Choosing a shading solution for your conservatory is a key decision that will enhance the comfort, usability and beauty of your space. While conservatory blinds are the traditional choice, conservatory sails are a cutting-edge alternative that offers so much more. But what are the differences between the two choices?
As a cornerstone of security, convenience and beauty of your home, garage doors need a little TLC to keep them performing well and looking great. Regular maintenance and servicing is the key to restoring the quality of your garage door and avoiding any problems down the line. This article was written by Doormatic Garage Doors, experts in both installing new doors and providing garage door maintenance services across London, Surrey, Kent and the South East of England.
Is garage door servicing worth it?
The sure answer is, yes! Looking after a valuable element of your property will always be advantageous for its longevity, quality and performance. The benefits of garage and maintenance include:
Ensuring that simple and regular maintenance tasks are carried out on your door a few times a year is much cheaper than needing to replace an entire garage door, should faults be neglected. A bi-annual servicing by a professional is recommended, along with regular visual checks performed by you, the owner, on a regular basis.
Enhances the Safety of Your Family and Vehicle
Garage doors are heavy machines with lots of mechanical components keeping them operational. Should a door malfunction at the wrong moment, it has the potential to injure nearby people and animals, as well as your vehicle. Regular maintenance and checks can reduce the likelihood of malfunctions occurring.
Protects the Security of Your Property
A main function of garage doors is to act as a strong, reliable barrier between the contents of your garage and potential thieves. That’s why you should try not to allow weak spots and potential entry points to go unnoticed, and make sure you catch problems early to avoid break-in risks.
Avoids DIY and Amateur Mistakes
There is no harm in performing occasional visual checks of your garage door to try and spot issues, but correction of real issues should always be undertaken by a professional – even the most technically-adept DIY enthusiast may worsen the problem, or risk injury to themselves, in an attempt to fix the door.
Warning signs you garage door may need servicing
Is your garage door making a bizarre sound? Perhaps it is a little stiffer, looser or slower than normal? While these signs could see minor, they should never be ignored as they may be signs of garage door deterioration or damage, which could eventually transform into an unsafe situation. Surefire signs that you may need the assistance of a garage door specialist include:
- Unusual noises
- Door closes too quickly or too slowly
- Door will not close completely
- Door will not stay open
- The outside has cracks or gaps in door
Contact a reliable local company who can inform you of what’s involved in a garage door service, and how they can help diagnose, maintain and repair your garage door.
When you are decorating your living space, you might tend to forget about soundproofing it. However, there are a lot of creative ways in which you can efficiently use home decor to soundproof your home. Your home is the place you are entitled to feel peaceful and the unnecessary noise does not have to get in the way.
Be it a creeping sound or the disturbing sound from the outdoors, noise certainly makes us feel tenser than we realise. A quiet home is welcoming and you can make it soundproof using some amazing and creative home decor ideas. Here are some cheap ideas for home decor that you can use to soundproof your home.
Add rugs to touch floors
Sound bounces off any hard surface that it can find and this might contribute to noise. Wooden floors, as well as open spaces, are the areas wherein sound can reverberate and echo. To reduce the sound, all that you have to do is to add some good quality rugs to the wooden floor.
You can also go for carpets, but the beauty of installing rugs is that they are less permanent and you can change them with time. Thus, they are also more cost effective and also helps you to get the job done. You can add rugs to your floor for using as sound absorbers. Any type of sound will not be reflected resulting in noise reduction.
Invest in quality curtains
Quality curtains not only help you in adding to the aesthetic appeal of your abode but also act as good sound absorbers. Curtains that are made with a thick material such as velvet, wool or a tightly woven fabric act as a good sound absorber.
They absorb the sound from outside and also reduce the extra sound that comes from outside. To make it even more effective, you can hang the curtains high and let them drop on the floor. Curtains made with thick materials are way more efficient.
Showcase your book collection
Did you know that adding more furniture does wonders when it comes to soundproofing? That’s tight! You can add a book collection in your apartment or house to soundproof your space. Not only does it absorb sound but it also gives your living space a gorgeous look.
You can very well utilise all the extra space that is there between the floor and ceiling using a book collection. You can also choose to put decorative wall art as an alternative and it will work similarly.
