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The True Purpose of Air Filters in your HVAC System

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There’s a ton of content around the internet about air filters and HVAC systems. It seems like everyone recommends replacing the filter regularly, but the reasons for doing so are often varied. Some articles talk about benefits of different filters, different particle sizes that pass through, HEPA level filters, supposed air quality improvements around your home and other upgrades. But how much of that is true? Let’s break it down.

You Have One Filter for your AC and Furnace

Air conditioners and furnaces operate as one system together. The intake all passes through to one filter, so you don’t need to replace filters in multiple areas. It’s usually located right next to your blower motor in your furnace, so normally you will find it there. If you think it strange that your AC filter is by the furnace, just remember that the air conditioner and heater are a team.

Filters Protect the Equipment, Not Your Lungs

The truth is that your filter is there to protect your HVAC system, not your health. This makes sense – in most homes air is entering and exiting the home through a variety of other methods. When you open the door or leave a window open, fresh air is introduced into the home that does not pass through the HVAC system and therefore is not filtered by your HVAC filter.

What the filter does is prevent dust, dirt, debris and other particulates from hitting the sensitive components of your HVAC equipment. It does prevent more dust from being blown through your ductwork and dispersed through the house, but it’s not going to purify all the air in your home.

The exception to this might be doomsday bunkers or extremely airtight homes that intake most of the fresh air through the HVAC system, but in most cases, this is not how homes work today.

Upgrading the Filter May Damage Your Equipment

You may want to think twice before buying a HEPA filter for your system. When the coronavirus pandemic started, searches for HEPA filters and other indoor air quality products skyrocketed. It’s true these filters are what are used in hospitals, but your typical residential HVAC system does not have components designed to work with a HEPA filter. HEPA filters have tighter weaves, which means it catches tiny particles and keeps the air remarkably clean. Because the weave is tighter, the airflow is restricted. This means your blower motor and other components have to work harder to draw the correct amount of air through the system, leading to greater wear and tear over time.

The same effect occurs if you leave your filter alone too long and it collects too much dust and dirt. You may be looking at a furnace repair due to low airflow during a cold winter night, which normally requires a professional to fix.

Keep it Clean, Keep it Open

If you’re really concerned about air quality in the home, follow the EPA’s guidance on improved ventilation and source control. Although your HVAC system should remain protected by your filter, your lungs will benefit from opening a few windows and letting the outdoors in.

partnered post • cc-licensed image by HomeSpot


Tips and Tricks for Drywall Plastering

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Hanging drywall is often a more forgiving tradesman’s job that doesn't necessarily require a high degree of precision and compliance with national and local standards. While there is no 100% way of hanging drywall, you still have to get it right, and there are countless ways to realize this.

By following the right techniques and with some repeatability, you can almost transform this into something of an art form, according to Plasterer Central Coast. Every drywall installation tradie will develop their unique way of accomplishing this that will enable them to have smooth muddling, taping and finishing in drywall installations. Here are some simple tips, tricks and hacks that you can use to hang drywalls correctly.

Get the Layout Right

You’ve got to get the layout right to ensure the drywall is installed and aligned correctly and with the best workmanship. Using a pencil, mark the areas where you will place the vertical studs. This will make it easier for you when the drywall panels are being attached to the framing. Before you start hanging the drywall panels, complete the insulating work as well as the vapour barrier installations.

Ensure the Framing is Flat

The drywall panels are likely to bend if the plane of the ceiling or the wall isn’t flat. It should be perfectly flat from stud to stud or between the ceiling joists. The bending of the panels creates ugly contours or even cracks on the finished ceiling or finished walls. That is why you should use level or straightedge to determine if the wall or the ceiling members are levels, flat and plumb. If it isn't level, you may need to plane down the framing members that shim out others extending farther out. For a perfect drywall installation, you need to get the plane’s level, flat and plumb.

Install the top row panels first

The professional way to install drywall panels is by starting from a single upper corner of the room and then installing the panels horizontally while ensuring the top edges are aligned against the ceiling. During the installations, the end of the panels must be placed at the centre of a stud. The panels may need to be scored and snapped into place to get the right fit.

