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How To Fix Noisy Vinyl Siding

Posted by on Feb 3, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on How To Fix Noisy Vinyl Siding

Vinyl siding naturally contracts and expands as the temperature and UV exposure outside change. If vinyl siding in your home is improperly installed, it can cause a cracking or squeaking noise as it moves. This can wake you up in the middle of night, and, in general, is an unnecessary disturbance. Thankfully, fixing your vinyl siding so that it can move properly and noiselessly on the side of your home is a fairly simple process that requires a few basic tools and the right technique. What You’ll Need You’ll need a crowbar, a hacksaw, a hammer, and inch and a quarter roofing nails, all of which can be found at most hardware stores if you don’t already have them at home. You may also need a step ladder, depending on the height the noisy siding is located at. Finding the Noise Vinyl siding that is properly nailed into the side of your home should move about a half inch. Gently grasp the bottom edge of each piece of siding and move it back and forth. If the siding does not move at all, that panel is a noise culprit. Test every board of siding to determine which ones need to be fixed. Fixing the Noise First, take the crow bar and gently shimmy the base of the board above the board that does not move, so that the boards unlock from each other. Lift up the bottom edge of the board above the offending board, and locate the nails that fasten the unmoving board to the side of your home. The reason the board is squeaking is that it is nailed in too tightly, and thus other boards will rub against it as they move during periods of temperature change. Use the hacksaw to cut through the nails holding the board to the side of your home. Then, take the hammer and new roofing nails, and hammer in a new nail immediately next to the old nail. Leave a slight gap between the nail head and the siding so that it can flex somewhat. Repeat the above process for the rest of the nails holding that vinyl siding board in place. Once every nail has been replaced, lock the newly fixed board to the board above it by pulling the bottom edge of the above board down over the upper edge of the fixed board, so the ridges fasten into each other. Repeat as needed for any other noisy vinyl siding...

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Comparing Cellulose And Fiberglass Insulation

Posted by on Feb 3, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Comparing Cellulose And Fiberglass Insulation

Cellulose and fiberglass insulation can be found in most homes around the country, and for good reason. Both are efficient methods at preventing temperature fluctuations within your home, helping you save money on your energy bills and maintaining your home’s comfort level during extreme weather. However, despite providing the same function, the distinct material differences between cellulose and fiberglass insulation give each type of insulation a unique set of advantages. Understanding the differences between the two can help you pick the insulation that best fits your home’s needs. Cellulose Insulation Cellulose insulation is the more affordable option of the two, which makes it a better option for homeowners who have a tight budget to maintain. The exact price of cellulose insulation will depend on the quality and manufacturer of the insulation. Cellulose is made out of recycled newspaper and is installed using a blower. This makes cellulose ideal for hard to reach areas, such as attics or crawl spaces as you don’t have to staple or install the insulation by hand. However, the lower price point of cellulose is somewhat mitigated by the fact that it needs to be installed using a blower. Though blowers can be rented from hardware stores, it is a much better idea to hire a professional from a company like Tracy’s Insulation, Inc. to ensure that the insulation is put into place properly, which can raise the installation costs. Furthermore, if cellulose insulation becomes wet due to a leak in the roof, it will clump up, become largely ineffective, and have to be entirely replaced. Fiberglass Insulation Fiberglass insulation has a similar insulative value to cellulose insulation, and comes in batting, or large rolls of insulation that have to be installed by hand. Unlike cellulose, it does not require any special equipment and can be easily installed by hand, both lowering the installation costs and making it much harder to install the insulation improperly. Fiberglass insulation is also able to withstand water exposure much better than cellulose does and will not need to be replaced if it gets wet. However, fiberglass insulation can irritate your skin and eyes, and care must be taken during the installation process to protect yourself. Furthermore, the less expensive installation process is somewhat mitigated by the higher material cost of fiberglass insulation (again, which will depend on the quality and manufacturer in question). Additionally, the installation process of fiberglass insulation is much more labor intensive, as the batting has to be cut to fit the areas it is to be installed in, which takes longer when compared to cellulose’s blower method of...

