Why Noisy Neighbours Are Not The Only Reason You Should Soundproof Your Windows

Don’t you just love the sound of squealing brakes, screaming babies and blaring music first thing in the morning? No? Not very idyllic, is it?

Unfortunately, with more people, high roads on our doorstep and an increase in the number of cars on the road, unwanted noises are making a greater appearance in our lives and homes. The issue of noise is no longer limited to inner-city areas – the rise in the development of suburban and residential regions means the ‘quiet life’ has become all but a dream for many of us. So what can we do to get some peace and quiet?

One solution comes in the form of noise reducing windows. The process is not as technical as it sounds – it simply involves upgrading your windows to keep 90-95% of unwanted nuisance sounds at bay. Oh, and don’t forget, they add an extra layer of security to your home and can even increase the value of your property!

The day to day sounds we encounter are not actually classed as noise, in fact for a sound to be considered noise it must be “loud, irritating and unwanted”. As you can imagine, the constant bombardment of noise can not only become very, very annoying but can truly begin to affect the quality of life.

Aircraft Noise

Aircraft can create some of the most disruptive and disturbing noises which is expected from engines that produce 100,000+ horse power! The noise produced from aircraft is a real concern, not only for comfort but also for health, as frequent exposure can begin to have a physical impact on the body. A study published by the British Medical Journal revealed that people who lived by airports were at a higher risk of developing health issues such as stroke and heart disease.

Many airports have reacted accordingly and now offer soundproofing grants for homes affected by aircraft noise pollution. So, if you happen to live nearby an airport and currently do not have sound proofing, be sure to contact the airport to see how your situation can be improved.

Road Traffic & Rail Noise

During the day, noise from vehicles and trains is not particularly bothersome. After all, these sounds are part and parcel of living in modern cities and towns. Living near a busy road or train station can be advantageous for many people, simply due to ease of travel. However, these types of noises become inconvenient during the night and evening, when the desired sound levels for comfort drops.

Although unassuming, noise from cars and trains can contribute to disturbing and disrupting sleep, which can take a toll on your physical and mental health. Many people have taken to sound reducing windows, to eliminate virtually all noise created from these sources during the night, helping them sleep soundly whilst continuing to reap the benefits of living in areas with great travel links.

 

Noise from Neighbours

Noise from next door is at an all-time high for many of us! This is especially true in cities and towns as we live in increasingly close quarters. When anti-social noise is mentioned, we often picture screaming kids, over-exuberant musicians or yappy dogs, however, poor soundproofing in your home can mean even low-level sounds seep through. Sound reducing windows will contribute to reducing irksome sounds from neighbours and busy residential roads.

Which sound reducing option is best for you?

Suppliers are able to reduce the level of noise by adding layering to the materials your windows are made of, improving their ability to absorb and reflect sound. Your supplier will evaluate your home and consult you on which option is aesthetically and functionally best for you. Soundproofing can be applied to many types of windows, including PVCu and wooden framed windows and rarely requires planning permission, so there’s little reason to worry whether your home is suitable.

Triple Glazing

Not heard of triple glazing before? You wouldn’t be the first. Triple glazing is the less popular alternative to double glazing and involves adding an extra pane of glass to your windows. Although there are many benefits to adding triple glazing to your home, such as improved heat insulation, if noise is your grievance, it may not be the best option for you. Adding an extra pane of glass does have some noise limiting qualities, however, the type of glass used is typically of the same density and thickness – which does little for sound reduction. That makes triple glazing a solution best suitable for low-level, anti-social noise.

Double Glazing 

Double glazing can work wonders for soundproofing your property – with its effects being most remarkable in houses with single pane or old windows. Typically installed on the outside of your home, units are specifically designed to combat noise, with the added benefit of improving energy efficiency and home security.

Double glazing’s soundproofing power comes from the space between the two panes of glass and the thickness of each sheet. These factors combined help to effectively dissipate and disperse sounds of certain frequencies, making it great for eliminating road and rail noise.

For extra sound reducing qualities, ask about laminated panes.

