Interior Painting To Help Sell Your Home

How to Paint a Room

Painting a room can be a task that takes a couple of hours, a half day, or more. It all depends on what and how much you decide to paint. You can freshen up a room by giving a door or cabinet a new coat of paint in just a few hours. Or you can break it into smaller jobs and spread them out over a week or more. Whatever the size of the job you decide to tackle, the painting techniques remain the same.

In this article, we’ll take you all the way through the process of painting a room. From prepping to cleaning up, we have the job — and your room — covered. We’ll start at square one, with how you should use your painting equipment.

Brushes

When you embark on an interior painting job, you’ll soon discover how easy it is to use brushes and rollers competently. Even so, there are a few techniques that will help postpone fatigue and provide a neater job.

The grip you use depends on the brush you’ve chosen. Trim and sash brushes with pencil handles are grasped much as you would a pencil, with the thumb and the first two fingers of the hand. This technique gives you excellent control for intricate painting. With beaver-tail handles on larger brushes, you’ll need a stronger grip because the brushes are wider and heavier. Hold the handle with the entire hand, letting the handle span the width of your palm as you would hold a tennis racket. This technique works best when you’re painting large, flat surfaces.

The goal of loading a brush is to get as much paint on the wall as possible without dribbling it all over the floor and yourself in the process. It will take you only a few minutes to be able to gauge accurately how much paint your brush will hold along the way. Meanwhile, start the job by dampening the bristles of the brush (with water for latex or the appropriate thinner for other types of paint) to condition them and make them more efficient. Remove excess moisture by gently striking the metal band around the handle’s base against the edge of your palm and into a sink or bucket.

Decorating Home

Get the home of your dreams with our selection of decorating equipment and accessories

Wallpaper

Whether you’re giving your kitchen a new lease of life, jazzing up the kid’s bedroom or creating a statement wall in your living room, we’ve got wallpaper to suit any DIY project.

If you love wallpaper, paint and all things interior design, then you have come to the right place. The Range has a huge collection of wallpaper, interior paint, sanding and stripping tools, adhesives, fillers and more accessories to redecorate your house with style. If you’re going to do some wallpapering at home, The Range offers damask wallpaper, feature wallpaper and kids wallpaper. Get all your DIY done for bedroom, living room, kitchen and bathroom walls with our pasting tables, surface covers, ladders and brushes. And don’t forget to check out our design trends, best sellers and brands such as Coloroll, Crown and Arthouse.

If you’re looking to paint rather than wallpaper, stock Dulux, Hammerite and Crown among many other brands in every colour under the rainbow! Once you’ve got you got your primer sorted, take home some tester pots and choose your colour scheme. And to complete the new look of your home, we also stock exterior paint for your outdoor walls. Shop by brand, including Ronseal and Cuprinol, and be the most house-proud people in the street. Inside and out, The Range has got all your decorating needs under one roof.

How to Paint a Mural

Learn how to paint a mural in acrylics! These pages will cover all the common questions you might have if you want to paint an indoor mural, such as:

What type of paint should I use to paint a mural?

What other materials do I need to paint a mural?

How do I prepare a wall before painting a mural on it?

What are some mural painting techniques?

How do I finish or seal the mural?

What type of paint to use for an indoor mural

When you paint a mural, you’ll have two distinct stages of painting, just as when you paint on canvas: first you’ll create an underpainting to block in main areas of color and outline the general composition, and then you’ll paint in the detail.

To paint large blocks of color (such as a stretch of blue sky, green hills, etc), use  interior household paint, also known as  latex paint. This is the kind of paint you would normally paint walls with. Painting large blocks of color with latex paint is more economical than trying to cover the entire wall with the artist quality acrylics that you buy from art supply stores. You will get better coverage from interior household paint and save yourself a ton of money in the meantime as you learn how to paint a mural.

Interior household paint comes in four different sheens: flat, eggshell, satin and semi-gloss. An eggshell sheen works best for mural. Steer away from satin or semi-gloss sheens, because they will be too shiny. The flat sheen is also not the best choice because it cannot be scrubbed. Eggshell, however, is just right, because it can be cleaned and it can safely accept layers of paint on top of it. 

To tackle the detailed work on your mural, use your tubes and jars of artist-quality acrylics and proceed just as if you were painting on canvas. Most brands of acrylics will work well for indoor mural painting

Unique Interior Paint Ideas That Show Personality

One of the things that makes a home truly yours is showing your unique style. Interior paint is one of the best ways to do this, and even a small change can showcase exactly who you are. There are a number of ways you can use interior paint in unique ways to create a space people will ooh and ahh over.

Wall Colors

The most obvious choice for paint is adding color to your walls. Don’t be afraid to use a color a bit outside the norm, especially if you plan to live in the house for a while. If you’re planning to flip the house or sell soon, neutral colors are often best.

Furniture

If painting walls a unique color isn’t your thing, then choosing a bright color and painting an end table, dresser or table might be the way to go.

Kitchen Cabinets

White cabinets with black granite countertops might be the current rage, but what if you thought outside the box a bit? Instead of painting old, builder’s grade oak cabinets white, what if you went with a color that was unique? More distinctive trends include cabinets in a deep navy blue with gray tiles on your backsplash.

Ceilings

One trend that has been growing in popularity is adding a pop of color to a ceiling and keeping the walls a neutral color. This tends to add a fresh color without overwhelming the room. If sitting with friends and visiting, the color is barely noticeable, but it does make a statement when someone walks into a room. Consider white walls and a pop of orange or lime green on the ceiling.

Easy Fixes for Interior Painting Mistakes

Painting a room can be an easy and inexpensive upgrade, whether you’re freshening it up or dramatically changing the color. With a little planning and a few expert tips, this do-it-yourself project can be as quick and easy as it seems. Consumer Reports’ paint pro offers foolproof ways to prevent goofs and make flawless fixes.

Missed Spots

The goof. Blame this painting mistake on the lighting, fatigue, distraction, or spreading the paint too thin.

The fix. Good thing you kept the leftover paint (in a tightly sealed container, or course). After the paint dries—usually about 4 hours—touch up the missed spots with a brush. But if you do it before the paint dries completely you’ll mess up the paint surrounding the spot. As for spreading the paint too thin, a roller dipped in paint should cover a 2-by-2-foot section of the wall. See the video below for how to ace it.

Paint Runs

The goof. Perhaps you’re using a long-napped roller, loading too much paint on the roller or brush, or not spreading the paint well.

The fix. Once the paint dries, use fine sandpaper to remove the run, then retouch the area with a brush and a little paint, feathering the edges.

Roller Marks

The goof. A cheap roller with obvious seams could be the problem, and the paint makes a difference too.

The fix. Synthetic short-napped roller covers (1/4 inch) work best on most walls, ceilings, and trim. Use longer-nap roller covers for textured walls, or walls that have a very uneven surface from patching, for example. Rollers with steel frames and lots of tines are sturdier and stiffer than ones with just caps on the ends, and those sealed ends keep the paint on the roller cover.

Before using a new roller cover, use a piece of painter’s tape to remove loose lint. As for the paint, be sure to check out the smoothness scores in our interior paint ratings. They indicate whether marks from roller, brushes, or runs are obvious once the paint dries.

Why Do You Need A Car Accident Lawyer

Why is My Car Accident Settlement Taking So Long?

It depends on the case when it comes to knowing how long it will take for a car accident case to settle. Occasionally, a car accident settlement can take a long time due to unforeseen circumstances. Every car accident case is determined either by an out-of-court settlement or by trial. Either way, it is possible to take a long time. Here are some factors that can cause a car accident settlement to take a long time.

Trial

The majority of motor vehicle accident cases do not go to trial. Most personal injury attorneys avoid going to trial for the following three reasons.

An attorney knows what your car accident case is worth. Due to the experienced of an attorney, they have a good idea of what your injuries cost for medical treatment and damages. Your attorney can usually determine a fair value for your case without the input of a court.

A jury is unpredictable. When it comes to personal injury cases such as a car accident, juries have a hard time being objective. A jury may relate to one party over another or they may be unsympathetic to either party if they have experienced a car accident themselves. A good attorney does not want to leave their client’s chances up to the whim of a jury.

The cost to go to court is not worth it. Court proceedings are costly, and most attorneys are not willing to upfront the cost of a trial. Instead, an attorney will want to negotiate in a settlement.

In the event that one of the parties involved will not agree to settle, the case will go to trial. The time a trial takes varies from case to case. Typically, you can expect a personal injury case in a trial to take at least a year from the date of the accident to the conclusion of the trial.

Problems with the Case

Sometimes a car accident settlement can take a long time because of problems with the case. For example, proving that the other driver was 100 percent at fault may be difficult and take time if it is questioned at the time of the accident. Your attorney may need to take some time to investigate the accident and prove that the other driver is liable.

Another problem that could prolong a settlement of your case is if the insurer does not accept the evidence. In this case, your attorney may need to file suit and take the case to trial.

Big Settlement

If your case has the potential for a large payout, it may take a long time to settle. No insurance company likes to hand over large sums of money without a fight. For example, if your injuries are severe from the accident or involve lifelong disability, you could receive a large settlement. The insurance company, however, may delay the case in hopes that you will settle for less.

Common Causes of  Car Accidents & Injuries

The car accident lawyers help clients who sustained injuries in single and multiple car accidents. Whether your crash involved a head-on, rear-end, or side-impact collision, They protect your legal rights and help you recover financial compensation from the party who caused your accident.

