4 Roofing Problems To Fix Right Away

The roof that is over your head is a fragile system, but also an important system to protect your family and allow you to live in your home comfortably. Since roofing systems are fragile, you will want to be sure that you are aware of any potential problems that you should fix right away. When you do this, you can ensure that your roof lasts longer and prevents you from having to spend a great deal of money on extensive repairs. Here are four roofing problems that you should fix right away:

  1. Growing Moss: Once you see that moss has grown on your roof, you will need to have it removed right away. This is because moss holds in moisture, which can cause rotting to the shingles on your roof. At some point, you will have to replace this section of the roof entirely if you continue to let the moss grow. In order to prevent moss from growing in the first place, you will want to trim trees to prevent areas of the roof from being too shaded and damp. You should also be sure that the gutters are cleaned regularly to prevent water build up on the roof. 
  2. Missing Shingles: Missing shingles should be replaced right away. If you let a missing shingle go without replacing it, you will end up with a larger problem. This is because just one missing shingle can cause damage to the rest of the shingles on the roof. This is because the area of the roof that is exposed is susceptible to water damage, which will spread under the rest of the shingles that surround it. Eventually, you may have to replace the shingles on your roof completely and treat the roof for water damage, as well. 
  3. ​Deteriorating Flashing: If you notice that the flashings that surround any sky roofs, the chimney, or other roof structures is starting to deteriorate, you need to have it replaced right away. This is because flashings that are not tight around these roof structures will allow water and other outdoor elements inside of the home causing water damage to the insulation, walls and ceiling of your home. 
  4. Building Up of Leaves: When you notice that a heavy amount of leaves are built up on the roof of your home, you will need to take immediate action. Not only should the leaves be swept away, but the tree that is causing the problem should either be removed or trimmed to prevent it from happening again. A heavy build up of leaves retains moisture on the roof, which causes rot and other structural damage. 

By knowing some roofing problems that you should fix right away, you can be sure that you know what to look for and when immediate action should be taken. Call a contractor like Ray’s Harford Home Improvement Contractors Inc to help you.

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Boring A Water Well With A Hand Auger: The Basics

Boring, or drilling, a well on your property can be a great way to avoid high water bills from your local municipal water system. In some cases, you might even be able to perform this task yourself, if you don’t mind expending a lot of elbow grease. One way to do this job inexpensively is with a tool called a hand auger. This article takes a closer look at the process. 

Location 

Boring a well with a hand auger only makes sense in certain situations. You probably won’t be able to drill a deep well by yourself with this method, so the location needs to have a water table that is reasonably close to the surface. Determining the depth of the water table can be done by consulting a database administered by the U.S Geological Survey on their website. 

In addition to the depth of the water table, other considerations come into play when choosing a site for your well. One of the most important rules of thumb is that the well should not be near any potential sources of contamination. This includes septic tanks, chemical tanks, areas frequented by livestock and streams or lakes that might flood the site. Contact your local health department for more specific information pertaining to the regulations for boring a well in your area. 

Also, try to choose a site upon the highest possible ground. Because groundwater flows downhill, this helps to minimize the chances of contamination. 

Soil 

The hand-auger method works best in softer soils, such as sandy and silt soils. It may also work well in some clay soils. It is not a good choice for rocky soils as the auger will not cut through stone. 

Technique 

A hand auger will need to be twisted into the soil. This involves turning the handle around and around as the auger bores deeper into the ground. You will typically need to add extensions to the auger shaft as the depth of the hole increases. 

An important point to remember is that the hand auger will trap soil as it bores into the ground. You need to lift up the auger occasionally to remove the displaced soil and then return the auger to the borehole. 

Although boring a well yourself is possible in some cases, many people will probably want to leave this type of labor intensive job to the experts. For more information about boring a water well on your property, contact a well contractor like one from Coonse Well Drilling & Pump Co Inc.

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Converting Your Bathroom To Accommodate An Elderly Family Member

If you are one of the ten million adults who are past the age of fifty who are providing care for elderly parents, you are probably managing it because you had mom and/or dad move in with you. Since old age presents a lot of challenges, and caring for someone twenty to thirty years beyond your own age presents some physical issues around the house, you may be looking at various modifications to your home that can help make daily cares easier. There are several bathroom accessories and modifications that can help.

