Pages Menu

Maximize Space in Your Custom Built Home

Most recent articles

Which Roofing Material Should You Choose?

Posted by on Aug 30, 2016 in Uncategorized |

Choosing the right roof installation material can be a big task, especially when there are so many new materials on the market to consider. Here are some roofing material suggestions, based on the best qualities they present.  Asphalt Shingles for Cost Asphalt shingles are one of the more affordable roofing materials on the market. Although they may not last as long as some of the more high-tech roofing materials on the market today, you may still get several decades of use out of your asphalt shingles as long as you maintain them properly. And they can give your home or business a traditional look.  Adhered Roofing Systems for Longevity One of the strongest roofing systems available today is the adhered roofing system. These systems combine several synthetic materials in layers to give your roof a weather-proof and durable surface. They can be adhered in several ways; the roof installation contractor may use an adhesive to seal the roofing system onto a concrete base, or they may apply metal fasteners to provide additional bracing for the roof. These systems come with a high upfront installation cost, followed by years of lower maintenance demands and increased longevity. They are also a great choice for buildings in wind-prone areas, where shingles and other weaker roofing materials may blow off the roof and create big repair bills.  Green Roofs for Style Green roofs are becoming a stylistic choice for many businesses and homeowners. The green roof consists of plants installed over the roof cover to deflect heat. They are a great way to protect the home from solar heating, while also making an outward statement to those who pass by.  Solar Roofing for Energy Savings Finally, you might consider not only deflecting solar heat, but harnessing it instead. Some roofing contractors are able to install solar panel systems on the roof to collect the sunlight and use it to power electricity or heating devices. While these systems are still in their infancy, they are still a great option to consider for energy conservation.  Of course, there are several other roofing options to choose from and many factors that can go into your decision. Once you’ve got a material in mind, you can approach a roofing contractor from a company like CJ Scotti Services for advice on your choice. Your contractor can help you factor in many variables to make sure that you get the best roofing material for your home or...

read more

How To Reseal Grout Lines

Posted by on Aug 30, 2016 in Uncategorized |

There are few flooring options that are as elegant and stylish as tile. It is understandable why tile such a popular product in kitchens and bathrooms. Not only is it stylish, it is also very durable. The weakest part of any tile floor is the grout. It is a vulnerable to water damage and cracking if it is not properly sealed. This article explains how you can clean and reseal your grout lines to increase the strength and water resistance of your tile floor. Cleaning the Floor You definitely want to invest in an all-in-one tile and grout sealer. It comes in large jugs that you can basically pour directly onto your floor. That being said, it is quite expensive. You might want to be sparing with it, so you can reuse it down the road. In addition to the sealant, you will also want some scrub brushes and a bunch of lint-free rags. The sealant will also work as a sort of cleaner because it should brighten the grout and restore it to its original color. But you still need to clean any soap scum or mold buildup in your grout lines before you use it. Once you have thoroughly scrubbed off any mold, dirt or soap scum, you want to quickly vacuum and mop your entire floor. Sealing the Floor You should be wearing clothes that you don’t my mind damaging and throwing away afterward because you have to be on your hands and knees. They will surely get soaked in the grout sealant. Have the rags ready so you can immediately spread the sealant around as soon as you pour it onto the ground. It’s important that you spread the sealant all over the grout and tile. Depending on what products you choose, you will need to let it soak into your floor for a few minutes before wiping it away. Then, you will need to repeat the process to her three times. The more coat you apply, the more protection you give your floor. After the final coat, you should stay off your floor for about 24 hours. Then, you will notice a light film that has dried on your floor. Just use a slightly damp sponge to wipe away this film. This is all you really need to do to effectively reseal and clean your grout lines. If you want your floor to look clean and fresh over the years, it is important to repeat this process. For more information, contact Costen Floors Inc or a similar...