User longer panels

DIYers tend to use 8-feet panels, but it is generally recommended that you use the 10 to 12 feet-long panels. These are also advantageous as they can cover the whole lengths of small rooms.

Start with the ceiling.

If you are drywalling an entire room, it is prudent to begin with the ceiling. The panels can be lifted and laid out against the ceiling joists with a pulley-driven drywall lift. Some crews use T-shaped “crutches” for placing the panels in place before driving in the nails or the screws. Overall, the techniques for installing the drywall panels onto the walls are mainly the same.

Attach the Panels to the Studs First

To hold the plasterboard securely against the studs, start by driving some nails and screws on their ends and down towards the centre. You should drive the screws far enough that they should ‘dimple’ the drywall surface, but they shouldn't go too deep that they'd break the paper surface. The strength of the attachment is undermined if the paper is broken. Drywall guns feature adjustable clutches that give you some control over the depth of the screw bit. Ensure that you choose the right size of screws and nails that will match the drywall size. The screws should be placed at least ½ inch from the edge of the panel.

The Panels Can Be Cut by Snapping

According to a professional plasterer, one of the easiest ways to cut the drywall length-wise is by first scoring a single side of the board using a utility knife. You can subsequently turn to the backside of the panel and crack it using your knee. If the gyprock board is hit at the correct spot, it will smoothly separate uniformly along the line you scored earlier. Once you have folded the panel along its scored line, you can slice it down straight along the fold on the other side using a utility knife. This will finish the cut.

Use the Right Tools

The secret to flawless drywall installations is using the right sets of tools, particularly those that are preferred by professionals. Having straight sets of tools is especially important if you will be installing the drywall alone. If you can’t afford the tools, you can rent them at the leading tool lease outlets or home improvement centres.

Some of the top tools that you should use for drywall installations include:

  • Drywall screwgun
  • Drywall stilts
  • Hydraulic drywall lift
  • Drywall rotary saw

partnered post • cc-licensed image by TrickyKid


Contractors Save Money with Climate-Controlled Self Storage

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You aren’t alone if you are running your business out of your van or trailer and carrying around all of your equipment everywhere you go. This isn’t the worst way to go, but is it the best? What do you do as your business grows and you start hiring more apprentices & subcontractors to help you out? In my electrical business, I for one always hated the idea of leaving my tools onsite. Some of that stuff is expensive!! And it ain’t that hard to take!

The obvious answer to our problems is storing equipment at self-storage facilities. You choose your own lock and who to give it to, and then you tell your staff to go pick it up when you want them to. They don’t have to have you drop it off, or come to your current job site to pick up whatever they need. And you don’t have to take the risk of leaving all of your expensive equipment at different sites and risk it being stolen or lost.

Choosing a storage unit isn’t hard – but it does require a little thought and planning. So keep the following in mind:

  1. Location & Unit Size
  2. Climate Control
  3. Security

Location & Unit Size: You want to choose a facility that is located well. What’s your typical radius for jobs you do? And what’s conveniently located relative to your home? Find a place that’s, ideally, both on typical daily driving routes and also close to your various work sites.

Storage unit size is also critical. Are you doing a lot of earthwork and have expensive equipment that you need to protect especially during the winter months? You’re gonna need a big storage unit! Maybe get a large 20’x8’ unit. Are you an electrician like me and just have various handheld tools, coils of romex, etc? Don’t spend more than you have to, get a 10’x5’. 

Climate Control is Key! You worked hard to afford some expensive equipment. Rust is not your friend, but it will find you if you don’t keep your equipment stored in a place that controls for both temperature and humidity swings. (Swings in temperature lead to conflicts between two localized atmospheres’ levels of relative humidity, and this then leads to condensation. Condensation creates moisture which, in turn, creates rust!) Beyond rust, moisture can also irredeemably damage your electronic control panels and lead to mold on anything you have that’s wooden.

Climate control is an important feature everywhere, but certainly it rises is relative important as the severity of your local climate rises. For example, storage units in San Diego, California may not face nearly the same amount of swings in outdoor temperature and humidity as storage units Waterville Maine.