Some of the most common reasons for Denver car accidents include

  • Impaired driving
  • Reckless driving
  • Distracted driving
  • Negligence
  • Road hazards
  • Vehicle failure or defect
  • Trucks and busses
  • Failure to yield

Pain and Suffering Multiplier

The multiplier method is an equation frequently used by insurance companies and is a common way to calculate pain and suffering damages. You add up all actual damages (also called special damages) and multiply that number by a number between 1.5 to 5. The number by which you multiply is called the “multiplier,” which indicates the degree of seriousness of your pain and suffering and any other general damages you suffered.

For example, if you sustained serious injuries, the multiplier should be close to 5, and it can possibly go higher (6 or 7) if your injuries are very serious. Use FindLaw’s Damages Estimate Worksheet to determine the seriousness of your pain and suffering damages. Here are some factors to consider in determining the appropriate multiplier for your pain and suffering:

  • The obviousness of the other driver’s fault
  • Seriousness of your injuries (e.g., permanent disability)
  • Clear proof of pain and suffering based on verified documents
  • Period of recovery

Keep in mind that the amount calculated with the multiplier method is an estimate – there’s no guarantee that you will receive that amount. If you apply a high multiplier without justification, the insurance company can deny your claim. So, make sure your calculations are supported by accurate facts and documentation.

Sample Multiplier Calculation

Here’s a sample scenario to help illustrate how the multiplier method works in practice. While you were driving on a highway, a car behind you carelessly bumped into your vehicle. As a result, you hit your face on the steering wheel and sustained a broken nose and teeth. Not only do you need to undergo a surgery, you are now suffering from chronic pain. You can no longer eat and speak without feeling sharp pain and discomfort.

Your special damages, including medical expenses, lost wages, and other treatment bills, are $10,000. Your multiplier would most likely be close to 5 because you are suffering from broken bones and long-lasting disability. So, your total estimate of damages, including pain and suffering, would be: $10,000 (special damages) x 5.0 (multiplier) = $50,000.

Evidence of Pain and Suffering

Before you start calculating your damages, it’s important to remember that pain and suffering damages must be supported by evidence. In minor cases, medical records or doctor’s note may be sufficient. However, if it involves more serious injuries, you might need to provide witness testimonies, if available, and other supporting documents such as police report, medical treatment bills, and photos of your injuries. If you have no evidence of pain and suffering, the insurance company will assume you didn’t experience it.

How to Dispute Fault for a Car Accident

If you’re involved in a car crash in one of the many fault-based car insurance states, and an insurance company (either yours or another driver’s) denies your claim because they wrongfully consider you to be at fault for the car accident, you need to immediately notify the insurance company — via phone and in writing via a follow-up letter — that you dispute their finding of fault.

If the insurance company’s determination is based on the fact that you received a traffic violation in connection with the accident, or if the insurer is basing its conclusion on the police report issued in the wake of the incident, you must fight the ticket in court and/or attempt to speak with the investigating officers to present your side of the story. If you disagree with the police report, you may even be able to get it amended.

Often, voicing your disagreement will result in further investigation that could lead to revised findings. At the very least, it begins to create a record of your disagreement that may be important further down the line.

Some insurance companies have internal policies regarding disputed fault investigations, and you may be asked to give a statement or present your side of the story to an insurance adjuster. It is important to know your rights in these situations, as you don’t want to make any kind of statement that may hinder your ability to recover should your claim proceed to the lawsuit phase. If you are disputing liability, it may make sense to get a lawyer involved on your side, even if just in an advisory capacity.

Who is eligible for pain and suffering in a car accident claim?

Pain and suffering is a catch-all term. Legally, it’s known as general damages. Your general damages are the non-financial losses you suffered—anything from emotional anguish to physical pain. Permanent injuries, disabilities, and an inability to work are all losses that count under this category.

Basically: if you have losses that go beyond your medical bills and lost work time, you are probably eligible for pain and suffering.

How much money should I ask for pain and suffering?

Because pain and suffering is not based on actual financial costs, it’s hard to quantify an exact amount to pay. But insurance companies have come up with a formula to try to do so.

There are three parts to this formula:

  • They start with the amount you’re already owed. That means adding up all your medical costs, car repairs, and other hard costs. This is the easy part of the equation.
  • Then they try to “rate” the severity of your situation. If this sounds hard, it is. And it’s very subjective. But there is some logic to it. For example, living with pain for several months is bad, but living with pain for the rest of your life is worse. And if you’re left unable to walk, that might be even worse still. Based on how severe your suffering has been, they assign a number to it between 1 and 5.
  • Then the starting cause is multiplied by the rating. For example, if you had $50,000 in medical costs and other hard costs, and your suffering was rated at about a 3, then the pain and suffering damages should come to about $150,000 (3 x $50,000 = $150,000).

This system is far from perfect, but it tends to work: people who have suffered more get paid a lot more money. But you still have to prove your case. Unfortunately, insurance companies are notorious for undervaluing pain and suffering damages. This is why it’s so important to have a lawyer represent you.

Shop For Kitchen Faucet With Ease And Reliability

Kitchen Faucet Reviews

Unfortunately, I lack the time and the budget to get each and every faucet in the market, try it out and put up a well thought out kitchen faucet review. Nevertheless, I will be testing new faucets every now and then, uploading my take on various designs and styles. My hope is to create a meeting place for homeowners, designers and interior decorators, who can interact and share ideas, find inspiration and eventually buy a kitchen faucet of their liking. Every single faucet on this site is rated on various criteria such as functionality, design, warranty, extras, durability and more. It is my goal to provide a diverse and detailed range of reviews, with faucets in every conceivable budget range, starting from the lowest of lows to the designer end.

Feel free to browse around the site. You will find plenty of information on kitchen faucets starting from styling, to repair and maintenance. Plus, you can use my concise buying guide to select an exact kitchen faucet style and design, suited to your existing or soon-to-be kitchen. Also, feel free to leave comments and suggestions anywhere on the site, it will only help me improve my site and serve the community better

If you are just starting to shop around for a kitchen faucet, one thing is going to become clear to you early on: There are a lot of brands and products to choose from. When it comes to choosing a kitchen faucet, there are several conditions and features that you will want to keep in mind. For example, there are essentially two major types of faucets, these being deck-mounted faucets and wall-mounted faucets. You will also want to choose between one-handle faucets or two-handle faucets. There are also a number of different finishes, including bronze, chrome, nickel, and stainless steel.

The mid-range price tag means you are getting a solid faucet with a number of features, easy installation, and much more. Delta Faucet has a good reputation with their products. This faucet, which is ideal for vintage-style kitchens, is a good example of what we are talking about. The touch-clean spray holes and diamond seal technology means a faucet that provides performance and durability for a long time.

Moen is another brand name with a good reputation among contractors, homeowners, interior design experts, and others. Moen 7594ESRS offers motion sense technology, which makes using the faucet a snap. The faucet is also AC adapter powered, which means you can choose to run your faucet sensors on either AAA batteries (six total), or with the AC adapter that will be included with your purchase.

The best kitchen faucets

The workhorse kitchen faucet is often taken for granted — until it breaks. Just think of how frequently you and other household members use it to wash your hands, get a drink, scrub vegetables, rinse dishes, wet sponges, and more. Ideally, you want one that stands up to everyday use.

Choosing a kitchen faucet may seem like a mundane task, but it’s actually important. You want the right kind to fit your needs and your kitchen’s decor, and you don’t want to simply opt for the cheapest model.

Valve Control: This is the mechanism that turns your faucet on and off, and adjusts the temperature of the water. Single-handle designs use one lever to control both temperature and flow, while double-handles have two (each handle controlling either the hot or cold water supply). Touch and motion-activated designs are convenient in a lot of ways, but they are dependent on a power source for their sensor.

Spout style: Choose from revolving or stationary, regular (steady stream) or two-mode (regular and spray), low arc (3 to 8 inches above the top of the sink), or high arc (also known as gooseneck, which is more than 8 inches above the top of the sink) models.

Spray head: The sprayer can be separate from and next to the faucet, or at the end of the spout. The latter type is either pull-down (often on taller faucets) or pull-out (which sometimes includes much of the spout itself).

Best Types of Kitchen Faucets

The importance of having a good faucet in the kitchen cannot be overemphasized. In fact, any small problem with the faucet is enough to cause a significant amount of inconvenience to its users. This is the reason why home or establishment owners have to work hand in hand with professional contractors when planning a highly functional kitchen that is not prone to damage and other issues. Part of planning a functional kitchen is the installation of a good faucet

However, searching and determining the perfect faucet for your type of kitchen may prove to be daunting. To make this process a lot easier for you, we have the best kitchen faucets reviews for you to check out. Spoiler alert: You may fall in love with more than one faucet, so choose wisely

This faucet is perfect for people looking to have a faucet endowed with a metropolitan minimalistic design which is capable of accommodating tight backsplashes. Its visual angularity works beautifully with its clean, sleek and modern look. Everything about it never fails to enhance the interior surrounding where it will be installed.

It has a pull-out spray head mechanism along with its 1.8 gpm that gives you the chance to adjust the amount of water that goes out from its spray head. Plus, its toggle feature also enables people to toggle between a stream mode and a spray mode.

