Posts Tagged ‘Central Carolina Whole House Program’

Small Bathroom Storage

Posted on: November 18th, 2017 by Derek Barmer No Comments

 

Your bathroom is one of the smallest rooms in the house, but—especially with a large family—is often used. If you have a small bathroom, how can you maximize your space to store more than you expected?

The inside of your cabinet doors is a great, unused space. Put in some racks to hold hair dryers and any products you want to be able to grab easily.

If you’re looking for new cabinets, look for those with plenty of storage.

If you have kids and need a step stool, get a storage step stool. This way you can store soap, bath toys or other items.

For the kids’ toys, use a storage basket that attaches to the sides of the tub. This can also hold other items as well. These are lightweight and easy to clean.

Use wall-mounted racks and shelves to add storage on empty walls. One great space is the area above the toilet. If you don’t mind reaching up high, put in as many shelves as you can up towards the ceiling, or get a tall shelf. This will maximize wall space.

Install hooks on the underside of your shelves to hang washcloths and towels.

Add a ledge-style shelf over the sink and underneath the mirror to give you a little extra space for makeup or small toiletries. This will also make them easy to access.

Use space outside of your bathroom if possible. You can store extra towels in the hall closet or add a small shelf just outside the door for a few more items.

If you’re looking for more space, but not necessarily more storage, consider a pedestal sink. These have a small base (think of a stem with a flower at the top.) They are great for half-baths. Get a trusted professional to install.

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Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24 hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!

 

 

Get Your Home Ready for Thanksgiving

Posted on: November 10th, 2017 by Derek Barmer No Comments

 

Getting your home ready for Thanksgiving—and all the holidays that follow—can be exciting, but also a huge chore. However, you don’t have to scrub your house from top to bottom. With a few tasks, you can get your house ready for all the people and of course, the food.

A week or so ahead of time, schedule your biannual HVAC inspection and cleaning to make sure it is in top shape before everyone arrives. The last thing you need is for your heating to go out.

The main area to focus your cleaning on is the kitchen. Wipe the counters, sweep the floor, empty the trash, and make sure all the dishes are clean and put away. If you don’t want to have a huge pile of dishes to do later, make sure to get some paper plates and disposable cups/silverware. Make your home smell like fall by boiling a few orange peels and cinnamon sticks and then letting it simmer.

Make space for extra tables and chairs if needed, and if there will be kids, make a space for them to eat and play as well. Cover the electrical outlets if there will be babies or toddlers.

Prepare as much food as you can ahead of time, especially if you’re the main cook.

Clear out a place for guests to hang coats and bags. If you don’t have a coat rack or enough room in the closet, make a bed in one room and designate that as the coat bed.

If you’ll have overnight guests, wash the towels and bed linens and make the beds.

Clean the bathroom that guests will use.

Vacuum in the areas where guests will be.

Lastly, put on some music and pour yourself a glass of wine!

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Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24 hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!

 

 

Winterize your Garage Items

Posted on: October 20th, 2017 by Derek Barmer No Comments

The items we store in our garages can last longer if we take some steps to store them properly as the weather cools down. Cold and wet garages are not great for your possessions. What are some simple steps to take to winterize the items in our garages?

  • Lubricate your garage door and put (or fix) weather stripping around it.
  • Stretch out your garden hose on a downward slope to drain out all of the water and then coil it up.
  • Clean and sterilize your rake and shovel to get rid of any diseased plant material. Take a bucket or other container and fill it with sand and mineral oil and then dunk any smaller tools into the mixture to prevent rust.
  • Make sure the gutters around your garage—and whole house—are clear to prevent them from leaking and caving in.
  • Clean the grass off of the undercarriage of your lawn mower and sharpen the blades. Also, run in until the gas tank is empty to prevent corrosion.
  • Put extra fuel into a steel jerrican with a flame arrestor and do not store it for more than a month. Gas with ethanol should be mixed with a stabilizer so it doesn’t deteriorate.
  • Clean or replace the air filter in your backpack leaf blower. Drain the fuel. Disconnect the battery cables and replace dirty spark plugs.
  • Get your snow blower ready by changing the dirty oil if you haven’t already. Replace shear pins. Also, check the shave plate for wear and tear.

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Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24 hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!

 

 

Major Plumbing Issues

Posted on: October 20th, 2017 by Derek Barmer No Comments

 

Plumbing issues left unfixed can lead to huge costs down the road. The problem is, most of us don’t even know when something is wrong—or don’t realize when something seemingly small is actually a big deal. Here are some big things to inspect whether you’re buying a new home or have lived in yours for years without thinking about these things.

