How to Maintain Your Roof in the Spring Time

Ah Springtime. The cold weather from the winter has come to an end and the warm weather is making it’s way in. The trees and flowers are blooming and everyone seems to brighten up like the sun.

As magical as this time of the year may be, it’s also a time when you should be maintaining your roof. In fact, it’s one of the times of the year when maintenance is most important. While everything is beginning to bloom, your roof is beginning to be exposed to external circumstances that can do it harm.

In this article, we want to talk about three threats that your roof may experience during the spring, and what you can do to get a grip on them.

1.) Tree Limbs and Branches

Tree branches can fall off at all times of the year, especially when storms hit, leaving behind leaves, branches, twigs, and other debris to clutter your roof and gutters. You may not be able to see from a distance, but sometimes these debris can do damage that can only be seen up close. This could include holes, cracks, or gashes or other types that can cause water to stand on your roof, as it could be preventing from flowing off due to all the debris.

Water damage is one of the last things you want for your roof, and could lead to the last resort of an expensive roof replacement if the problem isn’t addressed in time.

2.) Animals 

Critters of all kinds like to land or climb to the depths of your roof, and more often during the spring. Some like to find warmth in your roof and will claw and dig until they get what they need. Even them just moving around on your roof can cause scratches and potential tears.

3.) Strong Weather

The Spring time is the prime time for tornadoes and other strong storms. Damaging winds and hail can cause your shingles to fall off or even create tears in your roof. Not to mention, the heat can cause the roofing materials on your home to consistently contract and expand, and potentially destroy themselves in the process.

How to Concoct Your Own Special Homemade Carpet Cleaning Solution

Carpet is comfortable for our homes but it inevitably becomes dirty and stained in time. Not only that, but deep down in the fibers can lie dirt and other debris that get ground in with vacuuming and frequent walking.

There are plenty of ways to take care of this but why spend a lot of money on renting a carpet cleaning machine or professional when you can make a formula for cheap and easy yourself. Of course it may not take care of the deep dirt, but it will sure keep a fresh top layer for your carpet.

Before beginning, you will need to acquire a few ingredients:

  • Spray Bottle
  • 1 Cup of Warm Water
  • Fresh Sponge
  • Clean Towel
  • 1 Tablespoon of White Vinegar
  • 1 Teaspoon of Dishwashing Liquid
  • 1 Teaspoon of Baking Soda
  • *It’s best advised that you do a spot check before applying this mixture to any large areas. There are many types of carpet out there and they don’t all respond well to the same treatments.

Directions

1.) We begin by mixed all of the ingredients together into an efficient cleaning concoction. Keep in mind that vinegar and baking soda mixed together in large amounts can cause many bubbles and if you aren’t careful, a small explosion. Remember making a volcano in school and using these two ingredients to cause the “explosion?” Yeah, it’s that kind of explosion, ha.

Add the dishwashing liquid first, followed by the white vinegar, and finally the warm water. Put the lid on the spray bottle and hold it over a sink, just enough of an opening at the top to fit in the baking soda.

2.) Vacuum the area and then proceed wipe it gently with the abrasive side of your sponge.

3.) After you have made sure to do a spot check, spray the area with your mixture and gently dab the area with your towel. Be sure not to rub or scrub as this will push the stain deeper into the fibers of carpet, and make the stain more difficult to get rid of.

4.) You should already be able to start seeing some results. Continue to spray and dab the area with your towel to completely take care of the stain.

If the solution has not been as effective as you planned, try repeating the process once your carpet dries. Before doing this, we recommend that you do another spot check but this time on a small portion of the area you previously tried to clean.

5 Easy Landscaping Add-Ons for Your Lawn

Have you been wanting to make some updates to your yard to gain more curb appeal for your home, but don’t want to spend a lot of time of money in the process to make the changes?

In today’s post, we wanted to cover some simple ideas you can use to make some quick and easy adjustments to the outside your home. Better yet, they are inexpensive, yet highly effective.