Delta Faucet Essa 91130 has all the basics that make faucets capable of giving the best cleaning experience for its users. There is more to its function rather than its form as it also ensures good sink access. It also boasts of easy clean features. This one is available in four different types of finish, with each design suitable for a 3-hole or 1-hole sink

Choosing the right kitchen faucet

The fit: Start by examining how many holes are on your sink or countertop. This will determine the kinds of faucets you’re able to choose from. Deck plates are used to cover up old holes, allowing you to go with a newer one-hole faucet, but more homeowners are choosing the clean look of a faucet without a deck plate.

The function: A good faucet is about much more than just looks – it needs to keep up with you in the kitchen and work the way you like. Test out different faucet styles to see what feels most comfortable. Do you like the straightforward function of separate hot and cold handles, or do you find it easier to use single-handle faucets? Would you really appreciate the convenience of a hands-free faucet, or are you looking for something more classic?

The finish: Basic faucets are the standard polished chrome, but there are so many more possibilities once you start to look around. Bronze and black finishes add drama and sophistication to a kitchen and brushed nickel while unpolished chrome finishes are sleek and modern. You can also get kitchen faucets with a beautiful slate finish.

The aesthetic: Instead of the standard side sprayer, did you know you could choose a faucet with a pull-down spray wand? Homeowners with minimalist kitchens love the clean design of these double-duty faucets.

The height: Chefs and foodies tend to choose faucets with a high arc – a faucet that’s 8-10 inches above the sink – so they have plenty of room to lift pots and dishes in and out of the sink.

The Plumber: Down and out over kitchen faucet choices

I was looking to upgrade to a new kitchen faucet and wanted a faucet with a built-in spray head. I always called that type faucet a “pull-out” but now I’m finding out that there is a “pull-down” style as well. What is the difference?

For kitchen faucets with built in spray heads I’ll break your question down to three types and give some advantages to each style. First, pull-out spray: This type pulls out horizontally and features a larger hand grip for easy control. Also is great for filling things like tea pots and pet bowls.

Finally, spring-loaded: This semi-professional style looks like a faucet you may see in a busy professional kitchen. The spout is basically a flexible spring and can be moved in every direction. So, if you’re not sure about pull-down or pull-out, a spring-loaded can give you a new twist on your faucet choices.

We have a large master bathroom with a walk-in shower complete with a seat. For years I wanted to add a steam unit to this shower and figure now is the time. What are some bathroom basics to consider when adding a steam unit?

First, you’ll be introducing extra moisture into the bathroom area and that moisture needs to be removed. So, work with your contractor to check if your bathroom fan and fresh air intake can handle the additional moisture. If not, exhaust fan upgrades may be required.

How To Find The Right Carpet Flooring For Your Home

What to Know Before Buying Carpet

Buying carpet for the first time can seem overwhelming, but when you know all the pros and cons of the most common carpet styles and fibers-as well as a few translations of showroom lingo-it’s a task that any homeowner can tackle with finesse. The carpet styles we’re highlighting here can be installed wall to wall, or ordered in a specific size with bound edges to be used as an area rug (a great solution for oddly shaped rooms). Professionals are better suited to discussing your needs for specialty rugs, such as Orientals, so you’ll probably want to visit a special retailer for these kinds of purchases.

Two kinds of construction are most common when it comes to rugs: tufted and woven. Most carpets are tufted, consisting of rows of machine-punched yarns held together by adhesive and backing, and they last between five and seven years. Woven carpets, on the other hand, are known for their long lifespan: 20 to 30 years, thus making them more expensive than tufted options. The first thing to do when shopping for carpet is to ask for a sample to identify its style of pile, or the yarn that was used to make the carpet. If the yarn has been sheared, it’s known as “cut” pile, which is different from “loop” pile, a kind of yarn that’s been left in its original form

HOW TO EXPERTLY CLEAN AN AREA OR SHAG RUG

Samples can help you understand how high the pile of a carpet is, as deeper pile can feel softer to the touch, but a short pile is easier to care for. You’ll glean even more information from the carpet’s label, which lists the fiber content and where it was made, as well as other details as required by law. Most of the styles and fibers listed in the following guidelines are used in both woven and tufted carpets, and understanding their differences can help you shop for the best option for your home.

In addition to the pile, you’ll also want to ask about a carpet’s padding, which can help offset ground-in dirt and even absorb sound. You’ll need to lay down the proper padding before installing an area rug, but most floor-to-floor carpets should be installed by professionals, as they’re able to disguise seams as best as possible while properly fitting carpet to padding as well. When working with professionals, you’ll notice that carpet is often sold by the square yard, not the square foot-you’ll have to divide the price by nine for a per-square-foot quote. If you’d like to see what the carpet looks in your home, try asking for a “roll-cut” sample, which is a piece of carpet cut from the lot you would actually purchase, as the coloring on the sample may be different from the final product. You’ll also have to clean the carpet properly to keep the original coloring intact-check the manufacturer’s instructions, and start with a weekly once-over using a vacuum with a rotating head. For delicate carpets, such as hand-woven or hand-tufted, use a vacuum without a rotating head. A professional can steam-clean synthetic and wool carpet if needed.

Common Cuts of Pile to Know

The carpet’s pile can determine how it looks in your home, and more importantly, how it feels underfoot. Pile can be short and sturdy, or it can be shaggy and soft-the following pile varieties are the most commonly used by carpet manufacturers. We’re sharing details about how each variety feels, plus how well the product holds up under normal wear and tear over the years.

Tips for Carpet Replacement

No matter how kind your occupants are to the carpet, eventually you’ll face the arduous task of replacing it at minimal expense, time investment, disruption and health effects.

Get Out the Elbow Grease

Take a proactive stance toward potential health concerns and thoroughly vacuum the flooring you plan to replace. This will root out dirt, dust and biological debris that would otherwise go flying once the flooring installer starts to tear up the carpet.

“When you’re removing carpet, nobody’s thinking of cleaning it,” says Jeff Bishop, administrator of Clean Care Seminars, Inc. “Maintenance stops and you get a buildup of pollutants that tend to be aerosolized in the removal process.”

One recent investigation in Tampa, FL, involved students who frequently developed respiratory problems by mid-week, recovered over the weekend, and became sick again the following week.

Make a Game Plan

Once the old carpet is clean, coordinate with your contractor, flooring installer, and other key players. Plan around occupants’ schedules to minimize the number of people you’ll displace, and choose the quickest, most painless way to remove partitions and other items.

Is carpet a bad idea for flooring in our house?

REASONS TO SELECT CARPET FOR YOUR NEXT PROJECT

Spring is always a good time to spruce up your home or to revamp the house interior. Most people simply resort to the dreaded annual decluttering and deep spring cleaning, but there are those who are already “window shopping” online for new paint colors or a colorful plush carpet to change the look of their bedrooms, living room or family room. They are eagerly coming up with ideas on how best to remodel their home. So, we can all agree that a dream renovation project renders the perfect opportunity for folks to choose and buy new carpeting.

The Instant Home Changer

Carpets are a great way to completely transform your interior. With the vast choice of patterns, yarns, colors and fibers, you can refurbish your floorings relatively cheap and achieve a dream new look for your living spaces. So, whether you are replacing old carpeting or you are carpeting a brand new remodeled room or home; installing a soft floor covering will instantly alter the overall appearance of your home interior.

Promote a Cozy Feeling at Home

There is nothing like walking barefoot on a plush carpet and enjoying the snug feeling without the need to look for your misplaced slippers. Carpets are the ultimate booster of comfort and coziness. They are warm in the cold months and can give your dwelling an unmatchable luxurious feel. You wouldn’t sit by the fire on a bare parquet floor, would you?

Environmentally-Friendly

This is a little farfetched–but they do have proven insulation properties. Carpets keep your heating bills low and save you money in the process. By not wasting energy, like so many poorly insulated homes, you undoubtedly contribute to the environmental cause. A carpeted house keeps the heat in better and requires less energy to stay warm for longer. Modern carpet technology has evolved and improved over time to produce hardy and long lasting floor coverings. While all carpets are not easy to recycle, it is only good and rather eco-friendly that carpet lovers can enjoy them for longer.

Vulnerability Proofing Medium

Anyone can slip on a shiny hardwood floor, but children and older people are more prone to lose their footing. Carpets not only provide good traction, but will also soften the blow if a toddler trips over and falls.

Secrets to Keep Your Carpet Looking New

Carpets get dirty—it’s a fact of life. But if you just let the problems pile up, those snags, spills, and everyday accidents can make your carpets look old and dingy. Follow these proper maintenance tips and damage-control strategies to keep your carpeted flo

Vacuum Regularly

It’s obvious that vacuuming keeps your carpets clean, but this common chore is also the key to ensuring they stay looking like new. Dirt has abrasive qualities, and when it’s repeatedly ground into the carpet by everyday foot traffic, it can actually erode the backing over time. Vacuuming once a week (twice a week in busy areas) can remove up to 75 percent of the dirt and debris and prevent your carpet from aging before its time.

Soak Up Spills

Spills are inevitable, but how you clean them makes all the difference. The most important carpet commandments to keep in mind are to work quickly and never rub. Dab cleaning solution onto the trouble spot immediately—the longer you wait, the harder it will be to remove the stain. Then, blot with paper towels or a clean cloth, as this gently puts a small amount of pressure on the liquid, helping to soak it up instead of letting it set in. Remember to blot from the outside in to prevent the spill from spreading.

