preventing plumbing problems at home

Plumbing problems can cause havoc in your home. From minor issues like dripping taps to full flooding, when something goes wrong with your plumbing, it’s a pain to have to sort it out. Even small problems can get worse if you leave them, causing water damage or driving up your water bills. Although you can address problems when they arise, there are also steps that you can take to prevent some of the most common problems. Prevention can be the better way to approach plumbing issues, saving you plenty of time and money. Take a look at these ideas to prevent plumbing problems in your home.

Insulate Exposed Pipes

Pipes that are exposed to the elements could experience problems due to fluctuations in temperature. When it’s cold, old pipes could freeze over and might be at risk of bursting or breaking. Pipes in your attic or basement, as well as some exposed pipes outside, should be insulated to prevent them from getting too cold. You can easily do this yourself if you want to, as pipe insulation is available from any hardware store. It will help to protect your pipes and keep heat in so you save money on hot water too.

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Regularly Check Connections

Connections between pipes and various plumbed-in items around your home can be key areas where problems form. Loose connections and leaks can cause issues, so it’s smart to keep an eye on these areas. It’s a good idea to regularly inspect your home anyway, and even smarter to take a close look at any connections that could start to leak. Sometimes these problems can be very easily solved by tightening something up or using some sort of sealant to fill any gaps. It can help to prevent worse problems later, which might be more difficult to fix.

Keep Your Drains Clear

Blocked drains can cause many issues. Keeping them clear ensures everything is working as it should be. Drains can get blocked due to what you put down them, as well as problems outside your home. Make sure you keep food out as much as possible and avoid pouring oil down your drains. A professional RootX treatment will take care of roots from trees and plants trying to get into your pipes. This can prevent damage and avoid the need for putting new pipes in too, so you can save a lot of money.

Know Where Your Shutoff Valve Is

One of the most important things that you can know is where to find the main shutoff valve for the water supply in your home. This can help to prevent flooding and disaster if anything does go wrong. It’s also important if you want to attempt any basic plumbing tasks around your home, as you will often need to turn off the water first. You might be able to check your property inspection report to locate the valve.

Aim to prevent plumbing problems in your home and you can avoid all kinds of issues that could be expensive to fix.

** This was a contributed post.

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top tips for creating a comfortable, fun summer at home

Even if you manage to get away during the summer, you don’t usually spend the whole season away from home. That means that when you’re not visiting elsewhere, you need to make the most of the time you have in your own home. This year, like last year, many more of us may still be at home for the summer, with no chance to travel. But even if you can’t get away at all, you can still enjoy the warmer weather and everything that summer brings. Here’s how to make sure your summer at home is comfortable, fun, and memorable.

Keep It Cool

When it starts to get really hot, the last thing that you want is to be stuck at home with no way to keep cool. Before it gets too warm, servicing your air conditioning unit will ensure it’s good to go. But it’s also handy to have an emergency AC repair service on hand, just in case. A reliable service will be able to come out quickly and fix any issues so you don’t have to wait too long before your home is cool again. If you don’t have efficient AC or it needs a boost, you can use various techniques to keep cool, from the right sheets at night to fans to keep the air flowing.

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Make the Most of Your Space

Just because you’re at home, it doesn’t mean that you can’t have fun. There are plenty of things that you can do, especially when you make full use of all of the space that you have available. It’s worth thinking about how you might change things around for summer. When the temperature goes up, you don’t need blankets and throw pillows to snuggle into. You might remove rugs or other things that make your home look and feel warmer. Make full use of each room too, as well as your outdoor space.

Plan Some Local Trips

If you want to make sure you’re not stuck at home all the time, think about planning some local trips to go on. There could be a few different ways to explore the region around you, depending on where you are. A trip could mean going to the local park or checking out an outdoor space that allows you to get active. Or you might be thinking about some indoor activities, whether it’s shopping or visiting a museum.

Have a Vacation at Home

You might not be going away anywhere, but you can still have a vacation – or a staycation. Without leaving your home, you can recreate a vacation and have plenty of fun. It won’t be exactly the same, but you can still enjoy yourself, especially if you’re doing it as a family activity. You could go camping in the backyard, fire up the grill, travel the world by trying out new cuisines, or even have a full-on theme night where you pretend you’re on vacation.

Even if you’re at home for the whole summer, you can have an enjoyable time. By creating your own fun and making your home comfortable, you can have a memorable summer.

** This was a contributed post.

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let’s talk doors

Before.

The biggest question that I am aiming to answer here is whether or not you can install a 2”x4″ exterior door in a 2”x6″ wall? Also, what is the price difference?

