Moving from one home to another can be one of the most stressful things people do in their lives. To move everything you own -- much of it fragile and important to you -- from one place to another involves careful planning, organization, good equipment and tools, the right packing materials and a big helping of common sense.
Here are some guidelines about preparing for your move.
Types of services: When you start shopping around for movers, you will need to let them know which services you desire so they can plan all aspects of the move.
Trailers come in several different weight classes with maximum tow ratings. Some people still weld trailer hitches to the frame (which could possibly weaken the frame). Companies that rent trailers also offer to rent or sell custom-fitted hitches that bolt to the frame and usually use pre-existing holes.
Trucks can be rented for do-it-yourself moving for local, in-town moves where the truck is picked up and returned to the same facility, and one-way moves, where it is picked up from one location and dropped off at another.
Anybody who's ever tried to move a piano knows that it's a difficult job best left to professionals. Pianos are large and very heavy yet extremely fragile.
When you move, you can make life a bit easier if you have an organized list of the people or businesses who will need to know your new address.
Paving problems can come in a variety of forms, from cracks to potholes to washboarding.
This information can help clarify and answer some questions about installing loose fill paving.
Gravel, sand, small rock and wood chips are all types of loose fill. Because there are so many loose fill options, you need to assess the use of the area before deciding which fill would work best.
This information will help clarify and answer some questions about asphalt paving.
This information can clarify and help answer some questions about maintenance of asphalt pavement.
This information can clarify and help answer some questions about cleaning gutters.
Q: I am trying to replace pieces of a gutter at my home. My problem is finding the style that is already on the house. The name imprinted is Rainmaster, which was sold by the now defunct Home Quarters. Home Depot has taken over this area and does not carry a compatible product. Can you help me track an address for Rainmaster or offer a suggestion, short of replacing my entire system?
Q: I recently replaced my roof and reapplied stucco on my home. During this procedure the gutters were removed. I would prefer to do it myself if possible, but how do I begin?
Gutters are critical components of a house because they protect both the roof and the foundations from moisture damage by channeling water from the roof out away from the house.
Adding a heater to your swimming pool can let you use your pool earlier in the year and long after your friends have abandoned their pools for the season. It also lengthens your swimming day, so you can exercise early each morning, or entertain later each evening.
Protect the investment you have made in your pool by staying on top of common problems.
If you long to take a dip in a pool at your convenience, and you have room to install one, building a swimming pool can provide hours of relaxation and fun. But before you begin, assess your wants and needs. Indoor pools will either require construction of an addition to your home or an outbuilding. If you have a building in mind for your pool, make sure it has adequate water and utility services. Outdoor swimming pools come in three basic types: above ground, in ground (made of vinyl) and in ground (made of concrete).
Keep your pool clean and enjoy the rewards of diving into the cool water this summer.
This information can clarify and help answer some questions about swimming pools.
Wood is perhaps the most practical of all flooring materials. But over time, the protective finish may wear off. This occurs most noticably in heavy traffic areas, or you may decide to freshen up the finish of a wood floor that's been hidden under carpet for years. Also, applying a modern new finish can make hardwood floors much easier to maintain than when they were originally installed.
A monitored security system could help you and your family feel safer in your home, and protect the investment you've made. A system guards your home, belongings and family while you're there as well as when you're away.
One of the first things most of us want to do after moving is to get our home phone service up and running.
Today there are more choices than ever for home phone services, which most of us consider essential. More companies are competing for your business, offering competitive prices, but there's more to choosing your phone service than just price. You'll want to ensure that you're choosing a stable company that will be there when you need it.
Here's a checklist of supplies for the well-organized home office or paperwork area. You may have other items to add.
More than just a clamp rack, this is a full-service mobile work station and storage solution! Load both sides to the hilt with clamps, and use the interior space to store everything from air compressors to dust collectors.
Security systems are only as strong as their weakest link and if you set up equipment that's too complicated for household members to use, they are likely to ignore the equipment or work around it.
This guide will help you make a systematic analysis of your home and help you select the best course of action to improve home security for you and your family.
Here is a checklist of things you can do to make your home safer.
When buying a safe, you will have three basic types of safes to choose from:
Q: I need help locating companies who deal with disaster services such as fire, water, and remolding.
The stresses that an earthquake creates for a structure can cause damage or even complete collapse. Here are some ways you can retrofit and strengthen your home to reduce the problems that might be caused by an earthquake.
If you're planning to reinforce your home against earthquakes, it's essential to understand some of the basic concepts of seismic retrofitting.
