8 Tips for Saving Energy this Winter

For many, it’s our favorite time of year: the fall. For others, it’s the time of year where you plan for your energy bill to go through the roof. No matter what you do, it seems like you can’t control your bills quite as much as you did in the summer. Here are some energy saving tips that can help make those cold winter months a bit more bearable.

    1. Open your curtains during the day.

The windows that allow the most sunshine into your home should be left open during daytime. Leaving these windows open for just a few hours every day can help reduce how much you need to heat your home in the winter.

    2. Lower the thermostat inside your home.

By layering up, your home can stand to have the temperature 5 degrees lower. A small decrease in your home’s overall temperature can mean big savings on your next bill. You can try this during the day when everyone is gone and see if your family can stand the difference at night while everyone is sleeping.

    3. Avoid blocking heat vents.

Furniture has a tendency to get moved around during the year without us even realizing that it could be blocking a vent. Do a quick sweep of your home and make sure no vents are being blocked by large pieces of furniture.

    4. Get an energy audit for your home.

This is the easiest way to find ways to save money around your home. A home professional can come to your home and examine how efficient your home is. They can then provide you with a list of ways to become more efficient (even better than this list).

    5. Maintain your HVAC system.

Like your car, your HVAC system needs yearly maintenance. We recommend getting your system professionally looked at every fall before the cold winter temperatures set in. A dirty system can cost you a breakdown or a total system failure if not diagnosed and treated properly.

    6. Examine your fireplace closely.

Like your HVAC system, your fireplace needs maintenance as well. Make sure it’s properly fitted with additions to ensure efficiency. If you are looking for the fireplace to warm your entire home, speak to a contractor about an exchange system installation.

    7. Switch to LED lights for an efficiency win.

Your old holiday lights take up so much energy they can do some real damage your bill. Replacing them with LEDs, which take up much less energy and are ultimately more energy efficient. Keeping your lights on a timer will also help keep your costs under control.

    8. Install a programmable thermostat for ultimate efficiency.

If you are stuck manually adjusting your thermostat, there is a good chance you are losing more money than you even realize. A programmable thermostat remedies that problem by letting you set the temperature in your home at all hours of the day. The initial investment is small and can save you hundreds of dollars a year.

6 Tips to Prevent Mold Growth

Mold spores are a regular part of indoor air and live on walls furniture and clothes in the humid climate of Palm Coast, Florida. Usually mold comes from outside sources, although regular household cleaning will keep levels low. regular heavy duty cleaning of shows and baths where spores accumulate is essential for a healthy home.

If your Florida home has a significant level of mold growth, however, that’s cause for concern. Spores can flourish wherever there is a leak, flood or high levels of humidity. This growth usually leads to high levels of airborne mold, which in turn triggers additional growth as spores travel to other areas inside your Florida home that also have high moisture levels.

An extensive mold infestation damages your Florida home’s interior and its furnishings. including carpets and cabinets. Over time, uncontrolled mold growth can even invade structural elements. Even though there is no practical way to eliminate all mold, keeping your home as clean and dry as possible can prevent extensive damage.

Damage to your Palm Coast, Florida, home and possessions is only one reason to keep it clean. Mold also presents potential health risks to individuals with allergies or respiratory problems.

Adverse effects of molds include allergic reactions, infections, irritations and in some cases can even be toxic. Symptoms of adverse mold reactions include wheezing, shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, nasal congestion, sneezing, eye and throat irritations, fatigue and headaches.

To avoid such problems, here are some tips to help keep your Palm Coast, Florida, home from becoming a mold breeding ground.

1. Vent bathrooms, dryers and other moisture producers to the outside
2. Ensure that all air conditioning vents have unrestricted air flow
3. Use dehumidifiers for basements and crawlspaces
4. When cooking, use the kitchen exhaust fan
5. Install sufficient installation on piping, air ducts and basement walls to retard the formation of condensation
6. Use moisture sensor alarms in areas where water back-ups and overflows frequently occur to avoid leaks and similar problems.

By following these simple rules in your Palm Coast, Florida, home you’ll have a healthier residence and avoid the need for extensive mold remediation.

The Essentials for Great Outdoor Living

You may think that outdoor living design specialists are the only ones who know the best strategies to create beautiful, functional outdoor spaces, but it’s time you knew the secrets! From the simple touch of stylish patio furniture to the trendy outdoor kitchen and outdoor bar, there is something you can do on any budget to make your backyard perfect for outdoor living!

