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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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Simple Ways to Make Your Home More Secure

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Simple Ways to Make Your Home More Secure

No matter where you live and how safe you think you are, the chances are you probably aren’t as safe as you feel. There are lots of threats that could put your family and your home in danger, and fighting these is the only way to stay protected. From burglars to weather disasters, making your home more secure is a must, so here are a couple of simple ways to do that.

Focus on the front doors

This is the main point of entry for potential burglars, which is why your front doors need to be as protected and safe as possible. Securing them is a must, and some of the ways to do that include installing a deadbolt, adding a strike plate, or, if you’re a fan of smart technology, upgrading to smart locks that perform better than your traditional locks. Hire someone to inspect your front doors and determine how secure they really are, and, if necessary, replace them as soon as you can.

Check the windows

The windows are another easy way for burglars to enter your home, and this is quite a big problem for people living in old houses with outdated windows. These do basically nothing for your safety, which is why installing new windows is needed. Alternatively, you can reinforce the glass with some security film, add window bars, and install sensors that alert you if something bad is happening.

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Change the locks

This is another amazing way to make sure nobody enters your home without you knowing it. Changing the locks on all your doors – from the front doors to the garage doors – and giving the key only to the members of your family is crucial. If you have kids, teach them how to be responsible and never lose their key, but don’t worry if that happens anyway. You just need to figure out a way how to solve the situation, which is why you might want to find reliable locksmiths in your area and call them if you get locked out. Changing the locks is a simple solution that goes a long way, so take it into consideration straight away.

Invest in a security system

While this may not be your favorite way to spend money, investing in a home security system is one of the best ideas when it comes to taking the safety of your family and property to a whole new level. These systems are easy to install and maintain, but the level of safety and a sense of security they bring with them is amazing. You can even install them on your own and customize your security system so that it fits your specific needs, which is why this is a project you should definitely look into.

Purchase a safe

No matter how much money you make, having a safe in your home is a must. However, not every safe is good enough, and you should make sure it’s waterproof, fire-resistant, and protected enough to keep your valuable items safe against burglars. Find a place to hide it – your attic, your walls, your stairs, and even your floor are among the most popular hiding places – and you can be sure your safe will never be found, even if burglars somehow manage to enter your home.

Some of the other ways to stay safe in this day and age include installing some motion-activated lights in your backyard, using a smart garage door opener, purchasing smoke alarms and installing them in every room of your home, and making sure you always lock all your doors and windows whenever you’re leaving home or going to bed.

 Guest Contributor, Lillian Connors

5 Safety Tips for Summer Home Maintenance Tasks

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5 Safety Tips for Summer Home Maintenance Tasks

Home maintenance is a high priority in the hottest season of the year. With rising temperatures and sudden storms, you want to secure your property against the perils of summer weather. Beyond a broken HVAC system, a small leak in the roof could cause untold amounts of water damage to your ceiling and walls.

This is the perfect time to schedule inspections and make the necessary repairs. Fortunately, you can handle most maintenance tasks on your own with the right tools and a positive mindset. It's easy enough to clean your gutters, wash your deck and attend to similar duties — as long as you remain cautious.

Though most maintenance tasks seem pretty benign, no one plans for an accident. They happen without warning, when you least expect it, and you can potentially harm yourself if you don't take precautions. What should you do to mitigate the risk of injury when working around your home?

Here are five indispensable safety tips for summer home maintenance.

1. Only Work With Chemicals in Well-Ventilated Areas

Even a common task like cleaning a bathroom with chemical solutions is potentially harmful without proper ventilation. Other jobs, like repainting your interior or refinishing your floors, can also cause respiratory issues.

When you're working with chemicals in an enclosed space, open the windows to release any trapped fumes. Wear a respirator, safety goggles, gloves and sturdy footwear to avoid any chemical burns or eye injuries. Protective equipment will vary from project to project, so use your discretion.

2. Follow the Standard Protocol When Using Ladders

Your gutters play an important role in protecting the siding, doors, windows and foundation of your home from water. Naturally, you have to keep them clear of debris, but it isn't as simple as climbing the general-use ladder you store in your garage.

It's best to avoid orchard or wooden ladders, as they tend to wobble. Opt for an aluminum ladder instead. Examine it beforehand, checking for dents, defects, and loose bolts or screws, and ask someone to spot you if possible.

