5 Ways To Take Care Of Granite Countertops

granite countertops

In addition to being beautiful to look at, granite countertops are also durable. If you have the countertops in your home, you will agree with me that they don’t come cheap.

For you to keep the countertops looking great and give you long service, you need to take good care of them. There are plenty of ways in which you can do it, with the most common ones being:

Seal the countertops

The sealant provides the countertops with an extra layer of protection against spills. If you just moved to a new house, chances are that the countertops are already sealed as it’s customary for countertop contractors to seal the countertops at installation.

When sealing the surfaces, go for a high quality penetrating sealant. A good quality product is one that can last for up to 15 years and is oleophobic.

Regardless of how enticing cheap sealants look, stay away from them as they don’t last for long hence you have to keep on resealing the surfaces which is extremely expensive in the long run.

When applying the sealant, ensure that the countertops are bone dry. This way you are sure that the sealant will penetrate up to the deepest layers.

Clean the surfaces thoroughly

Other than sealing granite countertops, you also need to keep the surfaces clean. How do you do this?

Once a day, wipe the surfaces with a damp, soft, piece of cloth and some dish soap or multipurpose cleaner. Once the surfaces are clean, dry them with a soft cloth and buff them as much as you can.

When spills happen, blot them immediately. Use a paper towel or soft cloth to do it. Don’t wipe the spills as they can spread making cleaning even harder.

Protect the surfaces from hot pans and pots

One time exposure of the countertops to the hot pans and pots won’t damage the countertops as the surfaces are tough and heat resistant. The problem comes when you constantly expose the surfaces to high temperatures.

To protect the surfaces from damage, ensure that the hot items don’t come into contact with the countertops. When handling hot cups or liquid-filled pots, place a coaster under the cups or pots.

You should be ultra-cautious when dealing with dark-colored liquids such as red wine and juice as they have been shown to lead to more serious stains.

Disinfect the countertops

Kitchens are breeding grounds for bacteria and germs; therefore, it’s wise to think about how you are going to disinfect your countertops.

Many people think they only need to whip out the bleach and they will be good to go, but you should be cautious about it.

Bleach contains materials that are harmful to the surface which leaves it dull and etched. Instead of using bleach, use dish soaps with antimicrobial chemicals that don’t harm the countertops.

To strengthen the antimicrobial abilities of the soap, use small amounts of isopropyl alcohol. You only need to spray the solution on the counter then wipe it with a clean, dry cloth.

Don’t cut on granite

Granite is tough and harder than most natural stones in the market. While this is the case, it doesn’t mean you should cut food directly on the countertops.

The tough nature of the countertops damages the knives and dulls the blades so only consider cutting directly on the countertops if you don’t mind having to sharpen or replace the knives regularly.

Most of the foods you cut also release moisture that can penetrate the pores of the stone so if the countertops aren’t properly sealed, they develop stains.

Granite contractors Rockville recommend you have a chopping board in place all the time. Never cut directly on the countertops.

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HVAC Companies: 6 Tricks To Having An Energy Efficient Furnace

HVAC companies

The leaves are changing color, and that latte isn’t enough to stave off the morning cold. It’s winter and as a homeowner, it’s your responsibility to keep the house warm, comfortable, and energy-efficient throughout the winter season.

Luckily, there are several things you can do to make it possible. Here are some of these things as given by HVAC companies:

Do have a programmable thermostat

Using a programmable thermostat, you can preset temperatures for different times of the day. Set higher temperatures when you are in the house and lower temperatures when you aren’t at home.

According to HVAC experts, proper use of programmable thermostats will see you saving up to 20% of your heating bills. Heartwarming, isn’t it?

Other programmable thermostats allow you to set up to four temperatures settings—morning, day, evening, and overnight. If you have the budget, you should even go for high-end models that understand that you have different temperature needs for different days of the week. These allow you to program the thermostat for up to five days.

If you don’t already have a programmable thermostat, get one from your local store. You can also order online. When buying the thermostat, ensure it’s of high quality. It also should have a high energy rating.

Regularly inspect the air filters

Furnaces have air filters behind the vent grill. Since the furnace is working too hard during the heating season, it’s common for the air filters to get dirty.

