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2 Ways To Help Secure Your Garage

Posted by on Jun 9, 2016 in Uncategorized |

Having an attached garage makes your life a lot easier. You can pull your car right into the garage and then unload it into your house. However, your attached garage can also be a weak spot in your home’s security. If you are worried about how to make sure that your house is still as secure as possible, there are some simple things that you can do to help assure that security.  Cover Your Windows If your garage door has windows, it is easy for a bad guy to look in and see what you have in there, or if you are home. There is one easy way to get rid of that risk: covering your windows. If you don’t want to completely block them up, which would get rid of any light you might get in your garage, there are other options.  For example, you can go to a home supply store and get a film that you can put over your windows. That film will make it look like your windows are frosted. That way you still get the light, but you have blocked the view. Since the film goes on the inside of the window, you won’t have to worry about anyone peeling it off. A side benefit of this film is that it will help to hold your windows together and make them harder to break.  Add Security Lights Adding some lights is an easy way to scare off any bad guys. There are a few ways you can do that. One is that you can add motion detector lights on the outside of your garage. Anytime they sense movement, the lights will turn on. Another way you can add lights is to have a sensor that turns on a light in your garage every time the door opens. That will help you when it’s dark and you are coming home. Some automatic garage door openers also have lights as part of their system. They will automatically turn on when the garage door is activated. The light will be on a timer, which you can set, and will be on long enough for you to turn on an overhead light or to get in the house.  Making sure that your family is safe is something that you spend a lot of time doing. Making sure that your garage isn’t a weak spot in your home’s security is one way to do that.  For garage doors, contact a company such as Plano Overhead Garage...

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Don’t Let The Water In: 3 Simple Steps To Waterproof Your Basement

Posted by on May 24, 2016 in Uncategorized |

If you have a basement, you need to protect it against moisture damage. To do that, you need to eliminate both types of moisture threats, which are interior humidity and exterior water – such as rain and snow. The humidity inside can cause moisture to build up on the concrete, which can lead to mold growth and concrete damage. The water outside can seep under the foundation and into your basement through the exterior doors and windows. Here are some steps you can take to waterproof your basement and protect it against interior and exterior moisture hazards. Insulate the Dryer Vents One of the simplest ways to waterproof the interior of your basement is to insulate the dryer vent. As the dryer heats up, warm air can escape through the seams in your dryer vents. By sealing the dryer vents using aluminum tape, you’ll stop warm, humid air from escaping into your basement. Add a De-Humidifier If you have a bathroom in your basement, it’s important that you control the moisture that builds up when you use the shower. Adding a de-humidifier will allow you to remove excess moisture from the air. It’s also a good idea to install an exhaust fan in the basement bathroom and instruct everyone to turn it on whenever they use the bathroom. The exhaust fan will also remove excess moisture from the basement bathroom. Repair Your Rain Gutters To thoroughly waterproof your basement, you need to look outside too. Your rain gutters are the first line of defense when it comes to keeping rain water out of your basement. Before the rains arrive, be sure that your rain gutters are cleaned out and in good condition. Use a whisk broom to sweep away any leaves that might be clogging the gutters. Once you’ve done that, use your garden hose to wash away any dirt and debris that might be stuck to the bottom of the gutters. While you’re washing the gutters, pay attention to where the water drains from your downspouts. If the water is emptying out near the foundation of your home, you should adjust them so that they drain as far away from your home as possible. If your downspouts drain too close to your home, the water could seep into your basement. Water and moisture in your basement can lead to significant damage, such as mold growth. If you haven’t waterproofed your basement, you should do that as soon as possible. Use the suggestions provided above to protect your basement against water and moisture damage. For more information, contact B-Sure Systems Inc. or a similar...

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Examining Which Fungal Growths Prefer Your Home’s Materials

