My Blessing In Disguise


Tips To Help You Successfully Install Mulch In Your Yard’s Landscaping

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Using mulch in your yard’s landscaping is a great way to keep weeds down and make the area visually attractive. There are many options to consider to use as mulch materials, such as gravel and wood chips. Here are some tips to consider when installing organic and inorganic mulch in your yard. Prepare the Mulch Site Before you install a layer of wood chips or gravel, be sure to make room for the mulch. This helps you prevent the mulch from spilling out onto surrounding areas, such as lawn. Wood chips and gravel caught in your lawn mower can damage its blade. Depending on the depth you want your mulch layer to be, dig that depth of soil from the area. For example, if you want to install a two inch layer of gravel, you will need to remove at least two inches of topsoil from the area.  Next, you will need to install a layer of geotextile fabric over the soil. This layer of fabric helps keep down weed growth through your mulch and also helps prevent the soil from working its way up into the mulch.  Lay down the geotextile fabric, overlapping the fabric lengths by three inches to keep the barrier intact and strong against weed growth and mulch movement down into the soil. Also, use landscape fabric stakes spaced regularly to hold down the edges of the geotextile fabric lengths. Consider Existing Vegetation As you are planning to install gravel or wood mulch over a layer of landscape fabric, prepare the soil for any existing vegetation that is already growing there. If there are trees or plants you are going to mulch around, make sure you provide space around their stem or trunk when you install the landscape fabric and the mulch. It is recommended to leave three inches of space around the trunk of stem of plants and trees. Cut a slit or a hole in the geotextile landscape fabric to accommodate for the stem or trunk of any existing vegetation. And if you plan to plant vegetation after you have installed the landscape fabric and mulch, leave an appropriate-sized hole in the fabric and mulch to allow the planting of each plant or tree. Be mindful of the type of mulch you are laying over your landscaping. If the mulch is inorganic, such as gravel or other rock, it is important to add fertilizer to the soil before planting and periodically thereafter to provide continued nutrients to your plants. Organic mulch, such as wood chips will break down naturally and add nutrients back into the soil to provide food for your vegetation. Use these tips to help you successfully install landscape mulch in your yard. If you’re looking for some gravel for your landscaping projects click here for more...

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Benefits Of Having Your Farmhouse Basement Waterproofed

Posted by on 1:30 pm in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Benefits Of Having Your Farmhouse Basement Waterproofed

Homes over 50 years old hold a lot of charm and character. Along with distinct craftsmanship and appeal, there can be flaws in the original design or overall age in the foundation of the home. If you currently have a small leak in your basement, or the water begins to rise every time there is a heavy rainstorm, it may be time to call in the pros.  Here are a few benefits of having your old farmhouse basement waterproofed. Improves Property Value Calling in a contractor who specializes in basement wall bracing as well as waterproofing can be an overall improvement to both your home’s exterior and interior. A new, waterproofed basement helps to improve home value and increase the overall appraised value. Exterior waterproofing means excavating the walls of your farmhouse basement and digging a new drain system to help water flow away from your home securely. New drywall, wall straightening and added support and reinforcement helps take your basement from wet and damp to dry and new. Reduces Mold Contamination Over time, damp areas are prone to added mold and mildew growth. This can lead to serious respiratory issues that can affect your entire family as well as guests. Destroy mold on contact and keep it from spreading throughout your home with a new waterproof basement solution. Basement waterproofing is more than just patching cracks and areas that have water seeping through. Re-grading the entire area, sealing off basement walls as well as adding a new crock and sump pump help create a cleaner, mold-free living space. Creates A New Living Space Increasing home value is one thing, but actually creating a new living space in your older basement is one of the best benefits of having a waterproofed basement space. Adding a deluxe laundry area, game room or man cave helps to make your home feel bigger while allowing you to gain a living area. No more worrying about priceless items getting wet or damaged should a flood occur. With a new drain tile system, water is rerouted away from your home and basement, making it a dry and suitable area to use on the inside. Generates Better Air Quality Mold and damp carpeting and furniture can leave behind uncomfortable odors that can travel throughout your farmhouse. With a new waterproof basement, the old concrete floor is removed and new drain tiles are replaced with rock aggregate to absorb and carry away unwanted water seepage. A new clean basement boosts better air quality by keeping bacteria-causing odors away for good. If you think your older farmhouse basement would benefit from a waterproof redo, call the pros today and get started on your next home improvement...