These simple childproofing steps can help to insure your child's safety:
As parents, we all want our children to be safe. No matter how safe we think our children are at home, the fact is that every day, thousands of children are injured needlessly due to avoidable household accidents. Every year, nearly 4.5 million children are seriously injured in their homes.
These simple tips can help to keep you and your family safe from fire.
Q: We installed one half inch masonite siding inside a 30x50 foot room for commercial use. Our town has recently become incorporated, and I heard that the code states that the ceiling must have a one-hour burn through rating. How do I find out if this is true?
Wildfires are a frightening and deadly natural disaster, which spread with rapid speed and can destroy everything in their path. Homeowners can take precautions to protect their homes from wildfires by using the following list of tips:
House fires are frightening and deadly. Homeowners should make sure that their homes are not susceptible to fire. Here is a list of fire prevention tips.
Fire extinguishers have a role for only a brief moment at the beginning of a fire. The key is to place fire extinguishers throughout the house so that no matter where the fire starts, an extinguisher will be near at hand. There should be one in the kitchen, garage, workshop, basement and near any sleeping areas. There should be at least one extinguisher on each floor.
Smoke is responsible for three out of four fire-related deaths. Working smoke detectors should be installed on every level of your home and inside sleeping areas. Inexpensive smoke detectors are also available for the hearing impaired. Fire extinguishers should be mounted in the kitchen, garage and workshop. Purchase an ABC type extinguisher for putting out all types of fires. Have your chimney inspected and cleaned once a year. Install a chimney spark arrester to help prevent roof fires.
Feeling safe and secure is an important element in enjoying your home. If you're purchasing a new home or considering a remodel or addition to your existing residence, you'll need to assess your security needs for doors and windows.
The use of deadbolt locks makes it harder for a burglar to force his way in. A full-service security system will deter him even further.
Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral fiber processed into thousands of building materials before 1980, including "cottage cheese" type and acoustic tile ceilings, furnace and duct insulation, drywall taping and joint compound, textured paints and plaster, and linoleum and vinyl flooring. It was banned from use in most building materials in the 1970s after the EPA proved that inhaling asbestos fibers caused or increased the risk of developing incurable lung diseases, including lung cancer, asbestosis and mesothelioma.
Lead abatement (removal) must be handled by a licensed and certified hazardous material contractor. Workers must wear protective suits and respirators. When working indoors, the process begins by removing furnishings and sealing the affected area with plastic.
Lead was used in paint and gasoline before 1978 and is known to be toxic. Lead poisoning, caused by an accumulation of lead in the bloodstream over the long or short term, damages the brain, kidneys and nerves. It is injested by eating paint chips, putting hands which have touched unstable lead paint in the mouth and inhaling lead dust. Children and pregnant women are especially susceptible. One in 11 children in America has dangerous levels of lead in their blood.
Among the hottest window treatments today, inside or out, are shutters. Most shutters are fixed, and used primarily as decoration, but well-designed shutters can do more than just look good.
As Jimmy Buffet once wrote, 'If you live in the area, you have to know how to reason with hurricane season.' Here are some tips.
Storm shelters can be installed by a manufacturer's representative, licensed contractor or homeowner. Some manufacturers will only provide warrantees on shelters installed by their own distributors. Others require they be installed by licensed contractors. Others offer to give consumers installation instructions.
For more than 100 years, alarm companies made their livelihood by installing systems to protect lives and property, both residentially and commercially. The most common scenario was for a system to be installed after a potential customer had received several estimates from two, three or more companies. The system was usually purchased, although leases were not uncommon.
The security of your home is very important to peace of mind, and many factors go into determining how secure it will be.
Most people find home security issues confusing and end up spending money on measures that aren't really effective or appropriate for their home. The best approach is step by step, addressing the low cost items first. Here are issues you should consider in making your home more secure.
If you're considering installing a lightning protection system, here's a statistic to consider. According to data compiled by Westinghouse Electric Company, given an average location and exposure, a 50 ft. high building stands a greater chance of being struck by lightning once a year than a card player has of filing an ordinary flush in a poker game. In the United States the average geographic area is subjected to 40 lightning strokes per square mile every year.
Here are some basic tips for dealing with thunderstorms and protecting your property from the damage they can cause.
The most frightening thing about tornados and hurricanes is the uncertainty of when one might hit, and how strong it will be. Tornados and hurricanes can level a town in a matter of minutes. While you cannot guarantee that your home will not be damaged in a tornado or hurricane, you can take a few steps to lessen the impact and provide safety for you and your family. Here is a list to help you prepare for either of these natural disasters:
Before you leave on vacation, follow these tips and feel more secure about your home being vacant.