Posted by on May 9, 2016 in Uncategorized |

A study published in the US National Library of Medicine in 2011 shows that some fungi and molds found in water damaged structures do seem to have an attraction to certain types of building materials. Learn more about which kinds of mold and fungi prefer water damaged materials in your home. The Famous Green Mold On Walls When damaging water has come into your home, like in a flood or something as small as a roof leak, you may see a green mold growing on the walls in the area water has come into contact with. The green mold you see is called Penicillium chrysogenum and is the same mold discovered by Alexander Fleming in 1928. While this mold was a great discovery towards the manufacturing of useful antibiotics, it is never good to have growing in your home. Penicillin mold spores are airborne and can have a serious impact on people with depressed immune systems and respiratory problems. Penicillium chrysogenum is the most common type of mold growth found in homes that have suffered water damage. For this reason, making sure you have water restoration and cleanup professionals visit when you find mold growth and water damaged materials in your home is extremely important to your health and your family’s health. The Mold That Prefers Cellulose Cellulose is an organic compound that is present in many building materials like wood and wallpaper. Chaetomium globosum is a common mold found in damp places, like water-damaged areas in your home, that feeds on the cellulose in building materials and has been found to be a human allergen. Cleaning up this and other types of toxic mold is a careful process that should be carried out by a professional, especially if you or someone in your family suffers with issues like asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Dangers Of Wet House Dust Mucor racemosus is a mold commonly found in house dust found on the floors in most homes. When you home is flooded or otherwise damaged by water, Mucor racemosus becomes wet, but still has potent properties for toxic health effects in those people suffering with respiratory problems. Water damaged areas in your home could contain more than one mold, so ensuring you retain the services of expert water cleanup professionals is important to avoid getting exposed and sick. When you home suffers water damage, it can be disheartening and overwhelming. Your first instinct is get it cleaned up and back to normal as fast as possible. However, taking the time to hire professionals like those found at Complete Restoration Services for this type of cleanup is the best way because you can avoid causing more problems, like those with your...

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4 Ways To Protect Your Construction Site

Posted by on Apr 20, 2016 in Uncategorized |

Theft and vandalism of a construction site is a common occurrence. Stolen and damaged equipment can slow down a project and lead to further complications. It is because of this you need to take steps to secure your site. Here are some tips for securing your site.  Limit Access to the Site One of the most important steps you can take to secure the construction site is to limit the access points around it. Temporary fencing can be placed around the entire site and only one access point allowed. By sticking with just one access point, you can monitor activity in and out of the site easier.  Choose the Right Fencing It is not enough to just erect temporary fencing. You need to pick the right type. There are several types of fencing available, including wire mesh and chain link.  Chain link fencing offers some sense of permanency because the posts have to be secured in the ground with cement holders. It can take some time to set up the fence and this can take a day away from working on your project.  A wire mesh fence is a popular option because it is easier to set up than chain link fencing and is relatively cost-effective. It is also very secure because the meshing is tight and strong.  Work with a fencing contractor to determine the best type of fencing for your construction site.  Install Motion-Sensor Lights Even if your construction site has lighting, it might not be enough to deter potential thieves and vandals. However, the addition of motion-sensor lights could be. The lights should be installed throughout your construction site, but especially in areas that are out of view from the most trafficked areas of the site.  Require Sign-Ins for Equipment At the end of each day, ensure that all workers are returning equipment back to storage by having them sign off when storing it. Appoint someone to verify the equipment is in place and that the storage is properly locked.  As an added measure, you can have kill switches installed on your equipment. The switches can be triggered to disabled when an unauthorized person attempts to use it. Even if the equipment is stolen, the thieves cannot use it.  There are many other ways you can secure your construction site and equipment. Assess the site and determine what other measures you and your workers can put into place to safeguard your business. Check out a company like Statewide Rent-A-Fence to learn more about your...

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Defending Your Deck — 5 Privacy Solutions To Fit Any Budget

Posted by on Mar 8, 2016 in Uncategorized |

Adding a new deck to your home is a great way to bring more enjoyment to the outdoors, increase the entire home’s functionality and make it easier to entertain friends and family. But if you have nearby neighbors and lack privacy, that deck can be less appealing and even seldom used. So, how can you add some privacy to your lounging and entertaining space outside? Here are 5 easy things you can do on any budget.  Add a Wall A privacy fence is an easy and cheap way to make your deck more protected from views and noise, but you will want to dress it up to prevent it from sticking out like a sore thumb. Opt for a more ornamental fence design or create your own by capping a basic fence with lattice or decorative bars. Adding container plants or small trees along the inside of the fence will help it blend into the deck.  Use the Home The easiest way to design yourself some privacy is to make use of existing buildings or hardscaping. Your house is an obvious view-blocker if you can find the right spot. Walk around the house and consider all the angles (from both inside and outside) to see if there is a perfect spot just waiting for a nice deck. If the best location is not the most convenient from the home’s exterior doors, consider adding a short walkway to the deck or even converting an exterior window into a door that works better.  Try Some Greenery A few well-placed natural barriers can help immensely while still making the deck feel warm and inviting. A tree is a great way to add a cover over the area as well as block views from the side. Evergreens are another excellent, year-round alternative that blocks out both views and noise. Use a mixture of trees and shrubs placed logistically to create a haven for entertaining.  Use Lattice or Fabric  If you’re looking for a less permanent or less expensive option, try some lattice or a trellis. A trellis can be planted with climbing vines to add to the coziness of your deck while partially blocking the view and allowing sunlight in. Canvas fabric can also be used as a temporary solution. Create a sail-shaped canopy using sturdy canvas attached to poles or a frame above the deck or hang durable fabric like curtains to block your neighbors’ views.  Add a Roof A simple roof can transform any deck. In addition to blocking the views of second-story or uphill neighbors, it also creates a nice shade in warmer climates, protects the deck in the winter and makes the whole space feel cozier. While adding a roof may be the most expensive option, if you are thinking long-term, a quality pergola or extension of the home’s roofing material is the best way to complement a long-lasting composite deck that will provide years of use.  For more information, contact a deck contractor in your...

