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Stylish Design Ideas for Your Concrete Patio

Posted by on 12:09 pm in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Stylish Design Ideas for Your Concrete Patio

Concrete lasts a long time with very little maintenance—you already know that. But did you know that when concrete does need some maintenance, it’s generally relatively simple to fix? What’s more, you can easily update an old patio with a concrete overlay. In other words, a concrete patio could easily last through the entire tenure in your house. As you plan your patio, don’t picture a simple concrete slab; instead, dream big about your patio’s design. Slate Patio Contractors can use preformed stamps to create stone designs in a concrete slab. They follow this up with a staining and dying procedure so that the slab resembles actual stone. According to the Landscaping Network, ashlar slate is one of the most popular designs for a patio. Slate pavers offer distinctive color gradations with subtle planing or cleavage. Consider having your patio made over in an ashlar slate pattern. Gray is the most common color, but the natural stone also comes in shades of brown, purple, red, and green. You could choose shades of one color for the body of the patio with a decorative border in a complementary color. Old-World Brick Another material that decorative concrete can mimic is brick, which is a traditional building material. Actual brick is expensive and requires some maintenance, including the replacement of broken bricks. You could get the look of brick with the stamping and staining process. What’s more, if you have brick in your house, contractors can match the color with the dying and staining. A brick patio looks attractive with any style of traditional home; consider pairing one with equally traditional wrought-iron furniture. Terraces You probably picture wood when you think of backyard terraces. While wood is a common material for such a design, concrete can make an attractive addition. Because contractors pour the concrete, they can design any shape that fits into your backyard—including freeform. Consider having your patio stamped and stained to resemble natural stone. Plan the levels to coincide with chosen views or with different activities. For example, have one terrace be your dining patio, have another for sunbathing, have another for enjoying the view, and so on. Patio Bistro Along those same lines, perhaps you don’t have a lot of space for a patio but still want to dine outside. A patio bistro answers this call. Typically such a patio accommodates a bistro-sized table and just a couple chairs. You can add a fountain and some landscaping around the patio for a secluded dining spot. If space is really limited, have the concrete poured into a circle just big enough to accommodate the table and chairs. Such a charming bistro would be well-served by a concrete slab stamped and stained to resemble cobblestone, as at your favorite Mediterranean café. Utilize decorative concrete for a patio that complements your house and your outdoor...

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How To Refinish Your Bathtub

Posted by on 11:51 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on How To Refinish Your Bathtub

An unsightly bathtub can make your bathroom look less than beautiful. Even if you try to hide it with a pretty shower curtain, that bathtub can still bring down the appeal of your bathroom. Taking it out and replacing it may not be an option for you, but, if your bathtub is still in good shape, you can refinish it to give it a new and updated look. The best part is you can try your hand at refinishing it yourself at home. See below for a few bathtub refinishing tips. Here’s What You’ll Need: Sandpaper (400 – 600 grit) Screwdriver Utility knife and razor blade Bathroom cleaner Scrub brushes Paintbrush/rollers Bathtub refinishing kit Painter’s tape Instructions: You’ll start by taking out the old bathtub hardware, including the drain and drain switch. These will leave dirt behind, but that’s OK, as your next step is cleaning the tub. Also take out any old caulking from around the tub. You want a clean space to work with. Use the razor blade to help remove any caulking that is stuck on the tub. Use your bathroom cleaner and clean your bathtub like never before. Pay special attention to the drain area and remove rust spots with a rust removing cleaner. Take the sandpaper and sand down the entire bathtub, including the top and outside areas. When finished, rinse the tub out and wipe it dry. Once it’s dry, you can tape off the edges of the bathtub. Tape around the top edge and the front near the floor. Using the refinishing kit, follow the manufacturer’s directions to prep the paint. Then begin cutting in the refinishing paint around the edges of the tub with a paintbrush. Use the roller to go over the rest of the bathtub.  Allow the first coating to dry, and add a second coating if necessary. To give the face of your bathtub a new look, instead of using the refinishing kit on the front, you can use air stone. Air stone is a lightweight stone-looking material that is very easy to install. You can find it at most larger hardware stores. You can also add beadboard to the face of your bathtub along with trim to give it a built-in look. Refinishing your bathtub can be done yourself, but does take some work. Contact a professional refinishing company like Carefree Koatings for more tips or to have your bathtub refinished by a professional if this seems like too much work for...