Don’t be surprised if Climate Control may end up costing you a little bit more money. Remember, though, that this is a critically important additional service. It does take more investment by facility owners to create and provide this service. As contractors ourselves, we would never consider storing our items in conventional storage that didn’t offer climate control. Especially though if you’re storing anything with electronic control panels that is valuable, we really recommend that you invest the extra money to do this the right way.

Security: When you rent a unit, make sure you demand a certain level of quality in security from that facility. You need to have 24/7 video surveillance, a gate with keypad coded entry, strong facility lighting, and some on-site management.

Summing it Up: “Self-storage” units are in every town in America. Even in rural areas, they’re almost definitely within a short drive of you. Especially if you’re anywhere close to a large city, they’re probably within 10 minutes driving from you at any point in time. They can be such an awesome tool for you as you grow your business and looking for time-saving techniques. But make sure you choose wisely according to our 3 precepts above: location; climate control; security. Take a little time & money upfront to save & make a lot more time and money later on!

We Want to Hear Your Story! If any of you reading have experience with self-storage, we’d love to hear your story! Please send us your comments below!

partnered post • cc-licensed image by Scott Meyers


What Are the Best Step Ladders for Electricians?

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There are very few trades out there that don’t put people at some kind of risk. Builders, plumbers and window cleaners all have challenges that they have to overcome if they want to work safely, but few people face the risk of electrocution as frequently as electricians do. 

When you’re working around exposed wires, light fixtures and electrical sockets, it’s important you have safety precautions in place that will protect you in case an accidental shock occurs. Electricians often have to buy specialist equipment to protect them from electric shocks.

What’s the problem with using metal step ladders?

The reason why electricians can’t use metal ladders is because they’re highly conductive. Electricity always wants to follow the fastest and easiest route into the ground. 

So, if someone on an aluminium ladder comes into contact with electricity, the current will pass through the person, down the length of the ladder and into the ground. Electric shocks can be fatal, so it’s important that electricians do whatever they can to protect against this.

What step ladders can electricians use?

To protect against the risk of electrocution, electricians should invest in fibre glass step ladders. Fibre glass is a non-conductive material that will stop an electric current in its tracks. By putting something like a fibre glass step ladder between you and the ground, you significantly reduce the chances of an electric shock.

Some wooden step ladders are also suitable for electricians, but it’s important that you check whether or not the timber poles and rungs have re-enforced with metal rods before you buy. If they have, the ladder is more than likely conductive, so shop with caution.

What are the best step ladders for electricians on the market?

If you’re looking for a high-quality fibre glass step ladder, there are plenty to choose from. Retailers like Ladders UK Direct offer an extensive range of fibre glass step ladders that can be used by electricians, builders and homeowners alike. 

Some of the best step ladders for electricians are from prominent brands like Werner and Youngman. Their fibre glass step ladders come in a huge selection of heights and sizes, making them perfect for almost every kinds of electrical job imaginable. 

So, now that you know which step ladders are the best for electricians, you can face electrical tasks confidently and safely.

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The Purpose of Using a Backwash Filter & Valve

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pictured: the simplest type of backwash valve; even something this simple can save you a huge headache later!

Water filters are common among households since families want to ensure their water supply is clean. However, standard filtration systems aren’t enough to completely clean the water and remove unwanted contaminants.

Backwash filters are better at doing this job. What are they and how do they work? What are the important components to consider? 

We’ll answer those questions in this article. Let’s dig into the topic.

How does a Backwash Filter Work? 

Backwash filters work by reversing the flow of water to remove any debris, minerals, or contaminants. 

Its main components include a tank and the filtering media. Water flows through the tank, where the backwash filter reverses its flow and drains the water out of the filter. 

Then, it suspends the particles in the filter media and prevents them from leaving once the water starts to flow again. 

To be more familiar with how backwash filters work, it’s wise to read this Lifesource water review.

The Filter Media 

The filter media traps the contaminants and particles in your water system. The media can be made of sand, rubber, crumb, or even crushed glass.

You can get multi-media filters, too, where the filter media layer different materials to filter water. It’s wise to use multi-media filters if one type of filter cannot adequately keep your water clean.

