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Category Archives: Home Improvement

Tips to Treat Bedbugs

Required Items

– Hot, soapy water
– Washer and dryer
– Insecticide approved for use on mattresses
– Heavy-duty black garbage bags
– Stiff-bristled scrub brush
– Vacuum with hose attachments


1. First of all, take all the infected material like pillows, bed linens, stuffed animals, clothing, or any other such material away and put them in a trash bag. Pour hot water into a washing machine and soak the infected material into the washer. Wash the material in hot water. Hot water is enough to kill the bedbugs, but still if you want to add any washing detergent, you can add it to washer. After washing the infected material, dry them on high heat.

2. You might have some fabrics items, which you cannot wash in the washer. Put them in trash bag and place the trash bag in direct sunlight or hot sunny place. If that is not possible then set the freezer temperature under -5 degrees Celsius and place the material in the freezer for at least five days.

3. The nest step is to deal with your room. You need to vacuum the mattress, box springs, chairs, corners and other cracks and holes with hose attachment. Vacuum will help you to loosen the bedbugs’ eggs. It is better to vacuum all the furniture present in the room to get rid off bedbugs. Remove all the drawers and other bed frames and vacuum them all and scrub them with hose attachment properly.

4. Bedbugs usually reside in the cracks and corners on the wall or in floor. So you need to be particular about these cracks and crevices. Properly vacuum the entire room with special focus on the corners, baseboards, cracks, and other such crevices which can be a home for bedbugs.

5. Take hot soapy water and clean the entire room as well the furniture with scrub brush. Do not let any thing untreated.

6. In the end, use insecticides to secure all the floors, walls, furniture and mattresses. Before using any insecticides read the instructions carefully to get the maximum results from it. .Removing bedbugs can be sometimes a lengthy process. You might to repeat the procedure for long time to completely get rid of them.


Tips to Cleaning Gutters

Cleaning gutters is important to prevent any leak. Certain tools and items are needed to clean the gutters with air. Following are given the list of tools and items required to clean gutter with air.

– Bucket
– Gloves
– Safety goggle
– Ladder
– Hardhat
– Garden hose
– Safety line
– Leaf blower


Some simple steps are given here to help the homeowners to clean their rain gutters with air.

1. Wear safety goggles, gloves and hardhat before starting your work.

2. Set up a ladder against the house reaching the top of the roof. You need a partner to hold the ladder firm while you work on the top. Ask your partner to wear hardhat, gloves and safety eyes goggles to prevent any injury.

3. You need a leaf blower. There are chances that it might slip from your hand, so to prevent it from falling down secure it with a ladder with a safety line. You also need a bucket secured to a ladder.

4. Now secure yourself with a safety harness to the chimney. Turn on the leaf blower while standing on the roof to blow the leaves, dirt and all sort of debris out of the gutter. After blowing, take the tiny leaves and dirt out with hand and put them in a bucket.

5. Take a garden hose and spray water into the gutter with some pressure to remove the rest of the dirt, leaves and other obstructive items. Make sure that the water is flowing through the gutter as well as downspout. If water is not flowing freely through downspout, clean them with drain snake. Again check the water flow.

Points to Remember

– Frequently clean the gutters in spring and fall season.
– You can install screen gutters to prevent the accumulation of leaves or other debris in the gutter.
– If air clean is not possible, use any other method to clean the gutters.


Tips to Installing a Shower

The first point to bear in mind is that a shower is made of several parts – the hot water supply system, the cubicle that you stand in, the door, the tray that collects the used water and sends it down the drain, the shower head that emits the water and directs if over your body, and such items as the shower rail, curtains and hooks.

First, let’s look at the hot water supply system of which there are three main types – electric showers, mixer showers, and power showers. Each type functions differently and has its own requirements for installation.

An electric shower is the simplest and most popular. It consists of a heater unit which draws cold water from your main supply, heats it up and passes it out through the shower head. Installing an electric shower is a simple procedure, you just need to install the shower unit in your bathroom, hook it up to your water supply and install the electrical wiring.

However, first you have to determine if your site fulfills all the requirements as regards the water and electricity supply. First, there’s the matter of water pressure. Electric showers require a minimum running pressure requirement of one bar and static pressure requirement of ten bars. They also need a flowing rate of water of eight litres per minute and to connect to the main water supply, a pipe diameter of 15mm width is required. You can select power ratings from 7-5 KW to 10.0 KW. The higher the rating, the higher the flow.

