Home Renovation – When to Call the Pros

Two Options To Consider When Purchasing Window Awnings

Posted by on Nov 30th, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Two Options To Consider When Purchasing Window Awnings

Residential window awnings serve a larger purpose than just adding beauty to your home’s facade. They help lower the temperature inside your home, while also preventing sun fading to carpet and upholstery. In fact, with awnings you may not even need to wash the windows as often since they are protected from dust and moisture. When it comes to awnings you have several choices to make. The following guide can help you sort through the various options. Option #1: Material choices Modern awnings come in two main material choices – fabric or metal. The type you choose depends on several factors, primarily the preferred appearance and the amount of maintenance you are willing to provide. Fabric awnings come in nearly any color as well as in pattern options. They are typically made of a weather- and sun-resistant canvas or nylon blend. They will need periodic cleaning with a specialty awning fabric cleaner. You may also need to reapply weather and UV protection. The awnings will eventually fade and require replacement. They are also prone to wind damage, so they may not be suitable for windy locations. Metal awnings, on the other hand, are relatively low maintenance. You may want to hose them down to remove dirt every once in awhile. It may also be necessary to repaint them. You can paint the awning in an color desired. There are also decorative metals available, such as copper awnings, which can be quite striking. Option #2: Shape The shape of the awning plays a major role in the appearance of your home. Domes are a popular shape, although they are mainly only available in fabric awnings. You can use half-dome awnings to give your home the look of half-circle windows, even if you don’t have that style of window. Elongates domes work well over picture windows. Another popular shape is the traditional. These are available in both fabric and metal options. This is similar to what one sees over shopfronts and is perhaps the most readily available. You can change the look of the traditional awning by switching to a concave design, although you may want to avoid this in areas with heavy snowfall due to weight concerns. A convex awning is another option that will encourage snow to slide off, since it curves upward For more help in picking out the perfect awning, contact an awning dealer or home remodeling contractor in your...

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3 Tips For Painting Vinyl Siding

Posted by on Nov 21st, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 3 Tips For Painting Vinyl Siding

When it comes to updating the appearance of your home’s exterior, refreshing your siding can be beneficial. If you are hoping to complete your exterior remodel with minimal financial investment, then replacing your existing vinyl siding may not be an option. Adding a coat of a paint to your siding can be an affordable way to change the look of your home. Here are three tips to keep in mind as you paint your vinyl siding to ensure the finished product is functional. 1. Take energy-absorption changes into consideration. When it comes to selecting a color after you have decided to paint your vinyl siding, you need to keep the potential energy-absorption changes your selection could cause into consideration. Different colors reflect the heat from the sun at different rates. Just as a black asphalt driveway will feel warmer to the touch than your green grass when exposed to the same sunlight, a darker paint color could cause your home’s siding to absorb more heat. Select a color that is close to the color of your existing vinyl siding to reduce energy-absorption changes once painting is complete. 2. Be sure to paint the joints thoroughly. Vinyl siding has many joints where pieces of siding meet one another on your home’s exterior. While these joints can be difficult to spot when your siding remains unpainted, the addition of a new paint color could cause joints to become more visible. Vinyl siding expands and contracts when exposed to temperature changes, causing the joints to become more or less visible depending on the current temperature. If you fail to paint the joints thoroughly, contraction could expose sections of the original color of the vinyl siding. 3. Be sure to use a bonding primer. If you want to ensure that the paint you are using to update your siding adheres properly to the surface of the vinyl, you should start by applying a bonding primer. These primers are designed specifically to serve as an adhesive between vinyl siding and paint to help reduce flaking in the future. Remembering to take the time to apply a bonding primer will help you extend the life and aesthetic beauty of the paint you use to coat your existing vinyl siding. Updating the look of your home’s exterior by painting the existing vinyl siding can be an effective and affordable way to give your home more curb appeal. Contact your siding contractor for more...

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Installing A New Shower? Don’t Make These Mistakes!

Posted by on Sep 28th, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Installing A New Shower? Don’t Make These Mistakes!

