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When Trees Are Out Of Control: Prevent Foundation Damage And Roof Problems With Adequate Pruning

Posted by on Sep 28, 2015 in Uncategorized |

Although trees are a beautiful addition to any yard, trees that are out of control can cause significant problems. From broken branches falling on roofs, to roots growing into the foundation of your home, trees that are too close to your dwelling should be pruned or taken down completely. When you own property, it’s important to look for signs of disease or rot in the trees that are close to your home. If you find issues, it’s time to call a professional tree service to assess the situation more carefully. Tree Branches are Touching or Close to Your Roof Tree branches that are too close to your roof will eventually start touching your roof. This can cause serious problems with your roofing tiles, making tiles come loose or causing breaks in the tiles. Before you have problems with leaks in your roof, all branches that are close to your roof should be pruned. Even if the branches aren’t touching the roof, they can easily break off in a storm. Broken branches cause similar issues to branches that are touching the roof. Tree Roots Can Cause Serious Foundation Damage If you have discovered a leak in your basement recently, this could be because of tree roots that have grown out of control. Tree roots can cause problems with your foundation, and if you have any trees close to your home, they may be the cause of recent leaks. Tree roots grow pervasively, and it’s important to understand that for as much of the tree you see that is out of the ground, there is at least that big of a root system underground. This means that if tree branches are close to the house, chances are that there are tree roots close to the house as well. If the tree you are trimming has been trimmed a number of times, the roots are definitely close to the foundation of your home. When you notice broken branches, signs of tree rot, or leaves that seem like they are diseased, it’s time to call in a professional tree service such as Smitty’s Tree Service Inc to take a look at the trees on your property. While it is possible to do some light pruning on your own, it’s nearly impossible to properly prune a larger tree on your own without the right equipment. If you have concerns about potential foundation or roof damage caused by trees in your yard, call in a tree service right away before your problems become more difficult to...

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Replacing Your Roof Before Winter? Know Your Material Options

Posted by on Sep 8, 2015 in Uncategorized |

As the seasons begin to change, you can find yourself shocked one morning when you wake up and realize that all of a sudden it is autumn again. And if you are planning any major home improvement projects, like replacing your roof, you will need to get those done before the icy chill of winter begins. As you plan your roof replacement this fall, you may wonder what roofing materials you should use in your home improvement project. Get to know some of the options available to you so that you can get started on your roofing project before winter creeps up on you in the same way autumn did.  Recycled Rubber Roofing One of the newer roofing material options available for home use is recycled rubber roofing. This roofing material also happens to be highly eco-friendly.  The rubber used in this roofing material comes primarily from recycled car tires. Rubber provides excellent insulation for your home. It prevents heat or cool air from escaping your home and at the same time will absorb thermal energy from the sun, preventing it from penetrating into your home from the roof. Recycled rubber roofing comes in a variety of style choices designed to look similar to different types of shingles. This is an extremely durable form of roofing material that will last for decades with little need for repairs.  Slate Shingles Unlike standard shingles that are made out of wood or asphalt, slate shingles are made from natural stone that is quarried from mines throughout the United States. This is perhaps the most durable roofing material around, as stone like slate can last for decades if not centuries.  In fact, some slate roofs are even made from repurposed slate shingles that were used on other homes previously. However, with this durability also comes an increase in the initial cost of installation. Slate is also a very heavy roofing material in comparison to other types of shingles. Because of the heaviness of the stone, you should not attempt to install slate shingles yourself. A trained professional can ensure that the structure underlying your slate shingles is strong enough to support the stone to prevent any damage to the main structure of your home.  Now that you have a couple of ideas about the materials you can use for your new roof, you can get in contact with a roofing supply company and place your order. The sooner you get started, the more likely your project will be complete before winter. Visit a company like American Building & Roofing Inc...