Opt for furnishings that are soft
If you are going to buy new furniture, then you can go for furnishings that are soft. You can switch to soft furniture wherever you can. However, you cannot get rid of your old stuff, but you can definitely modify them and augment them with furnishings that are soft.
Since noise reverberates off the hard surfaces, you should consider soft furnishings that will immensely reduce the noise. For instance, if you are going to buy furniture, then you can opt for an upholstered bench instead of going for a hard coffee table.
Buy a rug pad
While thick rugs work just fine, when you add a rug pad underneath it, it works even better. Buy a thick rug pad that you can use under the rug and see the difference for yourself. It will also help when you have to move your furniture around.
If you do not wish to go for rug pads then you can opt for multiple rugs that you can pile up on each other to achieve your desired style. For instance, you can layer a geometric weave rug on a sisal area rug to make it look stunning and act as a soundproof.
Use as many pillows as you can
This is yet another simple tip that will tremendously help you in reducing the noise while increasing the style quotient of your space. You can invest in pillows that can be used in your living room as well as the bedroom. Use as many pillows as you can to absorb the noise.
The material of the pillow is also an important factor to consider and you should opt for pillows that are fluffier and bigger than normal ones. They will be optimum for reducing the noise. Pillows also add a fresh look to your decor and you can add in some decorative covers for them in order to make them look great.
You can effectively reduce the noise by using soundproofing paint in your apartment or house. If you are going to repaint your house soon enough then go for the paint that is specially designed to soundproof your place.
This type of paint might be a little costly but it will be worth investing in the long term. With soundproofing paint in place, you will not have to worry much about the sound reverberating as it will be absorbed by the walls.
You can also opt for soundproofing wallpapers that you can specifically put in the rooms of your apartment which require it the most. The soundproof wallpapers are designed to absorb all the noise and so it is a great way of soundproofing your space.
However, check with your budget before you invest in soundproofing wallpapers as you might want to go for other viable options if you are staying in a rented apartment. But in case you are staying in an apartment that is your own, then you go for long-term solutions like this.
Thus, with the help of the tips mentioned above, you can soundproof your apartment. These creative ideas for home decor can prove really beneficial and you can see the results for yourself. While implementing the options, you should carefully take your budget into consideration.
The decor you choose also depends on whether you own the apartment or are staying in a rented space. This is because you cannot make significant changes to the apartment if it is a rented one. So, you can evaluate your options and then choose the soundproofing decor you want to go for.
If you’re looking to sell your home while the market is still relatively buoyant, but you’ve been disappointed by recent valuations from estate agents, you needn’t despair. With these five cheap ways to increase the value of your home, you could command a figure more in-line with your expectations.
Everyone wants to get the best price for their home, but it is important to be realistic. There are very few things you can do to add tens of thousands of pounds on to the value without spending large sums, but take a look at our simple tips to spruce up your home and maximise what you get for it.
Paint your kitchen
Unless you have an unusually large kitchen, you shouldn’t need too much paint to give things a freshening up. You don’t need to paint the whole room either, simply choose to paint the cabinets or the walls a different colour, whichever needs brightening more.
Kitchens are one of the key rooms people are interested in, so keeping it fresh and inviting will help to boost how much value estate agents place on it. The less work potential buyers would have to do, the better.
Buff the bath
If you love a good bath, then you’ll understand the importance of buffing up your bathtub. Over the years they can become worn and grimey, but by giving it a good scrub, your tub could be made to look new. If a deep clean doesn’t work, you might consider investing in a new, cheap tub to give it the look and feel of a new suite.
Bathrooms, much like kitchens, are an area of the home people place a lot of value in, so presenting a clean and sharp bathtub will be a good investment.
Carrying on from the last point, with the knowledge that a bathroom is a prized part of any home, investing in new caulking is a wise move. Over the years you might have accumulated mould on your caulk or it may have become worn and discoloured. Applying a new layer of caulk after stripping out the old one is a simple task which quickly brightens up a bathroom once again.
Whether it’s around the shower tray, the bath or both, caulking won’t break the bank and will have an instant impact.
Declutter your home
Think back to when you viewed your property when buying – you were probably trying to imagine where furniture might go and what you would use certain rooms for. That logic applies when selling your home, since you want prospective buyers to see the potential it has and pay more to get it.
Declutter your home by getting rid of items you don’t need and tidying away those you don’t regularly use – rent space in a storage facility as an interim option if you have to, the cost will hopefully be surpassed by the extra amount added to the value of your property when it’s tidy and open.