Installing a new shower can give your whole bathroom new appeal. It’s lovely to step into a brand new, crystal clean shower. But if you want to make sure that shower keeps serving you well for years to come, you must avoid these common mistakes homeowners make when installing a new shower. Not angling the floor towards the drain. If you’re installing a one-piece shower insert, you can likely disregard this advice since most are already designed with this concern in mind. But if you’re installing a tile shower with a self-assembled floor, make sure the floor is banked slightly so that water runs towards the drain. Otherwise, water may pool in certain areas on the floor. This standing water can damage the tiles and grout, leading to crumbling and mold problems. Using silicone caulk to attach the floor drain. Silicone caulk may state that it’s an acceptable medium for attaching floor drains on the package. But it’s really not your best bet since within a few years, it tends to start peeling away and allowing water to seep in. If you don’t want a loose drain or mold growth under your drain, use plumber’s putty instead. It’s much more resistant to moisture and will give you a firmer hold. It’s sold in most plumbing supply stores and may come in either a big bucket or a tube. Sealing your shower head with a washer. You’ll need something to seal your washer head to the inflow pipe. Most shower heads are sold with rubber or metal washers, but these don’t seal very well. Plumbers like to use Teflon tape instead. This comes in rolls at the home improvement store. You simply cut a strip, wrap it around the threaded end on your inflow pipe, and then screw the shower head into place. You’ll have a lot fewer drips and leaks – and less resulting corrosion – to worry about. Not making sure your upscale shower head is compatible with your pipe size. If your home is more than a few years old, the pipes leading to your shower were probably chosen with a standard shower head in mind. They may be too small to allow the amount of water through that’s needed for a rain shower head or multiple shower heads. So before you spend money in a specialty shower head, have a plumber look over your pipes and ensure they’re compatible. You may want to hire a bathroom remodeling expert to ensure that your shower installation goes as smoothly as...

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3 Strategies For Restoring Mold Damaged Wood

Posted by on Aug 11th, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 3 Strategies For Restoring Mold Damaged Wood

It’s never a good thing when a home floods—especially when precious wooden objects become subject to mold infestations. Fortunately, with the right knowledge it may be possible to restore wooden furniture to its original glory. If you would like to improve your mold remediation skills, read on. This article will provide three strategies for restoring mold damaged wood.   A Quick Word About Safety Before you get your restoration started, it is important to realize that mold represents a potentially serious health risk. Thus, it is important to protect yourself by donning rubber gloves and a pair of safety goggles. To be even safer, consider investing in a respirator as well. This will protect you against inhaling mold spores that become airborne during the course of your work. Such spores can cause a wide range of health issues—everything from asthma to internal organ damage.  Vacuum Cleaner The first step in any mold remediation project should involve carefully vacuuming the object you intend to restore. This will help to protect you against the above mentioned mold spores. Before proceeding, however, it is important to verify that your vacuum is equipped with a HEPA filter. These filters are especially designed so as to trap debris with a width as little as 0.3 microns. Regular filters simply aren’t fine enough to prevent the passage of microscopic mold spores. Vinegar It is much easier to remove mold from finished, stained, or painted wood. That’s because the coatings act to prevent the mold from penetrating deeper into the wood’s pores. Cleaning can often be accomplished with an application of undiluted white vinegar. Allow the vinegar to sit in place for an hour or so, then wipe it away with a dry rag. Repeat as necessary to remove any lingering mold stains. Bleach Vinegar may work for surface mold, but it just doesn’t have the necessary oomph to treat more deeply entrenched mold—especially on wood that hasn’t been finished. Here you’ll find a bleach solution much more effective at getting the job done. Prepare a solution according to the following recipe: 1 part liquid dish soap 10 parts bleach 20 parts lukewarm tap water Carefully apply the solution using a sponge. Avoid the temptation to use a spray bottle, as the concentrated nature of the solution can cause severe irritation if it gets in your eyes. In order to kill entrenched mold, you want the bleach to saturate the wood as deeply as possible. Don’t hesitate to add more bleach as needed until all visible signs of mold have...

