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Common Causes of Air Conditioner Problems

Posted by on Aug 26, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Common Causes of Air Conditioner Problems

The air conditioner is an essential module in a residential building because it allows cooling, ventilation and even heating. When the system is operating optimally, you will enjoy proper functionality and relatively low electricity bills. On the other hand, if the air conditioner malfunctions, it will result in poor operation and high costs in terms of repairs and energy bills. Therefore, it is important for you to understand the root of common problems such as unstable temperatures, failure to turn on, increased energy demands and even strange noises. Here are the primary causes of most air conditioner problems. Refrigerant Leaks The refrigerant is the compound that allows heat exchange in the air conditioning system. It absorbs heat from the interior spaces and dissipates it through the outdoor units. In addition, it cools the air flowing into the home and consequently regulates the temperatures. If the system is no longer cooling your building effectively, there might be a refrigerant leak. This is caused by a perforation or a tear in the tubes which allow the flow of the fluid. It is crucial to engage a serviceperson for repairs if your refrigerant-charged system is experiencing this type of problem. In a ducted central air conditioner, lack of cooling could also indicate a leak in the air ducts so ask the repair experts to scrutinise the system for other problems. Electric Control Failure The electrical system is responsible for powering the air conditioner; therefore, its failure will cause appliance malfunction. The fans and other moving components in the AC unit are susceptible to wearing out when the system is forced to shut down and turn on the power frequently. In simple terms, the air conditioner operates intermittently to keep the temperatures consistent. If the system is oversized, the electrical flow will have to be interrupted repeatedly, leading to a breakdown. Problems can also arise from the corrosion of wires and damage of terminals so check the condition of these elements if you suspect the issue is electrical. Poor Maintenance Maintenance is essential in promoting proper functionality of every air conditioning system. Unfortunately, most homeowners neglect important servicing tasks until the units finally break down. You can eliminate the need for extensive repairs by changing the filters to promote proper air flow. If these are clogged they will cause the system to work harder and strain. You should also wipe the AC coils to promote proper heat exchange between the air and refrigerant. Visit a site like to learn more about AC servicing. You should always engage a licensed repair professional for the repair tasks to avoid mediocre...

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How To Fit A Belfast Sink

Posted by on Aug 14, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on How To Fit A Belfast Sink

A traditional, ceramic Belfast or butler sink can be a real aesthetic focal point in a newly renovated kitchen.  Belfast sinks look great in a country-style kitchen and can be bought new from kitchen retailers or picked up more cheaply from antique fairs or reclamation yards.  This is not a project for a beginner and would best suit those with some DIY and woodworking skills.  If you’re unsure of what you’re doing, you’re best advised to consult a professional installation contractor, such as Wallspan Kitchens & Wardrobes.  The whole job should take you a day to complete. Here’s how to fit and install your Belfast sink. What to do First of all, make sure that the existing pipework and plumbing will comfortably reach the site for your new sink.  You may find that you have to extend the hot and cold pipes and the waste disposal system pipework in order to comfortably accommodate the new sink.  Carry out any necessary alterations to the pipework before you begin the installation.   Because of its weight, a correctly-fitted Belfast sink should have an overhang to the front and rear of at least 10mm.  When making the cut-out in the work surface where the sink is to sit, ensure that it’s deep enough to allow the top of the front top edge of the sink to overhang by half the thickness of width of the sink wall.  This ensures that the sink is adequately supported and stable in the work surface.   The cut-out must be accurate.  Rather than using a jigsaw for this job, use jigs and a router to get a more precise result.  (Jigs and routers are electronically-powered woodworking tools used for cabinet-making tasks like hollowing out and planing).   When assembling the rails and supports, remember to allow at least a 5mm gap between the edges of the sink and end walls to allow for expansion.  It’s a good idea to have a trial run and fit everything together roughly before fixing it permanently into place.   When you’re happy that everything fits correctly, fit the under-sink rails and work surface supports beneath the cut-out, ensuring that all the incumbent fittings are in the correct position. Use beaded silicone to fix the sink to the base unit and allow the fixing to set.  It’s best to allow at least 24 hours for the silicone to completely ‘go off’.   Re-connect all the pipework, making sure that the cold and hot water pipes are connected to the correct taps.   Finally, take the aerator off the tap and flush the system by turning on the water at the shut off valves.  Allow the water to run for a few minutes then reconnect the...

