How Secure is Garage Door Automation?

Automatic garage doors are extremely convenient, they allow you to open and close your garage without leaving your car, which can prove useful in a certain, particular rainy, country…

The doors are operated by a portable remote and the operators should have inbuilt sensors which stop and reverse the door if an obstruction is detected. This ensures the doors are not only convenient but also safe & reliable.

Security Measures

Garage doors are typically manufactured from strong steel and if your door is automated, there are no handles to force or locks to pick for potential burglars. Your automated garage door can also be supplied with a manual release which allows the door to be operated manually in the event of an emergency or power failure.

Modern garage door operators use ‘rolling code” technology,’ like those used in car keys with remote unlocking. This means that a different code is created and transmitted each time the remote is used, making it very secure.

Potential Issues

The vast majority of customers will never have a problem with an automatic door opener throughout its lifespan. These incidents can usually be avoided by employing good common sense, but still serve as a reminder of what can happen on a particularly unlucky day…


* Check that the door’s emergency release is not obstructed. This can prove very dangerous if the remote has been misplaced and there is a fire.

* Contact your distributor if you think your remote has been lost or stolen to enable a new handset to be coded.

* If the door is opening and closing by itself, this may indicate that a button in the remote has become stuck and is constantly sending a signal to the door.


* Let children treat the remote and door as a toy. Although the buttons will appear fun to press to children, the weight of the door and the moving metal parts can make it dangerous if left unsupervised albeit with the inbuilt safety features on the operators.

* Leave your opener in your car, especially if it is unlocked in the driveway. It is common for a burglar to get a remote from a car and use it to break into the home.

* Don’t forget to lock the door joining the house and the garage.

Article kindly contributed by Garage Door Systems 

How to Install an Electric Fireplace Insert

Have you got a fireplace in your living room, but you dislike the time and hassle of burning wood? All that soot, ash and smoke – not only is it messy, but it also poses a potential health risk. Wood smoke carries particles and gases that can pose a serious health threat, especially to anyone with respiratory illnesses like allergies and asthma.

Many homeowners these days are discovering that electric fireplaces are a safe, clean and convenient alternative to wood fires. Modern electric fires use patented technology to create realistic flames, enhancing the ambiance of your living space while acting as a powerful supplemental heat source. With an electric fireplace, you can control the size of the flame and the heat output with a simple push of a button – no more constant fire tending and inconsistent performance. And electric fireplaces can even be cheaper to use (depending on local electricity rates) with no need to purchase wood to fuel your fire throughout the winter.

Electric fireplace inserts are designed to fit into an existing fireplace in your home. You can install one yourself, quickly and easily. Just follow these steps:

  1. Read the instruction manual that came with your product. Though most of the installations steps will be the same regardless of model, there might be particular specifications you need to familiarize yourself with.
  2. Close the chimney damper. This will prevent drafts and keep the heat from your electric fireplace from seeping outdoors. For extra protection, you can install fiber-free insulation around the interior of the firebox.
  3. Take out the grate and thoroughly clean the firebox. Get rid of all that soot and ash.
  4. Check to make sure that the nearest outlet matches the electrical requirements for your fireplace insert. Most commercial models require 120v/15 amps/60 Hz connections. You should plug your electric fireplace into a dedicated circuit, and if you have to use an extension cord make sure it has the proper rating.
  5. Unpack the fireplace and remove any packing materials from inside the unit.
  6. If the fireplace has a glass front, carefully slide it into place according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Make sure it is secure before proceeding.
  7. Insert the unit into the fireplace opening, tilting it slightly if necessary. It should rest evenly on the bottom of the firebox.
  8. Pull the cord under or around the insert and across the hearth, making sure it doesn’t get pinched or rub against any sharp edges that might damage it. Plug it in.

If you dislike the look of a cord across the hearth, a licensed electrician can either install an outlet inside your fireplace or hardwire the unit into your home electricity. Keep in mind that either option will permanently disable your fireplace for burning wood!

If you like the idea of an electric fireplace, but you don’t have a built-in fireplace in your home, then look for a self-contained unit that includes a decorative mantel and can be placed against any available wall. There are even media consoles available that allow you to enjoy your fireplace and television at the same time. Electric fireplaces are a great, economical way to add comfort and ambiance to your home.

Rae Eriksen is a writer who specializes in home improvement and energy efficiency for

Christmas Is Coming: Is Your Home Ready?

Before we know it, it’ll be time to deck the halls with boughs of holly and hang your stockings up on the fireplace. For many, Christmas day is a time to rest and relax with family and close friends, but the run up can be stressful if you haven’t figured out how long it’ll take to get your home ready. Christmas preparations often include more than putting up a few lights and a tree; if you’re entertaining at your home you’ll want it looking its best.