Different filtering media remove different kinds of particles. For example, certain types of filters can remove iron, chlorine, sulfur, and sediment. 

The following are some of the most common filter media:

Granular Activated Carbon

Granular activated carbon is used to: 

  • Reduce the amount of chlorine and chloramine in the water
  • Improve the water’s taste or odor
  • Remove sediments 

Granular activated carbon is a versatile filter media, so it’s the preferred treatment for many chemical contaminants.

Catalytic Carbon 

Catalytic carbon removes chlorine, chloramine, hydrogen sulfide, and iron from the water. It’s a more expensive grade of activated carbon, but it’s popular for chloramine removal for city water systems.

Birm 

Birm is used to reduce iron and manganese contaminants. It’s relatively lightweight, so it’s easy to backwash. It’s cheap, too, making it a popular iron medium. 

One drawback, however, is that a water pH level of at least 6.8 is often necessary to let Birm remove iron.

Backwash Monitor

Backwashing often leads to some amount of water loss. Using a monitoring system is a wise move. A monitoring system helps you learn just how clean or dirty your water is while also minimizing water loss. 

The sensor in the monitoring system measures the media level. It pushes the filter media to collide with the upward flowing water, letting the filter media eliminate any unwanted particles. 

The sensor also regulates the expansion rate of filter media. If the rate is too low, you can’t properly clean the filter, resulting in water loss. If the rate is too high, the filter media could flow out and escape through the filter.

Control Valves 

Many modern filters use control valves where an electric timer initiates and controls the filter backwash at a specific time. 

Meanwhile, some sophisticated setups start backwashing based on the pressure difference between incoming and outgoing water.

partnered post • cc-licensed image by Carlos Pacheco


5 Exterior Wall Cladding Ideas You Should Consider

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If you’ve ever considered cladding your home you’ll have realized that the best vinyl cladding is worth considering but is not the only choice available. The array of options in cladding has expanded dramatically in recent years, it’s worth spending a few minutes considering the different options.

Don’t forget that your cladding doesn’t just make a statement, it should also reflect the area you live in, making a great impression on neighbors and friends.

Here are some great exterior cladding ideas:

Vinyl Cladding

Vinyl cladding may be the original option but there is a huge range of styles to choose from. You can opt for plain white, or virtually any color in a plain finish. But, you’ll also want to consider the alternate finishes, such as a wood look. This looks as though you’ve clad your home with wood, but you have the convenience and practicality of vinyl.

It’s worth taking a look at the variety of options available.

Brick Look

Brick has been around for hundreds of years but you don’t need a brick-built home to benefit from the look. Brick cladding is easy to put on your property and it offers natural protection against fire and the elements, helping your home to feel safer and warmer.

You can choose from a variety of shades of brick and even the size of the bricks are optional. It’s a great way to get a classic feel on a contemporary house.

Metal

Metal is the opposite. Although used in industry for many years it is a relative newcomer to the residential market. However it is long-lasting, can be created in virtually any color, and comes in an array of finishes.

Perhaps best of all is that it’s easy to install and can be crafted to virtually any shape, making it a great option if your house has lots of extra bits sticking in and out.

Metal is also surprisingly sturdy, providing an extra layer of protection in extreme weather, even potentially withstanding earthquakes and hurricanes.

Wood

You can’t talk about cladding without mentioning wood, the traditional finish for many homes. Modern wood cladding is available in a wide array of colors, it’s treated to protect it from the elements, and needs minimal maintenance.

The wood usually comes from sustainable forests or is reclaimed from other projects, making this a good environmentally friendly option. You will need to verify it’s origin before you purchase.

It can provide a beautiful rustic and authentic look, regardless of the type of home you have.

Fibre Cement

This is mounted on your property in the same way as any other cladding. But, the result is it looks like your house has been rendered in smooth cement. It’s available in a variety of colors and will never need painting.

It’s also fire-rated, giving protection against fire for up to 60 minutes. It looks impressive!