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5 Options To Enhance the Privacy of Your Patio

Posted by on Jul 30, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 5 Options To Enhance the Privacy of Your Patio

In Australia an outdoor area such as a patio is the perfect way to entertain friends and family while providing the space to enjoy a flexible indoor/outdoor living lifestyle. Privacy is a key consideration when designing a liveable patio solution, especially as blocks are becoming smaller and new homes are built closer together. To prevent your patio being overlooked by neighbouring homes and those from the street, these five options all offer varying levels of privacy, with a number of different designs to suit different home styles.  1. Privacy Screens Privacy screens are among the most popular option to add privacy. Depending on the style of screen chosen they usually include timber or aluminium slats. These slats vary in width, but are usually between 3-5cm, with about the same size gap to allow light and air to pass through. There are also privacy screens with no gaps between slats but instead with adjustable louvres. These allow homeowners the flexibility of opening or closing slats, similar to Venetian style blinds. Bi-folding shutter-style solutions that can be pulled back or partially closed are another option. Privacy screens are available in a number of colours and often are used in modern properties. 2. Latticework Latticework is a crisscross pattern of timber strips in a diagonal pattern, but it may be also available from other materials. Lattices can suit many different styles of traditional homes, especially heritage or plantation style homes, raised Queenslander homes and workers cottages. Often latticework is heavy in its appearance, but it provides a high level of privacy and a natural look with pine being one of the most affordable types of timber to use. Be sure to use treated timber to prevent fungal growth when wet and to deter termites. One of the other benefits of latticework is that it can be used in conjunction with climbing plants such as jasmine or bougainvillea as a way to decorate and add additional privacy to a patio. 3. Privacy Sails Shade sails are one of the most inexpensive ways to provide a high level of privacy, while still allowing enough transparency for light to pass through. They are usually made from a tightly woven synthetic fabric. As well as being stretched across the side or front of the patio to add privacy from neighbours, sails can also be used as a roof to provide shade in uncovered patios but will not provide shelter from wet weather. 4. Trees and Shrubs Trees may take time to grow but can be a completely natural way to block unwanted views and also shield your home from prevailing winds. Trees and shrubs can also help to provide a natural shade and cooling solution for the patio area and other areas of the home. Be sure to consider roots, soil type and the adult size of the tree so there is sufficient room for growth. 5. Privacy Walls Of course if you want to block out neighbouring homes completely and ‘build in’ part of the patio, a custom constructed privacy wall may be the best permanent solution to enclose one end or section of the patio. These can be made from a number of materials, with masonry solutions such as retaining walls some of the most attractive, but also the most expensive. Brick walls may...

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What To Consider When Designing Your Ducted Vacuum System

Posted by on Jul 22, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on What To Consider When Designing Your Ducted Vacuum System

Ducted vacuums system is an exciting product to have. It works differently from other vacuums since you don’t have to drag a bulky vacuum along as you work, it’s installed throughout the house and it offers more subtle function thanks to a discreetly tucked-away motor. If you’re planning to get a ducted vacuum system for your home, it’s important to make sure you tailor your product as per your home layout. To do so, you need to evaluate a several factors: How many inlets do you need? The number of inlets you choose for your ducted system is very important. That’s because you need to ensure the inlets you choose service the entire house perfectly. If you choose too many inlets, you’ll end up installing more ducts and that will raise your installation costs. To determine the inlets you need, you first need to map your entire floor space. Large rooms like the living room can have a dedicated inlet. However, smaller rooms like bedrooms can be served one inlet located close by on the corridor. You should strive to keep your inlets as few as possible but enough so that you can clean each part of your house easily and without needing a very long hose. What motor size is right for your home? Next, you also need to evaluate the size of motor you need. Ducted vacuum motors are available in different sizes. Larger motors provide more suction power. However, they also consume more power. You therefore need to find the right balance so that your ducted motor is large enough to suck dirt from all the inlets but is not too large such that it’s consuming too much energy. An installation technician can advice on the appropriate size (usually rated in Airwatts) after inspecting the size of your home. Bagged or bag-less vacuum? Size aside, ducted motors also collect dirt differently. Some feature dust bags while others (bag-less) use filters. Each offers different maintenance needs. With the former, you need to empty the bag periodically. With the latter, you need to clean the filters and replace. Self-cleaning filters that need less maintenance are also available. If torn between the two, you can choose a motor with both options and later test which works best for you. Choosing your accessories Once you have chosen your motor and mapped where to install your inlets, all that remains is to choose the accessories. First up is the inlet. You can get these in different colors to accentuate your walls. You can also install floor-mounted inlets ‘vacpans’ which let you sweep and remove dirt from the floors through the vacuum system. Next, choose a hose set that best suits your needs. Here, you get to choose the hose length you need plus different brush types e.g. carpet brushes, tile brushes and even mattress or sofa vacuum brushes. Once done, you can now have your unit installed as you wait to use your powerful, light and contemporary cleaning...