read more

3 Mistakes to Avoid When Installing Drywall

Posted by on Aug 10, 2016 in Uncategorized |

In an effort to save on remodeling expenses, some homeowners are taking on the task of installing their own drywall. Unfortunately, putting up drywall is more complex than it looks. If the drywall is not hung correctly, problems can occur. To help you stay on the right track with the installation, here are some of the most commonly made mistakes you need to avoid.   Underestimating Drywall Needed While people are installing drywall, it is not uncommon for them to make mistakes. Mistakes can eat at your supply of drywall and leave you without the necessary supplies to finish your project. Other problems, such as weather damage, can also impact your ability to finish your drywalling project as scheduled.   To avoid delays, it is important that you buy more drywall than you estimate you need. If something does transpire, you will still have the materials needed to finish without having to make multiple trips to a home-improvement store. The leftover drywall can be used for other projects or donated to charities.   Using Long Screws The screws that are used to secure the drywall are important. Some homeowners believe that using longer screws helps to ensure the drywall is properly secured. In actuality, longer screws could cause more damage.   Longer screws can potentially damage plumbing lines and wiring within your walls. To avoid damage, look for an 1 1/4-inch screws if you are using 1/2-inch drywall panels. Use 1 3/8-inch screws for 5/8-inch panels.  Failing to Leave a Gap One of the common misconceptions about drywall is that all of the pieces need to fit tightly together. The thought is that this provides a smoother look. Unfortunately, installing the pieces together tightly can cause damage. When the pieces are crammed in tightly together, the edges can start to crumble. If you have to remove a piece later to make a repair, removing the drywall can be more difficult without the gap in place.   You can avoid all of these issues by leaving a small gap between the drywall pieces. Remember, tape and joint compound can be used to fill in those spaces. You can still get a smooth look without worrying about damaging the drywall.  There are other mistakes that can be made when installing drywall. Mistakes can prove costly and result in a need for a professional to repair them. To avoid additional costs, you could also try working with a professional residential drywall installer from the...

read more

What The CFM? Understanding Air Compressor Terminology

Posted by on Feb 29, 2016 in Uncategorized |

Pneumatic tools offer several advantages over electric tools. For example, a pneumatic tool will be more compact, less expensive, and longer lasting. They also have adjustable torque, variable speeds, and don’t have any parts that contain toxins harmful to the environment. Their chief disadvantage is that they have to be connected to an air compressor via an air hose. While this can make them less portable than their battery-powered counterparts, their advantages should be enough to warrant their use. If you are considering the purchase of a pneumatic tool, you need to understand air compressor terminology in order to buy a compressor that is compatible with the tool you have in mind.  PSI Not every pneumatic tool will require the same amount of pressure. When you purchase a tool, you should look at the PSI, or pounds per square inch, rating, then buy a compressor that generates the required psi to run your tool. If you plan to run several tools with the same compressor, you should look into a machine that will allow you to adjust the psi output to accommodate the use of different tools.  CFM Certain tools will require more airflow than others. Airflow is measured in cubic feet per minute. A nail gun only requires short bursts of air to drive a nail. On the other hand, a sander will require a continuous stream of air. While it might not matter if you have a continuous flow of air to run a nail gun, a steady stream of air will ensure the optimal operation for sanders and other CFM-dependent tools. For these tools, a rotary screw compressor will provide the best flow of air.  Horsepower If you are trying to determine the power of a tool, the most important considerations will be the psi and cfm ratings of your compressor. The term horsepower refers to the motor that runs the compressor. A motor with higher horsepower will be able to compress a greater volume of air more quickly. Thus, if you need to run several tools off of the same machine, then you will want to look with a machine with a lot of horsepower.  These are the basic terms that you need to understand in order to purchase an air compressor. Do-it-yourselfers and construction contractors will not typically have to dig any deeper than this in order to buy a compressor for use with pneumatic tools. However, if you do have questions, you should be able to talk to a sales representative at the store where you purchase your compressor to get more clarification. To learn more, speak with a business like Kruge-Air...

read more

Solar Panels For Your Roof

Posted by on Feb 29, 2016 in Uncategorized |

If it’s been a few decades since you had a new roof, you probably need to replace it to avoid possible expensive repair problems. You can make your new roof actively work for you instead of just protecting you from the elements. Before you install a new roof, consider adding solar panels to your system. Having a roof that is a significant source of energy provides a number of advantages for you.  Energy Advantages Once you install solar roof panels, you can expect to save around $20,000 on energy in a twenty-year period. If you live in a climate that is sunny year long, that savings amount can increase dramatically. In addition to these financial benefits, you will experience true energy independence. When you are providing most of your own energy, you are not at the mercy of the utility companies. After all, the sunlight belongs to no one. Your energy costs will be less affected by politics or natural disasters.  Home Value In addition to making your lifestyle easier and more affordable, replacing your roof with a solar panel system adds value to your home. Solar energy is a powerful asset when you are trying to sell your residence. Many buyers are specifically looking for energy efficient houses and, in particular, homes with solar power. Experts say that homes with these panels sell 20% faster than homes without them. They also bring in 17% more money during a sale.  Net Metering In some areas, you can sell the excess energy your system produces back to an energy provider. Your home will usually be connected to a provider so that it can draw electricity to supplement the energy your solar roofing system provides. When you produce more energy than you need, it goes back into the system, and your meter actually runs backward. Not only do you save money, you can occasionally earn money with a solar panel roofing system. Your new roof does not have to be just another set of shingles or tiles. You can take the opportunity to turn your roof into an efficient energy-producing system that will offer you long-term savings on your electricity bills. Doing so will turn your roof from a passive protective layer on your home to an active participant in making your life more comfortable and affordable. Before you decide on a new roof, check with a roof installation company to find the best materials for your...