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The Impact Of Impact Windows: You Can Benefit Even When There Isn’t A Storm

Posted by on 10:54 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on The Impact Of Impact Windows: You Can Benefit Even When There Isn’t A Storm

If you have just moved into an area that has the good fortune to be less impacted by hurricanes and tornadoes than other regions, you might think you’ll be OK buying regular windows when you buy your home. While you might not need the strength of the impact windows for those specific weather phenomenon, having impact windows is still a good idea. The windows have enough strength and are constructed well enough to provide you with a lot of advantages. Hail Happens No matter where you live, there is a risk of hail. Some areas tend to get really small hail that is more annoying than anything else, but other areas can find themselves beseiged by larger hail — and those areas aren’t necessarily the typical huge-hail areas like you find in the Midwest. Arizona, for example, can have some substantial hail. If you are in an area where you might have the chance of encountering these storms, you should get impact-resistant windows. Remember, hail does not necessarily fall straight down — it usually comes in at an angle, and it isn’t unusual to find a broken window or two after a storm. With impact-resistant windows, you can reduce your chances of having to clean up broken window glass after a hail storm. Safe and Sound Impact-resistant windows are also great for home security reasons. They do not shatter as easily, so people trying to break in aren’t going to be able to simple break through a window. The glass isn’t totally break-proof, remember, but it’s tough enough that it will frustrate and drive away people looking for an easy target. The combination of glass that won’t break easily plus the noise made when trying to break the window would scare off most people. Safe From Sounds You’ll also notice way better sound insulation. The glass has to be solid and tough to withstand wind and flying debris, and sound waves are no match for the material. The impact-resistant glass helps dampen sound waves, resulting in less sound being transmitted through the glass and into the room. While you might hear some sound, it will be substantially reduced and seem quieter than if you had regular windows. Even if you’re now living in an area where life is relatively calm, you can’t go wrong by installing impact windows. With increased security and comfort, impact windows are a suitable choice for any...

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Avoiding Unsightly Black Stains On Your Asphalt Rooftop

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If your asphalt shingles are suffering from black stains, you are most likely concerned about where they are coming from and how to remove them. Black algae tends to grow on asphalt shingles in areas where humidity levels are high. Here are some steps you can try in removing these distracting stains and how to keep them from recurring in the future. Use An Appropriate Solution To Remove Stains Head to your local hardware or home goods store to see if you can locate an appropriate cleanser made especially for the removal of black algae from asphalt shingles. These solutions will most likely have bleach as well as TSP (trisodium phosphate) as the main agents in the ingredient list. When these two ingredients work in conjunction, they are effective at removing stains from asphalt shingles with ease. Use a soft-bristled scrub brush to apply the solution to the shingles with gloved hands, and rinse well afterward. It is best to cover any foliage under your rooftop before applying this solution. Try To Keep Your Rooftop Dry To Avoid Algae When mold spores make their way onto a moist rooftop, black algae tends to be the result. To help keep this algae from forming, keep excessive moisture from your rooftop. Cut back overhanging tree branches so the sunlight can get to your roof after inclement weather to dry it quickly. Removing debris like branches or leaves will also help keep the shingles from staying wet. Use Gutters On All Tiers Of Asphalt Roofing If your home has more than one tier of roofing, it is important to place gutters under each one. If you fail to place gutters on upper levels, moisture will drip down to a lower tier, possible causing black algae to show up due to the amount of moisture hitting the roof. Make sure to clear out debris from within your gutters regularly so water accumulation does not occur. If this happens, overflow can also cause black algae to occur. Talk To A Roofing Specialist About An Upgrade If black algae continues to be a problem, you may want to consider using algae-resistant shingles on your rooftop. Small pieces of copper are intertwined with the asphalt within this type of shingle. Copper will help keep algae from forming, making your rooftop look like new for years to come. These shingles can be placed on top of your existing asphalt shingles if desired. Contact a residential roofing specialist for more...

