About Me

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 NJ contractor since 1994, and a father, and husband. Contact me for all your construction questions.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Your bathroom in bamboo

Bamboo has become very popular in flooring. But there are other area's in the home for its use. This includes cabinets and shelving.

Bamboo is not only a renewable resource, but it is one of the most durable hardwoods and the most water resistant.

Most of the time your bathroom vanity is made of medium density fiberboard, and this is the cheap way to go. Now you can use solid bamboo. Not only will your vanity be durable it will be a start in going green.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Winter bulbs

Dozen of spring flower bulbs can be coaxed to bloom in the winter. Some take some effort but it can be done. Thats because not all spring bulbs need a cold period. Your amaryllis and freesia are great bulbs to coax early. 

Monday, December 26, 2011

Metal Roofs



Why do some choose metal roofs? Well, it may be due to the fact that metal roofs offer, more resistance. They are great against moisture damage and damage from the sun. They also last much longer than other roofing materials. If you go with a standing seam roof, the raised edge will help to direct water off your roof, which prevents water from staying there causing any damage.
 

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Cozy Reading

If you or some one in your family is a avid reader, you know how important it is to have a cozy reading area. This is a place in your home where you can be alone and enjoy your books. It's a area that is decorated for your reading space. There's nothing like curling up to a good read. And having your own reading area makes it even better. It only takes a few cozy elements to make your space your own by adding some warmth and comfort.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Pen Stains

At some time or other we have all had a ink stain on our clothes. If this happens to you treat the item with rubbing alcohol. Just put the item on top of a white towel and work from the outside in. Bot the stain with alcohol, and watch the ink go to the under side.

 

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

DIY

If you are a DIY do person, you know you are saving tons of money. And you are also putting a personal touch on your project. Here are just some idea's for the DIY person.

How about making your own headboard. Maybe for your bedroom, or your child's, this is a great weekend project.

Even painting a room is a great DIY project, getting it done by a professional can be not only timely but pricey.

How about refinishing some old table tops and re surfacing them. It's a in the garage project, but if you pick up some old tables some place you can make them to fit your style decor.

Putting some molding or chair railing up in a room not only adds style, but can save your walls from getting hit by chairs. Its easy and can add so much depth to your room.

If you like painting, how about doing some faux on a wall in your home. You can give the room your own personal touch.

For the real thrifty and crafty person, you can even make some new lambs to go in any of your rooms.

What ever DIY project you are doing, it will be with your own style and touch.

Monday, December 19, 2011

New Tool Alert for Construction

A new tool is coming, called the Stinger CN 100, it is a new cap nail tool. It is from National Nail Corporation. The tool will secure underlayments and roofing felt. Its light and compact. It drives five caps per second, which is ten times faster than hand driving.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

El submarino

On a cold night, my family loves it when I make hot chocolate. And the best one is my El Submarino. The recipe comes from Argentina, and it is easy to make and really good. It is a cup of hot milk, with a piece of chocolate that comes on the side. You put the chocolate into the hot milk and as you stir it, you get a rich hot cup of hot chocolate. The best part is the chocolate that waits for you on the bottom of your cup.
 

Friday, December 16, 2011

Hot water Boiler

It Winter, and many have their heat on. But if you live in a apartment, your getting heat from a boiler. And it must be ready. The boiler is what gives you heat that comes into your apartment from the baseboard, or radiator.

The boiler is different that your home furnace. It provides radiant heat. Their systems are also more complex than our home furnace's.

They can have issues like noisy pipes, inconsistent heat, and also leaks.

One thing for sure, only a professional can work on these.
 

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Green at the Laundromat

You don't have to only be green at home, you can be green even at your local laundromat as well. And while doing so you can also save your self a little money.

First tip is, instead of using several washers and dryers, try to fill one up as much as you can. Instead of throwing a few pieces into several washers and dryers, this save water, but saves you money.

Using cold water, helps your clothes from fading, but also is green in a water it leaves little carbon in the air.

On the market today is green laundry soap, this is a big help in going green.

Two products in every home white vinegar and baking soda. These two ingredients are the earths most friendly laundry products. The vinegar helps reduce odor and softens your clothes and therefor no fabric softener is needed. Also baking soda helps with odors and helps boosts the performance of your detergent as well as your bleach.

When getting ready to dry your cloths try and grab one that is already warm. The left over heat will dry your clothes faster, which will save you money.

Keeping a clean lint trap will also help to save energy, this is not only good at home but for the laundromat to.

Of course on a sunny day, hanging your clothes out, not only makes them smell fresh, but saves money and energy. You can also get indoor clothes lines as well.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Stucco and what it is

I have been asked exactly what is stucco? Well it is a mortar mix that you use for siding. Mixed with sand and lime with some water and a few other ingredients, mostly cement.

Stucco has become popular lately, it give a nice architectural look to your home. Back in the day, many Italians used this for their homes in Europe. Stucco can also me molded into shapes that are used on the home as well.

Its a nice addition to your home, but must be done by a professional, this is not for the DIY person.

 

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Green Seed

Items around the home can be used for starting your seeds. Items like plastic cups from smoothies, or just plain plastic cups work great. Plastic cups with lids are even better. You can keep the lids on until you see your seedlings, then just pop off the lid and leave it off.


Using the plastic in this way is great, theres no waste left behind after drinking from the plastic cut.

What I do first, is get some stones or pebbles and place them in the bottom of my cup, before adding my soil. This is a great way to start your fruit seeds as well as your veggie seeds.


  

Monday, December 12, 2011

The Wonder Product

Do you know the one thing we all have in our home that is called a wonder product? Well its also known as vinegar. There are so many things you can do with it besides using it in cooking.