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Four Ways To Increase The Space In Your Bathroom

Posted by on 10:32 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Four Ways To Increase The Space In Your Bathroom

There are many reasons why adding a bathroom can be beneficial for your home. Not only does it provide your family more space in the house, but it can also increase your home’s value should you decide to sell it later. In fact, a half bath can increase the value of your home by 10.5%, while adding a full bath can increase the value of your home up to 20%, according to the National Association of Home Builders. In order to retrieve this amount, you want to make sure you are making the best investments to your bathroom regardless of the amount of space so you get the most for your money. Here are some tips for getting the best use of space in your bathroom.  Bring in Some Mirrors Mirrors are a great way to trick the mind into thinking the space is bigger than it really is. Standard builder’s mirrors are usually frameless and boring. To help add a little spunk to the bathroom, you may want to frame the mirror using a decorative frame. This can turn your mirror into artwork. Try to position the mirror across from a window instead of angling it towards a door. This will help provide a better scenery in the reflection and also trick the eye into thinking there is more space in the room.  Skip the Shower Curtain Instead of using a shower curtain for privacy to your shower and bathtub, opt for a glass shower enclosure instead. This removes the separation that a shower curtain offers and helps open up the bathroom so that it looks bigger. You can typically find a glass shower enclosure for around $900 to $1300, depending on the style. Talk with contractors or visit websites like http://www.centralglassutah.com for more options. With a shower curtain, you may have to replace it several times as your decor changes, but a glass shower enclosure will go with any color scheme.  Create Niches in the Wall In an effort to add more space to your bathroom so you can get around easier, one option is to create niches in the wall so you can store accessories in them. This is especially ideal for the shower area, as it is able to hold the soap and shampoo bottles. You can place extra towels and toilet paper in these niches rather than occupying all the storage space.  Choose Open Cabinetry Open cabinetry offers dual purposes as it allows you to store items and provide decor for the bathroom. When doing this, you want to be very organized since it will all be seen. Open cabinetry helps free up space in the closet as it provides you storage for your...

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4 Tips For Dealing With “Honeydew” On Your Trees

Posted by on 6:07 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 4 Tips For Dealing With “Honeydew” On Your Trees

If you’ve recently walked out to your yard only to discover your tree leaves and limbs are covered with a sticky, unpleasant substance that drips to the ground, you have a honeydew problem on your hands. Honeydew is a substance (similar in consistency to honey) secreted by tree aphids, so its presence indicates an aphid problem. Not only does honeydew create a nuisance and attract unwanted insects like ants, but aphids can do serious damage to your trees if left unchecked. Here are four tips for dealing with honeydew and the aphids that cause it: Start with a Thorough Hosing Off For smaller aphid infestations, you may only need to use your garden hose to get rid of the bugs. A strong blast of water from your hose will knock the aphids off your leaves, and once aphids are forcefully removed from a tree they are typically unable to climb back up. Try to Introduce Ladybugs Ladybugs are considered a beneficial insect as they do not harm plant life and are a natural predator for aphids and other pests. You can actually purchase ladybugs online and then place them on the trees that have aphids. To keep them around, make sure they have access to some of the plants they need to create nectar. Options include clover, dill, and any kind of mint. Use Insecticidal Soap Insecticidal soap is typically just pure soap (without perfumes or additives) diluted in water which is then sprayed onto your trees. The soapy water suffocates and kills aphids and other pests, without harming beneficial insects like ladybugs or harming your tree. You can purchase insecticidal soap at any major garden center, or make your own at home. For larger trees, you may need to hire professionals since you are unlikely to reach the entire tree, even with a good ladder and spray bottle.  Keep Ant Populations Under Control Ants and aphids have a mutually beneficial, reciprocal relationship with ants protecting aphids from their natural enemies and eating the honeydew. If you reduce the number of ants in your yard, the aphid population will also dwindle. One effective way to do this is to locate ant hills in your yard and pour boiling, soapy water into them. By following these tips, you will soon have your aphid and honeydew situation under control. Be sure to call a tree service if your trees are heavily infested with aphids and these remedies don’t work. Visit http://smittystreeservice.net/ for more...