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Copper Roofing Is A Great Choice In Hurricane Zones

Posted by on 2:49 pm in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Copper Roofing Is A Great Choice In Hurricane Zones

When you live in an area where hurricanes are common, you need to pay close attention to your roofing choice. Too light or loose, and it will blow right off, leaving your home exposed to the wind and rain. While many homeowners in hurricane areas opt for concrete tiles or slate roofs, there is another less-common choice to consider: copper. Copper roofing might not be very common, but it offers a number of benefits in windy, rainy, coastal hurricane-prone towns. Copper is heavy. If you’ve ever picked up a section of copper pipe or a copper sculpture, you know how heavy it is. A copper roof is not going to be blown off your home in a storm. You will want to have an engineer look over your home to ensure it’s strong enough to support the roof. However, most homes in hurricane-prone areas are build quite sturdily and with the knowledge that some sort of heavy roof, like concrete or slate, will be put on it. Copper won’t become eroded by salt. Even if you’re a ways inland, those hurricane rains can be quite salty after picking water up from the ocean. Over time, this salt can cause damage to some metals like aluminum and steel. Copper, however, is impervious to salt damage. Just look at how strong the Statue of Liberty is, even after all those years on the Atlantic Coast! The copper will take on a green color after a few years, but that happens regardless of whether you’re in a coastal area or not. Copper is not as noisy as you might think. Are you imagining the sound of rain falling on a metal roof and dreading the first storm with your copper roof? Relax; the roof is a lot quieter than you’d imagine. Your roofing company will place the copper roofing on top of a wooden underlayment and some layers of insulation. The wood and insulation will absorb the sound, so you don’t hear anything more than you’d hear when rain falls on a shingle or tile roof. Copper will make your home look unique. Do you really want to have the exact same concrete tile roof as all your neighbors? A richly colored copper roof will give your home a very unique look. Everyone in your neighborhood will know of your house, and your curb appeal will increase dramatically. When the roof is new, it will look like a new penny, and eventually, it will take on that gorgeous green color. For more information, contact a home roofing service near...

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Some Points To Consider When Buying A New Garage Door

Posted by on 3:18 pm in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Some Points To Consider When Buying A New Garage Door

A new garage door can improve the curb appeal of your home, as well as enhance home security and help insulate your garage. There are many different styles of doors to choose from, which can be a bit overwhelming. Here are some things to consider to help narrow down your choice. Price If your budget for a new door is tight, you probably want to choose a stock door off the shelf. A single-layer aluminum door without any decorative embellishments is an affordable option. Each thing you add to the base door increases its price. While you have a lot of options in doors, if you want windows, decorative panels, or a luxurious material such as solid wood, you’ll have to pay much more. If your budget isn’t a concern, then you may want a high-end, custom-made garage door that perfectly complements your property. Insulation Insulating quality is another factor that might be important to you if you want to control the climate in your garage. If it gets very hot or very cold in your area and you plan to use your garage for a workshop or to store household goods, then you want a door that keeps out extreme temperatures. You can buy insulated doors made from different materials. The thing they have in common is a layer of insulation sandwiched between two or three layers of wood or steel. You can shop for doors based on their insulation rating to make sure the door performs to your expectations. Maintenance You also want to think about how much maintenance your garage door will require. Every door needs periodic maintenance to the track and springs to keep it functioning well, but different materials require different amounts of general maintenance to keep the door looking good. For instance, wood is beautiful, but you’ll have to stain or paint it regularly to prevent paint bubbles and peeling. Wood may also warp, swell, crack, or deteriorate from humidity or insect damage. A wood door requires the most maintenance of all garage door materials because it is organic and is affected by the environment. Aluminum, fiberglass, and vinyl are all easy to care for. About all you have to do is wash the doors to keep them clean. Aluminum dents easily, and scratches in metal doors are more visible if the paint is on the surface. If you have active kids playing around the garage, such as with a basketball hoop, then you may need to make repairs to an aluminum door occasionally. Vinyl hides scratches well since the color is all the way through the door rather than just on the surface; however, vinyl might fade from sun exposure or crack in extreme temperatures. Fiberglass is an excellent material for a garage door if you want a door that is practically maintenance free. Fiberglass is very strong, so it resists scratches and dents, and it doesn’t deteriorate due to environmental conditions. In addition to the above factors, you also need to think about how the appearance of the door will match your home. When it comes to garage door appearance, your choices are nearly endless. You can pick from a variety of colors and window configurations. You can even buy doors with a textured surface that looks like wood grain. With...