A Perfect Outdoor Living Space

You can create a beautiful outdoor living space without spending too much money. The key is to use some creativity and repurpose things you already own.

Define your space.
Create and define your outdoor living space by arranging potted plants of different heights to create a “green wall” for an intimate sitting area.

Get creative with patio furniture ideas.
Think creatively when it comes to patio furniture and seating. A piece of lumber can convert into a bench, tree stumps can be topped with weather-resistant cushions to become stools, and unused pavers can be topped on to planting pots to become end tables. Anything’s possible!

Get more intimate.
A lovely sitting area or outdoor dining area isn’t very relaxing if your neighbor can see your every move. Consider creating bright, budget-friendly privacy screens by stringing bright outdoor rugs between patio posts, which then become a source kinetic art as the breeze blows.

Heat it up.
When you want intimacy, nothing beats a roaring fire. Buy a fire pit or build a modular outdoor fireplace to serve as the centerpiece of your outdoor living room.

Get Cooking
Extending your home into the outdoors by prepping, cooking and eating amid the calm of nature without the worry of leaving the sliding glass door open. An outdoor kitchen is the ultimate for entertaining with everything in reach—from refrigerators and sinks to storage and even kegerators! But keep in mind that the style of your outdoor kitchen should be influenced by the architecture of your home and your personal style.

Drink Up Outside
Speaking of kegerators, it’s time to consider a full-on outdoor bar. Location is important when planning an outdoor bar. It should be conveniently located adjacent to an outdoor dining area or where people like to gather near your patio furniture. You have to decide if you want a wet bar or dry bar. A wet bar is great but you’ll need access to water and electricity. A dry bar requires storage space for coolers to keep drinks chilled. And again, the décor of your outdoor bar should be designed around the rest of the outdoor living space.

Get it Done Right
It takes an expert’s skill and experience to turn your basic backyard into an outdoor living oasis. Make the most of your space with precise planning, an artistic vision and the expertise of a professional design team. A professional designer with a keen eye for style and detail can expertly plan your patio furniture, outdoor kitchen, outdoor bar and more offering advice on appliances that will last. And most of all, you’ll need a professional will know how to give your home the most dazzling entertaining space on the block!

Options For The Interior Lighting Of Your Home That Work Best

Interior lighting is one aspect of a room that must be considered if you want everything to look its best. The right kind of lighting can showcase features such as an elegant rug, high quality furniture or artwork on the walls. The lighting should not be too harsh, or dim. You need to set it at the right intensity. The following are just some of the interior lighting options worth considering if you’re looking for a way to enhance the appearance of your house.

When choosing the type of lighting for your home, it’s important to stick with a consistent style.

The same lamps or lighting fixtures that will look great in one home will seem inappropriate in another. If you have a modern looking lamp right next to a Victorian-style piece of furniture, this will clash in a heartbeat. When shopping for something on a website, or in the department store, the type of lighting that you use in a different in both locations. Consider in your mind the way it should look to you. Try to make your Interior lighting complement your home, not conflict with it in any way.

The dining room is one spot where lighting is important. Many meals take place in this area, as well as family gatherings and parties. You want this room to be bright and cheerful, but at the same time you don’t want to feel like you’re under a spotlight. It is a good idea to have a dimmer with your overhead light. The main room in the house where you want to control the lighting is probably the room where you have social gatherings. The dining room can be lit up effectively with both attractive lamps and wall sconces. Whatever effect to want, you can experiment until you get it.

The lighting you choose for a bedroom should not be the same as for a living room or dining room. It should be soft light, creating a cozy environment. If there’s an overhead light, it’s best to have it on a dimmer so the room won’t be any brighter than necessary.

A reading lamp on the table next to the bed is also a good idea. A bulb that is too bright, especially in this lamp, should be avoided. You don’t want the room to get brighter. You just want enough light to read with. Your bed should not have lights directly pointed at it. It can cause strange and unwanted appearance. You need to be a restful relaxed mood, which is what bedroom lighting should achieve.

In conclusion, the overall appearance of your home will be greatly impacted when having interior lighting options. Choose one room at a time. No need to rush! You want to have the right kind of lighting in each part of your house as each room is different. We’ve provided some viable lighting solutions you may want to try. You can achieve any look that you want, for any room in your house. There are so many possibilities. Good luck!