Vinegar originally came from wine that had gone rotten. And today in thousands of homes it is the number one staple.

Uses for it, is in the hundreds. It can be used on and in our homes, our cars, our gardens and so much more.

Here is just a few ideas what vinegar can be used for. First its great for hardwood floor cleaning, one cup vinegar diluted with one gallon of warm water will clean them. Mildew problem, vinegar used straight from the bottle will clean your tile and your grout mildew.

Vinegar will also kill not only weeds, but that nasty looking stuff that grows between our side walk cracks.

Our pets can benefit from vinegar also. Its great for itchy scaly ears. This is done with one tablespoon of vinegar to four tablespoons of water. Put solution on a rag and clean your pets ears. Vinegar also gets rid of skunk smells for those pets that happen to get sprayed. You can also spray vinegar around the yard to keep felines at bay.

Vinegar in your dish washer not only cleans the dish washer it can be used in the rinse cycle.

For your car, you can put vinegar in with your washer fluid, also wipe it diluted onto your windows to keep them frost free.

To keep your cut flowers fresh a pinch of sugar with a pinch of vinegar will do the job.

Add some vinegar to your laundry and you can see stains like ketchup and mustard disappear.

And you can of course clean your coffee pot with vinegar. Just make a pot of coffee with hot water and vinegar and see how shiny your pot looks.





 

Friday, December 09, 2011

Christmas Lights to Hang

How many of you buy to many Christmas lights, don't follow directions when hanging them, or hang them using a unstrudy ladder? Believe it or not there are alot of you out there.

There is a wrong way and a right way. The first step is to view your home as if you we're the passerby, and get some good vantage points. Vision where to place your lights as if you are the passerby viewing your decorations. View not only the house, but the porch and yard as well. Vision is the key here. You can even make a rough sketch before you start, after all you don't want a news report with your house, as the worse decorated do you. And you surely don't want to have your house look like a Griswold re-do.

Thursday, December 08, 2011

Beware

Just want to let scammers know that this blog is protected. I have been getting alot of scam comments, but they are filtered and monitored and can not go through. But it is a hassle for me to have to delete and filter them out. So I thought I would save the spammers and scammers know you can stop wasting your time now.

Wednesday, December 07, 2011

Faux Stone Veneer

Any home that has stone, will give you a feeling of solidity. And today the stone doesn't even have to be real. You can use faux stone veneer.

These stones although heavy, are no way near the weight of real stone. They are manufactured and are fitted and put together with mortar. They come in panels which make installation much faster.

When looking at them, everyone will think they are real.

The faux stone veneer is not as durable as the real thing, but will take some abuse.

They also make fire rated veneer is also available for over the fire place.

Tuesday, December 06, 2011

Poinsettias and Poison

 With the Holidays, and children, many wonder if poinsettias are poisonous to children, and pets as well. The answer is no, there is no danger to either.

There are a few toxic euphorbias, but poinsettias are not one of them.

 

Monday, December 05, 2011

Debt Free Christmas

How many times have you not paid bills in order to have Christmas gifts. Well, why not bring the New Year in, stress free with these few tips.

Pick names, if you have a large family. That why everyone still gets a gift but you only have to buy one.

Homemade gifts are always received by the heart. Gifts in a jar is just one idea. Homemade cookies are another.

Just setting a budget for your self and sticking to it, helps with the stress.

If you must, how about downsizing your list. Do you really need to buy for so many people.

Shop early, and use coupons. Also only buy items on sale.

Second hand gifts can be turned into homemade gifts by adding your special touch.

Happy Holidays

Friday, December 02, 2011

Office Green

Our home is not the only place to go green, how about your office as well. With a few cheap gadgets you can go green at the work place.

Available now are soy based toners, and they are recyclable, nontoxic and have no petroleum. They work with HP and Canon printers and Fax's.


Also available is the western digital caviar green power hard drive. Save with reducing power, and increase your energy efficiency. They run quieter and are cooler than other hard drives.

For lights, go LED, they use eighty percent less energy, and last way longer than your standard bulbs.

You can also use a occupancy motion sensor light switch. Easy to install it turns on only when your in the room. No more worrying if you left the switch on.

Thursday, December 01, 2011

Question of the Day

Do you think you can install tile flooring over plywood?

The answer is NO

Tile should be installed on cement board to help with water.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Poinsettias

With the Holidays coming, most people love to decorate with poinsettias. Now a days there are many colors to pick from. Reds, pinks, purples are all available now. You can even mix them up, like red and white to make a peppermint twist. Throw some evergreens in the mix to, for a great center piece. The poinsettias are great to add Holiday cheer at your door, your porch, patio or even in your home. What ever you do with them it will make a welcoming site.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Grainy Ceilings

If you have a ceiling that has a grainy texture, over time it can become dirty or even stained. This type ceiling can be difficult to clean or even repaint. You can take care of this problem by having a professional paint it or paint it your self.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Mice in Mobile Homes

Finding mice any where can be unsettling, even if you find them in your mobile home. Mice do carry disease and leave germs, so who wants them around. But even if you live in a mobile home, you can combat mice. With the right management you can prevent mice from your mobile home, and live mice free.

Keeping mice from getting to any food is the first vital step to take. Keeping your garbage outside is the best way to store it.

If you have any piles around your mobile home of junk items, its best to get rid of it. Keeping piles of junk any where gives mice a place to make their nest. This goes the same for outside items like toys and garden supplies. If you keep them stored away properly, mice will not mess in them.

Keeping your yard neat and clean will help to. Leaves are another place mice like to make their nest in. It also gives them a warm place to give birth to their babies.