Choose the Right Vacuum

It’s imperative that you choose the right vacuum for your household needs. Do you have kids or pets? Carpeted stairs? Because no model excels at all types of cleaning, it might be wise to invest in more than one vacuum so you can handle all your cleaning challenges. A cordless handheld vacuum can be convenient for stairs, for example, while an upright is great for large carpeted rooms.

Trim Snags

Carpets, particularly Berbers, are bound to snag eventually—especially if you have kids or pets. Rule number one: Never pull a snag. This will inevitably make the problem worse, as it’s likely that you’ll tear the carpet away from the backing. Instead, grab a pair of scissors and trim the snag at the base to prevent further damage.

Got a question about carpet or flooring?

Where do I start?

If you’re looking to update a room in your home but unsure where to start, begin by visiting our online product selector. This simple tool will run you through a series of questions to better understand what you are looking for such as the room you are wanting to update, the style you are hoping to achieve and of course, your budget. Once completed, we will send you a selection of our beautiful products, perfectly suited to your needs.

What can I do on the website?

Whether you’re updating an existing space or selecting product for your brand-new home – Carpet Court have a fantastic selection of online tools to assist you along the way

How do I request a quote?

To receive a quote on Carpet Courts’ range of flooring or window furnishings, simply book a free home measure and quote online and a friendly member of your local Carpet Court store will be in touch to organise a time and date that suits you. It’s also great to know that your free home measure and quote is obligation free.

How does the online pricing work?

Online pricing provided on all flooring is indicative and should only be used as a guide. Furthermore, the pricing provided for each room size is based on a pre-set size and does not include underlay or installation. To receive an accurate quote for your installation, request a quote online and a member of your local Carpet Court store will be in touch.

Do I need to come into a store when selecting my products?

No, there is no need to come into store when selecting products, this can be done online. However, it may be a good idea to visit your local store before making any purchases, so you can view and touch the product. Of course, there is no obligation to purchase when you do come in store, so do not hesitate to visit us any day to browse our fantastic range of products on offer.

Reasons To Use A House Cleaning Checklist Every Time You Clean

How do cleaning companies ensure that they do a quality job?

So you’ve taken the leap and hired a cleaning service to clean your home. How will your new cleaning crew ensure that they’ve done a great job and that you are happy with their service?

The number one reason people drop their cleaning company or switch to a new one is due to a decrease in the quality of their house cleaning they receive over time. Customers love that first cleaning; it was spectacular! But then they feel that the quality went downhill from there. An experienced, professional cleaning company will give a lot of attention to doing a good job for you and will verify your satisfaction over and over because they don’t want to lose your business. When you ask your cleaning company about their quality control program, you should expect to hear something similar to ours.

Here are some specific steps we take:

  • Train all yours cleaners to clean your home following our proven method to consistently deliver a high quality cleaning. We never assume that a new employee can clean well. Our new hires study our cleaning techniques and practice them in different scenarios, working closely with one of our certified trainers. Residential cleaning business all over the U.S. and Canada come to us to learn our Perfect Maintenance Cleaning methods so that they can improve their quality and efficiency. Our owner literally wrote the Perfect Maintenance Cleaning book that professional services use to train their cleaners.
  • Do house checks. Members of our management team perform random house inspections after a home has been cleaned so that every cleaner’s work is checked periodically. We’ll provide feedback or recommend additional training, if necessary.
  • Make it easy for customers to tell us how we’re doing. We encourage comments and offer three ways to reach us: text, phone call, and email. We also leave behind a quality score sheet or comment card at every cleaning. All feedback is reviewed by our Operations Manager who shares it with our cleaners directly—both the compliments and the opportunities for improvement. We believe that it’s our job—not the customers’—to give employee feedback caringly and constructively.
  • Act on any complaints we receive. Any complaints we get will guide the steps we take to re-train our cleaners or to remove them from our business if re-training fails.

Hiring: What Traits to Look For

In the beginning of your business, “the right people” are most likely to be you and any business partners you start your company with. It’s harder to hand off the cleaning work to someone else when you’re starting out. We really had to do it ourselves in the beginning while we got the hang of our business and worked out our hiring process.

If you’re busy enough that you need to hire staff, here are the traits you should look for when hiring.

Previous Cleaning Experience

You can lose a lot of time and money training people who are new to cleaning and who might quit after a few months. It’s very physical, and it’s just hard for some people. Although you’ll probably need to hire some people who don’t have a lot of experience, try to look for people who do have cleaning experience and even want to make a career out of it. They already know how to do the job, they already understand what hard work it is, and they already know they like cleaning.

Independent, Self-Motivated and Hard-Working

Cleaners go out into the field on their own, so housecleaning is a job for people who are highly independent and self-motivated. You definitely need people who like to work on their own, because you are working alone most of the time. You might have a partner, but you’re not working side by side. So your staff need to be comfortable working alone and able to do their work without a supervisor standing over their shoulder. They also need to be able to work hard physically, because the job is physically demanding.

Friendliness

Although your ideal cleaners are the kind of people who are comfortable working alone, it’s still important that they’re friendly too, as quite often they will communicate with clients on your behalf. In many ways, your cleaners are the face of your company—to your clients, they are the company. It’s essential that they make a good impression.

Commitment to the Job and Loyalty to the Clients

Your staff must be able to commit to showing up every day without the other commitments in their lives getting in the way. You have to be committed to serving your clientele,” says Katie. “If you don’t show up, there’s nobody else who can step in. I had a few staff with such a high level of commitment that they would genuinely be upset if they got sick. They felt bad that their clients that day weren’t going to get their houses cleaned.

Training Tips to Get Your Cleaning Service Employees on the Right Track

Now that they’re hired, it’s likely that the majority of applicants for entry-level cleaning jobs will need training. This isn’t necessarily a disadvantage; in fact, you may prefer to handle this yourself since hiring individuals without professional cleaning experience lets you train them to clean your way.

If you think you can’t afford to spend time on training, think again–can you afford not to adequately train your employees? Do you really want them interacting with customers or cleaning homes and offices when you haven’t told them how you want things done?

These tips will help you maximize your training efforts:

  • Find out how people learn best. Delivering training isn’t a one-size-fits-all proposition. People absorb and process information differently, and your training method needs to be compatible with their individual preferences. Some people can read a manual, others prefer a verbal explanation, and still others need to see a demonstration. In a group training situation, your best strategy is to use a combination of methods; when you’re working one-on-one, tailor your delivery to fit the needs of the person you’re training.
  • Use simulation and role-playing to train, practice and reinforce. One of the most effective training techniques is simulation, which involves showing an employee how to do something and then allowing them to practice it in a safe, controlled environment. If the task includes interpersonal skills, let the employee role play with a co-worker to practice what they should say and do in various situations.
  • Be a strong role model. Don’t expect more from your employees than you’re willing to do. You’re a good role model when you do things the way they should be done all the time. Don’t take shortcuts you don’t want your employees to take or behave in any way that you don’t want them to behave. On the other hand, don’t assume that simply doing things the right way is enough to teach others how to do things. Role modeling is not a substitute for training. It reinforces training. If you only role model but never train, employees aren’t likely to get the message.
  • Look for training opportunities. Once you get beyond basic orientation and job skills training, you need to constantly be on the lookout for opportunities to enhance the skills and performance levels of your people.
  • Make it real. Whenever possible, use real-life situations to train–but avoid letting customers know they’ve become a training experience for employees.
  • Anticipate questions. Don’t assume that employees know what to ask. In a new situation, people often don’t understand enough to formulate questions. Anticipate questions and answer them in advance.

Give Your Employees the Power to Upgrade Customer Service

Although ensuring a thorough cleaning job is the best way to provide excellent customer service, your employees should feel confident in going above and beyond. By allowing your staff to give your clients “extras,” such as a complimentary carpet deep clean or a ten percent discount, you are increasing their ability to deliver amazing service.

Your cleaning business training should also include tactics for providing great customer service, such as:

– Taking notes on client preferences and passing those along to team members.

– Having answers to client questions.

– Returning phone calls, emails, and other correspondence promptly.

– Allowing time gaps between jobs to minimize arriving late to a task or needing to leave early to be on time elsewhere.

– Showing up to the job in uniform and with all the necessary tools and equipment (plus backups as necessary.)

How to prepare for your first professional house cleaning experience

From a couple of must-dos, to treating your house cleaner with respect; here is everything you need to know about being fully prepared for your first house cleaning service by a professional maid.

Don’t Let Anything Get in Your Cleaner’s Way

You can’t expect your cleaning professional to do a satisfactory job if they haven’t been given a fair chance to do so. In other words, it is your responsibility to ensure that there is no clutter or untidiness around the house that will hinder their cleaning process. This means picking up stuff from the floor and tidying up surfaces so that they can be cleaned efficiently.

It should be noted that some cleaning services include tasks that go beyond basic tidying up; however, for those that do not, it conveys a certain level of respect when you do your bit to make the cleaner’s job a little easier. Moreover, the help you hire should not feel like they are being taken advantage of when doing things that aren’t part of their job description become a habit.

Give Clear and Concise Instructions

A professional maid understands that their job is to clean your house; however, every home and family is unique and therefore, the requirements differ. Along with this, you may have a set of rules or boundaries that you would like the cleaner to follow such as knocking before entering a bedroom or bathroom.

