air conditioning

New Central Air Conditioning Units Can Save Energy

As many as eighty percent of the new homes being built in the U.S. are built with central air conditioning units installed. Central air just makes sense, as it keeps the indoor temperatures comfortable while filtering and dehumidifying the air. This is particularly nice for people who suffer from allergies or asthma. Fortunately, central airconditioning units can be installed in preexisting homes, too.

When shopping around for central air conditioning units, there are several things to consider. One is the size of the home you will be cooling. Air conditioning units come in different sizes, so it is important to choose the most efficient size for the cooling job you have in mind. If the unit is too large, it won’t dehumidify properly. To determine the right size, consult a contractor like the one here. They should have access to a calculation method called “Manual J” that can help you choose a size.

Another important consideration in central air conditioning units is a rating called the SEER rating. These letters stand for Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio. New air conditioners are required to have a rating of 13. A unit that was installed over twenty years ago probably has a rating of only 7 or 8. This is because technology has improved the energy efficiency.

air conditioning
A new central air conditioning unit can save you costs on your electric bill.

By replacing old inefficient air conditioners with new central air conditioning units, you can save a lot of money in cooling costs. It is estimated that increasing the SEER rating from 11.5 to 13 could save you over $500 each year in cooling costs. Also, look for “Scroll(tm) technology” when choosing a compressor for the latest in efficiency.

Another thing to look for in central air conditioning units is the “Energy Star.” This is a certification given to new appliances that use less energy than other new models. Of course, they use a lot less than equivalent units that are a number of years old.

When installing central air conditioning units, the location of the outdoor unit can make a big difference. If it is surrounded by vegetation or is under a deck, the air will not be able to flow freely in and out of it. Not only that, the units can be noisy. Don’t install it near an area where you like to enjoy eating or visiting outdoors, such as a patio or deck.


landscaping

Landscaping For Any Budget Or Any Home

Designing the intricacies of a home can sometimes, seem like a daunting and overwhelming task to accomplish. People become discouraged when they even think of renovating the landscape of their home, yet if you know the basics of what you’re doing, it isn’t that hard to accomplish. Take a look through this article and see what you can learn about landscaping your home. You may surprised at all the various things you can do when landscaping your yard.

landscaping
A landscaping design does not have to be complex to be satisfying.

If you are a beginner to landscaping, examine the older trees on your property to ensure they are safe and are not falling down. In order to protect your home or other items on your property, you may want to hire a professional tree limber that can ensure the safety of the property. There are many local arborists and tree removal professionals that can help with this task.

Use contrast to bring interest to your landscaping. Try to plant items that are very different from each other in color, form and texture. Look at a color wheel, select the colors that are opposite each other and then pair plantings of those colors together. This variety will give a better look to your landscape. Ask local nursery workers for advise on what to plant and even do a little research online.

To save money, you can buy items such as mulch or containers from a home-improvement warehouse. The quality of these items will not make much of a difference. However, you should go to a nursery to buy your plants and your other products such as pesticides instead of settling for low-quality products. And do not forget, it is nice to support your little mom and pop businesses.

When it comes to purchasing landscaping materials, do not always believe that cheaper is better. Yes, these materials will save you money, but most of the time, the quality of these materials is not very good. Ask the employees of the store you go to, which brands are the best. If you need a lot of material, look into smaller local companies that will sell to you in bulk and even deliver the product.

landscaping
Add beautifully colored flowers to enhance your landscaping design.

Trees

If you are landscaping your yard, you should consider your lawn’s appearance during various seasons. For example, if you only have leafy trees in your hard, but experience a long winter, your yard will look awfully bare. If you instead have a few conifers, you can have green year round, not to mention how nice they look with snow on them. Trees are the key component of any landscape design due to their dominance and the area they consume. Not to mention the effect they can have on the landscape and plants around them.

Use balance, not symmetry. A balanced distribution of plants creates a focal point, but the garden should never be symmetrical. For example, a large tree to the left of the garden can be balanced by two smaller trees to the right. This creates a much more desirable effect in the garden, whereas a symmetrical look appears completely unnatural.

Do not forget your hardscape when it comes to your landscaping plans. A deck or patio is an important aspect in your landscape’s appearance. There are many options for decks and patios that include rock designs or woods that coordinate with the colors of your trees, shrubs and flowers. Do not forget this important aspect. Hardscaping can really impact the look and feel you are going for with your design.

Purchase the largest tree that your budget allows. Even if you plan to live in your home for many years, remember that most trees grow very slowly. While you may only be able to afford a single tree, few landscaping elements make an impact as bold and attractive. Choose a tree that thrives in the native climate and soil type. Many companies will not only deliver the tree, but plant it for you as well.

landscaping
Trees are major components of a landscaping design.

Buy lumber for outdoor projects during the winter months. It is going to be cheaper than during the spring and summer months. You may also be able to find some really great deals on trees, soil, shrubs and other things by purchasing them off season while demand is low as well. Off season, especially right at the end of season, is simply the best time to find the best deals on landscaping products and plants.

