Washing Machine Water Damage: Causes and Solutions

You might be surprised how often that washing machines are the cause of significant water damage to a home. Understanding how you can prevent this kind of damage from happening to you is the purpose of this post. Here you will get the information about the common causes of water damage from your washing machine, and also some of the ways that you can prevent these things from happening in the future.

How Do Washing Machines Cause Water Damage?

Supply Hose Malfunctions

This makes up more than half of the water damage claims where the washing machine is the culprit. There are numerous ways that this can be to blame. For starters, this could just be installed improperly. You might also find that these hoses are susceptible to cracks when being taken on and off (to replace with a new machine, for example). A simple pinching of the hose during its initial installation could cause a leak later down the road from the development of a weak point in the hose itself.

Drainage Issues

Improper installation of the draining system (either the hose leading out from the machine or the drain itself) can also be big culprits in costly water damage. Considering that this might not even specifically be a malfunction of the washing machine itself, it is important to understand the need for a fully functioning drainage system from your house that isn’t allowed to become gummed up and eventually back up into your house.

Internal Leaks

While this is often the least common cause of water damage associated with washing machines, it is common enough that it is worth listing. Sometimes parts inside of the machine itself can be jarred loose, causing the bowl to improperly drain or to literally pour out onto the floor if the internal damage is bad enough.

How Can You Prevent This Damage?

Preventing these problems is actually fairly simple. Consider these few things that you can do to prevent water damage from your washing machine.

  • For the supply hose, a visual inspection on a regular basis can prevent a small problem turning into a big one. Feel for wetness along the length of each hose, and see if there are signs of water coming from either end of its connections.
  • The drainage of the machine is simple enough (usually) to be self-explanatory. Your primary concern here is to ensure that the drain leading away from your home remains clear of clogs and debris to allow the washing machine to drain freely.
  • Lastly, you need to ensure that you are not overloading your washing machine. Excessive loads will cause rumbling and the overworking of your entire machine. This will eventually jar parts loose and could lead to cracks in the bowl that are impossible to repair cheaply.

Now that you have a general idea of what could happen, and more importantly how to prevent it, the only thing left now is to go check it out for yourself. Make the time in your life to do some preventative maintenance to the appliances and piping in your home. This can save you thousands in the long run just for a little bit of your time and money now. The better prepared you are for what could happen, the less likely that it will be devastating if or when it does.

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How to Spot a Good Water Damage Restoration Company

While it is never a great thing to have to seek out the experience of a water restoration company, sometimes you might find that you need them. With so many options to choose from just in your area alone, how will you ever be able to determine which one is the right choice for you? Here are a few quality tips that can help you to make the best decision when it comes to finding a good restoration company.

Professionalism

When you have to make that first phone call, you want to know that someone is going to be there to answer it and to take what you are saying seriously. You need them to talk you through what they can do and when they can do it. Professionalism is something that extends into every single branch of what this company can do (or can’t do) for you. From the moment you begin a dialogue with a staff member of the company you are contacting, you are getting a first-hand account of their level of professionalism. It is important that you don’t base your decision entirely on this particular consideration, though, as even the most professional of companies might not have the strongest of reputations or the most reliability when it comes to handling your current situation promptly.

Expedience

It is important to know that the company you have selected is going to show up when they say they will and get the job done quickly. There is no denying that the longer your water disaster is left uncared for, the more damage that it will inevitably do. Having a company or service that can help you to diagnose your problem and get rid of your water quickly and efficiently is a mark of a company worth remembering. Ideally you will want a service that will come to you any time of the day or night, 365 days a year. Even if the one you choose doesn’t keep a 24 hr. schedule, it is still just as important that they are ready and willing to be there as soon as they possibly can on the next business day.

Reputable

Sometimes the best way to spot a good water restoration company is to do a little bit of research. While the internet might be a wealth of information, sometimes the best (and realest) insight that you can get will come from your friends, neighbors and co-workers. If they have had a water disaster in the past several years, who came to help clean up the mess? Did they do a good job? Would they call them in the future if anything should happen again? Once you have answers like this, you will see which companies went above and beyond to do the very best jobs for their clients and restored their homes to a pre-damaged state quickly and professionally. AdvantaClean is an example of reputable water damage restoration company in Dallas area.

Established

You want to find a company that is licensed and insured. You never know what might go wrong in the effort of restoring homes after water damages, and that is a safeguard to offer you some peace of mind throughout the process. A licensed and insured company has also likely seen far more work than uninsured smaller outfits, meaning that you will likely get an estimation that is accurate and work that is efficient and thorough.

Efficient

Take a look online for reviews, ratings and customer comments on various websites. You are primarily looking for real users, specifically those with before and after pictures. You want to know that the company you might be considering has seen the kind of damage that you need taken care of, and can handle that workload in a fast manner.

Once you have brought all of these considerations together, you can compare them to any and all companies that you might be considering right now. While there seemingly are several choices you could make when disaster strikes, once they have been evaluated using these tips, you will find that only one or two clear choices remain. Then it becomes a matter of who can get to restoring your home most quickly.

