3 Signs That You Have a Termite Problem

Being a homeowner means keeping a watchful eye out for any problems that can have devastating effects on your home. One of the most important things to keep an eye out for is signs of termite damage. Termites live in dry wood such as door and window frames, or even in the foundations of your house. Here are three signs that you may have a termite problem. If you notice any of these things in your home, it’s important that you research professional termite treatments Fort Myers FL right away.

Flying Termites

If you are vigilant, you may be able to see the termites flying around your home before they infest the wood. These are termites that have left a nearby nest in order to build a new colony. Discarded wings are another sign of potential trouble, as termites shed their wings after finding a mate.

Hollow Timber

An area that has termite damage will sound hollow when knocked on. If the damage is severe enough, your finger or hand may even go right through the wood. This is because termites devour wood from the inside out, which leaves only a thin covering of wood behind.

Strange Sounds

Although termites are small, you can actually hear them working if you press your ear to the walls! They are noisy eaters, and you may be able to hear a rustling or munching sound as they work. If soldier termites feel that they are in danger, they will bang their heads against the wood to create a rattling sound in order to warn the rest of the colony.

If you suspect that your home has termites, its best to get control of the problem before serious structural damage occurs. Reaching out to to an exterminator early on can avoid costly repairs down the line.

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Why Your New Build Home Should Include a Fire Sprinkler System

New build homes are attractive to buyers, as they often include new features that are unavailable or expensive to retrofit in older construction. Buyers may be especially interested in homes under construction because they can select finishes, materials and technologies to be installed. Here’s why you should consider installing a fire sprinkler system in your brand-new residence too.

Detecting and Stopping Fires Quickly

Modern sprinklers detect fires and put them out. Activation through early detection helps to quickly stop the spread of flames, not only giving you and your family time to escape and call 911, but also minimizing damage to your home and belongings. These automated systems are always on and take protection further than smoke detectors and fire extinguishers. Reach out to a provider of fire sprinkler certification California to keep your setup maintained as part of a smart safety plan.

Delivering Value

By design, flames will be detected and extinguished by the nearest sprinkler only, so the potential water damage will usually be less costly than that of an uncontrolled blaze. Given the added protection of the home, owners may pay lower insurance premiums, too. Additionally, a built-in system can also be an attractive feature to future buyers.

Finding the Right System

Sprinkler configurations can be selected based on your home’s needs. Common types include the following:

  • Pre-Action schemes contain air and allow the flow of water only after detection, preventing water damage from false alarms.
  • Dry pipe sprinklers also store air, but they quickly release water, making them ideal for locales where freezing pipes are a concern.
  • Wet pipe setups are low-maintenance and cost-efficient and continuously hold water for quick release.
  • Deluge nozzles make use of detectors and are a good choice for spaces where flammable liquids are stored.

Furthermore, individual sprinklers also come in various styles and orientations, maximizing options for placement and incorporation into your home’s architecture.

A home fire sprinkler system is a worthwhile investment. It provides an extra layer of protection through quick heat detection and dousing. It can also be customized to meet the needs of your household.… Read more

How to Prepare for an Open House

Getting your house ready to sell can be a lot of work. You want to make sure everything that needs to be done is so that you have the best possible chance of selling. Check off each item on this list to ensure that your home is in top shape before the big day.

Clean

This occasion calls for more than just a basic cleaning. This would be a good time to splurge and hire a maid service Olney MD. Many places even specialize in deep cleaning homes for just this type of event. You want to make sure that every area sparkles and shines. If you do decide to do this yourself, don’t forget about dusting and scrubbing down the bathrooms.

Paint

A fresh coat of paint can bring a whole new look to a home. You don’t necessarily need to worry about every room, but it is always a good idea spruce up the main living areas and rooms that have noticeable chips. Going too bold with the color may deter people, so in this situation you may want to go with something more neutral.