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Tips For Choosing Blind and Curtain Fabric

Posted by on Jul 7, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Tips For Choosing Blind and Curtain Fabric

The choice of materials available for blinds and curtains can be overwhelming.  If you’re struggling to decide what to use, here are a few tips to help you make a decision. Location, location The location of the window will have a big influence on the type of fabric you choose.  If the window is exposed to bright sunlight for much of the day, you might want to choose a thick fabric, like damask for instance, that will block out the sun and protect your furniture and carpets from fading.  Alternatively, you may prefer a lighter-weight material that will give you privacy but still allow the light in.  Be careful if you decide to use silk, as prolonged exposure to sunlight could cause this natural material to rot over time.  You can protect silk curtains and blinds from sun damage by lining them with cotton which is more robust. If the window is situated in an exposed position, where it’s prone to letting in draughts, choose a heavy-weight fabric.  Draught-excluding materials are available for both blinds and curtains, or alternatively, use heavy-weight cotton to line a light-weight fabric. Lastly, give consideration to the style and look of the room.  Plain, block colours will look better against contemporary décor and furnishings, whereas cheerful chintz would complement a country-style room. A good tip is to obtain samples of potential fabrics.  Hold the sample up to the window to see just how much light it lets through.  See how the material’s colour and texture works against the other elements of décor in the room before you make a final decision.  Curtains, blinds or a combination of both Whether you choose curtains or blinds is partly a matter of taste and partly down to practicality.  For example, blinds work better in kitchens and bathrooms because you can choose special water-resistant materials that won’t bubble, fade or shrink in steamy conditions.    Some fabrics work better for blinds than for curtains.  For example, heavy cotton material will stay in shape perfectly in a Roman blind, but a lighter fabric will lose its form over time and won’t hang straight. Another consideration when choosing fabric is whether to go for a plain or a patterned look.  If you have a small window, don’t choose a large pattern. You won’t be able to see enough of it, and consequently, the window dressing might look too small and out of place.  A good look for large windows is a combination of patterned curtains with a colour-coordinated, plain Roman blind placed behind them.  How much you have to spend Your choice of fabric for your window dressings will depend, to an extent, on the budget you have available.  There’s no doubt that blinds are the cheaper option, as less material is needed to make them. The cost of curtains can be reduced by using a cheaper fabric but lining it with good quality cotton or silk to give the finished item a more luxurious feel.  Buy a small amount of expensive fabric in coordinating colours and use it to make accessories like cushion covers or bolsters instead. There are many things to take into consideration when choosing fabric for your blinds or curtains.  Think about the purpose of the window dressing, the style that you’d like to use and...

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Home Security Upgrade: Reinforcing the Vulnerable Access Points

Posted by on Jun 15, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Home Security Upgrade: Reinforcing the Vulnerable Access Points

The security status of your home should be assessed periodically to ensure that the property is sufficiently safeguarded. In addition, it is important to upgrade the security measures because the defence strategies and locking gadgets can become obsolete with time. This will protect you from unscrupulous intruders such as burglars and robbers. There are different access points into a residential building, and these are viewed as opportunities by people seeking to gain unauthorized access. Here is a list of the most vulnerable parts of the house and some tips on increasing the security. Front Door The front door is vulnerable to infiltration by burglars, particularly when you are absent. If your exterior residential door has a weak lock, an intruder will be able to pick it and gain access to your home without drawing attention. You should examine your existing door lock and consult your locksmith for thorough assessment. There are different types of front door locks in the security market so you will be spoilt for choice. One of the best products in terms of durability, reliability and general security is the deadbolt lock. You can also install keyless entry locks which require fingerprint access, combination code or a card for access. Back and Side Doors The entrances facing the side and backyards are very susceptible to attacks by burglars because they are not easily visible. Moreover, examine any specialty doors such as sliding glass doors for any apparent weakness. If you find the measures lacking, you should ask your locksmith to install a one-sided deadbolt on these doors. This will limit access from outside because the lock is only accessible from inside the house. In addition, you should consider installing floodlights, preferably motion-activated ones. This will serve to deter burglars at night and increase the feeling of security within the house. Windows The windows are overlooked by many homeowners because they seem to be out of reach. This can be a very costly mistake in relation to personal safety and the security of assets. If you have old windows which are vulnerable to breakage, you should consider replacing or repairing them. If possible, install safety glass because it resists mechanical impact better than normal float glass. In addition, install secure locks or upgrade the existing ones on all your windows. It is also advisable to make certain that the locks are visible because this can discourage intruders. Choosing the right product can be challenging, so you should consult your locksmith for technical advice. For more information, contact a business such as Nelson...

