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Basement Living? The Ultimate Flooring Option

Posted by on Jul 29, 2016 in Uncategorized |

With cities becoming increasingly crowded, homeowners in Melbourne are now digging deep to add another level to their home that can be used as a home theatre, a living room or an extra bedroom. However, it’s hard to imagine a basement being cosy without the warmth of engineered timber flooring. Hammer, nails, glue and a lot of backbreaking aside, you can achieve this floor in just a few DIY steps by choosing to install a floating floor that can cover up the cold concrete you always dread spending time on. Installing a floating floor Installing a floating floor is a simple task someone with basic DIY skills can accomplish; it’s effective in covering a large area in no time. Lay down a thin foam sheet to provide cushioning and sound-dampening before the installation of the floating floor. You can run the planks parallel with the longest wall for a visually consistent look. A small gap, usually a quarter inch of space, must be maintained to account for expansion. Prep your basement Check your basement for excessive moisture. Make sure the floor is dry before placing an underlayment to ensure additional moisture protection for your floating floor. Lay a poly film across the entire floor to allow your new floor to float freely. Install the first row by placing the planks starting from one corner of the floor using spacer blocks to allow the quarter of an inch allowance. Cut the planks to length at the ends against the wall. Use the leftover plank to start the next row to avoid wastage of material. Tap pieces into place using a hammering block at the end of every piece to achieve tight seams. Continue installing the planks until you reach the other end of your basement. You will probably have to cut the last piece of the row to fit, allowing the required expansion gap. To minimise pattern repeats, pull out at least three planks from different packages during the installation process. Once you’re finished with the planks, remove the spacers from the edge of the wall and cover up the imperfect edges near the wall using baseboards and mouldings to cover the gaps. With the huge range of patterns and types of flooring, you have the freedom of expressing your personal style and character with the limit being your imagination. Now you can choose the décor and furniture to compliment your newly cosy basement....

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When to Have Soil Tested and Removed for Contamination

Posted by on Jul 29, 2016 in Uncategorized |

Property owners may never give much thought to the soil on their property, at least not until there is a flood or they find that they can’t get grass to grow and flourish. However, soil that is contaminated with any type of pollutant can allow it to become airborne so that you breathe in dangerous chemicals, fumes, and the like. These contaminants can also get into nearby groundwater and even cause the soil to become unsteady so that a house or building shifts and settles. Note when you might consider having soil tested and then removed due to contamination. After a demolition Before any demolition is done, a demolition contractor should test a building for mould, lead, radon, asbestos, and other such materials. These materials should then be safely removed before a home or building is demolished. However, just because a company should test for contaminants doesn’t mean they actually do, or that they do a thorough job. After a home or building is demolished, even on a nearby property, consider having your own soil tested for any contamination that may have made its way to your property and then having a contaminated soil removal for your own safety. Rodent and pest infestation Rodents, roaches, bats, and other pests don’t just nest in your home but can also infest the soil of your property, as they may spread contamination through their droppings, dead carcasses, and the like. While an occasional mouse on your property doesn’t mean that your property is necessarily contaminated, a large infestation should indicate the need to have soil tested. A soil removal company can usually note the more common nesting sites for pests and test these areas in particular for contamination. Leaking or removal of storage tanks  Tanks that store hazardous and unhealthy materials such as propane or other fuels, or septic tanks, should be periodically checked for leaks so repair can be done quickly. As with checking for contamination in a home to be demolished, just because this work should be done doesn’t mean it’s always actually done. If you have such a tank on your property or there is one stored nearby, or if you know that a leaking tank has been removed, you should consider getting your soil tested and replaced. Even a small leak can lead to a large contamination of your soil and allow these materials to collect on your property and around your home, which is unsafe and...

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Understanding the Various Types of Steel You Can Use in Your Construction Project