Repair

This is a good time to take care of any major repairs. Make sure all lights are working, the roof is in good shape and there are no plumbing problems. Look at the flooring in each room and replace or fix any areas that are chipped or scratched. If steam cleaning doesn’t get your carpet looking presentable, you might want to go ahead and have it replaced, or you can always put that out as an offer for potential buyers who may want to choose their own.

One of the best things you can do before an open house is to find a good real estate agent. Look for somebody who you can trust and who has your best interest in mind. Ask friends and family for recommendations on someone they have used before.… Read more

Year Round Roof Care

You may be grateful to have a roof over your head but are you taking care of it, or are you just telling itself it’s probably fine? Roof maintenance is expensive, inconvenient and sometimes requires professional work. It’s tempting to ignore it, but there’s no denying that it’s necessary. Don’t wait for disaster to strike before you pay attention to the roof over your head.

In the Fall, Prepare for Winter

Fall maintenance, such as cleaning the gutters, is going to be about preparing your roof for the coming snow and ice. Make sure you have roof snow removal plans and a way to deal with ice buildup. Gutters need to be clear of leaves once the leaves are done coming down. No one enjoys cleaning gutters, but it’s better to clear your gutters now than to have your clogged gutters cause snow and ice to build up on your roof.

In the Spring, Check for Damage

Among other spring cleaning and springtime household maintenance tasks, look for damage from the previous winter. Check the gutters again: if you missed cleaning them in the fall, you may have put stress on your roof over the winter. And if you had an unusually snowy or icy winter, there may be unusual amounts of strain or damage. Look for signs of leaks and stress on the rafters and beams in the spring, so you have plenty of time to deal with the issue before next winter.

Keep an Eye on the Inside All Year Round

Remember that even a small leak may be a serious one. It may not be easy or safe to get out on your roof in the winter, but you can always check the insides for signs of wear and tear. The roof over your head is just as important as the rest of your house, perhaps even more so. You don’t want to neglect it.… Read more

Which Valve Lock Should You Choose?

When it’s time to perform maintenance or repairs on a pressurized valve, it’s necessary to shut off whatever material is in inside. Valve locks perform this critical role, one which can prevent potentially harmful accidents. But before you install one, it’s important to know that valve locks are not one-size-fits-all. There are several different types which are engineered for specific valves.

It’s more likely than not that your valve is one of the three most common: Ball valves, butterfly valves, or gate valves. Here’s how their corresponding valve lock systems work:

 

Ball Valve Locks

Ball valve lock systems combine an outside handle with an interior ball to control flow through the valve. You simply shift the handle to the off position to do so. They typically range from one half to eight inches in diameter and will work on a wide variety of pipes, including ones constructed of stainless steel, brass, bronze, chrome, titanium, PVC, CPVC and others.

 

Butterfly Valve Locks

Butterfly valves themselves are discs positioned in the center of a pipe. When given a quarter turn, they control flow. They are generally cheaper than ball valves because of their lighter weight. Butterfly valve locks, like ball valve locks, can be used on different sizes of pipes, but have a more limited range of 2.5 to 4 inches in diameter.

Gate Valve Locks

Gate valve locks work by blocking access to valve handles. They are thermoplastic covers in the shape of half circles. After they’re installed, a padlock or hasp can be used to secure them in place. Gate valve locks are mostly used with larger pipe diameters (from 2″ to the largest pipelines).

Valve lock systems have a wide range of applications: manufacturing, mining, utilities, municipal service, and oil and gas. But before choosing one, always make sure it is the right fit for the valve you need to shut off.… Read more

Choosing the Right Shade for Your Need

When purchasing shades for your home, you will want to do your research. Often people overlook the needs of the room and simply look at the design. However, how you use the room is just as, if not more, important than the look.

Blackout Shades

In bedrooms, especially children’s bedrooms, blackout shades New Jersey are a good choice. They block the light from coming in. If the light is keeping you or your children from sleeping, these will help. Depending on the installation, they can even block out nearly all light. This is essential for those who sleep during the day.

Room Darkening Shades

Room darkening shades do not block out as much as blackout shades. Instead, they significantly darken the room without making it completely dark. These are best used in bedrooms and living areas where you want to control the light coming in without blocking it out completely, which is helpful when you want to move around the area safely even when the shades are down.

