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Friday, September 30, 2016

Clever Care and Cleaning of Your Outdoor Furniture

As the colder weather closes in, you might not be planning to use your backyard as often as in the summer. There could still be time to fit in a few more BBQs, but you won't be able to enjoy the space forever. As you get it ready for fall and winter, make sure you turn your attention to your outdoor furniture. Even though it's designed to live outside, you still need to care for it if you want it to stay in good condition. There are several things you might need to do, depending on what your furniture is made of. It could need cleaning, varnishing, covering, or even putting away inside. Make sure you keep your outdoor furniture in good condition with these tips.


Cleaning

How you tackle the job of cleaning your outdoor furniture will depend on the material. Some materials are more delicate, so you don't want to be too harsh with them. If you're washing metal furniture, or perhaps items made from resin, you can use a quality power washer. Power washers make it easier to tackle large items of furniture without having to scrub by hand. If you wash metal items with a pressure washer, keep it on a low setting. Remember that it's not suitable for some parts too, such as glass table tops. With wood and rattan furniture, it's better to tackle the cleaning with soapy water and a sponge. You may even wish to sand wooden items to get them really clean.

Protective Treatments

Protecting your outdoor furniture will help it to last longer. There are different things you can do depending on your furniture. If you have wooden items, you might want to use a wood preserver or other protective treatment. Before you get started, make sure the furniture is clean and that the weather is appropriate. Don't try to apply the treatment when it's too hot, cold or wet. You need to sand the surface lightly before you apply your first coat of the treatment. It's a good idea to do this every year for your wooden furniture. If you have metal furniture, you may need to prevent rust. Steel items can rust, but you can apply a treatment to help stop it. Painting will help to keep rust away, and you can polish metal furniture with wax.

Refreshing Your Furniture

Sometimes you might need to perk up your outdoor furniture. Even if you've been caring for it, it can go downhill and look a little worse for wear. If you want to refresh your wooden furniture, you might choose to apply a stained oil after sanding it down. Another option is to apply a coat of paint or two. You could choose any color you want if you want to do something more interesting. Paint can help to protect your furniture too. Painting is also an option for metal furniture for both protecting it and giving it a new look.


Covering Up

Covering your outdoor furniture is a good idea if you want to make it more weatherproof. Some materials, such as rattan and resin, and already very resistant to the weather. However, anything from the sun to snow and rain could affect the look of your furniture. A simple protective cover can offer shelter from the sun and rain. You can get them large enough to stretch over dining sets or designed to fit snuggly on parasols. They're ideal for covering up any furniture with cushions, such as sofas and armchairs. Just make sure you tie the covers down so that the wind doesn't remove them. It's a good idea to make sure they have good ventilation too. Otherwise, condensation could gather underneath the cover.

When to Store Outdoor Furniture

Sometimes it's best to put your outdoor furniture away, rather than leave it outside all year. It could depend on the material; for example, you might want to store aluminum furniture during the winter. However, on other occasions, you will need to consider the weather in your area. If you're expecting storms or hurricanes, leaving your furniture outside might not be the smartest idea. You also might just find it easier to store your furniture, instead of applying protective treatments or anything else. You can use your garage, basement, shed or any other spare space. However, make sure that the furniture is well-protected during storage too.

Keep your outdoor furniture looking fantastic and in great condition with regular maintenance. It will last longer if you take time to look after it.

Hello, This Is Your Dog. Can We Talk?

Hi there, my name's Random Dog. I'm kind of all dogs; the joint consciousness of all of your furry friends. Let's call me Rover. Maybe I look like this:




Or perhaps something a bit less scary?




Or, most likely, you imagine me as a dog from your life. Just know I absolutely, and with total authority, speak for all dogs.

Now, this whole "being domesticated" thing has gone pretty well for us dogs. There's still a little wolf left in us all - show me a squirrel, and I'll show you just how much wolf DNA I've still got. I can totally take it. I won't just bark at it and then look confused. No rat with a fluffy tail is going to beat me (unless I get distracted, or you have food, or the sun is in my eyes or something).

But I digress. So the domestic thing: it's good. You give us food, which we somehow have to sit for because this pleases you. Why is your call; we assume there's a reason? Can you let us in on that sometime? Anyway, you also groom us, pet us and everything is generally great.