How to Soundproof a Room from Traffic Noise

Anyone who lives within a town understands the pain of being rudely interrupted by traffic noise, especially when we want to rest. Fortunately, we have prepared a list showing ways to soundproof your house from such noise.

Block entry points

The first step to preventing any noise is by finding the entry points and blocking them. This may include any crevices which might be on the wall or any other places. If that does not work, it is time to take other steps shown below.

Sound absorption material

Install materials which absorb the noise that penetrates your walls such as acoustic. These include panels and quilted curtains. They are quite easy to install and can be customized to your preference. They are cheap as you can easily make them yourself by covering a piece of wood frame with stretching fabric and then smear egg foam underneath which absorbs the sound. Acoustic panels have the benefit of not only sound proofing your home, but they also create heat.

Install a book shelf

BookshelfYes, I just said book shelves. Sound absorption materials work efficiently but what if you cannot afford it? Book shelves are a good alternative. Furthermore, they only add class to your home. You can put them to good use, by placing them on the wall from which most traffic noise tends to come in. They act as a good sound barrier and you will experience less noise than before. Apart from that, your house gets to be more organized as you now have a library.

Work on the windows

Ordinary window panes are the least efficient in preventing noise entry. Reason being they consist of only a single glass. That is the reason why if your window is on the side of the street you will definitely be a victim of traffic noise. Luckily for you, there is something that you can do to rectify that and get your peace of mind.

There are plenty of soundproof windows in the market today which include acoustic ones. You can use these to keep the noise out. Or you can use foam plugs which you can easily find at any hardware. They are easy to install and are cheap. However, it is important you know that they are not a long term solution as they only block partial noise.

Foam plugs are a good alternative which you can put to use as you work on another solution. Another window alternative is to use double or even triple panes. They have the effect of trapping the noise in between so it does not reach your room.

Other methods you can use to soundproof a room include:

  • Use of hardwood doors
  • Install door sweeps
  • Sound barrier materials such as plush rugs
Kitchen Countertop

DIY Kitchen Countertop Ideas

You do not have to live with a guilty conscious of ugly countertops when you can easily improve them. Doing it yourself not only gets your kitchen to look nice but also gives you satisfaction as you create it just the way you visualized it. We all know how expensive a makeover can be, but with our list of DIY ideas below you can achieve that beautiful countertop look quickly and at the same time cut the cost.

Painting

PaintWhenever one walks into the kitchen, they first look at the counter tops. If you want to change them but you are on a budget and cannot afford then painting is a good alternative. All you need is paint and a brush. Transform the color, and that changes everything.

For instance, if your countertops were dull, painting them with a much brighter color makes the entire kitchen look new and better. All it costs you is buying the paint. However, you need to find another solution as this is not so permanent.

Lamination

We all envy our friends whose countertops are from expensive materials. Fortunately, you can also get that sleek through modern lamination materials. It is the cheapest and easiest counter top idea. For instance, you can laminate the tops with Formica which mimics granite patterns. One can never tell the difference unless they touch it. You are also not limited as there are plenty of colors which you can select from to suit your kitchen décor. During installation ensure the material fits well to prevent uneven surfaces, and if it gets confusing, there are plenty of tutorials online which you can use to assist you.

Wooden doors

Doors? Yes, doors! How does that even work? Well here is how, it is straightforward since most of the times, it is always together and all you have to do is take the measurements of your countertop and reduce the size of your door to equal it. Then place it on your counter top and nail it there. Since it’s wooden, it is suitable as it is stain resistant and creates a vintage look. It is also unique. Or you can always use overlaying wood instead of the door.

Contact paper

Though it’s not a long-term solution, It is an easy DIY idea to transform your kitchen. Take your countertop measurements to know the length it requires. All you need for a tool is a firm hand, and you will easily change and upgrade your kitchen outlook. There are plenty of colors to select from.

Concrete

Last but not least, is concrete. It is cheap and much more durable. It will take you about a week to complete, but it is definitely worth it. The concrete look is quite easy to accomplish, but you can use another hand, so it’s advisable you hire someone to assist. Contrary to other durable counter tops such as granite one’s, concrete tops are cheaper and compatible with bright kitchen décor.

Couple in Kitchen

Best Flooring Materials for Kitchen

Due to heat and frequent visits to the kitchen, its floor tends to be vulnerable. I’m sure frequent renovations are no one’s cup of tea. If it could be possible we all wish things would last forever. However since that is not the case, the best option is to use materials that will at least serve us for a long time and which require minimal maintenance. That is why we put together a list with some of the best and resilient kitchens flooring materials.

Hard Wood

HardwoodNothing screams durability like a hardwood floor such as bamboo, eucalyptus or any other type of wood. Apart from that it never goes out of style as it creates that vintage look and requires low maintenance. It provides stability for your floor as it is moisture resistant hence you need not worry about dampness which is a common kitchen characteristic. When you cook, you often find yourself creating a mess which includes pouring of liquids such as tea and gravy.

