Casement Vs. Double-Hung Windows: Which Is Best?

The goal of your home’s windows is to allow light to flow naturally, be functional on a cool day, and provide something artistically pleasing to look at for you and your neighbors. However, figuring out what type of windows to install can be a challenge because there are different types available. Two of the most popular are casement and double-hung windows. In order to help you decide which is best, you must first understand what makes them unique.

Casement Windows

Casement windows are somewhat complex. Unlike double-hung windows, they use a crank to open the entire window, allowing air to flow continually. They offer some potent benefits including:

  • Modernization: Casement windows give your home a sleek and modern look. 
  • Better Protection: Casement windows are excellent at trapping air from the outside.
  • Easier to Operate: Thanks to its crank feature, the casement window is easier to fully open and close.

There are a few drawbacks to casement windows. First, they run the risk of maintenance issues. Handles and other moving parts can break and be costly to repair. Secondly, casement windows are not compatible with window air conditioning units. There are special casement window units available, but cost may be an issue depending on your budget.

Double-Hung Windows

Double-hung windows are a type of sash window. They have two panels that you can open from the top or the bottom. These windows are relatively popular among older homes and there charm includes great benefits, such as:

  • Energy Efficiency: Due to layers of weather stripping, recently manufactured double-hung windows can be very energy efficient, especially throughout the winter months.
  • Aesthetically Pleasing: Double-hung windows were designed for older homes. They give an irresistible charm and could add value.

However, there are major pitfalls to installing double-hung windows. Compared to casement windows, they restrict airflow because you cannot open the top and the bottom half at the same time. Casement windows are also easier to clean.

Making the Right Choice

The beauty of a double-hung or casement window is that you can base your decision on the age of your home. For example, the older the home, the less likely you would be to choose casement windows because double-hung preserve old world charm.

If you struggle with the decision, talk to a professional (such as Beyers Window & Door Inc). They should be able to evaluate your home and help you decide which window will be the better investment. The important thing is to make a smart and informed choice.


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2 Ways To Get The Vehicle Fleet You Need For Your Business

When your business starts to grow, it may be hard for you to make sure that your employees can get to where they are going when they need to get there, especially when your business does things like plumbing, painting, or any other kind of service. You want to not only make sure that your employees get where they are going, you also want to make sure that they have everything they need to get the job done. One way to do that is to make sure that you get a fleet of vehicles for your business. But how can you get that fleet? There are different ways that you can manage it. 


One thing that you can do is rent out a fleet. When you rent a fleet, it’s similar to leasing a car. However, instead of dealing with a car dealership, you are working with a fleet management company like Arnie Yusim Leasing Inc. The company owns the vehicles, but you are renting them so that you can use them. Because you are leasing out the vehicles, if something happens to them, you can contact the management company and have them fix it for you. They will also keep track of regular maintenance and things like that. 

You aren’t going to be stuck with a plain vehicle just because you are leasing it. You can have your company’s information put on the side. There are vehicle wraps that are removable that you can have customized for any vehicle you choose to use. 


You can also buy all the vehicles you need for your company. If you do that, you are the one who has to pay for all the maintenance and any repair bills. You may still be able to work with a fleet management company so that they can help you keep track of usage and maintenance of each vehicle, especially if you have a lot of vehicles in your fleet. 

Buying the vehicles for your fleet may be out of your budget when you are just starting your fleet. You can talk to the fleet management company you are working with to see if they have a rent-to-own program, so that you are able to eventually own the vehicles you are using.

Making sure that you have a fleet of vehicles for your company will ensure that your employees get to where they need to go. It can also work as passive marketing for your company.  

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2 Reasons To Consider A New Furnace

One of the most important components in your home is the furnace, mostly because this device is responsible for keeping you and your family warm and comfortable throughout the winter. Listed below are just two reasons to consider replacing your furnace with a newer model.


Another reason to buy a new furnace, particularly if you have just purchased an older home, is that older furnaces can begin to develop cracks in the heat exchanger within the furnace. The heat exchanger is the portion of the furnace that heats the air.

If this part of the furnace becomes cracked, it will begin to leak carbon monoxide into the home and affect your family’s health. For example, if you or a family member is experiencing disorientation, nausea, or severe headaches all the time, then that can be a sign of carbon monoxide building up in your home. Most furnaces will last between 20 and 30 years, but it is often a good idea to replace the furnace at about 15 years in order to avoid the potential danger that an old furnace can pose as it degrades. 