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Tips For Cleaning Your Home’s French Drain

Posted by on 7:06 pm in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Tips For Cleaning Your Home’s French Drain

If you have trouble with water accumulation around the foundation of your home, one of the best things you can do is invest in a French drain system. French drains are constructed from perforated pipe systems that allow water to filter down and run away from the house. You can install the drain pipes to route water where you want it to go. If you opt for French drain installation, you’ll want to plan to clean it at least once a year if not more often. Here are a few tips to help you keep it clean. Starting With A Pipe Flush The first step to clearing out your French drain pipes is to flush the system out. Put the open spout of your garden hose into the French drain opening. Then, turn the water on at a moderate pressure level. Let the water run through the drain line, following it along the path to make sure that everything flows properly. If you don’t see water running out the drain outlet, that’s a telltale sign that you have a clog in your drain pipe. You’ll need to be more aggressive to get rid of clogs. Increasing Pressure Sometimes all you need is a little bit more pressure behind the water in the pipes in order to clear a clog. Rent or buy a pressure washer so that you can introduce a higher pressure flow. Once you put the pressure washer nozzle in the French drain pipe, make sure you stand off to one side when you turn it on. If you’re too close to the back of the nozzle, water could splash back from the pipe and spray you. Adjust the angle of the nozzle as it sprays so that you can clear any debris that’s building up inside the pipes. If a pressure washer isn’t enough to get it done, you may need to snake the pipe. Snaking The Pipe Pipe snakes are a great way to take the resolution directly to the clog in the pipe. You can buy or rent a snake, then run that snake directly into the French drain pipe. Work the snake into the pipe up against the clog, then turn the water on so that you get some water pressure in the system. This will break up the clog and flush the debris away so that you restore water flow through the pipe. Keeping a French drain system clean is important to protecting your home’s foundation from water damage. With the tips here, you can clean the pipe system on your own. If you’re not comfortable doing it, reach out to a local contractor to help you get the job done...

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3 Tips To Help You Get The Most Out Of A Basement Remodel With Structural Changes

Posted by on 5:13 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 3 Tips To Help You Get The Most Out Of A Basement Remodel With Structural Changes

If you have an unfinished basement, this can be valuable space for your home that you are missing out in. It may be that structural challenges have limited what can be done in your basement. Today, with engineered structural lumber, you can have greater spans and open space in your basement. There are a few things to consider when remodeling your basement, and getting the most out of space. Here are some tips to help you make the structural changes in your basement remodeling project: 1. Draw A Rough-Draft With Several Versions Of Potential Basement Designs There are many different ways to change the look of your basement, and you may want to have several options to choose from. Draw a layout of the current structural elements, such as beams, wall framing and exterior foundation walls. You can use this as a base to draw over with different options for your remodeling project. You may want to consider using a free layout software to create these sketches and get a basic idea of options in your basement. 2. Use Columns To Break Up Design And Keep Costs Of Structural Changes Down One of the main goals with making structural changes in your basement may be to open space, but this can be costly with large spans of beams. Consider adding columns to the design, such as at the end of a bar or at the location of furniture. When doing drawings of the design of your basement, add elements like cabinetry and furniture to the design. Doing this will help you decide what you want to do with your basement remodeling project and save money by adding a couple of columns to the design. 3. Consult A Structural Engineer For Ideas And Approval Of Your Basement Design Any time you make structural changes, they have to be approved by a building inspector. A structural engineer can give advice on different things you can do to change the look of your basement and make changes to the structure. They can also sign architectural drawings to get approval when you have your remodeling project inspected. These are a few tips to help you with making structural changes to your basement. These are some tips that can help you with the structural changes you are considering when remodeling your basement. If you need help with deciding on what can be done, contact a structural engineer to help with the design of these...