Mixer showers work by mixing existing hot and cold water in a special valve before it gets to the shower head. You can get these types for both high and low pressure water supplies, and they can be either surface or flush mounted. In the former, the piping is installed on top of your existing surface and in the latter, you can see the valve but the pipework is hidden.

With mixer showers, both hot and cold water should come from a supply of the same pressure. If this is not the case, then a pressure balanced mixer valve can be put in to achieve the desired state.

One downside to using mixer showers is that they draw water from the same pipes as other household appliances. This means that should you flush the toilet or turn on a tap, the flow of water to the shower will be affected. This is more likely if you have a low pressure water supply.

One danger resulting from this is that if cold water is drawn off elsewhere, the water flowing out of the shower could get excessively hot. There are two ways to solve this problem. The first is to create an independent water supply for your mixer shower, and the second is to use thermostatic mixer showers. These contain a pre-set thermostat that can sense a major change in temperature and work to correct it.

Power showers are mixer showers with built in pumps to boost the flow from the shower head. These are only suitable for low pressure, tank-fed shower systems. Some restrictions apply. For one thing you need a dedicated hot and cold supply. Also, the cold water tank should be at least 50 gallons if it supplies many outlets. If used only for the shower, then 25 gallon tank is possible.

Having decided on your type of shower, you now have to consider the rules and regulations governing the installation of bathroom fixtures, plumbing and electrical devices. These change from time to time so in order to choose your system and carry out your shower installation, you’ll need to hire a qualified tradesman who’s up to date with these matters.

Once you’ve decided on your shower system, you can choose the other items such as shower head, cubicle, door and tray to suit the size and ambience of your bathroom.

Following a shower installation, you’ll be able to have a fast and hygienic hot wash whenever you want and at the lowest costs. To find the best deals in showers, visit the web sites of online vendors to find the type and style to fit your bathroom. Then get ready for a comforting and relaxing hot shower anytime.


Guide to Fix Plastic Rain Gutters

Required Items

– Plastic gutter kit
– Fine-toothed
– Electric screwdriver
– Chalk line
– Tape measure
– 2 ladders
– Carpenter’s level
– Saw
– Pencil
– Wood screws


1. You first need to mark the important points to fix the gutter and its brackets. Place the carpenter’s level near the corner of the roof in such a way that it should extend about 6 inches over the edge. Take a gutter bracket and place it against the flat strip or fascia. The top of the bracket must touch the bottom of the level. Take a pencil and install the fixing holes of the bracket. Similarly mark the holes on the other corner of the roof section.

2. Draw a line joining the two marked points. The line should be straight. Now measure the length of the roof section and draw another line in such a way that lowers it by 1/6 inch after every 10 feet of length.

3. Install the corner pieces on each side of the roof section with the help of provided screws and brackets.

4. Support brackets would be installed after every 36 inches in the direction of the length of the roof section.

5. Take an appropriate measurement about the length of the section between the corner pieces. This length will help to cut the exact length of the gutter to be installed between the two sections. Generally, gutters come in standard size of 10 feet sections. So you might have to cut the corner pieces of gutter to adjust them into the sections.

6. Install the gutters in the brackets. Now is the time to attach the end caps. In plastic gutters mostly the end caps tuck into the place without any tool.

7. Now connect an elbow to the corner of the section. This will help to attach the downspout with it. Attach a small piece of downspout (about 2 feet in length) that will go under the eaves. Later measure the length from top to bottom to have a proper length downspout. Install a downspout of entire length. To give it a support install brackets evenly placed against the wall. Install another elbow on the bottom corner of the downspout.

8. With this elbow attach a piece of downspout of about 5 feet length. This will drain the water away from the foundation of your home.

9. For each length of the roof, repeat the same process to install the plastic gutter.


– You cannot install plastic gutter alone. You need a partner to help you. So arrange a partner for you before begin you work.


First Time Home Owner Tips on Home Improvement

1. Before you embark on any home improvement or renovation program, confirm all taxes are paid and all regulations complied with. Dereliction to do so is tempting trouble in the future.

2. You may require spending money to save money. Buying more effective electrical appliances and upgrading your heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems may cost you initially, but you will end up saving much more in the long term.

3. One of the least precious yet more effective ways to upgrade your home and elevate its appearance is by wallpapering. A modern coat of paint can also do wonders.

4. Laying new carpets can significantly improve the living place, as can appropriate practise of correct furniture.\

5. If you place a premium on privacy, soundproofing your rooms is a great way of achieving it. If you need to modify one of the rooms into a mini-theater, use of acoustic foam to upgrade its acoustics is recommended.

