Home and Garden

Impact Resistant Materials – Concrete Masonry

Winds up to 145 miles per hour left thousands homeless after Hurricane Charley tore through Punta Gorda and surrounding cities in Southwest Florida.

This vicious storm claimed 17 lives and has estimated damages in the billions. In and around Punta Gorda, trailers lay toppled or blown apart. Shards of wood and metal lay scattered on lawns.

As tragic as this loss is, it could have been much worse if it were not for the residential building code changes that were instituted after Hurricane Andrew in 1992. Andrew, the most destructive U.S. hurricane on record, blasted its way across south Florida, causing 24 deaths and $26.5 billion in damage -mostly due to high winds.

The magnitude of damage caused by Hurricane Andrew was unprecedented in the United States. Prior to it, there had been a 25-year lull in significant hurricane activity along the Atlantic and Gulf coasts, and building codes were not adequate to limit the loss of life and property experienced in Hurricane Andrew.

Today, codes have been strengthened and are being more rigorously enforced. Designers are required to provide a continuous load path to ensure structural integrity and provisions for wind-borne debris are much more stringent.

“Because of Hurricane Andrew and other storms in this area, the residential building codes have become much more specific in Florida,” said Dennis Graber, professional engineer and director of technical publications at the National Concrete Masonry Association. “By conforming to these codes, houses were better able to withstand the onslaught of Hurricane Charley.” The National Hurricane Center notes that building codes reflect the lessons experts have learned from past catastrophes and suggest that homeowners in hurricane areas contact local building code officials to find out which requirements are necessary for home improvement projects.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency encourages construction with strong, impact-resistant materials, such as concrete masonry, within homes and other structures located in hurricane-prone areas.

The Benefits of Concrete Paint

Have you ever experienced the unsightly appearance of worn concrete? Often, after a short period of time concrete can become marked with hairline cracks, dimples, and rust stains. The solution to this problem may lie in concrete paint.

Covering your driveway, basement, or patio in concrete paint is a quick and easy way to not only preserve the expensive investment you have made, but to aesthetically enhance your property. In addition, concrete paint can be acquired relatively cheaply; it is much easier to run a coat or two of paint over a piece of concrete than to have to pay laborers to remove your broken concrete with noisy jackhammers, to haul it away, and to pour a new slab in its place.

But the enhancements one can make to concrete do not stop simply with paint. For example, texture and patterns could also be utilized. It is possible to mark off sections of the concrete and create geometric patterns, swirls, checkerboard patterns, or even circles using a template.

Is your concrete outside? Is it slippery when it gets wet? Try mixing in a little sand with your concrete paint. The sand will add much needed traction to the surface and prevent slipping. Think about it. A bag of sand is much cheaper than an expensive hospital bill for a broken hip.

If you decide on painting your floor, make sure you properly prepare it before you apply the concrete paint. Make sure there is no standing water and remove any dampness with a large fan. This may take awhile, as concrete can retain a huge amount of moisture. Next, you should thoroughly clean the floor. Remove any grease or oil, as it will prevent the paint from properly adhering. Vacuum the floor several times and then go over it with a tack cloth, which can be found at any hardware store. Now you’re ready to begin painting and, soon, you’ll be enjoying all of the benefits of a new floor and a new look.

Kitchen Countertops

Getting The Right Bicycle Seat

It takes only one ride on the wrong bicycle seat to demonstrate irrefutably that a good bicycle seat is paramount to regular bicycle riding.Even the shortest, smoothest ride can be painful and joyless if your bicycle has a bad seat on it.

What differentiates a good seat from a bad seat?It will differ between any two people, and it will differ especially between men and women.Our anatomies in the lower torso are made for strikingly different purposes, and it’s pretty safe to venture that none of them include bike riding!Truth be told, the perfect bicycle seat has not yet been marketed.There are, however, some seats that are markedly better than others.

The biggest mistake made by occasional riders, particularly the elderly, is to opt for a bicycle seat that is bigger and better cushioned.Stop right there.Bigger seats are the wrong way to go, for anyone.Bigger seats increase friction and contact.All they will do is to broaden the area of your discomfort.Go for a smaller seat.The aim is to decrease the contact area between your derriere and the bicycle seat, not increase it!

