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Energy Loss In The HouseHave you ever check your home energy usage? If you have not do it, you might want to consider to do it since it will give a lot of benefits for you and your home’s utility bills.

One of the best advantage to do this to ensure the efficiency of your home energy usage. So, homeowner able to control their energy usage and saving their energy budget.

In many cases, doors and windows are common objects that causing energy waste and letting the heat escape to outside. There are also other objects that can waste the energy such as the attics. If homeowner did not pay attention to their attics, they can become big source for heat loss and increase the energy cost for the homeowner.

Usually modern attics will be insulated, but unfortunately the attics have open ventilation to manage the air circulation. If the air did not circulate properly in the attic, it can damage the roofing and other belonging in the attic.

The good news is most home ceiling has insulation to prevent the heat escape from the house to the attic. Unfortunately most homeowners did not utilize the insulation by neglecting the attic’s entrance.

The attic’s entrance could become a big hole that will let the energy or air conditioning escape to the outside from the space gaps which is located around the entrance. By installing temporary seals to this gaps can help homeowner to reduce their energy cost for the cooling and heating up to 20%.

Fireplaces are also another big problem that can causing energy loss in a house. The original purpose of fireplace is as a way to let the smoke from the furnace directly out of the house. The smoke will be push by the heat that is rise up from the furnace itself.

Unfortunately when the fireplace is not being use it still release the heat or cooling air from inside the house to the outside. So, homeowner need to handle this situation by ensuring that the chimney is closed properly if they are not using the fireplace to warm up the house to prevent the energy loss.

Pay attention to these potential places for energy loss will really help the home owner to prevent the increase of energy usage that will increase the energy bills. Homeowners will be glad by using common sense method could help them save a lot of money.

Replacing Part Of Your Wood FloorSooner or later, any homeowner will have to face the unappealing blemish that present on their floor which is caused by spills, stains or any other smears made by the people and their pets in the house.

In hardwood flooring, the groove usually has section so the groove can be locked to the plank, therefore if homeowner got some extra material, it will become very handy. So, if you buy hardwood flooring, try to get extra groove joints and store them somewhere safe, therefore it can be useful when you want to patch the floor.

But, you need to know that some board could not be fixed and you have to replace it completely. This condition usually happen in older houses, the flooring around old radiator or where the humidity is high. The moisture can make the flooring stained, disfigured or even rotted.

To remove the damage floorboard, homeowner can use circular saw to do it. But, the homeowner do not know how to do it, it will be better to let experienced handy man to do the job. Just, make sure that homeowner do not cut through the sub floor.

To prevent it from happening, you need to match the cut’s depth of the saw with the flooring thickness. After cutting the floorboard, take out the board slice and clean the debris and replace it with the board that is match with the original board’s size and color.
if homeowner need to change more than one board together, they should put the edge of the groove first. After that they can use blind and finishing nails at the tongue.

On the rest floorboard to be fit, cut off the bottom flange of the groove. You can put additional strength by putting a bead of special glue for wood on half groove’s tongue at the last joint that will be fitted.

When you place in the last board, the strip need to be top- nailed. You need to anchor and pre-drill the board using finishing nails every 12 inches at opposing angles spaced half inches from the edge. After you do this task, hit the nail heads until it sink in the board then use wood filler that match with the board’s color to make the board surface flat and use sand paper to make it smoother.

Modular HousesIt seem there are many myths and misconceptions surrounding the modular homes. Many people think that they need to spend more money to have modular homes compare than getting normal homes. They also assume that modular homes have higher insurance rate, weaker than on site houses, took longer time to made it, the structure is weak, can damage easily and cannot be modify.

But, the facts are very far from all of those misconceptions which are said above. Although the earliest production of modular homes are very simple and only cover the basic construction of a house.

But with latest technology development and consumer request for higher specification and features from the modular homes, the modular homes that are produced these days are built in modules or parts in a controlled environment of its manufacturer.

Around 90% of modular homes parts are produce in factories then transported to the customer’s site location to be assembled there.

To find out the truth rather than the myth about modular homes, customer should make a little research about these homes first. The actual fact is that these fabricated homes are less pricey compare to on site built housing.