Security cameras are becoming an increasingly popular way for the public to protect property and people. Once considered the exclusive realm of the rich, video surveillance, like most high-tech products, has become increasingly affordable.
Many homeowners are burdened with unwelcome house guests every year. It's not the kind of guests that you're thinking of, however, as this guest doesn't enter the home. It invites itself to sit on your roof and causes unsightly discoloration. It's algae and it effects a lot of homeowners, particularly those who live in areas of high humidity. Algae, however, doesn't discriminate against those who don't live in highly humid climates. It will attach to any roof and can be carried through wind, squirrels, birds, etc.
Roofs can heat to high temperatures under the hot summer sun, and once this happens your house will become very hot as well. Extra heat in your house will become uncomfortable and the cost of keeping an air conditioning unit running regularly can escalate significantly. However, extra heat within your house isn't the only problem. When a roof gets very hot it becomes more likely to crack. Heat from the sun acts to bake and contort the roof and eventually the roof can end up with cracks and holes.
Years ago, most homes were built with either wood shake, slate or clay roofs. These materials were very durable and handsome when installed. Over time, roofing manufacturers developed less expensive options to these traditional roofing materials. The result was asphalt roofing shingles that sometimes detracted from a home's character and overall look.
Years ago, it was an easy decision to choose shingles for your home. With little variety and few differences between those available, it was a fairly quick decision. However, that's no longer the case as there are now a wide variety of shingles to suit all homeowners. With many colors, styles and warranties, competition has never been more fierce as every manufacturer scrambles to offer the best of the best. CertainTeed Roof Shingles are available in a number of excellent choices.
Your home is designed to protect you, your family and your property from the elements, and the roof is the part of the house that takes the most damage in providing you with this invaluable service. Yet it is the one area of the home that is most overlooked by people looking to purchase a home and by those looking to upgrade or maintain their existing home. However, without adequate maintenance and regular care your roof is liable to take leaks and can become damaged very easily in the worst of conditions.
Q: I have a 12 year old white asphalt shingle roof with a lot of dark staining from the leaves of the nearby oak trees. Is there anything I can do about it?
Q: I am a first-time home buyer. We are in the process of deciding if we should purchase a new home.
One of the problems we have is that the house costs around 325K and the roof is composition shingle roof and not tile roof. Isn't a tile roof much more durable?
The world is full of copper lovers, and lovers of the copper roof are by no means an exception. There are essentially two different types of copper roof you can buy. There is the solid copper roof that consists solely of sheet copper on your roof. It is resilient to weathering and will protect your house for decades but it is incredibly costly. On the other hand, copper roof shingles are made by attached sheets of copper around standard asphalt shingles. All in all, the cost is likely to work out less than a slate roof but once the copper roof shingles have aged and been weathered they will take on the magnificent green look that only copper can create.
Q: I have an asphalt roof which is the original roof and needs to be replaced soon. Any idea how much this will cost?
If you want to determine roof slope, it isn't as difficult as you may think. In fact, it's quite simple and can be done in a short time with minimal inconvenience. This is not a project that should be intimidating, even though home improvement work can sometimes be stressful. The slope of a roof is measured as the length that a roof rises vertically over a 12-inch horizontal distance. You can do this job yourself, ask a friend to help or call a roofing professional.
Q: I am interested in educating myself on the different types of roofing material available. We just bought a house that had its roof improperly installed. We would like to replace it with something better. Could you outline the different materials?
You may be asking yourself, "Do I need a new roof?" If you are also asking yourself the following questions, then you want to seriously consider a roof replacement:
Q: We have three wind turbines on our new roof. With winter setting in, is it necessary to cover them? Many of our neighbors do not, so as new home owners, we are unsure.
As with any major job that needs doing to the house one of the most important factors that is likely to play on your mind is the cost. Roof price is made up of several factors, and you need to be careful that you aren't compromising quality or service in order to lower the roof price by a few dollars. Many roofing contractors will provide similar price quotes but you should always ensure that you're comparing them on a like for like basis. Don't forget that the cheapest offer isn't necessarily the best value and the most expensive offer isn't necessarily the worst value for money.
There are many resources on how to find a roof leak but most of the time, homeowners can locate the problem themselves within minutes. A leaking roof should be repaired promptly before further damaged is caused to the structure of the roof itself, or to the home. If a leak is left untreated, the structure will likely be damaged along with some belongings inside your home.
A roof leak is caused by one thing - moisture. This can sometimes be difficult to detect, but technology has provided roofing professionals with a new method to find a flat roof leak using infrared survey. Because of their simplicity, flat roofs are common. Unfortunately, also because of their design, a flat roof is more susceptible to water build up and damage.
