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The Perks Of Installing Vinyl Siding

Posted by on Jan 4, 2017 in Uncategorized |

Vinyl siding is a great addition to any home. It will immediately increase the energy efficiency of your property. The great thing about adding vinyl siding to your home is the fact that it changes the style of your home while also making your home a little more eco-friendly. This article explains the perks of installing vinyl siding, especially as it affects the energy efficiency of your property. Vinyl Creates A Buffer Zone When you install vinyl siding, it goes directly over your existing sidewalls. The vinyl is shaped so there are gaps between the sidewalls and the outside of the vinyl. This means it creates a valuable buffer zone over your wall. Even the thinnest vinyl will protect your sidewalls in a number of ways. This basically means that your interior temperature will not be influenced as much by the outside weather. Cold air will not permeate through your walls and make it harder to keep your interior warm. Likewise, during the summer your AC will be more efficient because the outside heat won’t be transferring into your home. Furthermore, the vinyl will protect your sidewall from the elements. Old walls with peeling paint are sufficiently protected by vinyl. Investing in Extra Insulation Many people who live in regions with extreme climates invest in products with extra insulation. These products usually have thicker sidewalls. The interior is also lined with foam or fiberglass insulation that helps a lot. You can find the right insulation for your climate if you refer to the U-value. This is a basic measurement of the product’s rate of heat loss. Your local home improvement or siding store should be stocked with products that have the appropriate U-value for your climate. Vinyl is Easy to Maintain Vinyl is also eco-friendly because it is so easy to maintain. You don’t need to use any harmful chemicals or cleaners to keep your vinyl clean. You also don’t ever need to paint or stain vinyl. The planks are dyed, so the entire piece of each plank is the same color throughout. This means that fading is less of a problem. Compared to siding products like brick or wood, vinyl is super easy to keep up and definitely more eco-friendly. No matter what climate you live in, vinyl siding is a great product. It will completely alter the look of your home and reduce your utility bills over the years. Contact a local siding contractor for more...

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Two Tips To Help You Get Greater Efficiency Out Of Your HVAC System

Posted by on Dec 16, 2016 in Uncategorized |

Your heating, air conditioning, and ventilation (HVAC) system is one of the most vital components of your house.  It allows you to have clean, climate-controlled air at the touch of a button.  However, as much as you enjoy the ability to heat and cool your home on demand, it could be becoming too expensive for you to run your system as much as you want to.  If this is your current situation, you may be wondering if there are methods you can employ to drive down your HVAC costs.  Use this information to learn more about what you can do to get greater efficiency out of your HVAC system. Consider Adding More Insulation To Your Home Because the insulation in your home is hidden behind the walls, it can be easy to underestimate just how important it is.  However, insufficient insulation could be the reason why your energy expenses are starting to skyrocket. Like many things, insulation can start to deteriorate over time.  If you’re not fastidious about keeping an eye on your insulation levels, you could overlook the fact that your insulation is not providing a strong enough barrier between the inside and the outside of your home.  When your climate-controlled indoor air seeps outside, your HVAC unit has to pull on more power to maintain the temperature that you’ve set on your thermostat.  As a result, your energy bill starts to go up. That’s why it’s a good idea to call in an insulation expert to evaluate your insulation.  They may even be able to replace your older, more traditional fiberglass insulation with foam insulation.  Foam insulation fills in more of those nooks and crannies that would let your air leak out. Invest In A Smart Thermostat If you find yourself constantly turning your HVAC system on and off because you’re worried about how much it’s costing you, it may be time to invest in a smart thermostat.  These are devices that connect to the WiFi in your home.  They use a sensor to detect when someone enters and exits the house, and ramp up and down accordingly.  You could find yourself saving a healthy sum of money when you have a smart thermostat. Getting your HVAC expenses under control doesn’t have to be out of reach if you just know what to do.  Start using these tips right away so you can begin to realize the savings. Talk to an HVAC company like Bishop Plumbing, Heating and Cooling to learn...

