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Welding and Other Construction Techniques

Winter Is Coming: 3 Tips For Winter-Proofing Your House This Summer

Posted by on Jul 31, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Winter Is Coming: 3 Tips For Winter-Proofing Your House This Summer

Although you may still be sweating through the dog days this summer, winter is coming, sooner than you think. Those cold winds will soon be blowing, and you’ll be wearing sweaters once more. So even when the air conditioner is still running strong, it’s time to think about winter-proofing your house. You need to take a break from summer fun and plan for the cold winter weather. Furnace Every year, experts tell you to have your furnace inspected, and every year you postpone making an appointment or neglect to make one at all. As a result, you may end up with a malfunctioning unit on Christmas Eve or on the coldest night of the year. Making an appointment in August means not having to fight for a slot in October. The average cost of a furnace repair is $262; however, a furnace inspection may catch potential problems before they fully develop. Also, the cost of a scheduled appointment may be significantly less than an emergency visit. Having the professionals in early is the best way to save money. Insulate and Caulk One reason people do not prepare properly for winter is that the tasks are hard and hot work. However, proper insulation and caulking has proven to have beneficial effects on your comfort level and your energy bill. Simply adding insulation to your attic can make a huge difference. Buying a few rolls and installing it yourself is an excellent investment of your time. Also, simply buying caulk and applying it inside and out cuts down on drafts and your energy bills. Pipes Insulating your pipes is another often-overlooked task. Simply applying insulated sleeves to your plumbing can help raise the temperature of your water by up to four degrees. Even this small improvement allows your to lower the temperature on your water heater, further reducing your energy expenses. This job can also be a sweaty task, but you’ll be glad you made the effort when the temperature falls below zero. You can contact a local plumber if you need professional help. Many people dread winter and try not to think about it until it arrives. If you’ve followed that strategy in the past, you know just how ineffective it is. This year, make it your task to follow expert advice and prepare for it properly. If you do, your heating and cooling bills will be lower and your comfort level higher. Also, your HVAC experts will thank you for planning...

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Want To Protect Your Wood Flooring During A Home Remodel? 3 Things To Keep In Mind

Posted by on Jul 14, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Want To Protect Your Wood Flooring During A Home Remodel? 3 Things To Keep In Mind

If you have hardwood flooring in your home and are beginning the process of planning a home remodeling project, you’ll need to make sure that you do your best to protect the hardwood floors. Hardwood flooring can quickly take a lot of damage, especially when you factor in the scratches from dirty shoes and tools and other abrasive materials that can be brought inside during home remodeling project. Before beginning any actual construction work in any room of your home, consider the following tips for protecting the hardwood flooring. Lay Down a Thick Tarp The simplest way to keep the hardwood flooring in your home protected is laying down a thick tarp. What this will do is provide a layer of protection in between the hardwood flooring and anything that gets in your home. If you’re hiring contractors to take care of most remodeling work, this can be especially important since the contractors will likely be wearing work shoes that can bring in grime and other debris that will scratch and damage the hardwood floors. When laying down a thick tarp, make sure that it covers the entirety of the rooms and is secured at the edging of the walls. Keep Most Construction Work Outside Many people make the mistake of bringing heavy-duty construction work inside the home during remodeling. This can include cutting pieces of wood to a smaller size or painting items that are portable. With this in mind, you should consider the potential damages that this can cause. Instead, look into keeping most of the construction work outside and then bringing the finished items inside so that there is less of a risk to your hardwood flooring. Budget for Cleaning and Polishing Afterwards Even with all the precautions made towards protecting your hardwood flooring, it will likely still get dirty unless the tarp has been laid down securely throughout the entire home. Dust is typically unavoidable, making it a good idea to budget for cleaning to be done afterwards. By getting the wood flooring cleaned after the remodeling work is done, you can make sure that your home sparkles and that you can be proud of the remodeling work entirely. Remodeling your home does come with a number of preparations since your hardwood flooring can quickly get damaged if you’re not careful. By knowing what’s involved in protecting the hardwood flooring in your home, you can get started with remodeling project and with the peace of mind that the floors will be kept safe. To learn more about floor refinishing, click the link or do an online...

