Tag Archives: maintenance

Keeping Pests Out Of Your Property

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Keeping Pests Out Of Your Property

With all of the stress of the COVID-19 pandemic, the last thing anyone wants to be dealing with is pests, too. Especially considering we are all at home so much now! A pest free home is a safe and healthy home and you want to do all you can to prevent infestations as they can get out of hand really quickly. Give your home an inspection with a fine toothed comb to locate any problematic areas which give pests access into your house. Don’t forget to take a look at the following areas:

Doors:

If any of the doors leading into your home are warped from the weather or have gaps in them, then you are, essentially, leaving your door wide open to pests. These will need replaced immediately and it might be a good idea to invest in fiberglass doors as they are very durable and won’t warp. Until you can get new doors installed, be sure to close off any gaps with towels for a makeshift pest barrier in the meantime.

Holes In Screens:

Imagine opening up your windows on a summer’s day with a nice breeze only to find that bugs are being let in. Ugh! Inspecting the screens for both your windows and doors for holes is essential because insects big and small will easily be able to make their way into your home once they are opened. You might think that the small holes aren’t worth purchasing a new screen over but that is where you are wrong. The holes can not only be chewed through but the weather can open them up even more, creating an even bigger problem. No one wants to be swatting flies away when they’re trying to eat dinner!

Holes & Cracks In Walls:

When inspecting your home, the most important thing you can do is look closely at both the interior and exterior of your home for holes and cracks that will need patching up. Pests can make their way through tiny gaps in your front or garage doors and anything like that on your walls or roof is no exception. We are still in the midst of winter, too, and pests will see these weak spots as a welcome invitation to get warm now or cool off in the summer.

Don’t forget to look at your yard for any signs of animal boroughs, which you might have to call in the exterminator for. Speaking of the experts, it is always best to call them in if you are dealing with an infestation than try to do it yourself because you don’t want any pest problems to keep occurring. The best thing you can do is work on preventative measures on your property to keep them from happening in the first place!

Buyer’s Guide When Purchasing Plastic Access Panels

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Buyer’s Guide When Purchasing Plastic Access Panels

Access panels are used in an assortment of projects. They typically have the function of providing people with access to services for maintenance purposes, such as valves, fuses, and switches. Regardless of why you need this item, there is a lot to take into account to ensure you purchase the right plastic access panels for your needs specifically. Keeping that in mind, read on to discover everything you need to consider:

Wall or Ceiling: 

There is only one place to begin and this is by deciding where the access panel is going to be used. This will decipher whether you are going to purchase a wall or ceiling access panel. For example, if you’re looking for plastic panels for your electric fuse box, this will determine what you’re going to need from your access panels. Needless to say, the local electrician will be the best person to turn to for advice on things like this.

Size:

Size is, undoubtedly, a pivotal factor. You need to meet the right balance, because if you go for an access panel that is too small, you might not even benefit from its easy access. However, you don’t want to go for something too big that is going to take over the entire ceiling or wall. From 300 x 300 mm to 550 mm x 1200 mm to bespoke sizes, the options are endless.

Frames:

You also have a choice of different frames. Generally speaking you can choose between a plaster frame, a picture frame, and a beaded frame. A plaster frame is used when access panels are going to be installed into walls to be plastered. A picture from is used where supporting construction is already built. It is worth noting that you will be able to see the frame once it has been installed. Finally, a beaded frame is used in a new-build where the board is skim finished or taped and jointed.

Fire Rating: 

There are various performance benefits you are able to get from your plastic access panels and one of these is in regards to fire. Whilst a lot of access panels are not fire rated you can get those that are one hour or two hour fire rated.

Lock:

On a final note, you should also take the locking system into mind. If you need to benefit from high levels of security this is particularly important, with a lot of people going for a three-point locking system in this instance. Alternatively, you can select an access panel that is tamper proof or has a touch catch system. Budget access panels typically have a very low level of security. You can, of course, have a bespoke system created if you so wish.

There is a lot to consider when buying plastic access panels for your home. Keep the factors above in mind to find the ideal solution for your needs.

Featured Image By: Pixabay

Giving Your Kitchen A Mini Makeover

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Giving Your Kitchen A Mini Makeover

If you had success during your Mini Living Room Makeover, then now might be the time to start turning your attention over to the kitchen. In my opinion, a house is only as great as its kitchen and not only will improving on it increase its functionality but it is also a surefire way to increase your home’s property value, too. Today, we are going to explore some ideas to help start your own mini makeover for your kitchen:

Tend To Maintenance:

The most important thing to do in your kitchen is to first make sure that all of your appliances are working properly. Maintenance like stove repair or a garbage disposal making questionable noises should be tended to immediately as more damage will be caused the longer you hold off. Despite appliance repairs not making a visual difference, they will sure improve your kitchen’s functionality and that’s just as good, if not better.