6. With global warming being on every ones lips, you can do your bit by using renewable power from the sun and wind. Installing solar panels and wind turbines can assist you accomplish that.

7. Home improvements can add notable value to your house should you wish to sell it later. Renovations to kitchens and bathrooms are especially recommended.

8. For home improvements outside the house, beautifying gardens, laying flagstone patios, repairing fences, etc. are recommended.

Remember that home improvement is not compulsory. If it had been so, it would have been called home repair. At the same time, home betterment is not something you can ignore if you desire to live in total comfort and perceive the value of your residence appreciate in big increments.


Backyard Fish Pond Design

The Location of the Fish Pond

When planning the backyard fish pond, it is important to choose the location of the fish pond carefully to get the most open space that you can in the backyard. Reducing the amount of room available to a small amount of space will dramatically decrease the homeowner’s enjoyment of the backyard.

Fish ponds that are placed near the home leave a great deal of open space further out in the yard where the person can hold a get-together or where children can play without the risk of falling into the pond. The types of plants that are chosen for placement near the pond can attract different types of birds, butterflies, and insects which can add some natural allure to the areas around the fish pond.

The Plants Around the Fish Pond

When planning backyard fish pond, the homeowner should choose the placement of the plants around the pond very carefully. The plants around the pond should be placed in areas that receive ample sunlight to allow the plants to grow properly. If the person would like to place plants in shaded areas near their backyard fish pond, they should make sure that the plants can flourish in areas that do not get direct sunlight or they will die very quickly.

There are many different types of plants that can be used around a backyard fish pond, but most people tend to choose ones that are easy to care for. By choosing plants that are easy to maintain, the person decreases the time that is needed for maintaining the area around the pond. People that choose a backyard fish pond design that has plants that are difficult to care for will quickly become irritated with the amount of care required and will eventually let the plants die.

Different types of plants have different needs and certain plants will not grow well when placed near other plants. When planning a backyard fish pond design, it is important to research the needs of each type of plant and make sure that they will survive in the area.


Purifying Water Tips

Many surveys show that tap water is most of the time not pure and unhygienic. Studies say that normal seeing water may contain toxin, poison or feces and if they are not removed from the water they would have an adverse effect on the health. Many skin diseases are caused due to the presence of contaminants in tap water. Purified water keeps you safe from these diseases. Water is necessary to provide a smooth transportation of nutrients into the cells and the contaminants are harmful as they make the fluid in the body thicker and the body needs more energy to deal with these impurities. More energy consumption on these impurities means less energy available to you. Removing these impurities ensures that the wasted energy is now available for you to do your task more efficiently and effectively.

Many companies are there to provide you with mineral water bottles, though this water is pure enough to drink, but it is not always possible to rely on bottled water as they are expensive and is not always possible to have them with you. There are other options available to make the available water pure for us.

The method given here is very handy for people to make the tap water pure enough to drink and for other usage. What you need to do is to arrange a large pan. The pan should be clean and free of any dirt. Open the tap and let the water flow for some time. After few minutes keep the pan under the water stream and fill the pan with two inches of water. Then place the pan on the burning stove. Heat the water until it starts to boil. Let it boil for one minute or so before removing it from the stove. After a minute or so, remove the pan from the stove and let the water cool down.

In a meanwhile, take a jug or any other container which tolerate the cold, it must be clean. Once the boiled water cool down, put that water into the container. Seal the container and place it in the freezer. Allow the container to remain in the freezer for a long time – long enough to chill. Remove the water from the freezer and you will have pure, clean and cold water.

There are many other ways to clean and purify the water, but this is the simplest and does not require any special chemicals or items to purify the water. You can do it with common household items.


Guide to Hanging Lamp Shade

First, determine how much brightness you need in the room. Some hanging lamp shades are made with double lining or thicker which tend to cover more light. These can be made from a variety of materials such as cloth, silk, wood or glass. Wood and glass are not as flexible in terms of dimming but you may ask manufacturers to add a second layer or two if you choose cloth. Glass may also be colored to have the right brightness and a style that matches.

Identify the best shape that provides the right luminescence to the area. Standard hanging lamp shades usually have a wider lower rim compared to the top so light spreads out evenly. If you intend to put some mood in the atmosphere, there are other shapes as well such as a wider top rim that tapers into a narrower bottom. A plug in hanging lamp can also come with a globular shape, square and other geometric figures. The shape is basically determined by the hanging lamp shade and light will be projected accordingly as well.