Remember these tips for ladder safety as well:

·     A stepladder will suffice for a one-story house, but if it has two or more stories, you'll need an extension ladder.

·     If you lean an extension ladder against your gutters, protect it by placing a short 2x4 inside.

·     Fiberglass ladders are also adequate for this type of job, but they're heavier and only good for shorter periods of work.

·     The ladder should have a shelf sturdy enough to hold a 5-gallon bucket secured with a lanyard.

·     Make sure to extend the ladder fully until the arms lock in place.

·     Keep your hips squarely between the two rails and try not to lean over the sides.

·     Stay off the top two rungs.

3. Choose the Correct Protective Equipment for the Job

You should also give thought to your gloves. You might own a cotton or leather pair, but these can cause problems. Cotton has a tendency to soak up dirty water and bacteria, and leather ones are often inflexible and shrink when they dry.

Thick, suede gloves are your best option. They'll ensure your safety and improve efficiency while cleaning, perfect for gutters.

4. Clean the Work Area After You're Finished

After you've finished a task, you'll need to clean up your work area. This may seem like an obvious suggestion, but it's all too easy to rush as you're storing tools, equipment and various items.

·     Seal containers of sensitive liquids and materials.

·     Remove power tool leads from any wall sockets.

·     Place power tools in an area inaccessible to kids.

·     Roll up extension cords, ropes and lines.

·     Fold and stow ladders in a safe location.

·     Collect and discard remaining debris.

Whether you're completing a maintenance task or working on a DIY project, these steps are essential.

5. Acknowledge Your Limitations and Ask for Help

As mentioned earlier, you can handle most tasks on your own without the help of a professional. However, it's critical to acknowledge when you need to contact someone with more experience. Many projects fall outside the category of a DIY project, and recognizing that will reduce the risk of accidents or injuries.

For example, you should leave major jobs involving gas lines, electricity and roof work to professionals. They have an informed understanding of these areas, and though you may want to save money, your safety comes first.

Choose Safety This Summer

Home maintenance is a high priority in the hottest season of the year, and now you can manage it safely. As long as you follow the five suggestions above, you can feel confident as you complete tasks around your property, secure in the knowledge you've taken the necessary precautions.

Guest Contributor, Holly Welles 

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.

How To Renovate A House

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How To Renovate A House

If you are one of those who have decided to buy an old house, inherit a property or need to renovate your home for many years, do not worry: no matter how bad some spaces look, everything can be improved.

The best thing we can do when planning a reform is to evaluate in advance what we want to do, ask for estimates and ask what type of work is required and how many weeks or months of work each replacement involves. There are three key issues that, when analyzed, prevent mistakes and unnecessary expenses. You can get more ideas about home renovation on 10ion.com.

If we are thinking about economic and simple reforms, the budgets are more limited and, the times of work, more reduced. But more than once, especially in the case of the kitchen reforms , we underestimated the deadlines and the costs and then we found ourselves with a difficult problem to travel.

You must assume from the outset that a "radical change" in your home will not be economic, because a major remodeling is often expensive. You should Product Reviews, Buyer's Guide, Why Reviews are important, What Things Needs to consider before online shopping before renovation. There are ways to spend less if you plan things well and learn which arrangements are more expensive and which require less investment . From there, according to your desires and possibilities, order your priorities and move forward.

House reforms: what you should know

Reforming a house is not something you can face from one day to the next. There are several issues to evaluate in detail:

The fundamental thing when planning a remodeling is to have clear your priorities: think about what you want to achieve. It is not the same to reform only one bathroom that to make an integral reform. Nor is it the same to make a traditional reform (raising walls, etc) that opting for dry work and cut execution times and budget. If we are going to modify the distribution of the house we must consult with an architect and also define what materials and coatings we want to put in each place

If the renovation is a simple change of face, without throwing walls, lifting floors or making structural changes, the thing is simpler. But, even so, bear in mind that, inevitably, a reform -especially if it is in bathrooms, kitchens or laundries usually demands changes in water inlets and drains, in pipes, in plugs and points of light and in coatings. You may be interested:  Water heater or hot water tank: the ideal option for each house.

One of the main excuses or factors that discourage us when starting work at home is time. As fast as it may be, a remodeling always alters the routine and order of the home , which makes it difficult to find the ideal moment. But doing a "refresh" at home renews the energy and totally changes a space.