Add A Backsplash:

Adding a tile backsplash behind your stove or dishwasher is an amazing way to transform your kitchen relatively cheaply and easily. It also gives you the opportunity to have some fun as you decide on how you want your backsplash to look. From sleek monochrome colors to checkered, paisley, or even glitter you are sure to find a tile that will suit the mood you are going for in your kitchen.

If the backsplash you love doesn’t go with your current color scheme, fear not! That is nothing a new coat of paint won’t fix and you can space out these projects for as long as you need.

Storage:

If you proudly have had your ingredients like flour, sugar, and salt displayed in the same jars for years on your countertops, then it might be time to change things up! There are countless cute and functional storage tins and containers to house your most used ingredients in. You could even incorporate some shelving onto your kitchen walls to place them on to help free up counter space.

Storage accessories as well as dish towels, place mats, and dishes are all perfect opportunities to add bright pops of color or patterns into your kitchen. It is also one of the cheaper ways to makeover the space.

Improve The Lighting:

Having good lighting in a kitchen is crucial as you read new recipes, chop veggies, and measure ingredients. Not to mention entertain your guests and family! One of the best ways to improve the lighting in your kitchen if your current situation isn’t up to snuff is to add a few hanging light fixtures in the problem area. They will instantly illuminate your work space, island, or dining area and turn your kitchen into an even brighter space in the house.

The kitchen is the heart of the home and we all want ours to look its best. Follow the mini ideas above to start making big improvements!

5 Tips For Preparing For Your Next Dinner Party (While Quarantined!)

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5 Tips For Preparing For Your Next Dinner Party (While Quarantined!)

As we move into warmer months ahead, you may be nostalgic for the days of sunshiny afternoons and barbecues with friends. While many of us are still in quarantine, we’re all hopeful that life can go back to resembling some form of normalcy in the coming months.

What are some of the things you could do now to prepare your home for friend get-togethers later when the world starts reopening? Let’s go over five easy tips to help you prepare for your next dinner party… all while you are quarantined:

Get your yard under control:

There’s no time like the present when it comes to doing yard work. Trim hedges and bushes. Power washing any exposed concrete, deck boards, or sidewalks is a great way to make your home really seem well taken care of. If weeds are starting to crowd out plants now, get on top of them since they will only get worse as the weather gets better.

Get those windows washed:

Better yet, consider hiring a monthly window cleaner to make sure your house windows shine like the top of the Chrysler building. Smudges from dirty fingers, dog and cat noses, and bugs make a home look messier than it is.

Speaking of bugs…

Call a local pest control to make sure you don’t have any potential critters coming. Yellow jackets, hornets, and wasps are best taken care of in late spring or early summer months, and nobody wants those bugging them at our friendly get-togethers. Mosquitoes, ticks, and other yard bugs can be controlled with a semi-annual pest control visit.

Do that deep cleaning you’ve been putting off:

You can check out an older blog that mentions the cleaning musts that many of us forget when doing deep or spring cleaning. If you’re not a fan of scrubbing floors and the weird crevices in your bathroom, do all the basic cleaning, then hire a company to do the deep cleaning for you. If the weather has turned beautiful in your neck of the woods, open up those doors after you’ve cleaned to get any of the cleaning product scents out of the home while bringing in some fresh air.

Planning makes perfect:

Plan the perfect dinner party ahead of time. When you throw a get-together, it always seems to take more time to organize than what you expect. Run down a list of things that you need to do before you would want people eating and chatting over a delicious dinner at your house. If you need extra utensils, cloth napkins, citronella candles, or tablescape items like tablecloths and vases, research affordable ones and order them online or place a curbside order for them.

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Lovely!

Quarantine life has been difficult, but making the most of it doesn’t have to be. As we transition into some form of new normal, many of us are craving social interaction that we took for granted before. Now is the time to get your home in a great place to host the get-together we’ve all been dreaming of for the past several months once it’s safe to do so!