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How To Know If It May Be Time To Replace Your Home Windows

Posted by on Jul 12, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on How To Know If It May Be Time To Replace Your Home Windows

As a homeowner, it is vital to make sure that you are well aware of when it is time to have the windows in your home replaced. To help you know when that is, you will want to check out the following signs of window trouble. You Notice Condensation Building Up You should not see condensation building up on the interior of your windows if they are in good condition. If you are noticing that there is a build up of water droplets or that there is frost on the inside of the window during the winter months, it is time for a replacement. Eventually, that moisture can seep into your window seal, window frame, or into the drywall or plaster that surrounds the window. This can cause mold to grow, which is a health hazard and it can cause you to have to replace many more building materials than just the window itself. The Windows Will Not Stay Open On Their Own It is not only nice to have you windows stay open on their own when you want them open, but it is important for the safety of everyone in the home. If you have to use books or boards to hold the window open, you need to have a professional come in to replace the window. Most likely, the weights within the window have broken and if they have broken due to age, it is most likely better to simply have the window replaced instead of trying to have it repaired. There Are Cracks In The Frame Of The Window If you are noticing that there are cracks in the frame of your residential window, big or small, you are going to want to have the window replaced. Those cracks can be letting in a lot of air from the outside. This can affect the cost of your heating and cooling bills as your HVAC system will have to work extra hard to combat all of the outside air that is making its way in. Remember, even if the cracks appear to be small in size, that can get a lot bigger before you know it so it is best to resolve the issue before it gets out of hand. With all of those signs of residential window trouble in mind, you should have no trouble deciding whether you need to call a window replacement professional (such as one from Southland Exteriors LLC) for new...

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5 Pieces Of Safety Equipment You Need When Constructing A Metal Building

Posted by on Jun 29, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 5 Pieces Of Safety Equipment You Need When Constructing A Metal Building

Metal buildings are often less expensive and easier to put up than traditional stick-frame buildings, but erecting a metal building still involves work. It’s just as important to keep yourself and everyone else involved safe when erecting a metal building as when building a non-metal building. Here are five pieces of safety equipment that will help you keep everyone safe. A Forklift or Crane You’ll need a forklift on-site to unload all the components of the building. They’re too heavy to unload by hand or with dollies, even if you have a bunch of people ready to help out. Of course, the person operating the forklift should be licensed to do so. If there are beams that are too large for a forklift, or if you’re erecting the building in a place that a forklift can’t access, then you’ll need to use a crane to unload the metal parts. Using a crane will significantly increase your construction costs. Renting a crane can run between $100 and $600 per hour, while a forklift can be had for just $100 to $700 per day. Work Gloves Everyone who is involved in putting up the metal building should have work gloves. Metal pieces can have sharp edges. Work gloves protect people’s hands, which are most at risk of being cut or scraped by a metal edge. Safety Harnesses Several people will have to go to the top of the metal building to secure the walls together and put the roof on. Even if the building is just one story, anyone who is up at roof height should wear a safety harness. When trying to finagle two metal components together, it’s easy to become unbalanced. A safety harness that’s properly secured to a stationary object will keep anyone from falling. Safety Goggles The different metal pieces will have to be screwed or riveted together. When putting screws and rivets on, little metal shavings can come off of metal components. Safety goggles protect people’s eyes from any shavings that go flying. Hard Hats Any time people are working on a construction site, they should be wearing a hard hat. Hard hats provide protection against anything that may fall, including tools, metal parts and screws. Accidents when constructing metal buildings aren’t common, but it’s important to always protect yourself and others from potential mishaps. Make sure you have the right equipment, and enough of it, to keep everyone working with you...

