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Tinley Park, IL

(708)845-7922

Residential and Commercial plumbers and plumbing contractors available in Orland Park, Tinley Park, Oak Lawn, Palos Heights, Midlothian, Oak Forest, Homer Glen, Mokena, Frankfort, and the surrounding Chicago South Suburbs. 24 Hour Emergency plumbers.

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Kevin Szabo Jr Plumbing Blog

Kevin Szabo Jr Plumbing is Tinley Park, Orland Park, Oak Forest, Midlothian, Orland Hill, Homer Glen, Mokena, Frankfort, Crestwood, Palos Heights, Oak Lawn, local plumber. Read our blog for advice, tips, a good laugh, and basic home improvement.

**We are moving our old blog to our new and improved website. Too see all our posts visit kevinszabojrplumbing.blogspot.com

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5 Effective Home Improvement Tips To Grab The Attention of Your Guests or Buyers

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5 Effective Home Improvements Tips To Grab The Attention of Your Guests or Buyers

Almost every person cares about interior design. Even those who say they don’t would much rather spend time in a pleasantly decorated space, than in a home that looks drab and boring. Of course, having a beautiful home isn’t a must, but it can definitely help, especially if you ever decide to sell it. First impressions are important, so here are some decor tips on how to increase the attention and awe of your prospective buyers and visitors alike:

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Make your home well-lit

If you want to attract attention to your home, the first step would be to make your home well-lit, as it’ll seem bigger and more beautiful. You can do it by installing bigger windows, or simply removing window blinds, and instead, you can add breezy and light curtains, that will let enough light in, but also maintain your privacy. Another option would be strategically placing one or two mirrors, as they reflect the light, and make the home look brighter. This one is especially useful if you don’t have enough windows or access to natural sunlight. Also, it would be helpful to paint the walls in a bright, yet still neutral colour, and get furniture that isn’t heavy or too dark.

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Get rid of the unnecessary junk

Maybe you have a lot of stuff that means to you on a deep, personal level. Old teenage magazines, your old stamp collection, books that you may want to reread once more...it’s all fine, but remember that guests nor buyers want to wade through your old things while trying to get in. Therefore, it’s crucial to clean and declutter everything that seems unneeded. If you don’t want to throw everything out, at least try to put things into separate storage boxes and place them somewhere where they won’t catch anyone’s attention. Also, you can donate them to your local church, school or charity, or give them to friends and relatives to keep them for you. Additionally, renting a special storage room locker is also a great choice, as your belongings will be safely stored without causing unnecessary clutter.

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Keep it clean

Once you’ve gotten rid of all the junk, it’s time to clean your home. First, it’s necessary to clean the windows, kitchen counters and floors. Also, it’s important to keep the furniture clean, and if you can’t do that, at least use a sofa cover so you’ll be able to hide all the spots and stains that couldn’t be taken off. Next, you should definitely make sure that your floors, carpets and rugs are all clean and without a grain of dust. And finally, if you really don’t have time to clean by yourself, feel free to ask someone to help you, or hire a professional cleaning team who’ll do it for you.

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Make your home look appealing

Having a home that is clean is the first step, but if you really want your guests or prospective buyers to fall in love with your home, you need to beautify it as well. Now, the issue is that sometimes your taste and the taste of the overall buyers might be different and if you want to be certain that everything will be attractive you can opt for a property styling service, where an expert will make sure that everything in your home, from furniture to potted plants, is aesthetically balanced and eye-pleasing. Hiring a property stylist isn’t too expensive, and it has multiple benefits such as saving you time and giving your home the makeover it deserves.

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Take care of the exterior, too

Once your interior looks all dolled up, it’s time to move on to the exterior. Taking care of your curb is a must, as this is literally the first thing everyone sees when they come for a visit. You can change the front door, or if you like it, just repaint it and change the doorknob. Make sure that your front lawn is always mowed and plant more various flowers for a more interesting appeal. Also, it’s recommended to repaint the facade, so your house will look fresh and welcoming to the guests.

Making your home look attractive doesn’t have to be complicated or expensive task, but with a bit of effort, you can definitely make it come to life and look fabulous. If you follow these tips, you’ll be amazed by the difference, just remember to be friendly and welcoming to your buyers/guests, so they’ll want to come back.

Guest Contributor, Mike Johnston

About the author: Mike Johnston is a lifestyle blogger and DIY enthusiast from Sydney. He is a regular writer at Smooth Decorator, but his articles can also be found on numerous other interior design, family-friendly, real estate and green living blogs as well. Mike’s goal is to create insightful and compelling content that will help readers navigate through these vast and ever-changing fields..