As for cushioning, here you have some leeway.There are some very comfortable, stream-lined bicycle seats out there now, especially those made with the bumps of mountain bike riding in mind, or for the hybrid bicycles so popular with urban riders.Here, you can combine a svelte seat with some very nice and unobtrusive cushioning that will be positioned right where you need it: under your right and left buttocks’ contact points.There is absolutely no good reason to have cushioning under your entire derriere.

Today, there are a lot of bicycle seat designs intended to account for the anatomical differences in men and women.The most important is that the flare of a woman’s seat is just a little bit wider to allow those contact points and their cushioning to hit where a woman’s anatomy requires it, but there are also bicycle seats made with various openings in the middle to decrease painful prolonged contact with male or female genitalia.

Whatever you decide might be a good option for you, try out a bicycle seat before committing to purchase.Shop at a good bike shop.Their employees know a lot and most will allow you to return it if you need to take it home to try it on your own bike. You really can’t know if it’s right unless you try it.

Visit http://balancebuddy.info/ for more information about bicycling.

Why you should Consider an Organic Latex Pillow

There are thousands of pillows on the market today, but organic latex pillows are a step above the rest. An organic latex pillow is not only eco-friendly, it is also among the best ways to ensure that you get a pillow that fits your unique needs. When it comes to pillows, most people believe that it’s a “one size fits all” scenario, but nothing could be further from the truth. A properly crafted pillow can often eliminate those aches and pains that are all too common in the morning.

As an example, if you require a specific height and density in a pillow, just choosing one from a store shelf would be a mistake. Based on the specific requirements that you or your doctor have established, you can dictate exactly what is needed and an organic latex pillow can be specially designed for you. A few of the benefits of having a pillow specially designed for you are;

  • More prolonged periods of REM sleep
  • Less stiffness and joint pain in the morning
  • An altogether better attitude after having a truly restful night’s sleep

At Sleep Made To Measure you will find not only contour pillows that are customized to align your head and neck perfectly as you sleep as well as many other organic latex pillow designs. Whether you prefer a contour pillow, a traditional elliptical pillow, or a travel pillow, there is a design that will suit you perfectly. There are even organic latex pillows that are designed to rest in the space between your legs to give better support and reduce movement during the night. Less tossing and turning means that you can awaken feeling refreshed and ready to meet the da.

Whatever type of pillow you prefer, Sleep Made To Measure has a product that will help you achieve the kind of restful sleep that your body needs.


The Benefits of Organic Latex Mattresses

If you’re in the market for something new and unique, if you’re lookoing for the best night’s sleep that you’ve ever had, Sleep Made to Measure has what it takes to help. From organic latex mattresses to custom made organic latex pillows, Sleep Made to Measure creates comfort in a non toxic environment for the sleeper.

If you’re looking for the best way to sleep, check us out at http://sleepmadetomeasure.com

Roofing and Roofing Shingle Tips

When you’re considering new roofing in Elmira, New York or the surrounding area, it helps immensely to know a little about roofing.

A shingle that shows 3 tabs is fittingly known as a 3-tab roofing shingle. They are normally guaranteed for 20 years and help the roof to have a smooth, defined look.

Depending on the manufacturer, 3-tab shingles are often available in 20, 25 or even 30 year limited warranties. They are generally available in a variety of colors. It is also important to note that 3-tab roofing shingles are some of the most cost-efficient shingles to use on your home.

Are 3-Tab Roofing Shingles For You?

Before deciding on 3-tab roofing shingles for your home, check with your local homeowner’s association. In addition to certain restrictions that each association may have, some do not allow the use of 3-tab shingles. This may be true in areas that are prone to high wind or other inclement weather but check with your local building requirements to be sure.

Replacing 3-Tab Roofing Shingles

If you need to replace 3-tab roofing shingles, you can either do the job yourself or hire a professional roofing contractor such as Dewalt and Sons roofing in Corning and Elmira New York.