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Faqs About Garage Door Openers

Posted by on 12:26 pm in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Faqs About Garage Door Openers

Buying a new garage door opener is a bit more complex than you probably realize. There are a wide variety of doors that perform differently. If you choose the wrong door, you can face a host of problems later, including the door refusing to open. Here are some questions to answer before while shopping for a new garage door opener.  What Are Your Garage Door’s Measurements? One of the most important steps you need to take before shopping for a new garage door opener is measuring your garage door. The size of your door will dictate how much horsepower your opener needs to have. If you have too little horsepower, the opener could strain to open the door, which could mean a complete breakdown later.  Garage door opener horsepower ranges from ½ horsepower to 1 horsepower. If you have a heavy door, an opener at the highest range would be most efficient.  What Is an Acceptable Noise Level? There are three main types of garage door opener drives. Each drive has a different level of noise that comes with it. For instance, a belt-drive opener is relatively quiet, but it costs more than the other types of drive.  A chain-drive is the noisiest, but it is usually less expensive. A chain-drive could be an option if your garage is not located near a room where quiet is needed. For instance, if there are no bedrooms near the garage, this could be ideal.  A screw-drive opener is also noisy, but not as loud as the chain-drive opener. However, this type of opener also offers an easy installation. What Safety Features Do You Need? Unfortunately, accidents have happened with garage doors that resulted from them closing prematurely. To address this issue, some doors were equipped with safety features that can help regulate their closing and opening.  For instance, sensors on the door can prevent it from closing if someone is standing under it. If someone does walk under the door as it is closing, the safety feature will stop it.  Another safety feature is the keypad. Some garage door openers come with a keypad, while others give you the option of adding one later. However, finding a keypad that is compatible with your opener can sometimes be challenging. To avoid this, buying a garage door opener that includes an opener could be beneficial. Consult with your garage door contractor to determine if there are any other specific features you should consider when purchasing your opener and other components. Visit http://www.planooverhead.com for more information.    ...

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2 Steps To Help You Construct A Successful Water Well

Posted by on 6:39 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 2 Steps To Help You Construct A Successful Water Well

Having access to a reliable water source is important. If you want to take advantage of the natural groundwater that exists on your property, you will need to construct a well in order to access water reserves below the Earth’s surface. Here are two steps that you should be taking prior to digging to ensure that your next well is successful. 1. Identify the right spot. Placement is a critical component when it comes to the success of your water well in the future. Identifying the right place to dig can be a challenge, but there are some characteristics that you can look for as you search for the right spot to help make the process a little easier. You should begin your search by looking for an area that stays lush and green throughout the year. This could indicate that there is an aquifer (an underground area where water is stored) below the surface. You should also try to find a spot for your well on ground that is higher in elevation than the rest of your property whenever possible. This will help to prevent contamination from runoff water in the future. 2. Invest in sample boring. Boring can be a valuable tool when it comes to selecting the perfect location to dig your well. Once you have located an area that looks promising, you should have a specialist bore out a small hole to test the potential fill rate of a well that will be built on that site. The average home will need between 150 and 300 gallons of water per day, and water demands often come simultaneously or within a short period of time. You will want to ensure that your well has the ability to fill fast enough to accommodate shower for each of your family members in the morning, and the ability to provide water for both laundry and the dishwasher simultaneously. By boring a sample hole and monitoring the fill rate, you will be able to determine which location is most suitable for your water well before spending a lot of money to actually dig out the well. Companies like Coonse Well Drilling & Pump Co Inc may be able to help meet your needs in this area. Finding ways to simplify the well-digging process should be a top priority. Taking the time to identify a suitable location based on geologic features and boring a sample hole to evaluate the fill rate will help you dig the most successful water well possible to service the needs of your...