Take the time to consider your options before choosing the best cladding for your property and your needs. You may surprise yourself.

partnered post • cc-licensed image by Needpix


‘Perfect for Entertaining’

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If you’ve spent any time at all looking at real estate listings, you’ll know the phrase ‘perfect for entertaining’ all too well. Everything from granite countertops to a slab of concrete in the backyard can be billed as making a home ‘perfect for entertaining.’ Let’s look at some home upgrades that really do have the potential to turn your home into an ‘entertainer’s dream.’

If you love inviting friends and family over, or you look forward to activities like pizza parties and movie nights with your kids, youll likely want a space in your home thats ideal for entertaining. There are several ways you can update and remodel residential spaces to make areas in your home, especially inviting and unique. Here are a few creative ideas that can make your home one of the best places to gather for a special occasion.

Open Up the Floor Plan

When you invite loved ones over for a game night or holiday party, they likely all gravitate to the kitchen. The kitchen is the area where food and drinks are served, and you’re likely to start engaging in conversation around the kitchen table. Even if the design scheme for the rest of your home is visually appealing, people are naturally attracted to the kitchen.

Older homes often have small kitchens. If you like the architectural design of your older house and don't have the budget to knock down walls to make the kitchen bigger, you may want to consider a more open floor plan.

An open floor plan makes your dining room and living room especially welcoming so that guests will be drawn to these areas. Remove some of the larger furniture pieces and add a large throw pillow to the floor. Paint the wall in pastel or metallic shades, and add sheer curtains that let natural light. These steps help make a space look larger and keep your guests from crowding the kitchen.

Walls that “Open”

If you've already been in your home for years, it’s likely that your idea of entertaining loved ones isn't the same as it was a decade ago. Changing the furniture around in the common area of your home may not be enough to accomplish the design aesthetic you want anymore. Previously, the woman of the house cooked for a large family, but these days, more men are helping in the kitchen, which is why this area of the home is a popular gathering spot. Knocking a small wall out in your kitchen to make the space larger makes a huge difference and is more budget-friendly than renovating the entire kitchen. You can also install French doors where your kitchen and dining room meet. When you open the doors, the space automatically looks more welcoming, and you can close the doors if you prefer to keep friends and loved ones out of the kitchen while you're preparing the food.

Add an Outdoor Kitchen 

If you’re known (or would like to be known) for backyard barbecues and family picnics, consider installing an outdoor kitchen in your backyard. U-shaped outdoor kitchens are a popular entertainer's upgrade that can help with entertaining now and selling your home later. You'll have to work with a contractor to make the right plumbing connections when you want to add a sink or stove to the outdoor kitchen. It's also a good idea to install a small refrigerator, storage shelves, and bar seating.

Decks and Outdoor Areas 

If you find that youre running out of space in your home for entertaining, consider making some updates to your deck and patio area. Adding a screen around the porch makes a comfortable sitting area that is cool and bug-free. Choose outdoor furniture that matches the design scheme of your homes interior, and consider planting a small garden around the patio to add texture and color to the area.

When you put thought into the design you want for your entertaining space, your guests will feel especially welcome, even if you havent added square footage to your home. Small solutions, like creative storage and additional seating, can open up your home and create an entertainment area you can be proud of.

partnered post • cc-licensed image by Nancy Hugo


Tips to Consider When Remodeling Your Living Room

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In the contemporary world, a vast majority lives in compact houses, as the cost of living has gone higher in the past few years. People used separate rooms for entertaining guests, dressing, dining, sleeping, or family gatherings in the old days. In modern homes, the living room generally serves all these purposes. The living room has become the dominant point of the house, as it is where most of the house’s activities take place. After spending an exhausting day outdoors, people wind up in the living rooms, entertain guests here, and carry out their day-to-day activities in the same room. Many have installed their television screens and placed dining tables in the living room, and thus, the room sees a lot of commotion. Contemporary architects design houses so that living rooms connect all other areas, and are generally in the middle of the house.