Clean the carpets
We become so familiar with our homes that we sometimes fail to see the impact that time has on things. A carpet will be stepped, shuffled and possibly stamped on every day, so it stands to reason that they’ll become a little dirty and jaded looking.
With a professional clean, your carpets can be brought back to life and this will up the potential value of the home as they won’t look like they need replacing. You can hire a company to clean the carpet or simply hire the machinery and do it yourself.
Once your property is sold and you need help moving, look no further than clockwork Removals. With experienced removals teams, they can help you wherever you are in the UK and can even take care of international removals, helping your move go as smoothly as possible.
There’s no getting around it – Christmas equals clutter. And while it’s gratifying to treat your family during the festive season, decoration overkill coupled with a fresh haul from Santa’s sleigh could leave your house swamped with too many unnecessary bits and pieces from both the coming Yuletide, and ones that have gone by.
A simple answer is to clear away the old to make way for the new. This can be done in a few easy steps, so read on to see how you can beat the clutter and become storage smart.
Have a thorough clear-out. Now is prime time to wade through your wardrobe, drawers, cupboards or toy baskets to identify anything your family no longer use. It’s important to have a realistic attitude during this task. Anything you or your child hasn’t worn or used for over a year isn’t likely to ever be picked up again. And if you have to blow the dust off, then this is a sure sign it’s lost its entertainment value.
- Store away bulky furniture. To create space for your tree and guests, using self storage can be a godsend. Self-storage facilities offer a host of benefits, including round-the-clock surveillance, 24/7 access to goods, and a wide range of available storage room sizes. Putting aside bulky items or furniture for the holiday period can give your home the space it desperately needs for entertaining.
- Rein in the Christmas decorations. We all know at least one person who buys up the decoration aisle each year in a bid to beat the neighbours – perhaps you’re guilty of this? But the truth is that once the merrymaking is over, light-up Snowmen and full-size reindeer will only burden your home with excess clutter. Either take the minimalist route by opting for simpler decorations, or stow away these ornaments in handy self-storage facilities to relieve your home of items that only have seasonal value.
Part with unused gifts. Do you have a cupboard full of unwanted Christmas gifts? If your relatives’ questionable taste has left you accumulating a host of neglected items then it’s probably time to part ways. Before launching into this year’s Noel, why not spread some festive cheer by bagging up your old gifts and sending them onto worthy causes?
- Store away your wintry objects for next year. Now flexible, affordable storage that relieves the stress from your home, self-storage is becoming an increasingly popular answer for homeowners across the world. When it’s time to dispel the decorations from your home, or if you need to tuck away seasonal sporting equipment for next winter, self storage is a safe, convenient option for households struggling for space.
We wish you happy holidays, and hope that these tips will help your home breathe easier once more.
The days are getting shorter and cold weather is drawing in; winter is coming. Are you prepared?
Winter is one of the toughest times of the year for your home, with adverse conditions potentially leading to a range of costly and troublesome issues.
The good news is that with a bit of preparation and some relatively simple improvements, you can ward off the ill-effects of snow, rain and sub-zero temperatures and enjoy a warm and prosperous winter in your home.
Check your windows and doors
Windows and doors are the gateways through which most of the heat in your home will escape. Even if you heat your home 24 hours a day at full blast, a single-pane window or a draughty door will allow that heat to escape. Essentially, you’re throwing away money!
There are a couple of actions you can take to limit the escape of heat in your home. The easiest and cheapest is to install draught excluders at the bottom of every door in your home; you can pick up draught excluders for relatively cheap at most DIY stores and installing them is as simple screwing the excluder to the bottom of your door. You might need to measure and saw the excluder to size but again, this is quite easy.
Most new homes come with double-glazed windows, although older homes will feature single pane windows. If you have the budget, upgrade to double-glazing; the savings you’ll make will far outweigh the initial expense.
If you do have double-glazing but still feel a draught, invest in some foam excluder strips. Although they are cheap and won’t last as long as metal excluders, they are easy to install and easy enough to remove in the warm summer months.
It is necessary to retain some ventilation in your home, however, so don’t close up absolutely every connection to the outside world. Extractor fans and wall vents help to reduce the level of moisture in your home. Having your windows open for short periods of time (in the middle of the day at the weekend when it’s warmer outside, for example) can also help with reducing damp and mold.
