Sadly, Winter Is Coming – Make Sure You’re Prepared with A Snow Blower

09/24/2018 Leave a comment Household

A lot of wonderful things happen in the winter like Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s celebrations. However, it is also the coldest time of the year, and when you’re not well-prepared beforehand, it could be the most miserable three months of your life. As the end of fall draws near and winter sets in, there are certain things that you can do as a homeowner to ensure that your home and yard are comfortable to live in and prepared for the nasty weather. Here are some of the most important ways to get your home ready for the winter.

Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning Maintenance

The state that your HVAC system is in when getting into the winter is what will determine how habitable your house will be throughout the season. To make sure that everything is functioning properly when the season sets in you should take care of the following:

  • Have the furnace professionally serviced: Furnace servicing ahead of the winter should include checking to make sure that the thermostat is working and that the gas supply system does not have any leaks. Entering winter with a faulty furnace could mean very cold nights or even worse, broken water pipes resulting in tons of damage.

  • Inspect the doors and windows for leaks: Another important step you should take to make sure that your home is winter ready is checking your doors and windows for signs that they could be poorly insulated. The best way is to call in an expert to do thermal imaging. Any leaking parts should be repaired and insulated again to reduce heat loss and maximize the efficiency of the heating system.
  • Sweep the chimney: Fireplaces are rarely used when the weather is bearable, which means that most people do not even realize there is a buildup of creosote in their chimneys till the winter. Cleaning the chimney will protect your home from fires and also smoke and carbon dioxide poisoning.

The Roof

The roof is one of the most important factors in determining how safe your home and you as the occupants are during the cold of the winter months. Start by inspecting the roofing material to make sure that there are no leaks or other damages. If there are areas which are old and leaking, seek to have them repaired or replaced by an expert. Make sure that you check the flashing and all other components to ensure that they are in excellent condition ahead of the winter. The second component of the roof to look at is the gutters. Have them cleaned and if any are ruined, repair or replace them. Blocked gutters lead to water damage and ice dams when left that way during the winter.

Maintaining The Outdoors

There will be snow accumulation in your driveway, in front of the garage door, and everywhere else outside of your home. A snowblower will be your best friend in managing the thickness of the snow and making sure that your driveway is clear. Here are some of the most useful tips that you need when shopping for a snowblower:

  • Pick the right size: snowblowers come in a variety of sizes from big to small. The size of your yard is what determines which size will be right for you. If you have a big yard, a small blower will keep you working for hours before you can clear everything, and it might not stand up to large amounts of snowfall. Get the dimensions of your yard before getting a blower.
  • Know your terrain: not many people think about the steepness or flatness of their backyards when investing in a blower. You need to pick a snowblower that works effectively regardless of the slope.
  • How much snow to expect: there are some blowers that only have enough power to deal with little to moderate snow build up. If you try to use these for areas that have heavy snowfall, they will keep breaking down. Consider the maximum snow depth that your yard is expected to get before investing in a blower.

There are actually quite a few factors that you want to consider when purchasing a snow blower for your yard, and this is just the beginning. You can check out BSBR’s buying guide for more helpful tips and breakdowns of some of the best snow blowers out there. If the timing is right, you may even want to consider buying offseason, as you can often get great deals. Just make sure that you get a snow blower that can handle whatever your climate throws at it, the last thing you want is a snow blower that’s undersized. Your back will thank you.

If you decide to buy a used snow blower, make sure that you have it serviced and oiled as soon as you get it home. Try starting the snowblower several times to see whether it starts with ease because a snowblower that is difficult to start can become a serious pain every winter morning.

Toilet Talk – What To Look For When It’s Time for a Replacement

08/06/2018 Leave a comment Household

Have you started noticing that your toilet looks a bit old and outdated? It might be one of those rose-colored models from decades ago. Maybe it has a persistent dripping that happens all night long. It might requirement maintenance every month in order to keep it going. Whatever the issue is with your toilet, it might be time to replace it and upgrade to something more efficient and newer. There are some signs you can watch out for that will indicate a new toilet is in your bathroom’s future. Let’s take a closer look.

Overflow Issues

This is a common issue that many homeowners deal with. If you have children in the house you likely have had too much toilet paper flushed down the drain before. Kids trying to flush toys down the toilet can also lead to problems. However, if you notice that your toilet is clogging up numerous times per month with no real known cause, there might be a bigger issue going on. Newer toilets are designed to use less water. At least next time your daughter tries to flush her doll down the toilet, there will be less water to mop up. When you install the new version, you can address any clog issues that might be causing your overflows before you install the new model.

Running Constantly

When you flush your toilet, this will cause water to run for a few seconds or more. When you start noticing that this running sound is occurring more often, without anyone flushing, there might be something wrong with a part inside the toilet. It could be a damaged flapper valve or a broken float. Some of these items can be replaced very affordably. If you can’t seem to find a problem with any of these moving parts, the problem could be deep within the workings of the toilet and won’t benefit from repairs. Make sure you address this problem quickly. If you leave for the day, you could end up coming home to quite a mess.

Improper Flushing

When you go to flush the toilet a couple of different issues can occur. For one, the water levels might remain lower than normal. Also, the bowl can become clogged. There are a number of issues that could be contributing to your inability to flush. You can make sure that the upper tank portion is filling up with enough water. If this area is fine you can check the bowl and drain to make sure nothing is clogged up.

Leaks

One of the most common reasons a toilet needs to be replaced is a leak of some sort. After many years a toilet will eventually wear out because of a bad seal, broken flanges or cracks that have formed in the base of the toilet. Hopefully you have caught this problem before your floor is ruined by a slow leak. Be sure to have your toilet replaced immediately to prevent further water damage. A crack in your toilet isn’t something that can be fixed and it will only get worse with time.

Other Benefits of Toilet Replacement

In addition to replacing your toilet because of functional issues, there are also some aesthetic benefits to think about. For example, an updated toilet can completely transform the look of your bathroom. You can re-do every other aspect of your bathroom, but if you leave the old toilet in place this can be a big eye sore. Not to mention, the added efficiency you get from your new toilet will help pay for the recent updates.

If you have decided that it is time to replace your toilet and want to speak with a professional about the process, it is important to find a reputable and trustworthy company in your area to do the job. You want to make sure the installation process is done right so that you can trust your bathroom is protected and safe for years to come. They can also help you pick a toilet that will work with your current bathroom setup, improving the aesthetics and he overall function of your bathroom area.