New Windows: They Saved My Bank Account

3 Essential Gutter Improvements To Save Your Home From Damage

Adding gutters to your home can be a great way to provide you with protection from damage. If you are worried about water problems with your foundation, gutters help solve some of these issues. They can also be the cause of ice dams, which is why there are some necessary improvements that you may want to consider to prevent damage to your home. Here are some of the gutter improvements that you may want to consider to prevent damage to your home:

1. Installing Gutters To Protect From Static Water Pressure

Runoff from the roof of your home can be the source of many foundation problems, such as cracks and erosion. To prevent these problems, the first step is to have gutters installed on your home. The gutters can be used to divert the water away from the foundation and prevent damage and leaks, especially in homes with basements. It can even be a good solution for an additional improvement, such as water collection systems.

2. Reduce Strain On Foundations With The Addition Of Downspout Drain Pipes

One of the strains on your foundation can come from static water pressure, which is caused as water filters through the soil around your home. To reduce stress near your foundation, have drain lines installed at the downspouts of your gutters. These should extend far away from your foundation, or maybe even in a dry well if you have landscaping with watershed that slopes toward your home. This is especially a good idea if you have a home with a finished basement, where water problems can be potentially disastrous.

3. Give Your Home Protection From Debris And Ice Dams With Additional Guards

There are also problems that the gutters themselves can cause, such as debris and ice dams that cause excessive wear of the roofing at the eaves. To avoid these problems, have gutter guards installed. These should be the solid type of gutters that allow debris to flow over the top of the gutter to prevent dams. If you choose to use screens or other types of guards, check them periodically to make sure the gutters are staying clean and that there is not a buildup of materials between the guards and roofing.

Consider some of these improvements to your gutters to prevent damage to your home. You can contact a gutter installation service like Conifer Gutter Service and talk with them about the needed improvements to protect your home from any potential damage.

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Four Reasons to Leave Key Cutting to the Professionals

You can buy key cutting tools online and even cheap machines that promise to copy keys for you. However, in most cases, if you want accurate, well cut keys that really work, you need to turn to a locksmith. These professionals have the tools, training and expertise to cut keys properly every time.

Here are four of the reasons you don’t want to cut your own keys and risk making a poor copy:

1. Poorly cut keys may not work.

Locks are relatively complicated. When you stick a key in a lock, the bumps on the key align with a series of pins in the lock. The pins must be properly engaged or the cylinder inside the lock won’t be able to turn. If the bumps on your key are improperly shaped or have rough edges, it may not hit the correct drivers, and the lock will not open.

2. Poorly cut keys risk getting stuck.

Once inside a lock, a poorly cut key may easily get stuck. If a high curve on the key gets lodged in a small space inside the lock, it may prove nearly impossible to pull the key out of the lock. At that point, you may need to turn to a professional locksmith to remove it.

3. Poorly cut keys may damage locks.

Whether it gets stuck or not, a poorly cut key may damage the lock. As metal hits metal inside the lock, the key may scratch or start to wear down some of the metal inside the lock. If the lock’s key pins or driver pins are damaged, the lock may stop working. Depending on the position the lock is in when it breaks, it may be stuck either in the engaged or unengaged position, neither of which is ideal permanently.

4. Poorly cut keys may cause issues with your car.

In addition to all of the potential issues you can have with poorly cut keys and locks in your home, you can also have issues with poorly cut keys and car ignitions. When you put a key in a car’s ignition, it turns the ignition cylinder which in turn engages the ignition switch and the starter. If the key is not properly engaged in the cylinder, it may not hit the switch correctly, and as a result, your car may not function properly.

Want to learn more about why key cutting is best left to the pros? Look for key cutting services in your area.

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Helpful Information About Repairing A Damaged Residential Bay Window

Have you noticed that the bay window in your house has begun to sag and has a crack in one of the glass panes? Rather than investing in a new bay window, you might be able to get a few repairs done to bring the one that you have back to a good condition. Take a look at this article to discover a few things that can be done to repair your damaged bay window so you can avoid spending money on getting a new one.

1. Lifting the Window

The first step to repairing your damaged bay window is to lift it back up to the right level. If you want to attempt lifting the window up on your own, you will need at least two hydraulic jacks. The jacks can probably be rented and industrial equipment store if you don’t want to purchase your own. Place a jack under each side of the bay window and use them to carefully lift it up. After the window is up to the right level, install structural brackets at the top of each side of the window to keep it in place. Do not remove the jacks until the brackets are securely in place.

