Tag Archives: maintenance

Selecting Window Treatments: Which One Fits Your Home Best?

 

Window treatments are often categorized into curtains, drapes, shades, and blinds. Depending on your intended purpose and design preferences, you will most likely be using two or more types of window treatments when you go from room to room. This makes the process of choosing the right window treatments seem a bit daunting. However, when you hit that right spot, even the most affordable curtains and drapes can match the effect of opulent, designer window treatments.

Here’s a quick guide on window treatments to help you choose.

 

Window Curtains

People usually think that curtains and drapes are the same thing, but industry experts often make a distinction between the two. Simply put, curtains are usually made of lightweight materials, as opposed to drapes, which are typically made with heavier fabrics. What’s more, curtains come in variety of lengths, from very short tiered curtains (or cafe curtains, which are often used in kitchens) to floor-grazing panels that give the illusion of height. Drapes, on the other hand, extend from the top of the window, sometimes even the ceiling, to the floor.

These two primary differences make curtains very versatile. You can practically use them in every room in your home—even the bathroom! Polyester and cotton work best for living rooms and bedrooms as these materials are easier to care for and can withstand more wear and tear compared to other fabrics. Linen and lace are more elegant choices, although depending on the construction, these curtains may need specific care. Meanwhile, cotton may be the best choice for kitchen and bathroom valances, as these are breathable and don’t trap odor.

Because they’re usually made of thin, sometimes sheer fabrics, curtains don’t block too much light, making them ideal for living rooms, breakfast nooks, and other areas in the home that see the most use during the daytime. However, it’s wrong to think that curtains can’t provide privacy just because they still allow light to stream in; it’s just a matter of choosing the right material. Thicker cotton, linen, or polyester curtains in solid colors or patterns work best in these cases.

 

Drapes

Apart from the above-mentioned differences, drapes are also different from curtains in that they are often lined with fabrics that can partially or completely block out all outside light. Thicker linings may even be able to block or muffle noise. This makes drapes ideal for the bedroom, as they not only provide privacy but also make the space more conducive to sleeping.

If you’re going for a luxurious, elegant look, drapes are also the perfect choice, with velvet and silk among the most preferred materials. Drapes are also typically manufactured in solid colors, but when manufacturers do use patterns, these are usually understated.

While curtains and drapes can be hung in similar ways (using grommets, rods, metal rings, fabric tabs, and more), the hardware used for drapes must be strong enough to support the weight of the fabric. Drapes also usually have pleated tops, which add to their more formal, classic appearance. The different types of pleats include the pinch (or French), finger, butterfly, bell, cartridge, inverted, and accordion pleats.

 

Shades

Similar to drapes and curtains, shades and blinds are sometimes referred to interchangeably, but the main difference is that shades don’t have the slats or louvers of blinds. Instead, they are made of a large, continuous piece of fabric that can be pulled up or down through a simple pulley mechanism. Shades are also made to fit within the window frame, unlike curtains or drapes that may hang well below bottom of your windows.

Depending on the style, window shades can also match your design preferences. They can be simple, utilitarian, casual, or even formal. Roller shades are among the most inexpensive and easiest to maintain of all window treatments. Depending on the material used, they can either reduce or completely block out glare, and they are also very easy to clean with even just a wet cloth.

Another popular style is the Roman shade, which pulls up into multiple folds. Again, depending on the materials used, they can also be used to block out the sun and other light sources. There are also pleated shades, which pull up into multiple, smaller pleats. Finally, there are also what are known as honeycomb or cellular shades. They are named after the honeycomb-patterned pockets between their front and back panels, which act as air traps that reduce heat loss in the winter, even as they cool down a room in the summer.

 

Blinds

Blinds are often made of plastic, vinyl, aluminum, or wooden slats or louvers, although more modern variants may even use leather or composite materials. The slats can be tilted open or close at different angles, depending on the amount of light you want to let in. Similar to shades, they are also made to fit within the window frame.

