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Home Remodeling

The Different Factors Involved in Log Home Maintenance

There are various factors involved in the proper log home maintenance. You can compare it to the maintenance of a conventional house with only some minor differences. If you have a log cabin or log house then you have to take into consideration the proper care and upkeep of the log materials. Check the walls, ceilings and the floors regularly and figure out if you need to have them refinished or repaired. There may be some minor redecoration that you need to do.
Cleaning of the Log Home
Just as in normal houses, you need to clean your log home regularly. Usually, the walls of conventional houses are flat so they don’t need much cleaning. You can just wipe them with a damp cloth. When it comes to the cleaning of the walls of log houses, you need to be very meticulous since there are crevices and nooks that need to be cleaned thoroughly. The wall panels which are made of logs have protruding structures. The nooks normally collect dusts over time that’s why they should be wiped properly.
Routine Check of the Whole House
You should check each part of the house on a regular basis. The ceilings are particularly tedious to check but you have to examine them so that you will know if there are damages or cracks on the wood material. The walls are easier to check since you can reach them easily but you also have to be keen on the wall treatment because the logs may be infested by insects. Check the sealant as well as the stain of the wood.
Repair of the Major and Minor Defects
You can have the major and minor defects in the logs repaired as soon as possible. During construction stage, you should make sure that you choose the right kind of logs. Check that they are already dried by natural or artificial methods. For the log home maintenance, you should hire someone to repair the cracks in the logs. It’s important that you have them fixed immediately so that the situation won’t get worse.
Refinishing of the Log Materials
The proper log home maintenance comprises of routine cleaning, repairs and refinishing of the log material. You need to re-stain the log material if the stain finish has already faded. It’s necessary to do so in order for the log material to appear polished. It will also look brand new with new wood stains.
Adding New Decorations
Since you are doing your routine maintenance, you might as well upgrade the design of your log home. You can add simple decoration to the walls since the log material is already very intricate. You can also add alcoves or nooks in the walls so that there will be space for shelves and display cabinets. You can redecorate your log home when the seasons change so that it’ll have a new look.
When you do the proper log home maintenance, make sure you bear in mind these essential factors so that you will have a cozy and comfortable home.…

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Basement Remodeling

Home Maintenance and Handyman Tips for Living by the Sea

It’s a dream life for many, a seaside property, the sun and the sand. However it is a very hard environment for our houses. I own a property maintenance business in a coastal area of NSW Australia, which has given me a great deal of experience with these problems. Hopefully this article will help you identify problems that can occur living by the sea, and give you some guidance in how to prevent unnecessary damage occurring.
Gutters
I see a large number of rusted gutters and downpipes in this area. Rust is a common problem because of the high level of salt that end up on your house. However there are ways to increase the life of your gutters and downpipes. The easiest is to ensure the you clean or have your gutters cleaned at least twice a year. I recommend that gutters are cleaned at the end of Autumn, after the leaves have stopped falling and before the rain in winter, and again at the end of spring and before the fire danger period of summer. Clean gutters will allow the water to drain away and take with it any salt residue. Blocked gutters result in a build up of a salty silt that sits in your gutter and begins to corrode at the paint and metal.
Along with keeping your gutters clean, is making sure they still fall correctly. This means that there are no low points in you gutter where the water will pool and not drain away freely. In heavy rain you may notice your gutters overflowing in a particular area, this is an indication of a possible low spot or blockage. If you gutters appear crooked or uneven to the eye, then you should get them checked and repaired if necessary.
The next points relate to your choice of gutters and up keep. Ensure that you paint your gutters. Not only will this improve the look of your house, it will help to preserve the gutters. If having new gutters installed make sure you do your research. At $50+ per meter of gutter installed you want to make sure that you are buying quality gutters that come with a warranty.
Screen doors, fly screens and security doors
Just like gutters, screen doors, fly screens and security doors are susceptible to rust. But you have bought marine grade stainless steel? While this is a great product, stainless steel does rust. Make sure from time to time you wash your security or flyscreen doors. When replacing flyscreens opt for a nylon based mesh. Although it is not as tough as a wire based product it will have a longer life in a coastal environment
Locks
I have been asked to deal with a number of sticky locks. Coastal environments are very humid. Along with salt residue, a build up of dust inside the lock turns to a virtual glue when combine with the moisture from the air. Generally this is something I only see in old locks or locks in beach front streets. Never be tempted to spray WD40, degreaser or an oil based lubricant into the lock. Although this may make the lock work in the short term, it will attract more dirt and dust and the lock will seize again. Often the lock just needs a small amount of graphite powder, a carbon based dry lubricant. This will usually get things moving again. If necessary the barrel may need to be removed and be cleaned before the lock returns to normal
Shade sails, umbrellas and fabric awnings
Shade sails, umbrellas and fabric awnings have become a popular and practical architectural feature of many houses. The shade they provide while allowing light and air movement are fantastic. They are also relatively cheap, available in a never ending array of shapes, sizes and colours, and can be taken down or wound in for the cooler months. Wind is the number one enemy of these shade systems. As a licensed shade systems installer, I am aware of the massive forces that they catch. Shade sails are called sails for a reason, and I have seen many a fascia and guttering pulled away, windows broken, sails torn and other damage from a combination of incorrectly installed or incorrectly tensioned shade sails. Unfortunately it isn’t as simple as stringing the sail up between a couple of post and screwing it to your house. It is an achievable DIY project but I would emphasise the importance to study up and talk to people about installing them. They may be relatively inexpensive, but they can cause a lot of expensive damage. In relation to umbrellas and awnings – DON’T FORGET TO WIND THEM IN OR TAKE THEM DOWN – they are easily damaged and often repairing them is very difficult and expensive.…

