Tricky Home Improvement Projects

As homeowners, we have all gotten in over our heads and found ourselves overwhelmed by those tricky home repairs and improvement projects. Deciding we are fully capable of accomplishing a project, we often find ourselves wishing we had hired more capable hands. Contractors are skilled and experienced in their respective fields and are always on hand to provide excellent service to those in need.

Home improvement is often riddled with unforeseen problems that an inexperienced homeowner cannot anticipate. Contractors, with their abundance of experience, can often anticipate problems before they occur and find solutions to any problem that may arise. This is the difference that many homeowners do not consider before making the decision of whether or not to hire a professional.

With a great deal of problems that may arise, more complex projects such as home exterior painting should always be left to professional contractors. Sometimes, a homeowner will be skilled and experienced in a certain field, such as home painting, and in these cases, doing the work oneself may prove to be a better option. However, these skilled homeowners are few and far between, so for the majority of you homeowners, hiring a professional to do the home improvement work on your house will pay dividends in the end. Not only will the project look much better upon completion, but having a professional do the work will allow you to relax and trust that your project is in excellent hands. With so much experience and training in the field, contractors are valuable assets to any project.

Know the Pros and Cons of Having Aluminium Curtain Walling

Are you planning to give your premise or business a completely new sphere? Are you thinking of using aluminium as your strong base for the wall?

From Perforated roller shutters to solid shutters, there are various options that are in accordance with the need of an individual.

Aluminium curtain walling has emerged as a popular choice amongst the business houses, as not only it gives any business a new edge but a chance for people to admire its elegance.

Aluminium curtain walling is an outer structure that protects the building frame. It generally is build up of materials like glass and aluminium frames.

If you are planning to start construction of your building and are searching for the best options for protection, then down below are few advantages and disadvantages listed of curtain walls.

Weighing all advantages of Curtain walls

Lighting and elegance

The combination of aluminium frames and glass material together makes it a very classy option to use, also allows the abundance of daylight to walk in, thus leading to less use of power consumption during the daytime.

No UV rays

UV – the ultraviolet rays are very harmful to any skin, as they can cause severe disease in long run. It is necessary to opt for a material that is very friendly in terms of harmful rays. The design of the wall confirms the 99% reduction of harmful and toxic UV rays to the human bodies.

Wind resistant

The structure of the wall is very efficient in keeping away the wind and forces that are acting against the building.

Fire extinguisher

The design of the wall is very helpful in preventing the fire from spreading floor to floor.

Disadvantages of curtain walls

Great Cost and time

These walls are very ineffective in terms of cost and time management. The Huge cost is involved while shipping the material and storing them. The time taken to complete the structure is very long too.

Replacement of sealant

To keep the wind and moisture at vicinity, a sealant is applied to the perimeter of the structure. The sealant needs to be replaced after every 10 years or so.

Peculiar Cleaning

These walls require huge cleaning and maintenance on an everyday basis. As aluminium frames are generally painted or are anodized. It is necessary to make sure that the cleaning near the anodized parts is done very carefully, as cleaning supplies or detergent can clear off the coating from such frames or material.

From curtain walling to perforated roller shutters, there are various options in the market that are very responsive and advanced towards the styling and security of any venture.

Quick Home Maintenance Tips

If you have been looking for some home improvement tips that won’t take more than a few minutes from your precious time, you are on the right page. This article is for you, especially if you are a busy homeowner. Read on.

Fixing a chair

Are you trying to fix an old chair? If so, we suggest drilling pilot holes and driving screws via the rungs bottom and into the chair legs.

Vinyl Door or Window

If your vinyl doors or windows don’t open properly, the channels may have accumulated gunk. At times, even clean doors and windows may bind. You may spray dry spray lubricant on the target areas and then use a rag to wipe it off. Using oil lubricants is not a good idea as they can catch dirt damaging the vinyl.

Repairing a Shutoff Valve

If the shutoff value is faulty, you can get it replaced. But if you can’t, you should go to the nearby hardware store to buy a good replacement washer. Remove the grit from the valve and fit the new washer. This will fix the problem.

Loose Showerhead

If you want to fix a problematic showerhead or a wobbly pipe, you can use some expanding foam. With the foam, you can encase the pipe and fix it. This will remove the wobble.

Use a Smoke Detector

If you don’t have enough time or money, you may want to cover the ceiling hole with a smoke detector. You don’t need to patch the hole.

Cabinet doors

If your cabinet doors don’t stay shut, all you have to do is use a magnetic door catch. You can also go for a roller-style one.