Secondary Glazing

Secondary glazing is an option you should consider if you are having issues with unwanted noise. Of the three options, secondary glazing is the most effective method for sound reduction, which could explain why it has been growing in popularity amongst home owners. Typically, units are installed internally within your existing window frame, which not only makes secondary glazing suitable for properties with traditional or listed features but also causes the gap between the two panes of glass to be far wider than double glazed windows. Secondary glazed windows are designed to keep 90% of unwanted external noise out of your home, making it an effective solution for homes affected by aircraft noise pollution.

To find solutions that best suit your needs, contact Bennbrook Windows, as one of the largest UK regional suppliers of windows, doors & conservatories, you can count on us for top quality products, speedy installation and excellent after care for long lasting and effective results. Call for a quote on 01992 574 555 or visit our website at http://bennbrookwindows.co.uk/ .

 

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Creative Ways to Use Ground Protection Mats

The purpose of a ground protection mat is to protect any ground surface from weight, pressure and damage from objects placed on it or traveling over it. While this is definitely a useful function, there are numerous ways you can employ these mats to save yourself time, money and the hassle of repairs in the event you need to store or transport heavy objects, vehicles or materials from one place to the next.

Portability

The key feature of the ground protection mat is its portability. Like a painter’s dropcloth, the mat can be placed anywhere you need to protect a surface. This means they can be used at any job site no matter where you happen to be working. Need a path for a truck, cart or dolly across a cement or wood floor? Mats can be placed one at a time or interlocked to form a path or an artificial surface for wide area coverage.

If you are transporting a refrigerator, for example, and using a hand-truck for support, you can arrange ground protection mats in a path from kitchen to vehicle. Not only will this make moving easier, it will literally smooth the path for your truck’s wheels.

Durability

A mat designed to protect your garage floor, office decoration or carpeting isn’t going to do a very good job for you if it isn’t durable. Ground protection mats are designed to support the weight of trucks and construction vehicles while at the same time protecting something as fragile as an anthropological dig site underneath. Indoors or at work sites, they are your portable floor that will prevent any weight or object placed on them from doing any damage to what is underneath.

Because of their durability, JWA ground protection mats can be used as a semi-permanent shield for your floor. Whether you have a concrete, wood or even carpeted surface, a mat will prevent heavy or unwieldy objects placed on those floors from causing tears, gouges, blemishes or other damage.

Technology

Pound for pound, the honeycomb is the strongest material structure on Earth. That’s one of the major reasons forward-thinking engineers chose it as the foundational technology for a premier-quality floor mat. Protecting a vulnerable surface isn’t simply a matter of preventing contact between heavy objects what is being shielded from their weight and movement. It is a matter of supporting and efficiently distributing weight and mass. Because of the honeycomb design built in to the ground protection mat, its ability to prevent concentration of weight in one location is competitive with any other similar technology.

Performing auto repairs has always been hazardous to your garage floor. Not so with a ground protection mat. Your engine, transmission and entire vehicle can be situated anywhere in your repair area and you will be safe in the knowledge they will neither stain nor damage your expensive concrete or vinyl surfaces.

The reusable nature of these mats alone should be enough for any project-minded homeowner or business owner to at least consider using them in any project where ground protection is a priority. Their customizable features make them versatile and economical as well.

How to Help Your Electrical Appliances Last Longer

Household electrical appliances are some of the most expensive items you will ever purchase. To ensure that your appliances lasts as long as it is required to, you have to take some preventative measures that will ensure you get the most out of them. The following are a few maintenance tips that will help your electrical appliances last longer.

Washing Machine

At all times ensure that the pockets of your clothes are empty to avoid objects such as coins that can damage the drum located in your washing machine. Even if the damage may not manifest itself quickly, a damaged drum can make your clothes wear out more quickly than usual. Never overload your washing machine as an attempt to avoid doing an extra load. Overloading it puts too much strain on your motor, which makes it wear out faster, thus reducing its lifespan.

Hoses that supply water to your washing machine are normally made of rubber, which with age begins to degrade. These pipes could lead to huge expenses and also cause inconveniences. This is why you need to ensure that they are replaced when they get old.

The Dryers

It is important to vacuum the inside of your dryer’s ventilation pipes regularly. You don’t want lint builds up and clogs both the hoses and filters. When they get clogged, they tend to take longer to dry your load, which in turn wears out the engine. Perfume a maintenance check up on the vent. The vent should stay closed until the dryer is turned on. Its main function is to expel moisture from the dryer. If it fails, you could lose hot or cold air depending on the season. This could render all your energy-saving efforts in vain.

