Category Archives: Home

How to Increase Your Water Heater Efficiency

Repairman Inspecting Water HeaterWhen it comes to water heaters, efficiency can be the difference between a regular bill and huge heating costs. An inefficient water heater will drain your cash and impact the environment negatively. The good news is that you can boost the efficiency of your commercial or domestic water heater.

According to the figures released by the Australian Department of Energy, water heating accounts for about 25% of a household energy use. There are only two ways to reduce water heating costs: to heat less water or boost the efficiency of water heating systems. Whether you are using an electrical or gas central heating system, these tips will help boost efficiency.

Remove sediments

Clean your water heater to remove sediments and impurities that may be affecting the boiling process. To remove residue, turn off the cold water valve, place a bucket beneath, and turn on the hot water valve. Wait for the tank to lose pressure before removing sediment. This process can be complicated and is, therefore, best done by a professional.

Install efficient faucets and showers

Showers and leaking faucets account for a huge percentage of water loss in homes. Install a low flow showerhead to reduce water output in the shower. You should also conduct regular checks on faucets to ensure that they are in a good working condition. You should also fix or replace any leaking pipes and faucets.

Insulate water pipes

Pipes have a responsibility to transport water from the tank to the shower and faucets. If they aren’t appropriately insulated, showers can lead to loss of heat. Make sure to insulate pipes and water heater tanks to keep water warm, resulting in more heated showers and low bills.

Heating expenses make up a large part of your expenditures on utilities. However, these large heating bills may be as a result of an inefficient water heater. Taking that extra step to make your water heater more efficiency could leave you with more money after paying your bills.

Lawn Mower on Grass

Seasons of the Lawn: Why Year-Round Lawn Maintenance Matters

Lawn Mower on GrassLawn care is one of the most important house maintenance services — Utah homeowners know this. But, the lawn care routine you have for the summer may not be the best idea when winter comes along.

Keep in mind that lawn weed control in your Utah home varies depending on what the season is. Here are the things that you have to focus on during specific months of the year:

Summer

The dry heat of summer days may disrupt the moisture levels that keep your backyard grass, plants, and trees green and healthy. So, during summer, remember to fertilize, watch for weeds, and water regularly. Don’t deprive your lawn of the moisture it needs.

Fall

The end of summer doesn’t mean your lawn care routine should end. In fact, you have to be more attentive than ever to make sure the lawn remains healthy until spring comes along. During this season, remember to mow the lawn and aerate the soil. Get rid of fallen leaves that tend to suffocate grass and breed fungal diseases. Also, fill in any bare spots of lawn that may have dried out in the previous season.

Winter

You don’t really need much lawn care during winter. All the work — aeration, fertilization, and mowing — occur during the fall, before everything freezes over.

Spring

If you – or your lawn care provider –  are meticulous with maintenance late in the fall, then you won’t have much to worry about during spring. But, of course, you still need to watch for weeds, check the moisture levels, and keep the soil fertilized.

A beautiful lawn is the result of a comprehensive lawn maintenance routine. And, a comprehensive lawn maintenance routine is the result of sufficient knowledge on what the plants, shrubs, and trees in your backyard need throughout the year.

Get in touch with your local lawn care provider to educate you on this and to help you come up with an effective plan to keep your lawn healthy and boost your curb appeal.

4 Tips on Making Your House Cozier 


a girl feeling comfortableYour home should be the most comfortable and safest place for you and your family. However, due to busy schedules, people tend to overlook some of the important tasks to keep their homes organized.

To help you out, here are a few basic steps to make your homes more harmonious and peaceful after a long exhausting day at the office:

Setting the Tone of the Entryway

Make your home more inviting by setting the tone of the door. The key here is to keep it simple and organized. Remove all unnecessary objects that can cause obstruction to the hallway. Focus on the main focal point or the centerpiece. If you’re adding items such as decorative baskets or indoor plants, place them in the corner.