If your house is small and you want to enlarge it, there are small tricks that help us create much wider spaces: take advantage of the outside space (like a small patio or terrace to enjoy with the family) or I grew up, adding a second level . You may be interested:  different types of stairs for indoor and outdoor .

Keep in mind that the extensions are not all external. If the house has many environments and partitions, it is advisable to eliminate some to have large spaces , which will make the sense of spaciousness inside the house multiply considerably, creating a much more welcoming and social.

If the height allows it, it is important to raise the ceilings to expand the space, but having analyzed well where the facilities will be passed.

The small environments can be reset with good decorating tricks, which give the feeling of a much wider space. We share some keys to decorate a small kitchen or a small bathroom.

Painting and renovating the curtains you can renovate quite an environment: you can see ideas of paint colors for interiors and  models of curtains for windows.

How to reform an old house

Remodeling environments has its complexity, but when we want to find out how to renovate an old house the thing gets even more difficult, because more than once we have to touch structures and rethink measures. In general, it involves changes in the facade, interior and domestic equipment. A refresh is not enough. The ideal in these cases is for an architect or builder to see the plans and advise us.

A good idea is to renovate the exterior with modern color combinations , which completely reinterpret the appearance of the house.

Kitchen renovations

Making changes in the kitchen is resetting the heart of the home . Some keys to keep in mind:

The first thing you must evaluate is the structure: if you want to make deeper changes it is essential that an architect see the plans to avoid problems. Pipes and wiring design is fundamental.

Do not rush the coatings. Today there are many options and different types of floors for each environment and it is worth seeing pros and cons of each one. Something important you should know if you want to remodel the kitchen is that, if the floor is in good condition and you just do not like it, you can stick on it another covering: you do not need to break.

Changing the kitchen furniture is a way to give a completely new air to this environment and generate a sense of absolute renewal. Keep in mind that cabinets are what you see most when you enter the kitchen, because they occupy much of the available space and are at eye level. Also, it is something that you use daily and the investment is worth it.

Bathroom renovations

The bathroom is one of the environments that most need a periodic renovation, both for pipes and for the wear of coatings, paint and artifacts. In addition, fashions change and new possibilities arise that add comfort and we can take advantage of it. Changes you can make:

Initial step is to check the pipes: the first thing to renovate in a bathroom is usually the pipe.

Change coatings and colors of the paint. Venecitas and colored walls are widely used. In general, they look very good on a single wall, combining with wood or smoothed cement. You can see:  Colors for double bedrooms: all options.

Replace the bathtub with a shower. It is one of the most classic reforms in bathrooms, saves space, gain practicality and accessibility when you get older or suffer some type of reduced mobility. You can read:  how to decorate a small bathroom.

You can also think about adding a whirlpool and make some changes to build a spa at home.  Also, if you have space and budget, do not forget the benefits of the sauna.

 Guest Contributor, Jacklin J

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Preparing Your Buy-To-Let Property for a New Tenant

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Preparing Your Buy-To-Let Property for a New Tenant

When a tenant moves out of a rental property, that’s your chance as the landlord to make improvements and changes to the property without having to work around those living there. If you do it right, you can even ask a higher price out of the next tenant. However, there are right and wrong ways to do it. You want to clean the property up and bring it up to date with current trends, all without breaking the bank.

Cleaning Up

It’s common sense (and common courtesy) to clean up your property when a tenant moves out. Good tenants will likely try to clean up as much of their mess as they can, but there are many things that residents overlook, such as unclogging drains and scrubbing down appliances. If the previous tenants damaged anything on the property, you’ll have to go about fixing those things, as well.

Besides what we mentioned above, there are a few more things you’ll want to look out for when cleaning up the property:

●      Change the locks

●      Ensure all the plumbing is functioning correctly with no leaks, clogs, or strange noises

●      Verify that all appliances, utilities, and lights work

●      Remove any stains, if possible

●      Clean underneath counters, appliances, and other objects

●      Get rid of any lingering unpleasant odors

●      Look for any forgotten belongings or things left behind

●      Make sure windows and doors are in good working order

Optimizing Your Property

Once your tenants have moved out, you’ll have as much time as you want to make improvements to the property. This can be anything from repainting the walls and replacing any old, stained carpet to installing modern fixtures and finishes. If you have the time and the money, it can sometimes be a good investment to renovate any old styles in the property at this point, too.