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3 Tips To Make Your French Doors More Private

Posted by on Aug 19, 2015 in Uncategorized |

If you are trying to achieve an elegant feel in your home, then having sliding glass doors leading into your yard can be a bit boring. Replacing these doors with french doors, installed by a company like Port Orchard Glass, will help you improve your home’s aesthetic value, but you could feel a little exposed. Here are three tips you can use to help make your french doors more private in the future. 1. Install iron scroll work over the window panels on your doors. If you want to add an additional design element to the exterior of your home[,] while making your french doors more private, then installing iron scroll work over the window panels on your doors could be a viable solution. The ornate patterns developed by iron workers can easily be ordered to fit the dimensions of your french doors. These decorative iron elements will allow natural light to enter your home, while obscuring the view for anyone looking through the windows from outside. Opting to invest in custom iron scroll work to make your french doors more private provides an elegant and stylish solution. 2. Transform your door’s window panels into faux stained glass window panes. Stained glass not only obscures the view from outside your home, it also acts as a piece of art that you can be proud to showcase in your home. If you want to turn your french door’s window panels into faux stained glass window panes, the process is simple. You will need glass paint, a decorative design, and some instant lead from your local craft store. Trace your decorative design onto the window panels using the instant lead. Starting in the middle of your design to prevent smudging, add paint until your design is complete. Allow time to dry, and enjoy your new faux stained glass doors. 3. Attach some frosting film to your door’s windows. If you are looking for a less-permanent solution to your privacy problem, then frosting film could be the answer. This product is designed to adhere to the surface of your glass, then peel away once it’s no longer needed. Start by purchasing a roll of contact paper and print out a stencil in a design that matches your personal style. Trace the stencil onto the contact paper in a repeating pattern, then cut away the negative space between your tracings. Place the contact paper on your windows, and you will have a chic looking frosted pane. Maintaining privacy with a french door doesn’t have to be difficult. Install a piece of iron scroll work over the window, turn the panes into faux stained glass panels, or use contact paper to create a frosted...

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Reading The Cracks: Asphalt Repair

Posted by on Aug 5, 2015 in Uncategorized |

Not only do cracks in your driveway make your home look shoddy, but they can also undermine the integrity of your asphalt. Thus, whenever cracks form, you need to take steps to repair the cracks before they lead to the need to replace your entire driveway. While you might think that all cracks are the same, you would be wrong. In order to make enduring repairs, you need to understand what type of cracks you are dealing with and what is required to make a repair.  Longitudinal Cracks Simply due to the heating and cooling cycles that your driveway is exposed to, your driveway may start to crack. Often cracks that result from heating and cooling will extend down the length of your driveway or across the width of your driveway. Thus, they are called longitudinal cracks. In order to repair such cracks, you need to first make sure that they are at least half-an-inch wide. If they are not half-an-inch wide, your joint-sealing compound will not work properly, so you will need to widen the cracks with a chisel and hammer. Next, remove all loose and/or organic material from the cracks. You can then fill the cracks with a rubberized joint compound. The rubber will allow for expansion and contraction and thus prevent further damage.  Block Cracks If you do nothing to repair longitudinal cracks, they may grow into block cracks, which divide your driveway into large sections or blocks. You can repair block cracks in the same way that you repair longitudinal cracks, but you should also apply a seal coat to protect your driveway against future damage.  Crocodile Cracks If you don’t repair block cracks, eventually crocodile cracks divide your driveway into small clumps of asphalt, which resemble the scales on a crocodile’s back. If you have crocodile cracks in your driveway, you cannot simply fill the cracks with a joint compound. Instead, you have to remove the damaged section of driveway. If a large portion of your driveway has succumbed to crocodile cracks, then you will have no choice but to replace your driveway. As long as the damage is small, you can remove the damaged portion of your driveway and replace it with a patching compound.  Repairing a driveway is hard work, but it is not impossible. To get the most life from your driveway, you should repair cracks as soon as they form, but if you are slow to make repairs, you can still save your driveway as long as the damage is not too extensive. To prevent future cracks from forming, make your repairs and then cover your driveway with a sealcoat.  Contact an asphalt contractor for more...

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3 Features To Add Sustainable Living To Your Custom Home

