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3 Unusual Tips to Save Money and Increase Efficiency of Pressure Washing

Posted by on Aug 3, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 3 Unusual Tips to Save Money and Increase Efficiency of Pressure Washing

High pressure washers/cleaning equipment can be huge consumers of water and electricity, but they are needed to increase the efficacy and efficiency of the cleaning process, particularly for hard-to-reach areas and stubbornly-stained surfaces. In the spirit of improving sustainability and environmental impact mitigation, there are steps that you can take to further improve the efficiency of your pressure cleaning process, and these are discussed below. 1. Select a larger machine This may seem counter-intuitive at first glance; after all, don’t larger machines consume even more water and electricity? In making your calculations, you should not only consider the face value consumption (i.e. this washer uses X litres per hour). How long does it take for the surface to be completely cleaned using one machine versus a bigger one? Consider the water consumed for the entire time: you may find that a larger machine cleans the surface faster and therefore ends up using less water by the end. Reduction in cleaning time in turn reduces energy consumption and labour costs, and can add up to significant cost savings as well as reduce environmental impact. 2. Use a hot-water high-pressure washer Similarly, this may seem counter-intuitive given the additional energy consumption of heating large amount of water for pressure washing – this can be up to double the consumption of an identical cold-water washer. However, the reason most people turn to pressure washing is because of the tedium and inefficiency of regular low-pressure cleaning – such as stubborn stains, greasy and grimy surfaces among others. Hot water washers can effectively clean such surfaces much faster than cold water because of its ability to melt away the oil/grease instead of just pushing it away. In fact, cold-water washers need additional chemicals to bind to the dirt for removal, and this still takes longer than using hot water. Therefore, the additional consumption of a hot-water unit can pay for itself in time and labour savings. In addition, hot water/steam will sterilize the surface in addition to cleaning and will also reduce usage of detergents and abrasive chemicals depending on the surface and type of dirt. 3. Use soft water instead of hard water There are several downsides to using hard water – hard water doesn’t dissolve detergents and chemicals as well as soft water, meaning that you have to use larger amounts. Once combined with dirt, it forms sticky, unsightly scum – from calcium and magnesium deposits in the water. The runoff from such cleaning can be more harmful to the environment. In addition, hard water can leave thin spots/films as a result of calcium/magnesium deposits on the cleaned surface. Using soft water leaves surfaces much cleaner. Softening water can be done by using commercial softeners, which helps water to dissolve detergents more easily without the formation of scum. For more information, contact Jetwave Industrial Equipment or a similar...

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Concrete Cancer: What’s Next After Your Building Falls Victim to this Menace?

Posted by on Jul 11, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Concrete Cancer: What’s Next After Your Building Falls Victim to this Menace?

Concrete is certainly a reliable and strong alternative for construction. When laying the concrete, structural steel is used within it to ensure that the beams, pillars, floors and other sections of the building are strong enough to sustain the weight of the building. However, the problem is that the reinforcing steel may be exposed to contaminants like water and air, which force it to expand. Due to the expansion, the concrete around the steel starts to crack and interferes with the overall strength of the structure (concrete cancer or spalling). If not checked, the cancer can spread and affect the building adversely, necessitating intrusive and costly repairs. If your building has already fallen prey to concrete cancer, here are a few things you can do to get it back into good shape: Polymer Modified Repair One of the reasons concrete spalls is carbonation. Cement is made using limestone (calcium carbonate). When the calcium carbonate reacts with water, it gives off carbon dioxide that later forms carbonic acid. The acid eats away the structure and exposes the structural steel to rust, worsening the cancer. In such a case, polymer modified repair is used to rectify the damaged areas. The bad concrete around the steel is removed. Then the steel is cleaned until a bright metal surface is attained before coating it with a protective polymer material.  Lastly, an anti-carbonation coating is used on the area to keep the cement from further chemical reactions. Electrochemical Treatment For buildings located near coastal regions, concrete cancer can often be caused by the salty water conditions. This occurs through the process of efflorescence in which numerous crystalline deposits form on masonry structures, concrete and stucco. The crystalline deposits are white and are an easy way to tell if your structure has been attacked by concrete cancer. In this process, liquid salts penetrate into the concrete and eat it away, exposing the steel to rust. If the cancer results from efflorescence, electrochemical treatment is used to protect the steel and the structure from reacting with the salts. This can be done through cathodic protection in which more reactive, sacrificial metals are used to react with the salts, keeping the steel and the concrete safe. Water Proof Concrete Since most causes of concrete cancer rely on water to initiate the chemical reactions, going for waterproof concrete is a good alternative. This is important in places where you are certain that the concrete will be exposed to a lot of water. You can choose water proofing coats or waterproof cement to prevent any instances of concrete cancer in the...