Inspect the filters for any dirt and, if present, replace them. If your HVAC system has a permanent electrostatic filter, wash and reuse it.

Regular inspection and cleaning of air filters not only prevents the furnace from working too hard, but it also prolongs its life.

As you are inspecting and replacing the air filters, also change the humidifier. You also should set the humidistat if your system has it.

Cover the AC condenser

To protect the furnace from falling icicles, you should cover it. One of the best and cheapest items you can use for protection is a large trash can lid. Remember to secure the lid with bungee cords. If you don’t have the trash can, use a board to cover the fan.

You shouldn’t wrap the condenser with a plastic tarp as it will trap the moisture inside. This makes the unit work too hard, which drives up your energy bill.

Clean the heat exchanger

At least once during the heating season, ask an experienced furnace technician to clean the heat exchanger. During the cleaning, the technician should also inspect the unit for cracks that can lead to dangerous carbon monoxide poisoning.

Use the ceiling fans

If you are like other homeowners, you use the ceiling fan to cool the house. Due to this, it might sound absurd to use the fans to heat the house.

Moving the fan blades in the reverse direction warms up the air down near the floor. The fans are more effective in rooms with high ceilings.

All you need to do is to set the fan to the slowest speed, and you will warm up your house at a meager price.

Properly use the space heater

The space heater saves you a lot of money as you don’t have to heat the entire house. While this is the case, you should be cautious about how you use it. As a rule of thumb, don’t use more than one heater in a room.

According to furnace repair services Long Island, you should never leave the furnace unattended. You also shouldn’t put the heater near furniture or drapes as it can easily catch fire.

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Dishwasher Repair: Expert Tips On How To Take Care Of Your Dishwasher

dishwasher repair

For you to avoid spending a lot of money on dishwasher repair and ensure the dishwasher is functioning optimally, you need to take good care of your unit. You do this by:

Using the dishwasher

It might sound absurd that one of the ways of maintaining the dishwasher is using it. Have you come across a car that hasn’t been used for months? It was coming apart, right? The same thing happens to the dishwasher when you don’t use it for a long time.

Regular use of the dishwasher also prevents debris from settling at the bottom leading to clogs. When cleaning the dishes, you also clean the dishwasher; therefore, you don’t have to keep on cleaning it.

Even if your kitchen isn’t too active, ensure you run the dishwasher once a day.

Cleaning the kitchen appliance

Do you clean your bathtub? Just as you have to clean it, you also have to clean the dishwasher. To get rid of any buildup, run a load with just vinegar. Fill a bowl with vinegar and place it at the top shelf in the dishwasher. Also, consider pouring some vinegar at the bottom.

This cycle breaks dirt or debris that might be present.

To clean the inner surfaces, use a warm rag and household cleaner. When cleaning the dishwasher, pay attention to the space between the door and bottom of the tub as food particles collect here leading to mold growth.

If there are food particles, paper pieces, or other debris at the spray arms, remove them using a sewing needle or pipe cleaner. Some homeowners use a toothpick. Don’t do this as the tip can break inside the wash arm.

Loading it correctly

Overloading the dishwasher happens when you are in a busy kitchen, or you are looking to save energy. Regardless of the number of dishes you have, don’t load more than the dishwasher can handle.

Cramming large loads restricts the water spray patterns, which prevents proper cleaning of the dishes. As a result, you have to rewash the dishes. This not only leads to time wastage, but it also wastes a lot of water.

Paying attention to the filters

Many people will clean the other parts of the dishwasher but fail to pay attention to the filters. Dishwashers have filters located near the bottom or under the lower spray arm.

Inspect the filters and clean them if dirty. Clean the filter by shaking it out over a trashcan then rinse it under a sink.

If there are holes or other forms of damage to the filter, cleaning it won’t be of much value—you have to replace it. Replacing the filter not only ensures that the unit can catch the debris; it also protects the dishwasher’s pump and motor seals from damage.

Inspecting the spray arms

Do you live in an area with hard water? Chances are that plenty of minerals have built-up around the spinning parts of the washer. To clean the spray arms, use a pipe cleaner around the holes. If a lot of minerals have built-up in the arms, soak the arms in vinegar.

Be cautious when moving the arms as they aren’t meant to be removed easily. The arms are hard to remove requiring you to use force. This puts them at the risk of getting damaged.