There is a big old 'but' coming, though. There are some things we're not so keen on. Sure, there might be some who think the things below are fine. Maybe they're reincarnated cats: who knows what those creatures are thinking.

You Shout At Us When We're Not Behaving

Look, we don't get this. We do something wrong, and you tell us off for it. Maybe that works on human kids, but it doesn't on us. Most of the time, we don't even know why we're being told off. And if you're shouting at us because we're barking, that's just... why are you even doing that? You make loud noise to tell us to stop making loud noise? It's confusing. We respond best to positive reinforcement when we're doing the stuff you do want us to do.

You Don't Think About Costs

I'm no cheap pup. I'm a member of the family, and you're going to have to spend some cash on me. If I get sick, I need you to fix it. I don't care how you do it, but you have this responsibility, and I promise I won't bite the vet. Sort out some pet insurance and all is well. I can focus on getting those squirrels now.

You Dress Us Up

Okay, one minute of a spaniel in a sombrero is hilarious. A little coat that small dogs wear when it's winter is also okay. Anything that’s for medical reasons? Sure, fine. But don't dress us up like a bee or a famous figure from history. It's uncomfortable. We don't like it - you like it. We like punishing those squirrels, which I am going to get on any minute now.

You Don't Give Us Things To Chew On

I'm a dog. I want to chew things. It makes me happy, and you have overreacted about the damage done to those shoes. No, I don't know what "vintage" means. Or "extortionately expensive". Calm down. I'm going to want to chew, and if I don't have anything, yeah, I think your shoes are a good option. Want me to chew something else? You're going to need to get me something else. Maybe a squirrel? Which I will totally get, right now. Just watch me.

... I'll do it later. Definitely.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Baby, Baby! A Mirror Book



Hey neighbors!

I was given the opportunity to review a really cute board book for infants and toddlers.  A simple and sweet little book to share with your young one. called Baby, Baby! by Diane Stortz.  The book is illustrated by Ailie Busby. ($7.99)


Colorful pictures of babies to hold your little one's attention.  Each page has a few words, or a short sentence to read to your child.  At the end of the book is a mirror so your baby can see themselves.  The last couple pages discuss how God loves your little one, with a Bible verse from the NKJV on the last page.


This would make a great little gift for a toddler or even to put in a gift basket for an expectant mom.  Board books are great for toddlers to carry around and have read to them.  If you are interested in purchasing a copy, go here: http://tinyurl.com/zglnavk

One neighbor will be able to win a copy of Baby, Baby! in this giveaway!


“Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255:  “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”):  Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway.  Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation.  I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post.

Only one entrant per mailing address, per giveaway.  If you have won a prize from our sponsor Propeller /FlyBy Promotions in the last 30 days, you are not eligible to win.  Or if you have won the same prize on another blog, you are not eligible to win it again.  Winner is subject to eligibility verification.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Heirloom Audio Productions : The Cat of Bubastes

Hey neighbors!

My family has recently been  reviewing The Cat of Bubastes by Heirloom Audio Productions!  If you are a regular reader, you know that we have reviewed other Heirloom Audio Productions audio dramas over the past couple of years.  They are so entertaining and riveting!  Best of all is they teach Christian values and morals.  Be sure to look at the other reviews we have done when you have completed reading this one... such as With Lee in Virginia, The Dragon and the Raven, and In Freedom's Cause.  And yes, all of them are great!

Heirloom Audio Productions ~Cat of Bubastes

I highly recommend to everyone, the audio programs we have from Heirloom Audio Productions.  Heirloom Audio Productions creates quality audio dramas with many known actors and actresses who give the characters voices. and bring them to life  Brian Blessed, Anthony Daniels, Elizabeth Counsell and John Rhys-Davies are just a few of the names of the actors and actresses of this Christian audio drama.  The CD set is dramatized and truly holds listeners attention as the story unfolds.  My daughters love to listen to these as they go to bed, although I often have to encourage them to finally turn them off and go to sleep.