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Renovation House

Indispensable Home Maintenance

For some people, their house is a dream that they have worked hard for, for a long time. Thus improving the appearance of that property is always on top of their minds. They value the property as their most priced possession and it is expected that maintenance of this home always is a priority. There are some individuals who do not give much importance to repairs. It is vital that they give them some time because without the proper care for your home can result to damages that can sometimes be impossible to fix or can cost a huge sum of money to rectify. Proper home maintenance such as carpentry, masonry, interior renovation, kitchen work and quality paint jobs improve the beauty of your house. It can even add value over a period of time since well maintained houses always ask a better price than an average similar sized house in the same place.
As far home repair services are concerned, there are professional offices who take charge of these things. They are equipped to carry out from the tiniest nail dreall to the largest masonry job or paint works. They can do these things with accuracy and even have high standards that they stick on to. Such services are essential because they affect the aesthetic feature of your house to visitors, as well as the market value of your property.
Other basic and important home maintenance tasks consist of carpentry, masonry jobs, flooring and painting of both external and internal areas. Carpentry would cover new designs for your home furniture which can beautify your house and make it more attractive. These have to be performed at least once every seven to ten years as furniture designs get obsolete after some time. If you are planning to sell your house, this is a worthwhile idea. Apart from that, new designs get you a better price for your house.
Flooring is another feature that usually requires regular maintenance. Chipping of tiles, staining or even big cracks are typically seen in every home after a period of time. These need to be fixed as soon as possible because delays can worsen these defects and lead to several issues such as structural complications. These can cost more and sometimes can even be hazardous. Regular masonry jobs include patching of walls and ceilings, taking care of minor cracks on walls or joints and even covering small openings that may have seen on the ceiling or in comfort rooms. These are generally the areas that are affected because of humidity and other related issues.
These maintenance jobs are a lot better done by experts in this field, since they are qualified and more knowledgeable to do them. Make sure that they use the best strategies and skilled manpower to do the job and if possible, take a liability insurance to cover any problems that may arise later on.…

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Room Additions

Winterize Your House to Lower Your Insurance Risks and Maintenance Costs!

Winter is quickly approaching. I recently wrote an article that gave several tips about how to minimize insurance risks when driving in cold weather. But what can we do if we just want to stay snug in our own homes?

As you might expect, there are several things that can be done to make homes more comfortable and safe during the winter. An added benefit is that by winterizing your house and planning for cold weather, you will also reduce your risk of having to file an insurance claim that may (or may not) be covered by your homeowner insurance.

If we start from the inside of the house and work our way out, here are a few tips to consider. If you believe that your heating bill is too high, have a heating contractor check the amount of insulation in the home’s attic and walls. There are also services that can take an infrared picture of your home to see where heat is escaping.

Having a house properly insulated can offer immediate savings on heating bills. An inspection of insulation can also reveal other maintenance issues (such as damage by animals) that are much less expensive to correct if remedied early.

