It’s great that we continue to make our home more energy efficient but the more we do the bigger the need is to ventilate your home. There is a happy medium between ventilation and a draft tight home.
Tight homes trap moisture which is not a contaminate but if the humidity is too high (which can happen in tight homes in cold climates) it can lead to condensation which causes mold and fungi growth. VOC’s from building material also get trapped in the home when the home is unable to breath. The most common VOC’s comes from engineered wood products, oil base paints and synthetic carpets.
Plus the usual collection of dust mites, smoke from candles, cooking and shedding from the family pet. A drafty home is not the answer. The simplest ventilation system for a home maybe just upgrading your bathroom exhaust fan or as complicated as installing a multi room exhaust fan.
If you’re thinking of having a concrete driveway installed at your home here is a couple of things to consider.
I would have several inches of gravel poured on top of compacted soil. I would have rebar installed even if you are using a fiber type cement for additional strength. The pour should be 4 inches thick at 4,000 psi on the driveway and 6 inches thick on the apron of the driveway.
I would recommend that you purchase air entrained concrete if you live in a cold climate. Moisture that soaks into the capillaries of the concrete will have room to freeze and expand without doing damage to the concrete surface.
Trowel the concrete when it begins to firm up and use a cure and seal compound over the new concrete pour to allow it to properly cure.
Spray paint comes in many different types including a latex spray paint but one of the really unique ones is stone texture spray paint. This comes in several colors and looks like a decorative stone finish.
I have used this on many items over the years but the one I just completed really turned out great. I had some old large plastic gardening pots that looked like clay. I cleaned them up and used some stone texture spray paint on them. Wow!
They now look just like a stone container. It is easy to use; just clean the surface and position the can about 18” from the items and have at it. The texture paint comes out with more force than regular spray paint but that should not be an issue.
There has been considerable storm damage across the country and many people have lost pieces of vinyl siding. Siding can be reattached to the house with the right tools and if there is no damage to the siding itself.
If you can not find the piece of siding from your home or if it is damaged you will probably have to buy new siding. Make sure and get the same brand and color and this maybe very difficult. Vinyl siding, even though the color is baked through the siding it does fade fairly rapidly. The darker the siding color the better chance that the new siding will not match.
So search around for the old siding and ask your neighbors if they picked it up out of their yard.
Here is a quick home checklist before going on vacation.
Turn up your air conditioning temperature (summer) but don’t turn the air completely off! Without air, mold and mildew will grow.
Here is your at home tip for today. Summer storms can be violent and hurricanes along the coast can create a disaster, so be prepared. Always have extra bottled water in your home.
In hurricane prone areas you may want to fill the bathtub with water for cooking. Stock up on batteries, flashlights and fluorescent camping lights. Avoid propane lamps and candles as they can be a hazard. Have a charged cell phone and a charger for the phone that works in the car in the event of a power failure. It is always a good idea to have a few tools handy and some tarps and of course duct tape. Have a first aid kit stock and be ready to go.
There are many things to consider but these are just a few. Might even bring lawn furniture, bikes toys, grills and garbage cans to a sheltered area to avoid them from becoming airborne.
This is a perfect time of year to build a retaining wall for your home landscaping. The temperatures a bit lower and the soil for the most part are dry and stable unlike the normal spring. Retaining walls are built in the landscaping for a number of reasons but the most common reason is to have more flat usable land. The first part of the project will be to figure out the height of the wall and the length of the wall. Homeowners should build walls no higher than three feet in height unless it is engineered. We now know how many wall blocks we need for the project, so it is time to pick out the wall block material. There are different colors and textured surfaces of the block to enhance the look you want. First dig a trench about 12” deep and pour in 4 to 6” of washed gravel into the trench. The gravel will provide a stable base for the wall.
Once the gravel has filled the space use a tamper to compress the gravel. Set the blocks along this gravel shelve and make sure it is level. About 6” of the block will be underground, using a level make sure the side to side and the front to back be level. Now place the block next to the one that was just set and make sure it is level to the existing block. Fill the inside of the block with gravel to add stability and strength and use the tamper again. The second course of block should rest comfortably on top of the first course. Each block should be place half way over the seam of the bottom block and again filled with gravel. When the wall is high enough a cap will set on top of the wall. Proper drainage from behind the wall will occur through the many seams between the blocks. This project is not difficult to do but is labor intensive.