Light Filtering Shades

When you want to have light in the room but also want privacy, light filtering shades are one way to go. They also offer some insulation, so they can help you save money on your energy bills. These work well in living areas, especially those that receive direct sun at certain times of the day.

Combinations

You may find yourself wanting a combination of these features. Some companies offer half and half options where you can have one shade, but move it from light filtering to blackout. You can also do a combination of an in-mount light filtering shade and an external mount room darkening shade.

No matter what your need, you can find a shade or combination to work for you. Remember to think first about your needs in the room and then find the color and style that work for you.

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What Does a Cabinetry Contractor Do?

So you’ve decided it’s time to refresh your kitchen. Great choice. Updating your kitchen will add value to your home and will hopefully bring you joy as well. Now comes the tricky part! You have to decide if you want to attempt this update on your own or if you want to hire someone to help. If you decide your renovation is best left in the hands of a professional, you then need to decide just who that person (or company) is. If your main project is updating your cabinetry, a cabinetry contractor Tampa is your best bet. But what, exactly can you expect from your cabinetry contractor?

Provide Guidance

Your cabinetry contractor will help guide you through the potentially overwhelming and time-consuming process of determining exactly what cabinets will be best for your new kitchen. There are so many cabinet options from which to choose, with variations in the type of material like wood or laminate, to style like Shaker, distressed or beadboard. Having a professional walk you through the process can help save many a headache.

Make Custom Designs

If you hire a professional cabinetry contractor, you have an advantage over someone who just buys stock cabinets from their local hardware store. A professional can listen to your desires and help come up with a custom design to perfectly fit your specific kitchen and make your dreams a reality.

Install Cabinets With Ease

Another benefit of a professional contractor is that you won’t have to worry about figuring out exactly how to install your new cabinets. There are so many pieces and they can all look the same to the untrained eye! A professional can take your custom, fantastic cabinets and install them perfectly, enabling you to enjoy your new kitchen sooner and without the worry that they might fall down!

Cabinetry contractors can help make your renovation an exciting, pleasant experience and give you the kitchen of your dreams.… Read more

Cowhide Rugs Make A Striking Classic For Your Home

Classics are items that always remain in style. Decorating with classics is one way to make sure you have classic style in your home. One form of decor that has always been popular and continues to be popular is the cowhide rug. Cowhide rugs are popular for so many reasons. People who love quality know these are rugs that will look good and require very little attention to continue to look good. They’re not only items that fit in well with any kind of decor choice. They are also rugs that capture attention and serve as an easy focal point. If you are looking for a rug that is very much a rug for the ages and yet has very bold lines at the same time, the cowhide rug is the perfect thing to bring home.

Amazing Patterns

These are rugs that offer incredible patterns. Patterns help any rug stand out and draw attention to themselves and the other lovely elements in any home. These are rugs that have all sorts of different patterns. Homeowners can pick from rugs that have large patterns that are a good choice in a room that needs some personality. They will also find more subtle patterns on the rugs that are good in places that need a touch of understated details. Every single rug of this kind has a totally unique pattern that sets it apart from other rugs on the market. This one reason why they capture such attention and delight when seen in a home.

Adding Detail

Cowhide rugs are all about the use of marvelous detail. Each rug has the kind of texture that people love to touch. Every rug is one that has lots of softness but is also very tough and durable at the same time. Each rug is also one that makes good use of color. Buyers will find rugs in colors such as black, white, brown and grey that work well with any other color they have in mind. This makes it easy for the homeowner to add lots of layers of welcome detail that makes a room come alive.

