Elegant Wooden Stair Types: Introduction

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Stairs are important at home, as they are highlighting features in most houses. Stairs features a variety of schemes and layouts, all dependent on the homeowner and the budget. Before choosing, you should look at the different types of wooden stairs. The Four Main Types Of Wooden Stairs Saddle Stairs The most common stair set. … Read more Elegant Wooden Stair Types: Introduction

14 Most Popular Interior Design Themes Explained

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Farmhouse This style, often also described as Rustic, is usually a mix of reclaimed wood, antique pieces and classic agricultural charm. Colonial Colonial is typically a nod back to America’s birth. The style mixes traditional European pieces with early American. Furnishings are usually spare and colors dignified. Modern This style is characterized by clean lines … Read more 14 Most Popular Interior Design Themes Explained

How To Choose A Backyard Pool Design

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If you’ve decided to add a pool to your backyard, congratulations! You’ll about to have amazing summers with friends and family for years to come. But before you start racking up summer memories by the pool, you’ll have to decide on the design and size of the pool. The biggest questions many ask when they … Read more How To Choose A Backyard Pool Design

How To Remove Pet Odors From Your Home

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Pet owners, you know the drill: your lovable, well-meaning family friend is behaving well, until that fateful moment when they decide to relieve themselves on your carpet. Or your pet’s natural odors start to soak into household surfaces, leaving an undesirable scent in your home.

Instead of trying the same old methods that only lead to short term results, perhaps it’s time to consider some new ways of removing pet related odors from your home. There are a variety of homemade cleaners that can be used to alleviate this common problem. Read more about these do it yourself solutions, so that you can eliminate pet odors from your domicile once and for all.

 Vinegar and Baking Soda Cleaner

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Vinegar and baking soda cleaner (via Lifehacker)

It doesn’t get much easier than this. Vinegar and baking soda are staple items that should be found in just about everyone’s kitchen. All you need are two cups of lukewarm water, a spray bottle, another two cups filled with vinegar (preferably white distilled) and at least four heaping tablespoons of whatever baking soda you have available to you.

When cleaning the area, start off by blotting as much of the mess as possible. This step is quite possibly the most crucial and it is important that you remove as much of the mess as possible before applying the baking soda/vinegar solution.

Don’t be afraid to use an old rag to sop up the mess and you can also place something heavy (like a book) over the rag to ensure that it penetrates the soiled area deeply. Once you have done this, it is time to put together your cleaner.

Take an oversize bowl and mix the cups of lukewarm water with white distilled vinegar. Add the tablespoons of baking soda afterwards, but be sure to keep an eye on the bowl, because it may fizz over. If the bowl is in danger of being unable to hold in the fizz, you may need to use less baking soda.

Once you’ve successfully combined your ingredients, it is time to pour the solution into a spray bottle and watch the magic take place. Spray the entire area thoroughly and give it five minutes to soak in. Take a soft cloth once the five minutes are over and gently blot the area.

Don’t own a spray bottle? No problem, simply pour the solution onto the area you wish to remove the scent from. You can also add baking soda to the area after blotting, which will create a volcano of cleaning power once the vinegar and water are added.

Baking Soda/Hydrogen Peroxide Cleaner

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If your home is suffering from the aftermath of a smelly pet, hydrogen peroxide is another great household item that can get straight to the root of the problem. When you have tough stains and odors, hydrogen peroxide can help to break down and remove them, with the help of our old friend baking soda.

For this cleaner, all you need are some paper towels and/or old rags, a cup of baking soda (give or take a little bit), half a cup of hydrogen peroxide (3 percent), a teaspoon of the most environmentally friendly dish soap available to you and a bowl to mix all of these ingredients in.

Cover the soiled or smelly area with the rags/paper towels and walk over it. You can also use a book to get to deeper stains. If there is no liquid to remove from the area, then sprinkle the baking soda over the area, in a generous fashion. Then mix the hydrogen peroxide with the dish liquid.

