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How To Prevent Water Damage From Washing Machines

Water leaks from washing machines are among the biggest causes of water damage to houses. Here are some great tips for avoiding the common problems caused by leaking washing machines inside of homes.

The main cause of loss is s failure of the water supply. Inspections of cold and hot supply lines to washing machines should be conducted on monthly basis.

- Check for signs on the supply hose that it may be getting close to fail. Blisters in hose, stress cracks, loose connections and worn tubing are some common signs.

- If supply hose shows any signs of wear, replace it with reinforced steel braided hose. - If the connection feels loose, tighten it. The most common place of failure is close to the connection at which a hose bends. - The supply hoses should be replaced after 5 years, even in case there are no obvious signs of wear or deterioration. There might be some deterioration signs in the inside out part and you might not be able to see them until the damage has already happened. When replacing the supply hose of a washing machine, always go for the reinforced steel braided hose instead of the un-reinforced hose made from rubber. The steel braided hoses are more durable and they are much less likely to cause water damage.

You can reduce the chances of failure even further by turning off the valves of cold and hot water supply when the washing machine isn't in use. In case you are going away for few days, make sure to turn off the valves. Operating a screw type valve is difficult and it can develop leaks around the shaft. In case a valve is leaking or it isn't operating properly, you should immediately replace it by installing a dual ball valve lever which offers a much better solution. It can make it easier for you to shut off the water supply. It is easier to operate this kind of valve compared to the traditionally used gate valve as it can turn on both the supply of cold and the supply of hot water with a single lever.

In order to minimize the risks of other types of water losses related to washing machines, you should follow the instructions of manufacturer:

- Never overload washing machine.

- Try operating the washing machine when someone is at home. - Always use the detergent that has been designed for the types of use.

Facts about Washing Machine Failure

The following are some facts revealed by a multi-region and multi-company study of the insurance claims related to water damage, made by homeowners:

- Failures related to washing machines are among the top ten sources of water damage in residential areas.

- The cost of these failures is $5,308 per incident on average after deductible is paid. - The supply hose failures account for 50% of all losses related to washing machines. - Out of all the failures of water supply hoses that result in claims of water loss, about 78% involve the machines that are built less than eleven years ago. And out of these failures, about 54% occur in the washing machines that are built 8 to 10 years ago. - About 6 percent of all the washing machine related failures happened in unoccupied homes. The failures that happen in the unoccupied homes result in the claims that are about 2 times more serious than the ones that occur in the occupied homes.

Simple Home Improvement Tips To Rejuvenate Your Home

Does your house need to be renovated in various ways? Or are you thinking about adding an expansion, like a patio? Do you want some of your furniture to save energy for you? If so, this article contains many helpful tips that can answer some of your questions and get you started in the right direction to a successful home improvement project.

Be sure to consider the type of material you plan to use before building an addition to your home. Using wood may increase your insurance premiums because of the added risk of fire. Steel and concrete are more durable and fire-resistant, so choosing one of these options can help keep your annual insurance premiums low.

Before beginning home improvements apply for the appropriate building permits. Any home improvement that involves plumbing, electricity, or structural changes can require a permit. Check your local laws. If you proceed without a permit then you can be fined or it could make the house harder to sell in the future.

Install a lazy Susan in those odd corner cabinets. It can be difficult to properly use the storage space they provide, if you have to get down on your hands and knees to search for the items in the back corners. A lazy Susan will allow you to reach your items easily every time.

Choosing to use wooden flooring instead of carpeting can save you a lot of hassle in the long run. Carpet can contain allergens and cleaning it is sometimes out of the question. The cost of ripping up and replacing your carpet can almost be as costly as just putting down wooden flooring. Wooden floors can be refinished and repainted as needed; also providing a more rural and cottage style environment.

Remove a door from its frame without taking out the screws in the hinges. Need to take out a door so you can move a big piece of furniture? All you have to do is drive a nail through the bottom of the barrel of the hinge so the pin slides out of the top. Do that on both hinges and the door is free! You can also choose to have your doors be fixed and be efficient at the same time. Window Companies Utah offers solar windows and doors which will help you save energy and increase efficiency of your home!

Poke holes in your wall paper bubbles! Sometimes bubbles form when you are hanging wallpaper and you don't notice them until it's too late to pull the paper back and correct them. All is not lost! Just use a pin to pierce each bubble then carefully flatten it out against the wall.

A finished basement is an investment that never stops giving back. This extra room created is great for your family right now, and it will certainly stand out as a great feature for any family wishing to purchase your home in the future. You can get what you need at a discount store. Often, people say that the value of your home may go up thirty percent by finishing the basement.