Caulk any openings in and outside of your mobile home. This will keep mice from coming in the crevices. Remember mice are small and can get in through small cracks. If you have any holes, say from wiring, stick some steel wool in the holes.

Poisonous bait can be used also, but be careful if you have children or pets.

Check the skirting on your mobile home as well, mice will use this for a entrance into your home.

Just keeping up and cleaning will keep your home rodent free.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Pet Friendly Xmas Trees

If you have pets you will want to keep them safe from your Christmas tree. The first step in doing this is to make sure you cover your tree stand. A skirt for the tree will help prevent your family pet from drinking the water. The water you have in the base can actually make your pet sick. If you see your pets heading for your tree base, lore them away with some treats. If pets get ahold of needles, they can become stuck in your pets throat. Try to keep you decorations that hang on your tree up high so they are not tempted to play with them, this is especially tree for cats. If you pet gets hold of any leaves or berries from mistletoe it can cause their heart or blood pressure to drop. Any ribbons or strings can cause a pet to choke also. If you can try not to use tinsel, dogs can be attracted to it and they can also choke from this. Also tinsel does contain lead. So don't let children put this in their mouth. If any electrial cords are showing, tape them it can cause a pets death if they chew them.
  

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Thanksgiving drink ideas

Along with construction I also have a passion for food and cooking. So I wanted to share some drink ideas, that would go great with your Thanksgiving dinner. Wine, beer, and cocktails, any one of these will work great. For using red wine, a good Pinot Noir works really well with Turkey. If you choose to go with a white wine, a good pairing is Riesling or Sauvignon Blanc. They complaint not only the turkey but the side dishes as well.

Cocktails are always fun to make, and you can include your guests in the fun of helping as well. A good cocktail choose is a aperitif, as well as any gin cocktail, or even a good park avenue cocktail. All go great with turkey.

For after your meal tea is a great way to go. It pairs well with turkey to. Black teas are the best choice, like your Ceylon.

Which ever drink you go with, it will be great with your meal.

Happy Holidays
   

Friday, November 18, 2011

It's Winter where's the bugs

We know that during the winter months, bears hibernate, but did you know insects overwinter. Larvae for example burrow into their shelters, like leaves or mulch to keep warm during winter months. Nymphs may live under the ice surface of a pond during the winter. Pupae on the other hand will come out in the spring as a adult.

For insects, the purpose of overwintering is to find some warmth, in order to make it through the winter. The insect goes into what is called diapause, which halts its growth. During this time the insect goes through either physiological or biochemical changes, in for it to survive. The insect can tell when the days begin to grow longer, as in when its spring time.

There are even insects that migrate, like the Monarch butterfly. This insect can only survive in warm temps.

You also have insects that make their winter homes in our homes. They may choose our homes eaves, our siding, or cracks or crevices they can find.

The cluster fly, which some think is a house fly can cause much consternation for residents. These flies survive the winter months and can be a pest.

To control indoor emergence of overwintering pest, prevention can be done. Go over your home any seal any cracks or crevices. Caulk your doors and windows and any pipes. Any siding that has cracks needs to be caulked. The same with your foundation. Check your eaves and roofs, and also repair any torn screens.

Doing this will help in the spring, when insects are ready to come out in full bloom.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Sandpaper

When you have a woodworking project, you at some point will need sandpaper. And you will need the proper sandpaper for your project. You need to select not only the right paper but the right grit. If you are using the wrong paper, you could cause damage to your project.
 
The paper is graded by the number of the abrasive particles it has per inch. When the number is low that means the grit is the most coarse.
 
Then you have your grades, of sand paper. They are commercial and industrial. The difference in the two are what materials are used for the grit.
 
Next you have your abrasives. There are five types of sand papers in this category.
 
So make sure to choose your sand paper wisely.
 
 
 

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Green tips for Home

One of the greenest ways to save on heat, is a warm sweater, yes by wearing a warm sweater. When you dress warm, you can keep your thermostat at the 60 something range, and feel nice and warm at the same time. This can save up to almost 20 percent on your energy bill.

Have ceiling fans, well they can help also with saving, just by flipping the little black switch, will help to circulate the warm air, since it will rise.

Remember those little gadgets grand mom used to knit and sat them at the bottom of the doors. Well don't laugh, they help to keep any drafts from coming in. Don't have one, roll up and towel and it will work just as well.



 

Monday, November 14, 2011

The Clogged Toilet

Sooner or later it happens to all of us, the clogged toilet. Thankfully, due to a good plunger, this problem is a quick fix. But if you use the wrong type of plunger, the problem is not going to go away.

The flange type plunger is what you need for the toilet.
The bowl shape of your toilet will require this type. This is shaped so when placed in the toilet the plunger will create a good seal to do the unclogging. This is done by the good vacuum and pressure of this type of plunger.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Cleaning up Doggie Accidents

If you have a dog, it will at some point have a accident on your carpet. The way you take care of cleaning it, will determine if your pet will go there again. It may look clean to you, but to your dogs nose, well he can still smell his own scent. And in that case, he will make a deposit there again. In order to remove the smell you must use a enzymatic cleaner. What these are, is cleaners that contain bacteria and enzymes that ill digest all the proteins in the pets waste. Therefore neutralizing the order, and not masking it. You can make your own cleaner, store bought cleaners have ammonia and this makes the problem even bigger. Pet urine already contains ammonia, and using store bought products only makes the smell stronger for louring the pet back to the same spot. Steam cleaning is not a solution either, the heat sets the stain permanently into your carpet. The best way to rid the smell is to soak the spot with your enzyme cleaner for ten minutes. Then blot it up and allow the spot to dry. This may need to be done twice, depending on the spot. The stain may be removed with liquid dish soap, warm water, and vinegar.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Child Proofing Tips

If you have children you know how important it is to child proof your home or apartment. The first thing you want to do is to make sure your children can not get out of the home or apartment, or get into rooms that have not been child proofed yet.