Along with this, some homeowners have specific preferences where home cleaning is concerned; for example, you can request for the use of eco-friendly cleaning products or simply supply the hired professional with your choice of cleaners. This, of course, is something that should be discussed with the professional prior to their arrival. If you have any other instructions, be clear and concise when politely explaining them to the cleaner.

Put Valuables Away

Firstly, it pays to hire a maid from a reputable cleaning agency wherein employees are thoroughly vetted, as well as insured and bonded. On the other hand, from a cleaner’s perspective, they are not always comfortable working in a house where money or valuables are left lying around. This is because if you were to misplace something of value, they are likely to be the first ones to get blamed.

This is particularly true when a homeowner is hiring help for the first time, or dealing with a new maid. In other cases where clients and cleaners have formed a strong bond or close relationship over a long period of time, this doesn’t become a problem. Having said that, when hiring the services of a professional maid, it is your responsibility to make the cleaner feel comfortable on every occasion, and this includes securing valuables.

Choosing A Veterinarian For Your Pet

Common Myths about Surgery and Dogs

1. Myth: “My dog is too old for anesthesia”

Please do not let your neighbor, your friend or the internet tell you that your dog is too old or sick for anesthesia. And don’t be afraid to seek out an expert on the topic. Keep in mind, if your dog is that old, surgery is probably not being recommended for merely cosmetic reasons. Your veterinarian is probably talking about it because of a life or death situation, or a serious quality of life issue.

A thorough physical exam and blood work should always be performed before anesthesia. In older dogs, it may be wise to also take chest and belly radiographs, as well as an ECG to be safe. Some dogs may need to be stabilized prior to anesthesia, which may mean fixing blood work abnormalities, giving IV fluids, or giving a blood transfusion prior to anesthesia and surgery.

2. Myth: “Surgery is painful”

This is actually a true statement. However, surgical pain should not be ignored in 2015. We have many safe pain medications to choose from to treat pain before, during and after surgery. We should also remember that depending on what dogs’ conditions are, they are most likely already in pain, which will continue to stay the same or worsen without surgery. The goal of surgery is often to decrease pain.

3. Myth: “There is no point if there is no cure”

This mostly relates to dogs with a tumor. It is a matter of opinion and expectations. And it’s a very personal decision. Without the benefit of a biopsy, we don’t know whether a mass is cancerous or benign until it is removed and analyzed. Even when a mass is cancerous, it doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s the end of the road. Ultimately, your decision should not be based only on quantity of life (survival), but mostly on quality of life.

Ironically, sometimes, the situation doesn’t depend on whether a mass is benign or cancerous, but on where it is located. A perfectly benign mass blocking the windpipe, the esophagus (the tube between the mouth and the stomach) or the urethra (the tube between the bladder and the outside world) will have life-threatening consequences.

4. Myth: “My dog will not survive confinement”

Confinement is often required after surgery. The time required depends on the procedure. Confinement may be in a crate, an upside down baby/puppy play pen, a small room, or part of a room. The larger the dog, the larger the area can be – within reason of course. It may seem cruel to some, but preventing jumping and running is critical to allow proper healing. Outdoors, dogs in recovery need to be under supervision and on a leash for just enough time to eliminate. Dogs don’t know what is best for them. You should.

Minimizing the Risks of Anesthesia in Dogs

Anesthesia is like any medical procedure—there are benefits and risks, and death can occur under anesthesia. Approximately one in 1,000 healthy cats and one in 2,000 healthy dogs die under anesthesia each year. While any anesthetic-related deaths are unacceptable, these incidence rates are actually quite low. But of course, there’s still plenty of room for improvement. One of the reasons we still see deaths related to anesthetic procedures is because not all practices are actively taking all of the steps necessary to reduce anesthetic risk.

The Anesthetic Process

Anesthesia occurs in several steps, with opportunities at each step to minimize risks for your pet.  Below I present a simple outline of the steps involved in anesthesia. 

  • Assessment.  Anesthesia starts with an assessment of your pet’s health.  The veterinary medical team will assemble any needed medical history and lab results, and perform a physical exam.  Here is where they could be assigning an anesthetic risk factor and determining if any specific interventions might be helpful to reduce anesthetic risk for your pet.  Complications such as low blood pressure, shallow breathing, low body temperature, slow heart rate, and delayed recovery from anesthesia can all be anticipated and planned for during the assessment stage.  An anesthesia plan can provide guidance for prevention, recognition and treatment of anesthetic complications.
  • Pre-anesthetic medications.  “Pre-meds”, as they’re referred to in the hospital, have many benefits. Amongst other functions, they provide preventive pain management, reduce stress, and minimize the necessary dose of other anesthetic drugs.  Pre-meds are specifically chosen for your pet, based on his or her unique anesthesia profile.
  • IV catheter.  This allows for the administration of IV drugs and fluids, as well as the IV induction of anesthesia, which is safer and less stressful than mask induction.  Presence of an IV catheter is especially important if an emergency drug is needed to treat a complication.
  • Pre-oxygenation and IV induction.  Pre-oxygenation charges the lungs with oxygen and it, along with the IV induction step, promotes a smooth, controlled transition to unconsciousness.
  • Endotracheal intubation.  Placing an endotracheal, or “breathing”, tube protects the airway and lungs from accidental inhalation of foreign material such as stomach contents, saliva, blood, water, cleaning paste, or tartar. Such a tube is also necessary to maintain anesthesia with inhalant gases.
  • Maintenance of anesthesia with patient monitoring and support.  At this point the patient is unconscious and the procedure is underway.  Isoflurane or sevoflurane anesthetic gases are the most appropriate agents for maintenance of anesthesia.  Clinical research indicates they both are equally safe and effective.  Monitoring of your pet is crucial to assess vital signs and enable recognition and prevention of complications, or timely treatment of them should they arise.  Patient support might include administration of IV fluids and drugs to prevent or treat complications and warming of the patient to prevent loss of body temperature.

Considering surgery for your dog? Take these 4 steps

If your veterinarian is recommending a procedure for your senior dog, it’s because she or he believes that it will help your dog feel better. (And maybe live longer too!)

Here are specific steps to take to help you determine what’s best for your dog:

  • Have a frank discussion with your vet about the procedure and share any concerns you have.
  • Ask your vet to lay out the pros and cons of the surgery.
  • If you or your veterinarian feels uncomfortable about proceeding, you can ask for a referral to a specialty facility (usually a large, 24-hour hospital with specialty doctors and advanced equipment).
  • Please don’t write off the procedure because of the myth that your dog is “too old for surgery or anesthesia.”

Before Anesthesia

Prior to receiving anesthesia, your veterinarian will perform a thorough physical exam on your pet, review your pet’s medical history and discuss any risk factors. Your veterinarian may also perform blood tests on your pet to check for any indications of a developing medical problem or anesthetic risk. If you have any questions about your pet’s health or his or her anesthetic risk, ask your veterinarian for an explanation that will help you make an educated decision.

Prior to anesthesia, your pet will likely be given a pre-anesthetic sedative to reduce his or her stress and ease the process. An intravenous catheter is usually placed to allow administration of fluids and medications. The anesthetic may be delivered by gas inhalation (using a gas anesthesia machine), intravenous infusion, or a combination of the two.

During Anesthesia

While under anesthesia, your pet will receive monitoring and care comparable to what you’d receive if you underwent anesthesia. This may include intravenous fluids and/or medications to support your pet’s circulation and blood pressure; an endotracheal tube inserted into your pet’s trachea (windpipe) to deliver the anesthetic gas and provide oxygen to your pet’s lungs; pulse oximetry to measure the oxygenation of your pet’s blood; blood pressure monitoring; temperature monitoring and warming blankets to prevent hypothermia (low body temperature); and electrocardiography (ECG, also called EKG) to monitor your pet’s heart.

After Anesthesia

Once the procedure is done and it’s time for your pet to wake up from the anesthesia, your pet will likely be placed in a quiet, semi-dark cage or kennel to recover. Pets are closely monitored during this time to make sure that they are recovering normally and that care is provided quickly if there are any problems. Pads and blankets are used to keep your pet warm during the recovery, but it’s not uncommon to see a pet shivering while they recover from anesthesia; however, this doesn’t necessarily mean your pet is cold. Some pets may also vocalize (whine, bark or meow) during recovery. The endotracheal tube is removed when your pet is awake enough to swallow normally. Fluids and/or medications may be continued through recovery, depending on your pet’s condition.

Preparing for surgery

Before the procedure, ask your veterinarian if you can give medications in the morning — some may be needed, but some can be skipped. Also ask if you should drop off your pet’s medications or food the day of surgery. It’s always betterDog preparing for surgeryfor your pet to eat his normal food, whether it’s generic food or a special diet. You may have been told how much confinement your pet will need after surgery, and what that entails; please make sure you have a room, a play pen or a crate prepared for the day your pet comes home.

The morning of surgery

You will need to drop your pet off early in the morning, even though surgery may not occur until late morning or the afternoon. Why is that?  There are multiple reasons, depending on your pet’s specific situation. Your veterinarian may wish to:

  • Run a physical exam
  • Run blood work
  • Place an IV catheter
  • Administer IV fluids
  • Start specific medications
  • Take X-rays
  • Perform an EKG
  • Calculate anesthesia drug doses

Things To Remember When Installing Ceiling Fans Installation

Ceiling Fan Installation and Usage Tips

Ceiling fan performance and energy savings rely heavily on the proper installation and use of the ceiling fan. Here are a few tips to ensure quality and product performance.