Finally, a new furnace is a great way to keep yourself and your family healthy because it can help to filter a lot of the dust and allergens out of the air. Older furnaces will often not be very efficient when filtering the air, with some models in older homes not having any filtration systems in place at all.

One of the signs to look for in order to determine if your furnace is unable to filter the air is if you or a family member has been coughing, sneezing, developing rashes, or experiencing allergic reactions more often. In addition, you may find that you and your family may be getting ill more often than is normal due to the poor air quality in your house.

In addition, signs of a furnace being inefficient at filtering the air can also include a home that always smells stuffy. In some cases, the poor air quality due to your furnace’s lack of an efficient filtration system can also affect your plants and cause them to wilt prematurely.

Contact a heating contractor like Kohl Heating & Air Conditioning in order to discuss whether it is time to replace your furnace and what type he or she would recommend for your home and individual needs. A new furnace is a great way to make your home safer and healthier for your family. 

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3 BIG Questions You Should Ask Yourself Before Having An In-Ground Swimming Pool Installed

Without a professional background in swimming pool installation or excavation, the idea of having an in-ground pool installed in your backyard may not sound like that big of a deal. Even though the best contractors will do their best to make sure the project goes as seamlessly as possible, installing an in-ground swimming pool could easily be one of the biggest property projects that you ever experience as a homeowner. There are three big questions that you need to know the answer to before you go out and find someone to install your pool. 

Do you know anything about the geological makeup of your planned pool spot?

Most homeowners know very little about the ground on which their home sits, but this is a useful thing to know if an excavator will essentially be cutting out a huge chunk of your property for a pool. The more dense and rocky or naturally water-rich your ground is, the more the swimming pool installation will cost because it will be a more time-consuming feat. Plus, lack of structural consistency in the ground could mean future problems with your pool. To find out more about your ground, you can have a contractor perform a soil test, which gives a good measure of information that will be helpful to know. 

Do you know where you are going to put all that dirt?

You may think you have a pretty good idea of how much dirt is going to come out of a spot where your pool will be, but most customers are actually extremely surprised to see just how much dirt and material there is to contend with after an excavator cuts out a spot for their pool. You have to remember, all that dirt is compacted tightly now, but once it is dug up, it falls to pieces, which usually means way more dirt than you are prepared to deal with. As the homeowner, it will be up to you to decide where you want this dirt to go. 

Are you prepared to have your landscape disrupted?

Installing an in-ground swimming pool requires a lot of tools, workers, and heavy machinery. You will be dealing with an excavator driving around the area and possibly even a crane to hoist parts into place. All of this work will mean some property and landscape disruption, so this is an aspect of the project that you must be prepared to deal with as the homeowner. While the project manager will do all they can to ensure things are put back like they were, you should expect everything to be a bit messy for a little while.  

For more information on excavation services, check out companies like Haas Construction.

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Fall Protection Equipment Safety Belts: 3 Areas Of The Buckle To Inspect

Having appropriate and proper fall protection equipment might be the difference between life and death. Safety belts are recommended for positioning and restraint systems. They are basically used to position workers in place to allow hands-free work or as a restraint to prevent workers from reaching an unprotected edge or any other type of fall hazard. Making sure that your safety belt is in good condition will help prevent any accidents or surprises from happening. In particular, you should inspect the buckle of the safety belt before every use. Here are 3 specific things to look for.

The Security of the Buckle’s Tongue

The buckle’s tongue should always be at the right position and overlap the buckle frame. The tongue is responsible for keeping the belt in place. If it is bent out of shape, you run the risk of the belt coming undone should an accident occur. If you want to take extra steps to make sure that your fall restraint and positioning system is fool-proof, choose double tongue buckles for extra support.

The Structure of the Frame

The tongue is not the only part of the buckle that is responsible for securing the belt in place. The frame of the buckle also plays a huge role in making sure that everything stays in place. If the buckle frame snaps, the entire belt would come undone and the buckle would not be able to support your weight. Although minor scratches and dents on the frame do not pose as a safety hazard, you definitely need to replace a frame that is bent out of shape.

You should also replace the frame if there are any large nicks or dents, as these areas will be under a tremendous amount of pressure in the fall restraint and positioning system. As a result, they are the most vulnerable areas and are at risk of snapping.