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Both Neighbors Got New Roofs And Your Roof Has Black Streaks? How To Get It Looking New Again

Posted by on Nov 28, 2016 in Uncategorized |

If both of your neighbors just had a new roof installed and your roof looks old with black streaks, it will stand out and not in a good way. Fortunately, there are things you can do to remove these black streaks to make your roof look new again. Remove Black Streaks If you have black streaks on your roof this is algae colonies. This algae forms from feeding on the limestone filler and moisture on the shingles. It is important to get the algae off not for only aesthetic purposes but because the algae will eat through the limestone and then start eating the asphalt. Any roof cleaning solution that has sodium hydroxide in it will take care of this problem. Do not use bleach, as it can lighten the roof too much and bleach is corrosive. Choose a day to clean your roof when it is overcast and very little or no wind. The sun will dry up the cleaner too fast and the wind will not allow the cleaner to stay on the shingles. The cleaning solution needs to have time to soak deep into the black algae. Before you start cleaning, repair any shingles that are loose and clean out the gutters and downspouts, if needed. Cover up vegetation close to your home and move any kind of furniture away from the roof. Sodium hydroxide will not harm these things but it can be difficult to clean it off them. Follow the instructions on the roof cleaner on how to use it to clean the algae off your roof. Prevent Algae Algae will come back again if you do not take steps to prevent it. The best way to do this is to purchase a stain-blocking product and spray it on the roof to coat all the shingles. You can purchase this product at stores that sell roofing materials. If you use this, clean the roof first or do it right after you finish removing the algae.  You will have to reapply the solution every few years. The product will have instructions on how to apply it to the roof. Keep an eye on your roof and if you see algae coming back, clean it immediately before it has time to spread. If you do not want to do this yourself, hire a roofing company to come to your home and clean your roof for you. If your roof is very old, you may want to consider replacing...

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Does Your Furnace Smell? What You Need To Know

Posted by on Nov 1, 2016 in Uncategorized |

When the temperature outside dropped, you rushed to turn on the heat. When you lowered the thermostat, you expected to be greeted with a steady flow of warm air – not a foul smell. If your furnace is causing an odor in your home, there is a reason why. The faster you can get to the bottom of the smell, the sooner you can resolve the problem. Burning One of the most common smells outputted from a furnace is a burning scent. In many instances, this shouldn’t be a cause for concern. Typically, the burning scent you are smelling is the result of built-up dust burning inside the unit. Generally, after a short time of operation the scent should fade away. On the other hand, if the burning scent is more reminiscent of burning rubber or plastic – you need to immediately power off your unit. On the lesser end, if your registers are on the floor, it could be something as minor as a toy or other object stuck inside that is causing this smell. On the more extreme end, the heat exchanger could be failing. After you turn off the unit, look around to see if you can spot any visible issues that may be contributing to the problem. If you can’t find anything, contact a technician for further assistance. Mold or Staleness If you smell a mold or stale-like scent, this can mean a couple of things. If you’re experiencing this scent and it’s the first time you’ve powered on the unit, this is likely the result of dirt and dust that has settled inside the unit over time. As you operate the unit, this dirt and dust should blow out and the smell should fade. If the scent doesn’t go away, this is likely the result of mold forming within the unit. This is especially the case if you have a humidifier. If you failed to thoroughly clean and dry the humidifier filter at the end of the previous winter season, mold likely developed on the filter. Once you power on the unit, as the air passes through the filter, it picks up this scent and get dispersed through your home. Removing and cleaning the filter should solve the problem. If you are experiencing a scent that you can’t seem to figure out, don’t hesitate to contact a service professional, such as those found at Norris Mechanical, to rectify the problem and rule out a more serious...

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How To Ventilate Your Insulated Foam Roof Properly

Posted by on Sep 28, 2016 in Uncategorized |

One of the ways that you can insulate your roof is through foam insulation. If you chose to use foam insulation for your roof, you need to ensure that air is able to freely flow around the foam so that moisture doesn’t accumulate around the foam and compromise it. Ventilation is a key component of properly insulating your roof. Here is what you need to do if you are redoing your roof and changing out the insulation. #1 Installing Sheathing The first thing you need to do is purchase sheathing material for the roof. This material should be at least an inch thick to insure a high level of insulation. The sheathing material should be applied over the top of your rafters. The sheathing material should almost completely cover your rafters, allowing for a one-inch gap that flows along the ridge of your roof for air circulation purposes. To ensure that the gap stays in place, you can use a plastic ridge cap and place it between the rafter and your sheathing. #2 Use Temporary Plastic Long Forms In order to shape the foam that you are going to spray in-between your rafters and insulate your roof with, you need to install temporary long plastic forms to give the foam installation the right shape and make sure that the proper airflow is established for your roof. Plastic long forms are designed to be placed right next to the rafters in your roof and run the entire length of each rafter. You don’t need to permanently attach the plastic long forms in any way; you can just wedge them in place and remove them once the foam is sprayed in place. #3 Spray Foam Between The Rafters Now that the temporary plastic long forms are in place, you need to spray the foam into place. You are going to want to make sure that your body is protected with safety goggles, mask, gloves, and long-sleeved clothing. Take the spray machine and start spraying the foam in sections. You are going to want to work in small sections at a time, working back and forth and making your way forward one section at a time. #4 Fix The Foam Spray Once all the foam has been sprayed in place, you can fix any mistakes that you made. You can use a saw or razor blade to cut away any foam that you over-sprayed onto areas. When the foam is dry, you can un-wedge the plastic long forms. When these forms are removed, the necessary space for air to flow will be in place for your roof. Make sure that you provide proper breathing room when you add new insulation to your roof.  For more information, contact local professionals like K&R Roofing and...