Choosing the Appropriate UL-Rated Electrical Box

Make sure that you use the appropriate UL-listed metal box, marked “For Use With Ceiling Fans.” This outlet box is mounted above the ceiling and also is the point where the fan is attached. This box houses all wiring needed to operate and connect the ceiling fan. If you are replacing a ceiling fixture, most likely you will need to replace the electrical box.

Mounting the Ceiling Fan

If possible, the ceiling fan should be anchored to a ceiling joist. In the case that the joist is not located in the center of the room, a special ceiling fan mounting bracket with spiked ends should be installed between joists. Keep in mind that ceiling fans can weigh as much as 50 pounds!

Balancing a Wobbly Fan

All fan blades should be balanced prior to shipment; however, if the fan is wobbly after installation, there are ways to fix it. First, make sure that all connections are properly aligned and tightly fastened. Check the alignment of the blades by holding a yardstick vertically along the edges; you may be able to gently bend a misaligned blade holder back into proper place. If all blades are aligned, a balancing kit can then be used to pinpoint the culprit. These kits are either provided within product packaging (e.g., balancing clips and blade weights) or can be sent by the manufacturer free of charge. View(link is external) a video with tips on fixing a wobbly fan.

Turn Off When not in the Room

Ceiling fans cool people, not rooms. If the room is unoccupied, turn off the ceiling fan to save energy.

How to Install a Ceiling Fan

Installing a ceiling fan is a good project for the do-it-yourselfer, as you can simply replace a traditional lighting fixture with a fan or fan-and-light kit. You can wire the fan’s light to be controlled by the light switch on the wall and allow the fan to be turned on manually by pulling a cord, install a second switch to control the fan, or purchase a unit operated by remote control.

You’ll need to ensure that the junction box to which you will connect your fan can support its weight (it should say “suitable for fan support”), that you have enough clearance between the fan blades and the ground (at least 7 feet), and that your fan is the appropriate size for your room. For more, see Sizing & Locating a Ceiling Fan.

Remove the old light fixture. (See How to Replace a Light Fixture for information about how to do so.)

Install a ceiling fan mounting bar. If the ceiling box is connected at its center to a bar hanger attached to two joists

If it is not, you will have to install a ceiling fan box with a mounting bar. Take out the old ceiling box, and insert the hanger bar for the mounting box into the ceiling hole. Ram the edges (or “feet”) of the bar toward the two ceiling joists by turning the center of the bar, and use a wrench to tighten the bar and embed the sides into the joists. Attach the ceiling box to the hanger.

Ceiling Fan Frequently Asked Questions

When it comes to ceiling fans I find my clients have a lot of questions, and are unsure about the many types of ceiling fans, installation techniques and what it all means for them. Here I have compiled FAQ’s that I get asked often, as well as some information that you will find informative.

How much do ceiling fans cost to run? A Ceiling Fan is cheap to run at about 2-3 cents per hour. Here’s a great link for calculating any appliance costs in Adelaide Calculate Appliance Running Costs. A Ceiling Fan will also aid in saving cooling costs when used in conjunction with home air conditioners.

What does the Summer/Winter switch do? This switch is found above the motor on the ceiling fan and sometimes labelled S and W. In the Summer position, the fan will blow cooling air down that you can feel. In the Winter position, the fan will turn in reverse. This blows warm air over the ceiling and down the walls.

What does the number of blades mean? The most common are 3, 4 or 5 blade fans. There’s not a lot of difference in air flow. A 5 blade fan has more drag and will require more power to run the fan. A 3 blade fan is usually a metal blade fan designed to push a lot of air for its size and thus can be a little noisy. A 4 blade fan tends to be a good compromise for air flow and efficiency. Very large fans may have more blades due to design and aesthetics.

Metal or Timber Blade Fan? A metal blade fan in most cases will push more air than a timber blade fan due to the blade angle and design. As a result they are a little noisier but work well in living areas and outside areas. A timber blade fan is quieter to run and well suited to sleeping areas, however they do not push as much air as a metal blade fan.

WHICH WAY SHOULD YOUR CEILING FAN SPIN AND OTHER HELPFUL COOLING TIPS

Summer is coming, and we can feel the sweat and see the high electric bills already! One way to lower the cost of running your air conditioning unit is also to use your ceiling fan. Ceiling fans circulate cooled air in a room to make people feel cooler. That means you can increase your thermostat by several degrees without causing a noticeable difference in comfort.

Many people don’t realize that you can save money in the summer by running your ceiling fan in conjunction with your air conditioner. With a ceiling fan running, you can feel about 5 degrees cooler. This means you can turn down your AC and lessen its running load. Before you turn your AC on in the shoulder seasons, try running your fan first and see if you can save even more money by avoiding AC for a couple more weeks or most waking hours. A typical central air conditioning unit uses about 3,500 watts of energy when running, while an average ceiling fan running on high uses only about 60 watts.

Which Direction Should Your Ceiling Fan Spin in Summer?

Most fans have a clockwise and counterclockwise setting, usually controlled by a small button or switch near the fan base. Each direction is appropriate for different seasons. However, because fan blades are also angled, we cannot tell you which direction works for which season, on your specific fan. You’ll have to do a small experiment.

Stand beneath your fan and turn it on. If you immediately feel a breeze, that is the summer setting. If you do not immediately feel a breeze, turn off the fan, and look for the small button to run the fan in the opposite direction. Take this opportunity to dust your fan. It’s often an overlooked task, but removing any particulates from the air in your home helps keep the air quality high while also cutting down on internal cleaning of the air ducts.

Ceiling Fans Keep People Cool, Not Rooms

What do we mean? Unlike a central AC unit that is cooling your home, a fan is creating a cooling effect. Fans will not lower the temperature; they make you feel cooler by circulating the air. A fan is like a gentle breeze, but if you think about it, your furniture doesn’t benefit from that feeling, only you do. That means when you leave a room, turn off the fan to save on your electric bill.

Helpful Tips For Purchasing A Ceiling Fan

That thing hanging from the ceiling that provides a cool breeze is an often overlooked part of most rooms of a house. However, if used correctly it can shave some serious dollars off of your energy bill each month, especially during the spring and summer months. So, when it’s time to purchase a new ceiling fan, we highly recommend spending a bit of time doing some research and finding one that checks off all of the following considerations

Airflow

This may sound obvious, but a ceiling fan that really provides adequate airflow and circulation is a must. What you may not know however, is that a ceiling fan’s airflow is measured in cubic feet per minute and the fan’s maximum airflow will be listed on the box.

Light Combos

Lots of ceiling fans on the market today incorporate some sort of lighting, if that’s something you prefer. While shopping, it’s important to think about the room the ceiling fan will be installed in and determine whether or not you need some extra overhead lighting.

Efficiency

As we mentioned above, a ceiling fan can really help you save on energy bills if you use it correctly, especially if you use it in conjunction with your air conditioning system. With that said, you’ll want to make sure you’re looking at ceiling fans that are Energy Star rated if it comes with a lighting kit, so be on the lookout for the little blue label.

Location

Did you know there are three main types of fans when it comes to the location where it will be installed? If you’re going to be installing the fan outside, you’ll want to look for one that is wet-rated as opposed to a dry-rated fan if it will only be used indoors. If it’s going to be installed somewhere in between or a room of the house with high humidity (like the bathroom or the laundry room), your best best is a damp-rated ceiling fan.

Types Of Electrical Wiring For Different Wiring Applications

Electrical Safety: Safety & Health for Electrical Trades

How Do You Control Hazards?

In order to control hazards, you must first create a safe work environment, then work in a safe manner. Generally, it is best to remove the hazards altogether and create an environment that is truly safe.

How Do You Create a Safe Work Environment?

A safe work environment is created by controlling contact with electrical voltages and the currents they can cause. Electrical currents need to be controlled so they do not pass through the body. In addition to preventing shocks, a safe work environment reduces the chance of fires, burns, and falls. You need to guard against contact with electrical voltages and control electrical currents in order to create a safe work environment

Make your environment safer by doing the following:

Treat all conductors—even “de-energized” ones—as if they are energized until they are locked out and tagged.

Lock out and tag out circuits and machines.

Prevent overloaded wiring by using the right size and type of wire.

Prevent exposure to live electrical parts by isolating them.

Prevent exposure to live wires and parts by using insulation.

Prevent shocking currents from electrical systems and tools by grounding them.

Prevent too much current in circuits by using overcurrent protection devices.

Lock out and tag out circuits and equipment

Create a safe work environment by locking out and tagging out circuits and machines. Before working on a circuit, you must turn off the power supply. Once the circuit has been shut off and de-energized, lock out the switchgear to the circuit so the power cannot be turned back on inadvertently. Then, tag out the circuit with an easy-to-see sign or label that lets everyone know that you are working on the circuit. If you are working on or near machinery, you must lock out and tag out the machinery to prevent startup. Before you begin work, you must test the circuit to make sure it is de-energized.

Lock-Out/Tag-Out Checklist

Lock-out/tag-out is an essential safety procedure that protects workers from injury while working on or near electrical circuits and equipment. Lock-out involves applying a physical lock to the power source(s) of circuits and equipment after they have been shut off and de-energized. The source is then tagged out with an easy-to-read tag that alerts other workers in the area that a lock has been applied.