Choosing the Right Color and Wallpaper Designs

Choosing the right wallpaper or paint color can pull out some tricks to make the area look more spacious. When doing this, focus on the farthest point of view. Most interior designers recommend using bold and accent colors to highlight the best features of the main areas like the living room or the kitchen.

Improving Air Circulation and Room Temperature

Airflow and room temperature are important in making your home more comfortable and relaxing. Make sure the main appliances like the air conditioner and heating system are working efficiently. Consider looking for reliable HVAC repair services in Utah. Upgrade room vents and add exhaust fans if necessary.

Making the Home More Functional

There’s nothing wrong in adding decors to your home as long as they are also functional. Be resourceful and practical when looking for furniture. For example, instead of getting bulky storage cabinets, try installing wall-mounted shelves. This saves up more space and improves curb appeal.

Following these basic steps is a good start to making improvements to your home. For better results, consider hiring a professional home builder or interior designer.

Smiling architects in the room

Why Do You Need to Hire an Architect?

Smiling architects in the roomBuilding your home is one of the most expensive investments you will ever make in your life. And it will not be cheap, from construction materials to labour costs, so design flaws can cause major setbacks on your budget.

Here are more benefits of hiring an architectural company such as scenarioarchitecture.com that offers full architectural services.

Build a Unique Home

When you are looking into building a new home, there are many options available to you such as modular homes or prefabricated homes produced in warehouses, which builders deliver and install on site.

However, if you want a one-of-a-kind home that fits your personality and lifestyle, you will need the help of an experienced architect to design the perfect home for you.

Knowledge and Experience

You may opt to design your home or have a friend do it for you to avoid the fees of an architect. However, designing a home is not as easy as you may think. DIY design plans are susceptible to design flaws and errors which can be very costly to fix once already implemented.

Architects, on the other hand, have undergone extensive training when it comes to designing homes. They also have the training knowing how to use passive solar techniques properly to control the light coming through the day to help maximise your comfort while reducing the need for electricity.

Maximise Your Budget

The quality and finish of your home will largely depend on the materials used. However, that does not mean that you always have to choose the most expensive ones. An architect can help guide you through the drawbacks and benefits of the different materials available so you can make the best choices without going over budget.

Another key benefit of hiring an architect is that they can handle contract negotiations for you. Architects can help you choose the best contractor and weed out the bad ones by reviewing their credentials.

They will also keep a keen eye on the accuracy of the design implementation from the beginning until the end of the construction process.

Rodent Control: Which Method Should You Use?

two rodentsWhether you are focused on ridding your house of rodents, or you are thinking ahead to avoid a rodent issue, there are plenty of ways to deal with vermin.

Mice and rats are resourceful invaders and prove difficult to eradicate. If rodents are smart, you need to understand their characteristics and behavior to deal with them effectively. If you live in Boca Raton and have a problem with rat control, here are different types of rodent and how to deal with them:

Norway rat

This type is common in the USA and is recognized by its thick heavy body and a flat nose. They are difficult to get rid of as they are extremely cautious and hardly move beyond a 30 feet radius from their nesting area. They are also highly intelligent and tend to outsmart basic rodent traps. They prefer hiding in moist and dark areas such as basements. Therefore, the most efficient method to kill the Norway rat is with rodenticide or the use of an ultrasonic rodent repellent.

Roof rat

This species has a long and slender body with a sharply pointed nose; most of the time, the roof rat is mistaken for a mouse. They are extremely good climbers; in most cases, they sneak into the roof through downpipes and under the eaves to nest in the attic. Popular methods used to get rid of these rodents include traps, rat poison, glue or sticky boards.

House Mouse

This breed has a small body but has a tail longer than its body length. Unlike the other two rat types, a mouse will explore the territory and leave its nest to look for food. They are likely to nest in the pantry, the kitchen, or any other dry place that has access to food. Mice can be poisoned, trapped or kept away by keeping a cat or dog in the house. Be careful not to lay traps or poison that your pets can find.

Dealing with vermin is rarely a pleasant experience, so it is safer and more effective to bring in professionals. Once you’ve had a professional assessment and got rid of the problem, there are various ways you can prevent the rodents coming back.