During the cleaning, you might find problems with them. To fix the issues, ask appliance repair Fairfax professionals to look into them.

For you to get the most from the repair professional, ensure he/she is experienced enough on dishwasher repairs. The professional should also be certified to work in your local area.

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Get Your Refrigerator Running Efficiently

appliance repair

Fridges work hard to help keep your perishables cool. Due to their effort, they utilize lots of electricity and, through time they’re able to take a beating. The good thing is that there are many things you can do to assist your refrigerator striving less and operate as economically as possible.

Consider an Energy Star appliance repair that is certified, in case you are looking for a new fridge. There are several to choose from plus it will ensure you get off on the foot that is right.

The placement of your fridge in your kitchen issues more than you might think. If at all possible, don’t place beside the stove. Warmth that hails from your oven or range make it work harder than required to not maintain warm and can affect your refrigerator.

Refrigerator Repair Company

The circles on the rear or beneath the refrigerator want air flow to prevent warmth that is trapped. Ensure your fridge is a couple of inches away from the wall. Also, don’t utilize the top as storage. By maintaining the top clear of knickknacks, boxes of food, dishes, and other things, there may be nothing to obstruct extra heat from escaping.

Retain them clear, as well as giving the space that is circles. Pull your fridge out and vacuum the circles. Dirt and lint that collects on and about these circles means than is perfect, the compressor must work harder and less efficiently. The circles should be washed twice per year, for those who have an integrated fridge including Viking, Sub-Zero or Monogram.

Outdated doorway seals are being replaced by yet another factor. Over time, they do wear-out, allowing seepage of hot air in and cool air out. Seek out any visible signs of wear. When pulling it out analyze the seals by measuring the opposition and closing the door on a dollar bill. Or call a professional to check on the seals for you personally.

Probably the most obvious approaches to help keep your appliance running at best efficiency is to keep it closed. Consider everything you would like before it opens instead of exploring and standing. Do it as swiftly as you possibly can, when you load your grocery stores. When you’re preparing meals, instead of closing your refrigerator always and opening, pull out as many ingredients as you can at once.

Enable it cool-down a tiny before setting food that is prepared into your fridge. No need to abandon it out for unsafe periods of time. The key will be to avoid putting in which will make your appliance work extra-hard to cool the meals piping hot food.

Producing your refrigerator repair va as easy and effective operating as potential is not unimportant for your appliance as well as for your pocket book. Utilizing these tips decrease the wear in your device, keep the food fresh for so long as possible, and will aid your electrical bill.

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Don’t Forget to Schedule AC Maintenance

ac repair company

When your house heating and cooling program needs repair, you could be enticed to jump to the yellow pages or the web and just start calling ac repair company, picking the very first one that says they may be there today! Sadly, this method while you’re because your air conditioner or furnace desires fix under stress of selecting a contractor may be a recipe for catastrophe for you the homeowner.

How to avoid AC Repair?

To avoid the unnecessary expense, it is important that you promptly seek out fix services as soon as you start to experience issues! In order to prevent such problems, alternatively, only have your AC unit and be pro active examined annually by a specialist before use. Recall, needing to pay for fixes that are more damaging and investing several dollars today to make fixing is significantly more cost-effective then continuing to use your AC device that is damaged.

In fact, several businesses and fix services that deal in air conditioning fix will quote rockbottom prices. The great news is that these companies also have educated professionals who can offer you top quality and cost-effective fixes and upgrades that can really save you money with time. These businesses are aware that you aren’t produced of cash and they may go out of their way in helping you extend the life of your ac maintenance without billing you exorbitant prices.

Air conditioning fix and the ever growing mercury levels stays listed in your approaching jobs but it keeps getting delayed due to some reason or the other! This thought of getting your chilling equipment repaired may possibly often irritate you. But for those who have some knowledge then you can repair the problems of your air conditioner to a point. In order to accomplish that, you have to firstly all, identify the situation. Next thing to do is to keep an eye out for remedy that is right.

If you are selecting an HVAC contractor there are a lot more important questions to have answered than simply when you’re able to be here! I’m not ignoring the very fact that that’s an important factor especially if you are hot or cold because your ac or furnace need to be repaired, but it can wind up costing you a ton of cash, stress and aggravation in the long run.