1.) Plants

Plants, shrubs, and flowers are a great way to brighten up all surroundings, and can be easier to install than you may think. A simple way to plant these are to line them up vertically and not too close nor far apart.

Before choosing a type of plant, tree, bush, or flower for the outside of your home, do a little research to see which types of plants will function best in the area in which you live.

 

2.) Lights

Not only does lighting add a friendly touch to your home, they help with safety and setting the mood for your home. And if you decide to take advantage of planting a tree or flowers, lights are a great way to illuminate your landscaping at night, so your work can be on display 24/7.

You can find a variety of lighting at your local Lowe’s or Home Depot, and of course on many websites online.

3.) Walkways

Most homes have walkways of some shape or kind. Many stand alone, without being surrounded by plants, gravel, or other form of landscape design. If this is what your walkway looks like at the moment, consider adding a few plants, some mulch, or even some lighting to either or both sides.

And if you don’t care to spend some money…

 

4.) Decks and Patios

Adding a deck or even a patio to the back of your home can be a great touch that offers a great space for get togethers and parties. They can even be a solid place to relax and sunbathe on a sunny day.

You could even create a screened in patio, which is beneficial if you have animals that want to be outside.

5.) Fences

Speaking of furry friends, a fence is another way to keep them in the yard, but still allows them to get their time outside.

Fences are also a good way to obtain privacy from your neighbors, not to mention add value to your home.

6 Fun Carpet Cleaning Facts All Homeowners Should Know

vacuumingIt’s obvious to most people that like every other item you own, your carpet has eventually be cleaned. Many people would argue that it costs too much money to hire someone or that it takes too much time to do it on their own, yet the consequences of not keeping it clean can possibly end up costing more in the end.

Carpet may look and feel soft on the exterior but deep within the fibers lie thousands of germs, dirt, and bacteria that can have undesirable effects on health; especially those with allergies. Kids and outdoor pets can only add to the problem, making it take even tougher to keep clean.

In a well-written article we discovered on LoneStarHardSurface.com, there are a handful of facts mentioned that will make you NOT want to miss a carpet cleaning again, which is the inspiration of this article today. The next time you think about laying around or doing yoga on your carpet, you may think twice about the last time you gave it a thorough cleaning.

Here are the 6 most interesting facts we took from the article:

1.) This is kind of a scary one, especially if you have kids.- The stomach bug virus can harbor deep in the fibers of your carpet for up to one month.

2.) Sprinkle salt in your carpet and let it sit in one hour in order to brighten it.

3.) Us humans lost around 1.5 million skin flakes in an hour which become embedded in our carpets.

4.) Many people’s carpets are seven times more filthy than city streets and 4,000 times more than a toilet seat. Talk about germs…

5.) This one may be obvious to some, but: The 5 second rule is non-existent. In carpet, bacteria can live longer than 4 weeks!

6.) Carpet should be professionally cleaned every 12 to 18 months. Many people may think that the professionals just say that to earn more business but after reading some of these facts, wouldn’t you agree that it’s starting to sound like a good idea every minute.

* * *

So when’s the last time you had your carpet cleaned?

Moving Tips to Help You Keep Organized

Moving is one of the most stressful things a person can do in life. Stay organized before, after, and along the way can make things much easier for yourself and your family, and even reduce stress.

 

 

 

Top Video Tips

  • Create a map for the movers that shows where they go
  • Put furniture directly in the room it is going to stay in
  • Color code boxes by your own system, or label the boxes by room
  • Unpack only one box at a time
  • Line boxes up against the wall in the room they go in, and have them facing the same direction so you can see the label of what is in each box
  • Know which room should be unpacked first (i.e kitchen and bathroom)
  • Pack appropriately – don’t over or under pack
  • Schedule in advance the time it is going to take you to pack and un pack; do rooms in order of importance
  • Don’t try to do too much at once; don’t be overwhelmed, you are on a set and planned schedule
  • Work together in an assembly line; make sure everyone knows their responsibilities

Tree Cutting Tips and Techniques

Cutting down a tree can be dangerous, especially when a tree has lived for dozens of years. Hiring a professional tree cutter is the safest means of tree removal but if you choose to do the deed yourself, the following tips will help you take down a tree more smoothly.

