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Monthly Archives: May 2017

Main Carpet Care Problems

Water

Water damage is the #1 potential threat to your carpet. Water damage can be caused by flooding, leaky pipes or appliances, or other sources. The important thing is to first determine whether the water source was sanitary or not. Rain or water from a pipe leak are considered sanitary, whereas a wet carpet may be caused by a toilet overflow, and though unsanitary, may still be salvageable. A carpet that has been flooded by raw sewage or groundwater should not be salvaged. Anything more than a minor spill should be dealt with by a professional, but for small flooding occurrences use clean white towels and fans to dry the area.

Dirt

Dirt, of course, is the enemy of any carpet, but there are steps you can take to minimize the amount of dirt that reaches your carpet in the first place. Use entry mats or rugs wherever possible – a large percentage of dirt can be absorbed before the room is entered. Dirt can actually damage the fibers through abrasion. It’s also a good idea to move furniture periodically, avoiding repeated foot traffic in the same areas. Regular vacuuming is important and it’s worth investing in a good vacuum cleaner with rotating brushes. Periodic professional cleaning is also strongly recommended.

Stains

It’s not always a simple matter to deal with stains. Effective stain removal is a science, with ph factors to consider among other things, but the homeowner can do a lot to treat stains without necessarily calling a professional. The important thing to keep in mind is to catch the stain before it has time to set. If it’s a wet stain, blot it with white clean cloth or paper towels first and try to absorb as much as you can. If it’s more dry or solid you can use the edge of a spoon, but before you treat the stain it’s wise to check a stain treatment chart, or better yet, if it looks like it has the potential to leave a permanent stain, call a professional. Better to pay for cleaning than to buy new carpet!

Mold or Mildew

If there is any indication that there is mold or mildew an any of your carpets, it’s crucial for your health that it be dealt with. Mold and mildew can cause mild to severe health problems and unless it’s a small are which can be treated with vinegar or ammonia, for instance, it’s strongly advised to call a carpet cleaning service.

Stained Glass Window Clings

To design the window cling you need to open the graphics programs and choose the size of the glass window cling. Purchase or download a clip art for the cling decoration from the vast number of clip arts available online.

If you are artistic then you can even design patterns such as flowers, animals, cartoon characters or novel abstract designs. Use simple bright colors and dark outlines to create your design as this allows easy printing. Intricacies in the design and use of varied shades in the clings might be lost when you finally print out the cling.

Before you can print it out on static cling sheets it is a good idea to first obtain a test printout on a plain sheet of paper. This will help you ascertain how the final product would appear and also make changes if required. Once you are satisfied with the output load the window cling sheet in the printer and print the image.

Use a craft knife to cut the image to size and reduce the excesses. Now peel the backing of the glass window cling and place it on the window. It is a good idea to clean the window completely to remove any dirt and then slightly moisten the window before applying the glass window cling. Make sure that you smoothen out the edges of the cling as you apply it so as to remove any bubbles or wrinkles beneath the cling.

With easily available materials and the technology at your fingertips to assist you, these faux stained glass window clings are easy to make and can transform the look of your house especially in the holiday season.

Follow this step-by-step guide to make a sun catcher stained glass window cling. However do not just restrict yourself to simple everyday designs and instead think of innovative patterns and designs.

 

Proper AC Filter Maintenance Tips

Proper filter maintenance is crucial to your unit! Filters are designed to pull particles out of the air while letting the air pass through easily. As the filter fills up, the space for air to pass through is reduced, making your air conditioner work harder to suck air through the filter. This extra work will reduce its lifecycle and it is much more wallet friendly to change an air filter once a month (more in summer and winter months when your unit runs almost constantly) than it is to replace your entire air conditioner!

Changing your filter regularly is also good for your health. The filter pulls dust, pet hair, smoke and other irritants out of the air. These pollutants can aggravate your allergies or asthma if you have them, and, according to The American Lung Association, they can even cause cancer! I know it seems like everything causes cancer these days, but if something as simple as changing your A/C filter can help prevent it, why not do it?