Squeaky Floors

If you want to repair a squeaky floor, use a stud finder to find the floor joists. Next, you can drive in a screw via a pad, carpet and the subfloor to reach the floor joist. Just make sure that the upper part of the screw has no threads. Ideally, you may want to use trim screws since they have bigger heads. If this is the case, you may want to pull up the screw and then tighten it again.

Remove Water Stains

Before repainting the ceiling, you may want to try out this trick. You can use a mixture of water and bleach and then wait for a few days. If the stain is old, you can try a mold and mildew product. The stain will be gone within 24 hours. This trick may work both on textured and flat ceilings.

Wallpaper Seams

To fix a wallpaper seam, you can soak a rag in lukewarm water and then apply the paste around the seam. You may want to hold the rag for a couple of minutes and then open the seam a bit for more space for the seam sealer. Put the liquid into the gap and then push the paper against the wall using a roller. Then you can use a sponge to remove the sealer.

So, these are some quick and easy home improvement tips.

Water Damage Mold

The first thing created after water damage in a house is the mold. Mold creates a number of problems for the home owner. Fungi are common in nature and serve a central role as breakdown agents for organic matter. They contain fragments, or spores, which are found in virtually every home and building. Major mold that is found in water damaged homes is called Stachybotrys chartarum (atra), more commonly known as SC. It is a greenish black fungus that grows on materials like fiberboard, gypsum board, paper, dust, and lint. They become chronically moist or water damaged due to excessive humidity, condensation, and flooding.

SC was first noted as a disease when it contaminated cereal grains. When people ate that grain, they started feeling burning sensations in their mouth, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and pain in their abdomen. Then it was found that if its pores are released into air, then there was more probability of developing these symptoms. Few reports of scientific literature stated that there were places where people had to leave the place due to spreading of molds like SC and other molds too. When the spores are released into air, they may be inhaled and can get into lungs causing severe airborne diseases.

To save houses and buildings from mold, some precautions need to be taken. Buildings should be inspected routinely for evidence of water damage and visible mold. Conditions causing mold such as water leaks, condensation, or flooding should be corrected. After water damage, books and papers should be immediately discarded. Water from the carpets and rugs should be immediately removed. Ceiling tiles, if damaged, should be removed and replaced. Remove the water from upholstered furniture with the help of water extraction vacuum. Remove moisture immediately and use dehumidifiers and fans for drying.

For the removal of mold, the simplest and most expedient remediation should be used. After cleaning, try to ensure that there are no such conditions again for these hazardous materials to grow. A professional restoration company should be called to fix or repair any problems.

3 Reasons to Love Glass Stairs

It’s not hard to see why glass staircases, in particular glazed side panels, have become so popular in recent times. As new-build houses seem to get smaller and smaller, and rising prices force many buyers to settle for modestly sized properties, home owners are finding creative ways to make the best of what space they have.

Using glass instead of wood or metal in your stair banisters can bring several benefits:

Light

The hallway is often the darkest part of the house, which isn’t ideal for making a good first impression on visitors. A traditional staircase balustrade, consisting of a handrail and base rail connected by wooden or metal spindles (also called balusters), will contribute to the gloom by blocking precious natural light. Using glass panels as the banister infill will instantly brighten the room by encouraging light to flow more freely.

Space

It’s amazing the way glass can make a room feel so much bigger. A transparent balustrade offers little or no barrier to the eye, increasing the sense of space. This is particularly useful for staircases situated in a living or dining room, as clear panels make the structure seem less obtrusive.

Style

Glass is much favoured by interior designers at the moment, and will suit almost any age of property. It can improve the look and feel of a modern house, boosting its contemporary credentials and bringing it bang up to date. At the other end of the age scale, glass can offer an interesting twist to a period home. A dark cottage with beamed ceilings and small windows, for example, can be brightened up and made more appealing by replacing solid wooden balusters with light-enhancing glass panels.

Which type of glass should you choose?

Good quality glazed panels should be made from toughened safety glass at least 8mm, and ideally 10mm, thick. Large single panels will create the most impact and allow maximum light flow. These normally have to be made to measure, so be prepared to wait a bit longer and pay a bit more than for standard sizes. Installation can be complicated, and is best left to professionals. Small panels are less showy, but more versatile and often the best choice for awkward layouts. They can also be combined with wooden or metal spindles if desired.

How is the glass fitted?