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Freshen Up An Iron Fence’s Appearance With A Vibrant Color Of Paint And Clear Sealant

Posted by on Aug 19, 2016 in Uncategorized |

An old wrought iron fence that surrounds your home may diminish the beauty of your property and give it an eerie and unkempt appearance. Freshen up the fence’s surface by removing stains and adding a vibrant color of paint to its exterior. After you have completed the project, you can protect the new paint from peeling or fading by adding a clear coat of sealant over it. Materials Needed sponge mop nylon stocking scissors handheld scrub brush iron cleaner soapy water water hose drop cloths painter’s tape electric paint sprayer exterior paint clear sealant Remove Dust And Stains From The Iron Surface A nylon stocking is a beneficial item to use in order to collect dust from the fence’s surface. Cut a piece of a stocking so that it will fit securely around the bottom of a sponge mop. Move the stocking-covered sponge firmly over each part of the fence that has visible cobwebs or dust on it. Remove stains that are on the iron with a cleaning agent that is designed for iron and a handheld scrub brush. Soapy water can also be used to remove most stains.  Paint And Seal The Iron Surface Place a few drop cloths on the ground, next to the fence. Fill the paint cup that attaches to an electric paint sprayer with paint that will complement your property and home’s exterior. Before applying the paint to the fence, cover hardware or trim with painter’s tape. Apply an even coat of paint to both sides of the fence. Wait for the paint to dry and add a second coat of paint if desired. Once the paint has dried, rinse out the painter’s cup with a water hose. Fill the cup with clear sealant that is designed for outdoor use. Apply an even coat of the sealant to the fence’s exterior. Once you have finished coating both sides of the fence, wait for the product to dry. Afterwards, remove the pieces of tape that were used to protect hardware and trim. Uncover the ground and rinse out the paint cup. The iron fence will have a newer appearance that will stand out and draw attention to your yard. Keep the painted surface maintained by removing dirt from its surface with a water hose on a regular basis and eliminating stains with a product that is designed for iron or detergent mixed with water and a scrub brush. For assistance, talk to a professional like City Wide Fence...

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Understanding The Benefits Of Steam Showers In Your Home

Posted by on Aug 17, 2016 in Uncategorized |

If you’re remodeling your bathroom, you might be thinking about installing a new shower enclosure. One of the best shower enclosure options to consider is a steam shower unit. Before you make any decisions, it’s in your best interest to understand the benefits of having a steam shower in your home. Here are a few reasons to consider installing one as part of your remodel. Medical Benefits Steam has long been used as a treatment to help ease asthma symptoms. It can help clear sinuses, minimize congestion, and even make it easier to breathe in general. Steam can even ease sinus infection symptoms and other respiratory problems. In addition, the moisture in the steam will help to eliminate the irritation from dry nasal passages. A steam shower can also help to trigger the release of endorphins that soothe your muscles. The humidity and heat eases pain and tension in muscles, tendons, and joints. Steam may also help you minimize inflammation and other chronic pain symptoms like those from arthritis. For people with circulation problems, steam showers can help to promote more consistent, reliable circulation. The improved blood flow will minimize muscle fatigue, promote better organ function, and even help you to relax and feel more at ease. In addition, steam can stimulate your body’s lymphatic system, increasing your metabolism. Psychological Benefits Steam showers have been shown to have a therapeutic effect, easing stress and calming mental and emotional upheaval. Physical Benefits A steam shower also offers some benefits for the health of your skin. The steam helps to draw dirt and bacteria out of your pores. The humidity causes you to sweat, which opens up your pores to help clean them out. This draws toxins out, and those toxins are then flushed away. This protects your skin from blackheads and other severe breakouts. Since the steam opens up your pores, it can also make a difference in your skin’s moisture levels. If you’ve been struggling with dry skin, particularly in the winter months, apply moisturizer right after a steam shower. It allows the moisturizer to seep deep into your pores, giving your skin the maximum possible benefit.from that moisturizer. These are a few of the reasons why you should invest in a steam shower for your home. With these benefits, you can see why a shower like this would be a worthwhile investment. Talk with a contractor today to find out what your options are. Contact a company like Jesse’s Tri-City Glass & Mirror Inc for more...