Since the living room is a happening place, the furniture items and other stuff wear out quickly as people use them excessively. People often consider remodeling the widely used space, but they hesitate because of the expense and hard work that are upgrading demands. The truth is if you plan intelligently, you can revamp the living room without making a hole in your pocket. Besides, the living room is the center point, and giving just one area makeover, gives the whole house an updated look. Many people neglect the functionality while renovating the living room, and later on, the fancy setting hinders their daily procedures. You can easily upgrade your space and give it a modern look while keeping it practical.

The following are some tips that will need your utmost consideration while your deicide to remodel your living room:

  1. Upgrade Walls

The very old practice of revamping a room is to change the walls’ color to give it a fresh look. Although it is still applicable, markets have several other options. You can display your favorite paintings, pictures, quotes, or calligraphy on the walls, and the room will exhibit your vibe. Hanging map art is the unique way of blending your personality into the décor and simultaneously adding an oomph factor. Moreover, when a statement piece is on the wall, you do not need anything else in the room to stand out by itself.

  1. Indoor Plants

Bringing nature to your enclosed space is an inexpensive way of adding luxury to your home. Besides, plants have a pleasing effect on the overall environment and help in lifting residents’ moods. They keep the air pure, impacting the physical, mental and emotional health of inhabitants positively; you can put a huge pot at the corner or have small planters on the shelves. Hanging plants give the space a green yet a calming look. 

  1. Change Lighting

Lighting is an essential factor of the room as it creates the whole mood of the space. To remodel your room, you can add different sources of adjustable lighting, highlighting the room’s outstanding parts. Statement lamps also give the place a classic touch, or you can install a chandelier in the middle of the ceiling, and it will illuminate the whole living room. Markets have plenty of lighting options, and you can choose as per your room, budget, and décor. To add to the space's look, you must carefully see the lighting placement as loud lights kill the room’s feel.

  1. Create Illusion of Space

The modern houses typically do not have spacious living rooms, but you can creatively decorate your compact areas and establish an illusion of space. Mirrors not only add to the beauty of the room but also make it appear bigger. Standee mirrors are trendy and will help in giving the idea of more space. Pastel-colored walls look classy and, on the other hand, provide the false idea of a larger area.

  1. Accessorize the Room

Adorning the living room with elegant accessories is another way of upgrading your space. The decorative rug gives the floor a rich look, a posh nightstand with few decoration pieces provides the room with a classy touch, or sculptures on the corners will provide the place with an artistic feel. Throwing cushions will not only create another seating arrangement, but they can serve as embellishment for the room as well. Moreover, you can have decoration pieces on the shelves, corners, or tables. If you have a particular theme, you can select items accordingly or go for a mix and match to remodel your arena.

  1. Entryway

The living room is the opening of your house, which is why the entryway is the first impression you make, and if you manage to do that right, the rest will fall in place. A huge flower vase or a statement art sculpture can be a great addition to your décor at the gate. You can have a sleek shoe organizer, which will help you keep your footwear organized and gives your entryway a luxurious touch. Welcoming quotes, wind chimes, or a classy cage of birds or other décor can also give guests a warm welcome.

  1. Furniture

Many people make the mistake of splurging money on furniture items when they can refurbish their old ones. It is unnecessary to purchase new things to remodel the room when you can make the existing ones appear fresh. You can buy one piece to keep as a focal point of the room, and it alone will bring luxury to the room. Resetting the furniture items is another excellent and economical way of updating the space. Furthermore, the room sees a lot of activity, and you must know that you place durable furniture pieces to avoid your visits to the dealer.

conclusion

The living room is undoubtedly the house’s versatile space, and you must be vigilant while planning to upgrade it. Please consider your family needs and your lifestyle while revamping the room. You are changing flooring or window treatments aid in boosting the whole look of the room. Large windows help to let natural light in, which gives the room an awe factor. Remodeling a space is a game of the mind, and when it comes to decoration, the options are innumerable.

partnered post • cc-licensed image from Pixabay


Common Plastering Problems and Their Causes

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Plastering problems can occur at any time and season of the year and can be caused by a list of different reasons. Like every other part of your home that requires regular maintenance, so does your ceilings and walls. The ceilings and walls in your home need more attention than you might think and can damage as a result of negligence or damage caused by water, unexpected damages, weather conditions, climate changes, leakages, temperature changes and many more.