Depending on the staircase design and personal taste, you can usually choose whether to fix the panels to the balustrade with metal clamps (either at the top and bottom or at each side) or slot them into pre-cut grooves in the handrail and base rail. It is sometimes also possible to attach the panels to the handrail only, without using a base rail, so that the glass is suspended just above the steps. From an aesthetic point of view, fitting the panels directly into the wooden banisters results in a cleaner outline, but some people prefer the contemporary look of shiny metal clamps, or brackets. These are most often found in a chrome or brushed nickel finish. You can also use stainless steel discs if you’re after a particularly striking design.

Which handrail?

Wooden handrails are the most popular, and the most comfortable to use. A low profile (small and narrow) style will produce the most streamlined, modern effect, whereas a chunkier design may be more suitable for period properties. Metal handrails go well with glass for a contemporary look, and can be attached using brackets or grooves.

What about other glass stair parts?

Treads and risers are both available in glass. Treads can be made in a variety of thicknesses, usually between 20mm and 40mm. The glass should be toughened and laminated for extra strength, and include a non-slip finish. Glass risers are growing in popularity too. They can be fitted to the back of glazed treads or, more unusually, to wooden ones. This is guaranteed to produce the wow factor, letting light shine through the steps while keeping the safety benefits of a closed tread staircase.

Summing up

When it comes to creating a light and airy feel in your home, glass stairs are ideal – and the panels are available in such a wide variety of shapes and sizes that there’s a good chance of finding something to suit your particular circumstances. Just keep a cloth handy after installation, as smudges and fingerprints could spoil the impact of your stunning new staircase.

The Benefits of Building a House Extension

One of the big issues generated when the children are growing up, and new members are included in the family, is how the space will be enough for them. Precisely for that reason, a lot of people start considering what to do in order to find solution for the problem. For example, some of them buy a new house or apartment, while others begin to think how to extend the current house. To be frank, I do not know the answer of this kind of problem but at least I can help by providing the benefits of the house extension.

It is well known that the market of houses is quite expensive. So in this sense I would like to say that this is the biggest benefit of the building of a house extension, the money you will save. There are other factors, which are also beneficial but this is the most important. Moreover, everyone searches for cheap and affordable solution of any problematic issue. Hence, it seems that the generated extra space of the house will be the best manner to accomplish such aim. As a matter of fact, I can say this in other way. It isn’t worth it to purchase a new property with two or three more rooms only because there is a lack of space, especially when you have chance to have them with less spent means. As a consequence, you and your family will have the necessary rooms with many other pluses.

Other merit of the building a house extension is the fact that you will be in your home. Everyone loves to spend his or her whole life in the birthplace. This is a dream for everyone, so when there is an opportunity for that to be done, we need to catch it. What is more, if you move in a place somewhere else you will encounter many problems. For instance, you need to move all your stuff. Probably, there will be a need of changing the schools of your children as well as their itinerary to the schools. Another bad thing is that you are supposed to have new friends and neighbors, something unnecessary if you extend the house. The route to your work will be different too. Hence, if you want to omit those obstacles, the best way is to make your home bigger.

When you extend your house, you will have supplementary space only for you. However, this is not as important as the next advantage of that to have extended house. To stop beating against the bush I will say that you are supposed to have bigger value of the house price.

Ideas for Home Improvement

Most of the people take on a home improvement project to increase the value of their home. By adding new features to your home or doing a repaint can really increase its value of your home. However, there are also a lot of people who decide to work on the repairs or remodeling of their home if they haven’t gone through for their home renovations for.

There are so many ideas for home improvement that could be carried out to increase the value of your home while making it more attractive. Putting these ideas into action will makes your home more livable, enhancing the comfort you experience daily.

There are many home improvement projects like kitchen remodeling, bathroom remodeling and window replacement that have been using as the main aspects of home improvement. You can implement numerous ideas to make your home more good looking and comfortable.

Kitchen is a good place to start when considering a home improvement project. The good start would be to make your kitchen to have a new and shiny look. The biggest problem here is the kitchen cabinets. To get around this, you can either rebuild with new cabinets or reface the existing ones.

Another idea for home improvement work from your kitchen would be to change the kitchen floor. Kitchen flooring can make a huge difference in the general form of cuisine. There are many options for you to choose from, you can either use hardwood floors, ceramic and stone tiles or you can use laminate, which is a relatively new but increasingly popular option.

Bathroom is another prime area of the house when it comes to home improvement. If you decide to put your house on the market, a bathroom is one place that could easily put a potential buyer. So directing some attention that way can only be an advantage.