Essential Objectives of Dining Tables

Most homes with families would have a proper dining table to facilitate the serving of meals where family members can enjoy each other’s company and enhance the bonding. Dining tables offer a plethora of benefits with the right type and design.

Uses

A dining table is not just to have a meal at in any premise. Dining tables are prevalent in the home where families can come together to enjoy a hearty meal with one another while establishing a stronger relationship with one another.

The meal allows members of the family around the table to relax while opening up to one another. The day’s events are shared and emotions can be expressed to help each member gain a better understanding of the other. A deeper bond is secured to bind the family ties.

A dining table is an excellent source of creating and establishing friendships. Strangers and acquaintances warm up to a shared meal around the table and quickly become best friends for life. The cozy dining table draws all around it to enjoy some light hearted moments that can be lifetime memories.

Sleek and classy dining tables found in fine dining restaurants and hotels create a sophisticated atmosphere that can transform one into a diva or king for the night. Exquisite dining tables can change the mood of the diners as much as the furnishings and fittings in the premise so that the diners would enjoy a pleasant if not satisfying meal with special company.

Ranges

There is a wide range of fine dining tables in the market to fit any environment. Homeowners are spoiled for choice with the myriad of modern, chic or traditional dining table designs that come in different sizes and shapes to fit their dining space. These dining tables can come as individual pieces or in a set with an appropriate number of chairs for a perfect display and utility.

Dining tables come in a wide range of pricing to fit the budget of all consumers; hence, everyone is able to afford a full dining set easily as the market offers a plethora of choices on dining tables with or without chairs. Such flexibility allows consumers to create their own choice of dining sets to fit their home environment.

 

Shopping for home furnishings and furniture for your home

Tips using modern furniture hardware

10 Things that You Need to Consider When Buying Gardens Sheds.

It is natural to get anxious when you start noticing your things such as lawn equipment and holiday decorations piled up in the house or your garage because you lack enough room for storage. The best solution is to purchase a garden shed, but remember there are various things you need to consider before carrying out any purchase. They include the following.

1. The volume of the shed.
It might be ideal to get the largest garden shed available because you can never run out of things to store. However, your backyard’s size and the amount you are willing to part with are the true determinants of the size of the garden shed you can obtain.

2. Garden shed designs.
Whichever material kit you purchase, you will have to select from a variety of designs. Having your taste in mind and the design of your building will help in the choice you make.

3. The placement.
The best spot is the one closest to your house especially if you want to use it as your workshop. Other factors that come to play include the sun’s position and a dry, free drainage area with easy door entry. You can place the shed under a tree or next to a taller building, away from direct sunlight and remember to leave room for the easy opening and shutting of the shed’s door.

4. Building codes.
Typically, garden sheds do not require building permits if the floor area is below 10 meters square and not exceeding the shed’s height boundary. If you happen to exceed these limitations, you will be required to register for a building permit.

5. Understructure and flooring.
After identifying the placement location for your garden shed, the next thing is to contemplate where it’s going to be set. There are various selections of the base such as concrete slab, pavers placed on top of a leveled sand bed or concrete blocks and wooden struts placed on top of flattened gravel or steel foundation. It is important that your garden shed is fastened to a firm, even foundation to avert the frame from bending and warping. Also, the higher it is from the ground, the more secure it is from rain water.

6. Preservation.
Ensure the shed you purchase is long lasting. You can impede soil dampness from rising into the shed via the floor by fixing vapor barriers beneath your foundation and polythene sheeting is the perfect material for this.

7. Materials.
It all comes down to your personal preferences and what you intend to use the garden shed for. There’s a variety of garden sheds made from different materials such as timber, metal and plastic. You just have to select the one that best suits your requirements.

8. Price and quality.
The best quality sheds are often costly therefore if you are ready to part with whatever amount of cash in order to acquire the best quality shed then go for it.

9. Landscape.
Your surrounding is important when selecting your ideal garden shed. Garden sheds are not simply functional items. Aside from their utility, the outdoor appearance of garden sheds influences the general appearance of your home. Therefore, the design of the shed should complement your home.

10. The garden shed use.
What you plan to use the garden shed for is also important to selecting your preferred garden shed. Some sheds have dual doors ideal for storing bulky items such as lawn mowers. Also consider the height if you are planning to incorporate shelves on the interior.

Garden sheds are great for creating extra space to store all your equipment and facilities. But before you purchase one think of all the above factors so that you select a garden shed that meets your entire requirements.