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How to Remodel Your Bathroom for Effortless Cleaning

Posted by on Jun 8, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on How to Remodel Your Bathroom for Effortless Cleaning

You know what style you want, you know what colours you’re after, and you’re pretty well set on whether to include a rubber duck. However, you might not have considered the way in which your bathroom renovation will affect your cleaning time. It isn’t something that people commonly take into account when they’re picking taps and inspecting baths, but it’s well worth thinking about. After all, a few changes could mean a lot less time scrubbing. Read this article for a few ideas.  Install Wall-Mounted Fixtures and Faucets Cleaning around the bottom of the toilet and sink is one of the nastiest jobs that comes with bathroom cleaning. Wouldn’t it be great if you could skip that step altogether? Good news: you can. Simply pick wall-mounted sinks and toilets. They don’t connect to the floor at all, so no grime can build up at the edges. Instead you’ll have an unbroken floor area – much easier to clean. You should also consider installing wall-mounted taps. Taps mounted directly on the sink or bath are extremely difficult to clean. Mounting them to the wall will make it far easier to clean both them and the bath or sink beneath. Use Larger Tiles on the Floor Bigger tiles make a room appear larger and more open, so they’re often used in modern bathroom designs. Of course, you might fancy laying down lots of smaller tiles instead, but you should stop to consider how this will affect your cleaning schedule. Put simply, more tiles equal more grout lines. Since larger tiles obviously cover a larger surface area, you’ll use far less grouting when you lay them down, and that means metres and metres of extra lines which you don’t need to laboriously scrub clean each week.  Even if you don’t want to abandon your smaller tiles, consider only using them as accents for larger ones. Open Up Your Storage Space Like taps and fixtures, shelves are also easy to lift off the floor for quicker cleaning. You should also think about removing the doors and making shelves as open as possible. Bathroom cabinets quickly become filled with a multitude of items, many of which should just have been thrown away. The bathroom might look cleaner, but that mess is still there. Using an open storage solution, such as shelves or door-less cabinets, helps stop you and your family from filling them up with useless junk, since everything is on display. It’s also far easier to wipe down an open shelf than it is to get into the nooks and crannies of a closed-off cabinet.  Make these changes when remodelling your bathroom, and you’ll be able to spend more time soaking in the tub and less time scouring the floor. For more information, contact local contracts that specialize in bathroom...

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Outdoor Patios: 4 Inspired Ideas to Transform Patios into Play Spaces for Children

Posted by on May 19, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Outdoor Patios: 4 Inspired Ideas to Transform Patios into Play Spaces for Children

Fed up of television, smartphones and video games taking over your household? Patios are an excellent choice for transforming wasted outdoor space into an aesthetically appealing and operationally functional area for the whole family to enjoy together. Creating eclectic outdoor living spaces is bound to draw the kids away from those mind-numbing gaming consoles and television sets and stimulate their minds and inspire their creativity. Here are some ideas to transform patios into play spaces for kids.  Create a Car Wash Area   You can get really creative with this idea to let your kids cool off from the blazing summer sun. By adding a small water area like a makeshift play car wash, get your kids to splash around and enjoy the summer heat. The kiddie car wash lets children enter and leave through plastic flaps that resemble an actual car wash. The pipe with holes runs along the roof and several spray jets are placed on the sides to release water on the children as they ride through this improvised car wash. Patios offer the children a chance to enjoy the outdoors, while parents can supervise them while catching up on their favourite books.  Simulate a Beach With a Sandbox Arrangement Create a sandbox area to simulate the look of the beach in your backyard. This is bound to keep children occupied, as they creatively build castles and play in the sand. All you need to do is to create sand area with planks of PVC or wood by holding the joining the edges of each plank together. This simple arrangement is big on the fun element for your kids to thoroughly enjoy outdoor playtime. Transform Tyres into a Jungle Gym Get some old unused tyres together and stack them on top of each other to create an unusual jungle gym playing area for the children. To make it look appealing for kids, paint each tyre with an attractive bright colour to make the space along patios eye-catching. Tyre jungle gyms are safe for kids to use, even when they fall and it encourages them to engage in healthy recreational activities. Outdoor Music Station Patios are as much for inspiring creativity as they are for recreation. If your child has an inclination towards music, why not create an outdoor music station for patios? Add pipe drums, improvised utensils and makeshift guitars to let the kids go wild with delight. Sure, it makes a bit of noise but it motivates them to think imaginatively and it certainly beats watching them slowly lose their minds playing video...