 

 

5 Home Improvements to Boost Water Efficiency

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5 Home Improvements to Boost Water Efficiency

It's all too easy to forget that freshwater is a finite resource. With the convenience of public utilities, water conservation isn't a top concern in the United States. Even so, it's one of the most pressing issues of the 21st century, especially when you consider the EPA's findings.

The average family can waste as much as 180 gallons of water each week from household leaks. These leaks account for approximately 900 billion gallons of water waste across the nation each year. As context, that's equivalent to the annual household water usage of 11 million homes.

Clearly, the subject of water conservation demands attention. If the average family is losing that much from leaks alone, how extensive is the problem? More than that, what can you do to alleviate pressure on the country's water resources and participate in conservation efforts?

Here are five home improvements that can increase water efficiency.

1. Rainwater Collection Systems

The strategic placement of special barrels on your property can capture rainwater and reduce your water usage. Many towns and cities distribute these barrels to residents during annual sales, so check if your area participates. You can also purchase them from online retailers and home and garden supply stores.

However, it's essential to note that rainwater can pick up pollutants as it runs over the surface of your roof. If you're thinking about using rain barrel water on edible plantings, you should research the subject in greater detail and take the proper precautions. It's an essential preliminary measure.

2. High-Efficiency Sprinklers

Many sprinkler systems consume far more water than necessary to maintain your lawn and garden. When the water pressure is too high, the system will mist the air instead of providing a proper flow to soak the ground. As the mist evaporates, your plants receive less nourishment and your water efficiency plummets.

Fortunately, a high-efficiency sprinkler system is a simple improvement with both economic and environmental benefits. Certain systems with pressure-regulating stem heads can save up to 45,000 gallons of water per year. That's the equivalent of flushing your toilet 63 times each day, every day for one year.

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3. Low-Flow Bathroom Fixtures

According to the EPA, the average person uses at least 20% less water with efficient fixtures and appliances. Since showers and toilets are the two biggest sources of consumption, your bathroom is one of the best places to start. A variety of low-flow products are available today.

More specifically, low-flow faucets, shower heads and toilets can make a dramatic difference in your water usage. When searching for products, remember that a toilet should use less than 1.6 gallons of water per flush, and a shower head should have a flow rate under 2.5 gallons per minute.

4. Automatic Shower Timers

On the subject of bathroom renovations, shower timers are effective in regulating a homeowner's water usage. You simply install the device in your shower, and it monitors your consumption. If you're taking too long, it alerts you and automatically shuts the water off to let you know it's time to get out.

Of course, not everyone likes the idea of a shower timer. When you come back from an exhausting day at work, you might want to take a long shower before you call it a night. While this is fair, a timer will let you know when enough is enough, even when you're reluctant to admit it.

5. Upgraded Dishwashers

Your dishwasher makes your life easier, taking care of dirty plates and silverware without the time-consuming task of hand-washing. While this isn't necessarily bad for water consumption, the model of your dishwater definitely matters. If you have an older dishwasher, it can use as much as 10 gallons per cycle.

An investment in a newer dishwasher can reduce your consumption by almost half. Modern machines require an average of 5.8 gallons per cycle, which make them an excellent option for water efficiency. That said, you don't always have to upgrade your appliance if you clean and repair your current washer.

Start Planning Your Changes Today

As you assess the water efficiency in your home, consider some of the suggestions above. Any of the five improvements on this list can help you minimize your impact and make a big difference to our planet.

Holly Welles is a home improvement writer who believes anyone can make the most of their space. You can find more of her work on her blog, The Estate Update.

Guest Contributor, Holly Welles

An Insight Into Different Types Of Vinyl Flooring

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An Insight into Different Types of Vinyl Flooring

As much as we all simply adore the old and charming hardwood floor, stone and ceramic, we can’t ignore the fact that these materials are very expensive. Quite often they aren’t very comfortable, require high maintenance and a lot of our energy.

Vinyl flooring has become popular again for the simple fact that it’s very cost-effective, durable, resistant to slips, street grit, high heels and messy spills. It’s not surprising then that it’s finding its way back into many homes and here are the basics you need to know.