In the event you get that your latest air conditioners is not great anymore, air conditioning repair could be required. There are various items that could trigger the issues in your air conditioner. Later, should you not understand what to do and avoid to make several errors; there are several easy and simple steps before you contact the help from AC repair professional that you may consider.

AC maintenance

Furthermore, you still be allowed in case you happen to be guarantee that one can do that factor, to create your AC gear fixes by yourself. However, you nonetheless have got to obey a few steps that were easy and simple to keep away from errors that would be broken your air conditioning program. Doing an air conditioning fix isn’t too challenging to do if you you understand well concerning the therapy.

The other point that can intensely limit the air movement is filthy filters and channels. Find the filter and remove it and substitute it with a one that is clear. This really is another easy part of your fixing you could do by yourself and charges very little for air duct cleaning. If everything looks clean, check the channels that are physical to insure they’re affiliated and all clear.

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How to preserve your peace of mind and get the best in terms of clean surroundings?


Maintaining greenery around your house?

If you wish to get the best out of your personal garden or wish to develop a natural heaven in the vicinity of your house, you should keep in mind to maintain your garden and take necessary steps to beautify your surrounding by planning an exhaustive makeover of your personal green space.

In the modern era, it is important to take care of our green surrounding so that they can grow and provide maximum green cover around. This calls for extensive planning and taking necessary steps so as to maintain gardens around your home close by. Maintaining a garden can appear to be a great task but can be simplified if one takes the services of professional companies which are well equipped with modern equipment and techniques for tree trimming and other complementary services.

Tree pruning and trimming

Trees require regular maintenance so as to take care of unwanted weeds and excessive growth which turns a tree into a horrible looking structure. Timely and regular tree pruning services ensure that a person’s garden remain beautiful round the year and make sure to take care of the aestheticism attached with the open greens.

The professional companies that offer gardening and landscaping services for your gardens also ensure that your homes stay connected with roads round the year with the help of snow removal services even in the case of excessive snowfall which obstruct transportation facilities in a city after heavy snowfall. A snow removal company is swift in its work and ensure you do not have to worry about the accumulated snow in front of your house or in your garden and you just enjoy the snowfall with your family. Companies like these offering a host of services, help a person in times of dire needs where he feels stuck due to the lack of expertise and equipment making it hard for him to lead a normal life. So in a way they are serving the humanity at times when one can be tensed about the normal course of one’s life.

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Heating units need maintenance for efficiency of energy


Heat pumps are highly energy efficient

Heat pumps are quite energy efficient due to the fact that they actually do not have to generate the heat which they circulate instead they gather it from outside and pumps it into the rooms during cold winter days. The energy which is consumed is for the act of transferring the heat from outside to the inside. For this reason they require almost 25% less energy than a heating unit powered by gas. That is why they are called energy efficient heat pump.

Central heating unit is the one that has got a single unit of operation powered by gases or electricity and situated at a central position called mechanical room (in big buildings) or furnace room (in domestic cases) from which heat is distributed to different places of requirement by means of piping. These are heavy and expensive equipments so central heating unit repair is not everybody’s cup of tea. It can and must be done through highly skilled professionals who have got years of experience at their disposal.

When you need maintenance of your heating unit?

Simply speaking gas heating units are the heating equipments power by gases. Such machines are comparatively easier to get serviced however they are riskier due to the combustible nature of their source of energy. Therefore when it comes to gas heating unit repair it should be given to the hands that have been performing the task again and again for years.

A heating machine of any kind whatsoever is composed of different stuffs and also powered by different types of energy. Now irrespective of the stuff it is made up of or the source of energy that it is using, with the passage of time its performance gradually declines. It also starts consuming energy which is more than usual. Sometimes it also fails and stops for the time being. If any or more than one symptoms are shown by your heating unit then you should realize that the time for some maintenance job has come and you need to consult a heating replacement contractor for this purpose. But make sure to get an authorized and reputed one at any cost.

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Understanding the importance of regular maintenance of your AC

ac repair

Why is it necessary?