While adding baking soda to the area, use a brush or cloth to gently scrub, then allow the solution to sit for at least 15 minutes. After the time has passed, be sure to vacuum it thoroughly.

DIY Citrus Enzyme Cleaner

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Citrus Enzyme Cleaner (via Beautiful Somehow)

When reading about potential cleaning solutions for your pet odor, you will come across fancy looking products that boast about their use of enzymes. With just a little bit of help, you can create your own enzymes at home. All you need are seven tablespoons of brown sugar, a liter of water, 1 1/2 cups of lemon and orange peels, plus a clear bottle large enough to hold the entire solution.

Start off by funneling your brown sugar into the bottle, then adding the fruit peels. Next comes the liter of water. Give the container a vigorous shake, so that the peels have a chance to mix with water and sugar.

Once you’ve done this, unscrew the top of the container and leave it off halfway. This allows all of the gases to be released in a safe manner. Otherwise, the pressure can build up inside of the bottle and lead to a very messy explosion. Let it sit for three months and then it is ready to use.

If you are in a hurry, then add 1 tsp. of Yeast and cleaner will be ready to use in just 2 weeks.

To remove stains use undiluted enzyme, it does wonders! To use it for other house cleaning, just add water. Usually 1 part enzyme to 10 parts water.

Concluding thoughts

Our four legged pals have a way of creating scents that linger for an extended period of time. Instead of heading to the pet store and spending an exorbitant amount of money on specialized pet odor removers, you can utilize simple household items to get the job done more quickly and efficiently.

Pets do not mean to create objectionable odors inside of our homes. They are not born with the ability to recognize the error of their ways. With homemade cleaners, this is a problem that pet owners are no longer forced to deal with.

Animals are such agreeable friends – they ask no questions; they pass no criticisms.

George Eliot

Guide to Polish Concrete Floors At Home

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Image source: Yupiu

Concrete floors make for spectacular finishes, whether they are installed indoors or outdoors. To ensure that your floor remains looking its best, regular cleaning is required. Your floor will also benefit tremendously from occasional polishing. In addition to a glamorous and shiny floor, polishing also keeps the floor in great shape for much longer time. To polish your floor effectively, you’ll have to work in phases, using disks of different texture. Patience may also be required, but the results will certainly be worth all the effort and labor.

Let’s begin.

Step 1: Sweep

Begin by cleaning your floor before applying polish. Sweep all the dirt with a broom and gather it all in a dustpan. A vacuum cleaner will also do to clear all dirt from the floor.

Step 2: Mop

Fill up the mopping bucket with clean water and add some mild detergent. Using the mop, clean your floor to remove residual dust. Mild stains will easily come off when mopping. Leave the floor to dry completely before you start polishing.

Step 3: Polish With Coarse Grit

Begin with a coarse grit polishing disk, like one that measures about 500 when polishing your floor. Coarse grit tends to be more effective on tough stains and rough surfaces on the floor. Work systematically, starting at one end of the floor and moving up from side to side till the floor is completely covered. Use circular motions to cover the whole floor. Make sure you place more attention on tough stains so that you try as much as possible to get rid of them. Be careful not to make any overlaps you work.

Step 4: Polish With Fine Grit

After using the coarse grit disk to polish, switch to a fine grit disk. Using circular motions, work your way over the entire floor making sure you don’t overlap any spot. Residual stains should lift off when you use a fine grit. The concrete floor will look cleaned as all the rough patches and stains are removed with the fine grit.

Step 5: Polish With Extra Fine Grit

For the final phase, polish with the finest grit disk, like the 1500. This will give your floor a beautiful, glass-like sheen. Again, use circular motions to work the grit across your concrete floor. Avoid overlapping your circles as you work your way.

Step 6: Apply Concrete Floor Polish

Using the floor grinder, apply concrete floor polish onto the entire surface. This will give that extra sheen you need. At this point your concrete floor will be looking its best.