Style-wise, blinds are rather simple and rigid in appearance. However, this actually makes them easier to dress up using valances, sheer curtains, and other complementary design elements. They may come in various colors and tones as well. If you’re searching for a more sophisticated look, opting for wood or faux wood blinds may be the best choice. Faux wood, in particular, are easier to clean and can come in a wide range of tones, from dark red mahogany to a light pickled oak shade.

The most common style of blinds are those with horizontal louvers. However, for taller windows or patio doors, there are also vertical blinds available in the market. These are commonly made of vinyl, though you may also find vertical blinds made of heavy fabric.

 

When choosing your window treatments, knowing is just half the battle. With a wide variety of options available today, it’s best to visit a design shop or browse for designs online to find a style you truly want. You can even ask for fabric swatches and material samples so you can check if it matches your design plans. Coupled with your honest assessment on where and how you’re going to use your window treatments, you might be pleasantly surprised at how the finished product would look like!

 

Protecting Your Building from the Elements with Quality Materials

As a business owner, your productivity and profits are only as sound as the building in which you run your company. When the building is riddled with damages like a leaky roof, you risk your productivity as well as your revenue on repairs that could grow in price if they are not addressed quickly.

You cannot afford to put your cash flow at risk by allowing such damages to persist. By investing in professional repairs, high-quality siding, and EPDM Roofing Minneapolis business owners like you can get back to work and focus on bringing rather than spending your profits.

 

Avoiding Weather Damages

Even if the building that you run your company from is brand new, it can quickly and without warning succumb to the damages inflicted by the weather. Everything from heavy rain and snow to intense heat can cause your roof to warp, crack, tear, and crumble.

You can resist these damages by having the top of the building roofed with weatherproof materials, however. When you visit the website, you can find out what elemental damages that the materials can avoid once they are put on top of your building.

For example, Minnesota is known for its heavy snowfalls in the winter. The materials used by the company are designed to tolerate the heavy snowfall. It also resists the puddling of melted precipitation as the weather warms.

Likewise, ice and hail can cause cracks and tears to occur in cheaper materials. The company can offer you higher quality choices that resist tears on the surface of the building or cracks along the chimney or edges of the rooftop. You can operate your business all year long without the worry of what the weather is doing to your roof’s integrity.

As appealing as this all sounds, you may wonder if you can really afford it. You can protect your bottom line by choosing the company for its affordable roofing options. It offers this technology to you at prices that are designed to accommodate your budget and save your cash flow from being compromised or overspent.

As profitable as your business is, you always must be on the lookout for extra expenses related to the upkeep and repair of your building. Rather than spend thousands of dollars patching your roof each year, you can have it redone with high-quality materials that are designed to withstand the damages inflicted by the weather.

 

Fun Facts About Air Conditioning

While air conditioning is considered a saving grace in most parts of the world, most people don’t know the history of how it came about. In that spirit, here are some fun facts and interesting tidbits about that most cool of modern luxuries, the air conditioner.

The first public places to offer air conditioning were movie theaters. During the blazing hot summer months, the theaters would crank up the cool air in the hopes that people would flock to them and see the latest movies. This is where the tradition of “summer blockbuster: films comes from.

Without the invention of air conditioning, there would be certain medications unavailable today. Such medicines as antibiotics were generally only able to be studied under the cool temperature that air conditioning brought.

The amount of energy that Americans spend on air conditioning is enormous. In fact, the amount of energy that America uses to power every single air conditioner is equivalent to what Africa uses to power the entire country.

In the time before air conditioners were invented, people kept cool with giant blocks of ice. When air conditioners were invented, their output was measured by how many blocks of ice the machine’s cooling power was equivalent to.

The air conditioner was invented by a book publisher. Mr. Willis Carrier created the first one back in 1902 as a way to prevent his book paper from expanding and the ink from running.