There are two basic types of filters: reusable and disposable. Disposable filters do cost less than reusable ones, but the cost difference isn’t too great, and you don’t have to replace a reusable filter every month. However, you do have to clean a reusable filter every month. Either way you choose to go, your air filter needs monthly maintenance.

Don’t know how to change or wash your filter? Here are step by step instructions!

Change your filter:
1. Turn off your system.
2. The filter will be located close to the intake-outtake blower (in most homes it’s close to your control box). There may be a door or panel that swings or lifts open; open it and remove the filter.
3. Before you install your new filter look around the edge to find an arrow. This arrow tells you the direction of the filter. Make sure the arrow points to the blower and is not installed backwards (check the direction of your old filter before you take it out or just as you remove it if you’re not sure which way it goes in)
4. Lastly, turn your system back on and make sure it’s functioning properly.

Clean your filter:
1. Again, turn off your system, locate and remove your filter.
2. You will want to clean your filter outside, if possible. Use a brush to remove caked on debris.
3. Vacuum the filter with your hose attachment.
4. Wash the filter with running water. Using a spray attachment on your water hose works best. Just remember to spray in the opposite direction as the air flows. In other words, spray from back to front (the debris is on the front of the filter, spraying from back to front will more efficiently clean your filter).
5. Let your filter air dry completely before replacing.
6. Turn your system on and make sure it’s functioning properly.

Your return vent (the vent that houses the filter) is usually located close to the thermostat. If your thermostat is on a staircase, the return vent is usually on the slanted ceiling above the stairs. Otherwise, the vent is usually located close to the floor under the thermostat or close to or on the ceiling above the thermostat. If you cannot find your return vent or just need help changing your filter, call your AC contractor.

 

Tips to Build Concrete Pond

Excavate a hole of almost about 15cm (6 inch) deeper and width should wider than the required size. You need to shape the shelves and secure the surface with soil. To prevent the wet cement from sliding to the bottom slope, make sure that the sides are not steeper than 45 degrees.

Remember, if your garden soil is heavy clay, then it has the tendency to shrink in the summer season. This sort of soil is not good for your concrete. It is better to lay 8cm (3inches) of moist builders’ sand layer. For those having sandy soil, no need to lay the layer of moist builders’ sand.

Next step is to apply the base layer. You need to line the hole with a 5cm (2inches) thick base layer of concrete. To get the stronger and durable pond, it is better to adjust the ratios rather than constructing the pond with a single strength of concrete. There are three stages involved in building a strong, durable concrete pond. The first stage involves the base layer. The base layer should be: seven parts of gravel (15mm), one part cement and three parts builders’ sand.

The mixture should be stiff but moist, so that you can easily apply it. Always prepare the mixture near the construction site so that it will not get dry before you apply it. Always wait overnight to dry the first layer before apply the new layer to get the strong joints. Apply the mixture of base layer to the hole. Wait for an hour or so, then take a stiff broom and brush the drying surface to make some rough patches. These rough patches help the second layer to hold the surface firmly. Leave the surface to dry for a night.

On the next day, use 5cm (2inches) of mesh wire netting to cover the base layer to strengthen the concrete. Make sure that you overlap the strips of wire by about 10cm (4inches) and tread it with your feet into the curves of the pond. Now you have to lay another layer of the concrete which should be 10cm (4inches) thick. The ratio of ingredients should be: one part cement along with waterproofing agent, three parts gravel (15mm), and two parts builders’ sand. Use trowel to level the surface and the edges. Also use sacking or horticultural fleece to protect the surface from sunlight. You have to wait for about two weeks before further tasks. In hot conditions, sprinkle the water on the surface.

After two weeks, apply the third and last layer over the entire surface. The layer should be 5cm (2inches) thick with the ratio of: one part cement, waterproofing agent, and four parts builders’ sand. Allow the surface to dry for couple of weeks.

In the end, apply waterproofing primer and sealant. Wash the interior and remove any debris or dirt. Fill the pond with water.