If you have little ones, door knob covers come in handy, they prevent those little hands from getting a grip to turn the door knob and open the door. They are a good choice for all the doors in your home or apartment.

Closet doors are another place little ones can get in to and get hurt, so placing the knob covers there will help with this problem. The one down fall is if you have a lever type door handle, these type of handles are hard to child proof.

Don't forget those cabinet doors, they pose unsafe grounds for children also. Make sure especially in the bathroom and kitchen that these cabinets are secure. For this to be safe you can install interior latch's or external locks.

Also you can install interior draw locks to prevent wondering hands into any drawers in the kitchen. Also for kitchen safety don't for get those burners, get burner covers, and a oven tip safety feature to prevent accidents.

There are also latches for toilet seats, and other appliances in your home to prevent little ones from opening them.

Then you have the stairs in the home or apartment, safety gates here will help to prevent children from falling or climbing up the stairs. Safety gates can be placed in doorways also, from keeping the little ones from going into rooms completely.

In high rise apartments or second floor windows in homes, window guards are a great idea to have installed. No one wants to have a child fall out a window.

If your home has a fireplace, make sure you have it secure so your little one can not get close and get burned.

Also some other tips include making sure your hot water is not to hot, check the temp of your hot water heater. Smoke detectors on all levels of your home or apartment is another great safety feature. Carbon monoxide detectors near bedrooms, and electrical outlet covers are another safety tip to keep little ones safe.

If your furniture has hard corners, you may want to place some type of cushion on the ends. Try also to avoid glass end tables or glass coffee tables until the children are much older.

If you use blinds you may want to shorten or cut the cords so your child can not reach it. Also if you have furniture that can tip over, why not secure it to the wall.

Although accidents happen, you can try to avoid them with these simple steps.

Wednesday, November 09, 2011

What is MDF

The other day I had a customer ask me what is MDF. Well what MDF is, is a manufactured wood product, that is composed of wood fibers. They are then mixed with resin and also with wax, then pressed into the flat panels you buy. What you use it for is the same as if you we're using plywood. It is used often in buildings. It is not like your particleboard, the two are often mistaken for one another. When using MDF, you will find that it cuts very well, and has a very smooth surface to it. This makes it a great product when it needs to be painted. Most contractors use MDF find it is best to cut this wood out doors, since it makes alot of dust. The one disadvantage is, if unfinished MDF gets any exposure to moisture it will swell, and will then lose its strength. MDF, is also known as a medium density fiberboard. Just ask your salesperson to help you when going to purchase some.

Tuesday, November 08, 2011

Holidays on a Budget

We all know that times are tough for alot of people right now. And with the Holiday's coming the pressure is felt more by them, than maybe others. But on a budget or not you can still have a wonderful Thanksgiving. Just with a few simple ideas you can have a wonderful decorated home and a hefty meal without paying tons.
 
It really isn't about the decor, Thanksgiving is really all about family and being together for a good time, and a good meal. For the table as far as decor, you can use simple things like a bowl of fruit and pine cones from the backyard. Just placing some branches in a tall vase makes a wonderful arrangement. Acorns in a glass jar and some candles is another table decor idea. If you have any left over pumpkins they to with some acorns and pine cones can make a eye catching table centerpiece.
 
For a hefty meal that will not cost you a fortune, how about making the dinner a family effort. If everyone brings a dish, before you know it you have a family feast fit for a king. Need stuffing, how about using that day old bread, instead of throwing it out. For the bird alot of stores now have free turkeys for spending a certain amount, so check the bottom of your receipt. Don't go over board on pies that can be costly, try making some cookies with the kids shaped into pumpkins and candy corn.
 
Get everyone involved and have a wonderful and decorative Thanksgiving. Make it a family affair.
 
 

 

Sunday, November 06, 2011

The Power is Out

It's been happening alot in the past two months on the East coast. Storms knocking out power for days. For your refrigerator, this means loosing all your food. And this can be very costly. But if you have a gas generator, this is a option for you. All you need to do is make sure you have the correct size to power your fridge.
 
You are going to have to place your generator out doors, its not a safe machine to run in the home due to the carbon monoxide fumes. Make sure though that your generator is protected from the elements.
 
 
Before starting your generator, make sure the tanks are full of fuel. Also it is probably best to check all the other fluids as well.
 
Start your generator and let it run for a few minutes before you begin using the power.
 
You will have to run your fridge cord outside to the generator in order to use it. You know everything is fine if the refrigerator light is on and your condenser motor is running.
 

Saturday, November 05, 2011

Apartment Gardens

For the avid gardener who lives in a apartment community, can be somewhat frustrating. But with a little more creativity a beautiful garden can be made. All apartments with balcony's make this a easy task, and size is no bother.

With a little research on plants, the apartment gardener can create a shade garden. You just need to do a little shopping for plants that do great under balconies or canopies. Bleeding hearts are one choice you can go with.

Want some privacy, well how about growing it. If you place your plants just right you will block any view from the street or sidewalk. Using low plants and tall plants will give you a nice privacy fence and add charm to your balcony.

Just because you live in a apartment does not mean you can't grow veggies. Lots of veggies will grow in containers, so don't let the small space keep you from growing your own veggies. Herbs also do well as a container garden product.

You can also fit in some twinkle lights, and small water fountains, and make your balcony a place where you want to sit.