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Choosing an anode rod for your water heater

Posted by on Mar 22, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Choosing an anode rod for your water heater

One of the most important components of your water heater is its anode. Every water heater uses an anode road to attract corrosive elements in the water to keep the tank from rusting. If you find rust in your water, or if you start experiencing leaking in your tank, these are signs that the anode rod probably has to be changed. However, in order to have your water heater functioning as well as possible, there are a few things you should consider when deciding what anode to get for it. Aluminium Aluminium is the most common material for anode rods. Aluminium anodes are popular mainly because they are relatively cheap. The main issue with them is that they’re not very durable and aluminium is the material with the lowest current which therefore will offer the lowest amount of protection. As aluminium doesn’t rust, the corrosion tends to instead build up on top of the material instead of eating away on the rod itself. This can make the rod hard to handle, particularly when you wish to replace it. Therefore, you should avoid aluminium anodes if you want to avoid having to spend a lot of time on maintenance for your water heater. Magnesium Magnesium anodes are the most protective anodes, as they produce a higher current than aluminium anodes and therefore protect the water heater against rust better than aluminium. They are also preferable as water with traces of magnesium is viewed as healthy and is therefore not dangerous to have contacting your body. The downside of magnesium anodes is that it tends to react quite strongly with substances in the water and can therefore enhance unpleasant smells that come from contaminants in the water. Magnesium anodes are also more expensive than aluminium. The price does, however, reflect the efficiency of the metal. Combination Combination anodes are quite modern, and not many water heaters come with them as original equipment. These types of anode rods are generally made with a mixture of zinc and aluminium. It doesn’t create the same current as magnesium anodes and is therefore not as effective. It does, however, have a positive effect if you’re experiencing a lot of strange smells coming from your water heater. The alloy is known to decrease the growth of bacteria in the water and thereby also decrease the unpleasant smell they might be producing. Remember that this type of anode still contains aluminium, so you might still have to consider the side effects of an aluminium anode even if you aren’t using pure aluminium.  For more information about anodes, talk to a professional like Carman...

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Tips When Mixing Sand and Compost

Posted by on Feb 22, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Tips When Mixing Sand and Compost

Gardening can be an enjoyable hobby that also improves the aesthetic appeal of your outdoor area. No matter whether you are growing vegetables or herbs in your garden, it is important that you have just the right soil. Gardening can be incredibly finicky and difficult to master due to the ranging fertility of some plants and the PH level changes. If you want to make sure that you are using the best soil possible for your garden, it can be a great idea to create your own top soil by mixing compost with sand. Before you begin mixing these two ingredients, make sure that you are aware of the most helpful tips that are designed to make the process simpler. Compost Make sure that you pick the right type of compost to mix with the sand. The type of compost that you will want to use when you are gardening should be thoroughly broken down. This means that it might be a good idea to filter the compost that you are going to use before you begin mixing it with the sand. This can be done using a mesh screen. Just make sure that the holes within the screen are large enough for only smaller particles to move through. The particles that are too large to pass through the screen should be returned to the compost pile to break down more. Sand Not only does the compost that you use need to be broken down, but it is also a good idea to use sand that does not have high amounts of lime or sodium in it. If you use sand that has lime or sodium, it will negatively impact the growth of the plants in your garden. There are types of sand that are designed specifically for horticulture use and this is the best type that you can use when trying to make your own topsoil. Mixing You will need to use a large container to mix the two ingredients. Be sure that you add the compost to the container first. Make sure that you pour enough compost into the container to cover about an inch of depth. You will then need to add about an inch of sand. Make sure that you continue to layer each ingredient until you have the container mostly filled. Once you have layered them, you can then mix the two ingredients as effectively as possible. Since you have already layered them, it should not take much effort to mix them together thoroughly. You can then add this mixture to your clay soil and have the ideal topsoil for your garden. If you’re in need of soil and sand supplies, visit a business like Freds Lagoon...

