Archive for 'Home Care & Improvements'

How to Prevent Ice Dams on Your Roof

Posted on 06. Nov, 2017 by .


ice dams

Ice dams are some of the most troublesome situations for homeowners in the winter season. They are a harmful combination or poor ventilation in the attic and cause more damage to roofing. If ignored so long, they can cause serious damage to insulation, paint, gutters, and roof as well as to interior drywall of the house. Hence, it is really essential to take preventive measures on time to save your house on time.

Causes behind the occurrence of Ice Dams:

When the snow starts melting from upper areas of the roof due to an increase of temperature in your attic, it leads to the formation of ice dams. This situation causes water flow from the top of the roof towards the ground but due to low temperature in the environment, it freezes down again on the way creating an ice dam. When this ice stays so long on the attic, it may cause leakage into the attic with the slow melting process. That is why professionals often recommend using proper insulation arrangement on your roofs.

Create proper ventilation:

One of the most powerful solutions against Ice Dams is to use proper ventilation on roof deck so that heat can be taken out and it can stay cold inside. It is believed that ventilation arrangement helps to maintain proper airflow in the roof area so that it can stay safe from the creation of ice dams.

Prefer to use roof rake:

If you live in an area that often suffers from heavy snowfall then it is good to use a roof rake to avoid ice dams. It can help you to take away some snow from roof edge so that it cannot create ice dams due to a temperature increase in the attic.

Take help from professionals:

The ultimate solution to avoid ice dams is to call professionals in your area to take all preventive measures with right procedures. They can help you to solve all troubles so that your house can stay safe in the winter season. These people have so many special equipments and tools to manage the situation so that snow can be taken out carefully from the roof.

Winter season can be full of fun but only if you have proper arrangements to stay safe from its harmful effects. Prefer to be careful even before the season arrives and take some preventive measures:

  • Make some efforts to ventilate the ridges and eaves so that it can circulate cold air into the attic and maintain the desired temperature to prevent ice dams.
  • Create a proper heat escape with the help of weather-stripped caps that are generally made up of foil faced foam board. You can use them easily with the help of aluminum
  • Add proper insulation to keep your attic free from heat. Also, ensure complete fire safety in the area.

All these steps can help you to maintain a low temperature in the attic. Prefer to stay in contact with professionals to avail right guidelines for complete details. Right procedures and right tools are key to success for home safety.


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Types of Tools for Carpet Installation

Posted on 15. Sep, 2017 by .


carpet tools

If your carpet is too old and unsalvageable from hiring a steam cleaning service for carpet cleaning, you will need to replace it. This means you will need to purchase and install new carpet. You can hire a professional carpet installer or you can attempt to install the new carpet on your own.

If you decide to attempt to install carpet on your own, you will need to purchase a few tools in order to ensure the project is a success. You will still save money overall when compared to hiring a professional.

Here are the necessary tools for carpet installation:

Linoleum Knife

You want a sturdy and sharp linoleum knife to cut through the old carpet for removal and for cutting the appropriate sizes from the new carpet rolls from the store. You can purchase a linoleum knife at most neighborhood hardware stores.

Seam Roller

A seam roller is necessary to meld separate pieces of carpet together after the two pieces are attached at the seams. This will conceal the seal for a more seamless appearance across wall-to-wall carpet.


Carpet Tape

This type of tape is used beneath the carpet on the underside and it is stretch out across the seams of the two pieces of carpet you attach together. The carpet tape should not be visible after the installation is complete.


These two carpet installation tools are used to firmly press the carpet down along the walls of the rooms in your home. You do not want carpet bubbles or bumps to occur in the middle of the floor so these are two of the more important tools for this project.

Power Stretcher

This is the signature and most essential tool when it comes to installing wall-to-wall carpet in a room. You cannot complete the project without this tool. It is possible that the hardware store will have a power stretcher to rent but if not you will need to purchase one. The tool is responsible for stretching out the carpet across the entire length of the room to ensure it is flat across the surface.

Large Magnet

The large magnet is used to remove all of the old staples from the previous carpet after you remove them from the hardwood or subfloor beneath. You can also use the magnet as a weight to press down on the new carpet seams and to flatten them across the length of the floor.

Bonding Iron

A bonding iron is uses heat to seal the seams of carpet together and remove wrinkles and ripples across the seams of two pieces. Be careful with this piece of equipment as it operates at extremely high temperatures that could lead to painful burns.

Additional tools you will need that you might already own are a staple gun, a hammer and tack strips. These can all be purchased online or at your local hardware store for a relatively minimal cost.

If you decide you do not want to purchase all of the tools above, you might consider hiring a professional for carpet installation to ensure the job is done 100% correct as carpet is not cheap and you want the job to be done the right way.

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Does Your Home Need New Siding?

Posted on 14. Sep, 2017 by .


If you read our last post, you now know if your home needs a new roof. The goal of this post is to inform you whether your home needs new siding or not.