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Create A Home That Fits Your Needs When You Are Wheelchair Bound

Posted by on Jun 8, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Create A Home That Fits Your Needs When You Are Wheelchair Bound

When you have a handicap, day to day life can be more difficult for you if you do not have a home that accommodates your specific needs. If you need to use a wheelchair to get around in your home, consider having a custom home built that will suit your specific needs perfectly. The guide below walks you through a few features to consider for your perfect custom home. Consider the Height of the Countertops The first thing you need to consider when having a custom home created is the height of the countertops. You need to be able to do all of your meal prep at the countertops so having them built to a height that allows you to easily access everything from your wheelchair will make the preparation simpler. Consider the Bathrooms in the Home Next, you need to consider the bathrooms that you want to have created in the home. Consider having a shower made that has a flat lip on the side so that you can roll right into the shower without having to get out of your wheelchair. This will reduce the risk of you falling or getting hurt when you get into the shower to bathe. Consider the Doorways in the Home The width of the doorways in the home is something else you need to take into consideration. Be sure that the doorways will be wide enough for your wheelchair to easily fit through. Custom doors can be made to fit in larger doorways, if needed. Consider an Open Floor Plan Consider having an open floor plan created in your home so that you can easily maneuver around. An open floor plan allows you to entertain guests while you prepare a meal or see what is going on in another room, if you have children or pets. Having a custom home created is not overly difficult to do. You will need to sit down with an architect to design the home of your dreams and then meet with a contractor like C & Z Construction to discuss how the home can be created without going over your budget. Be sure that the quote that you are given to create your dream home includes the cost of labor and supplies. There are some contractors who charge you for supplies as the project is being completed. This can make it very difficult to track exactly how much you are spending on the home and could cause you to go over your...

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Staying On Top Of Your Elevator Maintenance

Posted by on May 24, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Staying On Top Of Your Elevator Maintenance

When your elevator isn’t working properly, your customers will experience quite an inconvenience. When the elevator is out of order it might cause your building occupants to become trapped. To prevent this from happening, you will need to proactively look for problems to repair and understand the condition of your elevator. Performing Regular Maintenance If you do not perform regular maintenance on your elevator, it will eventually have to be placed out of service. The best way to predict maintenance problems is to have your elevator inspected periodically by an elevator contractor. Elevators require that parts be examined, lubricated, and adjusted so that the elevator can operate safely. Other necessary steps include the following: A copy of the elevator inspection certificate must be posted The elevator must include a certificate of inspection, a serial number, and a signature of inspector The emergency telephone system must be operational The elevator lighting must be working properly The floor landings must be in good condition The door should be tested to make sure that it opens and closes properly The sensor must be operating properly While the elevator is in operation, it must not be producing any strange noises The call button for all floors must be working properly Following The Proper Standards The maintenance that you perform on your elevator should be done with the purpose of maximizing your safety. Elevator maintenance is governed by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME). There is a written maintenance control program for each device. Following this maintenance program can create a pattern of regular maintenance that can allow you to avoid safety issues. The manual for the Safety Code for Elevators and Escalators should be kept in a location that is easily accessible. Fixing Non-Functioning Doors The majority of elevator maintenance issues are non-functioning doors. To reduce the number of instances where you have a non-functioning door, consider getting a closed-loop door operator. This will reduce the cost of maintenance significantly by causing the door to open and close more smoothly and by causing the door to be more reliable. There is sometimes a simple reason for why an elevator is not functioning properly. For example, there might be trash or debris near the door sill that is disrupting the elevator. You should look to correct these minor problems before looking for more serious causes. Given the risks associated with an elevator that is not functioning properly, you will want to hand elevator maintenance over to professionals. The best place to look for qualified elevator contractors is the National Association of Elevator...

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Soil Building And Why It Is So Important To A Healthy Landscape

Posted by on May 6, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Soil Building And Why It Is So Important To A Healthy Landscape