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Three Kitchen Safety Tips That You Should Know

Posted by on Jan 21, 2016 in Uncategorized |

The kitchen is the most used room in many homes, but it can also be the most dangerous. Heat, sharp objects, and dangerous appliances are contained in this one space. The following tips can help you keep your kitchen the safe haven for food and family that it is meant to be. Tip #1: Stow Blades Safely Avoid the temptation to simply shut sharp knifes and cutting implements into a drawer. Instead, store them in a knife block or on a magnetic wall strip. Make sure the strip or the block is out of the reach of small children. When washing knives, soak them in a cup in the sink as opposed to throwing them into the dishwater to become lost beneath the suds. They should also be placed into a dishwasher point down to avoid pricks. Tip #2: Use Countertop Appliance Safely Appliance cords can be dangerous, especially for children. Keep the cords of small countertop appliances tucked away so a child doesn’t pull on them and bring a toaster or microwave onto their head. Use appliances as directed. For example, sticking a knife into a toaster to dislodge a stuck piece of bread is both an electrocution and a fire hazard. If you have the storage space, put away small appliances when they aren’t in use. If you must leave them on the counter, unplug them when you aren’t using them to minimize the chances of an electrical fire or accident. Tip #3: Install Fire Safety Systems Kitchen fires are often the main safety concern. Fortunately, there are several ways to avoid them. At the very least, make sure your kitchen is equipped with a fire extinguisher rated for kitchen use and that everyone in the home knows how to use it. You should also have a fire alarm nearby. An alarm that is heat sensitive is more useful, since you don’t want cooking smoke or steam to set it off. Finally, consider installing a fire suppression system. Overhead sprinklers are one option. There are designs that are almost invisible when they aren’t deployed. You can also have a range hood system installed. This system sits beneath the hood so it only targets the stove and oven in the event of a fire. Talk to a company like Fire Extinguisher Service Center to learn more. While practicing general safety tips can make your kitchen a much safer place, having the right safety equipment is also a must. Contact a contractor to see what types of home safety systems would be a good fit in your...

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Information On Septic Cleaning For New Homeowners

Posted by on Jan 21, 2016 in Uncategorized |

No matter how careful you are with managing what goes into your septic tank, regular tank pumpings and cleanings are still a must. This is because sludge and scum will still build up inside of the tank, which can lead to messy overflows or major tank problems down the line. If you are a new homeowner that is dealing with a private septic system for the first time, the following guide can help you understand your septic maintenance routine. How often should you have your tank pumped and cleaned? There is no single correct answer to this question. The previous homeowner can provide you with their timetable, but understand it may be different than yours. This is because the frequency of cleaning depends on the size of the tank, how many people are in your household, and the types of waste you put down the drains. A heavily used system may need cleaning annually, while one with less stress may go for three years between cleanings. Use information from the previous homeowner as a guide, but you may want to schedule an inspection after the first year, so you can get a more realistic picture of your tank’s use. Can you clean the tank yourself? This is not a good idea. Septic pumping and cleaning is a dangerous job. Not only is the septic system filled with highly hazardous waste, the process of cleaning it is also dangerous. Sewer gases can be a real concern. Cleaning uses both special brushes and tools to break up the solids, along with a pump truck to remove them. Under no circumstances should you or any other untrained individual enter the tank through the manhole cover. What does a clean tank look like? If you are new to septic tanks, you may be surprised to see that a clean tank still looks dirty. This is because a film of scum is left on the walls of the tank. This is actually a bacterial film that feeds on the contents of your septic system, helping to break down the waste so the system works properly. A proper cleaning leaves this film in place so your system will remain balanced. Is there anything you can do to help or save money? Knowing your septic system’s access points is very helpful. They are often buried, so a pumping company may charge extra if they have to locate the access point or uncover it. The easiest way to avoid this charge is to get the access information from the previous homeowner and to uncover it before your septic service arrives. Failing this, make note of the location after your service finds it the first time so you can then handle this job in the future. It is better to pay for this part of the service only once as opposed to every time you need a cleaning. Contact a local septic cleaning company if you have further questions about your system. To learn more, contact a business like Hemley’s Septic Tank...