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How To Repaint Your Home’s Metal Front Entry Door

Posted by on 10:37 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on How To Repaint Your Home’s Metal Front Entry Door

If you recently moved into a house with a metal front door that has clearly seen better days, then you will be happy to learn that you can repaint the door yourself to save some money. While painting a metal door is a bit different than painting one made of wood, the process is very similar. As long as you have some basic DIY experience and a willing spirit, you can complete this project over the weekend even if you have never painted metal before. To paint your home’s metal entry door, you need the following tools and supplies: doorstoppers drop cloth sandpaper tacky cloth mineral spirits cotton cloth masking tape small paint roller  oil-based metal primer paint oil-based metal paint Follow these steps to paint your metal entry door like a professional painter: Step 1: Using two door stops or small heavy objects, block the door on each side so that it is unable to swing around while you are working. Place a plastic drop cloth under the door to protect your flooring. Step 2: Use the masking tape to cover the metal hardware and doorknob so that they will not get paint on them. This will save you time for having to deal with paint removal when you are done painting the door. Step 3: Using the sandpaper, rub down the entire door and rough up the existing paint. By roughing up the door’s previous paint job, you are creating microscopic areas for the door’s new primer to stick to. You also need to sand down any areas where the existing paint on the door has cracked or chipped. Sand until everything is smooth and no more visible damage exists. Step 4: Wipe down the door with some mineral spirits applied to a clean cotton cloth. The mineral spirits will remove any grease or oils from the door. Once the mineral spirits have dried, then you should wipe down the entire door with the tacky cloth to remove any residual dust from sanding. Step 5: Using a paint roller with a low nap, apply a coat of oil-based metal primer paint. By choosing a roller with a low nap and painting very carefully, you can get a nice even coat of primer on the door without leaving behind groves or peaks in the primer paint. Step 6: Finally, using a clean paint roller, apply a layer of metal paint to your front metal entry door. If you like the results with a single coat of paint, then once the door dries your project is completed. If you prefer to use more paint, then wait for the door to dry and apply one more...

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Designing A Home Fire Suppression System

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There are a couple of common options for fire suppression in residential spaces. Here is a guide to options and strategies for home fire protection.  Most Common Options for Fire Suppression Smoke detectors are one of the most common fire safety options in residential spaces. They are very useful for detecting fires early on and alerting nearby people to act quickly. Many homeowners also choose to install fire sprinklers as an added layer of security. With a fire sprinkler system in your home, you can start to work against a fire before the fire department arrives. Many homeowners are beginning to use home monitoring systems as well, which can be hooked up to many fire sprinkler systems. If a fire is detected, it may alert your home security company or your building manager. You can also have these systems send alerts to your mobile phone so that you’ll be informed of potential fires right away, whether or not you’re on the property at that moment.  How to Choose Your Option You might be wondering how much you need to invest in your home’s fire suppression system. Should you simply get smoke detectors? Or should you spending the money for fire sprinklers and a monitoring system as well? The answer may depend on who lives in your home and what’s in it. If you have residents who would not be able to fend well for themselves in a fire, such as elderly parents, children, or visually impaired family members, then going the extra distance to protect your house is a great idea. If you have a lot of high dollar items, then spending the extra money may be a good idea to protect your valuables as well. And since the addition of extra fire suppression methods can raise your home’s value and reduce your property insurance premiums, it’s probably a good idea for all homes if you can afford it.  A Gradual Roll-Out Option Your fire suppression team can help you create a plan for gradually rolling out these changes, as well. You might start out with a simple smoke detector system, but leave room for fire sprinklers to be added later. When you can afford it, add the fire sprinklers and make sure that they are compatible with a home monitoring system. That way, when the time comes, you can easily add a monitoring system once you have the time and spare cash.  For more information, contact local professionals like Nor Cal Fire...

