Category: Home Improvement

Basic Steps in Installing Drain Pipes

  • Use a hack saw to cut pipes.
  • Rub emery cloth around the pipe’s cut ends. This will eliminate debris and burrs from the surface of the pipe. The plastic shavings and residue from the pipe ends and the fitting’s interior must be wiped using a clean cloth.
  • Unscrew the pipe-welding cap of the cement canister. The brush attached to the cap’s underside should be dipped into the cement. Apply a cement coating to the pipe’s exterior and the interior of the corresponding fitting of the pipe.
  • Insert the fitting into the pipe’s end. The fitting must be twisted in a quarter turn then it should be held in place for about 30 seconds. The joint must be allowed to cure for 5 minutes before the fitting’s opposite side will be glued.
  • Cut cast iron drainpipe. The cutting should be based on the desired length using a chop saw or chain cutting tool that has a metal-cutting blade.
  • Rub the cast iron pipe’s end. You must do this with the use of an emery cloth or metal file so that burrs will be removed. A clean cloth should be used to wipe the pipe’s end to eliminate residue and shavings.
  • Slip a drain connector over the cast iron pipe’s end. The connector should be shimmied until it will be completely insert over the end of the pipe. You need to tighten the pipe clamp of the connector by turning the screw of the clamp using a slotted screwdriver.
  • Insert another cast iron pipe into the drain connector’s other side. The pipe must be slid into the connector making sure that it will butt against the center divider of the connector.
  • The clamp should be tightened around the pipe. This can be done by turning the clamp screw of the connector.

Common Garage Door Problems

Faulty door opener

This problem is common in automatic doors with electric openers. Here the door may develop issues resulting to failure of opening or closing. The main cause of the problem is the failure of the drive motor or the electrical circuit to control the remote control or the safety sensors.

When this problem develops, you only need to hire the services of a specialist with plenty of experience in rectifying the problem.

Bent doors

It’s common to have garage doors bent. The cause for this is cars rolling into the doors. The doors also tend to bend when you try closing them with something in the way. Steel and aluminum doors are the most vulnerable in bending.

To correct the problem you only need to straighten it. If you can’t do it on your own, you should seek the services of a professional. In some cases you may find that your door is excessively bent. In such a case, you may be required to replace the panels and slats and the door will look as good as new.

Sticking on tracks

Many garage doors have rollers that run on tracks thus guiding the door as it opens and closes. Due to one reason or another, the roller may get jammed thus preventing the door from moving easily.

The solution to this problem is lubrication of the rollers. In some cases the rollers may have worn off. Here you need to replace the rollers and you will have a perfectly working door.

Failed mechanism

Garage doors are usually balanced by springs or weights. As time moves on, springs tend to break thus resulting to lose of tension. Here you need to hire the services of a professional to replace the springs and restore the lost tension.

In some cases, you may find that your door is counterbalanced by a system of cables and weights. Here you need to hire a professional with ample experience in repairing the cables.

Advantages of Granite Worktops

Granite is an igneous rock that contains quartz, feldspar and quartz. It is used for buildings, the design of kitchen and bathroom countertops and for sculptures and memorials.

When you have seen Granite used in kitchens and bathrooms, the definition is used for general igneous rocks with crystals and may not be granite in the purest term. This does not mean that you should be wary of choosing granite. It will still have the same advantages as pure granite.

The main advantage of choosing granite as the material of your kitchen or bathroom countertops is that it does not depreciate in value. It will be worth the same in ten years time as it was when you first had it installed. This means it will add to the value of your home, when and if you choose to sell it. It really is an investment in your home, when you choose this material.

Granite is very easy to clean. You only have to use warm water and a mild detergent, so you don’t have to be spending your money on fancy cleaning materials. You could even use a kitchen towel or some specified kitchen wipes with the soap already mixed in.