It is a proven scientific fact that modern air conditioning has actually lowered the human body’s natural resistance to hot weather. This is why people should always maintain proper air conditioning service the woodlands tx.

The very first auto company to make air conditioning standard in their vehicles was the Packard company. Sales skyrocketed until the other companies took notice and joined in offering this particular amenity.

A primitive version of the air conditioner was invented in 180 AD. It was a 10-foot wide hand-cranked rotary fan that was actually capable of cooling an entire auditorium full of people. It could also be moved by pushing it along on its 7 wheels.

 

How to Check Your Toilet for a Broken Flapper

One of the most important parts of your toilet is the flapper. Also called a flapper valve, it looks like a small plastic piece attached to a metal chain. The chain part connects to the handle on the outside of the toilet that you use to flush it. When you press down on the handle, it forces the chain to rise, which opens the valve and allows water to go down the hole in the tank. The flapper will then drop back in place and form a seal to block any leaks from forming. If you think that your toilet has a broken flapper, you can identify the problem on your own.

Listen for Running Water

The first sign that your toilet has a broken flapper is water that constantly runs in the tank. Though you expect to hear the toilet running when you first flush, you also expect to hear that water stop running once the tank fills. If the flapper cannot form the tight seal needed, it will allow water to keep moving through the toilet. As your tank cannot completely fill with water, you’ll hear the sounds of running water all day and night.

Check the Tank

Most toilets have a tank with a lid on top that lifts off to let you access the inside. Find the chain attached to the flush handle, trace it down to the bottom and examine the flapper. Some older flappers used a type of flexible rubber material that molds to the shape of the toilet drain to form a tight seal, but newer flappers often use a type of harder plastic. Damage to the flapper such as cracks in the flapper itself, a broken chain or even mold can keep it from forming the seal that you need.

Hire a Plumber

While you can check plumbing Brandon FL stores for new flappers, you may want to call a local plumbing company and ask for help swapping out your flapper. You may find that stores do not offer the exact type of flapper that you need or that you aren’t sure how to affix the new chain to your old handle. There is a chance that you might have problems beyond needing a new flapper too. Plumbers can inspect the toilet and tell you exactly what repairs you need to stop leaks, running water and other problems.

 

Spruce Up Your Home for Spring

Spring is the perfect time to spruce up your home. There are several things around the house that need routine maintenance or an annual cleaning. The best part of doing these chores at this time of year is that you will have all of your summer to sit back and relax. The following are a few of the top things that need some attention.

Appliances

Cleaning and providing routine maintenance on your home appliances will keep them running efficiently and may even extend their life. Some of these you can do yourself. For example, you can empty the refrigerator and wash it thoroughly inside and out. Use a vacuum to remove dust from the coils. Other systems like your heating and air conditioning will require professional care. The HVAC companies Williamsburg VA has, such as Art Newsome, Inc., can provide routine maintenance and annual inspections.

Floors

Annually cleaning the floors in your home will allow them to look their very best, reduce allergens, and extend the floor’s life. Tile, hard wood, and laminate floors can be done by you. Sweep up all dust, dirt, and debris. Follow up with a thorough mopping. You could even use this time to wash all of the base boards as well. Leave the carpets to the professionals. They know how to remove stubborn stains and they have the proper equipment needed to steam clean any type of carpeting you may have.

Furniture

You may not think that furniture would need annual care, but to keep it looking wonderful, you do need to provide a little tender loving care. Vacuum all upholstered pieces. Remove cushions and vacuum under them too. Spot wash any areas that feel sticky or have obvious stains. Wood pieces can be wiped with a micro fiber cloth to remove dust. Specially designed polishes can be used to restore the natural shine, and products like Old English can be used to hide scratches.

Now that you have gone through your home and checked these tasks off of your to-do list, you can spend your summer enjoying yourself. Not only is it peace of mind to have these jobs behind you, but you will be ensuring that everything is running properly and looking its best.

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