When it comes to the bathroom, there are some home improvement ideas that can be applied. Here, the change bar can be just what your bathroom needs a more modern look. Adding panels or changing the one that is already there could give the bathroom a more finished look. You may want to change a bathroom or add another one, there are only so many things you can do to give added beauty to the bathroom and make it more upscale.

Changing your windows, sliding windows, picture windows, bay windows or any of a variety of window styles are available may also be important for the appearance of your home.

New Home Improvement Products Can Create Big Problems For Homeowners

I rarely buy new products that guarantee instant success for home repairs anymore. To be honest with you, I probably purchased over 50 of these items, before finally getting disgusted with myself for wasting so much money on these miserable products.

I’m not about to tell you what types of products these were, I’m just here to get you in the right mind, before you purchase any more of them yourself. If you’re looking at a product that guarantees some sort of plumbing pipe repair, find out if it has any type of guarantee. Can this item be returned if it doesn’t work?

Even if this item works temporarily, will the company who guaranteed it, cover and additional home repair expenses if this product fails in the future? For example, you fix a bathroom water supply pipe and everything looks great, but you leave for work one day, and when you come home half of your house is flooded.

I think you’re starting to get the point here, you purchase these products and they either work or they don’t. It’s like gambling at your local casino. They are painting you an illusion of winning large fortunes, but rarely deliver the product.

Whenever I walk into my local lumber yard, hardware store, home improvement center or large retail department stores, I see these products all over the place. I make jokes to myself and anyone around, but at the same time, I realize that these products wouldn’t be here if they didn’t sell.

I’m just trying to get you to think, before making some of these purchases. There are some products that give you a false illusion and you need to be aware of them.

Dealing With Calcimine Coated Ceiling

Out here in New England we have older homes that in the earlier days used lead paint or had lead mixed in with the oil paints. One of the biggest problems was “Calcimine” ceilings. Definition: cal·ci·mine also kal·so·mine n. A white or tinted liquid containing zinc oxide, water, glue, and coloring matter, used as a wash for walls and ceilings.

At first glance, the ceilings look like ordinary latex or oil painted ceilings when in fact calcimine is acidic and if coated over with standard latex or oil based paint with fail almost immediately. One way to determine if your ceilings are calcimine is to check the underside of a paint chip. If it is chalky more than likely, it is calcimine.

Trying to scrape and “skim coat” (When you use joint compound to cover the cracks and defects caused by a failed coating) you will notice the joint compound starting to bubble. The acid in the calcimine is breaking down the joint compound. The best way to approach this is to scrape as much as the loose ceiling as possible. Then seal the original ceiling (as is) before repairing.

There are products out there that deal with calcimine directly. One such product is “Cal- Cote” I have used this product many times. A heavy coating will seal the ceiling and give you a surface to work with. Therefore, you can start skim coating and repairing all the defects after the Cal-Cote is dry. (Typically allow it to dry over night.)

After you have applied the skim coat to the ceiling you will need to allow the compound ample time to cure. Depending on conditions, (How humid is it?) I would allow the joint compound over night also. Then when sufficiently cured you can sand (wearing a mask and goggles) to achieve a smooth finish.

When all sanded, apply another coat of Cal-Cote and your ceiling should last quite a long time. One other thing, Cal-Cote is a very thick product. Unlike a latex or oil, based paint, which will typically cover 300 sq feet per gallon, expect to get about 200 sq per gallon. Following these steps will help in fixing those old calcimine ceilings. You can always ask your local paint store what type of product they carry and the coverage rate of that particular product.

Home Improvement is Not For Everybody

Fixing up the house can be a tricky matter that many homeowners are not up to. Hiring some outside help is often the best thing for these larger, complicated matters that require professionalism to ensure they are done correctly. Keeping things simple and planning everything as much as possible is the best way to make sure that things are completed on time and in the most efficient way.

Moving through home improvement projects as quickly as possible is a priority for many homeowners. Nobody likes his or her yard to be in disarray for too long, so ensuring that everything get done without delay is very important. Avoiding problems and mishaps is the best way to ensure that everything runs according to plan. Incidentally, making sure that everything is planned out perfectly is another key in meeting deadlines the homeowners may set for themselves. Hiring a contractor for the larger, more complicated home improvement projects is often the best way to avoid these costly delays.

When things run smoothly, everything will fall into place. The homeowner will be happy with the work being done. The work will be done on time. The final product will be as the homeowner expected or planned and everybody will be happy. Ensuring that this is the case with each and every home improvement project is a struggle for many homeowners that choose to go at it alone. That is why hiring a professional to help with the more complex projects is the best way to ensure things are done properly.