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Using A Pellet Stove For Supplemental Heating: Frequently Asked Questions

Posted by on Jan 13, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Using A Pellet Stove For Supplemental Heating: Frequently Asked Questions

If you are looking to reduce your fuel bills, installing a pellet stove for supplemental heating can be a good choice. In fact, on days when it is not too cold, you can probably even get by with using just the pellet stove. As you begin the process of choosing a pellet stove and having it installed, you might have the following questions: Where should the pellet stove be placed? Usually, you will want to have the pellet stove installed in the part of the home where you spend the most time. This way, its heat will be most concentrated in this area. Many homeowners choose to have their pellet stoves in their living rooms, though you may wish to have it in your bedroom so you can stay toasty warm at night. Note that the stove must be placed in an area where it can easily be ventilated to the outdoors through a wall or ceiling. It will also need to be near an electrical outlet, since the ignition and air-distributing fans are powered by electricity. What is the best way to obtain and store pellets? Wood pellets are sold by many home improvement and big box stores. They come in pre-packed bags. HVAC professionals who install pellet stoves may also sell them directly. To ensure you do not get caught without pellets, it is best to buy them in large quantities. You can store them in a basement or crawl space inside plastic totes to ensure they don’t absorb moisture. Talk to pellet suppliers in your area and see if any are willing to automatically set aside pellets for you at certain intervals (such as on the first of every month) so you don’t arrive ready to pick them up and then find that they’re sold out. What maintenance do pellet stoves require? A pellet stove does need to be properly cleaned and maintained in order to keep functioning properly. About 1–2 times per week, you’ll need to remove and empty the ash drawer. Every couple of weeks, you will want to turn the stove off and vacuum it out. The manufacturer’s instructions will tell you how often to wipe off the heat exchanger. Additionally, about once per year, you will want to have an HVAC tech out to inspect your pellet stove and replace any parts that are showing wear. They will also check your vent system to ensure no harmful fumes are making their way into your home. Using a pellet stove can take some time to get used to, since you will have to refill the pellet feeder and learn to adjust the air flow to meet your needs. Once you adapt to it, however, you will enjoy having this additional source of renewable heating. For more information, talk to a heating contractor in Essex County,...

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Identify, Fix And Prevent Septic Line Freezing

Posted by on Dec 23, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Identify, Fix And Prevent Septic Line Freezing

Freezing temperatures can wreak a havoc on your home’s water and septic systems. You likely know of the issues that can arise when your water lines freeze but did you know that your septic lines can freeze and cause you even more troubles? If your septic lines have frozen, you need to get them thawed and take precautions to prevent it from happening again. Here, you will learn how to do just that.  Identify the Problem Before you get to work thawing your septic lines, you must confirm that they are frozen. If you have experienced freezing temperatures for a few days and the drains have slowed, chances are, the septic lines are frozen. If left unrepaired, you could soon find septic water backing up into your drains and basement. Problems Caused by Frozen Septic Lines As mentioned above, septic water backing up into your home is a potential problem, but it isn’t the only thing to be concerned with. Think about what happens when waterlines freeze – if they aren’t thawed out quickly, the lines burst and you not only have a big mess to clean up, but you also have to replace those lines. The same thing can happen with your septic lines. If you don’t thaw the ice inside the lines quickly, the ice will continue to expand and eventually cause the lines to burst. Thaw the Septic Lines Start by cutting the power to the septic pumps and don’t run anymore water down the drains in your home. If need be, shut off the water supply to your home to ensure that nobody runs any more water into the septic system. Your best option is to contact a professional septic repair person to thaw the lines quickly. The repair person will start the process by using a small camera that can be sent down your septic lines to pinpoint the exact location of the freeze up. After the ice is located, he or she will then send pressurized steam into the line to thaw the ice rapidly. After the ice is thawed, the camera is sent back into the lines to inspect them for any cracks or damage. Prevent Future Freezes Your septic lines froze because they aren’t buried deep enough under the ground. Insulate the lines better by covering the area with mulch or top soil. Adding several inches of mulch or top soil should do the trick, but if you continue to have problems, the lines may need to be wrapped with heat tape to fix the problem for good. Talk with a local septic professional (such as one from Burleson Septic Cleaning) to learn more about protecting your septic lines from the bitter cold temperatures of...