Siding is a critical component of a home. Your siding protects the framing of the home and the interior from the elements. You want siding to be in excellent condition if possible.

Here are some signs you need new siding on your home:

#1. ROT & WEAR

The most obvious indication you need new siding is if you see rot or crumbling along the exterior of the siding.

In some instances, the rot is isolated to small portions of the siding and can then be repaired but if it spreads across the entire siding, you will need to replace everything.

You cannot live with rot on your home as the siding will no longer provide proper protection or insulation from the elements.


Another visible indication that the siding is in need of replacing is if you notice cracks along the exterior of the home. Cracks are a problem for a few reasons.

One reason is that the cracks are not attractive, but another major reason is that the cracks will allow moisture to permeate the exterior of the home and reach the wood frame where rot will then occur.

The cracks can also allow access to the interior of your home to various insects and rodents.


If the siding panels appear warped or are no longer lying flat along the side of the home, it is a good indication that they’re wearing down and that moisture might be building up behind them.


You might also be able to tell if you need new siding from the temperature in your home. If there are drafts of air near the walls or if the home always feels too cold, it is a good sign that the siding is wearing down and no longer providing the optimal amount of protection from the wind and weather.

You might also notice an increase in your heating and cooling bills too. If the cost of heating your home is on the rise, one reason might be the siding on your home wearing down.


If you see mold appearing on or near the walls of your home it is a good indication that moisture and humidity are coming in from the exterior of the home and permeating the siding.

You never want mold in your home, especially black mold, and you will need to remove it right away. Once the mold is gone from your home, it will be time to consider calling a service to install new vinyl siding on your home.

Perform routine inspections on the siding of your home multiple times each year. You should do this immediately following the winter months and the summer months after long periods of rain and severe weather.

Don’t ignore any problems you notice. You might be able to repair siding rather than replace it if you take action right away.

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Do You Need a New Roof?

Posted on 23. Aug, 2017 by .


old roof

Let’s face it. Our homes get old and wear down as do individual components of a home. Inside, your carpet gets old and needs to be replaced. Outside, it’s the siding or pavement or your roof. Do you need a new roof?

There are signs to watch out for that will let you know if it is time for a new roof for your home. This post will offer some of the signs to look out for on your roof:


This first thing to consider about your roof is how old it is. An asphalt roof is expected to last around 20-25 years on average. How old is your roof? If your roof is 20 years old or older, it is a good indication that it might be time to start planning on installing a new roof on your home in the near future.


Are the shingles on the roof laying flat and firm or are the shingles starting to buckle and curl? Warped shingles are a sign that they need to be replace and a sign that the roof in general is starting to wear down.

Missing shingles are another sign that you might need a new roof. If shingles fall off then the condition of the roof is deteriorating.


The valleys in your roof are very important to the construction and well-being of the roof. If shingles are warped or missing the the roof valleys water will not drain properly and leaks and other damage could soon start to occur.


Inspect your gutters and see if debris or granules from your shingles are piling up in the gutters. Shingles will start to deteriorate and break apart with the debris falling down and settling into your gutters. This is another sign the roof is in need of repair or replacement.


Enter your attic and see if any sunlight is coming in through the roof. If large or small specks of sunlight are coming in through the roof above, it is time for a new roof for your home.

You now know the indicators to determine if you need a new roof or not. We recommend checking these items two or three times each year for assurance.

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Is Your Carpet Too Old?

Posted on 26. Jul, 2017 by .


old carpet

One of the home repairs or upgrades that homeowners put off is purchasing and installing new carpet. The main reason is the cost. New carpet is very expensive and something many homeowners don’t want to pay for unless they have to.

The good news is that carpet will last a long time if it receives the proper care and attention. This includes routine vacuuming and scheduling deep cleaning one time every year (or more). Learn the benefits of professional carpet cleaning here.

But over time, the carpet will wear down and simply becomes too old for cleaning and too old to leave in your home. Most carpet does not retain its quality for more than 10-15 years. Here is how to tell if your carpet is too old to restore or leave in your home:

Signs Your Carpet is Old

Flat Fibers

Inspect the surface of the carpet and see if the fibers or strands are flat or buoyant. Brand new carpet should be very resilient and buoyant. Older carpet is much flatter and worn down. If the stands of carpet on the surface are lying flat or don’t rebound from foot traffic and other pressure, this means the strands are old and the wear is irreversible.

Carpet Bubbling

You might notice a bump or a hill in the middle of wall-to-wall carpet. This is called carpet bubbling. Healthy carpet will lay flat from wall-to-wall whereas older or unhealthy carpet will start to bubble in the middle. This usually occurs because the pad underneath the carpet has worn down and created an air pocket, or bubble, between the carpet.

You can get carpet bubbles from new carpet if the installer did a poor jump and sometimes it occurs if the carpet is very wet. But if the carpet is dry and was not installed recently, the bumps are a good indication your carpet is too old to restore and should be replaced.