The Condition of the Roller

While working, you definitely want to make sure that the shape and position of the safety belt can adjust by itself to the environment. In short, the safety belt must be able to tolerate movement. The component responsible for this role is the roller. Before putting on the belt, inspect the roller to make sure that it can turn freely on the buckle frame.

Your safety belt might end up protecting you from severe injuries in the event of an accident. The most critical component of the safety belt is the buckle, so make sure that you inspect it carefully before you use it every time. If you are having any doubts regarding the condition of the buckle, just replace it with a new one from a company like Public Works Supply. Don’t take any chances.

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How To Have A Contemporary-Style Kitchen

There are many different trends for kitchens, including have a contemporary one. While renovating your kitchen, there are a variety of things you can add that will give you this style. Here are some ways to have a contemporary-style kitchen.

Use Natural Stone Countertops

One thing that many contemporary kitchens have in common is using natural stone for the countertops. One of the more popular materials is granite, which is moderately priced and provides a lot of great options. You can get granite countertops in a blue or green tint, natural and beige tint, or even a darker granite color. Granite works perfectly in a contemporary kitchen that is using a lot of neutral colors and clean lines, especially if you have stainless steel and chrome in the kitchen. Some other natural stone materials to consider include marble, travertine, and soapstone.

Add Stainless-Steel Appliances

Speaking of stainless steel, try to use it as much as possible in your contemporary-style kitchen. These appliances have a sleek look to them, which you definitely want in a contemporary or modern kitchen. Nearly every type of appliance comes in a stainless-steel option, such as refrigerators, stove and ovens, dishwashers, and microwaves. The great thing about this is since they are more modern and new appliances, many of them are energy-efficient and have advanced features you can’t get in older appliances. Stainless steel is also long-lasting and easy to keep clean, adding even more benefits. To avoid going too modern, add a white appliance here or there as well to get a good balance. So if you have a stainless steel refrigerator and stovetop, get a sleek, white dishwasher to balance out the kitchen.

Reduce the Clutter

A contemporary kitchen is both stylish and functional, but it is not filled with clutter. This is one of the things that can really take away from an authentic contemporary style. You want to have proper organizational methods in your kitchen that keep clutter to a minimum. Whether you install different types of shelving units in the cabinets for proper organization of spices and food items, to adding drawer sorters for your “junk”, it is important to keep all papers and random items off the countertops.

Add Some Color

Contemporary-style kitchens are similar to modern kitchens, but they have a little more color. You are not going for a chrome and white kitchen; you also want to add some personal touches. Don’t use too many colors, but choose a few colors you like and let them guide you toward your décor. These basic colors should be used for everything from your dishes and countertop appliances to the kitchen rugs and dish towels.

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How A Damaged Chimney Can Cause A Moisture Problem

Does the wallpaper near your fireplace continue to deteriorate no matter how often it is repaired? The problem might be due to there being an excessive amount of moisture in the chimney. Investing in getting your chimney inspected and repaired is the best solution. Find out in this article what can lead to a chimney having a lot of moisture and how it should be repaired.

1. There is Old Mortar Between the Bricks

If you have never invested in getting the mortar around your chimney bricks inspected, it might be wise to do it. Mortar is used to keep the bricks in place and can cause moisture problems when it becomes old because rainwater can sit in the joints when it rains. You might notice that some of the mortar is missing or discolored when it is old. A contractor can replace the mortar through a technique that is called tuckpointing. However, if the mortar damage is severe, and the mortar transforms into powder when it is scraped, you might need to get the chimney completely rebuilt.

2. The Crown is Damaged

When there is damage to the crown of your chimney, it can make it easy for rainwater to seep inside. The only way for you to find out if the crown is damage is by climbing on top of the roof because it is located on the exterior of your house, at the top of the chimney. It is in your best interest to get the crown inspected by a professional. He or she can determine if the crown should be repaired or replaced based on if there are cracks present and their size. Small cracks must be repaired in a timely manner because they allow rainwater to seep in, and they can get bigger with time.

3. Water Penetrates Through the Bricks

When the surface of bricks becomes damaged, spalling occurs and makes it easier for moisture to penetrate through them. The bricks can then begin to deteriorate and develop cracks. You might also notice that the bricks are crumbling. When spalling occurs on the exterior of the chimney, the bricks need to be replaced. Make sure the bricks are treated with a sealant after they are repaired if you want to prevent spalling in the future. Get your chimney inspected by a company like Clean Sweep as soon as you can so you can find out what kind of repair is needed to prevent the moisture problem.

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