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Slip And Falls And Tile: How To Keep People From Falling On Your Businesses Tile Floor

Posted by on Jul 18th, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Slip And Falls And Tile: How To Keep People From Falling On Your Businesses Tile Floor

The National Safety Council states that around 25,000 people are involved in slip and fall accidents every day, costing businesses $3.5 million dollars every hour. As a business owner, you will want to do everything you can to help prevent this from occurring. Here are a few different ways you can help prevent slip and fall accidents if your business has tile flooring. Select a Tile That Isn’t Slippery One of the first ways to help prevent a slip and fall in your accident is to select tile flooring that is not slippery. For example, a ceramic tile has more friction than a marble one. When you are looking to buy tile flooring, you will want to pay close attention to the static coefficient of friction rating for the tile. The lowest rating is a 0.1 rating, which is the most slippery. The highest rating is a 1.0, which means the tile has a lot of friction and is not easy to slip over. The more friction a tile has, the less likely it will be that someone will slip on it helping to prevent slip and fall accidents in your business. Use a Floor Mat Another way to prevent a slip and fall accident in your store is to place floor mats near the doors so people can wipe their wet or muddy feet after entering your store. This can help prevent them from slipping if they step onto your tile with wet feet. However, not just any doormat will do. Some mats can bunch or wrinkle, causing them to be a tripping hazard. When placing a mat, ensure you are using a high-traction mat or one with a slip-resistant backing. This ensures you are reducing the risk of slips and falls while also not introducing a new one.   Properly Maintain Your Tile The last way you can prevent slip and fall accidents from occurring on your business tile is to properly maintain the tile. Properly cleaning the tile and using products recommended by the manufacturer is one thing to do to maintain the tile. Using the wrong products can make a tile slippery or cause the finish to wear off, which can affect the friction. Also, check your tiles for cracks or chips and have repairs made as needed. These chips and cracks can be tripping hazards. Every business should take preventative measures to prevent slip and fall accidents from occurring in their business. This is because personal injury lawsuits can occur if you don’t take any action and a customer or employee slips and is injured. Select a tile with a high static coefficient of friction rating, using the right floor mat and properly maintaining your tile are a few of the things you can do to prevent these accident from occurring. If you are in the market for a new tile for your business, a remodeling contractor can work with you to install a tile that has friction or can have friction or tread added to it, to help decrease the likelihood of someone slipping and falling in your business. To learn more about tile, contact a company likeBig John’s...

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How To Faux Wood Grain Paint Walls

Posted by on May 24th, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on How To Faux Wood Grain Paint Walls

If you want a different look for your walls, consider faux wood grain painting. Faux wood grain painting gives the look of real wood without the expense. Faux wood grain painting sounds intimidating, but it is an easy remodeling project for a beginning DIY enthusiast to do. Here are some tips to faux wood grain paint walls. Prepare to Work For this project, you need : work gloves face mask screwdriver plastic sheeting painters tape drop cloths box fan clear acrylic glaze rags 6-inch and 12-inch paint tray 6-inch and 12-inch paint roller 5-inch wood grain rocker ( tool with a curved textured pad) two shades of brown latex paint extension pole angled paint brush Cover doors with plastic sheeting to keep paint fumes from spreading, and lay drop cloths on floors and furniture. Apply painter’s tape to window casings and molding. Use the screwdriver to remove outlets, then cover the opening with painter’s tape. Open a window to ventilate, or set a box fan to blow outside. Apply the Base Coat The base coat is commonly two or three shades lighter than the wood color. Some colors you can use for a base coat include eggshell or beige. Pour the base coat into the 12 inch tray, then apply it with the 12-inch paint roller. Let it dry according to manufacturer’s instructions. Paint the trim and molding with the angled paint brush. Add the Glaze The top coat of brown paint should be two or three shades darker than the base coat. Combine equal parts of clear glaze to the second brown paint color in the 6-inch tray, then join the paint roller to an extension pole. You may prefer to practice the technique with the wood grain rocker on a scrap piece of wood or cardboard. Starting on the left edge of the wall, make a six-inch stripe running from the top to the bottom. Set the wood grain rocker on the middle of the stripe; ensuring the handle points to you. Create a flame pattern with the wood grain rocker by turning the handle as you move the rocker down the wall. The wood grain rocker removes everything but the glaze. Repeat the technique making 6-inch stripes until the wall is covered, then allow the glaze to dry. Alternate patterns on each stripe by using the notched edge of the rocker. If you make a mistake, apply a fresh coat of glaze. When the glaze dries, apply a coat of polyurethane sealer. Faux wood grain will give your room a new look. If you don’t trust your skill, hire a remodeling...