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Essential Tips For Storing Your Propane During The Winter

Posted by on Dec 7, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Essential Tips For Storing Your Propane During The Winter

Whether you use propane to power your equipment, heat your home or simply keep it in case of an emergency, you probably know that storing it correctly is important. During the winter months, it can be even more important to protect your propane. Luckily, following these tips can help you store it the right way when the temperatures plunge. Use the Right Type of Tank Storage in the right type of propane tank is always important, and it can be particularly important during the winter, when the propane can be at risk of separating. Make sure that you use a tank that is designed to be used to store propane, and inspect it carefully to ensure that there is no rust and no other issues. Invest in a Heater Have you ever thought about investing in a tank heater? Basically, a tank heater is designed to keep your propane tank at a reasonable temperature. It won’t keep it particularly warm, but it will prevent it from getting too cold when the temperatures are at freezing levels. This is an effective way to keep your propane in good shape all winter long. Keep it Full Now is the time to go ahead and fill up all of your propane tanks to the brim. Not only is it a good idea to do so to ensure that you have ample propane to last you through the winter, but it can also help with storage. Basically, if the tanks are completely filled, it helps cut down on the amount of condensation that can form inside the tanks when the temperatures are cold. Since condensation can cause serious problems for propane, this is important. It’s an easy and effective way to prevent potential dilution of your propane all winter long, but it’s a good tip to follow year-round to prevent condensation from ever forming. Add an Additive There are additives on the market — such as the ones that you can purchase from the same company that fills your propane tanks — that you can add to your propane to help keep it stabilized when it’s cold. Add one of these additives to each tank at the start of winter to help prevent separation. As you can see, there are a few simple yet essential tips that you can follow when storing propane for the winter. Follow these tips and check out the site if you want to keep your propane in good...

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Paint Your Chain Link Fence For A Desired Effect

Posted by on Nov 18, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Paint Your Chain Link Fence For A Desired Effect

If you have a chain link fence around your yard and you don’t like the bland coloring of it, you can easily paint it any color you want. Painting the fence the same color as the trim of your house can help tie it in to the house’s style. Painting it the same color as the grass in your yard can make it less noticeable. Once you choose the color you want your fence to be, you can follow the instructions below to paint it yourself. Remove any rust from the fence If you have areas of rust on the fence, you want to remove them by using a wire brush. Spraying a primer on the areas where rust is known to occur will help to prevent it from coming back. Lay something down to protect the grass Take a large piece of plastic or cardboard and lay it on the ground opposite the side of the fence you are going to be painting first. If there is a little bit of wind blowing, take some rocks or bricks and place them on all four corners of the covering so it doesn’t get blown upward and kick dirt onto the fresh paint. Paint the fence Make sure there isn’t a lot of wind when you go to paint the fence. Also, it shouldn’t be a very hot day or the paint can start to dry before it hits the fence. This will cause the paint job to look rough, and the paint can easily chip off. Paint the fence from the top to the bottom, moving in a left to right motion. Once you have painted one entire side, do the same thing for the other side. Allow the paint to dry completely before you allow people to walk around the area where the fence is so you don’t have to worry about dust, grass or leaves getting kicked up on the fence and sticking to the paint. While painting your fence is a great way to get it looking the way you want, there are also other options available to you. If you would like to change the look of your fence in a way that also adds more privacy, you can get rolled wood fencing you roll along the fence and attach to it. There are also slats you can put through the fencing for extra privacy, which come in many styles and colors. Click here for info about chain link fencing...