read more

What Are The Biggest Roofing Problem Areas?

Posted by on Feb 5, 2016 in Uncategorized |

Proper maintenance and repairs are necessary for your roof, regardless of the type of roofing system you have. However, until you have a major problem, it is difficult to determine when you need certain repairs. It helps to know about the bigger problem area and risks so you can inspect these areas on a regular basis. Damage to the Shingles or Tiles The main area of your roof is actually one of the biggest problem areas to be aware of. This is because asphalt shingles, metal panels, and various types of roofing tiles can experience different types of damage. From shingles that are torn off the roof to cracked tiles, this puts the underneath membrane at risk of damage, which can then cause a leak inside your attic or the top floor of your home. You should be inspecting the roofing materials on a routine basis to look for any signs of wear or damage. Don’t take damage lightly, as it could be a sign of something more serious looming. Gutters and Downspouts The gutters and downspouts of your roofing system might also give you multiple problems. The main problem with gutters is that they can fill up with leaves, twigs, dirt, and debris, which then creates a blockage. When water ends up on the roof, it should drip down to the gutter, where it glides down the gutter and down the downspouts. This keeps the water away from your home and from soaking into your roof, causing damage. However, if the gutters are not cleaned regularly, the water sits in the gutter, creating sludge. This extra weight can cause damage to the gutters themselves, which can then cause excess pressure on the downspouts. Just cleaning your gutters and downspouts will prevent this problem. The Roofing Membrane The membrane on your roof is the layer beneath the shingles, panels, or tiles. This is also a common area of trouble with your roof and can often be more severe than having cracked tiles or shingles. If there is damage to the membrane, it often leads to a leak inside your home. If you have any missing roofing materials, look down to the revealing membrane layer. Look at its overall condition for signs of wear or damage, such as splits, cracks, or blisters. If you notice any of these forms of damage, you need to contact a roofer to have it repaired or replaced. For more information, contact a local roofing repair or supply company like American Building & Roofing...

read more

Top 4 Asphalt Paving Tips

Posted by on Jan 14, 2016 in Uncategorized |

Paving an asphalt driveway can be tricky. The best thing you can do is hire a professional. If you want to pave your driveway yourself to save money, there are certain tips and tricks you need to keep in mind. Here are four tips for asphalt paving: 1. Use slopes You don’t want puddles all over your driveway when it rains. While paving your driveway, make sure the asphalt slopes down from the middle to the edges. You don’t need a sharp incline, just a slight one. Build drainage ditches on either side of the driveway at the edges so the rainwater will trickle down into the storm drains on the street. Unless you manage to pave an extremely level driveway, don’t block the edges with crowns. 2. Support your driveway Just like your house, your driveway needs a good, solid foundation. You should install the proper base for your driveway. There are several factors to take into account. Here is a guideline: Is your soil made from clay? Your base needs to be eight inches thick. Is your soil made from sand? The base needs to be four inches thick. Keep in mind thicker is not always better. A base that is too thick can cause the asphalt to crack or split. Allow the base to settle for a minimum of a few days, ideally for one week. 3. Fill in asphalt quickly The asphalt needs to be added and smoothed quickly. Asphalt dries in only about an hour or two. Plan every aspect of paving. Know where to start and where to stop. You also need to know how much asphalt to add. A solid, long-lasting driveway is typically about two inches thick. Once you know where to pave and how much asphalt is needed, take the weather into account. If it’s raining or the humidity is high, the asphalt will take longer to dry and compact which will make it weaker. After you apply the asphalt to the base, have a compactor ready to go before the asphalt dries. 4. Let the asphalt breathe Just because the asphalt is dry that doesn’t mean you can use your driveway quite yet. You need to let the asphalt settle before you can start parking your car. The asphalt needs one to two days of settling before you can use it. If you start using it too soon, the asphalt can get grooves and indentations or even begin to crack. After two days, apply a seal to your driveway to protect it from the elements and give it a longer life. These are four tips you should always keep in mind while paving your driveway. Visit http://www.phend-brown.com for more...

read more

Facing Conservation Requirements Due To Drought? How Can You Painlessly Reduce Your Home’s Water Consumption?