The average cost for modular housing in per square foot is around 10% to 20% less than the on-site built houses with good quality. Meanwhile the insurance rate for these housing are the same as the on-site housing.

In the term of strength, the modular homes are not inferior to the on-site houses. Plus the modular homes are supervised more thoroughly since the parts are constructed in manufacturer’s factory where the environment is always monitored closely and protected from weather exposure, therefore these factors can improve the quality of house structure.

Meanwhile the on-site homes did not get monitored all the time and full open to weather exposure. The weather factor can increase the risk of water damage and mold issues in the future.

Modular housing are also have additional frames and support in its parts. This is to strengthen the parts when they are transported from the manufacturer to the assembly location, so it can stand to load factor such as vibration on the road.

But, in the matter of the strength to wear and tear both modular and on-site housing are equal since both housing type are exposed to weather after they are fully constructed. It will up to the maintenance from the home owner to preserve their homes.

In a matter of time modular housing will have shorter period of time. Since the house parts are built in a controlled environment, the manufacturing process will have less disturbing factors that can hinder the production process.

Most of them require up to 2 month from manufacturing the first parts of the house to the assembling time. Meanwhile most on-site housing require can take longer time, especially since the weather can disturb the home construction process.

Finally, modular houses can also be customized just like the on-site constructing houses. The home owner can customized the house according to their preference just like any other homes.

Foof ChairsFoof chairs are chairs which are filled with small shredded or small bean shaped Polyurethane foam. This type of chairs provides extra comfort and shooting cushion with sinking and fluffy sensation to its user. Therefore, the foof chairs are perfect for relaxation purpose.

The foof chairs do not use frames for it shapes. The Polyurethane foam beans are stuffed in to a special bag cover which will determine the shape and size of the foof chairs. The foof chairs are come in many different shapes.

The polyurethane beans are very durable, makes the foof chairs do not need to be refilled frequently. But, after some times the chairs will lose its extra fluffiness although it can be re-foofed to turn back its fluffiness just like the first time you bought it.

With the frame-less feature, the foof chairs will able to follow and adjust it shape according to your body shape. You can use it in the straight seating position, lean on seating, or sleeping position all with the same chair. This furniture is perfect for reading activity, desk work or just for watching TV.

It is a highly multipurpose chair that able to shape shifting following your body position. The foof chairs are available in many different sizes, there are small size chair that can be used for single person to extra-large size that can hold multiple people at once. People with various age ranges from children to elderly can use this furniture safely.

You can also made custom order for the foof chairs according to your own choice of fabric for the chair bag cover, size and color. The foof chairs is very affordable compare to many other chairs that offer the same comfort. And unlike other chairs that are heavy and bulky, the foof chairs are very lightweight despite its ability to support heavy burden and can be move easily to anywhere although you should not use it outdoor. That is why that the foof chair is very popular.

Water damage can cost a lot of money for any homeowners. The repair from water damage will be quite expensive. So, it will be better for homeowner to take some precaution to prepare them from the devastating event.

Water damage could happen to any time of the year, no matter the season you are in. There are many things that can cause water damage such as floods, storm, heavy rains but many water damage cases are caused from the house internal factors such as clogged pipes, poor home repair or renovation and malfunctioned appliances.

To save your money to fix the house from water damage, homeowners need to take precautions to avoid water damage from happening to their homes, especially from the internal factors that could cause water damage. Protecting the house from water damage is much cheaper compare than the repair cost from water damage.

When water damage occurs, the standing water will make the house material become weaker, rusted or rot, create a perfect place for mildew to grow and weaken the house’s structure or even the foundation. To fix all the broken and weaken house’s structure might require a lot of money.

Mold growth and weakened foundation are two of the most expensive from water damage repair costs. The damage will make the house become unsafe to stay in, and your family will need to vacant the house during the repair and renovation process.

Homeowners must learn on how to avoid the potential risks that can cause water damage to their homes. Here are some guides to prevent the water damage;

Repair the gutters at your home. Homeowners can repair the gutter by themselves. They can make regular check up to maintain the gutter function every season, so they can repair any leaks or damage from the gutter while it still small and before the damages become big and causing water damage to the house.

