BEHIND THE FLASHLIGHT

Tips for Home Winterization

Home Winterization Made Simple When cold weather is on its way and you find yourself wanting to crank up your thermostat, it’s time to start thinking about all the little things that can add up to much larger bills. Getting a jumpstart on preparation is the key, so...

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How to determine kitchen design layout

Kitchen Design Most kitchen layouts start from the concept of a “work triangle” between the sink, refrigerator, and cooking surface. For an efficient work triangle, follow these guidelines: No leg of the triangle should be less than 4 ft. or greater than 9 ft. The...

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Discovering mold indoors raises major concerns

Mold is Everywhere Mold spores are found both indoors and outdoors. Mold spores cannot be eliminated from indoor environments. Some mold spores will be found floating through the air and on settled dust; however, they will not grow if moisture is not present. Why Be...

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Water heater burn marks

Burn marks are a BIG warning sign. If there are burn marks on the bottom of your water heater, you could usually have one, if not more, possible problems. (Burn marks are usually only on gas or propane water heaters)   Issue: Unit is not venting properly Improper...

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Kickout Flashing

Kickout flashing, also known as diverter flashing, is a special type of flashing that diverts rainwater away from the cladding and into the gutter. When installed properly, they provide excellent protection against the penetration of water into the building envelope....

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Chimney flue and combustible materials

Interior Single-Wall Metal Chimneys Our inspectors look for exposed interior single-wall metal chimneys that are not continuously enclosed where they extend through closets, storage areas, or habitable spaces, or where the surface of a chimney could come into contact...

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Electrical overcurrent wiring issues in main panel

Circuit breakers straddle the hot bus bars, and if there’s an overload on the branch circuit—the affected circuit trips and automatically stops the flow of electricity to that branch in your home.  Breakers also serve as the starting points for the electricity which...

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Why you should not use accordion drain pipe

I see flexible accordion drain pipe in use frequently. I look at these with questions since most home improvement stores have them. Why sell it if you aren’t supposed to use it? They are intended to be used as a temporary solution. The major problem accordion pipe has...

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NEVER mess with the structure of your home.

If your home was built with manufactured roof trusses you should never cut or damage them. If the need for modifications is crucial for renovations or repairs you should consult with a licensed structural engineer. Although you may have a recommendation or design plan...

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Common Roofing Errors

Common Roofing Errors Common Roofing Errors Details that matter on asphalt shingle roofs By Mark Parlee, Journal of Light Construction I was recently called to consult on an Iowa home that had extensive roof leaks into the finished space. According to the homeowner,...

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Causes of Cracked Grout

It is disappointing. It is frustrating. You see your carefully applied grout begin to crack or even start to chip off and fall to the ground. What causes cracked grout and what can you do about it? Causes of Cracked Grout There are several possible reasons why your...

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Anti-Tip Range Bracket to Keep You Safe

Anti-Tip Brackets for Ranges Anti-tip brackets are metal devices designed to prevent freestanding ranges from tipping. They are normally attached to one of the rear legs of the range or screwed into the wall behind the range, and are included in all installation kits....

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Proper Venting of Gas-Fueled Appliances

Gas furnace ventilation issues can be dangerous to homeowners! Gas Venting Basics Most homeowners are aware of the need for chimney cleaning and inspection if they own a wood-burning stove or regularly use their fireplace, but many don't realize that a gas heating...

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