Maintain the Shade

A hanging lamp shade can accumulate more dust and is more prone to the elements compared to others located on top of desks and walls. You need to maintain it well by dusting regularly at least once or twice a week. If there are metal, wood or glass components in the model, polish or wax it thoroughly at least once a month.

Ensure that the shade is securely attached to the frame and that there are no signs of deterioration, molds or rust. Cloth, silk and other fabrics can be brushed or washed with soap and water. Others may require dry or steam cleaning to avoid damage.

When ordering a product, ask the manufacturer if they would consider selling you more than one hanging lamp shade. Having one or two extra pieces will prolong the lifespan of your piece. You can choose to replace the shade after several months or once a year. Since most models are limited and sold only over a period of time, finalize a shipping agreement with the distributor or manufacturer.


Tips to Exterminate Ants

Required Items

– Pen
– Five plastic containers
– Spray Bottle
– Sugar
– Measuring Cup
– Water
– Vinegar
– Paper Towels
– Note pad
– Borax
– Pot
– Spoon


1. The very first step is to note down the infected areas which are attacked by the ghost ants. Writing makes it easier to remember all the indoors and outdoors affected areas.

2. Make a spray of 1 cup of vinegar and 2 cups of water. Now pour the mixture into the spray bottle and shake well. Spray the mixture on the kitchen counters, stove, sink, and other effective areas.

3. Ghost ants are attracted towards the smell of sweets and proteins. This above spray helps to illuminate the smell. After the spray several papers should be used to clean and wipe the counter.

4. Homemade ant bait can also be made by 2 cup of sugar and 1 cup of water and 3 table spoons of borax. Pour all the three things into a bowl and bring to boil.

5. This mixture should be stirred from time to time. Once the mixture seems to be cooked, it should simmer for few minutes and wait to cool.

6. Pour this mixture into different bowls. Each bowl can be given 1 table spoon of mixture. Divide the mixture in to 5 bowls.

7. One can place 5 bowls of homemade bait in all the most effective areas where the ghost ants are found and seen. These open containers attract the ants and the bait is consumed by them, thus illuminating the queen ant along with others.

Points to Remember

– You can use more than 5 bowls or containers if needed. Place those containers containing the homemade bait at different areas of the home. Look for and mound and if you are able to found it, place one container near to it. This will speed up the extermination process.

– Borax is a harmful chemical. Keep it out of reach from children and pets. Also avoid any skin contact to borax. Any skin contact will lead to many skins reactions. In case you eat it, it will cause borax poisoning. Common symptoms are headache, vomiting, red eyes and nausea. Immediately contact your physician if any symptom appears.

Tips to Clean Wood Floors

Required Items

– Cider vinegar or white vinegar
– Water
– Broom or vacuum cleaner
– Soft, absorbent cloths or mops
– Natural soap (olive oil soap)


1. Regular cleaning and vacuuming is necessary to keep your wood floor clean. Place a door mat outside the door and ask people to come in after cleaning their shoes on a door mat. If possible ask them to come in bare footed and removing shoes at the door.

2. Any kind of liquid or water is not good for wood floor. So, take care not to spill any liquid or water on the wood floor to avoid damage to it. If you get any spills of liquid wipe it immediately with soft absorbent cloth or paper towel.

3. A mixture of natural soap (olive oil soap) and water is the best option to clean and wash the unfinished wood floor. Always use the soft cloth to wash or clean the wood floors. Avoid any sort of puddles on the floor surface. Cider vinegar and water solution is another good way to wash the unfinished wood floors.

4. In case you have a finish on your floor, inspect which type of finish has you. It can be wax finish or a varnished, lacquered or polyurethane finished floor. If a small drop of water results in a whitish spot on the floor that means you have a wax finish. Otherwise you can have any of the other floor finish.

5. Floor with wax finish can simply clean with clean water and soft cloth. You can also apply wax on the damaged tattered area.

6. For floors have finishes other than wax, you can use 1/4 cup of white vinegar mixed in a quart of water with soft cloth. Soak the cloth with the solution and squeeze it as much as you can. Use it on the floor to clean the surface. This solution can also be used on unfinished wood floors. But you need to dry it as soon as you finished cleaning.


– To avoid any scratches and damage to floor, do not drag furniture or other heavy items on the floor. You can use any cloths or towels wrap against each leg or corner to shift it from one area to another.