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Choosing a dog-friendly timber flooring solution for your home

Posted by on Apr 29, 2015 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

For a well-loved family dog, every consideration is made to ensure their comfort, health and exercise requirements are fulfilled. It can be difficult, however, if you have your heart set on a timber floor and your home is occupied by a rambunctious four-legged friend or two. Never fear—your fur babies can cohabitate with your perfect timber floor, but it is important to choose the right floor for your circumstances. Let’s look at some helpful tips for choosing a dog-friendly timber flooring solution for your home. Selecting the right wood Not all woods have been created equal. When selecting the wood for your pet-friendly floor, the cost and level of durability will be your major considerations. Keeping a timber floor with pets necessitates a certain amount of surface scratching over time, and if you are not comfortable with this wear and tear then a wood-style laminate or vinyl flooring may be more suited to your needs. When selecting a wood, opt for a hardwood that has high durability, as these woods will be resistant to scratches and dents. The most durable hardwood floors are Brazilian walnut and hard maple, however they also carry a substantial price tag. For a more cost-effective yet highly durable wood flooring solution, consider a bamboo floor that has been treated with hard resins. While it is not technically a wood, bamboo produces a beautiful and resilient floor, perfect for pet paws and family wear. Selecting the right finish For the hardiest, most pet-friendly timber floor, prefinished timber flooring is sealed with a urethane finish that will provide the greatest resistance to the claws of your four-legged friends. Avoid a slippery high-gloss finish, as your pet will be likely to not only create more scratches, but slip and potentially injure themselves. If your pet is prone to the occasional ‘accident’, speak to your local timber flooring specialist for advice on a moisture-resistant floor sealant. Making your dog timber floor-friendly The best tip for preserving the finish and visual appeal of your timber floor from pet damage is to keep you dog’s claws trimmed and blunt at all times. Additionally, minimise pet accidents by toilet training prior to installing a wood floor, and ensuring your dog receives adequate daily exercise. For more advice on regional timbers and the latest in durable sealants, contact a timber flooring specialist like Wonson Bros. Timber Pty Ltd to discuss your timber floor needs in greater...

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Choosing the Right Type of Water Heater for Your Home

Posted by on Apr 17, 2015 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

The water heater you have in your home is very important as it’s usually one of the largest consumers of electricity, and needs to work to meet your demands for hot water throughout the day. For those with a large family who use lots of hot water or those on a budget, the choice of water heater you buy will be important. Note a few of the choices you have today and some factors to consider. 1. Water Heater Tanks These are the most common types of water heaters and they work by storing a certain amount of water in a tank that is then heated by a heating element. Once the temperature of the water drops or the tank starts to be emptied, it fills with more water and begins heating it again. Water heater tanks are usually the least expensive to install, but you need to ensure you purchase one that will hold enough water for everyone in the family. Price alone shouldn’t be your determining factor, as you may easily run out of hot water with a smaller tank. It’s also good to remember that the tank will heat water once the temperature drops even if you’re not using the water, so consider adding an insulating cover to it during cold winter months. 2. Tankless Heaters A tankless heater has a heating element over which water passes once faucets or the shower are turned on, and the water is heated as it flows through the pipes. It does not store water in a tank so you never run out of hot water, and aren’t heating water when it’s not needed. It can be the most affordable type of water heater to own and is good for homes that aren’t always occupied, as you won’t waste electricity keeping water hot when it’s not being used. However, tankless heaters may not allow for a strong flow of water since the water moves somewhat slower through the pipes in order to be heated, and they are usually more expensive to purchase and install than water heater tanks. 3. Solar Water Heaters Solar water heaters are tanks that are hooked up to solar panels, which deliver stored power right to the tank itself. These are also usually very expensive to install but much cheaper to operate as of course you don’t pay for solar power. They are also a good choice for those that are environmentally-conscious, as creating electricity in a power plant means generating pollution, whereas solar power is a much cleaner source of energy. For more information, contact Solar...

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