A home improvement project can be fun to do, but it also can be very practical. Taking care of your house is something you should take seriously, and renovating older, worn out sections can make all the difference when you're planning to sell it for a higher price. These tips can help you save time and money and make the best decision for your home.

Different Types Of Lawn Grass

There are many types of lawn grasses which can give your lawn a different look. The grass you choose will depend on the climatic conditions and the nearby surroundings. There are three major types of lawn grasses: cool season lawn grasses, warm season lawn grasses, and typical transition zone grasses.

Cool season grasses do well in areas experiencing cold winters or warm summers. Places with such climatic conditions usually have regular rains which are good for cool seasons grass growth.

Warm season grasses, on the other hand, are mostly grown in the southern part of the US. They mostly turn into a brown color when the cool temperature begins.

Typical transition grasses are usually in transition zones lying between the northern and southern turf grass regions.

For cool season grasses, you can mostly find Bluegrass and Bent grass. Bluegrass does not require many efforts in maintenance and mowing. This type of lawn grass can be used in homes and in sports areas. They grow densely and have a bright green appearance making them even more beautiful. Bent grass is a type of grass is dark green colored and grows densely. This is what makes it one of the most beautiful lawn grasses.

For warm-season lawn grasses, you can look for Bahia grass, Carpet grass, Bermuda grass and Centipede grass.Bahia grass can live up to one summer season. It requires a medium level of mowing and maintenance meaning that you will have to spend too much energy on mowing and maintenance. They are also resistant to diseases and insects compared to other types of lawn grasses. Some of the most popular types of Bahia grass include Pensacola and Argentine.

Carpet grass grows well in moist poor soil not suitable for other types of grasses. They cannot do well in dry conditions as they have shallow roots. Bermuda grass does not require much mowing meaning it requires less maintenance. With the help of seeds, they can grow very easily. Centipede grass is a type of lawn grass can either be light or medium green in color. They have thick turf type and require less maintenance.

Lastly, typical transition zone grasses are mostly called Thermal Blue, Tall Fescue and Perennial Ryegrass. Thermal blue combines the features of Kentucky bluegrass and turf-type tall fescue. It is suitable for both hot and shady environment. It is resistant to diseases like brown patch.

Tall Fescue grows well during the spring and fall seasons. It is good for shady sites and high traffic lawns in homes. The perennial ryegrass germinates quickly and requires constant watering especially during spring and the early summers. It grows well in cool and moist climatic conditions.

If you are unsure whcih type of grass you need for your lawn then you can contact your local landscaping company like Sprinkler Bros who can help you with all your needs.

Advantages Of Steel In Home And Commercial Buildings

It seems appropriate that the hero Superman was dubbed as the Man of Steel because steel is known for its strength. This is just one of the many characteristics of steel that makes it an ideal and even a sought after material in the construction industry. Most designers and builders today choose steel for the following reasons:

Steel is a reliable and predictable building material. Because the steel components are manufactured and fabricated under strict monitoring in a controlled environment, one can be assured of its excellent quality than concrete. Also, the strength of steel products are already tested during production whereas for concrete, its strength can be confirmed when the material is already in place within the structure.

Because it is possible to build slender columns with steel, floor space can be maximized and a longer span is possible. This would leave free spaces to allow integration of HVAC (Heat, Ventilation and Air Conditioning) systems into the structure making possible the reduction of floor-to-floor heights.

Steel is sustainable. The use of steel in building constructions conserves our forest reserves since there is no need to cut down trees for lumber and our water reserve. The only water used is the make-up water added in the recycling process. Yes, steel is recyclable. This means that there is a minimal amount of waste materials in building constructions.

Not only is steel recyclable but is also modifiable. If there is a need in the future for a building made up of steel to improve loading conditions, vertical expansions or renovate as desired by its owner, it steel structure can be modified.

Since steel is prefabricated in a controlled environment, its production is not obstructed by weather conditions unlike in field placed materials. This allows speed of construction productivity.

Architects are particularly excited with the use of steel for its aesthetic appeal. The versatility of steel gives architects more freedom of expression in their design of steel structures. With the use of steel, they can emphasize the natural beauty of the material in slender but strong transparent frames. They can also use colored coatings for highlighting and effect. Steel can also be bent or rolled so as to create shapes and non linear structures for more aesthetic effects. They can create even their most ambitious projects with the use of steel.