Before you begin, there are a few pieces of equipment you will need to get the job done right.

#1. Safety First: Grab yourself a pair of handy dandy safety glasses to keep your eyes protected from the line of fire and while you’re at it, grab some leg protectors or a pair of sturdy work boots. Sometimes, chainsaws can run into knots in a tree which cause them to come out of the tree and into your leg so you want to keep protected.

#2. Chainsaw: A chainsaw will be your most important tool, and should have a horsepower of at least 3.5 and a 20 inch bar. The bar is an indication of how deep the blade can penetrate, and 20 inches is generally enough for cutting down most trees.

#3. Test Rope: The final tool you need to acquire is a 1,000 lb rope to be used as a safety backup in case there are any problems.

Tree Cutting Tips & Precautions

We can’t say it enough – tree cutting is a dangerous job, and one that is recommended to be handled by a professional. It’s certainly not impossible to do the task yourself, but it will require a little bit of knowledge and understanding before beginning.

Some safety tips you want to keep in consideration:

  • If you have finished cutting a tree and it fails to fall, don’t walk up to it with your chainsaw as the tree is under massive pressure. Instead, use your rope to pull the tree carefully. Always put your safety first.
  • Never stand directly behind a tree as well. You never know when the stump could snap, and send the tree falling backwards.
  • Always check your gear before you begin working, to make sure that it is in proper working order.
  • Don’t cut down a tree on your own. At least make sure there will be one other person around.
  • Perform a thorough assessment of the surrounding areas of the tree to make sure there isn’t a chance that it will fall on a house, car, or any other valuable assets.

Safe Tree Cutting Techniques

1.) Evaluate how tall the tree actually is, and determine the best direction that it should fall keeping the height in consideration.

2.) Clear the area you plan for the tree to fall in so that nothing gets damaged in the process. Cut a v-shape into the tree on the side that you want it to fall. This “v” should be shallow, knee-height, and cut to the center of the tree to look like an actual v.

3.) When tying your rope to the tree before you start trimming, make sure you attach it to the middle or the area slightly above the middle.

4.) Move to the opposite side of the tree and slowly cut until it reach your “v”.

5.) When the tree begins to fall, move away as quickly as possible at a 45 degree angle. If the tree gets stuck on another tree or doesn’t fall over completely, carefully pull on the rope until it does. This is where it’s best to have other people help you, as there are more people to watch the tree’s progress from different angles.

5 Important Practices to Follow When Painting Your Own Roof

Painting your roof is a tremendous way to add value to your home, no matter what type of material it is made of. Doing the job yourself doesn’t have to be expensive, but can come with some issues of safety that you may not want to find yourself dealing with.

If you are up to the challenge, we have laid out a list of measures to consider for your safety and getting the job done as efficiently as possible. Prepare yourself with these practices before taking on the challenge. If they appear to be too risky they probably are so, use your best judgement when making the final decision.

1. Begin by Cleaning

To give your roof the best looking paint coating, clean the roof to ensure that you rid all debris and stains. A high pressure washer is the best way to clean a corrugated roof, but a hosepipe and broom and work as well. Sweeping tends to work better for titled roof as it can clean more effectively between the lines.

There are many chemicals available for cleaning a roof, and best used by the instructions on the label seeing as they all work differently.

2. Roof Evaluation

The next step before painting a tile roof is to make sure that there are no broken tile, missing ones, or any that need to be replaced. For corrugated roofing, make sure to do a pre-clean by washing it with degreaser. If you have any replacement sheets or an unpainted roof, prepare the surface of the roof with the primer and make sure it is dry before you begin painting.