Rodent control is the skill of using different tools available. After dealing with the initial problem you need to think of methods to ensure your house doesn’t again become an attractive nesting ground.

Feeling Stressed? Here’s How to Make Your Home a Safe Haven

Happy FamilyAccording to the American Psychological Association, 61% of Americans suffer from work-related stress. After a long, hard day at work, all most people want to do is come home and relax.

Unfortunately, many people do not experience relief this stress when they walk through the door for many reasons. Luckily, it is possible to make your home more of a stress buster.

Make sure the space is clean.

A way to make your space is stress-free is to ensure it is clean. Clutter in your home can increase your body’s production of cortisol — a stress hormone. In other words, the more clutter that surrounds you, the more stressed you feel.

Fortunately, you can get rid of clutter and with the help of a cleaning company in South Jordan.

Let go of the chores.

Everyone stresses over household chores. When you walk into your house from a day at work, you start worrying about what to make for dinner. After that, you worry about cleaning up the kitchen and taking care of other tasks in need of attention.

Do not rush to complete household chores. Let a few messy dishes sit in the sink for 15–20 minutes while you sit down and take a breather. The dishes will still be there later, and you need the break for mental clarity.

Add more light and comfort.

Change up the space in your home. Find one space — whether it is a living room or a bedroom — where you would like to relax. Create a relaxing space so that it is as stress-free as possible.

Add some lighting, so the space is not dark and gloomy. Spruce the space up with comfortable pillows, throws and a place where you can kick back and relax.

If you follow each of the tips above, you can enjoy a comfortable, stress-free home in no time. You will find that your mind and body will thank you for the positive changes as time goes by.

ring floater floating on a pool

Swimming Pool Categories: Which Option Suits You Best?

ring floater floating on a poolIf you are looking for ways to spend more time with your family, relax and even exercise, then a swimming pool is worth considering. Not only will a pool offer these benefits; it will also improve the look of your backyard. There is a wide variety of choices in swimming pool construction.

The ideal pool construction depends on your soil type, needs, space, and budget. The three major pool construction categories depend on their relation to the ground. Dolphin-pools.com gives us an in-depth look at these constructions.

Above-Ground Pools

Manufacturers make these pools from prefabricated materials. Their kits are professionally installed, and then plumbing, electrical, filtering and pump systems are fixed. Above-ground pools are inexpensive, take the shortest time to construct and are portable. They are however not very durable.

Semi-Buried Above-Ground Pools

These pools are also made from prefabricated kits but still require some excavation for installation. They have insulated wall panels, which manufacturers design to combat the ground force pushing on the pool walls to keep it from collapsing.

Installation of semi-buried above-ground pools only takes 3–5 days, but you cannot have them relocated.

In-Ground Pools

These are the most common. In-ground pools are installed into the ground and are constructed from scratch. Though expensive to build, they are the most durable and have a broad range of designs and features, which you can have customized to meet your needs.

Fiberglass, vinyl, and concrete are some of the types of in-ground pools you could opt for. The installation time for an in-ground pool depends on its features and construction material.

Regardless of your choice among the three pool types, you should always follow the rules and regulations for safety and also adhere to proper maintenance.

An essential part of maintenance involves the addition of chemicals to sanitize and balance your pool water. You can, however, opt for an automatic pool chemical distribution system to take the hassle out of this task.

How to Plan for your Long Distance Move

Man sealing a cardboard boxMoving houses can be very stressful, let alone moving to a whole new city or state. You would have to plan your move carefully especially if it entails a lot of fragile items, which is why experts at Colonial Van Lines will give you some tips on how to properly arrange your long distance move.

How do I Downsize my Home Items?

Most moving companies will charge you based on the total weight of the items that need to be shipped. Before packing all of your things, make sure to take a hard and long look at all of them and decide which ones you will use and need and which ones you can donate.

Grab a couple of boxes and separate the things that you do not need any more from the ones that you need to bring with you.