Posted by on Jul 29, 2016 in Uncategorized |

Steel is an important part of construction. You need it for a wide range of purposes like reinforcing the concrete or as guardrails to ensure safety along the edges of balconies and stairs. Choosing the right kind of stainless steel will enhance the strength and durability of the material wherever you have used it. When buying construction materials for your workers, you need an understanding of the various types of steel to help you buy the right type of steel for most suitable purpose. Here is a discussion that will help you ask for the right thing from your stainless steel supplier: Martensitic Stainless Steel The martensitic is a type of stainless steel with a high amount of carbon. The high carbon content allows fabricators to make the martensitic steel very hard by subjecting it to immense heat. This makes it very rigid because the heat stretches the metal to extreme tensile limits. They are thus hard to cut and weld. The rigidity comes with lots strength, making it ideal for applications such as structural steel for your house’s foundation, pillars and beams. However, you should note that the martensitic steel has a low resistance to corrosion, and you should use it in areas where it won’t come into contact with water. Using waterproofing concrete will certainly prolong its life and help it retain the much-needed strength. Austenitic Stainless Steel Naturally, austenitic stainless steel offers good resistance to rust and corrosion, making it ideal for building applications where the metal will be exposed to agents of corrosion. You can use austenitic stainless steel for guardrails on balconies and staircases where the metal is continually exposed to moisture and air. Besides its resistance to corrosion, it is also suitable for guardrails because of strength and ductility, making it easy for your workers to bend and weld them with minimal chances of breaking. This ductility is achievable because of the high chromium content. Ferritic Stainless Steel Ferritic stainless steel is a slight variation of the austenitic stainless steel. Generally, you can weld it, although that is not advisable when you are dealing with thick sections. It has poor pitting resistance, meaning that you are likely to damage a large section of the material if you try to drill or create holes in it. However, it has better resistance to corrosion compared to its austenitic counterpart. Therefore, you can use it in harsher environments with more moisture and higher temperatures such as outdoor swimming pool...

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Caring for Your Cooling Tower: 3 Common Issues

Posted by on Jul 19, 2016 in Uncategorized |

Because cooling towers operate in outdoor environments, they are exposed to the weather which can cause debris and dirt to accumulate and local wildlife and pests to gather, which are attracted by the wet and warm environment. These two factors can cause serious operational problems. Below is a brief guide to 3 common problems which affect cooling tower systems. Scaling Scaling occurs when minerals such as calcium carbonate which were dissolved in the water supply build up within the cooling tower system. The formation of scale can reduce the efficiency of the cooling tower’s heat exchange process, which means that every part of the system must work harder in order to maintain the proper levels of cooling. Factors which can contribute to increased scaling include the pH level, quality and temperature of the water supply. Fouling  Fouling happens when particles such as oil, organic matter and silt, which have been suspended in the water supply fall out and form a deposit. The deposits created by the fouling process have a similar impact as scaling as they form an additional layer of insulation which reduces the system’s heat exchange capability and places additional strain on the cooling tower. Causes of fouling include corrosion, leaks and low water velocities. Microbiological Growth Because they are warm and wet, cooling towers are the ideal environment in which microorganisms can grow. There are two types of microbiological growth which occur within cooling towers. Planktonic: This type of growth is normally found floating within the water supply. Sessile: This refers to biological growth which develops on surfaces within the cooling system. Microbiological growth can cause problems within a cooling tower system because it has insulating properties and can also contribute to increased levels of corrosion within the system. Also, the byproducts produced by microbiological growths can contribute to the development of further microbiological activity. For this reason, it can be very difficult to kill and remove any microbiological growth. Microbiological activity can occur on the tower structure, on heat exchange surfaces and in the system’s piping. It is important that you monitor and treat any outbreaks of biological activity in a cooling tower so its growth can be limited and controlled. If you notice any of these conditions developing within your cooling tower, it is vital that you contact a professional cooling tower maintenance and repair service, who will be able to assess the problem and carry out any required work on the...

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Electrical wiring tips | Common electrical wiring mistakes

Posted by on Jul 7, 2016 in Uncategorized |

Electrical wiring is a crucial aspect in workplaces and homes. When it’s not done right, the wiring may lead to electrocution and injuries, and this is something you want to avoid at all costs. Having knowledge of wrong wiring practices will help you spot any anomalies in your environment. If you’ve moved to a new workplace or have bought a new home, then you should take a look at the electrical wiring to ensure that it doesn’t put anyone at risk of injury. Some wiring practices may even be illegal and violate building codes. Here are some common mistakes to look out for. Wires stuffed into a switch box One of the most common mistakes made is crowding wires into an outlet or switch box. With ever-growing electrical needs, more and more wires are needed, and this gradually becomes an electrical hazard. If you spot an overcrowded outlet box in your workplace, then you need to inform the administrators. Too many crowded wires may lead to overheating, which eventually melts the wire insulation. The overheating may eventually lead to a fire. Using a larger outlet box can help prevent the overheating. You can also have electrical contractors install plaster or mud rings that manage the wires. Electrical connections outside boxes Another electrical wiring mistake to watch out for is connections outside electrical boxes. These are small boxes that normally have a lid to obscure the electrical connections. Splice or electrical boxes are designed to offer protection in case of sparks or loose connections. All connections are supposed to be within the box. Additionally, these electrical boxes guard connections against heat and mishandling. Any connections outside these boxes can easily become hazardous. Anyone may accidentally touch them and get electrocuted. Recessed splice boxes If you’ve recently moved into a new home, then look for your splice box. This is also called the control or junction box, and it’s where all the wires in a room converge. These boxes send power from the mains to the other parts of the room and are very important when it comes to troubleshooting electrical problems. However, they may be buried in drywalls or underneath the floor. You need to contact qualified contractors if you can’t find the splice box. Having these boxes recessed in walls makes it harder to detect or stop any short circuits. Additionally, if the wires start melting and overheating, a fire can easily start. For more information, contact commercial electrical contractors in your...