When we purchased our acreage it was bank-owned. As far as we knew, it had sat vacant for many months before we ended up moving into it. To deter people from entering, the property manager had duct taped signs to both exterior doors. Have you ever tried removing duct tape from painted doors? It can’t be nicely done. Either the paint chips away, or the duct tape stays.

Fast-forward nearly two years, and we finally hired a contractor to replace our doors. What a process it was. Because I had never done this before, I thought that I would explain our process, and how we ended up saving a lot of money. If you are interested in replacing your doors but are worried about the price of doing so, it can be done for cheaper than you think (with a bit of research and determination)!

Originally, I had really wanted wood doors. My mother and step-father installed one at their acreage and it was just gorgeous. So about a year ago, I called around to many manufactures in Saskatoon and asked for quotes. What I was getting back was around $10,000 for two exterior wood doors plus install. These were their cheapest prices.

Because we renovating our entire home on essentially one income, I set a budget for $3000. This would have to include the price of doors and installation. So I scoured online for wood doors. After weeks, I came to the conclusion that if we wanted a wood look we were going to have to settle for woodgrain fibreglass doors.

Next, I went to Home Hardware and Home Depot and obtained quotes in person. Home Depot has a beautiful line by Masonite. I ended up with a quote of $2,219 for Craftsmen-style doors that were on sale. That seemed reasonable to me! I went to Home Hardware just to compare. Two of their doors was going to cost just over $3000. So at the time, I settled on Home Depot.

Then we had a small black window installed next to our side door. At the time, we now had mostly white windows, one white door, one red door, and one black window. All of those colours and different styles were putting my OCD into overdrive. I told Geoff that we had to choose one colour and stick with it. 

Because our style is more Scandinavian-farmhouse-modern, I knew that I wanted to keep with a black and white theme. So totally scrapping the wood door idea, we were now aiming for really modern black doors. Ones that would let in light, but also offer privacy. 

To make a long story short, we found exactly what we had in mind at Lowe’s. Made by JELD-WEN, each door was just over $400, totalling about $850. The only problem was they were 2”x4″ jambs rather than the 2”x6″ jambs that we needed. What’s the difference? Thousands of dollars. Because the 2”x4″ black doors were so common and in stock, they were such a good deal. To order the same or a similar door in a 2”x6″ construction, it would have been considered special order. Hence, the price went up to over $1000 per door. Inevitably, 2”x4″ doors are generally much cheaper than 2”x6″ doors.

Having our hearts set on the 2”x4″ doors by JELD-WEN, I sent our contractor a text and asked him if there was any way that we could purchase those doors. To my surprise, he said that we could! We just needed a door extension kit, which ran for about $75 each. Um, SOLD!! 

We ended up buying the doors, brick mould, and extension kits for less than $1000. So far, so good.

It took our contractor a few months to finally have a few days off in his schedule. Then, it took him a day and a half to install them. His final price for install was $1300. 

After.

I ended up selling our old doors for $300. In total, we spent around $2000 on our front and side door renovation. After all of the unknowing and change of minds, it ended up being way under budget. I am so happy about that, and so happy with the results! If you are wanting to save money, I highly suggest exploring all options, such as a smaller framed door. Also, don’t quit until you are happy with the price. It may take forever and a day, but you don’t need to spend a lot of money on exterior doors if you don’t want to.

We still need a new exterior light, doorbell, to paint the white brick mould black, and are planning a wraparound deck this summer. But for now, our acreage is slowly but surely coming together.

Emory

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6 budget-friendly renovation ideas to spruce up your home interior

Having a luxurious, sophisticated home can be challenging, especially if you have a limited budget. Luckily, there are budget-friendly ways to achieve a superb look and feel for your abode.

When planning for the redesign of your home interior, consider design secrets from experts that can make your residence look stunning without breaking the bank. From getting a fresh coat of interior decorative paint to installing the latest type of flooring and window treatments, these are some affordable solutions you should know and seriously consider.

1. Add pillows

Pillows serve two primary purposes – they can add elegance and a cozy feeling to a room and provide added comfort when you use your sofa, chair or bed.

When picking out pillows, consider ones in a bigger size so you can sit and rest on them whenever you want to. Also, lavish pillow inserts filled with down are considered the best options.

2. Use crown molding

Details matter in making your home appear custom-made and high-end, and crown molding can help you achieve it. It helps bring together the walls and ceilings to attain an elegant look. This finishing touch can make a room look finished and expensive.

Luckily, crown molding is affordable and available in different sizes. But for a greater impact, consider crown molding with wider trims. Install it on high baseboards, chair rails, ceiling medallions, columns, and ceiling beams.

