Category: Home Improvement

Design and Maintain Your Own Stone Driveway

Design and Maintain Your Own Stone Driveway

Curb appeal is characterized by building an attractive exterior of a residential or commercial site. During the housing boom in the United States, prospective buyers sought curb appeal in properties as one of their top priorities. Aesthetics have long been associated with dream homes, regardless of economic crises. The front entrance of your home is the focal point of appeal, which entails a beautiful, well designed and maintained driveway. Many homeowners aspire towards having a front lawn that features a gravel driveway because of its beauty, durability and low maintenance. If you happen to be one of these homeowners, you might be interested in learning these great tips for installing and maintaining a beautiful stone driveway.

Before anything, it is important to know that a gravel driveway installation requires some foresight before the project is undertaken. The maintenance process, albeit, less hectic and takes smaller efforts than of other driveways, should not be underestimated. Stones can shift, loosen and be displaced from its fixed positions with time, which can result in ruts and potholes forming. If the gravel is not constructed and planned carefully, it can be a devastating experience.

Stone Driveway Installation

1. When you choose your driveway location, ensure there are no drainage issues in that area. If you position your driveway allowing water to run off the sides, you can prevent the water from pooling inside your gravel.

2. You can landscape your driveway either using boundaries of timber or brick. Mark off the area according to the width you want. If your driveway is curvy, a width of 14 feet will be feasible. Make sure the measurement takes in extra space for unforeseen conditions.

3. Lay down two to three layers of gravel (bear in mind each layer will be 4 to 6 inches thick). To improve stability, experts recommend using three separate layers that consist of different sizes of stone.

4. Order your gravel once you’ve explored rates with several companies. Choose the color, type, shape and size. You will also order/rent tools and machinery like shovel, metal rake, gardening gloves, wheelbarrow, and a mechanical compactor (this is used to compress the rocks and mud together).

5. Remove grass and topsoil from the area marked off. Dig out 4 to 6 inches of soil for each layer (you can use a tiller to loosen the soil to pull it out easily). Prepare the ground by leveling the surface in order to avoid leaving uneven ground spaces that can trap water.

6. Compact the soft ground using a mechanical compactor and lay down the weed barrier underneath the rocks.

7. Start layering and spreading the rocks by following precise instructions. You can have the center of your driveway slightly elevated so that the water slides down.

Stone Driveway Maintenance

1. Schedule routine debris removal tasks. The more frequently you clean up the driveway, including removing leaves, sticks etc the less difficult it will be to get everything out of the way. We recommend finding the most powerful pressure washer you can get your hands on to help make quick work of the weeds and make the stones shine.

2. If potholes appear in your gravel, get extra gravel to fill that part up without just shoveling some over from the other area. This becomes problematic and affects the entire driveway sooner than later.

3. Add a fresh layer of gravel to the surface every 1 or 2 years.

4. Maintain the borders of your gravel well, since foot traffic can kick away gravel frequently. Use an edging material for the borders to keep gravel in place.

5. Regularly apply a weed killer to the surface layer of the gravel.

6. Driving moderately on your driveway, a high speed can dislodge the gravel and eventually lead to thinning of the driveway areas.

Installing a Garage Heater In Your New Garage

Installing a Garage Heater In Your New Garage

People use their garages for a variety of reasons. Some use it as their car storage area and some use it as a storehouse. If your garage is a part of your home’s centralized heating system, then you need not worry. But if that’s not the case, then there is no need to panic. There are exclusive garage heaters available in the market that would do the heating job for space. If you have difficulty to install it yourself, there are always technicians to assist you.

Things to keep in mind:

It is very important to identify the type of heater you want to install in the garage. Most common ones are electric and gas heaters. Also be wary about the regulations associated with each for installation in your property. One more important thing to keep in mind is to calculate the total area of the garage. It helps you to identify the number of heaters required to cover the total space.

Electric heater installation:

Once you have the product ready for installation, the first thing you do is to turn off the power at the main breaker of the house. It is always good if there is a space in the panel to install a new breaker before moving forward. Next step is to expose the breaker and the wiring. You would be very lucky if the main breaker panel shares the wall with the garage area. With this kind of setup, you could easily drill the hole through the wall and install the conduit that you would run the new breaker through.

For wiring, you could use a 10 gauge wiring in red, black and green colors. If you are using a 220V circuit, the red and black ones would be the alternating phase hot wires and the green one would be the ground. Next, connect the wires to a 30 amp breaker as it is sufficient if you are using a 5000W heater. The green ground wire would get attached to the ground bar in the panel while the red and black wires would be attached to the two terminal screws on the breaker. Snap the breaker into its place and try to keep the wires tucked up on the sides. Now turn on the main power for the house, but make sure the power is still off in the newly installed breaker.