Carpet Browning

If dark stains or brown spots reappear and remain on the surface of your carpet, it means the carpet pad is no longer stain-resistant. If the carpet gets wet, the pad absorbs it and then evaporation pushes the brown water to the surface of the carpet. Reoccurring and old carpet stains are a sign that the carpet can no longer fight off staining or be 100% clean from a professional service. This is especially common for polyester carpet due to its construction from recycled crude oils.

If you notice these signs in your carpet, we recommend replacing it with new carpet. This is because older carpet is not visually appealing, nor is it comfortable or padded. The older the carpet, the more likely it is to retain dirt, dust and allergens and create an unhealthy environment in your home for you, your children and your pets too.

Your wallet might not love it, but you will be happy once you decide to purchase new carpet and see it installed throughout the floors in your home. This will create a colorful, clean and fresh atmosphere for you to live in.

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How to Install a Pedestal Sink

Posted on 01. Jul, 2017 by .


pedestal sink

You have to decide if you need to hire a professional during a kitchen remodel or bathroom remodel. Some elements of the remodel require their expertise but you can cut the costs some if you complete some of the remodel yourself.

One job you can do on your own during a bathroom remodel is to install a pedestal sink. This is an easy job for the amateur plumber and repairman. Here is how to start:

Before you start demolishing your old sink or tearing apart your bathroom, you should read the instructions on the new pedestal sink to ensure your wall can support it and that your home meets the plumbing requirements for the model you purchased. The installation becomes much more complicated if you need to reroute your plumbing.

If everything is in good shape, you can begin the installation. The first thing to do is to shut off the water valve beneath the current vanity and turn on the faucet to release residual water in the base and plumbing.

Now loosen the bolts to disconnect the drain pipes and disconnect the water lines from the vanity and valves.

Then use a razor blade to cut the sealant that is connecting the vanity to the back wall or backsplash in your bathroom. If the top of the vanity is connected to the cabinet, you will need to run the razor blade along the bottom of the vanity to remove it too. You should now be able to lift the top right off. Then unscrew the vanity cabinet from the back wall and the floor and remove it from the bathroom.

Now is a good opportunity to install new plumbing hardware and valves since it is visible and the vanity is no longer obstructing access. This should eliminate the hassle of repairing old plumbing at a future date after the pedestal sink installation.

The model of pedestal sink you bought might need an additional support bar installed in the wall behind it. To do this you need to cut out a section of the drywall near the top of the sink and saw out indents in the support beams behind in. Then slide in a new horizontal support beam for the pedestal sink. Then repair the wall surface.

You could use this opportunity to paint the bathroom wall or install a tile backsplash behind the sink since there is nothing obstructing access.

Now position the pedestal sink base 10 inches from the wall and set the sink basin on top of it. The basin should be flush against the wall. Adjust the distance of the base from the wall until the basin is flush.

Now mark the anchor holes for the pedestal sink along the back wall and the floor and install hanger bolts on the wall. Leave an inch extending from the wall.

Secure the base to the floor with a lag bolt and washer. Don’t overtighten this bolt.

Now position the sink basin over the lever hanging bolts and connect to the pedestal base. Tighten all the bolts but don’t overtighten.

You can now turn the water on in your bathroom again and run the faucet to ensure that there are no leaks from the bolts or anywhere else there shouldn’t be. If you don’t see any links, the installation is complete.

You can now continue on with your bathroom remodel.

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Kitchen Remodeling: DIY or Hire a Professional?

Posted on 08. Jun, 2017 by .


Some of the information you’ve read online or heard your friends talk about home improvements can be misleading. As you read through different sources and watch television shows, you might feel like taking on that remodeling project by yourself. The information is given looks so like something you can follow and successfully accomplish your project.

However, if you were to interview some of the many individuals who attempted DIY remodeling projects, they’ll inform you not all projects are as easy as it may look. If you think you want to attempt a DIY project, consider discussing your ideas and plans with a professional contractor. This will help you get expert advise on which projects need a professional and which ones are best for DIY.

When should you DIY?

The starting point to any DIY home improvement project is assessing your skills and abilities. Do you have what it takes to successfully accomplish the project, however small it could be? Do you have the right tools, equipment, and materials for the job? How much time is needed to successfully accomplish the project? These are very important questions that will guide you.

There are smaller home improvement projects that only need a few tools and may not require any technical expertise. Small tasks such as adding trims or replacing your light fixtures won’t need any professional help and you can do them by yourself. Kitchen remodeling projects require a lot of time despite the fact that they might not be so complex. You should not devote and commit yourself to any project that requires specialized training and equipment to accomplish.

When should you contact a professional?

Large and complex kitchen improvement projects such as changing countertops, removing and adding cabinets, installing electrical components, and replacing appliances and sinks should be left for the right professional.

Leaving complex and large remodeling projects will not only protect your property and save you from injury but save you lots of money in the long run. Tap into the extensive expertise and experience of professionals and save yourself time.

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