A glistening bathroom

When you’re using your bathroom each and every day, it’s easy to become immune to the sight of mould, cracks and grime. However, there are some things that even a deep clean won’t completely sort out, and mould is one of them. One of the easiest ways to brighten up your bathroom is to remove old sealant and replace it with new. Buy a silicone sealant that is waterproof, flexible and has anti-bacterial properties built in; it should maximise its life without you having to replace again next year.

Perfect plumbing

It’s all very well getting your bathroom to look good, but don’t forget to make sure that it works too! It’s likely that it’ll get used a bit more when you have guests, so unclog your drains and make sure you don’t flush anything that shouldn’t be down the toilet. Leaking taps will cost you more money in water bills so get these sorted as soon as you can. The last plumbing consideration is to make sure that your central heating system is working smoothly for the colder period.

Safety and security

When we have expensive Christmas presents all wrapped and ready to go in our homes, the last thing we want is someone compromising our home security. Take all of the usual precautions like leaving lights on and keeping presents out of sight from windows. You might also want to think about installing a security system or adding extra locks to doors and windows.

Outdoor decorations

It wouldn’t be Christmas without the outdoor decorations though! It might save a bit of time next year if you put up some clips or holders using weatherproof stainless steel screws; A2 grade should be sufficient but choose A4 grade if you live in an area of high pollution or near the coast. Hopefully this will result in less time up a ladder in the long run.

About the author: Paul Droylson is a DIY enthusiast based in the North West of the UK. He likes the DIY benefits associated with seasonal events, especially Christmas.

Design A Modern Outdoor Kitchen Space

Having an outdoor kitchen space is a wonderful luxury. A well-planned space can give you a relaxing place to spend time outdoors year-round. For a lover of modern design, outdoor kitchens are especially wonderful. This style makes it easy to incorporate kitchen features than make the most of your patio space.

Plan an Open Layout        

Unlike more traditional homes, modern homes often feature an open floor plan. While this can be great in any room of the home, it is especially beneficial to the kitchen. Breaking down room barriers in the kitchen space allows easy combining of a cooking, eating, and sitting area. When you are considering an outdoor space, which often means a patio, this is perfect.

Create a Kitchen Space and Seating Area

When designing an outdoor kitchen, it is important to remember that this is your patio, too. Think of the design as you would an indoor living space. A sitting and eating area near the cooking space always increases the space’s enjoyment. Outdoor couches allow you to relax outside anytime of the day – whether you are cooking or not. Building your stove and grill into a countertop that doubles as a kitchen island will give you the option to place barstools on the opposite side. These give you more seating and eating space.

Use Industrial Flooring

Popular modern flooring options range from wood planking laid in a contemporary style to the eco-friendly cork. While these are great, industrial floors are, perhaps, the most common floors to find. Concrete slabs or stark slate tiling is a beautiful material for your outdoor kitchen. The contrast it creates with the green space of your yard is strikingly beautiful. Additionally, it’s wonderful for the actual kitchen because it cleans easily, unlike a typical wooden patio that might stain from kitchen spills.

Include a Fireplace in the Seating Area

Fireplaces are common features in modern patios, and they are always included in unique ways. A fireplace is a great idea because it provides an additional cooking space – think cast iron or even s’mores – and it is an interesting focal point for a patio. Additionally, a fire allows you to enjoy the outdoor kitchen even in the colder months. Avoid the typical fireplace with chimney and instead choose an interesting fireplace that can be a centerpiece for your seating area. A fireplace in a large bowl or a fire build into your concrete will look attractive.


Terry Carter writes about landscaping and gardening for Grandview Landscape and Masonry

Make Your House A Home

Making a home seem well ‘homely’ is easier said than done. We all have our own ideas about exactly what makes us feel like we are at home, whether it is a collection of scatter cushions or that one chipped mug you can not live without. One way to make a home your own is to start putting your own stamp on it, from picture collages to creating the perfect garden, here are our top tips.

1. Get Framing
There is nothing better than looking at old photos and enjoying the memory of times past. Whether it is a night out or a special occasion, photos capture the times that we want to remember (and some we may want to forget!) Frame your favourite photos and place them around your home to instantly make it feel more homely. A creative photo collage is a great way of putting together all of your favourite pics, choose a quirky frame to really make a statement.

2. Get Colourful
Magnolia is out and bright, bold colours are definitely in! When it comes to decorating your home, make sure that you choose the colours that you want – not what you think you should have. Colour affects your mood therefore bright blues, yellows, purples or any other colour you can think of will make your home a nicer place for you to spend time in. Create different atmospheres with different colour schemes; do not be afraid to go a little wild!