Installing gutter guards to prevent debris from blocking of the gutters.

Install extension for roof’s gutter downspout. This is to stir of the dump rain water from the roof, so it will fall far away from the house’s walls and foundation. If the rain water from the roof are falling to close to the wall and foundation, it will be easier for the water to reach the home foundation and basement and make serious damage to the foundation and basement.

Fix any loose door caulking and windows to prevent water from rain or snow entering the house and creating water damage.

Check the sump pump in the basement regularly. If the pump needs regular maintenance and repair, homeowner must do it right away. This is to make sure that it is working properly and ready to use anytime it is needed.

Check any appliances that using water or producing water from their operation such as air condition, dishwasher, refrigerator and washing machine from leakage that can causing water damage to the house.

Use drain guard for every drain opening in the house to prevent the large dirt and hair from entering the drain that can cause the drain get clogged.

Fix or replace any faucets that are leaking

Dry any area that gotten wet or damp immediately to prevent the mold from growing and causing damage to the house structure.

Remove all of the carpet from the area that is exposed to water damage. The wet carpet will make the floor surface become too damp and will slowly damage the floor.

Sofa TableSofa table is one of good methods to spruce your living room style. This piece of furniture is a good way to fill the blank spot that usually occur behind the couch. It is a simple but great idea to decorate your home since they are very versatile furnishing that will be worth to invest in.

Other than being good to be placed on the back of your couch, sofa tables can also perfect to be put in other areas in your home as well such as at the end of hallway to liven up and make the are become less empty and boring. It is also make the right decoration in the entry area. Home owners can use the sofa tables as a place to put other decoration items such as flower vase, small family photos, magazine, newspaper or any other small objects.

One of the best reasons to choose the sofa tables for your home décor is because this furniture often comes with eye catching design. There are various designs that you can choose from and with various material such as metal, wood or resin. There are also sofa tables that are made from combination of several materials such as glass and metal, creating unique and artistic design of furniture.

Some of the sofa tables have very unique design such as using various ornamental styles in their design with carved detail, twisted metal to add the complexity of the furniture, with various colors and painting to create more artistic looks.

So, it would not be difficult for you to find the sofa tables that you like from all the option that available in the stores. You can find the sofa tables that match with your present home decoration and living room. You can go either for classic design or for more straight lace design with the combination of silvery metal and glass.

The main point when choosing the right sofa tables for your home is that you need to remember not to choose the sofa tables that are not match with the style of your home décor. The mismatch will diminish the main point of sofa tables which is to fill the blank spot from your home décor.

Choosing the sofa tables that do not goes with the current home décor will make the furniture become stand out too much in the room just like a sore thumb. This is one of the most important rules in home decoration. If you use a modern style of decoration to an antique theme décor, the appearance will become confusing and weird. So, homeowner must not do this blunder at all costs, since people will become puzzled with the decoration preference in a bad way.

Small Size PatioIf you want to add a new looks for your backyard but there is only a little amount of space, you might want opting with small outdoor patio. Unlike many homeowners believes, patios are available in various sizes.

So, even if your backyard is small, you will able to find the right patio designs size that suit to your condition, and you will be able to spruce up your backyard landscape and increase your home value. You will also have nice outdoor place to hang out with your family or visiting guest

Building an outdoor patio will add personal touch to your home. So, if you live in a manufactured home like in a neighboring home, you might want to try this method to individualized your home and make it stand out more than the other houses in your neighborhood.

If you are still not sure about the choices of patio designs that fit to your backyard area, you need to maximize the information resources that can assist you in your research to find the right patio design. For example, you can check other people patio design such as your neighbors, or you can discuss it with landscapers, looking at the patios photos that available in the internet as reference for your own patio design.

One of the most important aspects in planning the patio for your small backyard is to determine the budget to build it. This aspect will assist you in making decision to select the patio style and size that suit to your backyard, and the materials that you are going to need to build the patio that you want.