The Cat of Bubastes, based on a G. A. Henty story, is perfect for bedtime listening, car trips, homeschooling and just when you might need some quiet time.  When you order the 2 CD set you will receive several different free downloads.  One is for you to print and display, it is the printable verse from 1 Chronicles 17:20.  There is also a downloadable 47 page study guide, which you can print off.  The study guide will allow you to explore the story more in depth with your family.  There are questions for discussion, history learning guides and a story related Bible study.  Another great benefit is a download of the soundtrack for The Cat of Bubastes.  So not only do you receive a wonderful Christian audio drama, but you receive lots of extras.  They also have specials if you decide to purchase in bulk.  When you purchase the special 4 pack, you receive a few more freebies.  Remember, with the holidays fast approaching these will make great gifts.


Heirloom Audio Productions ~Cat of Bubastes

The Cat of Bubastes is 2 hours of adventure and learning fun.  The tale takes place in Egypt, with a young prince Amuba and his friend and mentor Jethro.  As they are captured together and become slaves, they experience many trials and tests they learn of God and His providence.  I won't share much, because I wouldn't want to give anything away.  All I will say is you will enjoy this audio book!

Be sure to follow them on their Social Media:
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/HeirloomAudio
Twitter: https://twitter.com/HeirloomStories 
Google+: https://plus.google.com/b/114534826166314080647/114534826166314080647  
Instagram: @HeirloomAudioOfficial 

Thanks for stopping by today.  And remember to take a moment and be sure to read what other Homeschool Review Crew members had to say about The Cat of Bubastes by clicking on the link below.

Heirloom Audio Productions ~Cat of Bubastes


Crew Disclaimer

Lilla Rose Hair Accessories



Hey neighbors!

A dear friend of ours, Abbie, is a Lilla Rose consultant.  She offered us the opportunity to try out one of the Lilla Rose hair accessories.  We chose a pair of the hair sticks.  Not only are they beautiful, they are well made and look great!
My younger daughter would enjoy these whimsical ladybugs.




Lilla Rose is set up so individuals can have their own business, at their own convenience.  A Lilla Rose consultant can do book parties, online parties, in home parties, or just sell to individuals.  It is so easy to get started.  There is one plan that starts at $50.  You can find out more about the business opportunity HERE.  And the hair accessories are pretty reasonably priced, so they sell themselves!

She did a roll in this one.



Mercy loves wearing hair sticks, so I partially chose these for her.  The sticks are $8 for a single stick or $15 for a pair..  We chose the Heart set.  The hearts on the top of the stick have a beautiful etched pattern and are finished in antiqued nickel.  They are beautiful!  The stick is a sturdy, dark wood, that tapers at the end.

We did a messy bun for this one!




Now, Hair Sticks are not the only products from Lilla Rose.  They have clips, hair bands, bobbies, u-clips and many others.  They have a wide variety of styles too, so I am sure they will have something you will want.

These would go with my puppy paw earrings.


My oldest daughter would LOVE these!

So, if you are interested in becoming a Lilla Rose rep, or even hosting an online party be sure to contact Abbie on her Lilla Rose site and she will be more than happy to help you!  I may even host an online party and invite all of you!

Thanks for stopping in!  See you all soon!

The Dieter's Dilemma: What To Wear While Weight Is Waning?

While weight loss is constantly seen as a source of aggravation, frustration and helplessness - it also works. Whether you have just hit on the right diet plan or found an exercise regime that is making your figure more slender, things do begin to change. No one is saying that it's easy or doesn't require a huge amount of sacrifice - but the rewards are always going to be worth it.  

It's not a quick process, though - which is a good thing. Most of us know that crash dieting doesn't work and pounds lost will still be regained, sometimes with interest. So the fact it's taking awhile is a good thing; and you know it should take awhile longer before you reach your goal.

There's just one problem: your clothes don't fit you anymore.

When clothes become too loose, they can begin to look ridiculous. You can give the appearance of a child dressed up after raiding their parents’ closets rather than a functioning adult, a look most of us try to avoid. At this point, you are faced with the Dieter's Dilemma.

Option One: Buy New Clothes

It's probably something you have savored, the moment when you've lost weight and can drop down a few sizes. You have thought long and hard about the fashions you're going to have available to you, the styles your new figure can handle.

So, it's really not much of a choice? Go shopping! Use your credit card until it burns!