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3 Foundation Problems And The Repairs That Can Correct The Damage

Posted by on Oct 30, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 3 Foundation Problems And The Repairs That Can Correct The Damage

Damage to the foundation of your home can be caused by different problems. Depending on the type of foundation you have, it may be due to static water pressure or it can be due to things like settling. The repairs that are needed for these problems will differ greatly. Here are some of the repairs that you may need for your foundation: 1. Settling Slab Foundations In Loose Soils Settling slabs can have a lot of problems. This is common in areas with soft soils, such as deltas and swamps near the coast. There are several things that can be done to deal with these problems, such as installing tensioned concrete cables. This method consists of installing cables beneath the foundation and applying tension to them. The cables hold the concrete together as one piece to prevent uneven settling, which can cause cracks in your foundation. There are also pier systems, which can be driven beneath the footings of your foundation. The piers can also be used to jack up areas of your home that have already settled. 2. Cracks In Foundation Walls Of Crawl Space Foundations Crawl space foundations can also have problems. These problems can be due to the settling of the foundation walls beneath your home. They can become cracked as your house settles, which can often happen with brick, stone and concrete block foundations. To repair these problems, the cracks in the walls will need to be fixed and support added to the footings. This can also include installing piers to support areas of weakness in your foundation.  With older homes that have had walls added to them, the walls may need to be temporarily removed and supporting footings added to the walls. This can be common in historic homes with pier systems that predate modern building codes. 3. Static Water Pressure Causing Damage To Basement Foundations Static water pressure is another problem that can cause damage to home foundations. This is common with basement foundations because the walls are below grade levels. This is caused by groundwater that seeps against foundation walls and causes pressure. Eventually, the pressure can cause walls to crack and other structural problems. To fix this, you will need to have the cracks in foundation walls repaired. You may also want to do improvements to the drainage around your home to help prevent this type of foundation problem. These are some of the repairs that you may need to have done for your foundation. If your home is in need of repair to prevent structural problems, contact a foundation repair service to help the problems evaluated and the find the right...

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Need Energy Efficient Windows? Look For The U-Factor

Posted by on Oct 15, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Need Energy Efficient Windows? Look For The U-Factor

Do you need energy efficient replacement windows for your home? There are numerous options available at your local home supply store or window company. The amount of selections can make the shopping process intimidating, but there’s one number in particular that can help you find the most efficient window when comparing between similar models. And that number is called the u-factor. The u-factor measures heat transfer or the rate at which warm air can pass through the window from outside or how much heated air can pass through to the outside. A lower u-factor is better because the rate at which the heat is moving through is also lower. But what constitutes “low” and which window frame and glass materials offer the best u-factors?  Highest U-Factor Materials Wood and vinyl window frames tend to have almost identical u-factors when all other factors, such as window thickness or gas filling, are the same. The range of u-factors for wood and vinyl windows starts at about 0.38 for double-pane glass and goes down to 0.22 for quadruple-pane glass with a krypton gas filler.  Compare these numbers to the aluminum frame range of 0.81 to 0.53, with the lower end being triple-pane glass as the quadruple isn’t available in that material.  Aluminum frames can be improved slightly with a thermal break, which is insulating material inserted directly inside the frame. The break moves the aluminum u-factor range to 0.62 to 0.36 – still not as good as vinyl or wood but decent enough if an aluminum frame is closer to your price range. Best Glass Materials for U-Factor As mentioned above, the type of glass used can help make even the less efficient aluminum more efficient by comparison. There are two primary characteristics to consider with glass: number of panes and type of gas filling. Double panes are one of the most common types of energy efficient windows as there are enough panes to hold in gas and provide adequate efficiency for most homes. Higher numbers of panes also cost more, but the price cold be worth it if you live in an area with drastically cold or hot temperatures. Gas filling is an option that adds an insulating gas in between the glass panes. The gas is harmless and clear but thick enough that the heat attempting to transfer through the window is slowed down even more. Argon and krypton are the gases most commonly used and krypton is more energy efficient, and costlier, than argon. For more information, talk to a professional like Fas Windows and...