The Refrigerators

Your fridge has a condenser coil that is usually located at the back. Over time, dust may build up on the coils, which impairs them and as a consequence reduces the ability of the fridge to work properly. This means that you need to have them cleaned on a regular basis. During the cleaning process, ensure that your refrigerator is disconnected from the power source. The outer side of the coils should also be vacuumed.

The Dishwasher

It might seem unnecessary to clean the dishwasher, but it is very vital. The sealing underneath your countertop, just at the top of the door gets gunky with time. If it is not cleaned, the door may fail to properly seal in water and heat, which could lead to leakage. It is also important to clean the arm of your dishwasher. This is because food particles could accumulate in the nozzles. If you find out that your dishes are not getting as clean as they used to, you need to clean out the tiny jets.

Ensuring a regular maintenance check-up of your electrical appliances will always be a point plus for you. Also, all appliances should be cleaned regularly. Taking preventative measures while operating your appliances will prolong their life and keep them in good conditions. If you’re in Australia you can consult Gordon Powers which has the best level 2 electricians Sydney has to offer to guide you on how to take care of your appliances.

Everything You Need To Know About Repointing Brickwork

When it comes to stone and brickwork, do not underestimate the power of pointing. This is mainly because the mortar can take about 15 percent of the total surface area of your walls. It also holds a huge impact on the quality of your building. The mortar also works against water ingress. The role it plays makes it a crucial aspect of home maintenance that should never be ignored. The following is information on everything you need to know about re-pointing brickwork.

Brick Pointing

Blocks, stones, and bricks are hardy materials that last for a very long time. However, during construction, the material that holds them together needs regular maintenance to keep them in the right condition. The mortar that holds the bricks together is called pointing. Repairing is called re-pointing and should be done regularly.

Testing its Resilience

The ideal method of testing the resilience of the pointing is to look at it. If it is even and flush to the bricks, it can be assumed to be okay. It is important for the pointing to be full since it is the only way water from outside could not access your home. You can also give it a finger test. What you need to do is try to dig it with your finger and see if any comes out. This should be done all round the house.

If the mortar comes out during the finger test, you should get ready for pointing repair. Damage to the mortar can be localized on places where there are leaks, but more often than not they can be suffering from age. Your mortar could also suffer from a previous pointing repair job.

The Ideal Type of Mortar

There is a huge range of colors and textures that can be formed when mixing mortar. A huge percentage of homes built during the 1800s and 1900s used lime mortar. Although it is frequently done, the use of cement during re-pointing tends to be a bad thing at times. This is mainly because they could decay earlier than lime-mixed ones, and also because there are numerous chances for damp to occur. Other than that, cement mortars are more brittle, harder, and less porous than lime. They also weather way slower than the bricks.

Cement mortars also tend to be affected by sulfate and salt, while those that contain lime, hydraulic and putty are not. Even though lime mortars are expensive than cement ones, in the long run, they tend to save you money. This is mainly because problems caused by wrong cement mixes can lead to huge losses.

Tools Needed During Pointing Repair

Just like in every job, using the appropriate tools is vital to getting the ultimate results. Tools needed for pointing installation or repair job include cement mixer, chisel, mortarboard, pointing trowel, soft and wire brush, scaffolding, lime sand, or white cement. Professional knowledge from PointBrick is also needed for the effective pointing job.

Mortar and bricks make sturdy foundations for many building. Sometimes, to prevent water damage from maiming the quality of the constructions, top-ups are required. To get the most out of pointing, it should be done when necessary and only professionally

Three Storage Secrets to Transform Your DIY

There’s nothing more frustrating than when tools go missing in between jobs. Sometimes they get borrowed without permission, but often it’s down to careless storage and not having dedicated storage places. DIY jobs go much more smoothly when what you need is right at your fingertips.

 

Keep Tools in Tip Top Condition

Anyone with a keen interest in DIY soon amasses an impressive collection of tools. Not just screwdrivers and hammers, but drills, routers, jigsaws and sanders, paint sprayers and air compressors or nail guns.

They all take up space, and if not stored correctly when not in use can quickly fall into disrepair and fail next time you try and use them. Damp conditions are a particular enemy.