Easy Care

Not only are these rugs that are a great way to create personality and elegance in any home. They are also rugs that require very little care to look wonderful. All it takes is a quick cleaning now and then. The rug can be shaken out and used again and again. It can also be placed in rooms that get a lot of traffic such as near an entryway. The natural materials used in the rug are materials that are designed to stand up to many years of use and still have that loveliness that the buyer wanted. This also makes them a good choice for people who are busy and may not have a lot of time to keep the rug in good shape. They know they can take the rug, get it quickly cleaned and use it in any room at … Read more

How Technology is Changing Interior Design

Technology is one of the changes that has come knocking on the doors of homes and corporate spaces. It has not only transformed the way work is done but also the way our living and work spaces look. From flat screen technology to virtual and augmented reality modern invention is being used to capture the imagination and create comfortable and stylish interiors. Here’s a look at how this is happening.

Flat screens

Once upon a time, the tube display was the only technology used to make displays on the screen. Television and computers were like big boxes and changing the channel required proximity to the TV and using the hands to press a button. These Cathode Ray Tubes took a lot of spaces in our homes and offices. But now with the plasma and Liquid Crystal Displays our screens have gotten thinner as panel displays are possible.

Television now can be hung on the wall and blend perfectly with the interior. The viewer sits far away flipping between channels with the remote control. Flat screens have enabled us to free up to 20 % of our office and living room spaces.

Green homes

It’s not hard nowadays to find homes designed to be eco-friendly. With the growing concern over climate change, people are striving to go greener by telling designers to use eco-friendly materials that save water, energy and improve air quality. Here’s how technology is enabling eco-friendly homes.

  • Indoor gardens: folks in the city are now growing their veggies thanks to WIFI enabled plant pots and smart gardens that will allow automatic watering and remote monitoring. This technology also sends information about the soil moisture and temperature to the owner’s phone or computer
  • Blind technology for optimal lighting: technology has also influenced how blinds are made. They’re now being optimized for better house lighting and heat insulation. Remote controlled blinds whose slat spaces are adjusted depending on the house heating needs.
  • Products with Volatile Organic Compounds are being avoided.

Smart homes

Automation such as voice assistants, automatic temperature, heating and lighting regulation with the flip of a switch has been made possible with the internet of things. Designers, therefore, have to include the spaces for these smart switches, electricity meters, cameras, plugs, thermostats, and smart kitchen utensils.

Virtual and Augmented Reality

They were once big on the gaming world, now they’ve made their way into architectural and design. Virtual Reality, for example, is being used by designers to show the client how the project is going to be upon completion. The client can tour the room before it’s even built using VR head-mounted displays. Augmented Reality, on the other hand, is being used to show how a current environment is going to turn out if the arrangement or additional tools are added. A client can see how the room is going to look if for example a smart garden is added to it.

Video walls

Another trend is to use several tiled screens to display artwork and more. … Read more

Tips on a Stress-Free Move

Whether you’re moving to downsize as an empty-nester or you’re a young professional transferred to a different company branch location, packing up all of your belongings and moving to a new home can be a stressful experience. Here are some tips to help your move go smoothly.

Get Help

When it comes to big items like appliances and furniture, you’re going to need some help. If you don’t know anyone in your new area, you might want to consider hiring one of the many companies specializing in furniture and appliance installation Washington DC has to offer. Consider hiring a moving company if you know you’re going to have a tight schedule. Trying to do too much by yourself will only make you feel overwhelmed.

Stay Organized

One of the very best things you can do to keep calm during the chaos of a move is to stay organized. For instance, packing all of your kitchen items together can help you quickly find what you need in the new house while packing too many ‘miscellaneous’ boxes can wreak havoc when you’re unpacking everything. Make a list of all the steps you need to take for the move and keep important documents in a safe place so you don’t find yourself scrambling at the last minute.

Plan Ahead

Another way to take the stress out of moving is to plan ahead. One way of doing this is if you know you’re going to have no time or energy to cook the week of the move, go ahead and plan for it. If you’re worried about the financial strain of eating out, go ahead and stock up on restaurant gift cards ahead of time so your cash flow isn’t tied up the week of the move. A little extra planning now can reap real rewards when it comes to moving day.

Overall, moving is an exciting time of change. If you can do what you can ahead of time to keep the stress to a minimum, your experience will be a lot smoother and more enjoyable.… Read more