3. Choose interior decorative finishes

Adding or changing the paint color can immediately make your home look refreshed and good as new. And for this task, it’s best to use decorative paint finishes.

Using decorative paints has become popular over the years because of the many benefits it provides. These include:

  • Low volatile organic chemical content
  • Ability to replicate the natural look of surfaces like stone, wood, and marble
  • Can add texture and dimension to a flat surface
  • May be used to fix wall irregularities like patching holes and levelling depressions

Compared to home wallpaper, decorative finishes don’t peel off. The surface is washable, and it doesn’t have any seam lines. More importantly, the walls can breathe, so moisture won’t get trapped beneath it.

Interior painting involves several important considerations, including selecting the most suitable type of finish and color for your home. If you find it hard to cherry-pick, reputable paint companies in Dubai and around the world can help you make the right color selection.

4. Light each room adequately

Lighting makes a huge difference to home interiors. It does not just brighten up a room but can also affect your emotions. It can make you feel productive and relaxed and even lift your spirits.

It is ideal for every room to have a mix of lighting fixtures: task, accent, and overhead lights.

For instance, consider using downlights to gently wash the curtains and walls with warm brightness in your living room. Use accent lights to highlight art and position table lamps close to seating to add another layer of lighting.

As for your kitchen, bright lights are highly recommended. Install recessed lights beside the edge of the ceiling and hang overhead pendant lights over your kitchen island. Place LED light strips on the bottom area of your upper cabinets to create a well-lit counter space for food preparation.

In your bedroom, use a bedside light with a movable shade and a dimmer. This offers more flexibility should you want to redirect the light elsewhere.

Make sure you consider the orientation of every room. Install more lighting fixtures if a room does not receive direct sunlight. But don’t overdo it because this can just be a waste of your time and money. To save energy, use LED bulbs.

5. Use the right window treatments

Window treatments add elegance to your property, on top of some much-needed privacy. For curtains or drapes, stick with elegant materials like cotton, linen, and silk.

But if you don’t want draperies, consider wooden blinds or woven bamboo shades. The goal here is to dress your windows because window treatments can make your home appear well-designed and elegant.

6. Accessorize

Most homeowners think that accessorizing their property is an expensive venture, but there are ways to do it while staying within your budget.

For instance, think gold! 

Featuring gold in your home interior helps create a feeling of elegance and richness. You can accessorize with gold mirrors, gold picture frames, or gold-legged tables. However, make sure not to put too much gold-toned materials in one place as you’ll run the risk of having a home interior that looks overdone.

Indeed, there are plenty of affordable and effective ways to elevate your home’s appeal and comfort.

So, if you’re planning to redo or refresh your home interior to make it look more elegant, cozy or welcoming (or all three), make sure you implement the above tips. 

Author Bio:

Ralph El Eid is the Business Development Manager at COLORTEK – Wall & Floor Fashion. EQUIPAINT is the franchise owner of COLORTEK in Dubai (U.A.E.) and Doha (Qatar); an international paints manufacturer specializing in the widest range of decorative paints and seamless concrete & resin flooring, with a unique showroom concept, and thus an ideal destination for homeowners, consultants, architects, interior designers and paint applicators.

acreage renovation: remy’s own room


A few weeks ago, I had mentioned that Remy and Wilder now have their own rooms.

Since January 2020, we have made the unfinished guest room into a finished guest room and now into Remy’s own room. These are the changes that we made in order to do so.

We removed the armoire, rugs, plant, and pictures from the wall. In the armoire’s place we put her tent and twinkle lights from Grandma. The throw pillows are from Amazon. (I still need to buy her an alphabet rug for the tent.)

In the previous plant’s corner now sits her desk which has a daily rotation of toys- from barns to Barbies.

I wanted the wall hangings to match and to be a lighter oak colour, so where did I go? To the dollar store, of course! I do need to broaden my search one of these days, but I just love a good deal! ;-)))

Remy has always had a high shelf near the door in her bedrooms. I am not sure why, but it has sort of become her “thing.” I have always put meaningful items on this shelf. This room was no different. The pictures are from last year’s trip to British Columbia, the dolls she had since she was a baby, and the “be you” sign was one that I bought a few ago. As always, we bought a pine shelf and brackets from Home Depot.

I also hung her little collection of shells from BC. She put her few Calico Critters inside and Ty Beanie Babies on top.

Honestly, that was pretty much it! We kept the antique bed and dresser in the room because she liked how big they were. We also switched out the rugs, bringing back the one that was originally in her bedroom. I don’t think that it really cost us anything to change it from a guest room to a little girl’s room. Remy is so much happier having a place of her own, and we are happy for her.

Emory

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