Friday, November 04, 2011

Kerf Chainsaw

Any country dweller can not live without their chainsaw. They use it for many things, especially fire wood. During the winter storms, it is the most important tool they have for any trees that feel.

What is a kerf chainsaw, well the kerf is actually the channel that is left by the chainsaw as it is cutting wood. Any chainsaw bar and chain will determine the width. If your chainsaw has a narrow kerf it is a light duty chainsaw or most likely a electric power chainsaw. These are really only good for trimming or doing light landscaping work. This type of chainsaw will not in any way stand up to cutting a tree.

So if you live in the country unless you are doing landscaping, you want to avoid this type of chainsaw.


Thursday, November 03, 2011

Recycle your old wood

When it comes to wood, you can use that old timber for new uses. Give it a chance in your kitchen for elegant counter tops, or how about the living room for a new floor look. You can have it reused by a professional, or do it your self for a weekend project. If it has any imperfections, that's even better, for a rustic look. There are many uses for old wood, from counter tops to making a kitchen table. Look in your local phone book for some carpenters and ask what they do with their scarps, and make them your treasure.

Wednesday, November 02, 2011

Rust and Tile

Glad your back Evielynne!

OK, lets get started. You have a tile surface, and it has a rust stain. You don't have to panic, with several options you can get the rust stain out. The best thing to do first is to try a natural method, if that doesn't work there are always commercial cleaners.

One way to get the rust stain out of your tile is to use a abrasive cleaner. Just rub gently because this method can damage the tile finish, especially if the tile is marble.

Another method is the pumice bar. These volcanic rocks are mild and just may do the trick.

The next tip is white vinegar and salt paste. These are ingredients right in your kitchen.

Lemon juice from a fresh lemon and salt is another abrasive cleaner you can make yourself.

The last option is to purchase a commercial cleaner.

Hope you find these tips helpful.


Tuesday, November 01, 2011

Terracotta Roofs

If your home has a terracotta roof, and it's having a issue, everything under lying can be destroyed. Your terracotta is very resilient, as long as you make sure its weathertight. If you do suspect a leak, a good sealant can be used.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Snow Plowing

The snowy season is almost upon us. And if you live in a cold climate state, you know the complexity of clearing snow from your driveway, or even your lot. Even if you have a plow, you know that snow can be heavy to push. Not being aware of this, can get you into trouble. Your plow can not only get stuck, but can break pieces of the equipment. Snow plowing isn't easy for first timers, it takes some practice. With the right amount of practice you will get the job done efficiently without doing any damage to your plowing equipment.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Window air

If you look at your windows and you have what looks like a extra pane, you have double glazed glass. Now a,days you can even get windows in triple glazed panes. What these extra glass panes do is creates air between each one. These types of windows are more energy efficient. They also help to reduce sound. You can also get the windows if various widths, and also with gas instead of air.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Weekend Project

If you have a free weekend, and have a outdated kitchen, why not do a counter top overlay project. You can create a new look on your counter tops just by installing a new one right over the old.

Counter top overlays fit just about all budgets, and by doing the work you save even more money. And whats even better, the whole project can be done over one weekend.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Fireplace's

There is nothing more romantic, than sitting by a fireplace, maybe sipping on some wine, with someone you love. But if your fireplace was not constructed well, that could mean disaster.

It is important to make sure all the internal components are properly installed. Make sure your damper and or smoke shelf is in proper working order.

It is also important to make sure your chimney is clean and free of debris.

Make sure also that your fireplace surround and your hearth are up to building codes. Also any external furnishing's must be up to par.

Do all this and your evening of romance will be a safe one.



 

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Landscape Tips

Timbers are in for landscaping, providing a soft look that is not only natural but adds to the blossoms and the foliage of your yard. These timbers are made so there is no rot. If laid side by side they make a nice looking walkway. When plastic edging is used as the perimeter it cuts down the amount of weeds and grass that will come between the timbers.
Another great landscaping tip is to use baffles. Baffles are small terraces that go horizontally across sloped hills. They are there to help hold any soil, or even mulch around your landscaped area. Baffles will also help with any erosion problems you may have. Again using plastic edging is helpful here. Baffles can be stone even brick, but using these materials should be placed by a professional. The best plants for baffle areas would be low growing perennials and also any ground covering plants.
Since erosion can be caused by having drainage problems, you can control the problem with installing some drainage pipes. If you have a property that slopes this can effect your landscaping. The problem with erosion in your landscaping is that it not only removes any soil, it damages the plants you have, and can even cause them to die. Another great tip for areas with erosion issues is to plant some turf grass.
This is a great book with helpful landscaping tips


Monday, October 24, 2011

What is your question

Do you have a remodeling question? I would love to know and answer your questions. Let me know yours.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Bath Safety

Most falls in a home happen in the bathroom. This is due to all the slippery surfaces that pose this hazard. But installing a safety device, like a grab bar can help with this risk.

For the elderly, this is a great safety precaution. It helps prevent falls and helps with the motor control of the elderly. It can also help them with their balance when needed.

The grab bar will need to be installed in the right place also. A grab bar can be installed not only on the inside of the tub, but on the outside as well. Safety bars near the toilet are also helpful to certain peoples needs.

Mats on the floor as well as the inside of the tub will help to prevent falls. If your tile in the bathroom is to slippery, you may want to change it to a more rough tile.

This is just a few ways to prevent and promote bathroom safety.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Tin Oxide

Marble may seem hard to clean, but it really isn't. Marble's surface has large and small pores, and plenty of them. The surface of marble is really unsealed also. So anything that gets spilled onto it will seep deep into the cracks and can be hard to clean up. You have to be careful what is used to clean marble also, because the cleaner can also become embed. However tin oxide will clean many products that are usually spilled on marble, such as coffee, tea even wine. In the store tin oxide is known as Putty Powder.