A leak at the base of the toilet can go unnoticed or unaddressed for years. Over time, though, the water will get in between the floor and subfloor and rot the subfloor. Look for discoloration or warping around the toilet’s base. Also, check the flooring around the toilet by stepping around the area to see if it is soft or if it moves. Check to make sure the toilet bowl does not move or rock when grabbed. Movement means it has a bad seal or the flange is not secured or the toilet is not secured to the flange.

If your sewer line has clogged get a professional plumber to not only unclog it, but also inspect it. Over time the line can deteriorate, which not only means more clogs, but the line could also collapse completely. A major repair or even replacement would cost quite a bit.

Depending on water quality, maintenance and how your water heater is being used, this important piece of your home should last approximately 10 years. They are typically out of your sight, so take time to inspect it. If it leaks, will it damage flooring, closets or the garage? Water heater pans can help a little bit, but will overflow easily. A plumber can check whether or not it is up to code and working properly. The manufacturer can tell you the age of it from the model and serial number. You’ll also want to make sure your water heater is the right size for your house. You don’t want a small heater with a large family. You can also save money by replacing a large model with a smaller one once the kids have moved out.

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Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24 hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!

Mulching Your Leaves

Posted on: October 20th, 2017 by Derek Barmer No Comments

 

Once you’ve finished cleaning your gutters, next up is getting the leaves off of the lawn. Mulching is much easier than raking, and the organic matter breaks down and releases nutrients. It also keeps the leaves out of landfills. Mulch can also reduce development of some weeds, like dandelions. So if you want to try it this fall, how do you get started?

You can mulch with a regular lawn mower by taking off the grass catcher off your mower and setting the blade to its highest setting. It may take a few passes to get the job done. However, it is better to use a mulching mower or mulching blades. This is because they break down the leaves into smaller pieces with decompose faster, instead of sitting around on your lawn possibly blocking the sunlight and water and even getting sticky and moldy after rain.

A good rule of thumb is to not mulch constantly, but rather do it in between raking or leaf-blowing sessions. If the leaves are clumpy and not spread pretty evenly, or if there are simply too many leaves, it can kill the grass. If you do decide to do it more often, make sure to do it once a week or so—before the leaves become too much to handle. You cannot wait until the leaves are piling up five inches high—get to them sooner. You’ll also want to mulch when it has been dry.

If you’re using a regular mower and afterwards you cannot see any grass at all, reattach the bag to the mower and go through one more time. Add the mulched leaves from this round to gardens beds or a compost pile.

Microbes and worms recycle the carbon from the leaf bits, and microbes can do their job better with nitrogen. You can get lawn food to help break down the leaves even faster.

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Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24 hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!

Preventing Wood Rot

Posted on: October 5th, 2017 by Derek Barmer No Comments

 

Houses are made with a lot of wood—framing members, plywood, trim, etc. You can shell out plenty of money to fix wood rot if it is left untreated and it
can even bring on the termites—so how can you prevent it?

At least once a year inspect your home:

Look for cracks or holes in the caulking around windows, doors and dryer vents. Re-caulk any openings with acrylic latex exterior caulk.

Check under eaves, around fireplaces, and on interior ceilings for any possible leaks.

Look for sagging or leaking gutters and downspouts.

Trim back any shrubbery or tree branches closer than 2 to 3 feet from the sides and roof of your home.

Check for peeling and cracked painted surfaces and prime and paint if needed.

This fall, make sure your crawl space vents don’t get blocked with leaves and other debris.

Lastly, check for dirt and debris between decking boards. Clean them out and spray with a hose if needed.

If you think you have some wood rot, press on the wood surface and see if it feels soft or crumbly. Remember this can happen on the layers underneath—even if the surface isn’t so obvious. Some common spots include: where siding meets trim, where two pieces of trim meet, horizontal surfaces, deck support posts and fascia behind leaking gutters.

In the future, use decay-resistant or pressure-treated lumber for decks. Stain or paint all sides of each lumber piece before assembly. Do not lean anything against your siding. Make sure to clean your gutters this fall.

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Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24 hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!

Clean Your Gutters

Posted on: September 30th, 2017 by Derek Barmer No Comments

 

The leaves are already starting to fall, and before you know it, you’ll have a yard full of red, orange and brown foliage. While it may be pretty to see, it can also be a big hassle. How can you get your gutters ready for fall and make sure they stay in good shape?

Fall means lots of debris in your gutters. Removing the leaves and other debris from your gutters will ensure proper water drainage. This is an often overlooked task that can prevent serious damage to your roof and home.

Clean your gutters at least once a year to make sure water drains well and away from your home to prevent damage to your home.

You’ll need a sturdy extendable ladder—preferably one with ladder horns so it won’t damage the gutters. You will also need a small hand shovel or something to scoop out the debris. If you want to protect your lawn, put out a plastic tarp underneath where you’ll be dumping all of the gunk.