With this budget planning you can also determine whether you can hire a professional contractor or it will be Do It Yourselves (DIY) project to build the patio. After you have make a thorough decision about this aspect, than you can go to the next step in planning to build your patio.

The next step is to make a rough draft for the patio design that you want to built on your backyard. You do not have to make it to be like a professional designer’s drawings. Make a rough sketch will do as long you are including the right measurement of your backyard. This will help to find which patio design that match to your backyard size and the amount of materials that you will need.

Inaccurate measurement of your backyard will influence your budget estimation and spending. Making a rough draft plan also will assist you to visualize the image on how the patio is going to look after it has built, and encase you might want to add or reduce some of the features in the patio plan.

Building the outdoor garden patio on your backyard is a great method to have a great additional space for your home. You will have great area to relax, hang out or having small banquet with your family and friends while enjoying the outdoor view and your backyard’s garden.

This is the last parts of materials that are often used as kitchen countertop. In this post we will talk about countertop that is made using hardwood, laminate and acrylic material.

Hardwood

Countertop which is made from hardwood is also known as Butcher Block Countertop because it is often used by butcher in their shop. Any types of hardwood can be used as countertop material, but usually the wood from oak or maple tree are the most popular hardwood for this purpose.

Hardwood countertop has warm and beautiful appearance with variety of textures, colors and shades. Hardwood countertop can also be used as secondary cutting board as long as the home owner does not mind that their countertop will get scratch all over its surface.

If the hardwood countertop get scratch, stain or deep cuts, it can be fix and sanded easily and then re-coating it to restore its appearance. The price for this type of countertop is somewhat more affordable to home owners.

The drawbacks of using this type of countertop are the material is quite soft, so it can chip, dent, scratch or get burn easier. Due to its nature characteristic, the hardwood shape can also change. It can get shrink or warp over the time.

The hardwood color can also affected by moisture, especially near the sinks where it often gets contacted by water. To prevent this from happening, regular sealing is needed to preserve the color.

Laminate

Formica commonly used as the material for laminate countertop. It is a thin plastic layer which is glued to a wood or particle board to imitate the appearance of hardwood but with lighter weight. There are countless of color and the pattern from this material.

Because this type of countertop is easily manufactured the price for this material is quite cheap. The plastic material has high resistance again stain and easily clean without too much of effort.

The laminate countertop has less durability compare to the other materials. It has weak resistance again scratch and heat. It is also vulnerable against abrasive cleaner that can make the color become dull. Even without using the abrasive cleaner, the color of this material will fade over the time. The laminate countertop is also weak again moisture. The plastic can warp and the glue becomes weak if it constantly exposed to water or high humidity.

Acrylic/solid surface

Solid surface or acrylic countertop are custom made counters that are used for special purpose or application. It is stronger and more durable than laminate countertop. It is also high resistance against water and even against bacteria and molds.

The material is non porous, so it high resistance against water and easier to clean. Although it has weak resistance against scratch, any scratch or damage can be sanded easily. The material is weak against heat, so it can get burnt easily.

So, with the variety of options that you can choose for your kitchen countertop, you can choose the material that suit with your taste, condition and budget. Renovating the old countertop could make good statement and enhance the appearance of your kitchen.

Let’s continue our last discussion about the materials that can be used as kitchen countertop

Tile

With the variety of tiles sizes, design, shapes and colors, there are endless choices of designs for countertop that using tiles. Not to mention that glazed porcelains and ceramics are already popular and common to accentuate the kitchen.

Tiles countertop can use a square inch tiles for its surface or if you prefer to use the bigger size that available in hardware store. Anyway you choose it can still work and improve the kitchen. Tiles countertop is relatively has high durability, scratch and heat resistance.

One of the best advantages in using tiles countertop that it is more affordable compare to most natural stones. You can choose the type of tiles that suit to your budget.

The drawbacks from using the tiles countertop is that the tile can chip easier compare to other material. But, on the other hand fixing it would also become easier and less expensive, since you will only need to replace the tiles that are damage without replacing the whole countertop tiles. You just need to find the same types of tiles with the same pattern and color.