 

Friday, October 21, 2011

Barn Roofs

We often talk about roof's for homes and office's, but there are other structures to talk about also. And today it's about roof's for barn's. Since barns are a great essential part of a farm, it is just as important for a good roof. A barn after all protects not only machinery, but live stock. So as with a home or office, the type of roof will depend on the farm owners desires.

Your most common barn roof is called a gable. It is a one peak roof with two roof sides that are joined. Another type is your gambrel roof, this has different slopes and or angles on each peak. This is a more dramatic looking roof, and gives the barn more storage and headroom. Then there is the hip roof, which is a four sided roof. This works best with a barn that is single storied. This type of roof does not require siding like the gambrel or like the gable. Also the hip roof is the less expensive to install.

Other roofs include what is called a shed roof. This is the most easiest roof to construct. But it does have its faults, it doesn't have a lot of load bearing capacity to it. If the area gets alot of snow fall in the winter months this roof will not hold up. Next is the pyramid hip roof, which is compared to the hip roof. This type of roof holds up well in areas that get alot of snow. A roof that has different slopes and side lengths is called a salt box barn roof. This roof has a short side, which is a great covering for doors. You also have a round roof, this is found in most barns of Europe. Shaped like a half circle, it is very hard to construct. But it has the best headroom of all the roofs.


  

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Your yard in the fall

It does not matter where you live in the U.S, if it's fall you have yard work to do. Everyone will be winterizing their landscapes, cleaning up leaves and a variety of things to get ready for the next spring.

Fall is the time people clean up dead branches, clean up leaves, and get the lawn ready for new growth. Fall is also the time for pruning, depending on your bush's and plants. Pruning should always be done before the first frost. This will let your new growth harden before the harsh winters. Of course your fall cleanup will depend on what area of the U.S you live in.

Certain perennials and ornamental grass, will need to be cut back, this will help them to regenerate in the spring.

Fall is also the time for new planting. And is also a time of beautiful colors. You can enjoy mums and many other plants in the fall.

Planting grass seed in the fall is also better for, better growth in the spring. Its also a time to wonder if you would like to add any additional plants to your existing landscaping.

Clean up, sit back, and enjoy all the wonderful colors when your done.

 
 
  

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Moths

It does not happen to often, but it does. A moth or moth's get into our homes. If this happens, destruction can occur to our textiles and our clothes. Many fear moth's and therefore don't want to touch them. So there are ways to rid them, without using our hands directly. Here are just a few ways to do that.
If your lights are on, turn them off, this way the moths will leave the area, they are drawn to light.
Let them leave on their own, open closet doors, and dresser drawers, and let them escape through a open window.
Take moth infested materials outside, and shake them off. Hanging them outside over night will rid those moths and the larvae as well.
Freezing your garmets will also help to rid and kill not only the moth's but their larvae. Also washing any garmets in really hot water will give you the same results.
The old fashion way is to use mothballs. These can be poisionus to your pets so be careful. Place the mothballs in tight infested areas. Using these will also kill moths, and will prevent others from dropping in.

  

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Mulch

When you apply mulch to your shrubs, even around your foundation, it gives your home a nice curb appeal. It also creates a barrier between spaces of your yard. But best of all it conserves water, and helps to keep your plants happy and healthy. In winter months, the mulch will also help to keep your soil where it is applied warmer, and in the same area cooler in the hotter months.
 
There are a wide variety of mulch's to choose from. Pick the one that best suits your home as well as your landscape. You can choose from pine needles to pebbles, it is all in the nature of what will suit your home and yard. There is also mulch that comes in colors, like red or black. So it's all in the eye of the beholder.
 
  
  

Monday, October 17, 2011

Fall Leaves

The blaze of Autumn is breath taking. But when it covers your yard with leaves, well the beauty ends there. So what does one do with all those leaves?
 
Well you could recycle them. You can use them for many craft projects. Also they come in handy for fillers in gift baskets. And also they make great backgrounds in collages.
 
When using the leaves make sure to clean them before using them for indoor craft projects. Make sure they are dry before using them also. They make great decorations hot glued on objects such as baskets, and lamps.
 
During October, the leaves make wonderful Halloween decorations. Filling large bags, with the leaves you can create huge pumpkins. This is a great way to recycle at the same time.
 
There's also using the leaves for fun, how about jumping into a pile of them with the kids. After your done, you can turn the leaves into mulch for your plants.
 

 


 

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Great Books to have



Got a problem with grout? Open The Complete Photo Guide to Home Repair (to page 98) and watch your tiling worries dissolve before the simple beauty of photography. Black & Decker has anticipated your every question and problem with interior, exterior, and home systems repairs, and detailed the solutions in just over 500 pages. In no other human endeavor is a visual guide so important as home repair (well, maybe brain surgery), so this is a crucial aid to the handyperson. Easy-to-find sections on floors, insulation, roofing, chimneys, water heaters, wall switches, air conditioning, and much more are well-designed, brilliantly illustrated, and carefully outlined with step-by-step instructions from masters. The photos in particular are extremely valuable, offering many different views (sometimes even exploded) of the operation in question, and always showing just enough to communicate without overwhelming the reader with too much detail. These alone would be worth the price of the book, but the written explanations and instructions are also very helpful, offering tools, materials lists, and hints that wouldn't occur to the amateur. The book finishes with a maintenance schedule to help you keep repairs from becoming serious, and the end papers have conversion charts and tables that you'll use time and again. If you can't have Norm the master carpenter over to help you fix your old house, The Complete Photo Guide to Home Repair is the next best thing. --Rob Lightner --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