Flat roofs need to be covered with a waterproof material because water will not run off as in the case of pitched roofs.
Q: I'm trying to find out if a hip roof can be framed as a true cathedral. I know that when you are framing a gable roof, you can use collar ties in lieu of attaching ceiling joists to the bottom of the rafters. Can the same be done for a hip roof?
Roofing is a factor of home maintenance that is often overlooked. The roof is the first line of defense our homes have against the elements but it is often neglected when we consider the repairs on our houses. When it comes to repairing or replacing roofs you should never try to do it yourself unless you really know what you are doing. Most of us will need to get in contact with roofers who know the job inside out and can complete the work professionally. Hiring a contractor for any type of work can be difficult, and if there are many roofers in one area that it can seem even more difficult.
Whether you are considering having your home re-roofed or whether you simply want to upgrade your existing roof you should consider how many layers of shingles you can and should have on your roof. In some states and for certain types of building you will require a permit to have more than two layers of shingles. You should also check with a roofing contractor that your roof and the building itself could cope with the extra weight burden that would be placed on them.
Roofs are the most important part of a home's weatherproofing -- a leaking roof can cause incalculable damage in a relatively short time. When people spot a leak, they may discover that finding an available roofer can be difficult. Obviously, a roofer makes more money doing a replacement than he or she does doing simple repairs. But this isn't the main reason roofers avoid repair work.
This consumer guide to ice dams will help you understand what ice dams are, what causes them, and what you can do to prevent them.
As homeowners, we always concern ourselves with the harsh weather that accompanies the winter season. The cold temperatures and build-up of snow and ice can cause a wide array of roofing problems. Snow and ice shield installation is one way to protect your roof from the worst Mother Nature has to offer. Snow is a beautiful thing, but not if it's sitting on our roof and costing us big bucks in repairs.
Removing heavy snow from your roof can prevent costly water damage to your roof, walls and ceilings. Water leaks from ice and snow are caused by interior heat from the house. Water from this melting is trapped and creates an ice dam on the roof, gutters and downspouts. The water then takes the path of least resistance and under the roof system, or sideways and through flashings which were not designed for ponded water. When this happens, interior water damage can occur. But unless you can do it safely, don't jeopardize your well-being by trying to remove it yourself. Leave it to a professional.
When it starts raining outside an incredible amount of water beats down on the roof of your house. Your roof does the job of protecting your house and everything in it from the rain. Most roofs are sloped so water can run off and prevent heavy collections of rainwater from gathering in pockets all over the roof. If this were to happen the roof could become severely damaged and eventually holes will form where the rainwater once was (it would now be underneath the hole that has formed).
Many roofs need to be replaced prematurely due to moisture damage from leaks and improper installation. Thermal infrared inspections are non-contact, non-destructive testing procedures. This technology is used in finding damaged portions of the roofing structure so they can be repaired before water damage rots the entire roof.
In order to properly install a shingle roof, several guidelines must be followed to ensure safety and accuracy. Begin by placing a starter strip, which will prevent water from leaking onto the roof in between the shingles. Begin installing shingles from a bottom corner and working your way up. When installing the first row, confirm that each shingle has a slight overhang, which will allow water to drip away. Make sure that, as you progress up each row, they are lined up evenly.
Roofing can be a dangerous job. Working at heights and often in some extreme conditions means that workers are put at risk on a fairly regular basis. If a company is held liable for any injuries or accidents to workers then without worker's compensation insurance they may be forced to pay out large sums from their own pockets. For small roofing firms this can lead to financial ruin. Roofing insurance may cost money but it is a lot cheaper than not having it in the event that you need it.
Q: I'm looking for roof shingles from about the 1920s in tin, copper, aluminum, etc. measuring about 18" x 18" with a T shape on them. They may be interlocking. Something close would be fine.
Q: I would like to know if it is recommended to remove previous, 18 year old asphalt shingles before installing new shingles of the same type?
A skylight can be a beautiful addition to any home. Some people get depressed without sunlight and, for those who fit that description, a skylight can help to make the home bright and cheery. A skylight is designed to fill your home with sun, but certainly not the rain. Unfortunately, nothing is perfect and even skylights can develop structural problems.
It can be difficult to tell exactly where leaks are coming from in your roof and even more difficult to tell why they have started. If you have horizontal roof boards for instance the leak can be located several feet away from the wet patch on your ceiling or in your attic. The causes of a leaking roof can range from wear and tear to roof leaking by wind driven rain. Wind driven rain can cause a problem and be difficult to fix. Often a roof can be in perfect condition but because the wind drives the rain across and upwards it can get under the eave and under the roof.