Another drawback is the grouts between the tiles. The grouts can get stained easily from any spills. Therefore you need to clean it quickly and properly when there are spill, so it will not leave any stains.

Using larger size of tiles can reduce the amount of grouts from the countertop. But, if the tile is chipped and need to be replaced, the fixing costs will high since larger tiles is pricier than the smaller one. Therefore, the home owners need to think carefully about the size of tiles that they are going to use as the countertop.

Concrete

Concrete is also another good option for the countertop. Usually, the concrete that is used for the countertop surface is colored and polished until it shiny and smooth. If it done by experienced professional, concrete countertop can has similar appearance like any natural stones.

The concrete for the counters can either casted in a factory or it can be molded on the site. The concrete countertop can be molded in to various shapes with variety of thickness. Other advantages from the concrete countertop are that it has high durability and high resistance against scratch and heat.

Bu, due to its nature, the concrete countertop has more porous compare to other countertop material. Using the sealer to coat the surface has to be performed regularly along with waxing the surface to maintain its glossy and smooth surface. Therefore, the concrete countertop will require extensive maintenance.

Stainless steel

Although stainless steel countertop is commonly used for the kitchen of restaurants and other dining places, it can also be applied to common houses. There are many advantages when using stainless steel material as kitchen countertop such as; water and other liquid resistance, excellent durability, high stain and heat resistance, low maintenance, easy to clean and many other advantages.

Therefore, stainless steel countertop is perfect for busy kitchen with intense food preparation and cooking activities. The drawbacks are that the style and design for the stainless steel countertop is too plain, making the kitchen looks too stiff instead of stylish. The countertop surface is also easily dent because small impact and can scratched easily, leaving marks that difficult to fix.

On the next article we will discuss the last part of material that often used as the kitchen countertop.

If you are considering in replacing your old kitchen’s countertop with the new one to improve your kitchen’s style, one of the first consideration is to choose the material that you are going to use from all of the material option that available in the hardware store.

So, here are some basic information about countertop material that are often available. Therefore you can decide which countertop material that you want to install as your new kitchen countertop.

Granite

Granite is one of the most popular materials for kitchen countertop. People love to see its beautiful surface that pleasing the eyes of people who seen it. This material has high resistance against heat, so it can withstand from cooking activities, the stove and other cooking appliances.

Granite is also scratch resistance, so it has high durability and does not wear easily. Therefore this material can last for a long period of time. Granite is suitable both for modern and classic kitchen design, so this material will never out of style. It is one of the best choices to improve the kitchen both for the style and to improve the home value.

Unfortunately, due to it great advantages, natural granite is also one of the most expensive materials for countertop. Another drawback from this material is that this natural stone is porous. So, it can stain easily if you do not clean the surface immediately and properly.

To overcome this problem you can use special sealer to close the granite pores to prevent it from getting stained easily. The home owner must avoid using the granite countertop as secondary cutting board. Although this material is hard and has high scratch resistance, constant impact with the sharp knife will damage its finish and surface, and it is also will damage your kitchen knife’s edge too.

Other natural stones

Other than granite, there are also different kinds of natural stones that can be used as good material for the kitchen countertop such as limestone, slate surfaces, marble or quartz. Although they are not as good as granite, each one of these natural stones have their own appeal that can improve your kitchen style.

Limestone has natural appearance and its color can change to darker after some times. The stone is perfect for people who want to add natural style in their kitchen or to be used as outdoor countertop. But, this material is more porous than granite, so you need to clean quickly when there is spill on the surface.

Slate material often used for roofing. It has unique appearance, so it is really enhance your kitchen style. It has high durability and does not need sealing protection as other natural stones material, but regular maintenance is needed to preserve its appearance.

Natural marble has beautiful and unique color pattern. It is also has high resistance against heat, so it can absorb the heat from cooking activity and stay cool. It goes extremely well for food preparation and presentation. Unfortunately, this material has less durability than granite and it is need more sealing protection to maintain its appearance and from the stain.

Natural quartz has similar appearance like the slate material but has higher resistance again scratch and stain. Artificial quartz is also become great choice for countertop, but the price is more expensive than the natural quartz since the artificial require various materials to produce.

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