Posted by on Dec 27, 2015 in Uncategorized |

Many city and county governments in areas hard-hit by recent droughts have instituted water restrictions in an attempt to preserve the existing water supply and minimize wear and tear on pumps, pipes, and other plumbing components. If you’re currently utilizing more than the new restrictions permit, you’ll be faced with potential fines if you don’t quickly make your home more water-efficient. Read on for several ways to help permanently reduce your family’s water consumption without impacting your lifestyle. Invest in a tankless water heater  Tankless or “on demand” water heaters are ideal for those looking to conserve water and electricity. Rather than keeping gallons of water constantly heated to a high temperature, a tankless water heater heats water as it’s needed, providing enough hot water to take a bath, do laundry, or wash dishes without interruption. Because your water heater represents one of the biggest energy drains (making up about 18 percent of your home’s total utility costs), minimizing the amount of work your water heater will need to do to heat your home’s water will reduce your energy consumption. By combining a tankless water heater with water-conserving showerheads and faucets, you’ll be able to enjoy the same long showers and hot laundry cycles as before while remaining well within your new water budget. Begin recycling “grey water”  Even after reducing the amount of fresh water you use by changing out your showerheads and water heater, you can take further steps to minimize consumption by recycling the “grey water” you do use. This includes water from bathing, washing your hands, and doing laundry. By utilizing biodegradable soap that won’t harm plants, you can re-use this grey water to water a garden, flush toilets, or even wash your car. Recycling grey water can be as simple as placing a bucket in the shower with you, but if you’re planning a permanent reduction in water usage, you may want to invest in a professionally-plumbed system that will effortlessly route and filter your grey water for home use.  Xeriscape your lawn If you don’t see a way to keep your lawn from dying without going over your water allowance, you may want to consider replacing your grass with stone, mulch, pavers, or succulents in a process known as xeriscaping. A xeriscaped lawn can be designed to coordinate with your home’s colors and style, and should be much lower-maintenance than your former lawn. For areas that aren’t expected to see much rain in the foreseeable future, a xeriscaped lawn may be a wise investment when it comes to your home’s curb appeal. For more information, contact a plumbing company such as First Class Plumbing of Florida Inc....

read more

Planning A Major Landscaping Improvement For Your Yard? Things You Should Recycle

Posted by on Dec 9, 2015 in Uncategorized |

If you are planning to have a major landscaping improvement for your yard, you should consider the things you can recycle instead of throwing them away. Many things you can reuse yourself, or you can send them to a recycling center. Metal Edging If you have a lot of flower gardens, or a very large one, and used metal as an edging around them, you can recycle the metal, and even make some money. Non-ferrous metals, such as stainless steel, bronze, brass, aluminum, and copper are generally worth more. Ferrous metals, such as iron and steel, may not be as valuable. Scrap yards will accept both type of metals, however. You can recycle your metal even if you do not have a lot of it, as scrap yards will take any quantity you have. Your payout, however, is determined by how much the metal weighs. Cardboard If you ordered any landscaping equipment, flowers, etc., they likely came to you in cardboard boxes. Take any cardboard you have to a local recycling center. You don’t have to worry about taking any labels off the boxes, unless you do not want someone to see your name and address. If the cardboard gets wet, the recycling center will not take it. You also need to break down all boxes and flatten them before you take them to the recycling center. Concrete Patio If you are tearing out your concrete patio slab, a concrete recycling center can remove it for you. They will then crush the concrete, and then reuse it as an aggregate for structural layers when laying concrete for other purposes, such as driveways. It is easy to recycle concrete, as there are generally no restrictions. Most recycling centers will come to your home to pick up the concrete for you. You can also reuse the concrete yourself in many ways. Use broken pieces to make a concrete pathway from your driveway to another area of your yard. If you want to make this permanent, you can set the concrete pieces in cement, and then put grouting between them. You could even make a small retaining wall if you have a lot of concrete. Break it into square-shaped blocks, and then wedge the pieces together until your retaining wall is the height you want it to be. You can place cement between each level if you want to make the wall more secure. Wood from Deck If you are knocking down a deck to replace it with a new one, or you just want to get rid of it altogether, you need to decide what you want to do with the wood. One thing you can do is to call your recycling center, and ask them for suggestions on where you can donate the wood. You can also reuse the wood by decorate your yard. You could make flower boxes for your windows, bird houses, a work bench, garden trellises, and many other things. You could use the wood inside your home by making a rustic picture frame or shelving. You should not burn decking wood in a fireplace. The wood was likely treated, stained, sealed, or painted. These things can contain chemicals that can make the wood highly flammable, and can also damage your chimney. Talk with your landscape contractor,...

