Window Washing Mistakes To Avoid

Posted by on Jul 6, 2016 in Uncategorized |

If you have large picture windows that allow light to cascade into your home, then you likely want to keep these windows as clean as possible so they are easy to peer through. However, most people see window washing as a chore. If you feel this way, then you may be cleaning your windows the wrong way. If you want to learn about some window washing mistakes that should be avoided, keep reading. Mistake – Scrubbing Windows Clean Some people insist on washing windows with wadded up cloths, paper towels, or newspapers. When you apply a cleaner to your windows and scrub at the glass, you are simply moving all of that dirt around. Also, by rubbing the glass, you are creating friction. This causes electrically charged particles to cling to the surface of the window. When positively charged electrons cling to the glass, static electricity is created, and the glass becomes a magnet that attracts dirt and debris. This means the entire process of scrubbing the windows can lead to the accumulation of even more dust and dirt. If you do not want to attract dirt, then simply stop scrubbing the windows. Purchase a thick and wide squeegee to help remove dirt and soap instead of buffing the surface of the glass. Press the squeegee head against the window with a small amount of pressure and sweep the head across the glass with long sweeping motions. Use a cloth to wipe debris from the squeegee head before making another pass. Mistake – Using Strong Cleaning Products Many window washing solutions contain ammonia, and ammonia is a good cleaning agent. However, the cleaner is quite strong and is only really needed if your windows contain a layer of grease. Ammonia can cause respiratory issues, and it can burn the skin if it is spilled. If your windows are only slightly dirty, then all you need is a cleaning agent that will pull up the dirt from the glass so it can be rinsed or scraped away with a squeegee.  Regular dish soap is a great window cleaner. The soap molecules will attach themselves to the dirt on the window surface so it can be removed. Place a squirt of dish soap in a bucket with warm water. Apply the soapy water with a long window washing strip applicator. This is a type of brush that is made to wash larger windows. Make several passes with the brush to clean the windows and then squeegee the dirt, soap, and water away. Complete a final rinse with water and squeegee the water away to leave clean windows behind.  For more information, contact Gainer Windows & Doors or a similar...

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Four Chalk Games to Play With Your Kids on Your New Asphalt Driveway

Posted by on Apr 6, 2016 in Uncategorized |

When you finally take the plunge to upgrade a gravel driveway to a paved one, you’ll not only be increasing the curb appeal of your home, but you’ll also have a brand-new play area to keep your children entertained — which is especially ideal if you want to keep young children from straying from your property. Skilled asphalt contractors will ensure that your new driveway is smooth, which will serve as the perfect “blackboard” for chalk-based games that should ideally engage your children for hours. Once the new driveway has dried, buy a large box of coloured sidewalk chalk and consider these different games for your children. Customize Your Body Children with vivid imaginations will love lying on the newly paved driveway while you carefully trace the outline of their bodies. Then, it’s time to engage your children’s minds and get them to brainstorm “people” they’d like to be. Then colour the body shapes accordingly. A police officer, firefighter, pop star, baseball player and superhero, as well as a long list of other appealing characters, can then be drawn onto each child’s silhouette to let your children’s imagination run wild — all within the safe confines of your new driveway. Alphabet or Number Test It’s ideal to make some children’s games focused around learning, and you can achieve this goal by drawing the letters of the alphabet or the numbers one through ten in a random order throughout the newly paved driveway. Provided your children are of the right age, you can then provide instructions for the kids to run to a certain letter or number. For older children, you can get creative by getting them to run to the letters to spell simple words, or you can pose basic arithmetic problems and have them run to the answer. Traffic Game Whether your kids are into playing with toy cars or are creative enough to imagine themselves behind the wheel of their own make-believe cars, you can create a virtual city on the asphalt driveway with chalk. Draw a series of streets, buildings and other city-related sights and have your children either play on the virtual city with their toys or, if you’ve drawn a larger-scale city, pretend to drive by moving around the streets and “steering” when they turn. Xs and Os Older children who can grasp the concept of tic-tac-toe will have fun drawing game boards on the asphalt and then placing their Xs and Os accordingly. When one game is over, they can simply move over a few inches and draw another game board — use a chalk scoreboard elsewhere on the driveway to keep track of the winners. If you have yet to pave your...

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Five Ways To Make Retaining Walls A Focal Point In Your Landscape Design