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Prevent Water From Damaging Or Entering Your Commercial Building’s Concrete Basement

Posted by on Jul 29, 2016 in Uncategorized |

If the concrete basement inside of the commercial building that you own often becomes filled with several inches of water whenever it rains, the following tips will assist with eliminating water and preventing additional moisture from entering the basement. By utilizing these tips, the basement will remain damage-free and you can safely store items inside of it without needing to worry about them being prone to water damage. Hire A Plumber To Install A Sump Pump Hire a professional plumber to perform a sump pump installation in the basement”s concrete floor. A hole will be created in the flooring and the pump’s base will rest inside of it on top of a layer of gravel. Once the pump is secure, concrete will be added around the equipment to assist with holding it in place. A PVC (polyvinyl chloride) pipe will be attached to the top of the pump. The opposite end of this pipe will be installed through one of the basement’s walls. Whenever it rains, any water that accumulates on the basement’s floor will be dispersed through the PVC pipe and deposited outdoors.  Fill Cracks In Concrete Walls And Apply A Sealer Use mild detergent, water, and a sponge to clean the basement’s interior walls. Once stains have been eliminated you will be able to determine if there are any visible cracks in the concrete. If so, fill them with an even layer of concrete patch. Many types of patch come in tubes that can easily be applied with a caulk gun. After filling the cracks, smooth out the surface of the patch with a putty knife. Wipe away any excess patch with a damp sponge. Wait several hours for the patch to dry. Afterwards, apply an even coat of waterproof sealer to the interior, concrete walls. Use a paint roller or paintbrush to apply the sealer in straight lines. One or two coats of sealer will provide sufficient protection from moisture.  Level The Property And Clean Out The Gutter System Use a rake to level the property near the outside of your business. If there are any parts of the property that contain deep holes, fill them with topsoil before leveling the ground. Remove debris from the inside of the gutter system to ensure that water can flow freely through the pieces that it is made out of. Eliminate hardened residue with soapy water and a scrub brush. Rinse the gutter system out with water when you are done. Make sure that the endpiece of the gutter system is lined up correctly so that water will be deposited away from the...

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3 Unconventional Options You Will Want To Consider For Wood Flooring With Your Remodel

Posted by on Jul 13, 2016 in Uncategorized |

Are you considering adding new wood floors to your home with a remodeling project? Have you considered some of the less conventional options, such as engineered floors or bamboo? Today, there are many more modern choices to give your home durable wood floors and sometimes these options can even cost less than conventional wood flooring. Here are some of the alternatives you may want to consider to give your home new floors during a remodeling project: 1. Laminated Flooring That Looks Just Like Real Wood Laminate flooring can be a great choice for new floors in your home. There are more choices for laminate than ever before, and some of them make it hard to tell the difference between laminate and other flooring products. If you want to have wood floors in an area like a basement, you may want to consider using a laminate flooring with a wood pattern. This can give your basement the look of real wood, but with a durable, water resistant material that can withstand a basement flood.   2. Engineered Flooring Products That Can Be Easily Removed Engineered floors are a type of synthetic flooring that have layers of wood and compressed materials. These floors have many advantages over real wood floors, such as the fact that they can have padding installed beneath them to make them more comfortable to walk on. They can also be installed and removed easily, which can be good if you like to remodel often or change the look of the floor. 3. Bamboo And Other Alternative Materials For Greener Wood Floors Bamboo is another newer product which can be a good alternative to conventional wood floors. It is a green material that grows quickly and can be harvested year after year. One of the great things about bamboo is the fact that you can choose from a variety of different styles and colors for your floor, and it is an affordable alternative to other flooring materials. There are also other alternatives, such as using reclaimed wood or a vinyl flooring that is installed just like some of the other wood flooring products. These are some of the alternatives that you may want to consider to give your home new floors for a remodeling project. If you are ready to have new floors installed in your home, contact a contractor like Lockwoods Carpets and talk with them about bamboo and other alternatives to conventional...