A skylight is an excellent source of both warmth and light for your home and it can enhance the overall appearance of your house as well as giving a little extra air when required. A number of factors can lead to a leaky skylight but the most common factor is an improperly fitted or installed skylight. This inadequacy is usually brought about because having a skylight fitted by a professional roofing contractor can cost a lot of money, and people tend to revert to a handyman or, often worse, doing it themselves. Lack of proper knowledge of construction regarding the skylight fitting and the roof surrounding it can lead to disastrous results. Even the inadequate fixing of an existing leaky skylight can make things worse.
Having a new roof fitted or paying for repairs can sometimes lead to high roof costs, but there are ways to ensure that your roof cost does not become astronomical. The first thing to remember is that with materials you usually have to pay for better quality but by adding that little extra to your overall roof cost you could be saving money in the long run. Using lower grades of materials may bring down the roof cost you are quoted but it is not sound economy in the long run.
Looking after the roof is the first and possibly most important step to extend the life of any house. Roof leaks are obviously a big problem in any house but knowing the correlation between melting snow and roof leaks can help to prevent one of the major problems that many houses face. When snow melts and runs down the roof it often refreezes at it reaches the edge of the roof and the gutter. You've probably stood back in awe looking at these ice dams that form, but these can cause havoc with the integrity of your roof. However, they are relatively easy to prevent and doing so will save money and headaches in the future.
Metal roofing is usually manufactured in steel, copper, aluminum or stainless steel. It can be coated in a many different types and colors of paint and other coatings, making it as beautiful as it is durable. Modern metal roofing materials frequently carry warrantees of 50 years.
Metal roofing is an innovative approach to home improvement. When you think of a metal roof, you would often think of a commercial building. Fortunately for homeowners, that's no longer the case. In addition to the many technical benefits of metal roofing, it can be designed to look like conventional shingles, tile or slate. Visual appeal is one of the cosmetic reasons that someone may choose metal roofing. It can be light in color compared to other material, which is not always the norm. But it never hurts to lighten up, right?
Modern roofing options are the result of eons of invention and experimentation. Some, such as slate and wood shakes, have remained virtually unchanged for centuries. Others, such as asphalt/fiberglass composites, lightweight concrete, and coated-metal tile, are products of the technological revolution. Each has slightly different durability, appearance, cost, and ease of application.
Q: We have a roof that is 30 years old and appears to be in pretty good shape - no leaks. We are hoping we can wait a year to have it redone when we will be better prepared financially, but my husband has noticed that there is a green mold growing under the edge of the roof at the back of the house. We are worried this may mean the wood underneath is rotting. Is this something to be concerned about or can he do something to get rid of the visible mold?
A shingle that shows 3 tabs, or measures 3 feet, is fittingly known as 3-tab roofing shingles. They are normally guaranteed for 20 years and help the roof to have a smooth, defined look. Depending on the manufacturer, 3-tab shingles are often available in 20, 25 or even 30 year limited warranties. They are generally available in a variety of colors and it's also important to note that 3-tab roofing shingles are some of the most cost efficient shingles to use on your home.
The most important part of preventing roof leaks is replacing damaged or missing roofing. Preservative oil treatments (sealants) can prolong the life of a wood shake roof if they are repeated at appropriate intervals throughout the life of a roof, ideally starting when the roof is three to six years old. However, that will not "repair" cracked or curling shakes which need to be replaced to maintain the roof's effectiveness. Also, after replacing some cracked, missing and curling wood shakes throughout the roof, the new shakes are lighter in color and can stand out like polka dots. Applying a preservative oil treatment can help blend the new shakes in with older ones and make the roof look more attractive, especially when trying to sell the house.
A well cared for roof lasts much longer than a roof that is left to its own devices. By spotting problems early you can save yourself a lot of heartache and extra cost from big problems. Your roof is responsible for taking the damage from everything that the elements can throw at it including wind, rain, sun and snow but it is also attacked by leaves, insects and other natural predators. Ineffective roofing can mean that any of these factors find their way into your attic and eventually your home and it is important you do what you can to prevent this from happening.
Simple roofing problems can easily become bigger and more expensive problems if they are left unattended. For this reason the most effective way to prevent large repair bills to your roof is to have regular and thorough checks done. You can have a certified roof inspection done that will give you a two-year certificate. If anything goes wrong with your roof in this two-year period the roofing contractor who carried out the roofing inspection will repair the damages free of charge. By using a service similar to this problems can be identified early and rectified before they become uncontrollable and a new roof is required.