Newer buildings can almost always demand higher rent, so if you’re smart about your spending, you might be able to make a return on the investment right away. As a landlord, you’re allowed to pass on the costs of your renovations to your tenants, too, so if you play your cards right (i.e., don’t make your rent costs egregious, or no one will move in), there’s really no reason not to renovate.

As a landlord, getting as much return on your property investments as you can is probably one of your priorities. Besides the necessity of cleaning up between tenants, adding a few modern technological features here or there like smart appliances and electronics, in addition to updating finishes, colors, and décor can go a long way towards boosting the value of your property.

Guest Contributor, Cindy Trillo

Age-Friendly Home Remodeling Tips

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Age-Friendly Home Remodeling Tips

Although there are many senior homes and communities for the elderly to move into, most seniors still decide to stay in their own home and take care of themselves for as long as they possibly can. However, not many of them have thought this through carefully enough. In order for them to stay safe inside their own home while going through physical and mental changes that their age is bringing, it’s necessary to do some remodeling and adjust their living space to their needs. Here are some tips on how to do this.

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Reconsider the stairs

At a certain point climbing up and down stairs becomes too difficult, making this one of the first issues to address in a home of an elderly person. In case it’s only a short set of steps, it will probably suffice to add a ramp with a handhold, but if it’s a two-floor house or an apartment building, perhaps a better idea would be to install an elevator. If that there isn’t enough room for a standard elevator, or even a smaller one, there are also several versions of stair lifts that you can choose from, so make sure you get all the relevant information before you make any decisions.

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Find place for a guest room

This is one of the changes you should make to give your elderly relative some peace of mind and to make them more cheerful. Unfortunately, many elderly people are lonely, which can even lead to depression, so having guests and somebody to talk to will always cheer them up. If there’s a room for such guests in their home, it provides them with an option to spend a few days with their aging host. The room doesn’t have to be too elaborately decorated. A comfortable bed, a cupboard or two, a chair and a table will do. Add an oil burner and some natural scented soy melts to make the place warmer, more inviting, but also fresher. And if at any point the elderly person needs a professional caregiver, this room can prove to be a very practical asset.

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Replace the doorknobs

When an elderly person’s mobility is decreased or they suffer from arthritis, the common round doorknobs can prove to be very difficult to handle. The lever-style ones can be easier for them to use, so consider replacing the regular doorknobs for those. Similarly, you should switch the round faucet knobs with the lever ones as well, to give the person more independence and make everyday life a bit less complicated for them.

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Change the flooring

When it comes to flooring in an aged person’s home, there are some things you should definitely avoid. The most dangerous one is slippery flooring, which can easily cause an accident and a serious injury. When renovating their home, remove any tiles that are too smooth and polished. In case changing the flooring is too much of an investment, make sure you add rugs to the slick areas of the floor, to create some traction. If your loved one is in a wheelchair, then you should either install hardwood or laminate flooring, or cover the floors with vinyl tiles. If you opt for carpeting the floors, make sure that the pile length is as low as possible and that the carpets get firmly attached to the surface underneath it.

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Install automatic lights

Another way to prevent an aged person from falling or bumping into something and hurting themselves is by installing automatic lights. These can have a timer to switch them on or off in accordance with your loved one’s habits, or they can even be controlled through an app on their smartphone, so that they don’t have to look for the light switch in the dark. Also, it might help to add a few more lighting fixtures to make moving around in the evening easier and safer for them.

There are always ways to improve an aged loved one’s quality of life, and remodeling their home to fit their needs is one of them. However, don’t forget about their mental health and don’t let them feel lonely and forgotten. Visit them frequently or hire somebody to keep them company and help them with whatever they need. 

Guest Contributor, Diana Smith

 

 

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

Tips To Keep Your Home Safe From Burglars

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Tips To Keep Your Home Safe From Burglars

A home invasion is one of the scariest occurrences that can happen to a homeowner. Even if you’re not at home when the invasion happens, it is still completely terrifying.

If you are at home when it happens, you can forget about sleeping ever again, or at least for a long time. Of the estimated three million burglaries that happen yearly, only around seven percent included a violent altercation. If this isn’t setting your mind at ease, we don’t blame you.

Before you resort to installing a barb wire fence, we’ve got a few tips for keeping your home safe from an invasion. It’s not as hard as you’d think!