In order to identify these problems in your home, you would need to be informed about the different types of damages and their causes. In understanding what causes various damages to your walls and ceilings in your home, you will then be able to determine whether you can fix it yourself or whether you’ll need professional help from plasterers in your area. You don’t need a broad set of skills or expertise to fix these problems yourself. If you love doing maintenance around your home and have the proper tools and materials to do so, then these fixing these problems will become few of your newest DIY projects. However, if you don’t have the necessary skill set or knowledge on how to fix these problems, or if they are more significant than your expertise, then you can seek plasterer Hobart help. To find out more about the common plastering problems and their causes, continue reading this article.

Cracked Plaster

This is the most common plastering problem you might find in your home. Cracked plaster is a sign of natural aging in your walls and ceilings, or could be caused by more significant issues. More delicate cracks known as hairline cracks can occur on the surface of your walls and ceilings. These cracks are usually small and can be repaired with little expertise and experience. More significant cracks known as delaminating cracks are often visible on the surface of the ceilings and walls and can result in significant problems if not treated immediately and professionally. This starts happening when the plaster moves away from the lath, which causes cracks in the walls and ceilings.

The dangers of delaminating cracks being left unattended include the possibility of cracked surfaces to fall off and harm anyone in its way or damage any furniture or valuable household items underneath it.

Settlement cracks are caused by a particular part of your home that begins to cave in. This can be identified by experienced tradies who understands these types of cracks and can correct the foundation in your home to prevent this from reoccurring. Homes that will be more prone to these types of cracks are those who experience hurricanes and floods.

If these cracks are left unattended at any point, they can result in even more significant problems that might not be able to be fixed by you, but only by the expertise of a professional plasterer.

Discoloured Plaster

These cracks can be identified as brown stains that appear on the surface of your ceilings, and are often caused by water damage. If left untreated, it can leave your ceilings and walls looking completely unattractive, and your home looking like less of a home. When you detect this type of plastering problem in your home, be prepared for leakages to follow as this is an early warning sign of future leakages. 

An affordable way of fixing this type of problem yourself is by using primer paint. This primer paint will provide your ceilings and walls with protection against stains; however, this is only a temporary solution to your plastering problems as it requires constant retouching. If you would like a more permanent solution, it’s advisable to seek professional help to avoid the process of having to retouch your paint for protection and will save you money in the long term.

Bubbling Plaster

Once leakages start showing itself on your ceiling and wall surfaces, they are sure to begin affecting your plastering. Once plastering is involved, it will show in signs of stains in affected areas on surfaces. If these stains are left untreated, it will cause the plastering to start bubbling in affected areas. Bubbling plaster is usually a more profound problem of what’s visible on the surface. These problems can be professionally assessed by expertise in the field to identify the root cause of the problem. When choosing professional plasterers, it’s essential to consider their knowledge and experience, as this will aid in good recovery of your plastering problems.

Bulging Plaster

This problem is quite similar to that of delaminating plaster cracks. The only noticeable difference is that there are no visible cracks on the surface, and these damages can show up at any given time without warning. This type of damage can be caused by water or moist due to climate conditions that can further affect the plaster on your walls and ceilings in your home. The ageing process of plaster can also cause them over time. This happens when the plaster starts separating from the lath and starts showing on the surfaces of walls. 

When this type of problem is identified, it’s imperative to seek urgent help from professionals as it can have further implications for your home.

When it comes to your home, maintenance should be your top priority. In order to keep your home well-maintained all year round, it’s crucial to be knowledgeable about the common types of plastering problems and what their causes are. By knowing these problems, you’ll easily be able to identify any plastering problems in your home. Depending on your level of skill regarding home maintenance and the severity of the problem, you could quickly get away with fixing the issues yourself. However, if the problem is more significant than your skillset and expertise, then it’s advisable to seek professional help from plasterers in your area. They are professionally trained and licensed to deal with serious plastering problems and will assist you in getting to the root cause of your plastering problems. 

partnered post • cc-licensed photo of Jamie Fineran by WorldSkills UK


Preventing Porch Pirates

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guide created by Eye Trax

Who doesn’t love receiving packages in the mail? However, you might not be the only one keeping an eye out for the delivery truck. According to one study, about 24% of adults found themselves victims of package theft. Of those victims, 64% have since attempted to take extra preparations when ordering online.