The indispensable reference guide for every homeowner, guaranteed to help you maintain and improve your home while saving time and money. Covering everything from replacing faulty faucets and showerheads to curing the quirks of an air conditioner, this book provides step-by-step illustrated instructions, plus a comprehensive chapter on tools. Includes more than 3,000 instructional photographs, illustrations, charts, and diagrams. Let New Fix-It-Yourself Manual guide you through: * Fixing a broken dryer by testing the thermostat, thermal fuse, heating coils, etc. * Troubleshooting electric and gas range problems and fixing them * Reupholstering and reweaving chair seats * Stocking up on the proper tools and supplies for fixing electronics * Installing, testing, and repairing speakers, including maintaining proper polarity * Repairing broken handbags and suitcases properly and professionally * Fixing small engines in yard and workshop tools * Restoring broken air conditioners, heaters, and dehumidifiers * Safely disassembling, testing, and repairing a chain saw

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Boys Bedroom Idea

There are many boys who love Hockey, so why not create them a hockey themed bedroom.
Use colors from their favorite team, and paint the walls, and get the colors in their bedding. A two tone effect of team colors on the walls is another transition you can make. You may also include murals or decals to place on the wall of their favorite team or player.
For your child's bed, how about making a goal headboard. A real goal will fit a twin or full size bed in it to serve as your hockey goal headboard. Once you put your bed into it, the hockey goal set will surround the bed, on the top you can hang helmets, for more decor.
Use hockey equipment to decorate the walls, like using the sticks, criss crossed on the wall. Online maybe you can even find some vintage sticks to use. Also use anything that is hockey related, photos artwork etc.
Also photos of your favorite players framed and hung on the walls look great. Also some hockey jersey's make great wall hangings.
Your child will love his new hockey room.
  

Friday, October 14, 2011

Your firebox

If you need to replace your firebox there are several ways for you to do this. If your fireplace is very expensive you may want to call a professional. But if you have a functional box you can replace this yourself. Before you attempt this make sure your firebox is a prefab. Due to the fact that prefab's have panels that can be replaced.
 
It is also recommended that you contact a professional before you start also and confirm that your box is not part of your structural fire code.
 
If you get the go ahead, then go ahead and get your replacement parts.
 
 
  

 

Thursday, October 13, 2011

A faux look

For interior even exterior walls you can give any area a great look with faux stone or brick look. It's not a easy job, but well worth it in the end. With simple tools like paint, brushes and a sponge you can design any stone or brick faux look you desire.

With painters tape you can create your squares to make a stone wall look. You can also make perfect lines where needed.

Play with colors to get the look you want. You can create the look of your wall any way you wish, you don't need any guides. You also create your grout look, with your painting skills.

Have fun and be creative.



 

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Driveway oil stains

Any one who has a driveway is going to at some point get a oil stain on it. It doesn't matter how it got there, but how you are going to get it out. Because left over time, you are going to have a unsightly looking driveway.
 
To start you can apply some absorbent material to the oil, and this should stop it from getting worse.
 
A warm oil that emulsifies will also be of big help.
 
At any automotive store you can also find a dry compound.
 
But you can also try this method. In a bucket mix some warm water with dish soap. You want to then scrub the stain with a nylon brush. Take some clean rags and start to absorb the soapy solution. Then apply cat litter or even sawdust to the area. Let it sit for a few and then sweep away. You may need to re do this method several times until your stain is gone.


 

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Todays Product


An improperly installed roof can lead to extensive damage. But now homeowners can learn how to do the job right with Smart Guide: Roofing. It shows readers how to install all of the most popular roofing materials correctly and efficiently. Through easy-to-follow, illustrated instructions, readers learn how to estimate the amount of materials needed for the job, install roofing and flashing, and find and fix roof leaks. Tips provide important information to those looking to hire a contractor. Additional chapters address ladder and rooftop safety and proper attic and roof ventilation.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Microwave Odors

As your microwave gets older, it can start to smell, sometimes like something is burnt. Did you know why this happens? It is because over time the plastic that is inside starts to absorb food odors.

These odors can be taken care of with some simple cleaning steps. Take a microwavable bowl and add one cup of water, then add two tsps of baking soda. Then just place the bowl into your microwave and cook for three minutes. Doing this should absorb the odors, and it will also loosen dry food that may be inside.

If you have a plate inside your microwave take it out and clean it with hot soapy water. Also wipe the inside of the microwave with a soapy rag.

If you can not get the smell out, try mixing a 1/4 of bleach with one quart of water and wipe your microwave down with this mixture. Make sure to rinse the inside with a clean wet rag.

Mixing one part lemon juice to two parts water into a microwave bowl, and cooking for five minutes will also help with the odors.


Sunday, October 09, 2011

Your home and Lightning

If your home is ever hit by a lightning strike, it could do some damage to not only your electrical system but to your electronic devices as well. However if your home is protected with a lightning protection system, you could avoid this risk.

Air terminals, also known as lightning rods are a great way to protect your home from lightning strikes. These are placed at the most highest point of your home.

Another way to protect your home is called grounding systems. These are cooper stakes that are placed into the ground.

There are also varistor surge protectors that can be installed, via your electrical service.

These are just some ideas to help you if you decide to protect your home against lightning strikes.