read more

How Firm A Foundation: What Do You Want Your House To Stand On?

Posted by on Nov 19, 2015 in Uncategorized |

When you decide it’s time to build a new house, there are a lot of things that you need to consider. One of the most important things is what kind of foundation your house is going to have. There are all kinds of reasons that you need to have a strong foundation, including the fact that a strong foundation keeps your house nice and square, and keeps your roof in good shape. But, there are different kinds of foundations that you could choose.  Frost-Protected Foundation When the weather gets cold, the ground freezes up. How far down it freezes depends on where you are located and what the average winter temperature in your area is. That frost isn’t very nice to your foundation. It can actually cause your parts of your foundation to move and settle, which can lead to cracks. Those cracks can let water in, cause walls to settle, and even cause roof damage. A frost-protected foundation consists of two parts. One is the concrete slab that your house will be built on. But underneath that slab, there’s a series of poured concrete piers that are dug down below the average level of the frost line. These piers support the slab and help tie it in place. They will minimize the amount of damage that the frost could do to your foundation. The concrete slab may also be poured using an insulated concrete, which can also help to protect it from the frost.  Concrete Slab Foundation The concrete slab foundation is just that, a nice flat slab of concrete that can support the weight of the walls and your house. This is probably the most common kind of foundation that is used in houses.  Wood Foundation You might not realize it, but you could choose to go with a wood foundation if you really want to. The wood isn’t just any wood, it’s specially treated wood. The treatments keep the wood from rotting. It also makes it less prone to insects getting into it. It’s also lighter than a concrete foundation if you are building somewhere that may have issues with weight.  If you want to make sure that your house is going to be around for a good long time, you need to plan from the very start and make sure that you have a good foundation. Talk to the contractor who is building your house and see what foundation is right for...

read more

Landscape Design Ideas To Complete Your New Home Build

Posted by on Nov 3, 2015 in Uncategorized |

When you build a new home, you often spend so much of your time designing and building your home that you forget you have a lot full of dirt to design around your home as well. Landscape design doesn’t have to be intricate, but you should have some idea of how you want your land to look so you can start planting trees, flowers, and shrubbery to give your home personality. Here are some landscaping design ideas you can consider to make your new home build fully complete. Asymmetrical tree design To frame your new home, you want to place trees at the edge of your yard. Trees help break up the square, hard lines of a house and add a sense of whimsy. They also add depth to a small yard and structure to an expansive landscape. In short, you will want to have trees in your front yard to help give your new home personality. Instead of choosing the same type of trees to place at the edges of your property, choose a variety of decorative and shade-style trees to create a pleasing asymmetrical design. Trees you can plant together include: Japanese Cherry Blossom Red Maple Honey Locust Quaking Aspen Curbing Curbing is a great way to give your property a streamlined look. Place curbing along the edges of your front and back yard, around mature trees (it makes mowing around them cleaner), and along sidewalks and your driveway. You’d be surprised how a simple hardscape addition can make your property look much more defined. Retaining walls with a garden If you have a long front yard and want to give it some dimension, talk to your contractor about adding a retaining wall. A retaining wall is built into a part of your yard and reinforced with dirt to give it the effect of resting on a hill. Retaining walls are designed with decorative brick, and usually have trees and shrubbery placed behind them when they are completed. You can also add lawn lighting along the bottom of your retaining wall to add a glamorous appeal to your landscape at night. Great garden ideas for your retaining wall include: Willow trees with snapdragon flower beds Wild roses Morning glory vines Talk to your contractor about adding a few visually-appealing plants and trees to your new lawn. They can recommend a landscaper to do the work for you or install shrubbery themselves to help make your new yard as beautiful as your home. Visit a site like http://cottonwoodland.com for more...

read more
Page 1 of 512345