Keeping in line with the cleanliness theme, granite is very sanitary. You won’t have to worry about any type of contamination from bacteria because it will not fester and grow on this surface. You still have to clean it, obviously, especially if you are chopping different meats, but it is a lot more sanitary than any other material. This is why some professional kitchens have granite-chopping boards instead of wood.

One of the best advantages to granite is that it won’t be damaged by heat. If you are cooking with a pot and then you need to grab something else so you put the pot down directly on the granite surface, nothing will happen. It can take the heat because it is formed using heat. So, when the teenager tries to cook and burns the pots, they won’t damage the surface.

Now, the area that most of you are going to be worried about is the general look of your kitchen. If you use granite, you will get a contemporary, almost spacey look to your kitchen. The crystals that are in the counter will glow when light hits it and it will look amazing.

With the design of the surface, each one is one of a kind. Even though other people might use the same type of granite for their own kitchens and bathrooms, each one is one of a kind. No two pieces have the same design so you don’t have to worry about walking into someone else’s kitchen and seeing the same as your own.

Build the Ultimate Home Desk

Try looking for nice dilapidated houses. By that I man houses that would be nice if they were not dilapidated. Old style architecture, mostly. They have a lot of corbels. Or you can go to some town fair or estate auction, where they sell everything very very cheap. You will definitely find one.

After you get the pair of corbels you might want to do a little refurbishing on them. And by that I mean a proper sanding and painting. And an eventual professional cleaning in order to remove wood parasites, if any.

Next you’ll need a glass top. The length of the glass top is yours to decide. That will be the actual length of your desk top, so choose your own value. The width of the glass top should be the actual width of the corbels. Because the corbels will be attached to the wall and thus function as the desk’s feet, the glass top will be secure on top of them. So the width of the corbel should match the exact width of the glass top.

I suggest going for a thick glass top. Not only it’s safer for you but it’s also looking better. the corbels are sturdy thick pieces of work, so using a thin glass top on them will look very flimsy and out of proportion.

Next comes the last part: the actual fitting of the two. For securing the corbels to the wall I suggest using some corner brackets. You can fix them in four spots each, two at the top and two at the bottom, which will give a tight and most of all a secure fit. If you’re not a good hand with drilling you’d better ask a friend who is to do it. I actually did. Next put the glass top and secure it in place with anything. Duct tape will do. The gently drill four holes in it. Two holes along the left margin, two along the right, and use a screwdriver to fix it in place on top of the corbels.

Advantages Of Artificial Turfs

Environment friendly

Fleas, insects and other pests are attracted to green lawns, and so it becomes necessary to spray insecticides and pesticides regularly. With artificial lawns this is not required. Also there would be no need of chemical fertilizers which are used to enhance the growth of natural grass. Mowers and automatic trimmers which cause noise and air pollution will not have to be used.

Saves water

Artificial turfs play a very important role in water conversation. If you live in a dry climate which requires you to water your lawn daily, artificial lawns are the best option for you. Installation of artificial turf at a typical home can conserve approximately 22,000 gallons of water per year which can save up to 75% of your monthly water bill.


Artificial turfs are long lasting and can endure any type of weather. Water clogging will not be a problem in case of rains as most of the artificial turfs available now allow the water to drain through. The average durability of artificial grass is 8 years and so you won’t have to worry about replanting the grass periodically.

Ideal for sports

Apart from looking just like real grass, artificial grass is very versatile. It can be used for a wide range of sporting arenas like soccer and hockey pitches, golf courses and tennis courts. Natural grass can only be played on for an average of 250 hours per season whereas artificial grass can be played on at all times. All artificial turfs need is regular brushing to keep the leaves and mud out and straighten flattened bristles. With the right maintenance and use of appropriate footwear artificial turfs can last for many years.

Ensure For A Hassle-Free Bathroom Renovation

Because of the importance of this part of the home, it is among the most rebuilt and redesigned by homeowners. Although renovations can cost a good amount of money, it can increase the value of the property when done correctly. Therefore, every homeowner should make it a point that the rebuilding will be done right to avoid a costly mistake which they have to bear for a long time.