   

Saturday, October 08, 2011

Today's product pick



  • Quickly recovers from periods of heat and drought
  • Grows 33-percent thicker than ordinary tall fescue
  • Contains Scotts exclusive Thermal Blue Kentucky Bluegrass
  • Aggressively spreads to repair thin and bare spots
Scotts Turf Builder Grass Seed contains our exclusive WaterSmart coating that absorbs 100-percent more water than uncoated seed and keeps it moist twice as long to help prevent it from drying out - even if you miss a day of watering.

Friday, October 07, 2011

Click Lock Flooring

What is click lock flooring? It means it is free floating, it is not nailed into place, or glued into place. It means that the boards for the flooring just snap together. Then the edges are held down by the floors trim. If you have this type of flooring, and a board gets damaged, it is a easy fix. These types of floors are easy to take apart, for repair replacement.

The first step to do a repair, is to take a pry bar and remove any trim that is around the area.

Next wiggle loose the boards that are closest to your damaged area. Lay the boards down, that you remove in order that you removed them. This will allow for a easy re-install.

When you finally reach the damaged board, remove and replace it. It's that easy.

All that is left is putting the floor back together, in the same order you removed it. When you are finished with that process, re nail your trim, and enjoy your repaired floor.


This is a good reference book to have on hand.

Thursday, October 06, 2011

Shower Glass

If you have glass shower doors, you are going to see a transparent film on the surface. Now you can clean them with natural cleaners, that you can make from products already in your home.
A window squeegee will help keeping soap scum and other grime from your glass shower doors. It may sound like alot of work, but if you use the squeegee after a shower, it will help. You will notice the buildup won't be as much, or will be gone.
Using plain old dish soap works wonderful for getting rid of soap scum. You can clean the soap scum with the dish soap right on a sponge, or make yourself a solution in a spray bottle. After you clean your glass doors with the dish soap all you will need to do is rinse the door clean.
If you want to make yourself a good disinfectant, white vinegar is the way to go. White vinegar is great for glass, and helps remove hard water spots. Making a 50/50 cleaning solution of the white vinegar and water is all you will need, there is no need for rinsing afterwards.
Good old baking soda is wonderful for any stains that are hard to remove. All that you need is a good scrubbing pad and your baking soda. You use it like you would your abrasive cleaner. You will however, need to rinse and dry your glass shower doors. The good thing about using the baking soda is, it will leave a clean smell in your bathroom.


Wednesday, October 05, 2011

Home Improvement Books

I want to share some great books with my readers on Home Improvement.


Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Bostitch Nailer



Nail down siding in no time with the powerful, precise Bostitch N66C-1 Coil Siding Nailer. This lightweight tool features a magnesium housing that makes it durable enough to repeatedly withstand the rigors of all-day use. And with adjustable nail depth and a soft rubber foot, you can work with a range of siding materials, including soft woods. The N66C-1 Siding Nailer works with any air compressor and has a tool-free adjustable exhaust that directs spent air away from you when you're working.

Monday, October 03, 2011

Greenhouse Winter Heat

What you need to keep your greenhouse warm in the winter months:
  • 55-gallon water barrels, painted black
  • Foam insulation
  • Large wood burning stove
  • Circulation fans
  • Bricks or stones
Greenhouse's collect and trap heat, but in the winter you sometimes need to provide additional heat. Especially in very cold months. Properly orienting a greenhouse structure can help with your auxiliary heat.

The best thing to do for your greenhouse is to fashion it in a east to west position. You want one full length side to be exposed to the southern sky as much as possible. This will use the winter sun to warm your greenhouse. You want to have the back of the greenhouse north to a existing structure like your home or a outbuilding. This gives your greenhouse extra wind protection.

Another option is to use water to store heat. A 55 gallon water barrel in black placed inside the greenhouse will capture the sun's heat. Any heat accumulated during the daytime will release at night, after the temps have dropped.

Its not a bad idea to insulate your greenhouse either. For plastic greenhouse's insulate with a foam sheet. These sheets get placed over your greenhouse at night, and then removed during the day. Installing some extra plastic to the interior will also add additional insulation. For hard structures, double glazed glass is a great greenhouse cover. Insulate your end walls and north wall with a moisture proof foam insulation.

You can also install a wood burning stove, placed in the center of your greenhouse. Making sure the vent goes through the roof, with a metal plate to dissipate any heat. This ensures your plastic will not melt. Large circulation fans near your roof of your greenhouse will help to circulate warm air. You can also stack bricks and stones around your wood stove to create thermal heat.



 This greenhouse is a good deal, and works great.

Sunday, October 02, 2011

Left over Varnish

We know that varnish needs special brushes and is difficult to clean up if spilled. But storing it is not as difficult if you know how.
 
To store your varnish, you should pour all leftovers back into the canister. Then make sure you seal the canister securely.
 
Make sure if there are any drips on the can to wipe them off.
 
After cleaning up the can you want to store it in a room that is dark and cool. Don't let the varnish get exposed to direct sunlight. Also the temp should be 50 to 80 at the most. Varnish that gets to cold will solidify. And then it is unusable. If it gets to hot it will combust.
 
Make sure to keep all flammable items away from your varnish as well.
 
   

Saturday, October 01, 2011

Wood Stove

The cost of energy is going up, and people are looking for ways to save. So the wood stoves are on the rise again for heating homes. But building the right fire is important. Keeping it burning through the night is a art.
 
When you have burned through your first load of the kindling, you are left with red hot embers. So you want to rake these embers to the back of your stove near your air inlet.
 
Now reload your stove with your fire logs. Stacking all the way up to the baffle, but not blocking the airflow inlet. You then want to open your air control all the way, this will remove moisture from your fire logs. Just leave the control open for about fifteen minutes, no longer.
 
Now shut the draft control and position it on low. This setting varies to your wood stove model.
 
Doing this should let your fire logs burn through the night.