The Top 5 Must Do Things When Planning Bathroom Remodel Detailed in New Bathroom Guide

As bathrooms continue to be a top frequently remodeled spot in homes for sale, homeowners are often faced with the seemingly big challenge of finding cost effective yet highly efficient renovation practices. Renovating costs reach an average of anywhere from $15,782 to as much as $50,000 with an expected ROI of $65,000 and $58,000 respectively, compelling sellers to take the least expensive renovation route and make the most out of it.

American Standard recently released a free “The How to Buy Guide for the Bathroom” e-book. Highlighting the ins and outs bathroom renovation project which works without breaking the bank, the free guide shares five important points.

1. Decide on the Primary Use of the Space

Determining who uses the bathroom and what purpose it should serve is a must. The number of people in the household using the space should also be considered. Depending on how extensive the project is, an otherwise common and few-square-feet baths can possibly transform into a spacious area for a relaxing, semi-retreat experience.

2. DIY versus Hiring a Contractor

It is important for a homeowner to consider the type of work that will be done. There are costs involved in hiring contractors, which may be considerably saved through DIY approach. On the flip side, a DIY project may be cheaper but does not guarantee professional design and space maximization.

3. Numbers Count

Accurate measurements matter. Common sense dictates that the perfect tub ceases to be a great buy if it doesn’t fit in the space. Similarly, a bathroom glass door may seem like a great option, but very limited space and mismatching colors can render it useless. Opting for a shower curtain accessorized with shower curtain rings is practical, as it comes in a variety of designs to achieve the desired look for the bathroom.

4. Compare Prices on Everything

Wise buying entails a thorough product checking and comparison in terms of quality and price. Most homeowners can jump into the crucial step of finding the right materials for the bathroom project, but not without checking and counterchecking all choices. By being informed, homeowners are able to get the best deals and stick with the plan.

5. Stick to Your Budget

Budget setting can make or break a bathroom makeover. Having a budget and working within its framework can safely keep a bathroom renovation project realistic and attainable. A budget cushion is also necessary to cover expenses that may suddenly crop up.

How to Prevent Basement Flooding

Basements are one of the most vulnerable areas in the home to flooding due to their location below ground. Water from rain or coastal flooding can easily drop from level ground into a basement and wreak havoc on your carpets, furniture, and structural integrity.

How can you protect your basement from flooding? The following tips provide guidance if you want to keep your basement flood free:

1. Divert the water: Long before flood strikes, look for ways to divert the flow of water so that it never makes it into your basement. Play with gravity by adding soil to your yard to create a slope away from, as opposed to leading to, your home. Discuss plans with a landscape or excavation contractor for ideas on how to redirect flood water. You can also adjust rain gutter spouts away from your structure to discourage rain from leaking down and into your basement.

2. Clean top to bottom: Fall brings hundreds of leaves to the ground and into your gutters. Blocks in your gutters will cause roof water to dump onto your foundation, which can then leak into your basement, so keep those gutters clean.

3. Generate your own solutions: Automatic power generators provide electric power to keep your essential circuits, such as your furnace or electric heat, well pump, septic tank pump, and sump pump operational in the event that you lose power. In these situations, losing power without a backup can leave you with basement flooding from frozen water pipes or a septic tank that flooded while you were not at home.

4. Sump pump it out: All basement owners should have an automatic sump pump at their disposal. This equipment helps to prevent water leaking from rainfall down the side of your home from building up in your basement. The tank must have an opening in the lid in order to operate as a drain and prevent water from accumulating.

5. And then install one more . . . : Because sump pumps are mechanical, they can fail, regardless of the model. By using a backup sump pump system, which may include a battery-operated pump, you ensure that if the primary sump pump stops working, the configured switch device will kick the backup into high gear. You can even find systems that include an alarm that goes off when the battery-operated sump pump has begun to work, for up-to-the-minute security.

6. Create an emergency plan: Have a plan in place so that the moment something goes wrong, you will be ready. Make sure that every member of your household has exchanged cell phone numbers. If your location is prone to flooding, be sure to establish places ahead of time where you and your family can stay until the waters subside. These locations may include the homes of friends or family on higher ground that have proven safe in other flooding situations.

Also, consider what emergency services you may need should a flood do damage to your home. An emergency response team can help to transform your experience from stressful to stable, so do yourself and your family a favor and keep the right phone numbers handy.