The quality of your soil is the most important element in how well your landscape plants grow. Preparing the soil ahead of time for planting is a must, but the mistake most homeowners make is not regularly continuing the practice.  Healthy Soil is Rich in Humus Humus is the organic matter in your soil. Unfortunately, humus breaks down over time to where it no longer does its job. Once humus is gone, plants are less able to extract nutrients from the soil, meaning you must continually add more fertilizer. Instead of pouring chemical fertilizer into your soil, add more organic matter on a regular basis.  Healthy Soil has Healthy Beneficials The worst thing you can do to your soil is to kill everything in it. Non-discriminant use of pesticides and herbicides render your soil essentially dead and unable to support life without large amounts of added chemicals. Not all insects and fungi are harmful, in fact, fungal mycelium, the stringy white stuff you see growing in your bark mulch, play a large part in delivering nutrients to plant roots. They also break down organic matter to release the nutrients found inside and make them available to the plants. Some insects are also beneficial, and you should learn to distinguish the good from the bad. For example, wood roaches are sort of scary when they scamper about while you are gardening but they don’t eat your plants or damage your plant roots. They eat organic matter and help break it down just like fungal mycelium does. Healthy Mulch Makes Healthy Soil A 3-inch layer of organic mulch, such as leaves, pine straw or bark, controls weeds just as well as landscape cloth. Putting landscape cloth underneath your wood mulch keeps the decomposed bark from reaching the soil at all, in fact, removing wood mulch and replacing it every few years deprives your plants of beneficial organic matter. Skip the landscape cloth and simply add a light mulch layer as needed to keep it looking its best. Unhealthy Mulch can Damage Your Soil Some types of mulch that should be avoided are Rubber mulch – There is no real benefit to using rubber mulch in a garden. Advertising will tell you it doesn’t decay, but it is broken down by microbes like everything else. As it decays, it releases harmful chemicals into the soil that kill beneficial soil microbes and insects essential to healthy plant roots. Colored mulch – Made from discarded pallets and waste lumber, experts warn that it releases toxic chemicals into your garden.  Cypress mulch – Cypress trees are becoming endangered due to the overharvesting for the manufacture of mulch products. While its main selling point is termite resistance, a University of Florida study found this to be untrue. Without healthy soil, your plants will not grow as well and be more susceptible to harmful insects and diseases. Talk to your landscaper about ways you can build your soil once your plants are in place. Proper care will keep your residential landscape design looking...

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Strengths That Could Steer You Toward A Career As A Home Inspector

Posted by on Apr 19, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Strengths That Could Steer You Toward A Career As A Home Inspector

A licensed home inspector plays a pivotal role in the process of a house being sold. When a prospective buyer is enticed by a property, it’s often not until the home inspector has thoroughly investigated the house that the buyer can feel comfortable moving forward with the purchase. If you’re contemplating following a new career path and the vocation of home inspector has occasionally entered your mind, it’s important to evaluate your personal strengths and skills and see if they’re in alignment with this career. Here are some such strengths that could help you succeed in this type of career. Enjoyment Of Physical Work While a home inspector does spend time writing up the report to present to the prospective buyer and real estate agent, his or her job involves anything but sitting in an office all day. If you’re keen on doing some physical work, being a home inspector can suit you. This is a job that involves getting down on your hands and knees to check inside a crawl space, grabbing a ladder and climbing into the attic and even getting up on an extension ladder to check the condition of the roof. Self-Discipline Many home inspectors work for themselves, which can provide many benefits but also pose some challenges. Being an entrepreneur requires a high level of self-discipline — you need to be a self-starter who takes the initiative to meet with local real estate agents to form partnerships, advertise your services around town and set your own schedule. If you like the idea of working for yourself and know that you’re disciplined enough to do so, this career choice might be suitable for you. Meticulous Attention To Detail Being a home inspector is a job that requires you to have top-notch attention to detail. In addition to a thorough understanding of how homes are built, you need to be vigilant about detecting problems. This can often involve going the extra mile — emptying out a cabinet under the kitchen sink to ensure that the plumbing meets code, for example — and making sure that you do everything you can to identify any potential problems in a home. People Person Between dealing with real estate agents and prospective home buyers, you’ll spend a lot of time in the company of others. This means that it’s important to be a people person. You should have a calm, confident demeanor — people enlisting your services might be nervous about how the home will fare in the inspection, so your communication skills can help the people feel at ease as you perform your job. Contact a business, such as AIM Property Inspection, for more...