Featured Image By: Pexels

Blog Maintenance Tips & Tricks

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Blog Maintenance Tips & Tricks

Hiii everyone and TGIF! While I was sick AF a few weeks ago, I found myself worrying a lot about my blog, because I was not well enough to take care of daily maintenance. But, upon returning back to a healthy state of being, I found that I didn’t have anything to worry about, because I have a few tricks up my sleeve. Daily blog maintenance is so important, even when you can’t do it daily. How is that possible? I’m going to show you how:

Prewrite, Please:

You might notice on lifewithlilred that all of my posts are published at midnight every night. That’s compliments of prewriting. At one time, I normally have three to four posts scheduled so that I don’t have to worry about three to four days of writing. That’s why, when I was sick, I could breathe a sigh of relief because I had articles on backstock being published every day. This is the perfect solution for those who don’t have the time to write daily, but might have a free evening to knock out several posts in one sitting.

But, where do you get ideas for multiple posts at once? So glad you asked, because this leads me to my next tip:

Take Notes:

This sounds so basic, I know. But, damnit, if it isn’t the most valuable tip on here. How do I get so many things to prewrite about? Because I take notes on anything and everything for inspiration for future posts. Even if I just need a reminder to write about something the following day, I make note of it, because god knows how easy it is to forget an important memo in one days’ time. My notes range from writing about a new pair of shoes that I just bought to taking pictures next time I go on a hike in one of Ohio’s amazing Metro Parks. Reviewing my notes gives me ample inspo to create daily posts, which is something that is important to me for lifewithlilred.

Create Goals:

This ties into the last sentence of Taking Notes. Creating goals for yourself and things that are important to you for your page definitely can help keep you on track. What’s important to you for your page might be different than anyone else, but that’s part of what makes your blog unique. My goals for my page are to maintain daily posts and to log on at least once per day to interact with my readers in the comments. Once you identify what is important to you when it comes to blogging, every thing else just falls into place.

What are some of your goals for your page? What are some of your tips and tricks when it comes to blogging? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

A Quick Home Maintenance Guide For Homeowners

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A Quick Home Maintenance Guide For Homeowners

Homeowners need to get to grips with home maintenance if they’re going to keep their home running well and comfortable enough to live in. This quick home maintenance guide can give you a few useful tips that will help you to keep on top of things now and in the future:

Keep Your Furnace And HVAC Filters In Working Order:

If you don’t stay on top of your furnace and HVAC filters, dust and grime will accumulate and this will mean they run less efficiently, costing you more money. Allergens and pollutants can also get trapped, and you don’t want those being spread around your home. All you have to do is turn off the system and look at the filters to see if they are grimy. Check these over every year.

Recaulk Your Windows:

Heat loss in the winter happens due to cracks in the windows 80% of the time. Sealing the space around them will help you to solve this issue quickly, so you can keep your home warm and save money. Make sure that you choose the right caulk by speaking to a professional so that you can get it right the first time. If you book in a professional home inspection, they’ll look for this and give you tips on maintaining your home to help protect your investment.

Check Wooden Decks For Moisture:

Wooden decks must be sealed and stained to stop rot and permanent water damage. A splash test will give you a good idea if the sealant is still doing its job. You’ll see droplets on the deck if it’s working. If not, then you need to take the time to reseal your deck, doing this every 2-3 years in total.

Check For Water In The Crawl Space:

You want to avoid mold and water damage to your house as much as possible, so just grab a flashlight and take a look. Have a look for changes in color, the corners, and the edges. You can also use your fingers to see if you feel any dampness. You need to make sure this is fixed before rainy weather comes, as you don’t want to let any more moisture in.

Touching Up Your Exterior Paint:

Your paint greatly contributes to your curb appeal, and staining will help to protect your home from rusting and rotting. Take your time and look for chipping, peeling, blistering, or cracking on every part, every summer. You may, then, need to take your time sanding, scraping, patching, priming, and re-painting small areas.

Maintain Your Fireplace:

If your fire isn’t running the way it should, it could go as far as killing you with toxic gases. At the very least, it’ll take up a lot of energy. It’s always better to build a relationship with a professional that you trust to help you with this. If you have a wood burning fireplace, then it’s especially important to stay on top of maintenance. Creosote is a by-product of burning wood and this can build up in your chimney and create a fire hazard.

Keeping up with simple maintenance will keep your home running smoothly and will save you money in the long run.