Posted by on Feb 4, 2016 in Uncategorized |

If you need a retaining wall in your yard for structural or practical purposes, such as to improve drainage or eliminate a hilly area that’s tough to mow, don’t feel like it has to be just a ho-hum feature or an eyesore to be covered up with shrubs. Here are five ways you can make a retaining wall a focal point in your landscape and turn a regular wall into the best part of your yard. Make It Into a Seating Area If you have a short retaining wall, you can turn it into extra seating. This works especially well if the wall curves around a patio or flat space you could turn into a gathering area. Build the wall out of sturdy and thick materials, like heavy stone, and layer slabs of stone across the top to provide places for people to sit. You can always add weather-proof cushions if the bare stone feels too uncomfortable. Create a Fire Pit If you have a flat area at the top of your retaining wall, why not place your seating there, and build a fire pit into the wall itself? This is a great option when you have enough space to create a thick enough wall that it can both retain earth and hold wood or stones, the latter for a propane-fueled fire. Turn It Into a High Planter Do you wish you could keep your dogs or kids out of your carefully maintained garden? A retaining wall can be used as a high planter to protect plants from damage and to try out species you might not be able to grow elsewhere. Because you can change the type of soil in the wall, you can grow succulents that need a sandy environment, for example, or flowers like hydrangeas that prefer highly acidic earth. A planted retaining wall also adds height variation to your garden, which makes it more interesting. Build a Terrace If you have a long sloping area that you would like to eliminate with a retaining wall, it’s an ideal spot to put in a terraced garden. Terracing has been used for centuries in places like Asia to maximize the growing area for rice and other crops. You don’t have to do anything nearly as dramatic, but you can take a lesson from this type of landscaping efficiency. Rather than having one wall, a terrace garden uses several levels, with plants at each one. You can grow flowers, vegetables, and herbs in flat beds or create a more natural looking rock garden with alpine or similar plants. You could even build in a cascading water feature for the sound and visual beauty of your own little stream....

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2 Tips For Keeping Your Outdoor Teak Furniture Looking Great

Posted by on Dec 5, 2015 in Uncategorized |

Teak furniture is a great choice for your porch, patio or other outdoor living space. Not only is it strikingly beautiful, but it’s also very easy to clean and maintain. Plus, it’s designed to withstand the rain and other elements, so it can last much longer than many outdoor furniture options. Even though it might be easy to take care of, your teak furniture will still need some maintenance. By taking good care of your teak furniture, you can ensure that your teak furniture is always nice and clean so that it looks its best. You can also help protect it from the elements even more. 1. Keep it Clean First of all, you should make sure that you clean your outdoor teak furniture regularly. Cleaning your outdoor furniture regularly will help get rid of bird droppings, mildew and other things that can cause permanent staining or that can simply make your furniture look bad. When cleaning your outdoor teak furniture, make sure that you use a gentle soap. You don’t want to use any harsh chemicals that could damage to the furniture. Instead, simply mix a little bit of mild dish soap in with a bucket full of water, and gently scrub your furniture from top to bottom with a soft rag. If there are any stains, use a bristled cleaning brush to thoroughly yet gently scrub them away. Just make sure that you do not leave any soap on your furniture after cleaning, since it can make your furniture more prone to getting dirty. In-between cleanings, you can simply spray away dirt and debris with your water hose. You can also use a pressure washer to thoroughly clean your furniture with ease. 2. Add a Protective Oil Have you ever thought about adding a protective oil to your furniture? A good oil that is designed for use on teak furniture can help really bring out the shine in your furniture and make it look its best. Plus, it can help protect it from the elements. If you keep your furniture outdoors, however, you should know that you will need to reapply more oil on a more frequent basis than you would if the furniture was kept indoors. Outdoor teak furniture is a fantastic choice if you’re looking for an attractive and long-lasting furniture option. Luckily, following these two simple tips should help you keep your outdoor furniture looking great for a long time to come. For more information about caring for your teak furniture, contact a furniture dealer such as the Teak...

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Answers To 3 Of Your Most Important Questions About Drip Irrigation Sprinkler Systems

Posted by on Sep 17, 2015 in Uncategorized |

As a homeowner, the outside appearance of your home is likely to be as important as its interior. A huge part of its exterior appeal relates to the overall condition of your yard, so an effective watering system is essential. Fortunately, a drip irrigation sprinkler can deliver exactly the amount of water that you want your yard to have, while wasting very little of that valuable resource and saving time. How Efficient Is Drip Irrigation? It is first necessary to consider the current statistics about drip irrigation. Current information is that at least 90% of the water provided through drip irrigation is usable by the plants. That can be compared to standard sprinkler systems, where as little as 50% of the water given can be accessed and used by the plants and other greenery in your yard.   Therefore, if you want a lush, green yard that benefits from your care without breaking the bank with a high water bill, drip irrigation is an ideal option. Can I Change the Setup of Drip Irrigation? It is also a good idea to remember that the design of your yard, the needs of your family and the landscaping that you choose may change in the next few years. Unfortunately, a standard sprinkler system is buried within the ground and changing the positioning of the pipes in the future is often both difficult and expensive. The good news is that the pipes associated with drip irrigation systems are not buried. Due to that fact, it is much easier to move it around as your needs change in the future. In addition, if you live in an area that is prone to droughts or water restrictions, being able to limit the water output in the future will be very helpful during those times. Can I Choose Which Plants I Want to Water, To Avoid Watering Weeds? If you are tired of pulling weeds, drip irrigation is a good choice. Although results will not be immediate and you will still have a few weeds that pop up, by only providing water to the plants and grass that you want, you can prevent some of the weeds from growing. In conclusion, choosing the right type of sprinkler system is crucial for a healthy yard with a lot of aesthetic appeal. When you want your yard to benefit as much as possible from the water it gets, while wasting very little, a drip irrigation system is a great choice. For more information, contact a local sprinkler provider, such as Spring Showers...

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