Another thing that you can do is to hold a garage sale before you move. These things can be a treasure for some people and if you want to dispose of the items quickly, then lower the price of each one.

When Should I Consider Moving?

If you are not in a hurry and you are flexible enough to delay your move, then go ahead and do so. Moving companies tend to increase their prices, which is during the summer.

If you can, plan your move around winter, spring, or fall. These are considered off-seasons when it comes to moving and would help you save a lot of bucks with shipping costs.

How Should I Label my Boxes?

Label your boxes by room. This will make it easier for you to unpack and you would know where to place each box once the moving company has dropped them in your new home.

You should also make a list of what items are inside each box to make sure that you would know where to place each one. Sure, this may be time-consuming and will make your packing process a little bit longer, but it will save some time during unpacking, plus, it would be a lot easier for you to unpack once you get to your new home.

Doing your research beforehand can save you lots of bucks and time. If you have no time to pack, then go ahead and enlist the help of a packing company. Most moving companies offer packing services as well, so make sure to take advantage of that.

Making Your Garage Door Safe

Residential garage doorA garage door is an essential part of any property. This door allows you to gain access to your property and still keeps you safe from the elements and intruders. According to recent statistics, however, garage doors are a primary cause of accidents in most households, especially from crashes.

One of the leading causes of accidents caused by garage doors in Port Douglas is ignoring the need for panel door repair. Experts like Infinite Garage Doors explain that prompt repair of any malfunction is an integral part of making it safe. Here are some additional features you can install to enhance safety when using the garage door.

Auto Reverse

This feature is designed to change your garage door’s moving direction should it meet any obstruction. Most panel garage door openers manufactured after 1991 have this feature. You can place a solid object like a cinder block and try closing your garage door to test your door’s auto-reverse mechanism. If it is in proper condition, it will touch the object and immediately reverse to an open position.

Manual Controls

These features prevent entrapment during power outages, storms and opener malfunctions. A manual control consists of a release handle which opens and closes the garage door when necessary. The handle is placed not more than six feet above ground to keep it within everyone’s reach.

Motion Detectors

This safety feature consists of a sensor located on your door’s track system. The sensor transmits an infrared beam when your door is closing. The door closing automatically stops and reverses should anything break the beam’s line. You can test this feature by placing any inanimate object near your garage door when closing it.

Different safety features work best for different situations. Get a garage door expert to assess your property and advise you on the best one for you. They will also handle any repairs and service works that will go a long way in enhancing safety when using the door.

Swimming Pool Leaks to Watch Out For

Residential swimming poolYour swimming pool naturally loses water because of evaporation, backwash or splash outs. You also gain water through rainfall. As a rule of thumb, if you find that you add water up to three inches every week, it is probable that water out of your pool is lost through leaks that you may want to repair.

Before going into repair solutions, a swimming pool maintenance team in Salt Lake City will first investigate to understand the leaks.

Ideally, the pool is supposed to be watertight. However, sometimes the pool cracks, sealants deteriorate, or the plumbing gets old. These three cause the most common swimming pool leaks, explained below:

1. Structural breaks

Regardless of the material that forms the pool surface, given enough time, it might crack due to heavy foot traffic. For example, vinyl decked pools can break due to exposure to sharp objects.

Structural cracks not only lose water, but they also let dirt into the pool. Note that if not fixed immediately, minor leaks grow in size.

2. Mechanical issues

Sometimes the issue with your pool has something to do with the systems around it, such as the pumping system. This can happen if, for example, the shaft seal becomes defective and so the area around the pump might always be wet, which will spoil the motor.

In such cases, the maintenance professionals may have to replace the faulty parts.

3. Plumbing

In other cases, pipes might be the culprits. PVC piping is especially a problem in extreme temperature areas and can crack in unlikely places. For example, underground pipe cracks can lose a lot of water before they are noticed.

It is essential to watch out for any irregularities around your pool. For instance, if the landscape around your pool is always wet, it might be an indication that you need to call in maintenance.

It pays to take action on seemingly subtle changes in the water levels so that they do not cost you much more than necessary in the end.