Finally, prefabricated steel remains the most cost-effective solution to building constructions as compared to concrete and lumber plus with steel, owners need not be bothered with maintenance and termite infestation.

Learn How To Spruce Up Your Home

Have you heard the many horror stories of what can happen during home renovations or repairs? If these people would have properly researched the process of home improvement, they likely would not have had the negative experiences. This article will give you some great advice on home repair. Some are tips from Awning Utah South Jordan.

Use energy efficient appliances when remodeling or building a new home. The utility costs can add up quickly if you aren't using efficient appliances. You can find the rating of any machine you are purchasing on the tag. It will tell you the cost of using it over a year and over it's lifetime.

Not every home improvement project has to be a major overhaul or a major expense; there are a number of quick and easy updates you can make at a reasonable cost to add value and appeal to your home. Start with paint. Paint your walls, your cabinets, your trim or your doors. You can even paint your stove or floor tiles with specialty paint designed for that purpose. Increase storage space by installing closet or pantry organizers. Replace boring kitchen cabinet knobs with ones that are unique and decorative. While you're at it, do the same with your plain white wall plates. Enhance your new paint job with fresh, bright curtains and sheers. Rent a floor buffer, and buff and wax your hardwood floors. A little cash and a dash of creativity can result in some dramatic changes.

If you are taking on your project alone, consider hiring a interior designer for a consultation. An hour with a professional can help clarify what you want to do and help steer you away from those projects that sound good in your head but would be a nightmare to complete.

Remodel your closet by using closet organizer kits. These kits are designed to maximize usable space in your closet. A basic kit usually comes with a closet rod and enough components to give you multiple shelves that you can adjust. Additional components can be purchased to customize your closet even more. This is a great way to add storage space in your home without a major remodel.

Whenever your home improvement projects call for installing or replacing light switches, spend a little extra money to equip each room's primary lights with a dimmer switch. Not only will you yourself enjoy the increased flexibility offered by good dimmers, the expenditure will pay off in terms of a little added market value if you ever sell your home.

If the area you live in is dry and prone to fires, fencing material is probably big concern. You should look into fences made from white or red cedar. Cedar wood is beloved for the fragrance and durability and its safer in area that are prone to wildfires.

As stated in the beginning of this article, many home improvement disasters can be prevented by doing you research on home repairs before even beginning the process. All that is left for you to do is to put the information in this article to use before you begin your project.

Energy Conservation Begins At Home

Most Americans would appreciate saving both money and energy. The primary areas for doing this is in our driving (vehicles) and in our home energy costs.

In many ways the rest of the world needs to catch up to what Americans are doing, but in some ways we Americans can take a lesson from our neighbors. For instance, a common experience in Europe is little known or experienced in the U.S., wall hung boilers. Another common experience for our central and southern American neighbors is electric coil shower heaters. Some Americans are trying these long experienced devices for the first time and saving energy while doing so.

These wall hung boilers are fully modulating. That means they start at a high energy output and then gradually reduce that input until the desired temperature is reached. Thats when the boiler will automatically close off and everyones needs have been met. The energy conservationist is glad it didnt last long, the home economist is glad it didnt cost as much, the environmentalist is glad the green print is larger than the emission to the ozone, and the home owner gets the temperature comfort desired.

These boilers can be fired by natural gas or propane. They are as compact as a storage cabinet and will save square footage for both living and storage. In many cases the use of these boilers has saved fifty percent in usage and in dollars. These things have the Energy Star certification and have earned the American Gas Association approval with an H-stamp rating for operating efficiency.

One of the greatest conveniences is how quiet they run. Some homeowners have even installed these boilers in a large closet within the master bedroom. In-floor radiant heating systems make use of these boilers and the compatibility with U.S. air handlers, baseboard or wall radiators has not been a discouraging issue.

Many Americans have begun using tankless water heaters that are mounted to the outside of a home or in an attic or utility room. These tankless heaters receive the water and carry it through an intensely heated electric coil and straight to the hot water tap in any sink. There is no need to constantly heat a tank of water and then send it to the tap while waiting for the water to heat to a desired temperature. This obviously is less wear and tear on the unit, less likely to allow water leaks, and amazingly more efficient in decreasing the continual need to keep an amount of water near heated level upon demand.

When in a crunch and able to make use of an inconspicuous window opening, can help you to remodel the space for a wall hung boiler or tankless water heater and still save room for a window access to the out of doors.

Lets do what we can to help save home energy and the worlds environment.

Beginner's Guide To Buying A Garage Door

So you want to buy a garage door and be an expert your first time out. Here are a few tips to aid the process of finding the right door for your home.