Basement flooding strikes your home at its very root. Protect your structure from permanent damage by guarding against basement flooding before it happens and taking steps to manage the effects if it does occur.

Repair Broken Windows By Using These Pointers

Cracked windows? No need to be concerned, you can contact the pros or try and mend it by yourself.

1. Always wear protective gloves and eye protection to guarantee your safety. Glass is dangerous.

2. If the window is just cracked then use masking tape and crisscross the window nicely, being watchful. With the rear end of a hammer gently break the glass and remove it from the frame it is in to mend broken window.

3. By using a chisel, neatly remove the putty. If the putty is there a while it might now be quite difficult but don’t worry, you can soften it up using linseed oil.

4. When the putty you must now clean up frame using your chisel and then with some sand paper. You are now prepared to add the new pane of glass.

5. Determine the opening and get a piece of glass for any reputable glass maker (Leaving behind a gap of about 2 to 3mm). Be sure you use your gloves and eye wear right here!!

6. With a couple more linseed oil apply nicely around the frame. This usually prevents your putty from becoming dry too rapidly.

7. Roll out your putty (Approximately the same thickness like a pen). with ample to coat the framework, it is time to put in the glass to the frame. At this point lightly, yet securely press up against the putty. Just about any excess putty, take off using a putty knife. Secure the brand new glass into position with pins.

8. Bring your putty and roll this away so that it fits round the windows. Neatly clean the putty with a putty knife. Now get rid of any extra putty. Leave your window for at least 2 days to let the putty settle completely. Now thoroughly clean your glass!

Keep in mind use caution! Remember at all times you need to put on safety gloves and safety eye wear. This is very important and both these items are available out of your local shop.

Glass not only cuts but when repairing damaged frames, tiny bits of glass could fly up and cause severe and permanent harm. When fixing glass, be sure you sweep up meticulously after you have finished as children might be playing close by and your may have pets wandering around, both which are vulnerable to small pieces of glass.

If needs be, talk to a professional glazing company by visiting and don’t forget always to request their qualifications just before authorizing them to work with your broken windows etc.

Architectural Metal Work: The Process Behind the Building

It’s becoming harder and harder these days to find a landscape that isn’t framed by buildings, skyscrapers, and structures of all kinds. But when it comes to making the buildings add something more to the skyline — architectural metal work has worked wonders to transform steel and more into the strong, massive, and even beautiful structures you see every day. After all, if you have to see buildings they might as well be pleasing to the eye, right?

Every year, metal fabrication is used to provide architectural fabrications of every size. From steel bollards to grand arches and intricate staircases — architectural metalwork has become a massive industry that has continually combined state of the art equipment and engineering expertise to shape skylines around the world. But what does it typically entail?

Architectural fabrication can be found in residential, commercial, and industrial buildings and include processes ranging from welding to high precision laser cutting. Lately, with commercial construction experiencing a welcome upturn after a crippling economy, new trends are beginning to emerge in non-residential architectural fabrication. To a large degree, design tended to focus on work with I beams, H beams, and C channels. However, the use of tubular components and hollow structural sections (otherwise known as HSS) have becoming more and more popular over the years.

Over the last several years, hollow structure sections have been making serious headway for non-residential construction projects. This has largely been due to the weight to strength ratios of hollow structure sections, which are about 20% stronger and typically weight about half as much as a wide-flange section, making it incredibly economical for today’s builders. On top of this, HSS construction sections are also much easier to finish and more aesthetically pleasing. One of the reasons architectural fabrication has contributed to so much growth and so many breathtaking projects is because of the technology used to accomplish it.

One significant reason for the rise of recent trends in architectural fabrication is the growing use of laser welding and cutting tools — which make the processing of these parts very efficient, especially for tubular construction sections.

Many of the tools used for architectural fabrications are even capable of using multiple programmed tools at once to allow for extremely complex workpieces. Additionally, when it comes to many large scale architectural fabrication products, lasers also allow fabricators to eliminate the need for extensive milling by simply using high powered lasers to make incredibly accurate, fast, and efficient cuts, holes, bevels and more. While it’s hardly all about lasers, they stand as a perfect example to illustrate the way growing technology is actively helping industry change our world and the way it looks.

So next time you’re admiring a sunset over the city skyline or marveling at the intricacies of a museum or public building — take a moment to consider the years of innovation and experience that made it all possible.