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Four Items To Always Have In Your Sunroom

Posted by on Apr 18th, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Four Items To Always Have In Your Sunroom

If you’re a homeowner who is adding a sunroom onto the side of the house, no doubt you’re having a great time considering layouts, furnishings, and other decorations for the room. Sunrooms can be relaxing spaces that let you look out on your garden without the dust-, dirt-, and leaf-based distractions that porches can bring. Sunrooms are also often easier to clean and easier to control climate-wise. However, when you plan the sunroom, be sure you add these four items. Ceiling Fan Regardless of what type of climate control you put in the sunroom, be it central air conditioning, a wood stove, or a portable heater or cooler, add a ceiling fan. Even in sunrooms with glass-panel ceilings, you can find spaces through which to run wiring and to hang a small fan. Sometimes the issue with the environment inside the sunroom is not that it’s too hot or cold but that it’s too stuffy. If the weather that day is humid, rainy, or another type that makes you not want to open your windows, a ceiling fan will provide a breeze that can break up the stuffiness. Curtains While the point of a sunroom is to have a sunny place to sit that’s still indoors, sometimes direct sunlight can be too much. Curtains will help you block that out. Curtains can also make the sunroom feel a little more secure if you decide you want to sit there at night, when you can’t see out but others can see in. Sheer curtains that let in light but block the view are good for days that aren’t too hot, but heavier curtains may be better for days when direct sunlight is just too hot. Plants If you use the sunroom a lot, you should have some plants in there. Plants in general look nice, but if you use the room as an office, study, or another place to concentrate or unwind, plants can have a beneficial effect. Texas A&M University notes that plants can increase concentration and information retention, and they can be calming as well. Security If the sunroom will have windows that open or doors leading to the yard, be sure you add proper security. In addition to the regular latches that come with the windows, add pin or thumb locks to the tracks. Doors should have deadbolts. If you have anything in the sunroom, it could become a target for theft, so add proper security to reduce the chances of someone getting inside when they’re not supposed to. If you want more ideas for your sunroom, contact sunroom designers and window specialists, such as those at Another Estimate LLC. The latter, especially, can help you with window security issues and...

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Three Things To Get Rid Of During Your Next Kitchen Remodel

Posted by on Apr 4th, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Three Things To Get Rid Of During Your Next Kitchen Remodel

Are you starting to plan a remodeling project for your home’s kitchen? If so, you’re likely looking at things you want to add and where you want to put them. However, you should also take care to remove items or situations that don’t work well for you. That sounds obvious, but sometimes people put up with more than they have to because they think changing the situation will be too hard or too expensive. A kitchen remodel is the perfect time to tackle these issues, including these three things that really shouldn’t make it into your new kitchen design. Vents Above the Stove This has become rather common in newer apartments and homes with central air and heating; a vent is placed in the ceiling right above the stove. On one hand, you’d think that this would help keep you cool when you have to cook in hot weather. But what that cool air blasting down onto the stove can really do is cool down the food you’re trying to heat up. While you could eventually get the food to the right temperature, it would likely take longer, thus using more energy from the stove. You could always turn off the air conditioner before cooking, but that’s an extra step you shouldn’t have to take. Another issue is that, if your home’s ducts are rather dusty, that dust is going to get blown out onto the stove and possibly into the food. That’s a side effect you really don’t want. When you design your new kitchen, try to move the stove away from the vent, or have the vents moved themselves. Spaces Above Cabinet Tops Upper cabinets generally have two styles: Those with open spaces up top and those that seem to be set into the wall with part of the wall right above them (so you have the ceiling, then a beam that looks like the top of the wall, and then the top of the cabinets). Try to install new cabinets that don’t have that open space. While that space can occasionally be a handy storage area, it can also be a handy path for mice and other winter pests trying to make a home in your warm kitchen. Unless you definitely have a reason for wanting an open storage space that’s near the ceiling, close off that space by installing either larger cabinets that reach up to the ceiling, or an extension of the wall that meets the tops of the cabinets. Dead Cabinet Spaces Inside the cabinets often isn’t much better because of dead spaces like the backs of lower corner cabinets. These turn into relatively scary spots that gather dust if you don’t use them. Instead, either design your new kitchen so that you don’t have these remote back corners, or design the cabinets so that they have pull-out racks that let you easily access the back spaces. If you want more suggestions for how to remedy these three issues, or if you want to get more suggestions for other remodeling changes, contact a kitchen remodeling company. The designers there will help you plan out a fully functional...