It is always a good practice to install the heater in a place which is not only out of the way but also accessible. One good approach could be to put it as close to the garage door without hitting it. Once you have all the conduits in place, run the wiring inside. You could use a fish tape to slide it down from the ceiling into a lower junction box if there is one. Once there is enough wiring exposed out of the junction box, just cut off the excess.

Next step is to take off the plate to expose the wiring for the heater and then install the adjustable heater arm before hanging it on to the bracket. To run the power from the junction box in the ceiling to the heater itself, you could use an appliance kit. You just run the wiring inside it; they have fitting at the ends that could easily get connected to the junction box. To connect it to the heater, pop out one of the tabs in the back and run the wiring through to connect it. Before you turn on the heater, it is a good practice to connect the wires in the junction box with wire nuts. You are now all set to experience the warmth of the heater in the garage area.

The electric heating systems are cheaper than their gas counterparts and are user-friendly when it comes to the installation. With a little bit of research you can find the best garage heater for your home. Nonetheless, once the installation is done, get it inspected and enjoy the warm air, especially during cold winters.

Choosing Your Home’s Siding Can Be Much Easier

Choosing Your Home’s Siding Can Be Much Easier

Choosing your home’s siding can be a lot easier if you have made some simple choices, and you will find out that you can pick something that will work with the house if you have planned out what you want to do. You just have to be sure that you have found out what you will do to be sure that you can get something that actually looks good on the house and gives you hope that you can work something out. You will pick the color that you want, or you can pick something that is very easy to paint.

There are many people who will be very interested in the ways that they can make these changes, and they will find out that they can make some changes that would be easier to complete. You can make sure that you are going to make the house look much better, and then you will figure out what you can do that will be the best thing for you and the people in it. You can make the house change character completely, and you can make the house look so different that you never want to leave.

You also have to see what you will do to be sure that you have chosen the things that will stand up to the weather in your area. That means that you can get a few things to hang up on the house that you will notice always work, and you start feeling like you can make a change that will be easier for you to use. If you have some choices that you like, you can turn the house into something that will be much more exciting. You can actually get the house to look perfect, and you can match up with the trim and other things that you already have.

The best part of this is that you can be sure that you have a few things that are easier to handle. You can get something that is going to work out for you with no problem, and you also have to be sure that you will ask the people who sell it to you how they can install it. If you have never actually thought this out before, you can make some really easy choices that you will be proud of. You can look through the catalog, and you can work out what will make more sense.

There are a lot of people who have had major problems with these things in the past, and they have to see what might be done to get the house to look great because you can choose any color of material for your siding.
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Kitchen Remodeling Ideas

Kitchen Remodeling Ideas

Perhaps, it is the time of the year that you’re planning to remodel your kitchen. But, you have no idea as to how things should be done. There are many ways for you to be inspired if you are looking for a design and style for your future kitchen set up. You can also seek a designer’s consultation to make sure that you get the thing correctly just the way you wanted it.

Another fun the fact that you can be inspired by a design and style for a kitchen is to visit kitchen showrooms and list down all the necessary items that you need. This is an excellent way to you know the type of design that you’d like to have in your home. Everything may look perfect, but you need to keep in mind that you have a budget to maintain. To make sure that you get the right design, space and style, here are the following tips and ideas for kitchen remodeling.

1. Get a professional advice- as mentioned; you need an expert opinion on that matter. You don’t have to approach things in a rush which is why before you’re going to visit a showroom make sure that you have talked to a PRO kitchen designer.

2. It is worth the splurge- whether you’re on a tight budget or not you need to think about what items you should be spending and what materials for kitchen remodeling should you be looking for. Does it suit your taste or would you instead downgrade it to a more cost-effective type of materials? There are so many things that you need to consider and the fact that knowing whats worth the splurge is often difficult to decide.

3. Designer’s recommendation- even if you’re remodeling, creating a comfortable and a good looking kitchen is important. Consider installation tips for countertops, lighting, and cabinets. The most convenient way to accumulate money is to keep your present layout of the kitchen and take down walls if necessary, ensure the plumbing connections and electrical wiring as well. Make sure that everything still fits within your budget range.

4. Saving your cabinets- if the materials of your cabinets are still in good shape, there are ways for it to be recycled. All you need is to have experts that can rebuild cabinets and make it unique again.

5. Utilize every corner of the kitchen especially when it comes to cabinets- this is why designers come in handy regarding upgrading kitchen spaces. Through their expertise, you will be able to utilize the functionality of a new kitchen.

6. Double sliding and pulling out shelves- take advantage of anything that can be slid or pulled out shelves. You will see so much space can be occupied without worrying how to organize your kitchen tools and utensils.

Now that you have an idea regarding upgrading your kitchen, it is best that you take down the necessary items that you need to remain and decide which ones should you take out.