2. Repairing Damaged Wood

The next step to bringing your bay window back to a good condition is to repair any areas of wood that is damaged, such as small holes or cracks. If you leave damaged wood on your lifted bay window, it will only lead to you needing untimely repairs. Hire a professional to repair holes and cracks with new wood. He or she will likely only have to place new wood inside of the holes and cracks to for stabilization of the frame as a whole. If there is severe damage to the wood, you might need a new frame installed altogether. 

3. Getting Rid of Cracks

When cracks develop in a glass pane, it does not necessarily mean that you need new glass installed. A professional glass repair specialist should be able to repair the crack to the point of you not being able to notice that it was ever there. However, the ability to repair a cracked glass pane will depend on the severity of the crack. If the crack is too long and deep, you might need to replace the glass pane. Get in touch with a glass specialist to find out if your damaged bay window can be repaired or not.  

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3 Reasons To Consider Installing Artificial Grass In Your Yard

When you think about artificial turf, images of football fields probably come to mind. But did you know it’s possible to install artificial grass right on your own property? Artificial grass is growing in popularity with homeowners but not always for the same reason. Artificial grass can provide a variety of benefits that you might not have previously considered. Here are three reasons why you might want to give artificial grass a try.

Ease of Maintenance

Cutting the grass is just accepted as part of the regular property maintenance routine for many homeowners. But there are a variety of reasons why it might no longer be a good idea to continue blocking out two to three hours every week to keep your lawn looking great. If you have children or are about to start a family, time is a very precious commodity. If you are growing older, you might soon reach a state where you can no longer cut the grass with the same amount of ease that you did when your body was younger. Artificial grass requires very little ongoing maintenance, which can free you up for other endeavors or save you from putting extra strain on your aging body.

Friendly to the Environment

 Homes with artificial turf in their yard have a lower environmental footprint than those that use natural grass. For example, every time you start up the lawn mower to cut your natural grass, you are letting out carbon emissions into the air. If you live in an area of the country that is prone to drought, you might sometimes be put under a water restriction. In this situation, using a hose to water your lawn might be frowned upon. Natural grass that is treated with chemicals may also create some pollution due to water runoff into drains. Artificial turf has none of these issues.

Let the Kids (and Dogs) Play

If you have young kids who are going to be running around outside a lot in the years to come, there may be some concern about potential damage that could be caused to the yard. Too much horseplay in one area could lead to bald spots in your yard if you’re not careful. Artificial turf is much more durable and will be able to withstand the playtime onslaught. Artificial turf can also be helpful if you have a dog or two at home. With fake grass, there is no mud to be dug up and no dirt to be tracked back inside the house.

Artificial grass is easier to maintain and potentially friendlier to the environment than managing natural grass. Artificial grass will also allow your children and pets to go for a romp outside without you have to worry so much about potential damage. For more tips, check with a company like Alpine Rock and Block.

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How To Make Your Used Furniture Match In Your Space

If you have purchased several pieces of used furniture, chances are you haven’t gotten a matching set. When it comes to your home’s decor, it’s still possible to make these mixed, eclectic pieces work for your space in a way that looks and feels inviting. Here are a few tips to help you create a beautiful space at home with your used furniture pieces.

Consider Refinishing

For wooden furniture pieces, you can always refinish a couple of items to match one centralized item. It’s a good idea to refinish products that are smaller in size. If you have a large bookshelf, for example, refinish the corresponding coffee table or chairs with wooden legs to match using a similarly toned wood stain. This will help make everything look more appealing and it’s a lot easier to refinish smaller pieces rather than larger ones. The finished product may not be an exact match, but it can help improve the overall fluidity of the wood tones and make them look more streamlined. Consider finishing darker pieces to match rather than lighter ones so it won’t be as noticeable if they’re not an exact match.

Reupholster

Perhaps you’ve purchased a used loveseat and sofa at two different stores and the colors or patterns are not quite jiving. Pick the item that you most prefer to keep as-is and get the other item reupholstered in a similar shade to closely match your favorite. If you bought something with a funky pattern, you may not be able to mimic it exactly, but a nice solid shade will help bring the room together. When you buy used furniture, try to purchase items that are close to what you already have or that are not upholstered with material that you’ll have a hard time finding for the other pieces you want to reupholster.