Consider how often you need specific tools, and you’ll probably find you don’t need everything at home all the time. When you’ve invested considerable sums in good power tools, self storage is a viable option in between projects. They’re in convenient locations so it’s easy to fetch the tools you need for particular jobs, and return them (appropriately cleaned and prepared) to storage when the job’s done.

Security is a definite advantage. Garage and shed thefts are increasing in cities everywhere, and self storage provides all the lock-up security you’ll need to protect your investment.

 

Create a Bespoke Tool Storage Area

Storage areas inside the home are numerous, but we often don’t use them as efficiently as we could. Finding hidden areas of the home can unlock space for numerous DIY tools, but keep them out of sight at the same time.

Under the stairs is a prime storage area in many homes, and makes a convenient repository for larger tools you don’t want to risk to the shed. A few shelves and hanging hooks transforms a dumping ground into organised tool storage.

Another location is the space beneath kitchen cabinets. Many hand tools are long and flat, making them ideal candidates for this often overlooked home storage area. Take off the existing boards that block the area and put either sliding or hinged doors in their place, and you have long storage areas where a multitude of tools would fit.

Organise the Small Things

Keep tabs on fixings and other easily losable bits and bobs with these ingenious ideas:

  • Screw the lids of jars underneath shelves. In the jars, keep small fixings then, when you need them, simply unscrew the jar from where it hangs in plain sight under the shelf.
  • Cut a hole in the side of a plastic water bottle, and fit a hook or eyelet to the lid. Drop nuts, bolts or screws inside the bottle, and hang it on a hook fitted in a pegboard.
  • Fashion a drill block by drilling holes into a length of wood. Use it to hold drill bits of various sizes, keeping them handy and easily recognisable.
  • Customise narrow shelves in the workshop to hold screwdrivers, wrenches or other hand tools by simply drilling holes of appropriate sizes to drop them in when not in use.
  • Fix wooden pallets to the garage or shed wall to create somewhere to stand up tall garden tools like brushes or spades.
  • Use magnetic knife strips to hold smaller metal hand tools, saw blades or knives.
  • Fit bulldog clips to the wall for quickly hanging up gardening gloves or gauntlets.
  • Keep power cables tidy by looping them over lengths of plastic waste pipe fitted high up and perpendicular to the wall, or hang hooks you can use for the same purpose.

Organising storage for DIY tools can be both creative and satisfying, not to mention time saving when future projects go smoothly

 

Update your home with your heat source.

Designer radiators have a strong reputation for creating a sense of style within a home, whether that be in your lounge, bathroom or even in your hallway. Not only does a radiator become your source of heat, it provides the home with it’s own unique touch. When choosing a radiator, we all know that they will provide a sole purpose of warming up the home, but a designer radiator is much more than that – they reflect the interior design of the home by creating a style statement.

The style of radiator that you choose to have within your home interior will create a powerful appearance, with the unique design.

Mirrored Radiators

Combining your radiator with your full length mirror will maximise floor and wall space in a clever, unique way. The last thing that the majority of us do before leaving the house, is to check ourselves out in the mirror – why not do that with a warm, cosy atmosphere? This beautifully styled radiator brings a practical product your home, along with a modern interior input. Visitors in your home will notice this elegant focal point, it adds style to any room and will compliment any decor. These vogue vision radiators are built to last, giving your home a perfect long lasting feature.

Towel Radiators  

When updating a home with designer radiators, the bathroom is often overlooked, however, there is nothing worse than stepping out of a warm bath or shower into a freezing bathroom. With so many options on the market, what is stopping you from updating the bathroom interior? Towel radiators are a functional factor to incorporate into a bathroom, the ladder effect adds practicality with being able to hang towels to dry. We all love a warm fluffy towel to have waiting when we get out the shower.

Vogue Radiators

Vogue radiators are simply stunning and will add elegance to any home interior. The radiators are a traditional style, combined with a present day design to make them practical for all living spaces. Vogue radiators are considered to be a piece of art, due to the gorgeous layout, the designs are very unique whilst still being useful. The stylish designs are made from brass with stunning chrome finish on the framework. These radiators can be featured in any room, they add class and style to living areas and also update a bathroom to a sophisticated space, and they also double up as a towel hanging space.