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Check These Things If Your Garage Door Isn’t Working Right

Posted by on 3:54 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Check These Things If Your Garage Door Isn’t Working Right

Your garage door is something that you expect to open and close each day. If it doesn’t work properly, that could make your home and belongings less secure and critters and pests may make their way inside. Luckily if you notice something wrong, there may be an easy fix that you can take care of right away. Here are common problems you may be able to handle before you get in touch with a repair contractor.   Loose Metal Pieces Loud, unusual sounds can strike fear into your heart; you may think the door has a serious, expensive problem. Before you get too nervous, take a look at the track on the edges of your garage door. Sometimes loud noises are caused by loose brackets and screws that simply need to be tightened. Using a screwdriver, make your way along the track, tightening as you go. Your garage door may quieten again. Misaligned Sensors As a safety feature, many modern garage doors are equipped with sensors that sit along the bottom of the door to ensure that the door doesn’t come crashing down on people, animals or belongings. The sensors are typically facing each other and an infrared beam lies between them; if the beam is interrupted by a body or an object, the door is unable to close. You may panic when your garage door stops closing, but all you might have to do is to take a close look at those sensors. It could be that one of them was knocked out of alignment with the other and needs to be set right again. Broken Remote Control If your garage door no longer opens or closes when you press the remote, it’s easy to think of a number of problems that could be the reason. The problem may be with the remote control itself and not the door at all. Before you start to worry, ensure that the batteries are not depleted. If that doesn’t work to rectify the problem, look into the battery well to determine whether the batteries have leaked. You might have to get a brand new remote if that has happened. If you find that these fixes don’t seem to help your garage door, there may be a more serious problem that needs to be handled by an expert. Call a repair contractor (such as one from All Pro Quality Garage Doors, Inc.) to ensure that your garage door can be functional and safe again.  ...

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Troubleshooting Furnace Electrical Issues

Posted by on 5:01 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Troubleshooting Furnace Electrical Issues

Not all furnace trouble is created equal. Most homeowners are equipped to change a filter or figure out and repair minor issues with the thermostat. The problem is when an electric furnace begins blowing fuses in your breaker box. The following can help you diagnose the cause of the electrical problem and decide whether it’s time to bring out a professional. Issue #1: Overheating A clogged filter is the most common cause for overheating in your furnace. If the fuse tends to blow or the breaker trips after the furnace has been on for awhile, it’s time to shut it off and check the filter. Don’t just simply change the filter. Instead, use a shop vacuum to vacuum out the filter slot in case there is any loose dirt clogging the works. Once cleaned out, put in a new filter and flip the breaker back to the on position. If overheating was the cause, you shouldn’t have any more issues. Issue #2: Water Shorts Furnaces are often tucked away, such as in a basement, a crawl space, or out in a garage. While most garages are relatively dry, basements and crawlspaces can be prone to moisture and leaks. This can lead to dangerous shorts in the furnace. If you notice dampness near the furnace and if the breaker trips or fuse blows whenever the furnace tries to cycle on, disconnect it until you can have a trained electrician out for repairs. A water short can create a fire hazard and an electrocution hazard, so don’t attempt to fix it yourself. Issue #3: Faulty Wiring Furnaces have blowers and motors running, which means there are some vibrations within the unit. This can result in loose or frayed wires over time. When this happens, there can be shorts that occur at any time when the furnace is running, or the furnace may simply refuse to turn on. Having the furnace inspected annually by a technician can help catch issues with the wiring before the furnace breaks down or becomes a hazard. If you suspect loose wiring, shut down the furnace until you can have it inspected. Issue #4: Blow Motor The blower motor is the hardest working part of your furnace. A failing motor will cause the fuse to blow or the breaker to trip each time it cycles on. This is another problem that can be caught and repaired early if you schedule regular inspections. Otherwise, you will need to power down the furnace until you can get an electrical service technician out to replace the...

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