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Spring Cleaning Task How-To: The Fireplace

Posted by on Mar 31, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Spring Cleaning Task How-To: The Fireplace

The first day of spring has come and gone. If you are like most people, you have already been procrastinating your annual spring cleaning to-do lists. However, it’s time to get out your dust rags, rubber gloves, and mop and start getting dirty. While it may seem overwhelming, the truth of the matter is that these lists do need to get done, and there is a lot of ground to cover. There is the kitchen, the bathroom and even the closet, so you will want to break it all down into manageable tasks. So, why not start with an area of the home that you won’t be using until next winter? That’s right – the fireplace. Supplies You Will Need A couple of plastic drop cloths (or garbage bags) Plastic goggles Protective mask Rubber gloves Plastic bucket Garden hose Warm water Dish detergent Stiff-bristled scrub brush An old rag Shop-Vac Non-flammable metal polish (optional) Directions Start off by laying a plastic drop cloth or garbage bag down in front of the fireplace to ensure that your carpet and/or rugs are protected from any debris that may come out of the fireplace as you clean. Before getting started with the dirty work, put on your rubber gloves, plastic goggles and protective mask. In your plastic bucket, go ahead and get some warm water in it and add a little bit of dish detergent in it so that you already have warm soapy water ready when you need it. Remove the grates and fireplace tools from the area. Take them outdoors and use a garden hose to remove any dirt and grime build-up. You can use warm soapy water from your bucket and your scrub bucket if there is any build-up that is hard to remove. If you’d like to achieve a shine, you can use a non-flammable polish for metal. Back inside, take your scrub brush and use it to scrape off any of the build-up that has attached itself to the bottom and walls of the fireplace. Use your Shop-Vac to vacuum up the debris that has fallen. Now, thoroughly wash off your scrub brush so that there is no remaining soot or debris from the fireplace. Next, you will want to dip it in the warm soapy water so that you can scrub down the bottom and inside walls of the fireplace. Next, use an old wet rag and rinse the walls and floor of the fireplace with clean, non-soapy water. If you feel like this is too much of a chore for you or you just don’t have the time to do it, don’t hesitate to contact a professional to take care of it for you. For a custom fireplace, contact a company such as Alpine...

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Over The Edge — How To Know If An Infinity Pool Is Right For You

Posted by on Mar 8, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Over The Edge — How To Know If An Infinity Pool Is Right For You

If you’re looking for a truly breathtaking, unique pool for your backyard, look no further than the infinity pool. This modern invention can make over any space, adding drama and a sense of luxury or mystery. But, what is an infinity pool and is it right for you? Infinity Explained An infinity pool — sometimes called a zero-edge, vanishing or disappearing pool — has one or two sides slightly lower than the others so that the water overflows to create the appearance that there is no edge at all. This water flows over the low side into a catch basin where it is pumped back into the main pool and recycled. The effect is particularly stunning when combined with a high vista, natural water views (like the ocean or a lake) or some other kind of existing fantastic view.  It Can be Tricky While they are gorgeous and ooze luxury, infinity pools are not for everyone, nor are they for every home. Cost is one big factor for many pool owners due to special engineering requirements and design modifications. Obviously, building a pool with an extra catch pool and extra pump requirements will cost more. Additionally, the weir wall (the short wall with spillover) doesn’t have in-ground structural support and may require more work. Even the terrain on which you’re building the pool has different requirements, including the right angles to avoid seeing the catch basin and the right slope for gravity.  Is it Right for You? So, is an infinity pool right for your home? To answer that question, you should consider a few other questions such as these: What’s your view? If your available views don’t match well with the expansive and luxurious nature of the zero-edge pool, it may not be worth the extra money. In addition, if your backyard is filled with boring things that won’t reflect well in an infinity pool’s mirror-like surface, it may not have the impact you want. What’s the home’s style?  Installing an infinity pool in a rustic landscape or beside a traditional colonial or pueblo style home may cause the pool to stick out like a sore thumb. Conversely, the owner of a modern style home with views of natural water or even a desert expanse may find the infinity pool to be the icing on the cake.  Is your terrain right? Infinity pools have more structural needs and may require additional maintenance to keep them in good shape. If your area suffers from unstable terrain, storms or droughts, you may not want to risk damaging the ground or having nature damage your pool. Finally, is it in the budget? While vanishing pools are no longer limited just to luxury hotels, they are still an expensive project. An infinity pool may cost twice as much as a regular deluxe in-ground pool, so be sure your budget can absorb the extra expense and any overages that occur.  For more information, contact Nassau Pools Construction Inc or a similar...

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