Posted by on Jul 23, 2015 in Uncategorized |

Building a new custom home can be a big challenge, and there are many features you may want to add. There are many things that you will want to consider, such as the plans, the type of wood to use siding, and the features to help you reduce energy costs. While you are building your home, it is the perfect time to add sustainable features and renewable energy. If you want a home that makes your life easy and has lower energy bills, here are some features you may want to add to your custom home: 1. Adding Renewable Energy To Your Home Design With technology available today, you can add many renewable energy resources. If you want these features to be incorporated in the design of your home, you may want to consider things like solar roofing shingles that do not affect the aesthetic appearance of your home. Wind can also be used to supplement solar energy. Vertical wind turbines can be hidden in structural features like cupolas, which can give your home a classic look with renewable energy. 2. Using Sustainable Features That Help Conserve Water There are also features that you can add to your home to help conserve water, and reduce water and sewer costs. You can add a rain collection system to your home that can provide you with water for many different needs. The tanks of the system can be buried when your home is built to keep the systems out of sight. If you have a septic system, you can also have a separate greywater tank for irrigation and other uses. You can also use greywater if you live in a drought area with water restrictions. 3. Using Designs That Reduce Energy Loss And Heating And Cooling Needs In addition to renewable energy and water conservation, you can also have features to help you save energy. When your home is built, you can have a design with wider framing that allows for more insulation. Other features like light colored roofing that reflects heat can also help to improve the energy efficiency of your home. You can also have continuous insulation systems installed to provide insulation all the way through your wall to reduce energy loss. If you are building a new custom home, these are some features that will make your home greener and help you save. You can get started with your new home by contacting a custom homebuilder like Old School Carpentry and talking with them about adding some of these sustainable features to your...

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Glass-Top Table Shattered? Don’t Head To The Furniture Store Just Yet!

Posted by on Jul 7, 2015 in Uncategorized |

You may not realize just how easy it is to repair a glass table on your own after the glass breaks. Usually, these tables are topped with single rectangular or circular piece of glass, which is affixed with silicone to the table body.  Getting your table looking as good as new or even better than before could take you less than a day. Cleaning Up The Mess First, you’ll need to remove the glass pieces from the table, including any shards still stuck in the caulk. Once the glass is all cleaned up, the caulk itself will have to come off so you can put the new pane on. Dab the silicone with a little water and slowly cut it away using a utility knife. If small patches of caulk remain, you can use a simple water and flour paste to wash the remaining silicone away. Getting Your New Glass The next step is to head to your local glass shop for a replacement pane. If you want a piece exactly identical to the one that broke, bring a shard of the old glass with you to show the glassworker. Otherwise, you might consider upgrading your table glass to be thicker, frosted, or have an etched design. If your old table was used during meals, consider asking about glass with improved heat- and impact-resistance.  Once you’ve decided what style suits your home, just give the glass shop your table’s measurements and they’ll cut you an appropriate pane. Make sure to have the edges sanded down to prevent injury when you handle the glass later.  Completing The Repair When you get the glass home, all you have to do is carefully apply new silicone to the table and slowly lower the new pane in place. Use a butter knife to remove any silicone that comes out of the cracks as the glass is placed. When the placement is done, refrain from using the table for a couple of days, which will give the caulk time to cure. Voila, in just a day of labor and errands, your glass-top table is as good as new. Breaking a glass-top table doesn’t mean you have to make a trip to the furniture store or go without. With a little elbow grease and help from professional glass cutters, you might be able to get your table back in shape in just a day. For more information, or if you would like professional assistance, contact South Jersey Glass & Door or a similar...

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3 Tips To Ensure Your Home Is Ready To Be Heated

Posted by on Jun 23, 2015 in Uncategorized |

As the weather is getting colder, you might be thinking about your heating system and how well it will heat your home this winter. The last thing that you probably want to deal with is a heater that isn’t working properly when the temperatures drop, so thinking about heating now is a smart decision. Luckily, following these three steps should help you gain peace of mind and should help keep your home nice and toasty all winter long. 1. Add Insulation First of all, you should consider adding more insulation to your attic if you haven’t done so in the past few years. Over time, insulation can begin to break down or can slide out of place, which can leave your home with less protection from the cold. Luckily, insulation can help create a barrier between your home and your cold roof, which can make it easier for your heating system to do its job. Not only can this help keep you warm, but it can also help you save money on your heating bills this winter as well. 2. Seal Up Your Home It’s a good idea to walk around and take a look at your doors and windows to determine if there are any cracks that you should be worried about. One great way to do so is to run your hand around your window casing and door casing to feel for temperature changes. Then, you can use caulk to seal up any cracks near your windows, and you can use weather stripping to help create a better seal around your exterior doors. Then you won’t have to worry about cold air seeping into your home and making it harder for your heater to do its job. 3. Have Your Heater Inspected To ensure that your heater is in good shape, it’s a good idea to have it checked out by a professional. A good HVAC technician can come and check out your heater, perform any necessary maintenance and ensure that it’s ready to keep your home well heated this winter. Then you can take care of any potential problems before the temperatures are cold outside and you are relying on your system. You can help ensure that your heater will run efficiently and won’t cost you too much in utility costs. Preparing to heat your home for the winter is a smart idea so that you won’t have anything to worry about when the temperatures plunge. Following these steps should help. For more tips, contact a professional like Smedley & Associates, Plumbing, Heating, Air...