3. Paint Selection

When choosing a color for your paint, take into consideration that lighter colors with reflect heat, and darker colors will absorb it which can cause it to wear away faster. Buy just enough paint for two coats, and measure how much you will need by calculating the area of your roof.

4. Painting Process

Tiled roofs can be painted the easiest by using an airless spray gun or paint brush. If your roof has lost most of it’s color already, you should consider applying a thick coat of sealer first, and use water based paint.

For corrugated roofing, you want to use paint that is specifically designed for metal roofs, as it adheres better and holds up against the elements over time. Painted rollers shaped like corrugated iron are the most ideal for painting but if you are looking to get the job done faster, airless spray guns are the way to go.

5. Painting Tips

Think of the bigger picture when painting your roof, and start with the areas at the top to prevent having to walk on the paint.

The most optimal weather conditions for painting are not when it’s hot, windy, or there’s a possible chance of rain, so always be sure to keep an eye on the weather. You also want to start as early as possible to you don’t have to rush to get the job done. Safety should always come first.

*** Practice Maximum Roof Safety *** 

Roofs can be dangerous places, so you should never work on one alone in case something were to happen. This is especially important for those that haven’t spent much time working on a roof. Wearing safety gear can help out a lot, which includes work boots, a hardhat or helmet, and safety glasses/goggles, and most importantly, a safety harness.

On top of all these important thing weighs one more, which is the ladder. You should always double check to make sure that your ladder is in a sturdy position on a solid level. For maximum safety, test the balance of the ladder before climbing up or down.

Is Your Roof Getting the Ventilation That It Needs?

There’s no better time to check the ventilation in your home than when you are already hiring a professional to perform a roof maintenance check on your home.

Ventilation has changed a lot over the years, and many homes today still have the same systems in place as homes did decades ago, which is why it’s important that you see how updated yours is. The job of a ventilation system is to make sure your attic isn’t too hot or too moist. This can cause great damage to your home and other unwanted problems including mold, condensation, higher energy bills, rotting wood, shortened shingle life, and more.

A properly working ventilation system is balanced, meaning the intake at the eave should be equal to the exhaust at the ridge. This allows there to be an even flow of air to keep the roof deck and attic in the best shape possible.

 If you aren’t sure what type of ventilation system you have or what kind of shape your current one is in, it’s a good idea to call a professional to come out and make an assessment. Not only will this educate you more on your home, but it allows you to see how well your ventilation system is doing, and how far along you are until it can be expected that you replace or maintain it.

As mentioned above, many houses these days still have older systems that may no longer be sufficient enough to handle the changes in the weather. An older system could also mean that you will soon need a replacement so again, it’s always a good idea to get it checked out so you can be more in the know of what’s taking place in your home.

It’s also important to note that bad ventilation can avoid any warranties you have, not to mention it can shorten the life of your roof.

Better safe than sorry is what we always say. It may seem like a pain now to have all of these things checked out, but it can end up saving a ton of time and money in the long run.

5 Green Cleaning Combos for Your Kitchen

We all love a clean home. From the smell to the simple feeling of your home being fresh and clean, it’s a great feeling to have. But like we talked about in one of our last posts, most home cleaning products contain harmful substances that could be damaging to the health of everyone in your home.

Many people don’t consider this because these well-known cleaning products are cheap and just plain easier to obtain. But what is it worth to breathe in these cleaners for years?

Green cleaning is an optimal solution that can can cost pennies on the dollar, and give you a more genuine and natural feeling of clean. When it comes to your kitchen where all of your food is prepared and consumed, you certainly want a safe and optimal clean. In this article, we are going to share 6 tips with you to leave you with a refreshing sensation that is actually safe to enjoy.

These tips come straight to us from a dear friend that owns a professional cleaning business, and a well trusted source. Our friend Sam, has been in the business for 40 years and is like a walking dictionary for anyone looking for effective cleaning solutions.

