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Monthly Archives: May 2018

Protect Home From Winter

The winter season brings with it challenges that aren’t purely seasonal in nature; the holiday season comes with a heavy increase in foot traffic around the house as people spend a lot of time indoors. This double effect can combine to do some real damage to your beautiful hardwood floors if you aren’t prepared. Let’s take a quick look at how the changing season can harm your flooring and how you can prevent this from happening.

Common Winter Elemental Damages

Gap formation: The air that your air-conditioning systems will be circulating throughout your home in the winter season is much drier than the type of air that circulates during the summer months. The effect this has on wood is that it causes it to slightly lose its moisture content, leading to the creation of small gaps where planks meet. You shouldn’t worry too much about this, as it’s to be expected. Once temperatures warm up, they will absorb a bit of moisture and return to normal.

Scratches and scrapes: Mud, salt, dead leaves, dirt, and snow can all combine to create unsightly scratches and scrapes on your floors once they are unintentionally brought into the house on the bottoms of boots and shoes.

Rot: If left to lie untouched for long enough, some of these winter elements can make their way into your flooring, causing the wood to rot. This is to be avoided at all costs, as serious cases might make it necessary to seek professional services to repair.
What Can I Do to Avoid Them?

Maintain temperatures: What leads to the creation of gaps in your flooring is the changing temperature levels and humidity. A good way to counteract this effect is to maintain your thermostat settings at a constant even temperature, avoiding turning your heat up and down.

Clean up: Regularly sweeping, mopping, and vacuuming your floors prevents the build-up of sludge and leftover snow that might eventually lead to rot.

Take the shoes off: Simply taking off shoes and boots before coming indoors will go a long way in avoiding most of the winter-borne floor difficulties. Before they come indoors, have your family and friends take note!

About Basement Renovation

Before a basement renovation you should:

1. Look for basement foundation cracks in home. Hairline cracks in the basement can be the fault of improper curing where as large cracks are most likely caused by settling. Both can be repaired with hydraulic cement if the crack is not active i.e. whatever caused the crack is no longer an existing problem. If the basement crack is still active then the crack patching may be re-opened later.

2. Look for basement moisture problems. Moisture problems may be tough to fix. Water is persistent and can make its way through the basement walls that are considered permeable. An easy way to test water problems is to tape a piece of aluminum foil to various places on the basement walls and floors. Seal the edges of the foil tightly and leave in place for several days. After several days, if moisture droplets appear beneath the foil then moisture is going through the basement masonry. If the moisture appears on top of the foil, the problem is condensation from basement humidity. Look for other water problems by looking in the underside of the basement’s first subflooring for signs of leaks. Fix any faulty pipes and fixtures. Look for brownish stains on the basement subfloor and sides of the basement joists. This will indicate active or an old leak that has been repaired. If the stain is spongy, an active leak exists.

Basement renovation planning is key to the success of your basement. For instance, if you decide you want a wetbar and/or bathroom, you will need to have the plumbing done first. This would be a top priority because the plumbing usually goes beneath the cement floor. After the plumbing is completed, you need to plan and install the electric which may include hiring a certified electrician. Your plans should include enough electrical outlets, telephone lines and cable hook-ups. These will be used for your television(s), lamp(s), computer(s), electronic games, and a computer modem. Once installed, you must decide on paneling, dry walling, or painting to cover your cement walls. Although paneling might be cheaper, the refined look of drywall makes it the material of choice for finished spaces. Paneling can look dated and does not always last long.

The next phase in your plans should be the stairwell. Some professionals suggest you should open up the stairwell and install a banister because a basement typically features stairwells that are enclosed. By opening up the basement stairwell you remove some of the basement like atmosphere. Some designers would like to see the doorways of the basement widened and employ arches and columns to dress them up. Examples include French Doors for privacy or a partial separator using decorative glass to add elegance to the basement room.

When looking at windows, if applicable, add as many as you can. Basements tend to be dark and gloomy but with more natural light it becomes a better and well lit area. If windows are very limited, look into security and use glass block windows. When it comes to artificial lighting, the choices are fluorescent lights, table lights, floor lamps and ceiling lights. If your budget allows, stay away from the fluorescent lighting since it is not the most appealing in design.

When installing the ceiling, stay away from suspended ceilings because they make the basement look like a basement. Consider using tray ceilings. When choosing the color for painting, use a light, bright, or dramatic color scheme. With these colors, you can turn that dark gloomy basement into a room that opens and brightens.

The basement floor is always cold since it is in direct contact with the ground. Look at having a subfloor between the concrete and flooring space. This will make it a warmer and dryer living area and a smooth surface for your carpet or flooring of your choosing. If a subfloor is not in your plans and you are using carpet, get plenty of padding to put under the carpet. Try to have a storage room added, maybe around the sump and furnace area. This would be convenient for all those things that can’t be thrown out. Think about adding shelves to this room to keep it fairly organized.

Advantages of Steel Buildings

Steel buildings offer many advantages. They are usually constructed much faster than buildings using other materials; the costs are usually lower compared to traditional building methods; they are lighter weight; they are easier to maintain; and they carry a reduced risk of fire. Moreover, steel is 66% recyclable, which makes it an especially cost-effective and environmentally sound alternative to any other construction material. Above all, strength is a major plus for steel. Steel structures can withstand unfavorable weather conditions such as hurricanes, high winds, heavy snow and even earthquakes. They are also resistant to termites, creeping, cracks, splitting and rotting, thus increasing durability.

Even though steel framed homes are still slightly more expensive than traditional wood-based buildings, savings from the fact that they are more energy-efficient and reduced maintenance make them an attractive alternative. Besides, they can be given a conventional look by covering them with traditional building materials like bricks, siding or stucco. There are various benefits such as lower insurance costs (since risk of fire is lower), lower assembly and labor costs, and decreased material costs due to prefabricated designing. Modern technologies have also influenced the growth of the steel building systems industry since it can be used for better design and fabrication.

Steel building products, including steel frames, are made of recycled steel. No less than 28% of steel frames are recycled steel, which can then be recycled in turn. This is better for the environment than wood, as it is estimated that a typical 2000-square-foot home uses the wood from around almost 50 trees. The same house, when built with steel, requires only about six scrapped automobiles.

Info of Leather Sofa Care

Some of these solutions come from regular household items and some are products you can buy.

Home Remedies

* Saddle Soap is an excellent way to soften tough leather. This leather conditioner has been around for hundreds of years when it was used by cowboys to keep saddles and other horse tack in good shape. It may not be the best thing for a leather sofa though.

* Vaseline is something everyone has laying around the house and it’s cheap. Dab a soft clean cloth into the gel and then work it into the leather sofa in small amounts until it feels dry. You will want to wipe the sofa with a dry cloth to remove any excess grease but the leather will absorb most of it. Try this on a small area first before doing the whole couch.

* Shaving cream has been a good standby for many people. You want to use shaving cream on a clean damp cloth, working it into the leather. You will be amazed at how quickly this softens your sofa.

* Mink Oil is a favorite for many people. You can find Mink Oil at just about any leather shop and is not very expensive.

* Lanolin is another natural ingredient that will work.

* A mixture of 500 g bag balm, also called milk salve and 100 ml of glycerin also makes a great home remedy if you have a lot of area to cover and a small budget to work with.