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4 Ways To Stop Mosquitoes From Taking Over Your Yard

Posted by on Jun 10, 2015 in Uncategorized |

Far too many people are convinced that slathering themselves in chemicals or investing in dubious bug-zapping devices are the only way to keep mosquitoes at bay. While these methods can help, the best way to keep mosquitoes from taking over your property is to attack their breeding grounds. In most cases, this means eliminating sources of standing water where mosquitoes lay their eggs. Follow these four simple tips to control your local mosquito population and reclaim your yard. Clean Your Gutters Clogged gutters are the most commonly overlooked source of mosquitoes. Left unattended, water can easily collect in gutters, providing plenty of space for mosquitoes to thrive and multiply. In addition to cleaning your gutters on a regular schedule, take the time to repair any sections that are rusted or damaged, as this not only allows water to collect for mosquitoes to breed, but can also result in damage to your foundation. Extend downspouts if you spot water pooling at the bottom, and consider burying them underground and extending them all the way to the street if you have serious drainage or pooling concerns. Ensure Proper Drainage Ensuring your property slopes away from your house can prevent pooling, which discourages mosquito breeding and can prevent property damage. Most codes require your property to slope downward away from the home by 6 inches within the first 10 feet of area around the foundation. If your yard slopes toward your home, or doesn’t maintain adequate slope, contact a landscaping contractor for help. These professionals can add or remove dirt or add vegetated swales to get water moving away from your house and off of your property. Eliminate Containers Mosquitoes can breed quite happily in a container as small as a bottle cap filled with water. To prevent mosquito population explosion, eliminate all containers on your property that could catch rainwater, including trash, tires, toys, buckets, tarps and trash cans. If you can’t get rid of these items, take the time to go dump them out after a storm to keep water from collecting. Treat Pools and Ponds Some features on your property, like a swimming pool, pond or bird bath, are designed to collect water. Unfortunately, these objects can still serve as a breeding ground for mosquitoes. If the object is small, like a bird bath or wading pool, empty the water once a week to keep mosquitoes at bay. Monitor your pool’s chlorination level, which will control bugs, and use pumps or aeration devices to keep water moving in ponds or water features, which discourages mosquito breeding. Of course, controlling water to minimize mosquito breeding can only go so far; if you still find yourself plagued by mosquitoes after eliminating standing water on your property, consult a local pest control contractor, like Bug Busters Inc, to explore other options for mosquito...

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How To Decorate Your Children’s Bathroom

Posted by on May 28, 2015 in Uncategorized |

Are you moving into a brand new house, or are you redecorating the kid’s bathroom in your present home? Either way, here are some ideas that will help you make the room unique and attractive: Are You Decorating For Boys? – Think of decor that will last from childhood through young adulthood. One idea is to select a sport’s theme. Wallpaper with a baseball motif would be really cute. When the boys are little, you can frame pictures of cartoon baseball players. As the boys get older, those pictures can be replaced with framed posters of famous baseball stars like Babe Ruth, Stan Musial and Joe DiMaggio. Another idea is to select a patriotic theme that will never grow old. Decor that features vehicles like trains, boats, planes and cars is also timeless. And, for a charming touch, consider selecting antique vehicles for the theme.  Are You Decorating For Girls? – Asking your girls to help you decorate their bathroom will add to the fun. Consider going with pink and gray or pink and black for your colors. Wallpaper with pink poodles on it would be adorable. Choose pink towels and have them monogrammed in gray or black.   Another pretty idea is to use all of the colors in the rainbow and display towels of varied colors. No matter which colors you select, consider framing darling note cards in complementary colors and placing them in groupings on the bathroom walls. Will The Bathroom Be Used By Boys and Girls? – Besides selecting the decor, remember to provide attractive storage containers for hair dryers, electric razors, and personal toiletries.  A great choice for wall paint would be light green, eggshell blue, or very pale yellow. These colors will be with anything else you select for your decor.  Consider a movie theme, or one that depicts kid’s TV shows. Frame posters of the children’s favorite stars. Even as they get older, the pictures will bring back memories. Another decorating idea that would be appropriate for both boys and girls would be a beach theme. Framed posters of surfers, sail boats and other nautical things would be really charming.  ​Select A Shower Enclosure – A glass shower enclosure will be perfect for the children’s bathroom. Shower enclosures are not only safe, but they are affordable and they will last for a very long time. They are easily installed and easy to maintain. In fact, if you provide a squeegee for your kids, they’ll be able to wipe the shower enclosure down each time they bathe. For additional cleaning, simply use a product that is made especially for glass. Consider a design that includes towel bars for added convenience.  Have fun decorating your children’s...