Benefits of a Living Green Roof

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With the environment becoming an increasingly important topic, the subject of a living green roof often comes into play. You may have heard about these living roofs or may have seen tidbits floating around on the internet about them but are probably unsure of their many benefits. While there are a few cons to having a living green roof, the benefits are quite substantial and make this a real option for anyone from homeowners to apartment building owners alike.

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Benefits

With so much metal and concrete surrounding us, we often feel like we’ve lost an essential part of living, that being nature. Green roofing systems allow you to bring back nature into construction, provide a great visual appeal, and provide us with an extra bit of natural beauty that also serves several important purposes.

Green living roofs on large buildings can provide a nice outdoor space for tenants that they would not otherwise have living in cities and can add significant value to the atmosphere of a large unit. The average home can also benefit aesthetically from all a living roof has to offer and can provide a form of landscaping most people wouldn’t think of adding.

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The environmental benefits are quite substantial. A living roof reduces the amount of materials which end up in landfills through the longer life expectancy of the roof itself, extend the life expectancy of heating and cooling units, use recycled materials, and purify the air and water runoff.  As urban centers are quite hotter than we’d like them due to all that concrete and steel, use of a living green roof can substantially lower the temperature of the building itself as well as the environment around it. This reduction in the Urban Heat Island (UHI) effect happens when the living vegetation on the buildings horizontal and vertical surfaces absorbs heat, which would otherwise be deflected and increase the overall temperature of the area. This roof type also filters pollution, reduces dust, and can reduce the effects of greenhouse gases.

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Green roof also helps with storm water management. Instead of rainwater and melting snow pouring off of roofs onto sidewalks and then being picked up by the storm drain system, roof structure absorbs the water for the plants’ use and are eventually put back into the environment through the usual process of evaporation.  Plants causes changes to the water temperature further cooling the area and also filter toxins and pollutants which would normally end up in the storm drain system eventually turning up in the water supply.

Air quality is drastically improved in communities which use living green roofing systems as plant life also filters the air. Plants breathe in carbon dioxide and emit oxygen as part of their normal function so this not only cleans the air, it adds more oxygen to the air.

This roof type will also give considerable savings in your heating and cooling budget through their insulation factors. Many websites are available which can tell you how much you are likely to save depending on building type, but some studies revealed that it reduced the need for heating and cooling by up to 75%.

Green roofs also reduce noise level within the home substantially, act as a fire retardant, and can reduce the amount of electromagnet radiation from nearby wireless and communication towers.

Green roofs also provide an ecosystem for birds and other beneficial wildlife, the types of which can depend on what time of plant life you will include in your roof design. With some roof types, herbs, vegetables, fruit, or medicinal plants are also included adding extra value to your roof beyond its cosmetic, cost savings, and environmental appeal.

Here’s a great video from Tedx talk about green movement.

 

Here is an infographic about Ford’s green roof.

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Disadvantages

Cons of a green roof include the initial expense involved. Any new roof is expensive, so we just naturally think costly when we think of roofs anyway. This con is nearly negated  by the fact that this roof type will outlast the more usual asphalt shingle roofs and their toxic additions to the environment. It requires more maintenance than a standard roof. Dead plants aren’t really going to do you any good. This roof requires that you take care of it much like you would take care of your yard.

Repairs associated with any leaks further on down the line can cost a bit more as the person hired would have to dig down through the vegetation and its medium underneath. As this roof is a living ecosystem, you can count on live things wanting to live in it. If you don’t like birds, rodents, or bugs on your roof, this roof isn’t for you. These are a natural part of an ecosystem and do help to keep it in balance.

On the downside, the occasional critter can make its way inside your home should you have a hole in your roof later on. If you had a hole in your regular old roof you’d be likely to have birds, rodents or bugs find their way in anyway so this isn’t that big of an additional risk factor. As stated above, the issue would only really come into play when having to repair a section of roof at some point due to the digging and replacing of materials when the job is completed.

Conclusion

There are several types of green roof available, both the standard or modular types, and each has its own set of pros and cons to consider. Do some research, speak to both green roof and standard roof contractors to help you and assess whether this roof type is for you.

If you have any question, feel free to contact us or drop a comment below.