Invest In A Security System

Let’s face it, there is no better protection for your home than a security system. Having a security system installed by a professional and reputable company proven to get results will deter any potential burglars from your home.

The firstsecurityservices.com website says that systems come in a variety of packages that are tailored to every budget, so you are able to access home protection that works with your budget. Video surveillance, alarms and lights are all common when it comes to security system installations.

There are also many ways in which to trigger a system, whether it be by cracking a lock, opening a door when the system is armed or breaking a window. Deciding what will work for your family is what is most important.
For example, someone with small children might find a more sensitive security system to be obnoxious. The options are plentiful, and you’ll be able to find one that exists in harmony with your lifestyle.

Keep Expensive Items Out of View

A great start to protection from burglaries is making sure that your home doesn’t show any weaknesses. You can call the local police station to perform a test by walking around your house from the outside to look for such weaknesses.

 A weakness can be anything from faulty locks to visible electronics. If a thief can easily spot a brand new laptop charging on the counter, you might have a problem.

There’s no need to completely change the look of your home just because you fear a burglary, and you’d like to keep expensive items hidden. Take a stroll around the inside of your home and make little changes where it’s convenient for you, such as switching up the charging spot for that laptop!

Stay On Top Of Your Landscape

All trees, grass, shrubbery and other landscaping around the entrances and walkways to your home should be kept short and trimmed. Not only does it give off the appearance of the homeowner consistently being around, but there will be no place for potential burglars to hide.

You could also build a fence! A six foot privacy fence is a great way to deter any sort of nonsense from coming into your yard. That includes raccoons and people who want to steal your things.

Fencing is relatively easy to install yourself, and there are many options available that don’t involve digging or pouring concrete. Also, fencing doesn’t have to cost you an arm and a leg. It can be a wonderful, budget friendly option to significantly lower the chances of a break in. Just make sure you keep your gate locked!

Motion Sensor Lights

An easy home installation to keep your property safe from burglaries are motion sensor lights. Whenever they sense motion, typically from a certain range, the lights will click on.
The great thing about a motion sensor light is that thieves have no idea if the light is a motion sensor light, or if it’s been turned on by someone they thought wasn’t home. They will rarely take the time to hang around and find out.

Keep Your Keys To Yourself

We know it’s hard, but try not to leave a spare key outside. Doing this only gives thieves a really easy way to get into your home. If you need a spare key, keep it in your vehicle, or better yet, a neighbor you trust. Leaving it in a fake rock, on top of the door frame or under the mat is a recipe for disaster.

Speaking of neighbors, they are your best resource for home protection when you go on vacation. Let them know when you’re leaving, how long you’ll be gone and ask them to collect any packages and mail that builds up. Not only are they doing you a favor, they will be warding off burglars by making it look like you’re home!

Always Lock Your Doors

Many people consider their neighborhood safe and leave without locking up. While this may be true, even the safest neighborhoods can have issues with some sort of crime, breaking and entering included.

When you leave your home, lock up every door and window every single time. Burglars tend to be on a time crunch, and they’re looking for a quick way in, especially during the daytime hours. Locking up prevents that possibility. It might seem like common sense, but locked doors prevent many burglaries.

Better Safe Than Sorry

There are many ways, some of them completely obvious, that you can protect your home from potential thieves. It’s not about looking for the bad, but more about setting yourself up for the good.

Taking the first steps to home security might seem a bit ridiculous to anyone who has never had an experience with crime in their neighborhood. It’s important to remember that crime, even in gated, affluent neighborhoods, can pop up. If you’ve taken necessary measures to protect your home and your family, you can prevent burglaries without even knowing it.

At the very least you’ll sleep better at night.

Guest Contributor, Tom Masters

General Hot Water Repairs Required at Home

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General Hot Water Repairs Required at Home

Hot water is perpetually required in western countries where the temperature is mostly low throughout the year. In Asian countries as well, hot water is required when the winters set in and taking bath and other activities need hot or warm water. For this purpose, a hot water heater is required. Hot water heaters can function perfectly well for years, but there might be times when they break down. Under this situation, you will need to call professionals to carry out the needed hot water repairs on your water heating system. Let’s know more about these professionals and their services.