Whether you decide to take the job on yourself or hire a professional, make sure that whoever does the job takes the time to choose a warm, dry day.

Do not work on the roof if it is wet or slippery. Once you’re on the roof, carefully pry the tabs of the shingles upward, which overlap the damaged one. Loosen the tabs and the adhesive on the back of the shingle. Work carefully to avoid damage to the neighboring shingles.

If you lift too many tabs on good shingles, they may crack. For the shingle that you are removing, look for the nails holding it into place and remove them as well. Once the shingle is out, remove any debris from that area before placing the new shingle. With your new shingle in hand, search for the adhesive strips near the bottom of each of the 3 tabs. Slide the new shingle into place and secure it with nails. You may use roofing cement to secure the overlaying tabs.

For more information on roofing, siding, fencing and remodeling in Elmira New York and the surrounding areas, please contact Dewalt and Sons roofing.

How Much Value Does Bathroom Remodeling Add To Your Home?

Cures For The “There Is Nothing To Do ” Blues

It is a common complaint heard by parents across the globe, “there is nothing to do!”. Well now there is a better option for kids and grandkids, one that will enable them to get some exercise and enjoy being outdoors for a change. Investing in a fibreglass swimming pool will have the bored youth spending time splashing and playing in the water. Better yet, the diy fibreglass pool will be a good project for all the family to do, because it involves many ways for them to become emotionally involved, from the design and landscaping to the digging out space and building the necessary paths and walkways to go around the pool area.

But first of all, before a spade touches the ground, the best plan starts with the answers to questions about in ground fibreglass pools. This is one of the best places to find answers: myfibreglasspooleasy.com.au. Here is the place for ideas, types of pools, information about supplies and ideas for landscaping and design to fit your pool area and make it attractive to everyone. Pools increase the value and desirability of a home. If you like to entertain and have social gatherings, the place with a pool is often very popular. This will again alleviate the cries of those who claim there is nothing to do when obviously, there is quite a bit to do. The health benefits along with the fun aspects playing in the safe waters of a pool will be worth it long after the pool goes into your yard and the first lap is completed.

5 essential tips to enhance your bathroom feng shui

The bathroom is often the most difficult room in your home to decorate. Achieving feng shui for a bathroom can be even more difficult. Typically energy is lost in this room so it is essential to work to bring a positive energy flow into this area. To determine how the energy flows into the bathroom (or any room), imagine how water would flow through the room if it were pouring through the door. This type of energy is generally called chi and there are several inexpensive things you can do to bring feng shui to your bathroom décor. From the toilets to tapware, small changes can make a big difference.
Keep the Toilet Lid and Drains Closed

Chi can escape from the bathroom just as easily as water. Before leaving the room, close the shower drain and the toilet lid. This is often not as easy as it sounds, especially if you have kids, but making it a habit will prevent the escape of positive energy.
Look to your Lighting

Most bathrooms tend to lack ambiance. Bright lights, while essential for getting ready for work, offer little in the way of ambiance. Install a dimmer switch so you can have bright lights when you need them and dim them when you want to relax. Add some scented candles and bath salts to set a relaxing mood.
Add some Earth Tones

Water is the dominant element in bathrooms and adding some earth tones can help to balance the elements. Bronze colored tapware, green accents, and wood are all things that will enhance the positive energy and keep the elements of the room in sync. If possible, add some moisture loving plants into your decorating scheme.
Keep things Uniform and Organized

While everyone these days is money conscious, there are some things that are just worth the money. While it may be silly to buy the latest expensive stereo equipment if you don’t listen to music often, matching bathroom towels are a good investment if you want positive energy in your bathroom. You may not mind a rainbow of different colors, but chi does. Uniformity and tidiness promote a positive energy flow and create a more relaxing space.
Use Images that Keep Nature in Mind

When decorating, remember that the goal is to make the room an area of purification. Pictures of family or friends shouldn’t be in the bathroom, nor should things that remind you of passions or hobbies. Stick to images of nature such as seascapes or landscapes.

These are just a few ideas from https://bathroomwarehouse.com.au/ to help create a positive energy flow in what is otherwise a very utilitarian area of the home.