolling Ridge Wedding and Event Center

Rolling Ridge Renovation

119 year old barn at Rolling Ridge Wedding and Event CenterFinken Plumbing, Heating and Cooling had the honor of being part of a unique barn-raising of sorts this summer at our neighbors down the road, Rolling Ridge Wedding and Event Center. Also the home of Scenic Specialties landscaping, the Rolling Ridge Wedding and Event Center is situated on a picturesque 14-acre woodland in St. Joseph, MN and is comprised of three major structures, one of which is the historic 119-year-old barn.

 

“We were involved from the planning phase,” said Mike Blaskowski, Finken Plumbing and HVAC Manager. “Our actual hands-on work got underway at the end of June and we wrapped up the project on September 28.” The biggest challenge the team faced was in the timber framed barn where they needed to incorporate all the plumbing amenities and climate comfort of a modern structure, but maintain the rustic integrity and appearance of the 1896 building. “We were careful to conceal as much of our systems as possible,” Mike said. All of the plumbing and ductwork was run through the basement, and there are both interior and secondary exterior walls in the barn so the air returns could be run inside the cavity. “I’ve never seen that before,” said Jesse Moulzolf, one of Finken’s HVAC techs on the project, “The runs are all boxed in so you can’t even tell they are there from the inside or the outside.” Even the thermostats are tucked behind logs so they can’t be seen.

Private bridal suite inside Roling Ridge Wedding and Event Center

In addition to the overall plumbing and ventilation of the fully-renovated buildings, Finken installed seven commercial-grade, 2-stage, 95-percent efficient variable speed gas Frigidaire furnaces and seven 13-SEER (seasonal energy efficiency rating) commercial-grade Frigidaire air conditioners to completely climate control the two main buildings on site. Finken also installed fixtures for the catering kitchen, bridal suite and roosters roost wedding party prep rooms, multiple pressurized power flush toilets, urinals and stainless steel faucets, a twin alternating water softener and two water heaters; a 96-percent efficient commercial-grade gas water heater plus an on-demand water heater unit.

 

Frigidaire A/CJesse, who has been an HVAC technician at Finken for almost 11 years said, “This is one of the most interesting projects I’ve ever done. For one thing, there is a 1½-inch inch main gas line supplying the site. That’s one of the largest gas line we’ve ever installed.” That hefty line is necessary to power the 1.3 million BTUs generated by the seven furnaces. Finken also ran the gas line for the outdoor grill and fireplace. Another challenge the crew ran into was keeping the ductwork level in the barn. “Because it is an older structure made with rough-cut lumber, there were not very many square corners to work with,” Jesse said, “So we had to work a little creatively to suspend and balance the ductwork properly.”

 

Finken also had a hand in the structure’s new fire prevention measures. “We installed 6 fire dampeners, which are essentially mechanisms that prevent fire and smoke from spreading through the ductwork and penetrating the walls in the event that there would be a fire,” Jesse said.

When Jesse was doing a compressed air test to make sure the gas lines were safe and tight, he discovered a previously installed gas line that had become corroded and could have potentially caused a major malfunction in the gas system. “Randy was pretty happy that we found and fixed that!” he said.

Randy Schmitz, owner of Rolling Ridge, is very happy with his choice to use Finken on the project. “We chose Finken because we wanted to work with a local contractor that was willing and capable of designing and installing an efficient system that blended with the unique architectural value of our historic building,” he said, “It was important to have someone local so we could get quick service if we found ourselves in a pinch.  Jesse, Aaron, Steve, Mike & Tom did an excellent job achieving our goals on our exciting yet complicated project.  The work was neat and orderly and I’m very happy.”

“We worked hard to meet his deadlines and specifications,” Jesse said, “We wanted it to be perfect.”

Caribou Coffee has partnered with Finken to bring you great tasting coffee.

Finken has partnered with Caribou Coffee!

What’s the secret of a fabulous cup of coffee? The water of course! Finken Water Solutions was recently selected by Caribou Coffee to update and modify the water treatment systems in all Caribou Coffee retails stores to ensure their water, and therefore all of their coffee, is consistently delicious.

Over the past few months, the Finken team has been installing Hellenbrand Water Treatment systems and Nimbus reverse osmosis systems in select Twin Cities Caribou Coffee locations. The water softeners remove the hardness and impurities from the water, which helps with the taste of the coffee, but also preserves the integrity of each store’s equipment. It helps ensure faucets, sinks, ovens, counter tops, serving and prep areas are sparkling clean. The reverse osmosis system has membranes that filter out chemicals, medications and tiny pollutants that may alter taste.

The Finken Water Solutions team completes the installations during overnight shifts to avoid business interruption. Our goal is to complete two stores per evening and then ten stores per week. The first phase of the project began in February 2015 and included 82 central Minnesota locations. Future phases will roll out throughout the year with final completion of existing locations by the spring of 2016. Finken is also supporting all new retail store openings. Finken Water Solutions is happy to partner with Caribou Coffee to deliver consistently pure and delicious coffee!