Featured Image By: Pixabay

The Ultimate Guide To Appliance Maintenance

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Home appliances can cost a lot of money. If you are on a budget, then it can be a major blow to have to replace or repair one of your frequently used appliances. By taking good care of the appliances that you already have, you can extend their lifespan and avoid having to pay out for new ones. Here are some top tips for keeping your home appliances in good working order for the year:

Refrigerator Maintenance: Almost every home has a refrigerator in it, and you’d be pretty stuck without it, so it is a good idea to keep it well maintained. A good refrigerator can last you up to twenty years if you look after it properly, and you don’t need to do much maintenance on them. The coolant inside the fridge will never need replacing, you just simply need to vacuum the coils on the back of the fridge. A lot of new models these days come with a dust cover to stop anything from getting into the back, so you won’t need to do much maintenance at all.

Be on the lookout for water build up in the tray at the bottom of the fridge, which can cause mold. This can be easily stopped by emptying and cleaning out the tray once in awhile. If your fridge does end up breaking, it is cheaper to get it repaired than to buy a new one. Click here to find repair services in your area. But, if you do end up getting a new fridge, then you need to make sure that you properly prepare it before using it. It needs to be left for twenty four hours before being switched on otherwise the coolant will not settle properly.

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Stove Maintenance: There are many  different types of stoves, and most of them tend to be electric but a lot of people are opting for gas these days. If you want to make your stove last, then you need to give it proper, regular cleaning. Your oven may have a self cleaning option but this will use a lot of electricity and are not always as effective as putting some serious elbow grease into your cleaning. Cleaning it just after using is the best way to maintain your oven.

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Spick and span!

Washing Machine Maintenance: An older washing machine that is not properly looked after can be prone to leaks. This can be very damaging to your home and leave you with an expensive bill. But, there are a few things that you can do to make sure that this doesn’t happen. Most leaks come from the pipe in the back of the machine, so it is best to use a threaded pipe. Avoid over tightening it because this can cause the washer to crack and the washing machine to leak.

Putting too many clothes in at once will also damage the motor in your machine, and putting too much detergent in can cause clogging. Make sure that you measure the correct amount each time to keep your machine running longer. And, if you live in an area with hard water, then it is worth running some vinegar through the machine every so often to stop limescale from building up.

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Cleanliness is godliness!

The Forgotten Home Repair That Became Part of Your Life

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The Forgotten Home Repair That Became Part of Your Life

You’ve probably realized that in life, there are things that we always get used to and it becomes second-nature to us or we take it for granted. For instance, if you’re sitting at a computer right now or using your smartphone to read this article, then there are probably some muscle-memory maneuvers that you’ve practiced over and over again which became so natural that you don’t even think about it.

This is just the result of our brain getting used to something. If we repeat a task long enough, it becomes something that we do without thinking. This is, sadly, something that can have both a positive and negative effect. The negative typically comes in the form of things that we do at home and most of the time it has to do with home repairs.

Think about your home and try to pinpoint some home repairs that you never got around to. That crack in the wall near your front entrance? Yes, the one you’ve hidden behind a painting for how long. Or what about the lower water pressure on one of the taps in your bathroom? You didn’t think it was much of an issue and you deal with it every morning, but is it really normal for a tap to dribble water like that instead of pouring it out? The answer is no, btw! Here are some things that you should look into getting fixed before it causes any more problems in your home:

Fixing things before they get too bad:

Faults around the home are often the result of some underlying issues. If left for too long, it could negatively effect our lives and even cause more damage than you’d expect. For instance, a leaky pipe might not be much of an issue now and you’ll probably deal with it by putting a dish underneath the pipe to collect the water, or you might take it a step further and plug the pipe with something. However, that doesn’t change the fact that you have a crack in the pipe that can grow larger and eventually cause a lot of damage to your entire plumbing system. A quick Google search of “plumbers near me” will reveal dozens of services that are more than willing to perform inspections and fix your issues, no matter how minor they seem. Just remember to take every home repair seriously so that they don’t spiral out of control.

Fixing things before you need them:

Remember that faulty air conditioner in your home that broke towards the end of last summer? Perhaps you haven’t used your air conditioning unit for a while because we’re only in spring, but why not fix it before summer comes? A broken air conditioner that spits out less air or isn’t as cool as it should be is a faulty one. Perhaps you didn’t mind because it was the tail end of summer and the days were getting shorter, but that doesn’t mean that you should leave it broken and force it to become part of your life. Never settle for broken or faulty appliances and always repair them to get the most value out of them and to prevent them from developing more faults!

Featured Image By: Pexels

Things To Fix Ahead of Summer

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Things To Fix Ahead of Summer

Summer is such an amazing season. The weather gets warmer, people get happier, things are generally a lot more relaxing and laid back. There’s not a lot to grumble about – unless you haven’t made the preparations to enjoy this time of the year as much as you could have done. The more dormant months that make up winter into spring are the ones that need to be utilized in order to get everything ready and raring to go to make this year a summer to remember!