Check doors and windows. Trying to raise the temperature outside of your home by using your furnace is not a good idea. If you have cracks around doors or windows that can be sealed by caulking or weatherstripping, then heat from your home is escaping through those cracks.

Inspect all water pipes. Take immediate steps to prevent pipes that may be exposed to the cold from freezing. Although water damage caused from a frozen ruptured pipe may be covered by homeowner’s insurance, the inconvenience and cost of repairing a flooded basement when it’s 20 degrees below zero is something all homeowners would like to avoid.

Space heaters used in the home have a much higher hazard risk than central heat.

Clean and seal air ducts. Furnace air ducts that are coated with dust or have gaps are inefficient and will prevent your furnace from operating at maximum efficiency.

Furnace maintenance. Have your furnace checked every few years (or anytime you think that there may be a problem) by a heating professional. If you have an old furnace, consider replacing it with a newer, more efficient model. Replace your furnace filter. Consider replacing an old thermostat with a newer programmable thermostat. The potential savings could easily be more that the cost.

Test your smoke alarms to make sure they are working. Many fire deaths in the US are the result of smoke inhalation. Unfortunately, if the smoke alarms don’t go off when they should, there is a high probability that by the time the fire department arrives, it may be too late; not only for the house, but for the occupants.

Chimneys and wood stoves. If you use a wood stove, have your chimney swept. Just a small buildup of creosote in your chimney can greatly increase the chances of a chimney fire. Make sure that your chimney is not obstructed and that unwanted pests have not made your chimney their home.

Roof and gutters. An ice dam can occur when water freezes on a roof or in gutters. This usually causes shingles to be pushed up. Then water gets under the shingles and eventually finds its way into the house.

Reduce your risk by cleaning all gutters to remove leaves that may have accumulated in the fall. Recall past winters. If you have noticed icicles or a buildup of ice on your roof, consider those to be warning signs. Have a qualified contractor assess the situation and/or consider installation of roof ice melt cables

Shut off (and if necessary), drain water to outside faucets.

Drain, coil, and store all hoses used outside during warm weather.

Control ice and snow on walks and steps. As a homeowner, you are responsible for the safety of your family and your guests. Slips and falls are a major risk during the winter. Remove snow as soon as possible and place deicer on areas subject to foot traffic.

Vacations. When on vacation, have a family member or someone you trust stop by your home to check on it every so often. Reduce the heat in the home (probably to the mid 50 degree range). Make a list of emergency numbers that can be called in the event of some type of unexpected occurrence. Stop delivery of items to the house that could indicate you are not at home.

Remember to winterize all gas home maintenance accessories that you own. Run the accessory (lawn tractor, leaf blower, lawn mower, chain saw, etc.) until it is out of gas or add an appropriate amount of gas stabilizer to the tank. In cold weather, gas can …

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Renovation Costs

Home Maintenance Tips During the Winter Cold

If you can remember one word this winter, you need to remember the word water. If you don’t keep the water away from your house you could find yourself dealing with water damage and water damage means home repairs. I don’t need to tell you what home repairs translate into, but it isn’t good news for your financial portfolio.
Basic home maintenance tips during the winter will include keeping the area around your home clean. If it’s possible to remove any snow that accumulates next to your home, I would advise that you do so.
If you can keep the water at least 5 feet away from your house, there’s a good chance that you won’t have any soil erosion or problems with your structural foundation in the future. So if you could keep as much snow, ice and rainwater as possible away from your house, this would be a good thing.
Let’s not forget about our water supply pipes either. If you’re planning on going on a long vacation or leaving your home unoccupied for a few days, you should turn off the main water supply valve and drain the system. There’s nothing worse than coming home after your wonderful vacation to the tropics, only to find out that a water supply pipe had broken.
What about the roof? You should try to keep as much snow as possible off of the roof, but don’t forget that you shouldn’t climb on top of your roof, because it might not be safe. Try to remove as much snow as possible from the ground using long poles and snow rakes.
If you can remember these simple home maintenance tips, there’s a good chance that you will survive the winter without spending a lot of money on home repairs. Just remember that frozen water melts and melted water can create home water damage. Keep your roof and areas around your home clean during the winter.…

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Renovation Costs

Home Maintenance Projects for Fall

As the sunshiny days of summer give way to the bright gold and reds of fall, it is easy to enjoy the beautiful transition, lay back and relax. But you see, putting off essential fall home maintenance projects until the chilly winter months can not only cause a lot of difficulties but can also be costly as well. Yes, your New York home is among the greatest investments you can have in a lifetime and not taking care of it will soon take its toll, leaving you and your family to live with insufficient comfort and functionality which are important to make everyday living of quality. To avoid all the headaches brought by the inconveniences and costs, here are home maintenance projects for fall that you should not miss whether you are in Manhattan, Long Island, Queens, Brooklyn and Staten Island.