Package thieves (i.e., porch pirates) often access your front porch or doorstep when you’re not home. Without a secure or private area for deliveries, you might be more vulnerable to pilfering. While it may be an inconvenience to send your package to another address, safety precautions could help you with more than theft. For example, not only can a video security system offer proof if you ever need to file a police report, it will allow you to know when exactly your packages have arrived.

Porch pirates tend to seek neighborhoods that have high activity in order to avoid being caught. In fact, many packages go unreported or uninvestigated when stolen, primarily because many deliveries contain commodities that can be replaced. If you are a victim of porch piracy, it’s encouraged to contact the seller of the item, file a report and implement new measures to ensure your packages arrive safely.

With the rise in e-commerce, many criminals have discovered an easy way to steal items. For more information on porch piracy and tips to prevent it, check out the accompanying resource.

Author bio: Jerry McSorley is the owner of Eye Trax, the leading provider of solar-powered wireless outdoor security cameras. After working many years within the construction industry, McSorley needed a way to monitor and secure his multiple construction sites. Combining his mechanical engineering degree from Rochester Institute of Technology and extensive business owner experience, he invented an innovative surveillance camera system.

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Quick Tile Removal – Done Right

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Removing tiles can be quite a time-taking and hectic process, especially if you’re doing it on your own. The reason for removing them can vary on your requirements. It can be due to a crack in your tiles, the fact that your kitchen or washroom tiles are too slippery, or just because you need some change in the old-school design of tiles already installed in your home. Either way, the need for changing your kitchen, room, or washroom tiles can occur more than once. And due to this, it’s common for anyone to consider doing the work themselves.

Considering this, it can be a huge struggle – unless you’re a professional or have done tiles removal work before. The reason for this struggle can be either that you’re entirely unfamiliar with the tools and the right way of using them, or because of how hectic and time-taking the task can be. It can take around a whole day for you to remove your home’s tiles – on your own! And in case you’re a total novice at this, then you can simply increase the time-frame according to your knowledge level.

But hey? This doesn’t mean that you’re stuck with the same old broken and dull tiles. Simply because you always have the option of searching for the right tools and trying it – the right way! Now to help you out, let’s discover the tools needed to remove tiles.

Necessary Tools:

Now when it comes to discovering the tools for removing tiles, there are plenty out there that might come in handy. But in the list of all those numerous amounts of tools, you might simply end up getting confused about what to invest in and what are the essential tools needed. You need to understand that the process of removing tiles can consist of different types of small jobs. Therefore, each of these jobs will require various tools, whether it’s in terms of the hand tools or the power tools.

However, we’ve got you covered with a list of tools that are indeed needed. They include:

  • Chisel or air hammer with a chisel set
  • Scraper
  • Painters’ tape
  • Hammer
  • Pry bar
  • Long-handled floor scraper
  • Shop-Vac
  • Shovel and buckets
  • Screwdriver
  • Tarps and plastic wrap

Once you’ve gathered all these tools, you can be sure to effectively manage the process of removing tiles on your own – thanks to the right tools.

The Easy Way Out!

Now even if you’ve planned to start removing your room tiles on your own, the time and physical effort it will consume is hard to keep up with. Therefore, you might end up losing the dedication to continue removing all the tiles yourself.

To handle this situation, there’s always an easy way out to remove all the tiles quickly. This simply refers to hiring professionals to remove the remaining or all of the tiles for you. Now the cost of hiring these services ultimately depends upon the removal area and the type of service you’re looking for. Either way, the right professionals can help you remove all the tiles easily, in less time, and in a professional manner (without damaging anything on the surrounding).

This way, you can save your efforts and make that energy-draining task a lot more relaxing and comfortable to fulfill. So there’s no need to worry about not having the tiles removed rightly – even if you give up in the middle!

partnered post • cc-licensed image by John Loo