When to Call Professionals for Hot Water Repairs

Hot water problems are evident on their own. When you open the faucet and there is no hot water, there is something wrong with the water heater. You might also notice dripping near the water heater or the water heater making gurgling sounds. All these problems need troubleshooting to start functioning right again. You might need to look at certain things to understand the problem and resolve the issue at hand. Unless you are an expert yourself, you will need to call professionals to carry out your hot water repairs in a proficient manner. They will come to your place, identify the source of problem and fix it as needed.  A few common problems that may arise include:

If there is no hot water from your faucet, this means that the water heater is not working at all. Water heater can be of two types – gas or electric. If it is not working, it may be because the energy source is not supplying gas or electricity to run it. Repairing the problem will depend on the type of water heater. Though gas and electric water heaters look almost the same, they function differently. Water is heated in a different manner in gas and electric heaters. The first step would be to adjust the temperature dial in front of the water heater. You can now wait and check the water at the faucet. If it is still not hot, you might need to call a professional to carry out expert hot water repairs. They will diagnose the problem and fix it accordingly.

  • If you suddenly find that there is not enough hot water for everyone, you need to check if your heater is too small. Maybe you have installed a bath tub which needs extra hot water. In such a situation, you will have to take an informed decision and purchase a bigger water heater even though your previous one is functioning just fine. There might be another situation when the temperatures have dropped considerably, and you need extra hot water. In this case, you must adjust the water heater’s dial to hotter temperature.

  • In case your water heater is leaking, the professional might need to flush the water heater tank to remove the mineral deposits from the tank.

  • If the water heater is giving you too much hot water, then again you need to check the thermostat and adjust it to a colder temperature.

  • If you find steam or gurgling sounds coming out from your water heater, then probably the heater is not shutting off at the desired cutoff.

  • In case hot water is discolored or smells bad, then you have to check whether the hot water problem is with the source water or the water heater. In case only the cold water is smelling, the problem is with the source water. It is a known fact that iron, copper, and some other minerals can cause discoloration in the water. To resolve these issues, try installing a water softener.

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If any of these problems do not get solved with the steps mentioned, then you will need help of a professional to get the hot water repairs done.

Conclusion

Water heaters, though generally sturdy, can pose problems when something or the other goes wrong with them. You should have enough knowledge to fix these issues yourself, but if the troubleshooting doesn’t happen properly, call a reliable person to carry out hot water repairs in a professional manner.

 Guest Contributor, Lauren Bracy

Dealing With Flood and Water Damages

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Dealing With Flood and Water Damages

Water damage from a flood is one of the worse disasters that could ever hit your property, and it doesn’t even have to involve a foot or two of floodwater. Even just a few inches of water in areas inside your home or business that aren’t supposed to have water can already force you to fork out a few thousand dollars to deal with water damage.

What should you do in case your property suffers from flood and water damages?

In an ideal world, a quick call to water damage restoration services should be the only solution. However, you need immediate action, or the water damage is going to get worse. Also, if you’re relying on your insurance provider to pay for everything, things are also bound to get a bit more complicated and delayed because you have to follow a certain process, and that process could take some time.

Call your insurance company

Once you see that your property is flooded, call your insurance provider right away. Report every single detail that you see, and document everything by taking photos and videos of the affected area. Wait patiently for confirmation from your provider that you’re covered for this type of situation.

Waiting, however, means worse water damage for your property. So if you want to deal with it right away, inform your provider that water removal must begin immediately. The insurance company will likely grant your request and will give you instructions that you need to follow strictly, but until then, don’t do anything.

Remove the water

When you finally get that permission to start the cleanup, then proceed to remove all the floodwater using pumps, pails, mops, or anything that will help you evacuate everything. Once all the water is removed, you can immediately dry out the place using portable fans and even the air conditioning unit.

Call water damage restoration services

If you finally get the call from your insurance provider confirming that you are covered, then waste no time in calling restoration services. They have water damage specialists who are adequately trained and equipped to deal with the aftermath of a flood.

They will take care of cleaning up the place and removing parts that have been damaged by the flood. Once they’re done removing the water-damaged parts of your property, they will begin restoring it.  By the time they’re done, your property will look like the way it was before the flood hit.

 Guest Contributor, Judy Olsen

Deciding On The Best Flooring For Your Bathroom

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Deciding on the Best Flooring for Your Bathroom

Some home trends in bathroom floors are much more practical than others. Although some interior design professionals recommend high-end flooring materials such as marble, recycled glass and encaustic cement for the bathroom, this article will outline a number of durable options that are substantially more affordable.