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The Most Common Radiant Floor Heating Mistakes

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Are you thinking about installing radiant floor heat? While radiant floor heat can be installed on your own, there are some very common mistakes that could botch the entire installation. Radiant floor heating involves a sequence of heated tubes that are installed throughout the floor and under your flooring. If something goes wrong, it doesn’t just require fixing the entire installation — it might even be a fire or safety hazard. Not Properly Insulating Insulation is absolutely critical to the proper installation of radiant flooring. Radiant flooring relies upon insulation to be able to capture the heat of the pipes. Without insulation, radiant heating will be unusually expensive. It also won’t disperse across the floor properly — you’ll end up with hot spots and cold spots rather than an even heating across the surface. You should always check on the proper insulation type to use with your radiant heating installation. Running the Pipes Too Deep or Too Shallow The pipes have to be run in proximity to the floor itself in order to distribute the heat. If you run the pipes too deep, the flooring won’t heat up. If you run the pipes too close to the surface, the floor will get too hot. Always look up the recommended depth for your flooring option and materials — and test out the depth of the piping before finishing the job. Installing the Wrong Type of Flooring Radiant heating is designed to work with special types of flooring. Engineered hardwood and ceramic tile are among the most popular — and some types of natural stone. Radiant heating will be less useful with carpeting and may be unpleasantly hot with laminate. When you calibrate and install your radiant flooring, consider the types of flooring that will be placed over it. You may need a stronger heat source, for instance, with carpeting. Testing the Pipes After Pouring After the pipes are laid, a foundation is generally poured — over which the flooring will be installed. You should always test your radiant heating before pouring the foundation, as it’s almost always impossible to recover the pipes after pouring. If you discover a problem after pouring, you’ll need to restart the installation from the beginning. Hiring a skilled and experienced contractor, like Adams Plumbing & Heating, is usually the best bet when it comes to radiant floor heating. Even the most determined of DIYer will usually see benefits from making sure that the installation is done correctly rather than taking the...

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3 Facts About Clay Tile Roofs

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When you are looking at different roofing materials for your new house, you may be struck by the beauty of tile roofs. These tiles are generally shaped like half a barrel and are stacked up on each like shingles would be. Roofing tiles are also generally made out of clay that has been fired and glazed so that they will be hard and durable. There are also some tiles that are out of plastic and concrete. They will give you the same look as clay tiles, but may save you some money if that’s a worry.  Clay Tiles and Climate Clay tiles are generally associated with warmer climates. You often see them in the Southwest, especially on homes that look like they have been made out of adobe. However, they also work in cold climates, so if you live somewhere that gets a lot of snow and sub-freezing temperatures, you can still get roofing tiles. If you are worried, you can choose to avoid the traditional clay or terra cotta and choose the tiles made out of plastic or concrete instead. The only person who will know the difference is you.  Clay Tile Lifespan You may be concerned about how long your roof is going to last. Fact is, clay tile roofs have a long lifespan. One of these roofs can last for decades. The lifespan may vary some depending on whether you choose to use clay, concrete, or tile.  Clay Tile and Weight Another worry you may have about using roofing tile, whether it’s concrete, plastic, or terra cotta, is about how much your roof is going to weigh. While an individual tile may not weigh much, a whole lot of tiles put together are going to end up weighing quite a bit. If you decide that you want to go with roofing tiles while your house is being built, your builder can reinforce the weight-bearing elements of your house so that they can support the additional weight of the tile. If you are retro-fitting your house, your roofer should be able to add in some extra supports to bear any extra weight that your roofing tiles will add. If you are building a house and are looking for a roof that will last for a long time and will make your house look good, you may want to consider clay roofing tiles. For more information, contact professionals like Danny Odom & Son...

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