A homeowner should know at the very beginning if there really is a need to renovate immediately or if it can be done after a few more years. Also, if the renovation is pushed through, the owner should be certain of the things he wants to accomplish with regards to appearance and functionality. And the biggest thing to consider is how much a homeowner is willing to spend for the renovation. It is so easy to desire the ideas seen on magazines and advertisements but it is a different matter when it comes to implementing the designs on a limited budget or with structural problems in the house.

This is the reason why homeowners should not be hasty in choosing contractor. There are various firms that offer bathroom renovation services that you can find on the internet. You could also ask recommendations from friends and relatives.

Choosing a reliable contractor will ensure you come up with a finished project that is of good quality and done within your budget. Likewise, working with a reliable firm will assure that the project will be completed at the agreed upon deadline which will prevent additional expenses.

You will know a potential candidate even during your initial calls because a good contractor will be able to tell you if they can perform the renovation base on the scope you specify and the budget you allocated. The renovation specialist will be able to answer all your questions during your initial meetings.

Most renovations specialists today use CAD software in generating their designs making it easier to incorporate your ideas while checking your current bathroom setup. They can easily add and scrap design elements to come with a design that will suit your needs.

A good rebuilder is transparent with regards to the estimated budget and the duration it will take to finish the job, which means that he knows how to deliver on what he has promised.

Tackle Mold Removal

Be aware of the potential health risks. This substance can lead to skin irritation, difficulty breathing, a stuffy nose, and eye irritation. If you have asthma, allergies, or other breathing conditions, you may be more sensitive and it could present serious risks for you. Individuals with suppressed immune systems, including people with HIV infection and people undergoing chemotherapy for cancer treatment, are at greater risk of developing complications from exposure to this substance. They may experience infections in their lungs.

You may be able to spot this substance by sight. If your walls or ceiling are discolored with patches of growths or even simply with water damage, it’s probably safe to assume that you’re going to have a problem. In addition, you may be able to recognize it by a musty, earthy stench.

After your home suffers water damage, the first thing you’ll want to do is aerate the space by opening the doors and windows. You can use fans to dry out your carpet, furniture, and belongings. If you’re unable to dry some of your items, you’ll want to remove them from your home immediately. While you’re waiting for your insurance claim to go through, you may want to find a place to store your items outside your home.

Meanwhile, before you bring in a contractor, you can take care of some basic mold removal duties yourself by cleaning items and surfaces with detergent and water. This will prevent the growth from returning. Still, it’s much safer to leave the mold removal job in the hands of a qualified contractor.

To find a suitable contractor, you can contact the Better Business Bureau and ask for a list of highly rated specialists in your area. They will be able to tell you whether any given contractor receives a high number of customer complaints, and they also keep track of how companies handle such disputes. Once you’ve narrowed it down to a few contractors, ask them for estimates. They should be able to provide you with copies of the standards they follow for remediation. If a contractor refuses to show you the guidelines he or she follows, that throws up a big red flag. Your contractor should also detail his or her experience, training, and certifications for you.

Remediation is not a regulated profession in all states. You can contact your local health representative to find out whether your contractor needs a license to perform mold removal work. If so, ask to see the license and ensure that your contractor is in good standing with that regulatory agency.

About Types Garage Door Insulation

The simplest method is more like a home made approach wherein one buys the basic insulation material such as reflective foil insulation rolls, cuts them up to match the shapes of the garage door panels, and keeps them in place by means of an adhesive, usually a double sided tape. This approach reduces the cost drastically, but has some downsides to it. As the most basic materials are used, the thermal boundary that is created may not be as effective as the one that is created with high grade materials. The aesthetics that come automatically with a professional installation will also be lacking. Hence, it is better to consider professional help before starting work on your garage door insulation.

Insulating garage doors with basic materials such as reflective insulation foils that are based on heavy duty polyethylene foam don’t work effectively as there is always a certain degree of thermal exchange that is allowed by such materials, due to their lower R value.