Long use of AC’s cause damage to your appliance. It is necessary for you to do a complete AC tune up so that you do not encounter problems in the near future. It is always better to get your appliance checked up than to later call an appliance repair company to fix it. Rusting, oiling and battery replacement are the basic components that have to be taken care periodically to ensure smooth running of your machines. If you undertake a check-up periodically, your AC will last longer and you will get first -hand information about the health of your machine.

Repairing components of your AC after it breakdowns is an expensive affair. Hence it is necessary to identify it at root level and repair it or change it. Air condition maintenance is not expensive at all. You can guarantee safety of all your HVAC equipment like AC’s or new home AC insulations by covering them with a maintenance plan.

What components are inspected during an AC tune up?

During a routine inspection, care is taken to examine all the exterior and interior parts of the AC. Oiling and lubrication are done for proper motor functions. Here is a list of some of them:

  • To get your system running at peak efficiency, the pressure of the coolant is regulated and the levels are checked. If there are any leaks in the coolant, they are plugged immediately.
  • To increase the comfort level of the customer and give him easy control, the thermostats are re-calibrated. They also monitor the cycles and temperature.
  • All the wirings and terminals are checked for loose connections. If any, they are repaired immediately.
  • Usually the evaporator coil and the condenser drain get clogged with dust. During AC maintenance, these components are cleaned.
  • The fan motors of the compressor are checked. Rust will decrease the efficiency of the compressor. Hence, these components are oiled properly.
  • The compressor amps are noted when the compressor starts.
  • Along with monitoring all these aspects of the AC, additional safety measures are checked.

A report is submitted after the check-up and detailed information is given to the customer regarding the health of the various components of the air conditioner.

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How to Take Care of your Commercial AC Systems

AC Repair

Repairing and Maintaining Commercial AC systems

The air conditioning demand in the commercial sector is far more as compared to that of domestic. Further, the money and energy consumption for commercial needs can also be significantly more. The energy efficient system in commercial use can make life easier for the commercial needs. The idea is to reduce the energy consumption by maintaining the temperature not lower than 24 degrees. This will also help in saving money. The commercial AC repair and replacement  can be a daunting task. Not only the staffs of the commercial organization are tested, but also the AC experts find it a real difficult task mainly because of the AC duck work.

Why AC tune-up is a good idea:

AC tune-up is a great idea for boosting the performance of your system. The overall air conditioning maintenance also covers the AC tune-up process. The tune-up process, not only boosts the performance, but also makes the AC system, energy efficient and very economical on your pocket. If you are not sure about whether you need to tune-up your AC, then the following points would assure you the benefits of the process:

  • Ac tune-up helps you save substantial money.
  • It also enables the costly AC system to last for a long time.
  • The overall performance and efficiency of the AC system is also considerably improved.
  • It also considerably reduces the chances of breaking down of the expensive AC system.
  • Proper tune-up also ensures yours and your family’s safety.
  • It also ensures comfort in your house or at your workplace wherever you are looking to tune-up the AC.

The AC duct work is the main thing to be tuned up to the standards. It is recommended to have a regular HVAC tune up at least once every year. Doing it twice every year would be highly effective and beneficial. The AC experts performs the tune-up process by checking the coolant levels and its pressure first. Then they calibrate the thermostat and check and maintain the temperature. The evaporator coil, the condenser drain and the motor is also inspected thoroughly to ensure fine performance.

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What are the most effective kinds of grease traps?

drain repairs

Grease Interceptors

Are you looking for a way to keep your drain system clog-free?  If you frequently experience clogged sinks or clogged drains, your problems may be in part due to excess waste going through your drainpipes.  For example, many people pour grease, oil and other cooking waste into their sink instead of disposing of it properly.  This only helps to block up your drain system by making it difficult for water to pass easily through.  Keeping a drain snake on hand at home will help to alleviate minor drain problems, but sometimes you just need to place a call to a professional drain cleaning contractor.

Drain Cleaning

The best way to prevent waste from entering your plumbing system is to install a series of grease traps in your home.  Grease interceptors catch all the grease, oil and other unwanted debris from entering your pipes!  A simple grease trap installation service can potentially save you dozens of headaches resulting from inexplicably clogged sewers or drains.  We highly recommend polyethylene grease interceptors as the most effective preventative drain maintenance tool out there!  Be sure to hire a local professional drain contractor to perform the most accurate grease trap sizing services possible.

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