Vinyl sheet anatomy

Vinyl sheets are created layer by layer which allows the manufacturers to produce a great variety of floors in terms of thickness, colour, pattern and texture. Typically, there are six layers. The base at the bottom supports all layers and is followed by fibreglass that keeps the sheet flat. Then, there's the cushion layer for texture and bounce, the pattern layer that gives the floor its colour and appearance, the wear layer to safeguard the pattern and finally, the top coat that adds sheen and provides protection.

An average vinyl flooring price in Australia that includes installation ranges from $26 per square metre to $35 per square metre. The same goes for warranties – it can run from five years to several decades, depending on your maintenance.  

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Types of vinyl floors

Vinyl flooring has changed a lot over the past decade and the current vinyl flooring trends in Sydney will make you forget everything you thought you once believed about it. It’s an excellent choice for commercial application due to its high resilience, durability, versatility and attractive looks.

Sheets flooring is installed very fast and rarely has any visible seams. It’s combined with various materials to improve its quality: PVC for toughness,foam gel for comfort, texture, and insulation, fibreglass for stability, and urethane for durability. Due to its lightweight, it can be loosely laid over a subfloor or glued down for more stability and permanence.

Tiles and planks are slightly harder and stiffer than sheets. During installation, they should be glued down, or joined at the edges and allowed to "float" over the subfloor.

Composition tiles are produced with a mix of vinyl and ground limestone and are quite tough so they’re often used in schools and other institutions. These tiles have to be glued down and since there’s no grout, it needs to be done perfectly.

Finally, woven vinyl are actually strands of fibreglass that are encapsulated in vinyl and woven into soft, textured sheets. They can be glued down or laid loosely. Woven vinyl is naturally springy, stain resistant and easy to clean. It’s also very durable, so even if left outdoors, it won’t deteriorate.

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Vinyl styles

Contemporary vinyl flooring offers a large versatility in style so there’s something for everyone and therefore, can easily fit with the rest of the home décor. Styles range from textured seagrass strands, tiles with grout lines mimicking ceramic tiles, limestone, multicolour stripes that give it a woven appearance, quarried slate with colour and texture of stone, wood block and wood planks, metallics shine, and simple flooring in vibrant colours like sky blue.

Health benefits and versatility

Owing to its versatility, vinyl flooring is suitable for kitchens, hallways, basements, bathrooms, utility rooms and kids' playrooms. There are multiple ways to install vinyl which can be done as a DIY project or left to the pros as the best end results depend on the floor preparation.

One of the major selling points of vinyl floors is their low maintenance, which is an obvious health benefit. In addition, some vinyl floors are produced with antimicrobial coatings or embedded wear layers with particles of silver which is a potent germ killer. To make sure your indoor air quality remains at a high level, choose floor-certified coverings and adhesives which abide by the industry’s highest standards.

Knowing the basics and perks of high-quality vinyl, you’ll have no trouble picking what is best for your home.

Guest Contributor, Lillian Connors

An IntroductionTo Renters Insurance Coverage

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An Introduction to Renters Insurance Coverage

Renters insurance is an extremely affordable way for tenants to keep their belongings safe, with the average premium totaling less than $150 per year. Yet under 40% of all renters are insured, in large part because of a lack of awareness among tenants about the benefits of renters insurance.

It’s impossible to predict when an emergency situation will strike, and the best way to prepare for the unexpected is to stay insured. Understanding the benefits and coverage of a renters insurance policy will allow you to make an informed decision about acquiring coverage.

How Does Renters Insurance Work?

Since relatively few people purchase renters insurance, there are some common misunderstandings regarding what exactly is covered under a typical policy. Some tenants assume that they’re automatically protected under their landlord’s insurance, but the truth is that you need your own policy to be covered in case your possessions are damaged or stolen.

Many tenants wonder if renters insurance covers water damage, bedbugs, and other unexpected occurrences. While there are some important differences in the fine print of many policies, a typical renters insurance plan provides coverage up to a certain limit in case of weather events such as rain, wind, fire, and hail. That said, more extreme conditions like earthquakes and floods will generally require additional coverage, so it’s important to make sure you’re protected if you live in a vulnerable region.

Your policy will also pay for temporary relocation in case your apartment is no longer habitable, a responsibility that may or may not be picked up by your landlord. The price of a few coffees each month is well worth the peace of mind that comes from knowing you’ll be kept on your feet no matter what happens.

Exceptions to Renters Insurance Coverage

While renters insurance provides critical protection for a number of costly situations, there are some things that most policies won’t cover. The first two examples are earthquakes and flooding, which many insurance companies offer as a separate policy. 