1.) Let’s start with the fridge. If your refrigerator smells or contains a lot of leftovers, consider using a lemon rind with baking soda. Scoop out the inside of the lemon (don’t worry you don’t have to waste it; instead put it in your garbage disposal for a fresh clean and smell) and add some baking soda. The baking soda will absorb the smell while the lemon leaves behind a fresh scent and continue to keep your fridge smelling great.

2.) Speaking of your drain, it can get backed up from time to time without proper cleaning and disposed items being left behind. Instead of calling a plumber, try pouring hot water mixed with baking soda and a half a cup of white vinegar down your drain. Be sure to stay back a little, as this mixture should cause a large and fizzy reaction. Just make sure to not use too much baking soda and this could cause a large explosion you won’t want to handle. Remember making the erupting volcanoes in school? Yeah, it would be like that.

3.) Do the taps of your sink faucet have limescale on them? Regularly cleaning your faucets with a small amount of acidic vinegar should prevent this limescale from revisiting over and over again.

4.) The more you use surface cleaners, the more chances you have of breathing in the toxic chemicals they contain. Using a lemon for a surface cleaner kills bacteria and is a great way to cut through grease and other grime, not to mention leave a strong smell of clean.

5.) Over time, build up can occur on the tops of your counters. Dust and grease can get settled in from regular cooking over time, but can be tackled with a simple household product know as dish soap. Create a thick layer of dish soap and apply it to the affected areas, leaving it on for 10-20 minutes. Rinse well with a sponge or dishcloth and dab to try with a cotton towel.

With these five tips, your kitchen can take on an entirely new feeling of clean. After applying them for yourself you will never want to buy store bought cleaning products again, and continue to make your own for years to come.

What kind of green cleaning products have you tried to make your home and safer and more natural place?

How To Handle a Septic Tank Emergency During Moving Time

It’s bad enough if your septic tank decides to break on you at all, but during moving time? Come on! Like there’s not already enough stress that comes along with moving anyway!

This isn’t the most common situation, but it has been known to happen to a few unlucky people.

This article will be here if you need it, and can help solve your septic disaster with as little added stress as possible; even if you aren’t in such a drastic need for a septic tank service.

Here are 4 Tips to Consider When a Septic Tank Services Becomes Necessary

1.) Calm down and take a deep breath

A broken septic tank can cause a big mess, and you are probably nowhere near qualified to tackle the situation on your own. Not that you would probably want to do it anywhere, amiright?

2.) Call a local septic tank company to come out to your home

This may sound super obvious, but not all companies that claim to be septic tank repair experts, ARE NOT in fact experts. Septic repair can be a big job and requires the proper knowledge, permits, and care of the surrounding environment.

The last thing you need before you move out of your home is to hire a shady septic service that leaves a giant mess on your lawn. “Ain’t nobody got time for that.”

3.) Do your research first

You know you need to call a septic company, but don’t know how to tell who does the best job at a reasonable rate. You’re already spending money on movers more than likely, so the last thing you probably need is another huge bill along the way.

Use the internet to check all of the companies in the areas reviews on popular third-party review websites like Google, Yelp, Yahoo, Bing, and even Facebook. These can say a lot about a company not to mention, you get to see the levels of satisfaction of their previous and even most recent customers.

4.) Make Your You’re Getting the Best Rate

Some companies sometimes charge more than others in the area because they don’t have the same volume of business, therefore, they have to make up for it with their prices.

If you really want the best deal on the price you pay for your septic tank repair service, then your best bet is to call all of the companies in the area before deciding one to officially go with.

Final Steps for Your Septic Needs

No one wants to half to think about what’s wrong with their septic tank, so it’s always a good idea to just give a professional a call so save time, and possibly more money.

And who knows? Maybe the problem will just be that you need a septic tank pumping rather than repair.

That would certainly save you a lot more time, money, and overall trouble.

 

Image Credit: www.cheapmovingcompanies.co