Electrical Wire Size Required for Receptacles

What size electrical wire should you use when hooking up an electrical receptacle (wall plug or electrical outlet)? Here we explain the choice of No. 14 or No. 12 copper wire for 15A and 20A electrical circuits where receptacles are being wired.

This article series describes how to choose, locate, and wire an electrical receptacle in a home. Electrical receptacles (also called electrical outlets or “plugs” or “sockets”) are simple devices that are easy to install, but there are details to get right if you want to be safe.

What Size Electrical Wire Should I Use When Wiring an Electrical Outlet (Receptacle)?

The electrical wire used for the receptacle circuit must be the proper type in size (thickness or gauge) and number of conductors for the ampacity of the electrical circuit

The electrical circuit must be properly protected by the right fuse or circuit breaker

For a 15-Amp circuit use #14 copper wire (or #12 copper-clad aluminum wire). The fuse or circuit breaker feeding this circuit is rated for 15 amps.

For a 20-Amp circuit use #12 copper wire (or #10 copper-clad aluminum wire).The fuse or circuit breaker feeding this circuit is rated for 20 amps.

For a 30-Amp circuit use #10 copper wire and a fuse or circuit breaker rated for 30 Amps.

For other wire sizes and a complete wire size table see SE CABLE SIZES vs AMPS – separate article

Note1: it’s safe and OK to use a smaller (lower ampacity) fuse or circuit breaker, such as a 15-amp fuse protecting a circuit wired with #12 copper wire

Note2: it’s generally safe and OK to use a larger size electrical wire, and a larger wire size may in fact be required for longer wiring runs. Generally you want a 3% or less voltage drop across the wire from source to point of use. For the U.S., electrical wire sizes vs. circuit ampacity are given in National Electric Code Table 310-16

All You Need To Know About Electric Wiring and Rewiring

Electric wiring and rewiring is an important aspect of consideration when you are renovating your old home or building a new one. It is a complex and time-consuming process which ideally should be done by trained professionals. When you make the decision of wiring or rewiring your home or office, you can come across a number of choices to make.

You can select from the different types of wiring materials which are available and the different wiring installation processes. Here, we will discuss some of the most common aspects of wiring/rewiring starting from the signs through which you can tell whether rewiring is required or not along with the different types of electrical wirings and their corresponding installation processes.

Signs That Your House or Office Needs Rewiring

Before the electrical system in your house or office collapses or causes any serious problems because of bad wiring, there are certain signs for which you can look out to determine if the electrical wiring needs to be repaired or replaced.

These signs are listed below:

Damaged or frayed wires are the first thing that you should keep a look-out for. This kind of damage may be caused by rodents, heat, corrosion, or simply because of being old. The frayed wires can not only lead to further electrical problems like short circuiting but can also pose a serious threat of electrocution.

If your electrical switches or plugs become warm or hot during usage, it can indicate a problem with the wiring. Improper wiring can cause overheating and result in serious electrical problems.

If your circuit breaker keep tripping, it can also indicate a problem with the wiring of the house.

If you notice smoke coming out from any power socket or an electrical appliance, it can be due to faulty wiring of the house.

If you notice that some of your lights flicker or dim when certain high-power appliances are plugged in, this can also indicate a problem with the wiring. The wiring may not be able to handle the load of the high-power device resulting in flickering or dimming of lights.

If you notice any loose connections near the power sockets, switches, and wires, try tightening them to not let the wiring get damaged any further.

Different Types of Electrical Wirings

When you want to change the wiring of your home, you will have the choice of selecting from several kinds of wirings available

Non-Metallic Cables (NM Cables)

NM cables are the most common types of wires which are used in houses and residential buildings. They contain three types of wires distinguished by different colors.

Electricians

Finding a home electrician

Most homeowners call electricians in an emergency or if they’re building or remodeling. It’s important to research a contractor and find a skilled electrician before you need one. By building a rapport with an electrician, you can be sure that they will be there to help when you need their services. So, you’ll want to hire an electrician for regular inspections before an emergency takes place. A good electrical contractor will become familiar with your home’s systems and possibly discover emerging problems before they become major situations.

Hiring an electrician is an important decision because they work with critical home systems that affect nearly every aspect of the building and can cause significant inconvenience, damage or even house fires if the work goes wrong.

Up-to-date education: A reputable company will require staff to attend regular training courses and stay current on the National Electrical Code, which is amended every three years.

Pulling permits: A permit is usually required in most counties and from the power company any time you’re replacing a home’s main electrical equipment or doing a significant amount of rewiring. The cost of the permit is often included in your electrician’s bill, but be sure to ask. With the permit comes an inspection to ensure the work meets code.

Legitimate licensing: If your state requires electricians to be licensed, check that the license is current. Poor wire connections, overloaded circuits, improper grounding and broken safety elements on an electrical panel are just a few of the problems that can arise from bad workmanship. To check an electrician’s licensing. You should also protect yourself by verifying the hold the appropriate bonding and insurance, including general liability and workers’ compensation coverage.

Electrical Rough-in Tips

Whether your project is finishing a garage or a basement or building an addition, it’s important to get the rough-in wiring done right the first time. We talked with several pros and got advice on drilling holes, installing boxes and pulling cable. With these tips in hand, you’ll work faster, avoid disasters down the road and put a smile on the face of your electrical inspector.

Which electrical box works best?

Either plastic or fiberglass boxes will do the job, and each is completely code compliant. Some electricians prefer fiberglass models because they’re tougher, but others prefer the plastic models because they’re cheaper.

Special cable staples

Staples (and drilled holes) need to be at least 1-1/4 in. away from the edge of a framing member. In some cases, that means stacking wires on top of one another and using one staple to secure them. Most standard staples can handle two wires. Never install staples over multiple wires unless the staple is approved for it. The staple package should list how many wires it’s rated for. The staple shown here is good for up to four wires.

Auger nits and angle drills work best

A 3/4-in. spade bit will work OK for drilling the holes, but auger bits drill faster and require less effort. Choose a bit like this Milwaukee ship auger bit that will chew through nails. It’s easier to drill straight holes through the studs with a right-angle drill. You can rent right-angle drills by the day, or you could buy an angle attachment for your own drill.

Install plates before pulling wire

Electrical cables need to be set back 1-1/4 in. or more from the edge of a stud or wood-framing member to protect cables from wayward nails and screws. Install steel cable-protection plates over holes drilled closer to the edge. Keep several plates in your pouch while you’re drilling and install them right away so you don’t forget.

How To Evaluate The Event Videographer

Avoid These 4 Common Wedding Videography Service Pricing Mistakes

Wedding videography, but on a budget! Before your beautiful love story can be filmed like a movie, let’s make sure that you don’t fall into these costly traps. The overall wedding videography cost in will fluctuate, of course, depending on factors such as timelines and extra features. However, there is no need to remain blindsided or feel that a video package will break your bank! At Enchanted Celebrations, we completely tailor our package options to fit your budget and perfectly align with your vision. We’ll show you simple ways to avoid common videography service pricing mistakes through the following four instances, so you can still have the wedding video you’re dreaming about!

BEWARE OF THE HIDDEN CHARGES

Travel fees? Footage hours? Timelines? Oh my! To beware of hidden costs, remember first off that the location of your wedding venue, far or near, can play a role in the final wedding videography cost. In addition to travel, the length of time that your videographer will actually shoot for will make all the difference in the footage that you will be receiving. (We’re talking full day versus just a few hours!).

GOING OVERBOARD WITH THE ADD-ONS

Is your heart set on having drone footage? How about an additional edit or mini teaser? As you are deciding on the perfect video package, go easy on the add-ons if you are looking for a more simple video!

NEGLECTING THOSE WINTER WEDDING DISCOUNTS

Although the weather may be a little frightful, a winter wedding can be so delightful! Choosing to celebrate your special day in the off-season months like January or February will save you extra cash on many aspects of your wedding, not just video!

NOT UTILIZING YOUR EDITING AND DOWNLOADING OPTIONS

Hoping to get bride and groom preparations from the early morning into that final edit? From raw footage to the real deal, make the most out of the videography package you decide on and all that it can offer for you.

Too Much Zooming

No matter if you’re filming with a DSLR, a mirrorless camera, a smartphone, or a dedicated video camera, constantly zooming in and out is a big no-no. Like any other feature, use of the zoom should be relegated to situations in when it’s absolutely necessary. Just because you can zoom doesn’t mean you should! Before zooming, consider if you really need a close-up sequence of your subject. And if you determine that you do, why not create that sequence separately without a zoom in between? Doing so will get you a much cleaner-looking sequence which is why many film directors seldom, if ever, utilize the zoom.

Too Many Miniature Pans and Tilts to Recompose the Frame

After each zoom the frame wouldn’t be just right, so the videographer would do a quick small pan to the left or right, or a slight tilt up or down, to get a nice composition. All of these little adjustments were visible, distracting, and frustrating.All the camera movement added up to too much visual chaos: panning, tilting, zooming in, zooming out, always behind the action.

Videos Have no Clear Objective

Having a clear objective is an essential part of creating a quality video. One of the most costly mistakes that we see with businesses is not outlining the overall message of the video before shooting it. Reshooting scenes because something was left out can be very expensive. Furthermore, finalized videos must have a clear message and tell viewers what you want them to do. So make sure that you write your script before you even think about trying to shoot it. 