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4 Things To Consider When Planning Where To Place Your Skip Bin At Home

Posted by on Mar 1, 2016 in Uncategorized |

So you just ordered a cheap skip bin for your domestic removal. However, have you thought about where you’re going to place it once it arrives? Have you thought about how the location of the bin might affect whatever removal you’re planning to embark on? In this article, discover what you need to bear in mind as you plan for this last step in your bin hire process. Have the skip delivered early Think about having the skip bin delivered ahead of time. That is, before the said works commence. Doing so helps to avoid any last minute inconveniences.  For example, you get enough time to decide where you want the bin to be placed. You also avoid delaying the works. Thirdly, if the bin is already on site when the removal or construction work begins, the trash can go straight into the bin instead of being piled up on the ground. Place the skip where a truck can access it easily You also need to consider if the truck delivering, and collecting, the bin will be able to easily access the spot where you want the bin located. If the path is too narrow, if there are any obstructions or if the path is unsafe for the bin truck, it will not be possible to place the bin in that location. Choose an open spot where the bin delivery and collection will not only be possible, it will be fast and easy as well. Keep the bin close to the workplace Try as much as possible to have the bin placed as close to the work site as possible. Such proximity has several benefits. One, it reduces chances of littering your compound. That is, between the bin and the work site. Two, it helps save time. And three, it reduces the workload for whoever is in charge of loading the bin, especially if this will be done manually. Place the bin where ground damage won’t be an issue Skip bins are made of heavy steel. They are therefore heavy and bulky. This is compounded further when the bin is loaded with trash. As such, it is safer to have the bin placed on a spot where damage to the ground is not a concern, e.g. on the blacktop. If you have to have the bin placed on paved grounds, lay some wooden planks down to cushion against damage. By considering the above, you will have indirectly helped ease your removal works in many ways. You will also identify the perfect spot for the bin and avoid any last minute hassles once the bin...

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Benefits and Types of Concrete Driveways

Posted by on Feb 23, 2016 in Uncategorized |

Your choice of material for your driveway will make the difference between it enhancing its overall curb appeal or detracting from the aesthetics of your home. The good news is that you do not have to break the bank investing in materials such as imported cobblestone to ensure you have an attractive driveway. Despite the misconception that concrete is a bland material, it offers numerous benefits and also comes in a myriad of types. This ensures that every homeowner not only gets to enjoy the advantages of having a concrete driveway, but they can also choose unique designs that will complement the appearance of their residence. What are the benefits of concrete driveways? There are numerous benefits of opting for concrete driveways. These include Cost effectiveness: There are two reasons why concrete is an economical option if you are looking to renovate your driveway. For one, it is manufactured with readily available materials. Hence, there are no additional costs associated with a low supply of materials. Secondly, concrete is sturdy. This means it will require virtually no maintenance, yet will still last for a significant amount of time. This also reduces costs associated with repairs. High quality: Due to how resilient concrete is, it is one of the best quality materials you could opt for your driveway. This is especially true if your driveway has to endure heavy traffic from multiple vehicles. Versatile design options: Gone are the days when concrete driveways simply constituted concrete slabs that have been laid on the ground. With advances in technology, you could consider numerous design options. Thus, giving you the flexibility to experiment with textures, colours and more. What are the different types of concrete driveways? There are a number of techniques that concrete contractors use to create designs in concrete driveways. Some of the different types of concrete driveways that you could consider include: Coloured concrete: This is one of the most affordable options you could consider. The concrete is re-dyed your colour of choice before being laid down. Stamped concrete: This type of concrete design works toward giving your driveway depth. This is done through adding texture and colour to the concrete. Stencilled concrete: As the name suggests, designs are made into this concrete driveway through the use of stencils. Some of the popular options for homeowners include making the concrete look like bricks, mimicking pavers and more. Pebbled concrete: This type of concrete driveway will have pebbles exposed on its surface, rather than being fully mixed into the concrete aggregate.  For more information, talk to a professional like Aclass Concrete &...