Except... you still have more weight to lose. So that means, all being well, these new clothes that you purchase will in time become too loose also. It's investing a lot of money in something you don't even want to wear for long - you can't lie to yourself and say it's worth the investment.

Option Two: You Do Nothing

So you don't want to be trapped into spending money on things that are going to soon be dismissed to the "too big" pile. But this isn't really an option, as you still have the problem of your existing clothes not fitting. So what to do?

The Solution: Spend Money Wisely


For awhile, you might have to put your high fashion aspirations to one side and focus on clothes that can change as your figure does. This is not the time to be buying fitted, tailored garments - you'll get to that point, but not yet.

For casual clothes, go for yoga capris or anything with a drawstring waist, which can be cinched in as you lose more weight. Men’s style shirts are meant to be worn loose, so utilize their flexibility.

For professional attire, it's a little more difficult. Dresses with a stretch fabric are helpful, but the real saviors are wraparound dresses. They'll fit in the moment, and can then just be wrapped tighter - perhaps with a little at-home sewing - as you begin to lose the pounds.

Finally, both categories benefit from opting for patterns and prints over solid colors. Solid colors can make it more obvious if the clothes are too baggy due to their crisp, clean lines, whereas prints help to break things up.

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Funky Fun Gifts To Put Joy Into The Holidays

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Photo source: Unsplash.com

As the holiday season starts creeping up on us again, it’s time to start thinking about making a Christmas gift list. Funnily enough, something that is intended to spark so much joy can also sometimes bring a lot of stress! So instead of focusing on the big gifts you might be buying this year (which are usually much more tailored to the person) we’re going to take a look at some of the affordable fun and gifts that will put spirit into the holidays.

Secret Sisters And Stocking Fillers

These types of gifts should be silly, fun and cute. For the kids, you can include brightly colored stationary that they can use for school and cute post-it notes and paper clips to keep them organized. For girls add in some pretty hair bands, hair ties, and lip balm. And for boys, you can go for shoe polish, hair gel and phone credit. For tasty treats don’t forget those all-important classic Christmas gold chocolate coins! Secret Sisters is always a tricky one as you’re never sure who you’re going to get or how well you know them. Christmas themed socks are always a fun gift. As are cute slippers or hand soaps. If you really want to get into the holiday spirit why not go for fun Christmas ornaments that they can hang on their tree when they get home? You can get everything from snowboarding Penguins to hockey playing snowmen. It’s a silly gift but one that can help decorate the Christmas tree!

Grandpa And Grandma

What to buy the grandparents? They will probably just appreciate your company and want nothing more than kisses, cuddles, and a great Christmas dinner. But if you want to buy something, why not go for gifts that are fun and funky that will bring some laughter? We love the idea of buying grandpa or grandma a mini back scratcher. It’s silly but useful and perfect for those hard to reach itches! Hand soaps, jellies, sweeties and handkerchiefs always go down with grandparents too. If you want, you can also get your kids to create some homemade gifts such as a spectacle case, a pin cushion, a tissue holder or a mobile phone fabric case. Handmade gifts are thoughtful and always cherished by grandparents.          

Dad

I always think dads are more difficult to buy for than moms. Short of splashing out on swish new golf clubs, or pilot lessons, most of their gifts are costly manly things! So why not go silly and make them laugh this holiday season instead? Men like to be boys at Christmas so you could choose some boys toys that will provide hours of fun. One of the best gadgets for this Christmas is the mini drone which will keep him occupied for most of the afternoon. The kids could get him a Rubik’s Cube or a travel set compendium of games such as chess, backgammon, and draughts. For all the family why not go for Scrabble or a new twister board so that everyone can join in the games! Grandparents are optional on this one depending on their flexibility!

Monday, September 26, 2016

Looking For a Home Manicure and Pedicure Set?



Hey neighbors!

How many of you pay to have a manicure or pedicure?  How much do you put out per year on your nails?  What if you could save by doing it yourself at home?  Well, Utilyze has a really nice manicure and pedicure set available on Amazon.  Wait until I tell you all about it.