With a wooden floor, you need not worry as it is usually stain-resistant and easy to clean. There are also a variety of choices to select from. Due to its color, it creates a welcoming and warm feeling thus sitting on that kitchen chair while taking your coffee and reminiscing can never feel awkward.

Vinyl flooring

If you cannot afford a hardwood kitchen floor, then vinyl is a good alternative. Apart from being pocket-friendly, there are plenty of colors and styles to select from thus you need not worry about standing out. Vinyl flooring perfectly fits someone who frequently cooks. Reason being it is softer hence does not create pressure on your feet when you stand on it for long periods while the kitchen. It is easy to maintain and clean.

This type of flooring is also waterproof. If you have the tendency of dropping and breaking utensils accidentally, then this is the best flooring material for you. Like previously indicated it is soft, hence minimizes the breakage. However, you need to be careful with it as you can easily slip and fall when it is wet.

Cork flooring

Another material which is suitable for your kitchen floor is cork. The fact that it is from trees might leave you wondering what the difference between it and wood is. Well, cork is from tree barks and as you would expect with something that gets to be harvested after eight to ten years it is quite durable. It is much softer in contrast to wood and is environmental friendly. With this floor, you need not worry about slipping as it is naturally textured and waterproof. There are myriads of colors and designs to select from. When you install the floor in your kitchen, changes in humidity and temperature should be the least of your worries as it is moisture resistant. However, it requires constant maintenance.

Porcelain material

We all hate going to the kitchen barefooted due to the cold floor. However, with porcelain flooring, you are more than free to do so since it retains heat. If you like being simple but sophisticated, then porcelain flooring material will work for you. It has many advantages such as low maintenance costs. Porcelain is stain resistant hence you need not worry about accidental spills while cooking or going about kitchen activities. It gives your floor a natural stone look and prevents you from falling. It also does not fade and is thicker than ordinary ceramic tiles thus it is more durable.

Woman Fresh Air

Natural Ways to Make Your Home Smell Good

For any person who owns and abides in a home, stuffiness and bad smell is an everyday ordeal. It comes about due to many reasons. There are many ways to deal with it including air fresheners and conditioners. However, we all want something more long-lasting and cheaper while not harming our own health. There is no better way to make your home smell good than using natural methods. We will discuss some simple ways which you can implement right away.

It not only saves you money but also creates a unique ambiance. Furthermore, the smell of our house is the only thing we have tied to us when we leave for our daily activities in the morning so let’s work together to make it better. Below are ways you can achieve that.

Ensure proper airflow

Stuffiness and bad smells in a room come about when there is too much stagnant air. Therefore the first step that you should take to make your house smell good, is to ensure that there is sufficient ventilation. Apart from your ventilation, also leave your windows to make sure that the bad air leaves and new gets in. That way you will not only make your house smell good, but also you will be breathing in clean and fresh air.

Essential oil

Essential OilIf you want your home to feel naturally better, make essential oil your buddy. Just in case you are wondering what that is, vanilla and lavender extracts are good examples. Put a full cup of these extracts into your oven for one hour. Or simply blob a few drops into a cold light bulb and turn on your lights. When they burn they emit their beautiful smell which leaves your house with a lovely natural fragrance. The light bulb method is much more efficient as you can do so for different rooms using different essential oils. That way they create one strong natural fragrance. Quite simple huh!

Make your own air spray

Nothing ever beats homemade stuff or something that you have done yourself. Ditch the commercial air fresheners today and create your own unique and natural one. Apart from making lemonade and being a flu cure, you can also use lemons to make your house smell naturally better. It’s as easy as one plus one is to two since all you need is half a cup blended lemon juice, two cups of hot water and an eighth of baking soda. Mix them and add them to your spray bottle. From there all you have to do is spray the mixture and say hello to a natural and better-smelling house. Replacing or mixing the lemons with an essential oil such as lavender will be even better.

Houseplants

OrchidEver wondered why so many offices and homes have house plants? Well apart from decoration purpose, they also create fresh and natural air. Plants such as eucalyptus are famous for their strong scent. Other plants which are suitable for that purpose include azalea, Chinese evergreen, spider plant and many others. With them, all you got to do is put them in a vase and wait for that beautiful smell.

Beeswax Candles and simmering

Another DIY and easy way is by use of candles made out of bee wax. Once you light them, they emit honey scented flames which are not only romantic but makes your home smell good. That is quite easy. Another method to consider is simmering natural ingredients such as cinnamon and lemons. That way their scent comes out stronger than any ever. Only put them together in a cooking dish, add water and simmer on low heat. Leave them there, and through that, you will have achieved a wonderful, exceptional and natural smell.

Other efficient ways to do so include:

  • Salt lamps
  • Reed and natural extracts diffusers

How do you keep your place smell nice?