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2 Reasons To Hire A Plumber To Help You Remodel Your Bathroom

Posted by on Oct 1, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 2 Reasons To Hire A Plumber To Help You Remodel Your Bathroom

Remodeling your bathroom can be a difficult and time-consuming task, but hiring a plumber can help make the task quite a bit easier. You should consider hiring a plumber to help you with your bathroom remodel to help you avoid issues in the future and reroute your pipes. Avoid Issues In The Future One of the biggest reasons to hire a plumber for your remodeling job is because he or she will be able to complete the task in such a way as to avoid issues in the future. For example, if you use the wrong type of materials for your pipes or the wrong type of seal, you could end up facing a leak or burst pipe a few days, weeks, or months down the line. This could easily end up costing you a lot of money on repairs as those leaking or burst pipes can cause mold to develop, damage your floors, and even short out your wiring.  Reroute Your Pipes Another reason to utilize a plumber when remodeling your bathroom is because he or she can help you reroute the pipes as needed. This is very important if you are completely remodeling your bathroom and need to place your sink, toilet, tub, or shower in a different area of the bathroom. In some cases, you may even need to reroute your pipes even if you are not changing the overall layout of your bathroom. This is because any new fixture may not line up perfectly with your existing pipes.  The reason that a plumber can help with this task is that it does involve a lot of work. Not only will you need to worry about installing new pipes and moving existing ones, but you will also need to tear open your walls and floors to reach them. In that situation, a plumber can take the majority of the work out of your hands so that you can simply sit back and wait for your bathroom to be completed. Rerouting the pipes is also best left to a plumber as he or she can determine the best and safest way to route and install the pipes. For example, the plumber can ensure that any pipes are routed as far from electrical wiring and outlets as possible in order to avoid possibly shorting out the wiring if there is a leak. Speak to a plumber today in order to discuss how he or she can assist with your remodeling project. A plumber can make the whole job quite a bit easier for you by ensuring that the work is done well enough to avoid future issues. In addition, the plumber can reroute the pipes as necessary to accommodate your new bathroom layout or...

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Put More Thought Into Reusing And Recycling Your Construction Junk

Posted by on Sep 14, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Put More Thought Into Reusing And Recycling Your Construction Junk

Renovation and remodeling projects create a lot of junk. Even a small project can produce a lot of debris that needs removal. Larger projects can create mini-landfills all on their own. Contractors in charge of these projects need to learn how to best deal with the junk. It’s no longer okay to dump it anywhere. Instead, you can recycle it, salvage it, or hire someone who can do those things for you. Recycling Your Junk to Give it Life Elsewhere Recycling is simply the right thing to do. This is especially true of many construction materials. Many construction materials, such as wood and metal can be recycled and immediately used again in another project or industry. In addition, it’s highly possible the jurisdiction you’re working in legally requires you to recycle certain items. Or, the municipality makes it illegal to put certain things into a landfill. Throwing away certain things is almost always illegal if those things can possibly contain lead, asbestos, latex paints, or any other hazardous materials. So yes, recycling is important in its own right. But, you also need to make sure that you’re doing it right and in accordance with the local laws. Salvage Your Junk to Make it Not Junk Salvaging construction debris is a way to recycle materials back into your business, or project. Various materials are fully reusable. These materials aren’t just reusable by others, but reusable specifically by you. For example, wood and lumber is definitely reusable for other projects. You can use castoff drywall to plug holes. Sometimes, you can remove entire elements during a renovation to reuse those elements again. For example, instead of tearing down a wall with a window, you can remove that wall and window and reuse them for another project, or even for the same project depending on the nature of the job. Of course, it’s far simpler to tear it down than to surgically remove certain elements for future use. So you will have to weigh what you can get out of materials against the time and effort it takes to extract specific things. But if you can’t use it, always recycle it. Let a Third Party Figure it Out If you want to cut out all the research and guesswork, you should hire a professional junk removal service like The Dump Guy. Many of them already know how to deal with various types of debris. They know where they can sell debris, where they can recycle it, and how to properly dispose of whatever’s...

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