The set arrives in a nice white zippered carry case.  When you open it up you will find everything you need to give yourself beautiful nails.  Well, you will have to add your own nail color.  First you have the handheld machine itself.  The plug is separate and attaches at the end to power your unit.  The nice thing is you have buttons to adjust to the speed you desire.  Ever had one that went too fast or too slow?  Well with the progressive 10 speed motor, you can get a speed you like.  Next are the seven different attachments.  Each attachment is for a specific purpose.



Attachments:
Sapphire Callus Sander - Removes calluses on feet and hands, also can shape nails
Felt Polishing Cone - Polishes nails when you are done, leaving them nice and shiny, can also be used to remove cuticles.
Cylindrical Milling Cutter - Can be used to treat ingrown toenails. (See directions.)
Flame Milling Cutter - Remove corners of nails, etc. you need a smaller tip to work with. (Use carefully)
Fine Sapphire Shaping Disc - Use to shorten and shape nails.
Rough Sapphire Shaping Disc - Use to shorten and shape nails.
Sapphire Cone - Removes hard skin, especially on feet.





There is also a small plastic shield that is removable, along with a detachable bright cold LED light.  The light really helps you to see what you are doing.  Helpful for people like me who have trouble seeing up close.




The unit is so easy to use.  Choose the attachment that you want to use and pop it in the end.  Turn on the unit with the button on the side and then adjust your speed by tapping the glowing + and - lights.  This will increase and decrease your speed.  The other light below these will change the direction your attachment is spinning in.  You have complete control.  Here is a deciding factor for me, if you apply too much pressure, it shuts off by itself.  This makes it safe for diabetics when used properly.

This product would save you having to make appointments and go to get your nails done.  It would also save you money after the initial output to purchase the Utilize Home Manicure and Pedicure Set.

Thanks for stopping by today!  Look forward to seeing you soon.

This is a sponsored post.  I received this product for free for my HONEST opinion in review.


Saturday, September 24, 2016

Fall Scents for the Home from Root Candles! #FallFinds


Fall is, without a doubt, my favorite season. The flavors, colors, weather, and of course the scents of fall are all amazing. M has been doing a lot of fall decorating in the house the past week or so, and one way we've been doing this is with fall-scented candles. Root Candles sent us two of their most popular scents, the Cinnamon Spice and Pumpkin Spice, and we immediately fell in love with the wonderful fragrances.


Root Candles offers natural beeswax candles, available in a variety of sizes and scents. The Cinnamon Spice candle is the essence of fall baking scents. Cinnamon is blended with clove, sugar, caramel and vanilla. The resulting scent is like all the best autumnal baked goods in one delicious fragrance!

The Pumpkin Spice candle combines clove, ginger and pumpkin puree with hints of brown sugar, vanilla creme, and musk. When you light this candle, the room will soon smell like you have a homemade pumpkin pie in the oven!



If you're like me, you have burned a lot of candles in the search for scents that actually last and fill the room with their fragrance. Many times candles smell great, but no matter how long they burn, the scent just doesn't go anywhere. Root Candles are exactly the opposite though. Within about 15 minutes of lighting the Cinnamon Spice candle, my bedroom smelled like the kitchen on baking day! Cinnamon rolls, snickerdoodles, pumpkin muffins, gingerbread...you can catch hints of all of these goodies in this one single candle. The Pumpkin Spice had the same results; it literally filled the room with the fragrance. I love the scent of both these candles, but even more I love the fact that they actually do scent the entire room! I have never lit candles so frequently as I have in the past few weeks since I received my Root Candles. I know where I will be doing my Christmas candle shopping this year!


Root Candles is offering our readers 40% off of any purchase, now through November 20. Simply enter REVIEWERFALL2016 at checkout to receive this great discount on your purchase! It doesn't get much better than that, folks!

Friday, September 23, 2016

Start Every Day With A Spring In Your Step: How To Become A Morning Person

Some of us function best in the mornings. Others take a couple of hours to warm up. If you’re not a morning person, there are ways you can boost your energy levels and alter your mindset. Here are some hints to help you start every day with a spring in your step.



Get to bed and get up earlier
Do you constantly find yourself nodding off on the sofa? Do you hit snooze a million times before reluctantly dragging your tired body out of bed? If so, it’s time to rethink your daily routine. If you’re falling asleep watching TV, you’re clearly tired, and your body needs a rest. Try going to bed earlier. If you’re getting more sleep, the mornings won’t be such a struggle. Once you get used to going to bed earlier, it will become second nature.