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Heavy Metal: Perfect For Keeping Moss, Lichen, And Parents Away From Your Home

Posted by on Jan 4, 2016 in Uncategorized |

Two things that often do not mix in today’s society are heavy metal and parents, but other things that avoid heavy metal are the moss, mold, and lichens that grow on roofs around the country. If you live in a densely wooded area where these plants and fungi are common on roofs in your neighborhood, then you may be surprised to hear that all it takes is a simple strip of metal to banish many parasites from your roof for good. Here are some details on using the power of heavy metals to make your roof look rockin’.  Which Metals Work? Copper, zinc, and lead are common choices for this treatment since they belong to a family of metals that form sulfate compounds when they come in contact with rain. These sulfate compounds act as natural herbicides that slow the growth of moss and prevent it from developing on your roof. Since this compound forms naturally when it rains, this method of moss and mold control is very much “set it and forget it” for controlling plants and fungi within fifteen feet below the metal strips.  How To Get Started In order to take advantage of this simple moss control, you simply need to install some strips of metal underneath your existing shingling. This can be done before or after you have your roof shingled, but it is easiest to do while your roof is being installed, since you’ll already have a clean, moss-free slate to work with. As noted above, a strip of copper, zinc, or lead will cover about fifteen feet of your roof directly below the strip, so if you have a very long roof, you’ll probably need a second row of strips lower down.  Precautions Much like a parental advisory sticker on a new Slayer album, there are some warnings associated with using this type of treatment that homeowners should be aware of. First off, don’t use this method on roofs that drain into a vegetable garden, pond, or other place where people or animals could get in contact with runoff water. That’s because while metal sulfates are effective herbicides, they can also be harmful if ingested in large quantities. Next, don’t expect this method to instantly get rid of a thick blanket of moss on your roof. Rather, remove as much moss and lichen as you can with a stronger herbicide like bleach and water first, then install your metal strips to maintain your green-free roof. Contact a roofing company like Acoma Roofing for more...

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Choosing The Right Type Of Roof Coating For Your Home

Posted by on Dec 16, 2015 in Uncategorized |

Roof coatings are a good option when you want to prevent extra air and moisture from getting into your home. However, you need to know which type is best suited for your personal situation so you can pick the right product for insulating your roof. Over the Shingles One type of coating you can choose is one that goes over your existing shingles. This product is typically an acrylic-based coating that you can brush or spray onto the shingles. The layer you apply helps protect your shingles from sunlight, rain, ice and wind. It is important to note that this product needs to go over your shingles in a cohesive layer. If there are gaps in the layer, then water and air can still get into your home. For this reason, you want to look for a coating that has been tinted. The color will help you see where the layer has been applied so you do not have any gaps. However, you need to be aware that the color does not fade. This means that the roof coating not only protects your home from moisture and air, but it also changes the color of your roofing at the same time. Additionally, this product may void any warranty you have on your current shingles. Some shingle manufacturers do not know how well their products will hold up to the weather if it is coated with another product. You need to consider this factor before choosing to complete this type of work on your home. Under the Roofing When your plan is to install a new roof on your home, then you should consider using a product that goes under the roofing. You can place this type of coating under any roofing materials such as asphalt, slate, metal or composite shingles. This coating is very similar to the one used on top of the shingles. It can be applied with a brush or a spray along the top of the plywood base. The coating seals the wood, which is how it stops air and moisture from getting into your home. This process is similar to painting the wood, except the coating offers you additional protection. Another difference is that this product does not usually void the warranty for most residential roofing. Since the product sits underneath the roofing material, it will not influence the exterior portion. Essentially, the roof coating acts in the same manner as the plastic water barrier most of your roof may already have–the only real difference is in the application process.   When you want to stop air and moisture from penetrating your roof, it is important to look into the different types of coatings. These coatings help protect your roof, but you need to determine which type is right for your personal situation. To learn more about professional roof coating solutions, talk to a company like Stetson...