In The Garden: There’s a lot in the back yard that we put to good use in the summer months. Things like barbecues, furniture, and the garden in general all need a good seeing to before the warmer weather hits. Ideally, barbecues should be stored inside a place like a shed or garden room in order to prevent rusting or at the least have a cover on them to protect them from the colder weather that the winter months throws at them.

If you haven’t done this, now is the time to get out the wire brushes and go to town on cleaning it down and making it safe for further use. Furniture, especially if wooden, needs to have a lick of weatherproof paint to keep it in excellent condition for the next couple of months. While plants and grass tend to get out of control once the sun starts to beat down on them, there is a time when they are dormant and more manageable. Getting on top of the garden before the garden gets on top of you is definitely the way to go!

In The House: We all know that summer, in the majority of cases, means warmer weather. This means that we need to make plans for getting ourselves cooler and back to a normal body temperature again. It is so easy to overheat without realizing it, and the chances of dehydrating yourself are greater during this period of the year. If you know that your air conditioning was giving up the ghost at the end of last year, consider getting an ac repair service done to get it back to good working order. Ensure that everything that keeps things cool is working, like your fridge and freezer. The last thing you want is for either of these things to fail in weather that the food is more likely to turn bad in. And it would be a shame for all of those delicious popsicles to melt into a sticky juice!

In The Car: Unsurprisingly, most car failures happen in extreme weathers of either hot or cold. Making sure that you are carrying a spare bottle of water around with you, should your car start to overheat, can be a lifesaver if you’re stuck out on the road without a service station nearby. Make sure that you pack extra snacks and water for yourself, too, just in case the worst happens. The last thing that you want is to be stranded with your tummy rumbling – especially in the heat! #myworstnightmare

Featured Image By: Pexels

Home Upgrades Guaranteed To Attract Buyers

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Home Upgrades Guaranteed To Attract Buyers

Buying a home is a momentous occasion in many people’s lives. The process can be daunting, long, and full of highs and lows –  most of us have experienced the drama of finding our supposed dream home, only to lose out on it at the very last minute. Yes, the property market can be fickle. But it is also worth being realistic about it. Very few people actually stay in their first home, or even their second homes, forever. As homes are progressing in value all of the time and as people start to need more room for whatever reason (children being the most common cause), buying and selling property is something many of us do every few years.

But, if you thought that buying a home was hard, just wait until you start selling! Trying to find a buyer for your property that meets your requirements can be a laborious process, and there’s nothing worse than having to drop your asking price because you’re not sure how else to attract a buyer. This, however, should only ever be seen as a last resort. There are plenty of other things that you can do to raise the value of your home so that when it’s time for it to go on the market, you just know you’ll be swarmed with offers:

Get Any Maintenance Issues Fixed: If you’re planning on being out of your house in a few months, it can be tempting to leave that annoying maintenance issue for the next tenants to deal with. However, this could potentially cost you the sale of the house. Buyers aren’t stupid, especially when there is such a huge amount of money at stake.  Don’t try to pull the wool over anyone’s eyes, because you just risk the buyer pulling out at the last moment when they find out what is truly wrong with the house. Spend some time and money getting any outstanding issues fixed – it will pay off, we promise!

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Handy is dandy!

Spruce Up The Outside Of Your Home: It’s easy to see why most people spend money on decorating the inside of their homes as opposed to the outside – after all, it’s what’s on the inside that counts, right? Wrong! Well, to an extent anyways. Most buyers now turn to the internet to seek out available properties these days, and the first picture that they are likely to see will be a shot of your home’s exterior. This is your one chance to make a good impression, so make it count! If, for example, you have a large double garage, but it is let down by some ugly titanium doors, find somewhere local that can provide great garage doors to spruce the exterior up a little. Giving your door a lick of paint and adding some shrubs and plants to brighten the place up can also increase the value of your home more than you might think.

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Focus On The Kitchen & Bathroom: If you have a limited budget for the pre-selling remodel, it is wise to focus your attention on either the kitchen or the bathroom. These tend to be the most used rooms in the house, and for that reason, they are also the most expensive to remodel. Your buyer will appreciate having a ready-made kitchen or bathroom that they can start using straight away, so if you are going to remodel any part of your property, make sure it is one of these two rooms.

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The Eiffel Tower is a nice touch! 😉

Give the inner and outer exteriors of your home a run through, and nitpick what you can find to fix or spruce up to raise your property value today!

Featured Image By: BlogSpot