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Understanding The Different Garage Door Openers

Posted by on Jun 7, 2016 in Uncategorized |

You may spend a little more time on considering your actual garage door. You’ll choose the style, color, material and even insulation options. However, on a day-to-day basis, the garage door opener can have a significant impact on your routines. Gone are the days of simply pushing or pulling the door – now it’s all about automation. Choose a garage door opener that best serves your space and noise preferences. Jackshaft Openers Jackshaft garage door openers run via a motor that operates pulleys and cables. This system turns a  torsion bar, which in turn raises the garage door. In reverse, the motor loosens the cables to lower the door. Because jackshaft openers mount on the wall beside the garage doors, they keep the ceilings free for storage. Though one of the more expensive options, jackshaft openers are very quiet and reliable. Choose a jackshaft opener if the garage is adjacent to a bedroom and/or if you have an atypical ceiling height in your garage.   Direct-Drive Unit If you want a really quiet garage door opener, Consumer Research recommends buying a direct-drive unit. With this setup, a J-arm connects the motor to the door. Instead of a trolley moving along the chain, as is the case with chain-driven operators, the motor itself travels this route. An overhead rail house the chain. These systems are so quiet because the motor is the only moving part. Made in Germany, direct-drive openers are typically priced similarly to belt-driven units. Such an opener is a good alternative to a jackshift opener. Chain-Driven Opener A basic automated opener is a chain-driven model. With this model, a trolley connected to a J-arm moves along the chain. The J-arm, in turn, is connected to the garage door. While the old school varieties could be somewhat noisy, new models operate with DC motors and quieter vibration technology. This makes them quieter, though probably not ideal for garages adjacent to bedrooms. A chain-driven opener is good for detached garages or those separated from the living area by a hallway or mudroom. Belt-Driven Opener A belt-driven opener is almost identical to a chain-driven one except the chain is replaced with a reinforced belt. Manufacturers create the belt out of steel-reinforced rubber, polyurethane or fiberglass. They are slightly more expensive than chain-driven openers. However, they’re just as reliable and much quieter.    Screw-Driven Opener In this type of garage door opener, a motor rotates a threaded-steel rod – like a screw – to which the trolley is affixed. The trolley moves along the rod, which replaces the chain or belt, to move the garage door. There are fewer moving parts, so screw-driven openers often require less maintenance. For noise, they’re somewhere between chain-driven and belt-driven openers. Choose this option if you have a heavier door or if you want less maintenance in your opener. After you’ve selected the perfect garage door, choose an opener that works within your budget and your...

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Buying An Old Home? Hire An Electrician For These Important Jobs

Posted by on Jun 7, 2016 in Uncategorized |

Old homes have a high degree of charm, but it’s important to ensure that you go into the buying process with your eyes wide open. A home’s age can mean that there are issues, including with its electrical system — and, over time, you could be exposed to a host of problems because of the old wiring. This shouldn’t necessarily scare you away from buying an old home, but it should remind you to budget to have some electrical work completed once the sale goes through. Although the home inspection might shine a light on some specific electrical issues that you’ll want addressed, it’s generally a good idea to hire an electrician to handle these following jobs. Upgrading The Wiring Upgrading the wiring in an old home is arguably the biggest electrical job that your electrician will encounter. In many cases, old homes will be equipped with aluminum wire, which poses more of a safety risk than the present-day standard of copper wire. In other cases, the electrician will encounter wiring that doesn’t meet the current building code. It’s best to hire an electrician who has performed work of this nature in the past. Upgrading the entire home is a time-consuming process that requires plenty of care, as the electrician will often have to cut holes in your walls to access the old wiring. Updating The Circuit Panel Box Old homes weren’t wired with the electrical demands of the modern-day family in mind, which means that many of the circuits in the home will not support your various electronic devices. The result will be a multitude of inconveniences — you could deal with the frequent tripping of circuits whenever you run two or more electrical devices at the same time, for example. Your electrician will be able to first inspect the age and condition of the circuit panel box, and then upgrade the circuits so you won’t be left in the dark. Tending To The Service Head The service head in your home is the device through which wiring from the nearby power poles meet and enter your home. In an old home, the wiring and connections in the service head are almost certainly outdated — and the result can often be power outages, constantly dimming lights and other inconveniences. Your licensed electrician will be able to climb onto your roof, remove the cap of the service head and inspect the situation. He or she will then be able to perform the necessary upgrades. To learn more about updating the electrical system in an old home, see Dr Electric or another professional electrician in your...

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