Some People break the process of looking for a garage door into very simple terms of trying to find something to fill a large hole in front of their home that looks good and is cost effective. That's a good start. Cost, appearance and functionality are part of the process, but safety, warranty, adaptability and value should also be part of the mix.

Here are some general guidelines:

Appearance There are a wide range of options out there. You don't have to buy a white garage door with a lot of squares anymore. In fact some manufacturers can give you a door with no squares at all. There are a multitude of pattern and design options for most manufacturers.

Most manufacturers have two or three colors, but some offer the flexibility of dozens of factory baked-on colors. What will look best with your home and bring out the features you think are important? Those are the key questions to ask.

Material and Design Steel garage doors come in embossed, ribbed and flush designs. Garage doors come in steel, copper, glass and aluminum, so there are multiple options to consider. You have more options than just the one door you may be looking at in the showroom. Some manufacturers specialize in customizing your door within a very short time, so lead time for a customized door with the right material and look is another option to consider.

The value of the steel in your garage door is also a major issue. Hi-tensile steel is best in at least 25-gauage for protection from denting. Ensure that you inquire about the gauge of steel used and whether the paint is baked on, or simply sprayed. This will give a very clear picture in a hurry about the quality that went into your potential purchase.

Optional Windows Any garage door can be purchased with optional windows. A myriad of patterns and designs are now available that allow in natural light to liven up the garage. Weigh safety issues in your choice and whether the windows ar made of acrylic or glass.

Insulation value Some manufacturers tout the insulation value of garage doors. Most people question this concern, since the garage in most hoes is neither heated nor cooled. If insulation is a concern to you, lightweight polystyrene foam insulation can be added to most doors. Insulated doors will help to reduce the amount of outside temperatures that enters your garage, thus keeping it more comfortable for you. An insulated door is generally quieter and has a more attractive interior than an non-insulated door.

Springs The spring is perhaps the most undervalued part of a garage door initially but makes its value known very quickly. Low cost doors tend to use extension springs. make sure an internal safety containment cable is included in case of breakage.

Springs tend to be the first part of the garage door to need service or replacement. many springs are tested to operate between 5,000 to 10,000 cycles while some manufacturers make a spring that will last up to 30,000 cycles or more. That's a wide difference in longevity and value when you add it up. Most homeowners use their garage doors up to 3, 000 times per year. So a 10,000 cycle spring could break within 3 to 4 years. Replacement usually costs #150 - $250. Check the manufacturer's warranty on the spring. Never buy a door with only one year warranty on the spring.

Hardware This is another defining difference in quality and value. Is the manufacturer giving you hardware that will last for five years or thirty years? The coating on the hardware will be one of the first clues and make the difference in rust, so common in humid areas. Check for at least a G-60 Zinc Coating on the hardware.

Wind Resistance If you live in a high wind region, you'll regret skimping on your garage door. The garage door industry set standards on wind loads that a door should be able to tolerate. make sure the door you're looking at meets local building codes. Conventional garage doors usually can handle a wind load up to 35 mph, while others build one that is standard at 70 mph. Additional struts can increase the wind resistance on any door.

Warranty How much of a warranty can you get? This is where manufacturers tend to thin out in a hurry. many offer one year warranties and limited use warranties. But there is at least one company that offers a lifetime warranty on its product. Who is willing to stand behind their product? When you're investing money in a garage door this should be a big consideration.

While you may save $100 - $200 in buying a cheaper door, you will actually be paying more in the long run when considered in terms of how much you spend on your door over any given period. In many cases you get a much greater value, by spending the extra $100 to $200 up front. In general, lok for a garage door warranty that covers moving parts for at least 15 to 20 years, and that covers torsion springs for at least 5 -10 years or more.

Garage door opener Openers are usually available with a belt or a chain drive and a 1/2 or 1/3 horsepower drive. power is usually only a factor in choosing an opener when a large door is involved. Safety standards uninitiated in 1993 require that a door reverse its direction when something crosses the path of the photoelectric eyes in place that cross the door opening. This is a key safety feature. But ne standards aside, many openers are still noisy and carry limited warranties. Noise can be a factor if there is a bedroom or room above the garage.

What To Ask From Disaster Restoration Experts

A disaster can be confusing and traumatizing. A lot of people often forget things or are too frazzled to remember important things when faced with a fire, flooding, a storm or any other kind of damage. It is therefore a good idea to always keep the number of a good disaster renovation company handy, just in case you might need to consult them. There are a lot of different kinds of disasters that might befall a person or a family. A fire, flooding, a storm, vehicular damage and others are most but there are still some which may not be as ordinary as we think. In Texas, disaster restoration services, include all those listed above and even more.