As you conceptualize your well-outfitted bath, you're the interior design person, at least in the beginning stages. There is much to consider. Of course, you'll want to invest in a material that matches your existing design, isn't easily damaged, and doesn't require a lot of maintenance. You're sure to gain valuable insight as you go over the following flooring home trends. If you're ready to decide upon the ideal material, remember to enjoy the process—this is going to be fun!

Hardwood

Although you may love the look of solid hardwood, and have it installed in other areas of your home, you'll want to be careful about choosing this material for your sanctuary room. Let's face it -- hardwood is beautiful, warm, and rich-looking, yes. But rooms with plumbing are much more prone to moisture and standing water than other rooms in the house. For this reason, genuine hardwood isn't generally recommended for use in kitchens and restrooms.

Should you choose to go ahead and install it anyway, the hardwood is likely to expand and contract due to high humidity levels. Eventually, the wood will begin to crack and warp. Having gone to all of the trouble of having the hardwood installed in the first place, you surely wouldn't want to have it all demolished in a few short years and replaced with a more suitable material. A well-ventilated and rarely used half bath or guest bath is an exception, but if your lavatory gets a lot of use or contains a shower or bathtub, you might consider some of the other home trends in floors for the powder room.

If you must have hardwood in your powder room, however, you could go for engineered hardwood planks. It's made from a plywood base that is overlaid with real wood. This material tolerates moisture better than natural hardwood. Even so, a busy loo is probably not the best place for this material.

Porcelain Tile

Now if you're still stuck on wood but don't want to deal with all of the moisture-related problems, take heart. Home building materials have come a long way, and now science has come up with wood-look tiles. And guess what? You will find that a wide selection of these are made out of the title material.

You might be surprised at porcelain's resemblance to real wood, especially when the floor has been completely installed. And you'll be happy to know that these tiles are completely waterproof and resistant to scratches and other potential day-to-day damage. Given all of these advantages, you'll still want to be careful about dropping anything heavy on these types of tiles. The impact could seriously damage a tile or two to the point that they would need replacing. Think about it: if you drop a plate, the impact shatters it.

These tiles come in all designs and sizes, however, not just wood-look planks. You can find them in a plethora of hues, including earth tones, white and gray, and popular square sizes range from 12” x 12” to 24” x 24” and beyond. If slightly rectangular or glazed tiles are your thing, you'll find much to choose from there, too.

And don't forget that the tiles can be laid in patterns that give a more upscale look to your floors. Having the tiles installed in, say, a herringbone or stacked pattern can cost more at the outset, but the end result could be well worth it. Maintenance will be a breeze with just a soft mop or vacuum. This material continues to be a popular option because of its durability, style and cost-effectiveness.

Ceramic Tile

Another viable option is ceramic tile. It's important to note here that there are only slight differences between the two tiles, including the price. Porcelain tile is higher-priced than its counterpart, and there is also the fact that the tiles are considered to be more water-resistant than ceramic tiles are because of their density. These tiles are, therefore, thought to be more durable as well. Do remember that both kinds of tile are included in the same broad category.

With all of that in mind, you might give serious consideration to adding this type of tile to your space. This tile resists stains and scratches, especially when topped with a protective glaze, and it comes in a beautiful array of designs and colors.

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Laminate

Laminate consists of four layers that are fused together: wear, decorative, core, and balancing. Some of the advantages of laminate are that it resists dings and scratches, and it's easy to clean and install. You may even choose laminate pieces that look like tiles. Laminate is also budget-friendly.

Now for the downside of using laminate on your floor. Laminate will warp if exposed to excessive moisture, so standing water can be a costly hazard. The material can also be slippery, so care must be taken to quickly clean up those occasional spills.

If you choose laminate for your floors, however, you'll want to avoid the kind of laminate that just snaps into place. Unfortunately, it will do nothing to prevent the seepage of water into the seams. Once it reaches the floor's sub layer, the end result is the dreaded warping. Instead, invest in laminate material that has seams that are glued down. The glue will act as a deterrent to water seepage.

You'll find laminate in various shapes, finishes, and textures. You might even be able to install this particular flooring yourself if you're handy.

As you can see, each of the materials above can be a great choice, and you're sure to find something that fits your design tastes as well as your overall budget. Once you decide what you want, the process should go very quickly. Good luck and have fun redesigning your bathroom floors!

Guest Contributor, Julia Ellison