Paint Does Wonders

Wooden furniture can be made to match with a simple coat of paint. You can paint everything white, brown, or get creative and use a variety of colors like teal or even a nice brick red. The paint color you choose should go well with your other home decor such as the wall color, or a similar shade to a large accent piece like an area rug. Use a high quality, semi-gloss paint that’s made for wood and that will hold up well to heavy use and scratches. Painting your used furniture is the easiest way to get those unusual pieces to look just as if you had purchased them together brand new.

For more information, contact a company like Bucks County Estate Traders

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Choosing Window Blinds For Your Home: Factors To Consider

When you decide that it is time to change up the window treatments in your home, you know that there are numerous choices available to you when you select you new window treatments. If you decide that you want to install window blinds, what you may not realize is that not all window blinds are created equal. There are several factors that you will need to consider when selecting the right window blinds for you and your home. Get to know more about these different factors and be sure that the window blinds you choose are the right style and look for your home redesign.

The Window Blind Mounting Choice

There are different options available to you in the way that you mount your window blinds. Essentially, the term mounting means where on your window frame you attach the headrail and supports that hold your blinds in place.

Window blind mounts can come in three different designs. The first is inside mount blinds. Inside mounting means that the headrail is on the inside of the window frame. The headrail can and likely will still protrude from the plane of the window frame though. The blinds fit inside the frame of the window. Many people opt for this design because of the aesthetic appeal and the fact that additional window treatments like curtains can be added on top of them.

Flush blinds are the second type of window blind mounting. It is similar to inside mount blinds but the plane of the headrail and the blinds themselves are flush to the window frame (meaning everything lays flat).

And finally, there are exterior mount window blinds. The headrail and supports are attached just outside of the window frame. This blind style provides more protection from light but may be less aesthetically appealing than the other two options.

Window Blind Materials

Of course, once you choose the mount style for your window blinds, you need to choose the right window blind materials for your window treatments. The two most popular blind materials are wood and aluminum.

Aluminum blinds are perhaps the most commonly used window blinds because they are the least expensive type of window blinds. These metal blinds are lighter weight than wood blinds and have the additional advantage of being waterproof. Of course, they have fewer options as far as colors and have less of an aesthetic appeal than wood blinds.

Wood blinds have a classic and rustic look and appeal. You can choose many different types of wood and can choose natural wood grain for the color or you can stain or paint them to change up the look. Wood blinds are also better insulators than aluminum blinds and block more light. However, they may require more maintenance and can warp from sun and moisture exposure.

Now that you know a few of the factors to consider when choosing your window blinds, you can select the options that work best for you and get your blinds installed as soon as possible. Look for inspiration online, such as at http://www.sylvansdrapesandblinds.com.

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Resurrect Your Landscaping From Boring To Drop Dead Gorgeous

If you have become complacent with how your yard looks, you may be overlooking the possibility of your home lacking curb appeal. The exterior of properties is just as important as the interior, and a beautiful landscape does not have to take a lot of creativity and work on your part. There are a few things that you can do to make your landscape more appealing, and if you lack the time or interest in tackling it yourself, a landscape company can be used as a resource. The following represent some actions that can be taken to improve the appearance of your property in a short amount of time. 

Correct brown spots under trees.

Some people do not understand why their lawns have cumbersome brown spots located beneath trees. Perhaps you have tried things such as watering the grass in the area, but the grass underneath trees on your property may still appear drab. This issue may be the result of several factors, but it is often the result of trees soaking up nutrients in the soil via their roots. If the problem is related to tree roots, then you can improve the appearance of the affected areas by adding mulch around the base of the tree. The addition of a stone wall or a stone base around the mulch can add further aesthetic appeal. 

Excavate trees as needed. 

Your home is likely a beautiful one, but if it is hard to see your home from a distance, then it is possible that you and your family are the only ones aware of your home’s beauty. Having too many trees on your property can obstruct the view of your home from the street. Keep in mind that old or sick trees may pose more problems such as potentially falling and causing property damage or injuries. Dense trees and other types of tall vegetation may also interfere with the amount of sunlight that reaches your property. 

Plant and fertilize problematic areas as needed. 

If you do not have any flowers around your walkway, consider adding some. Ensure that you select the best flowers according to your geographical location. A landscaping company can help you determine this if you are unsure. Planting shrubberies around the front of your home can also add visual appeal. Fertilizing your lawn is the best option for ensuring that your lawn has the nutrients needed to encourage your grass to grow. You might also benefit from consulting with a landscaper like http://www.headmanlawncare.com about planting grass or investing in artificial grass if you do not like the appearance of your existing grass. 

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