1. How soon can restoration experts inspect the damage?

For most companies, they can do the inspection within a few hours of the call from their client.

2. What is the extent of the restoration?

The extent of the restoration will depend on the agreement between the property owner and the restoration company experts. Every aspect of the damage will be discussed and thoroughly checked for possible rehabilitation, repair or replacement. The company will not make a move towards restoration until both of you reach and agreement.

The time that it will take to restore or repair your property will depend on the extent of the damage and the avenue of repair that you and the company has agreed on.

3. Do I have to take the recommendation of my insurance company regarding who to hire for restoration?

No, the home owner does not have to hire the restoration firm that was recommended by the insurance company. Most insurance companies have a list of partners that they work with and are affiliated with them but these are just suggestions. If you do not feel comfortable with the recommendations, you can consult a company that is not on their list.

4. Can the restorers work only while I am in the house?

If you feel uneasy with having strangers in the house while you are away, it might be difficult to restore the damaged area of your home as soon as possible. Most expert restorers and workers like to work during regular working hours and may charge extra for overtime. Some companies might be able to accommodate your request.

5. Can personal items with sentimental value be restored?

During disasters, people tend to first save themselves and their families before realizing that they have left behind most, if not all of their valuables. Restoration may be difficult for personal items which are usually one of a kind but restorers rely on technology and other experts to help you in any way they can.

6. Will you take care of my personal belongings while restoring them?

Utmost care and consideration will be given to each item that experts will collect from your building. They are not called experts for nothing and they know what to do to prevent further damage to your belongings.

7. Will the smell of smoke every disappear?

Disaster restoration experts all over the country, from Austin to Washington DC, know how to deal with the aftermath of a disaster. The overwhelming smell of smoke and the presence of soot in and around the affected area will be cleaned up and ventilated properly.

8. How well trained and updated are the restoration experts?

There is a presiding organization that the government acknowledges as the one to ensure that all companies working in this industry will follow the stringent rules and regulations that are in place to ensure that clients will be satisfied with the outcome. The organization will also police the skills and achievements of the professionals who work in these kinds of companies.

These are just a few of the more relevant questions that are commonly asked by clients. Suffice to say that there are several hundreds of these kinds of companies around the country and they all strive to achieve the goals that their clients expect from them. For more information:

Furnace Installation Preparation Tips For Savvy Homeowners

Your furnace needs to be installed properly whether it happens to be an upgrade or system replacement. Many furnace problems that can occur over time are due to a poor installation job. Whenever you are purchasing a new heating system, the home evaluation is one of the more critical aspects. A Toronto HVAC contractor comes to your house prior to the installation to check everything out. There are some things that need to be done ahead of time prior to the installation as well.

Evaluating Your Needs

First of all, a home inspection is conducted by an HVAC company in order to assess what your specific homeowner needs are. In order for the furnace to work properly and efficiently, its capacity has to meet a particular room's heating requirements. If it happens to be the first time you are purchasing a furnace, then you'll need assistance to ensure that you get the proper sized system.

There are many different factors that must be considered when determining the best size of unit. These factors include doors, windows, roofing and any other ventilation systems as well as home insulation that might affect the furnace's load capacity.

Inspecting The Air Ducts

HVAC contractors also inspect your home's airflow. In order for a furnace installation to reach optimum performance, the airflow of a specific space needs to be matched. That is why it is necessary to inspect your home's vents and ducts. If the ducts happen to be dirty, they will need to be cleaned. It helps prevent any dust particles from getting into your new system. When the ducts are free of dust they provide you with clean air for breathing and good respiratory health.

Professional duct cleaning services should be hired prior to having a heating system installed. Depending on where the ducts are located, it might be necessary for them to be sealed. A heating contractor can do this for you.

Clear Space

In order to ensure that your furnace installation goes smoothly, make sure that the conditions make it easy for your contractors to do their work. Figure out where the furnace will be installed and determine whether anything needs to be moved. Make sure the area is accessible. The contractors shouldn't be tripping over things when trying to get your new heating system installed.

Ask how long it will take for the installation. Then you will know how long the contractors are going to be working at your house. If you have any children, make sure they have some place to be while the work is being done. You an also talk to a Toronto heating company like Toronto Furnace Experts and ask them if there are any other requirements that are necessary for the installation.