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Three of the Fastest Routes to Ice Dam Removal

Posted by on Nov 28, 2015 in Uncategorized |

Although ice dams can create some very pretty dangling icicles that look like the icing on a gingerbread house, they can actually create some very serious problems for your eaves, eavestroughs and roof. It is very important that, when you see ice dams building up, you remove them immediately. Here are three of the fastest routes to ice dam removal. Rock Salt, (or Ice Melt) and Lots of It Rock salt or ice melt is excellent for minimizing and extinguishing ice dams. You will need to climb up a stable ladder to sprinkle the ice dam heavily with either of these ice-melting products. Create a thick layer of the salt or ice melt across the body of the ice dam so that you get a uniform melt of the ice and so it all slides down over the edge of the roof or into the gutters (if the ice dam is not quite substantial enough to block the gutters). Once the ice has melted all the way down, you can place rock salt or ice melt in the gutters themselves so that the next freezing rain or snowfall melts the minute it hits the salt or ice melt product.  Ice Dam Heating Cables If you have not done so already, and the ice dam is still small, purchase ice dam heating cables. These cables come in loops or straight cord form, and you can attach them to the edges of the roof or lay them in the gutters where the water and melted snow begins to freeze and push back onto the roof. When you already have an ice dam, you may need to find an alternative way to attach the cables over the top of the ice on the roof or on top of the ice sticking out of the gutters. A pneumatic staple gun can hold the cables to the ice until the cables have sufficiently melted the ice for you to attach them to the roof and/or gutters properly. The cables should remain plugged in and actively working until the ice is gone. An Awl and a Blowdryer When you cannot afford the heating cables, the salt or the ice melt products, a good, old-fashioned approach works just as well. This approach uses an ice pick, or awl, and a blowdryer. Be sure the blowdryer is set on “HIGH” and plugged into a grounded outlet for safety reasons. Then take the blowdryer and the ice pick and carefully climb up to the ice dam. If necessary, have someone hand you the dryer and the ice pick after you have climbed onto the roof. Use the pick to tap the ice at an angle and with the slope of the roof while using the heat of the dryer to melt the ice and give the pick a chance to crack the ice. DO NOT jab at the ice straight down or perpendicular to the roof or you could cause a lot of damage to your shingles!  Work your way down to the bulk of the ice dam and let the hot dryer blow on the spot until you hear or see the block crack. Now you should be able to tap chunks out of the ice until it all falls to the ground. This is a temporary...

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3 Things You Will Want To Know About Groundwater And Well Mechanical Systems

Posted by on Nov 10, 2015 in Uncategorized |

If you rely on a well for your home or need to have one drilled, there are a lot of things to consider, such as geological data and location of groundwater. To get this information, you may want to have a geological survey done. This information can them be used to tell you the type of well mechanical systems you will need. Here are some things that you will want to know about the mechanical systems your well needs: 1. Dealing With Hard Water Problems In Groundwater One major problem in many areas with high mineral content is hard water. This can be seen in pipes and appliances where calcium buildup is visible as a white chalky film. To deal with this problem, you will need to have a filtration or water softener system installed for your well. If your water only has a minor mineral problem, a simple water filter can help solve the problem. For areas with extremely high mineral content, you may want to consider having a complete water softening system installed in your home. 2. Complete Water Systems For Areas With Acidic Soils Some areas can also have a problem with acidic soils. This can be caused by bedrock like limestone, which causes high alkalinity of the water. This is a problem in areas where aquifers are located below the surface. To deal with this problem, a complete well water treatment system will need to be installed. The water treatment system is a purification system that removes minerals and lowers the alkalinity of the water. 3. Drilling Deep Wells With Submersible Pumps To Get Water To The Surface There are also areas where the groundwater is located deep beneath the surface. This means that a deep well will need to be drilled to access the water. A conventional jet pump for this type of well is not a practical solution. Instead, a submersible pump can be installed at the bottom of the casing to pump the water to the surface. This type of pump also has the benefit of being protected from the elements, so they can last a lot longer. These are some of the things that you will want to know about the mechanical systems being installed for your well. If you need help with the drilling of a water well or installation of equipment, contact a water well drilling service like Golden Gate Well Drilling & Water Conditioning to help you with your water...

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