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Plumbing Myths Debunked: Keeping Your Drains Clear, One Clog At A Time

Posted by on May 13, 2015 in Uncategorized |

There are a number of plumbing myths out there, and it is important to know how to properly care for your drains to keep the water flowing smoothly throughout your home. Even when a drain is working, a clog could be building up. Blocked drains create all kinds of water problems, including flooded toilets, and leaks that create a big mess under sinks. Here are a number of plumbing myths explained. You Can Clean Your Garbage Disposal With Lemons and Egg Shells While lemons in your garbage disposal might make your drain smell a little better temporarily, lemons aren’t going to disinfect the unit. Egg shells don’t help clean the blades either, but instead can cause blades to break or jam up with egg shell remnants. If you want to clean your garbage disposal thoroughly, unplug the unit and use a mild soap and water combination on the device. Let the cleanser sit in the disposal for a few minutes and then use a scrub brush to work the cleaner through. Rinse thoroughly with warm water and your disposal will be disinfected properly. As Long As the Water is Running, Anything Can Go Down the Disposal If you’ve ever put too many potato peels down your garbage disposal and gotten a clog, then you know that this myth is just not true. You can run the water all you want, but if the potato peels muck up the garbage disposal blades, they will not chop up into small enough pieces to go down the drain. Too many peels from fibrous vegetables will cause your disposal to clog. If you want to put peels down the drain, you have to chop them up into smaller pieces first. It’s a better idea to throw the peels in the garbage, or add them to a compost pile. The Drain Isn’t Getting Clogged Because It Still Works Not all drains clog immediately. Shower drains can slowly get clogged over time, from hair and soap scum. If you notice that your shower is starting to drain slowly, it’s time to call in a professional plumber like Lewis Plumbing to check out the clog. While your drain may still be working, a clog is building up that needs to be taken care of. The last thing you need is a drain that becomes completely clogged because you ignored the situation. Keeping your plumbing maintained, and ensuring that all drains are flowing freely will help alleviate the need for emergency plumbing...

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Fix Your Garage Floor This Spring!

Posted by on Apr 22, 2015 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Now that the weather is warming up, it’s time to get started on routine home maintenance. One of the small chores many homeowners neglect over time is the routine repair of the concrete garage floor. Concrete may seem durable and indestructible, but over time, it can become cracked and pitted — a condition known as spalling. Left untreated, spalled concrete can develop deep cracks that go all the way through the slab. As long as the cracks do not penetrate to the bottom of the concrete slab, concrete resurfacing is sufficient to repair the problem. If you’re a confident DIYer, you can repair the concrete in your garage. To resurface the concrete, follow the steps below. Clean the Concrete Use a power washer to spray down the concrete, removing grit and dirt. For areas of the concrete with caked-on grime, use a steel brush to wipe down the concrete first, then use the power washer to rinse the dirt away. Apply a Concrete Patch In a large bucket, mix the concrete patching material with water until the patch has a slightly stiff, peanut-buttery texture. Use a paint mixer stick to thoroughly mix the patching material. Next, use a trowel to spread the concrete over the garage floor. Fill in any visible pits and cracks, then use the straight edge of the trowel to make the patch level and even with the rest of the garage floor. Leave the patch to dry on the floor. Move on to the next step when the patch is sturdy and relatively hard. Apply the Resurfacer Pour the resurfacing material onto the newly patched concrete, then use a long-handled industrial squeegee to spread the material evenly over the entire concrete floor. Wait half a day or the amount of time specified by the resurfacing material manufacturer before walking on your garage floor again. This DIY project can be completed in one day, but some DIYers will have more trouble than others. For a more professional and longer-lasting resurfacing job, contact a professional like Mara Restoration, Inc. If your garage floor is severely damaged with deep cracks that go all the way through the slab, more extensive repairs will be necessary. Contact a contractor to find out more. Likewise, if you’re not sure how deep the cracks in your garage floor go, have a repair person come to your home to tell you if your garage floor is a candidate for...

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