Loft and wall insulation
Loft and wall insulation are essential for trapping heat that would otherwise escape from your home, although installing this kind of insulation is a lot more difficult and expensive. The best way to determine whether your home has loft and wall insulation to call an expert to conduct a survey of your home although there are a couple of other tell tale signs, such as small drill holes on the outer wall of your home.
The installation of loft and wall insulation is a job best left to a professional, although the costs of doing calling in an expert will be more than justified by the savings you make in the long run.
Check your gutters
A lot of people only think about the inside of their home when undertaking winter improvements, but the effects of winter on the outside of your home can lead to just as much adversity. One area that can be particularly troublesome is the gutters.
Gutters are susceptible to blockages from fallen leaves; these blockages lead to water becoming trapped and pooling. In sub-zero temperatures, this pooled water freezes and this can lead to the gutter cracking.
As such, it’s important to check that your gutters aren’t blocked on a regular basis. Installing a leaf guard is also a good idea, as it reduces the amount of time you have to spend cleaning!
Check your boiler and pipes
A broken boiler is one of the worst things that can happen in winter, leaving you without hot water and heating. The cost of repairing a boiler can also make a serious dent in your bank account!
The boiler checks you should carry out include:
* Making sure that your boiler servicing is up to date.
* Insulating the condensate pipe with lagging.
* Checking the pressure of your boiler.
You should also run your heating on a regular basis to ensure that the boiler’s pipework doesn’t freeze up and crack. If you’re unsure about the operation of your boiler, call in an expert to help.
Winter can be an arduous time for a homeowner, but as demonstrated in this post, preparing for winter doesn’t take too much time or cost too much money. Be prepared, and you should enjoy a trouble-free winter.
When a business buys a commercial washing machine it expects that this valuable asset will contribute to their business fully and for many years.
Typically a commercial washing machine should have a life of over 10 years. This is of course dependent upon a number of factors.
- How much the machine is used
- How it is used by the operators
- The frequency and nature of the service and maintenance schedule
This article focuses on service and maintenance, and how this contributes to the good function and longevity of a commercial washing machine.
What is a service and maintenance contract?
When a washing machine is purchased new there is a warranty period which will either include parts and labour, or just parts. Most warranties have exclusion clauses and only come into effect when the machine has failed. And when a warranty claim is made it may take between 24 hours to a week to fix your washer (depending on the supplier).
Unlike a warranty, a service and maintenance contract is designed to prevent breakdowns and avoid the associated inconvenience and costs to the organisation. Which can be considerable.
Why would a service and maintenance contract be required?
Firstly, working parts wear out, even on high specification high quality models. This is especially true when the machine is being used in high usage environments, or if the machine is not being used properly. Some more advanced washing machines are able to detect issues that may lead to part failure and therefore machine failure. These machines are the able to inform the user via error or information notifications prior to the machine actually breaking down. In these cases, the user will still in most cases have to obtain the services of a qualified engineer to interpret the error and then do something about it.
Secondly, machines are used by people. Many washing machines built by reputable manufacturers are designed to be used in hard working environments. That said improper use can shorten the life of a machine. And unfortunately the occasional or even habitual improper use of a machine can be the norm if operators forget their training or if staff are changed regularly.
What can you expect on a service and maintenance contract?
Typically a service and maintenance contract is tailored to the machine and how often it is used. So a machine service may only be required every six months for an average machine with average usage. In more intensive washing environments a higher frequency may be required, such as quarterly.
What is important when buying a maintenance contract is to ensure that you are getting a genuine check and a price which includes all labour, staff re-training and if possible consumable parts.
A genuine service check should follow a multiple point checklist which covers all aspects of the machines ‘health’ and function. The service provider should be prepared to give you this before the event and after every service. Complete with a report of what they have found and any other further remedial work required. If they are unable to to do this or are vague about what you are getting for your money. Look elsewhere.
Given users matter in the function of machine, tailored staff training should be part of this service too.
The onward benefits
If you get a service and maintenance contract from the supplier of the machine there is a strong likelihood that you will be in a good position to get an extended warranty from the supplier as they will have a full service record of the machine.
A meaningful service and maintenance package tailored to your business needs can increase your chances that your washing equipment give will give your business uninterrupted service for many years.