The other material that is popularly used for insulating garage doors is molded polystyrene. This material has a relatively higher R value and enables prevention of thermal heat loss in cold regions. It also minimizes thermal exchange drastically as compared to the lower cost materials. This material can also be installed without professional help if the garage doors are of a standard size. There are kits that are available in the market which are designed specifically to match standard door sizes. However, since the polystyrene material is installed in the form of molded panels, if the garage doors are non standard, then self installation will not be a workable option. Moreover, the panels that are part of the kits usually don’t offer much variety to the customer to choose from.

Irrespective of what size the garages are, polystyrene panels installed professionally appear to be the best option. When the door sizes are not standard, professionals prepare molded polystyrene panels that are ofcustom sizes which fit the panels in the doors perfectly. These custom panels can be made to suit the customer’s preferences, in terms of color and appearance as well. Many of these custom-made polystyrene panels offer a variety of choices in the laminated vinyl finish that is presented on the exterior.

The custom built polystyrene panels offer many advantages over other basic materials as well as the readily available kits. For example, they are engineered in such a way as to easily fit into most pre-existing sectional garages.

They are also lightweight and ensure that the motor that opens the garage door doesn’t have to lift an extra load of insulation material each time.

Buying Automated Sprinkler Systems

Considering that there are so many different brands of automated sprinkler systems available in the market these days, you need to ensure that you select the right one. Be sure to keep the following factors in mind when you are buying sprinkler systems for your garden:

  • The system should be easy to use and you shouldn’t have to pull a hose over your yard, which will be a huge problem if the yard is very large. Do not install a system that requires you to have a lot of technical knowhow.
  • It should have a very sophisticated controller system which allows you to program the run times of the sprinkler system. This will enable you to water each part of your garden at the right time and in the required quantity. If you can get special sensors included in the system then the watering schedule can easily be adjusted according to the weather conditions. The simplest sensors available prevent watering from happening when it rains.
  • A large grassy area requires a watering system that has good rotor sprinklers that enable the optimum amount of water to be used.

Be sure to check whether your local water supplier offers you a rebate on your water bills, especially if you have installed a special sensor that restricts the amount of water being used.

It is best to get a highly reputed automated sprinkler systems company to do the installation on your property. The company should also offer to customize a sprinkler system for your garden, based upon its area and the types of plants that it contains. Further, it should also have a good reputation for doing timely repairs as and when they are necessary. Once you have the right system in place, your plants will be taken care of without requiring too much effort from you.

Control the Spreading of Fungus Gnats

The immediate effects are retarded growth, discoloration and negative intake of nourishment. Affected plants wither if not remedied right away. The ideal solution for reducing the growth of fungus gnats is to dry the growing medium after watering especially for the top portion. This lessens the risk of egg-laying due to extreme moisture. Remove decomposed plant matter like roots and bulbs since these supply sources of food for the larvae. Another choice for plant growers is to buy insecticides. Apply the insecticides on the surface of the growing medium because this is normally the origin of adult fungus gnats.

Counteract the multiplication of gnats and dry up the growing medium after watering. This decreases the hazard of egg-laying because of too much moisture. Get rid of decomposed plant matter because this supplies a source of food for the maggots. Another option is to apply chemicals on the surface of the growing medium. Again, this is for the most part the origin of fully developed fungus gnats.

Adult flies can also be observed clinging to the leaves. These gnats have a preference for moist soil which is abundant with organic and compost substances. Fungus gnats chew up the roots causing the entire plant to fall off. In case you discover gnats going to the exterior part of the soil, remove the flies and replace the infected soil with fresh and bug-free potting mixture.

You can use biological insecticide and repeat application every five days until the gnats are eradicated. At the same time, make sure to handle the outbreak of fungus gnats. Close all doors and windows properly at all times. Allow the soil surface to dry up completely between watering schedules. Your house plant container should have an effective drainage system. Get rid of any standing water that builds up in the container beneath the plant pot.