Grab Bars on the Shower/Push Bars on the Tub

Contractors can install industrial strength grab bars in your shower and/or push bars on your tub. These will help mom or dad feel more safe as they reach for the bars to steady themselves getting in and out of the shower. The push bars on the edge of the tub will help your aging parents push themselves to a standing position so they can climb out of the tub.

Toilet “Lift and Lean” Bars

Elderly parents may encounter weakened states of consciousness, and when they are using the toilet, that can get quite dangerous. Contractors can install “lift and lean” bars, which are two square-ish bars that flank the toilet on both sides. The top bar on each of these is about elbow to shoulder height for most people, and it allows the person on the toilet to rest his or her arms on these bars. If the person on the toilet suddenly faints, becomes dizzy or feels weak, the bars keep the person from leaning and falling into the wall or countertop and getting hurt or stuck. The rest of the time, the “lift and lean” bars allow the elderly person to push off of the bars, thereby getting off the toilet and coming to a standing position independently.

Touchless Water Faucets

The elderly often have arthritis in their hands and wrists. This makes even small tasks like turning on water faucets difficult and painful. To make sure your mom and dad are able to wash their hands and care for themselves as much as possible in your home, a contractor can install touchless water faucets. A simple wave of the hand in front of the faucet provides temperature-controlled water, released without the use of faucets that need to be turned, pushed or twisted. They may also prove helpful to you when you need to provide hygiene cares to your elderly parents and cannot leave the water running or have time to turn it on and off when standing in front of the sink. For more information about renovating your bathroom, contact a business such as Central Plumbing Specialties.   

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Top Signs That Your Garage Door May Need A Professional Repair

As a homeowner with a garage, it is important to make sure that you are doing everything you can to keep the garage door in the best possible shape. To do that, you will want to make sure that you are taking a look at the following signs of garage door trouble. This way, you will be able to call in a skilled contractor as soon as possible.

Problematic Safety Sensor

It is important to make sure that the safety sensor on your garage door is always in good working order. To determine if it is working well, you will need to test it out. To do this, open the garage door and then place a few stuffed animals in a small pile on the ground right where the garage door should close. Once the stuffed animals are in place, you can hit the button to close the garage door. If the sensor is working properly, it should start to close but before touching the stuffed animals it should stop and then automatically go into reverse. The purpose of this sensor is to be able to keep your personal items, pets, and people safe from injury if they happen to get in the way of the garage door closing. If the garage door shuts on your stuffed animals, then you know that you need a professional to repair or replace the sensor.

Closes Unevenly

Do not make the mistake of assuming that it should be normal for your garage door to shut in an uneven manner because your home or garage door is older. It is important to make sure that your garage door is always shutting so that it is perfectly aligned with the ground. If you have suddenly found that the door is no longer even, you will want to call a professional garage repair technician. Your home may have settled, which might mean that the tracks need to be realigned to close the door evenly. Then again, the problem could be with the rails themselves, because something as simple as a bent rail can cause an issue with the closing of the door.

The Lock Is Sticking

If you are having the slightest trouble with your garage door lock, you will want to make sure that you are taking the time to have it repaired or replaced. After all, the last thing you want to experience is the door no longer opening because the lock is unable to be moved at all. Also, if the lock stops locking, you will have a security issue to worry about.

With those few things in mind, you should have a much easier time deciding whether to call in a professional to help with garage door repair

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Shotcreting Vs Fencing: Which One Offers The Best Falling Rock Protection?

When it comes to preventing boulders from coming crashing down the side of a cliff or sheer rock face, the two main schools of thought are prevention and reaction. Preventing pieces of rock from falling down in the first place is done by shotcreting, which is where a lattice of metal bars is placed over the rock face, which is then covered in a cement derivative to form a stable wall from which boulders won’t be tempted to fall. The reactionary camp relies on fencing or plastic netting to keep falling rocks from damaging property and harming people. Which school of thought you fall into depends on your unique situation, so here are some reasons for and against each system, as well as ideas for optimizing either choice functionally or aesthetically. 

Shotcreting

Shotcreting is often thought of as a long-term solution for sheer rock faces and cliffs because it is fairly labor-intensive and a bit more expensive than fencing, but is also extremely effective. The main issue with rock faces, and what causes them to lose boulders from time to time, is that their surfaces are uneven and unpredictable. The thinking behind shotcreting, then, is that the unpredictable rock surface is enclosed so as not to allow any shards of rock to get through the impermeable concrete facade. This protective layer is not only safe, but also very aesthetically pleasing, since the resulting concrete wall can be integrated into a number of different design schemes, including being able to cover the wall in plant matter or painting it green if the site is rural.  