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A Grand Galley — How To Maximize A Long, Narrow Kitchen

Posted by on Mar 24th, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on A Grand Galley — How To Maximize A Long, Narrow Kitchen

Remodeling a narrow kitchen can be a design challenge. The long, skinny space — often called a galley kitchen — is not conductive to many of the standard kitchen layouts and designs. But you can have a successful remodel by following a few design tips perfect for narrow kitchens. Don’t Waste Counter Space Counter space is precious in a small, narrow kitchen, so don’t waste it on small appliances, dish storage or extra knick-knacks. Use built-in cabinets with standard or flip-up doors for storing things like the coffee maker, microwave and food processors. Rather than placing spices on the counter, use a wall-mounted or magnetic hanging spice rack system. You can even get a wall-mounted faucet system so you can opt for a larger sink.  Use All the Nooks and Crannies It’s even more important to try to avoid wasting any space in a galley kitchen. Built-in banquette furniture can be used to add a small eating space with storage underneath. Add more storage by mounting cabinets end-to-end underneath the countertops. Use pull-out racks and drawers to make use of small spaces like beside the range. And don’t forget the space above cabinets — try adding a long, open shelf above eye level on which you can store little-used items.  Clean Lines and Light Make the kitchen look neater, larger and more inviting by creating a clean overall look with a limited color palette. Neutrals, whites and pastels make a good base color for walls, countertops and cabinetry. You can accent this single-color system by using a complementary accent color for trim, a backsplash or light fixtures. Be sure to include as much natural lighting as possible to help make the space look larger. If you can’t add windows (or don’t want to lose the cabinet space), try a skylight or skylight tube.  Create a Single Focal Point While keeping your galley kitchen simple and uncluttered is a good way to open it up, you still want to make something fun and interesting about it. You can add a focal point for guests and family by installing a bold or patterned backsplash, hanging a charming and unique pendant lamp or painting one end wall with a personalized design.  Create Zones Reduce traffic in your limited space and increase efficiency by creating work zones within the kitchen. A zone can be a certain triangle on both sides of the galley (for example, containing the stove, sink and refrigerator) or it can encompass only one side of the kitchen (reducing cross traffic). Separating the kitchen tasks (cooking, snacking or cleaning up) will help you do more with less room.  By making the best use of space, adding a lot of storage and keeping your kitchen uncluttered visually, you can create the kitchen of your dreams no matter what its shape or size. Contact a kitchen remodeling service for more...

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4 Ideas To Improve Your Builder’s Grade Home

Posted by on Feb 26th, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 4 Ideas To Improve Your Builder’s Grade Home

Unique features are what can make a house a home, but many homes come with the standard builder’s grade components. This means boring but functional doors, cabinets and trim, along with other key features. The following are a few home improvement ideas to make your home go from boring to amazing. Idea #1: Update the Doors Plain hollow core doors, usually in a color that matches the rest of the wood trim in the house, are the standard fare in many homes. You have two options for updating these – replacement or a facelift. Replacement is the simplest choice and can be completed in an afternoon once you have your doors picked out. For a facelift, purchase narrow wood and cut it to make square or rectangular frames. Next, attach these to the doors with wood glue, creating a faux panel inset. Finally, sand the entire door and then paint it the color of choice. It’s easier to take the door down for this entire process, and then rehang it when you are done. Idea #2: Improve Your Cabinetry This is a good idea for both bathroom vanities or kitchen cabinets. The simplest DIY option is to sand and repaint the cabinets. You can also simply have the old cabinets ripped out and you can replace them with new. For an in-between option, consider refacing the cabinets with new doors. You can keep everything else the same or repaint it. Then, simply pick out doors or have some custom made to fit your cabinet, in the design you like. If you opt to repaint your existing doors instead, you can use trim to create faux paneling, cover them in decorative beadboard, or replace the knobs and hardware for further improvements. Idea #3: Upgrade Your Baseboards Trim, and sometimes the lack there of, can be one of the most obvious builder grade choices in a home. Sanding and repainting the trim can provide an instant improvement over the plain wood options in many homes. You can also add a decorative topper strip to your current baseboards to make them more attractive, or simply replace the baseboard and door trim with something you like better. Idea #4: Add Some Trim Don’t overlook your windows. Many windows have narrow trim. Adding some decorative molding to the top of the window or just beneath the sill can add more wow and make a window look larger. Crown molding on the ceiling is another way to take your home from builder’s grade to amazing. If you need help with any of these improvements, contact a contractor in your area, such as Latocha Builders & Renovations Inc. ...

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