Under a standard renters insurance policy, you won’t be compensated for any damage done to extremely valuable or rare items such as jewelry and fine art. The most common insurance limit is $100,000, but you’ll likely still need to purchase additional insurance if you want these items covered.

Other common situations tenants often find themselves in, like losing a phone or having a pet cause damage, are not covered under renters insurance. Your protection also won’t apply to anyone else living in the apartment unless they purchase their own coverage.

Renters insurance is a low-cost, reliable method of keeping your belongings safe and ensuring you’ll have a place to stay even in a worst-case scenario. For less than a dollar a day, you can cover all the possessions in your apartment from loss or damage resulting from anything from fire to theft.

Guest Contributor, Armand Levitz

Couple Finds Thousands While Renovating Their Home

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If you ever needed an excuse to remodel your home, here’s one: couple found thousands of dollars in the floorboards while renovating a home. They have been remodeling houses for 13 years. Their company, Accessible Homes, remodels homes for people with disabilities. I couldn’t have happened to a better company.

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“We looked through it,” Rasmussen said of finding the money while renovating an accessible home for a nonprofit Thursday. “It’s $20s and $50s, I’d say $30,000. Maybe more.”

“When we opened up the floor there’s a heat duct that was run under the floor,” Rasmussen said. “And so someone previously must have gone into the utility room and thrown the money up on top of that duct. Pretty crazy.”

“It’s hard to process that amount of cash just laying around, and no one knew existed,” he added. “Well, someone knew, but forgot about.”

The house is owned by Bethesda, a non for profit that provides housing and services for people developmental disabilities. The money is going to help their organization make a difference in people’s lives.

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source: http://www.fox32chicago.com/news/couple-finds-thousands-in-cash-under-the-floorboards-during-home-renovation

7 Ways To Prepare Your Plumbing For Fall

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7 Ways To Prepare Your Plumbing For Fall

The coming of Fall means a change in temperature, shedding of leaves and shorter days ahead. Have you considered checking the one area that makes up most of your routine?

Getting your house ready for Fall involves having your plumbing system serviced. However, it’s not required to replace the entire system if you happen to notice any irregularities in your water flow or pipe condition. You’ll just need a local plumber to attend to and resolve your plumbing concerns as the new season arrives.

Whether you live in cold temperate areas or not, it’s best to plan ahead and schedule a thorough inspection to keep your plumbing in tip-top condition. Doing so also prevents significant losses spent for large repairs and replacement.

Why You Need a Plumbing Maintenance Service

Plumbing is one of the most used and functional systems in both houses and buildings but is often neglected when it comes to accomplishing regular upkeep. It’s undoubtedly true that your sinks, toilets and water heaters heavily rely on drain pipes and other plumbing fixtures.

Devoting enough time and attention for inspection won’t only minimize your expenses but also offer greater convenience to your family and future guests. Here are effective ways to prepare your plumbing for the Fall season and avoid costly repairs:

1. Check for Potential Leaks

Dripping faucets are an example of common leaks that occur in one’s home. It’s safe to check around the tubs, sinks and showers to see any signs of leaks. That way, you can easily determine the unusual increase in your water bill and resolve the problem right away. According to Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), homeowners can save around 10 percent on water bills upon fixing the leaks.

It’s also good to have your plumbing fixtures regularly cleaned to detect any issues that affect their durability and performance. For instance, kitchen sinks that have small gaps or cracks can produce leaks inside the cabinet. Leaving it unnoticed can damage not only the countertops but also the pipes.

2. Clean Your Sump Pump

A sump pump is a device commonly found in the basement and is used to prevent excess water flow from flooding the area. It’s important to check its condition before the fall season to ensure that it’s free from debris or any form of dirt build-up.

You may remove the lid for inspection and pour water into it to test if it operates efficiently. It’s also good to insulate the device to help it thrive in extreme temperatures.

3. Drain Your Water Heater

Rust and sediments have the potential to form inside the water heater and settle at the bottom of the tank over the months. It’s best to conduct preventive measures to help you combat the chilly weather when winter comes.

Flushing off puddles of water is one way to keep your water heater in good condition. Before you inspect the system, you need to shut off the power supply first for your safety. Adjusting the water temperature up to 120 degrees F is necessary to save you money but be careful not to go overboard to prevent the system from scalding.

Your water heater can easily deteriorate without proper inspection. A professional plumber can tell if the tank needs a major repair or replacement.