Fencing/Netting

Using fencing and netting to catch falling pieces of rock comes with its inherent risks, like the risk of a rock breaking or bouncing past the net or fence. However, this risk can be offset by a number of factors and some good planning. Fencing and netting is far cheaper and quicker to install than shotcreting, so this option is best for a short-term project like so many commuters might see on either side of a highway surrounded by sheer rock face. Additionally, there are ways to design the fencing so that the possibility of a runaway rock is diminished, like putting the fence at the end of a long, shallow, sloped area at the bottom of the hill or cliff to allow the rock to lose some of its velocity before encountering the fence. 

For soil stabilization solutions, contact a company such as Geotech Solutions Inc.

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Three Tips When Buying A New Pool

If you want to install a pool on your property, it can be an exciting endeavor, but you will need to understand some guidelines to help you with it. There are a number of swimming pool builders that you can reach out to in order to get the help that you need for the purchase, design, and installation. With this in mind, read on to learn the important steps you’ll need to go through and understand in order to get the pool that you need. 

Tip #1: Select The Right Pool Shape For Your Home

One of the most basic, yet most important decisions you will have to make involves the shape of your pool. This will play a big difference from both an aesthetic and functionality standpoint. For example, a rectangular shaped pool is timeless and allows for more exercise opportunities since you can swim laps. You can also create a pool that will blend in with the shape of your landscape and allow for the creation of some unique decorations and additions, such as grottoes and waterfalls. By figuring this out on the front end, you will have more design capability and will have a better chance of finding a pool that fits your sensibilities.

Tip #2: Shop For The Best Cost For Your Swimming Pool Installation Budget

It is crucially important that you consider the overall cost of the pool that you are purchasing. In-ground pools tends to range greatly in price and can reach as high as $50,000 in expenditures when it’s all said and done. This is why it is crucial to shop around with a variety of manufacturers and contractors to get the best value for your budget.

Tip #3: Make Sure You Are Prepared For The Ongoing Maintenance

As you purchase your pool, you should consider the ongoing maintenance that will come with the territory. You need to purchase a kit that allows you to skim debris and check chlorine levels. You might do well to invest in a maintenance plan from your swimming pool contractor, to be sure that you are always getting the help and service that you need in that regard.

Follow these points and make sure that you do your homework when hiring your own swimming pool builder. This gives you the opportunity to put your best foot forward in creating the pool of your dreams for your property.  

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Is Your Home’s Water Causing Your Itchy Skin?

Itchy skin is anything but an enjoyable experience. An uncontrollable itch isn’t just uncomfortable, but scratching can cause your skin to scar. It can also introduce bacteria into the under layers of your skin, which can potentially cause a number of other concerns. In some instances, the water you use in your home is actually playing a part in your itchy skin.

Hard Water and Itchy Skin

Dry skin and itchy skin typically go hand in hand. Hard water is a major culprit for dry skin. Hard water is typically considered to have a higher alkaline, or pH, level than normal water. It is also defined as having excessive amounts of minerals like calcium ions and magnesium in it. The higher mineral levels contribute to your dry skin in two ways. First, the higher mineral levels strip much of the moisture naturally found in your skin, automatically making it dry and itchy.

Secondly, the minerals prevent the soaps you use on your skin and the detergents you use when washing your clothes from dissolving properly. In terms of soap, when you lather your body and rinse off, the soap doesn’t dissolve but instead ends up as residue on your skin that seeps into your pores, irritating the skin and causing itching. The undissolved detergent embeds itself within your clothes, which irritates your skin when you wear them and causes itching.

Resolving The Issue

If you’re dealing with any of these issues, it’s best to have the water in your home tested. If hard water is confirmed, consider having a water softener installed. Water softeners are small appliances that work similar to a filter in that they help extract some of the minerals from the water before you use it.

When the calcium ions and magnesium are extracted from the water, they are replaced with sodium in a process known as ion exchange, which helps make the water less harsh. Softeners can be installed in various sizes, based on your needs. Since the appliance connects directly to your water supply, it ensures all the water that flows throughout your home is softer and better for your skin.

If itchy skin is a problem you regularly deal with, it’s a good idea to have the water in your home tested. A water softener installation specialist, like those at Albert Soft Water, can help. One of these professionals can come out to your home, test your water and assist you with installing a water softener best suited to meet your home’s water usage needs.

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