Posts made in October, 2015

Safety measures when you’re performing your own excavation

Excavation is a big branch of the construction industry. If you’re performing any major landscaping on your property, or if you’re laying any type of new cable in your garden, you might find a need to have it excavated, as it includes both filling and digging various kinds of openings in the ground. Hiring a contractor to perform it is always the safest way to go, but if it’s not a too complicated kind of project, you can perform it yourself. You do, however, need to know how to take the proper safety precautions.

Involvement by authorities

The first thing you need to know is that you won’t be able to avoid involvement from any authorities completely. You need to know about what’s under the ground in your garden. It’s important to know exactly where all electrical cords and water pipes run; digging into them could cause destruction, but also produce large fines. You also shouldn’t try to perform excavation if it involves deep openings, or if you need to construct any particularly complicated retaining walls. If it does, you should most certainly get in touch with an expert.

Stabilise the structure and make sure it doesn’t break even after the work is done

When you perform the excavation, you should try to stabilise the cavity as you go along. Even if you’re not digging particularly deep, it can still cause you to get injured if it were to collapse. Also protect the edges of the cavity with some sort of barrier so that people around you won’t accidentally fall into the hole. Your barriers should be sturdy enough to not break if someone runs into them. Regarding the edges of the hole, you should also make sure they’re free from vegetation before you start digging. Roots penetrating the walls of the cavity could seriously destabilize the structure and also ruin your retaining walls when the excavation is done and the roots are allowed to keep growing.

Proper drainage

Make sure you’re also providing proper drainage for the excavation, and protect the work when it’s raining. Water getting in to the structure can undermine your retaining walls, especially if you’re using concrete. If the retaining walls were to crack and become porous, you will have to do all the work all over again. But what is more complicated is that you will also have to destruct any existing, malfunctioning structures. This will lead to you spending an excessive amount of money on a project you took on to save money in the first place. 

If you feel you cannot accomplish these things during excavations, it would be better and safer to involve a professional contractor. 

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Three Primer Options for Your Painting Project

If you are planning on refurbishing your home, you should consider starting a painting project. The fresh coat of paint will improve the aesthetic appeal of the interior and exterior spaces. Moreover, the layer will protect the structure of your walls from moisture, which can cause extensive damage. Ideally, you should employ a professional painter for the tasks so that you will achieve good and long-lasting results. However, if you have painting skills and the right supplies, you can carry out the project. One of the important painting supplies that you should obtain is the primer. This is the base coat, which is designed to promote adhesion and hide imperfections. Here are the main primer coating options to consider.

Oil Primer

Oil-based primers are also known as alkyds, and they are ideal for use on diverse surfaces. The material is favourable for filling pores in wall surfaces, which prevents infiltration by moisture. The product can also be used on wooden surfaces that bleed tannins. Basically, the layer will create a barrier, locking the unattractive fluids in the timber. In addition, the primer coating produces a very smooth finish without raising the grain of the pertinent surface. You should choose this primer for unfinished and weathered wood to create a base for a smooth finish. It is also perfect for repairing cracks and general imperfections on previously painted areas.

Latex Primer

Latex primers are water-based products, and they provide an ideal alternative to the alkyd primers. They are easier to handle if you are a beginner working on a DIY project. You will not need mineral spirits for dilution and clean up. The products also do not emit unfavourable fumes, and they are fast-drying. Additionally, the primer coating will allow moisture to pass through, which reduces the risk of peeling and cracking. Latex primers are perfect for use on drywall, bare softwood surfaces, galvanised metals and concrete.

Shellac-Based Primer

Shellac primers are manufactured from resins, and they require alcohol for thinning and cleaning the tools. The paint is fast-drying, so it is suitable for application on surfaces that are vulnerable to moisture damage such as metal, plaster and wood. On the other hand, the primer is pungent, so it is difficult to use.

If you are not interested in dealing with both paint and primer during your project, you should consider acquiring painting products with the two elements. The combined coating is more convenient during application and might save you some money. However, you should note that the results might not be as ideal. For more information, contact a local painting service like Allure Painting Services

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Selecting the Best Home builder

Building a new home is a huge lifetime investment for many people. Therefore, it is very important to find someone who will construct an ideal home where you can raise a family and enjoy the rest of your life.

With so many amateurs out there posing as expert home builders, it is rather challenging to find a reliable builder for your home. For that reason, here are some useful tips to increase your chances of getting an expert that you so much require to build a good home.

Ensure home building insurance is provided.

Does the builder provide home building insurance in the event that something goes totally wrong? This is a very important question that you’ll need to answer before taking a home builder. In case any damage occurs to your structure due to poor workmanship, then the builder will be legally liable for any defects.

Or perhaps, an accident like a wall falling over may happen and cause serious bodily harm to people working at the site. Without an insurance cover, the home builder may easily pass liability to you in case of any work-related accident, forcing you to pay hefty damages that may be awarded to the affected parties.

Therefore, picking a home builder who has insurance will reduce financial loses that may arise due to contractual breach.

Check whether the builder belongs to any building association.

In most cases, home-building experts are affiliated to a professional body that governs and regulates their conduct. Affiliation to a home building association may be an indication that a particular builder is compliant with the safety and quality standards stipulated in the industry.

In case of any service-related grievances, you can easily seek redress by reporting your case to the relevant building association, which sometimes has the authority to punish errant members.

Check out references provided by proud home owners.

You probably have some close friends or relatives whose homes are enviable. If these individuals live in proximity to the place where you wish to build your new home, it might be of great assistance to seek recommendations from them.

The best thing about using a builder referred to you by someone close to you is that you can be sure of proven performance. At some point, you might have been invited over in their homes and seen first-hand the quality of workmanship provided by the builders that they contracted.

If you were pleased with what you saw, then you can proceed to check out the references given to you by friends and relatives to make further inquiries.

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Reminders for Any Renovation

If you've decided to undertake a project around your house, there are a few things to remember. First, make sure to have a good idea of the cost going in. Talk to local specialists for estimates or do research on the cost of supplies and labor. Second, always make sure to take necessary safety precautions. While a landscape project may seem like a lower-risk task than a rewiring job, it never hurts to be too careful. Finally, don't bite off more than you can chew. Plan out your renovation and repair projects in detail and then tackle one thing at a time. If you ever feel out of your element, hand the job over to a contractor. They'll know how to get the job done efficiently, safely, and correctly.


October 2015
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