4. Unclog the Pipes

Grease, dust and food particles are a common cause of blocked pipes. Falling leaves, twigs and sludge also contribute to clogging the pipeline especially if placed outdoors. Pipe tubes may acquire significant damage over time if left unchecked.

It’s good to know how you can maintain your drainage systems to reduce the risk of potential clogs. Failing to remove them may cause unwanted pipe bursts which can affect not only your finances but also your daily activities.

You may also want to clean the gutters to allow free flow of water within the pipe system. This involves removing the debris and accumulated dirt from the gutters.

5. Wrap and Insulate Your Pipes

When water starts to freeze, it expands and causes your pipes to burst out - and it can happen overnight. Covering both your indoor and outdoor pipes with insulation can prevent them from reaching their breaking point.

By doing a comprehensive inspection, you can easily locate tiny holes and cracks within the pipes. Sealing them using an adhesive can help protect your pipes while avoiding structural damage around your property.

You can also check for exposed pipes and buy an additional insulation if you must. Asking for professional assistance helps to guarantee a successful installation without worrying about the outcome.

6. Turn Off Your Outdoor Plumbing

Some homeowners tend to focus more on indoor plumbing that they forget about the outdoor faucets and garden hoses. It’s important to disconnect these fixtures including the sprinklers from the main supply to keep them from breaking. Not turning off the shut-off valve can leave them freezing out when the winter breeze hits hard.

It’s best to shut off the water supply and allow your irrigation systems to operate until excess fluid runs out. If it’s not possible to turn it off, insulating them using a heat tape can be an alternative solution.

7. Get Help from Your Local Plumber

Fixing toilet flappers or dripping faucets may sound easy, but for other jobs that require comprehensive procedures to complete the task, it’s always safe and convenient to have a professional plumber to assist you.

Make sure to prepare and follow a plumbing checklist to help you prepare for the fall season and minimize household expenses in the future. Conducting a routine check is also necessary to help reduce water consumption and safeguard your property from significant damage.

 Guest Contributor, Sofia Hann

This is the Story of How I Ended Up Setting My Peeps on Fire

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My Hate for Marshmallow Peeps

Once a upon a time, in a far far land called Tinley Park, a local Plumber's son threw his Easter Marshmallow Peeps on the floor after deciding he didn't want them anymore. The stickiness of the peeps completely aggravated him. They taste like crap, they don't do anything, and his son doesn't even want to play with them, "What does one do with a Peep?" asked the Plumber. After short research the Plumber realized that Peeps aren't good for anything, he decided to get rid of them.

He first tried to throw them down the sink:

peeps in sink

Since the sink drain was too small, he went for something bigger, the tub. "Surely, the tub drain will work" said, the Plumber. 

peeps in tub

The tubs drain failed the Peeps big time. The toilet always works for everything people flush down. "We get calls for kids toys all the time. Toys, keys, phones, clothing objects, chicken bones, and gold fish. Marshmallow Peeps should be a piece of cake." said the Plumber. Without hesitating the Plumber threw the Peeps down the toilet. 

peeps in toilet

What do I have to do to get these Peeps to just disappear? "I'm guessing they are ducks or bird like things, if I set them free they will go away" thought the Plumber. Frustrated with the Peeps, the Plumber packed the Peeps bags and took them for a little stroll down to the pond. 

peeps in pond

The Plumber threw the Peeps in the pond and wished them well. "Have a nice life" said the Plumber, as he walked away. 

perched peeps

The Plumber happily went back to working, he had already wasted enough time trying to get rid of the Peeps, but was glad he finally set them where they belonged. Some time later, the Plumber walked past the pond and noticed the Peeps weren't in the water. They were perched above the pond, soaking in all the sun. He didn't understand, "How could the Peeps emerge from the water?" asked the Plumber.  

peeps in firepit

The Plumber couldn't take it anymore. He was angry. He didn't want anything to do with these Peeps. The Plumber threw the Peeps in the fire pit and set it on fire. 

peeps on fire

"Yesss" yelled the Plumber. Finally, the Peeps gave up and melted away. The Plumber should have felt defeat over his victory, but all he felt was remorse. "What did the Peeps ever do to me?" said the Plumber. "It's not their fault they taste bad, are sticky, and plain useless". The Plumber ran to the store to purchase a box of Marshmallow Peeps, but they were sold out. Heartbroken, the Plumber promised to never take advantage of a Peep again. 

 

**No one was hurt during the process of this article, besides a Plumbers heart**