As you can see, changing the landscape of your home shouldn’t have to seem like such a daunting task to accomplish. Anyone can make changes to their home, they just have to learn how. Apply the knowledge that you learned from this article and you should be happy with the change and experience of landscaping your home.


cabinet, cabinetry, painting cabinets, cabinet refinishing

Fix-up Your Home To Increase Its Value

 

Completing these home improvement projects take time, patience, and money. In this article we will share with you some of the best time and money-saving tips for completing your next home improvement project.

 

home improvement, cabinets
When done right, a remodeling project can add tremendous value to your home.

Fix the leaky faucet in your house. The water wasted from leaks can add up to hundreds of gallons annually, leading to a higher water bill for you and an needless waste of a natural resource. Repairing a leak can be as simple as replacing a washer, so there is no reason not to do this simple improvement for your house. Plus a leak can lead to mold and a ton of water damage that can be insanely expensive to rectify.

 

Affixing one of the pieces of hardware or fastenings you are storing to the lid of its container makes it easy to know what is inside. That’s right folks. To be successful at home improvement you have to be organized.Trying to locate one screw or bolt may be challenging, even if you are organized. Written labels will get clumped together.

 

Think about adding insulation to your home. You can install weather-stripping on each of your doors and windows. Your power bill will be more affordable as you weatherize your home. This will save a lot of money on energy costs over time.

 

Sealing up holes or cracks in your home can prevent unwanted bugs and reduce cooling and heating bills at the same time. Apply the caulk around windows, baseboards and doorways to seal any cracks. Caulking these areas helps to keep cool air and heat from escaping.

 

If your home improvement project involves moving appliances or other furniture within your house, be sure to put something down to protect your floors. Especially if you have hardwood flooring, taking out sizeable items can make a big mess and scuff up your flooring. Taking a few minutes to protect your floors can save you a lot of money in the long run. Don’t cause yourself more problems and expense with your project of at all possible.

 

Cabinets

 

Not all floors and walls are perfectly even. You may need to use shims when installing your lower level of cabinets to keep them in a straight line. Make sure to get these ahead of time in varying thickness’ so that you do not have to run out in the middle of install to get them. So basically, be prepared before you start you cabinet project or any home improvement project for that matter. There is nothing more frustrating than trips back and forth to the hardware store.

 

cabinet, cabinetry, painting cabinets, cabinet refinishing
Put down the paintbrush. Sometimes just simply replacing cabinet hardware will give you the desired result.

Begin your home improvement projects in the kitchen, where owners can see up to a 500% return on their investment. To give the room a fresh, clean look, paint the cabinets white and replace the hardware. Also target the counters; avoid tile and purchase granite or imitation stone. The kitchen is a great place to consider remodel option like countertop refinishing as opposed to replacement. You can also renovate existing tile and cabinets as well which can save you thousands of dollars, many hours, and a lot of headaches.

 

When it comes to replacement cabinets for your home, if you choose to replace the cabinets then look into solid wood cabinets. Wood cabinets will last for years, tolerating much wear and tear. Cabinets are normally made of maple, cherry and oak. Each of them accept wood stains, and for that reason it is quite simple to adjust their color.

 

Add a subtle fresh look to your kitchen or bathroom cabinets by exchanging old knobs, drawer pulls, handles and hinges with new, modern hardware. These modest changes can give your cabinetry a major face lift without the need to wield a paintbrush, and you could use the new hardware to accent the materials of other fixtures in the room, for instance faucets or appliances.

 

Another option is to hire a professional cabinet refinishing company. These companies can refinish your existing cabinets, saving tons of time, money, and hassle. Specialized Refinishing out of Raleigh, North Carolina estimates, “Customers can easily save thousands of dollars by choosing to refinish their cabinets as opposed to replacing them. We can finish most cabinet refinishing jobs in one day without any of the dust and headache involved with ripping out and replacing old cabinets.”

 

There are many home-improvement tasks that are easy to do, and can really improve the beauty of your home. Exchanging the old hardware on your kitchen cabinets with new updated hardware, is a relatively simple job and can give your cabinets a fresh new look. Taking on small home-improvement projects will help give you the self-assurance to take on more substantial projects in the future. Each little job will contribute to your overall knowledge of home repair. Before you know it you will be a home improvement guru. Do not forget to leverage professionals and online information for any problems you run into. Even the best home improvement guru has to call in a professional sometimes.

home improvement
Small projects will give you the confidence to tackle bigger jobs.

 

A remodeling project can add substantial value to your number one investment — your house. The work has to be done correctly though, or it’s not worth doing at all. In this article we have talked about some of the top money and time saving tips for carrying out your next home improvement project. Try these tips and you’re sure to see a savings when taking on your future remodeling project. Have fun remodeling and best of luck on your home improvement adventure.