Make sure you not only clean out the clogged gutters, but also the downspouts. Make sure the downspouts are still connected well and pointed away from the house.

After digging everything out of the gutters, flush them out with a garden hose. Check to make sure your gutter system does not have any leaks.

If you want to help prevent gutter buildup in the future, install gutter covers. These are typically mesh screens or clip-on grates. They should also be inspected and cleaned at least once a year, although they will cut down quite a bit on the work you’ll have to do with your gutters each fall.

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Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24 hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!

Get Rid of Bathroom Mold & Mildew

Posted on: September 18th, 2017 by Derek Barmer No Comments

 

It’s the room where you get clean… but the bathroom itself is usually very dirty! With all of that water, come mold and mildew. Not only is it unsightly, but it an also be a hazard to your health and your home in large amounts. What are your choices if you don’t want to use harsh bleach? What other contributing bathroom issues do you need to look for?

Hot water with some soap and baking soda can remove mold and mildew. Mix one teaspoon of liquid soap with one cup of baking soda to make a paste, and add essential oils for a nice scent if you’d like. You can also mix a little bit of bleach in a spray bottle and use that as a finishing touch.

Vinegar is another item you probably already have in your home that is a great cleaning agent. Put white vinegar in a spray bottle and spray the area. Wait an hour, and then scrub. In addition, if you regularly spray vinegar on a surface prone to mold, it will help prevent it from growing.

Hydrogen peroxide in a dark spray bottle (to keep its effectiveness) can clean up mold and mildew. Simply spray it, leave for at least 20 minutes, and wipe clean. You can also add a bit of vinegar too.

While you’re cleaning up, take a look around your bathroom to see where mold and mildew might hide— like that cute whale faucet cover for your kids! Also, see if there are leaks that need to be addressed or if you’d benefit from adding an exhaust fan. Take steps to prevent major problems in the future.

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Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24 hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!

 

Home Preparation for Emergencies

Posted on: September 18th, 2017 by Derek Barmer No Comments

 

Hurricane season is in full swing and the time of year when most house fires happen is around the corner. If you haven’t already, now is a good time to go through your home safety checklist. Here are some things to check.

When we turn our clocks back we should change the batteries in our smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors. Set aside an hour to go through your whole house. Speaking of fire preparation, check to make sure you know where your fire extinguishers are and if an extinguisher has been used, you may need to replace it.  Also—go over your fire escape plan with your family.

Check to make sure you know where your first aid kits are—or make/buy some if you don’t have them. They should include bandages, gauze, tweezers, painkillers and anything else you might need if injured.

Other items to keep in a plastic box: duct tape, plastic sheeting, garbage bags, plastic ties, nonperishable food, water, a blanket and a wrench or pliers to turn off utilities.

Some alarms to consider installing: wireless water alarms under sinks or behind the fridge that will sound if there is a leak, and a sump pump alarm that can detect water levels rising quickly and warn you of a potential flood.

You can also get an automatic shutoff valve for your water heater in case it leaks.

Go over your emergency plan with your family. This will include things like where to meet in the house or out of the house.

Lastly, get your major home systems inspected twice a year to make sure they’re in top shape to prevent them from being the cause of your emergency. You can’t control the weather, but you can control what shape your house is in.

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Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24 hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!

Prevent a Failing Water Heater

Posted on: July 24th, 2017 by Derek Barmer No Comments

 

It is a crucial part of your home and often completely forgotten about until a major issue comes up—the water heater. The main cause of water heater failure is age. The seam on the back of most water heaters rusts and deterioration happened generally between about 9 and 11 years.

What does this lead to? Typically, flooding. However it isn’t always a sudden burst—sometimes it is a slow leak that might be easy to miss if you’re out of town, not home much, or simply don’t go in the area where you water heater is very often (such as a basement.) It is a good rule of thumb to get a new water heater every 9 years or so.

While repairs and installations are best left to a professional, there are some steps you can take to help out this important piece in your house:

Get your water heater’s shut-off valve and all piping inspected once a year. Signs of broken valves as well as wet or loose joints and rust will be some signs that more severe damage is likely to come.

Getting your water heater flushed to remove the sediment once a year will help as well. Water heaters can be flushed by attaching a garden hose to the valve at the base of the water heater. Turn off the power and run hot water until it cools before flushing the tank since the heated water may be 140 degrees or more!

If you live in an area with hard water, installing a water softener can also extend the life of your water heater.

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Have a concern with your electrical, plumbing or air conditioning? Central Carolina Air Conditioning, Plumbing and Electrical is here to help! We offer 24 hour emergency service 7 days a week!  Give us a call! 1-800-461-3010 to speak with our customer service agents that can answer your questions or schedule an appointment!