3. Get Outside
If you have outdoor space take advantage of it and create a space that you will want to spend time in. Add colour with flowers and ensure that your garden is ready for socialising with lights and garden furniture. A shed is a great addition to a garden and adds extra storage space, simply find the right timber supplies and get planning!

Adding More Cupboard and Storage Space to New Homes [Guest Post]

One of the many things that only become apparent once you have moved into your new home and started unpacking is a lack of cupboards and other storage space. You may have made a mental note to look into adding some shelving there or some hooks here, but somewhere during the exciting and daunting moving process, that thought got cast to the back of your mind. Part of the fun of buying a house is of course the chance to revamp and redecorate however, which means that you can create more space in your home to keep things organised.

Before you get started, take a walk around your home and determine your current storage options as well as the overall space that you have to work with. If you have sufficient space, you could have built-in cupboards fitted or even invest in a free-standing cupboard or two. If you have a smaller space however, even a few extra shelves can make the world of difference.

Space Saving Solutions for Your New Home

Now that you have some idea of what storage options you wish to implement, you will need to get all the supplies you need together. Pre-made shelving and cupboards can be simpler to install, while those who relish the thought of a good DIY project can source wood to make unique items instead. Other things you will need include wood glue, hammer, nails, screwdriver, drill and brackets. Some space saving ideas that you could consider include the following:

  • Wall mounted shelves – these are ideal for smaller homes, and are great for living rooms, studies, children’s rooms, kitchens, bathrooms and even dining rooms. You can also add shelves at varying levels for visual impact, to store just about anything from books to glassware and everything in between. Brackets are essential, while durable, thick-cut wood is also vital to keep the shelf sturdy.
  • Wall cabinets – these can be purchased pre-made or even made especially for you according to your wall measurements. Many wall cabinets have space for televisions and sound systems, while others can function as mini-bars or display cases. Always make sure that you do careful measurements of the wall area before ordering any units – the last thing you want is a cabinet that is too big for the room.
  • Dual use storage – either look out for specially created items that offer storage and functionality, such as storage ottomans, coffee tables with hidden drawers or even drawers that can be fitted under beds, or make your own. Dining tables can be updated with discreet shelves or even wine racks, hooks can be added to kitchen cabinets for cups and pots, wooden sliding drawers can be kept under beds and unwanted bookshelves can be reborn as display cases.

The best part about moving into a brand new home is the possibilities that lie in wait. Creating the exact space you want may not happen overnight, but with enough creativity, vision and of course, good old fashioned elbow grease, you will be able to tailor your new home to your needs perfectly.


Author Bio

John Richson researches and writes about a variety of home and office repairs that can be done with the help of Silver Saints handyman services. When all else fails, let the premier handymen in London assist.

How to Update Your Kitchen with Furniture Fittings [Guest Post]

With so many great trends in kitchen design, you will be able to update an old kitchen simply even by changing a few simple fittings. The kitchen is quite possibly one of the most important rooms in your home. This is where delicious meals are prepared, coffee breaks are enjoyed, breakfasts are shared and new recipes are tried. The kitchen is often an integral family room, whether it is open-plan or separate to the dining room or living room.

Give your kitchen a fresh new look by updating old fittings for stylish new fittings, which could be chosen for a variety of styles from contemporary to rustic.

Essential Furniture Fittings for Modern Kitchens

From cabinets to doors; windows to hooks, fittings in a typical kitchen are often overlooked when the room is redesigned. Along with fresh paint and resurfacing, the right fittings can make a world of difference, and the best part is that they can be added with just the most basic of DIY skills. Here are some ideas for kitchen fittings to get you inspired.

  • Windows – depending on the size and type of windows in your kitchen, you could update the latches and fittings to blend in to the overall style of the room. You can also make kitchen windows more secure by adding window locks, adding more protection and peace of mind.
  • Doors – if your kitchen is separate, you can select handles or knobs in a variety of styles. Choose brass knobs for a rustic look, or gleaming chrome handles for a more modern kitchen. You will also need to consider exterior doors if you have one that leads to a patio or garden, in which case locks can also be updated.
  • Cabinets – choose something unique such as glass or crystal knobs for a glamorous kitchen cabinet, retro cup handles for something more understated, interesting curved handles for a modern look or even classic brass or period handles if you want to go for the rustic look.

While the choice of décor and themes is almost endless, it is important to follow the basic ‘rules’ of interior décor – the most important of which is consistency. If you have a rustic kitchen, modern fittings will look out of place. Retro fittings could be used in a more modern kitchen, but only if you are aiming for something bold and unusual. Once you have found the right fittings and added a few extra touches, you will be amazed at the difference in your kitchen.


Author Bio                                                                             

Rosanne Smith is an avid home decor enthusiast who researches and writes about the latest locks, window and ironmongery fittings for the home, along with many other furniture fittings.