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Expert Tips When Performing DYI Resurfacing On Asphalt Driveways

Posted by on Feb 8, 2016 in Uncategorized |

Asphalt driveways generally boast of a long lifespan, but that doesn’t mean that they are indestructible. The elements and traffic on the driveway give it a hard time, causing it to turn from it’s glamorous black to a pitiful gray. Resurfacing normally solves the issue. It usually involves applying a new coat over your driveway and gets your asphalt driveway back to its original look. It’s a lot cheaper than a complete replacement and an excellent way to save your pockets. So if you’ve got a driveway, then here are some expert tips you can use before resurfacing.   When to resurface First things first, you need to know when to resurface. Doing it too early when you don’t need to simply exhaust your pockets, and resurfacing too late may ruin the foundation. That will eventually force you to resurface or replace the driveway a bit too soon, and you will spend a fortune. You could conduct a simple test. Pour water on the driveway on a hot sunny day, and if you spot a ring after the water evaporates, then the driveway needs resurfacing. This simply proves that the water has soaked in it, and the sealant no longer works. The longer the ring takes to dry, the worse the condition of your driveway is. Stains have to go The surface needs to have no stains. Applying a resurfacer on a driveway with stains is like taking a shower with your clothes on. It’s just not effective. Any accumulated debris on the surface needs to be swept off using a leaf blower or broom. You can then brush the surface using a wire brush, and later bleach the driveway to get rid of any algae. Oil stains are a nuisance when it comes to resurfacing. They reduce the adhesion of the material to the driveway. You can get rid of such stains by pouring a degreaser and then finally scrubbing it off. Add a bonding surface afterwards. Repair the surface first Before you start on the actual resurfacing, you have to ensure that you’ve properly taken care of all the cracks. Clean them thoroughly before adding any filler into it, and ensure you get rid of any weeds between the cracks. Remember, you’re not just looking for any filler. Adding a monotone coloured caulk, for instance, may cause the colour to stand out like a sore thumb, particularly after a year or two when the harsh winters and severe ultraviolet rays hit. You need to match your filler with the coloured pieces of stone beneath the black asphalt to ensure an even look years down the line. Choose the right resurfacer Also, ensure that the resurfacing material you’re going to use has got polymers, and you can confirm this by simply reading the components or asking the seller. Polymers are more weather resistant, and they assist in increasing flexibility and durability of the coat. If you can find a resurfacer with sand additives, the better. Sand increases the traction of the...

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Why Asphalt Is The Best Option For Your Driveway.

Posted by on Jan 28, 2016 in Uncategorized |

You want to give your home a new look. But you don’t have to focus on the house alone, your driveway is very important as it gives the first impression of your home. If you are deliberating on the best option, then consider having an asphalt driveway. This why: Cost effective Asphalt driveways are less expensive to install and maintain. This can be the cheapest option in terms of cost compared to other costlier options like paved and concrete driveways. A basic asphalt driveway can cost about $2-5 per square foot whereas the same size for a concrete driveway is $3-9. Easier to repair  It is much easier to repair cracked parts of an asphalt driveway than any other options. Small cracks in asphalt surfaces can be sealed and larger ones replaced easily. To extend its lifespan, it is recommended that you seal asphalt during Autumn but once every three years. Easier to maintain and modify An example is when a utility line or pipe must pass under your driveway, repairs can be performed easily and quickly than concrete. What you have to do is dig up the passageway which after placing the pipes you can seal back with the new asphalt. Attractive and inviting surface The smooth and continuous black surface of your asphalt driveway gives it a good impression and brings a nice appearance to your compound. It also creates a good impression about your home and way of life. This means that a smooth asphalt surface can be easier for kids to play and run on. Strength and durability A properly installed and well maintained asphalt driveway’s longevity can last up to 20-30 years. But this is determined by the stability and state of the sub-grade, quality of layer installation, structure of drainage plans and the regional climate. Excellent returns on investment An attractive asphalt driveway adds value to your home investment. Home buyers can prejudge the upkeep and the condition of the house upon the physical condition of the asphalt driveway. So having a well-maintained asphalt driveway can be important, business-wise. Flexibility to weather An asphalt driveway can handle extreme/harsh weather and temperature fluctuations much better than concrete. This is because it flexes to withstand freezing and defrosting. During winter, the asphalt’s black surface heats up from the sun’s radiant heat and then melts up the snow and ice off unlike concrete. From the above guide, it is easier to understand why asphalt can be a better driveway material compared to other alternatives. The fact that it’s cheap, fitting in every environment, and easier to repair and maintain makes its your ideal...