If you’re on the go from first, you can get a lot more accomplished. You can start work earlier, get through your to-do list or make time for social activities or hobbies. Organizing your time doesn’t just have benefits for your social life. It can also help to reduce stress. Most of us tend to get stressed when we feel like we’ve got too much to do and not enough time to do it.

Address sleep problems
Do you suffer from insomnia? Is it rare for you to sleep through the night? Do you often wake up feeling tired and lethargic? Unfortunately, sleep problems are very common. If you do have trouble sleeping, try and work out what is preventing you from getting to sleep or waking you up during the night. In many cases, it’s possible to find solutions. Are you tossing and turning because you’ve got a bad back and you can’t get comfortable? If so consider buying a new mattress. You can check out sites like Mattress-Guides.net to find reviews. Are you anxious about deadlines at work or worrying about money problems? If so, try and resolve these issues. It may not be easy, but taking steps will help. Could you speak to your boss about getting some help? Would it be beneficial to meet with a financial adviser to discuss your options? Often, the longer you sit on things, the worse they get.

Start the day with a workout
Nothing wakes you up like a workout. Exercising in the morning lifts your spirits, gets your muscles working, and increases your energy levels. Research suggests that regular exercise can help to boost productivity and concentration levels. Your morning session will set you up for your day at work. Take a look at http://www.shape.com/blogs/working-it-out/how-i-turned-myself-early-morning-exerciser for some helpful morning workout tips.



Think positively
Some of us are naturally more positive than others. If you wake up in the morning with negative thoughts, it sets the tone for the day. Look at each day as a new start and a unique opportunity. Time goes too fast to waste a single day.

You may not be a morning person. But that doesn’t mean that you can’t start every day with energy and enthusiasm. Look on the bright side, manage your time, and make sleep a priority.

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Common Plumbing Problems And How You Can Overcome Them

Having access to fresh, clean flowing water in our homes is a luxury not many of us tend to consider. After all, the technology has existed since the 18th century, and most people in the western world have had access to it for over 100 years. Add hot flowing water into that equation, and it's safe to say we have it pretty good with this system. However, as with all forms of technology, it is prone to breaking down on us occasionally. Issues with household plumbing make up a large majority of the average homeowner's maintenance issues. Read on to find out the most common ones and how you can help prevent them.

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Image source

The dripping faucet

We've all had to deal with a dripping faucet at some point. As well as being annoying (that dripping sound can get very tedious) a dripping faucet can be very expensive. It can, in fact, cause you a lot more money than you might think. A particularly severe faucet leak can mean you lose up to 30 gallons of water per day, costing you anything between thirty and two hundred dollars a year. You can either solve this problem with some simple DIY, or draft an expert in to deal with it if you don't feel entirely confident.

Leaky pipes

Leaking pipes can cause you an even bigger problem than a dripping faucet. Because pipes are hidden away, you are less likely to notice  the leak, and it could even go unseen for months. During this time, the wasted water could have given you a hefty water bill. If the leak is very pronounced and you have a stream of water coming from, it may be best to just turn off your water valve completely. If you don't, you could risk flooding your house.

A blocked sink

If nothing at all is going down your plughole, it may be time to fix your blocked sink. In the kitchen, a leading cause of a blocked sink is cooking grease and fat. When you are cooking, pour grease and oil into an empty can and dispose of it elsewhere. In the bathroom, human hair and various toiletries can be the main cause for blocking up drains. Use a grate over the plughole in your bath or shower to catch excess hair which you can then remove with ease - after all, no one likes pulling hair out of the plughole!

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Image source

Low water pressure

Having low water pressure in your home can cause you a number of problems. You may first notice it when you are running a shower, or your faucet, and there is a weak stream of water. Before you take any costly action or ring a professional, clean your showerheads and faucets. Many people think they have low water pressure when really they just have a blocked showerhead. If you replace it and it still doesn't improve the situation, you may need to look down other avenues. Check for leaks or get a professional to see if you have any corrosion in your water pipes.