Videos that are Too Long

Don’t take this the wrong way. Videos that are long and engaging are going to convert at a high rate in some cases. The key word there is “engaging.” The problem is that a lot of beginners create long, boring videos that use a monotonous voice to describe the product or service. If a video does not hook an audience within the first few seconds, then you’ll lose viewers. In most cases, you should keep your videos short and engaging so that viewers will stick around for the whole thing. 

Wedding Video – 4 Mistakes to avoid

Weddings are a joyous occasion but, without sounding like a broken record, are stressful to plan. It is also a day you should want to relive. Choosing who will film your wedding video is an important decision to make. While it is our job to provide the magic behind the camera, there are a few things couples can do to make it less stressful.

We have curated a list of mistakes that couples make and how to avoid them.

Not hiring a wedding video agency

There are lots of reasons you may decide to not hire a wedding videographer. One of the biggest regrets couples have however is not having a video of their wedding day. Some couples are afraid that their wedding video will look cheap, but with the equipment we have, they can look as cinematic as any film. Photographers are great but are unable to capture speeches or the first dance in the same fashion as video.

Not finalising your wedding day schedule.

Touching on a previous post we wrote about commitments, dialogue between you and your videographer is essential. If everyone is on the same page it makes the day run so much smoother. If you have special moments that can’t be missed, discuss these with your videographer.

Researching your videographer

Settling for the first wedding videographer you come across can be a costly mistake. You should take time to research at least a few different wedding video producers. This way you’ll build an idea of what you can afford. A good wedding videographer should always be willing to meet for a free, no-obligation consultation.

Having a friend or family film your wedding video.

I’ve seen it time and time again. Couples who have asked a friend or family member to provide a service for their wedding only to be left feeling underwhelmed by the results. Scenarios like these can take a toll on the relationship you have with these people. Avoid these situations and hire a wedding video agency

Termite Control Tips

Termite Control

As spring kicks into high gear, it’s time for all of us to start thinking more about pest control. In particular, we know that many customers are worried about termite control. There are many steps you can take to ensure that your home or commercial property is safe from termites and other wood destroying insects. However, we think they can be broken down into three main categories: prevention, vigilance, and action.

Prevention

The best way to recover from a termite problem is to never have one in the first place.

While sometimes even the most responsible homeowner ends up with termites, there are several steps you can take to keep the termites at bay:

Minimize wood-to-soil contact. This means not storing firewood or other wood debris close to your home, not affixing wooden trellises for plants directly to your walls, etc.

Keep your home as dry as possible. Fix leaky faucets, leaky roofs, and other problems that might lead to moisture where you don’t want it to be.

Install vapor barriers and automatic ventilators to keep the places of your home you can’t see dry and inhospitable to termites.

Contact us for a termite prevention plan. We can work on both existing structures and new construction projects.

Constant Vigilance

Even if you’ve taken preventive measures, it’s important to keep an eye out for possible termites or termite damage

While it can be hard to catch termites early, it’s certainly not impossible. Here is what you should watch out for:

Wood damage: The easiest way to tell if you have termites is to see if they have already damaged your wood. Test wooden surfaces like windowsills by gently tapping them with the handle of a screwdriver or other lightweight tool. If the wood sounds hollow, you could have termite damage.

Mud tubes: Termites use tubes made of wood and soil to protect themselves. Look for these tubes (about the size of a straw) around your baseboards, pipes, chimney, etc.

Dead insects: You may not be able to tell the difference between a dead termite and a dead ant or other insect. However, seeing large numbers of dead insects is never a good sign.

Best pest control company

The right company should have reliable, professional technicians:

Pest technicians are the core of a pest control company. They perform any treatment that occurs in and around your home. Pest control operators understand this, so if a company’s technicians seem unprofessional, sloppy, or rude, odds are the rest of the company is not being held to a high standard. Beyond this, remember that these technicians would be treating your home with chemicals, so you will want to choose someone who is correctly trained.

The right company should have good reviews:

Pest control is a service industry, and most of a pest company’s revenue comes from long-term customers. Because of this, a good company that cares about its public image and strives to keep customers satisfied. When considering a pest control company, ask your friends and neighbors who they use for their service

You can also check online for Google Reviews and testimonials about the company. These will give you a good idea of how a typical customer feels about the service. Since Google reviews can be left by anyone, you will also get a better idea of how the company treats customers across its entire service range.`

The right company should have certification and documentation:

For a pest control company to operate legally, most states require some form of training and certification. Unfortunately, some less honest companies will choose to operate illegally without any licensing, and thus their training and treatment methods are not audited in any way. Homeowners should we wary of companies that are hesitant to show proper certification.

The right company should have correct service procedures:

There is a lot more to pest control than just spraying chemicals. A technician should be a pest expert with extensive knowledge about the treatment products and procedures that he employs. While a technician cannot be expected to know the answer to all of your questions, they should be friendly and willing to find out for you.

How To Choose Termite Exterminator

An investment as precious as your home is one that you certainly want to protect. You may or may not be aware of the costly damages that termite infestations can cause. Each year there is an estimated $5 billion in property damages from termites alone.

Look for a long-standing reputation – See how long they have been in business. Generally, a longer standing reputation is an indication of a pest control company who likes to build long-term relationships with local home and business owners.

Find values that align with you – Read about the company and learn their story. You want a company that is passionate about what they do. It’s also nice if they are locals, this means they have a good grasp of the pest threats in the area.

Choosing a Pest Management Company to Protect Your Home Against Termites

Termites are severe wood-destroying insect pests present in all Oklahoma counties. They cause hundreds-of-millions of dollars of damage annually to wooden structures and homes across the United States. Termite pressure (risk) may range from very heavy in southeastern counties to moderate-to-heavy in the rest of the state

Termites are soft-bodied, measuring approximately one-quarter-inch to one-half-inch long, creamy colored pale insects that consist of several different forms (castes). The different castes in a termite colony consist of the founding king and queen (primary reproductives that start a new colony), the wood-destroying form – workers, soldiers that defend the colony, and young, winged kings and queens (Figures 2 and 3). The winged forms (alates or swarmers; kings and queens) have two pair of wings that are nearly equal in length. When termites are swarming, this easily visible form is what homeowners call pest management professionals about. The wood-damaging workers are not usually visible unless their mud tubes or tunnels are broken open to expose crawling termites.

With termites, the thorax and abdomen are broadly connected, both about the same width, with a wide waist. That is, there is no narrowing or constricted waistline between these two body regions like that seen with ants. Bodies of termites are oval-tubular, not flattened. Figure 2 illustrates two castes, a worker and a soldier, showing body characteristics that are useful for identification. Figure 3 shows a top and side view of a winged termite swarmer (new reproductive).

Generally, subterranean termites must maintain contact with soil to survive. However, there are occasions where native subterranean termites can live above ground in structures and be completely cut off from soil contact, although this is not common. The probability that termites will attack a wooden structure within a few years after construction is high in Oklahoma. Termite attack could even begin within a year after construction because termites are everywhere in Oklahoma soils. Proper treatment of the soil with a liquid termiticide (insecticide formulated for termite control) before construction (pre-construction application) significantly reduces the threat from subterranean termites. If you know or suspect that your home is infested with termites, it is recommended the building owner retain the services of a professional pest control company. Termite management and termiticide applications require expensive specialized equipment, professional knowledge, and experience and training. This fact sheet reviews decision-making steps that will help you select a pest control company.

Do not become overly alarmed.

There is no need to become unduly alarmed if you learn that your home has a termite infestation. Termites work slowly so your house will not be quickly destroyed or collapse overnight. The termites have been present for several months or perhaps a few years, so taking a few days to determine your best termite management options is acceptable.

Tips for Choosing a Pest Control Company

When you have a pest problem, you want to know that you are going to get the professional service that you need. You expect the best, and you need it taken care of as quickly and efficiently as possible.

There are so many pest control companies to choose from, how do you pick the best one?

How long has the firm been in business? Longevity and experience are two keys to providing superior pest service.

Find out if they have experience with your type of pest problem. Sometimes, pest control companies specialize, but you will want one with expertise with your specific pest problem.

Get references. There really is no substitute for this, so go with one that comes with referrals from your friends or relatives that have used the company.

Find out if they are trained and licensed and if ongoing education of their field personnel is important to them.

Look to see if there are any guarantees. If they are dealing with termites, you also want to know if they have liability insurance just in case your termite problem is not resolved.

Check with the Better Business Bureau to see if there are complaints against the company. Your state will also have a similar list.

Get at least 2 or 3 estimates before you buy, then compare services offered and price before you choose one.

Find out how long the service is good for. There will be a contract, and it will state how many months they will service your home or business.

Ensure that the company you hire follows Integrated Pest Management protocols. Learn what chemicals they use and how they are distributed in your home or business. In most cases, you want to go for limited amounts and limited distribution. Note that warmer climates may require a wider usage.

Understand how often treatments are repeated and how many treatments are covered in the contract.

For termite contracts, find out if the damaged wood will be replaced, and when re-inspections will be performed. Also learn about where treatment stations will be placed and the types of chemicals used, ask for a copy of the labels.

Find out what the company will do in the way of prevention, how long it will take, and how often they need to return for inspections, cleanup, etc

Depending on the particular pest, your service professional should always perform the services as covered in the Agreement. Do not expect anything to be done for you if it is not in print. Make sure that you understand all aspects of the Agreement, too, before you sign anything. Ask questions if you need to