Home Inspection

The best possible start to your set of home improvement projects for fall is a thorough home inspection. Though you can do this yourself, it is advised to hire a competent contractor or other qualified professionals to handle the task more efficiently for you. The expertise and tools that they have will allow for a more detailed and accurate assessment of the property and all areas of your house. Doing this step can initially will cost some, but the results will prove to be more than your dollars’ worth. By knowing which areas need repair and other improvements, you are saved from the costs and troubles that a snowballed home damage can bring.

Clean Up

Fall means that leaves, and a whole lot of them, will be scattered all over from the roof to the grounds. These seemingly harmless piles of dead leaves and branches can be enough to do a lot of damage and causing you to end up with a broken bank. In your fall home maintenance projects focus on gutters, downspouts, and other water draining channels. Free these areas up from dead leaves and if possible, gutter guards and other such devices should be installed. Clogging of gutters can lead to standing water. When winter comes and freezing of these waters occur, not only will your gutters be damaged but the condition and efficiency of the basement, walls, foundation, and crawl spaces can be affected. Removing dead leaves and branches on your lawn is a great way to preventing snowmolds.

Roof Care

One of the foremost areas that should be the focus of your fall home maintenance projects is the most exposed to all damaging elements – natural and not, and this is your roof. Repair of any damage while the temperature is negative and piles of snow covers the expanse can be very difficult, and even dangerous. This makes the evaluation and maintenance of this part of the house done on fall, a very ideal and sound action to take. Some of the damage signs that you should be wary of include:

missing or damaged shingles

gaps along flashes, joints where the siding and roof meets with flues and vents

damp, moldy spots

broken mortar around the chimney especially at caps joints, and washes.…

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Remodeling Contractors

Home Maintenance Tips – Effective Garage Organization

Garage is nice to look at if you have maintained it clean and tidy. Normally, this area of the house is left unorganized and messy. Majority of homeowners would simply pile up all the things and the sides and they leave it as it is. This is their way of cleaning up the mess. But this is really not a helpful thing to do and you are not maximizing the space available of your garage. There are still a lot of stuffs that you can store inside if you have just observed the effective organization of your garage. In order for you to fully maximize the area you have, you have to learn the technique of organizing things without too much effort needed.
A great way to start your garage clean up is to set your objectives. What do you wish to achieve at the end of this activity? Do you want to transfer your laundry area in your garage? Do you want to put on your old things inside? Regardless of your goals, you need to aim for realistic ones so you will see the results once you finish it.
Then you can now sort your things on what you want to store in that place. Make sure that those things that you will put inside are already of no use to you. In this way, you will not keep on disarranging them if you need it. You can try to lessen the items that you find very old or useless to you. Give them to the charity or completely get rid of them. They normally use up big space and thus you will only have limited storage for other stuffs that are more useful to you. Another suggestion would be selling them so you can generate extra income.
Get big boxes and containers to store these things. Of course, one of your obvious goals is to make it look as organized as possible. So make use of these containers to achieve your objective. Everything would still be useless if you simply pile up on one side. They can still be cluttered once someone would bump into them.
During cold seasons, water can get inside your garage. Thus, it is best to put all the items high enough the ground so you can protect them from possible water damage. It would cost you more expense if you found out that some of your belongings are damaged because of water. So be very careful in your arrangement. You also have to consider the safety of these things.
If you are willing to shell out more funds on this activity, investing on shelves and storage systems that are of good quality is really helpful. This will make your organization a lot easier and faster. Besides, the result would look better than just those used boxes and containers. And you can quickly find something in case you would need them later on. This is definitely a smart move for you.
Organizing your garage can be simple and fun if you know how to do it systematically. Sometimes a complex problem is really not that hard if you know the right approach for it. And fixing a cluttered garage is one good example for that.…