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Colour Schemes For Small Bathrooms

Posted by on Jan 22, 2016 in Uncategorized |

Having renovated your bathroom, you are now facing the dubious decision of what color of paint or wallpaper to choose. This difficult decision doesn’t have to be harrowing. There are plenty of colours to choose from even though you have a small bathroom. The last thing you want to do is place colours in the room that will make it look smaller than it actually is. So, before you schedule the appointment with the local painters, consider these options for your bathroom. Lighter Shade of Blue Thinking about blue is a great thing when deciding on the colour scheme of your small bathroom. There are many shades or hues that will look wonderful in the room you have just opened up. Any blue that is associated with water or the tides will go great in the bathroom. It will lend a serene and almost floating feeling to those who visit this room when at your home and will delight you every time you see it. Stripes in All Colours The old adage that patterns do not mix never had to deal with renovating a small bathroom. A small diamond pattern on the floor with alternating wide stripes on the walls will make that small bathroom look a bit bigger. Small and large stripes of all but the very dark colours alternating along the wall  will make a room expand visually and will make the most of your newly renovated bathroom. Horizontal striping will make the bathroom seem deeper or longer than it actually is, but won’t make the walls seem farther apart like the vertical optical illusion will. Checkered Tile Checkered glass tile will give the walls in your newly renovated bathroom a 3D effect when you and others look at it because the actual tiles are about half an inch to an inch deep. Placing the tile boards all around the bathroom in sea water colors will make it seem as if you are in the water or under it and can give you a very relaxed atmosphere in the bathroom itself. If having that feeling is not what you are after, try placing the tile boards on half the wall and painting the other half an off white colour for a clear blue horizon aspect. Neutrals All neutral colours will make your bathroom cozy and seem just a tad larger than it actually is because most neutral colours have a white base to them. These colours of beige, sand and tan are great for bathrooms because anything you decorate with will automatically “go” with your choice of colour. Remember to choose painters that are willing to work with your ideas and can help you use these ideas as a starting point for the bathroom colour options of your dreams. Be open to their suggestions and make sure to ask questions along the way. If you’re looking for a painter in your area, visit Allure Painting...

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Top Reasons to Work with a Warehouse Labour Hire Company

Posted by on Jan 15, 2016 in Uncategorized |

You are receiving more orders than ever before, but unfortunately, you don’t have the warehouse staff to handle it. Whether this is a seasonal issue or a step toward permanent growth, you should consider outsourcing your hiring needs and working with a warehousing labour hire company like DSC Personnel. Here’s how it can save you time, money and energy: 1. Warehousing Labour Companies Take Care of the Hassles Related to Hiring If you need to hire new employees for your warehouse, you have to put out employment ads, review applications and meet with prospective employees. You also have to check references and possibly call old employers. This process takes time, money and effort, but if you turn it over to a warehousing labour company, you don’t have to do any of that. You simply meet with the company, decide which type of employees you want and let them do the rest. 2. You Don’t Need to Worry About Training If you promote your own employees to your warehouse floor or if you hire new employees, you have to spend a lot of time training them. You may have to teach them about special machinery, your organization strategy, safety methods and a range of other things. If you outsource your employment needs, however, you can ensure that you only receive well trained workers, and you don’t have to waste time and money training them. 3. Warehousing Employee Hire Companies Can Find Certified Workers In addition to training, if you use in-house workers, you may have to help them get certified. This can be a long process. Similarly, if you hire employees with certifications, you may have to waste time checking their certifications. When you work with a warehousing employee hire company, you can specify which certifications you want your employees to have. For example, you can request a warehouse worker with forklift certification, and the hire company is responsible for verifying that. 4. You Won’t Have to Worry About Employee Taxes When you hire employees, you have to calculate your payroll taxes and make contributions to social security or unemployment insurance on their behalf. This takes time every week, and adding new employees to your warehouse adds additional stress to your human resources or payroll departments. When you work with a labour hire company, it pays your warehouse employees, and you simply pay the hire company a lump sum. At tax time, you deduct this cost as a business expense, but you don’t have to worry about the employee taxes throughout the year. As a result, the accounting is process can be a lot simpler when you work with a labour hire...

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