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Making a Choice between Split and Ducted Air Conditioning Systems

Posted by on Jan 26, 2016 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Making a Choice between Split and Ducted Air Conditioning Systems

When it comes to purchasing a new air conditioning system for your home, some homeowners may find the task daunting considering the myriad of options available in the market. It does not have to be so overwhelming though the first place to start would be to take note of the different categories that are available. The most common options for residences are split and ducted air conditioning systems. You then have to consider the different pros and cons that these systems offer in relation to your own personal needs and preferences. Here are some of the things to consider when making a choice between split and ducted air conditioning systems. What are split and ducted air conditioning systems?  A ducted air conditioning system is composed of a series of ducts that have been installed throughout the home. These ducts can be placed beneath flooring, in your homes ceiling or behind the walls. Split system systems, on the other hand, are either wall mounted or can be free standing on the floor. As such, they are installed in either a specific area or individual room in a home. Differences between split system and ducted air conditioning systems Discretion Ducted air conditioning systems are a discreet option. Since their duct are camouflaged behind walls and run through the roof, the ducts do not create any focal points around the home. Additionally, the control panel of these systems lies flat against the wall and resembles a security alarm or other similar panels. Split systems on the other hand are more conspicuous as the unit is installed right into the room that it is regulating the temperature. If the unit is floor standing, it can take up value floor space in smaller rooms. Zoning Ducted air conditioning systems allow homeowners to set different zones in their home. This is especially advantageous for people with larger houses. Instead of having to heat or cool the entire residence at the same time, you can ensure that the ducted system turned on only in specific rooms this also works toward towards cutting your utility costs as you will not be using up electricity to regulate temperatures in rooms that are not in use. With a split air conditioning system, you can only regulate the temperature of one designated area at a time. This does not make it a great option for larger homes as you would require multiple split systems to keep the home sufficiently heated or cooled. You also will not have the option of regulating the temperature at will in the different areas of your...

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How do you use a pontoon boat?

Posted by on Dec 31, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on How do you use a pontoon boat?

If you are going to be out on the lake or in the ocean with friends and family, you might want to use a pontoon boat. This is a type of boat that is on the flatter side, providing ample space for relaxation. They often have a platform for a raft, as well as having an area similar to a houseboat. Here are some tips for using a pontoon boat if you are not familiar with them. Become Familiar With Basic Operation Before you do anything else, make sure you are familiar with the basic operation of a pontoon boat. This means knowing what the different parts and controls are. Even if you have driven a different type of boat before, the pontoon might be a little different. There is a trim control mechanism that helps you to adjust the prop, or propeller of the boat. There is a throttle lever, one of the parts you will use the most, which changes the direction of the prop and helps you adjust your speed. Other basic controls and parts include the gauges, displays, steering wheel, radio, and horn. Be Careful When Leaving the Dock When you first leave the dock, you need to be aware of the wind speed and direction. This is something pontoon boats often struggle with the most. Start at a low speed, as the boats work well when gradually increasing the speed instead of just trying to take off. Going slow helps you to adjust to the current wind speed so you get better control of the boat. Since there aren’t logs of the boat that reach deep into the water, the boat can be slightly askew due to the wind. Keep this in mind when you pull out of the dock for the very first time. When turning the wheel, do not shift as you do. Point the drive, then shift. Operating the Boat in Open Waters Once you are out of the dock and into the water, you will feel more control of the boat. Try to start by going straight, instead of taking turns before you are comfortable controlling the boat. Gradually pick up speed, maintaining control of the boat’s power. The bow needs to level out as you control the boat. This lets you boost speed while maintaining a good amount of power. Slow down if you feel sound coming from the propeller that is like a howling sound. Wait until it goes away, then pick up speed again. This boat can’t slow down easily, so go a little slower than you think you want to go, instead of just boosting as fast as you...

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Why You Should Consider Buying Faux Wood Tiles

Posted by on Dec 2, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Why You Should Consider Buying Faux Wood Tiles

The options available to you when you want tiles have increased to include faux wood tiles. These ceramic or porcelain tiles resemble wood. This article discusses why you should choose faux wood tiles when you decide to renovate your home. They Can Be Used in High Moisture Locations Faux wood tiles would be a very good option for you if most of your house has a wooden floor, except the bathroom or kitchen. You may have originally shied away from using wood in those places because of your fear that moisture will shorten the life of that floor in those high moisture locations. You can now renovate those places and use faux wood as a flooring material. These tiles will bring uniformity to the appearance of all your floor space. You will not have to worry about water damage to this newly-installed floor. This is because the faux wood tiles cannot be easily damaged by exposure to moisture. They are Durable Hardwood floors are susceptible to scratches originating from different sources (such as pet nails and furniture legs). These blemishes can make the wood to look much older and less attractive. The beauty of faux wood tiles is that they are more resistant to being scratched. This is because the material they are made from (such as ceramic) is hard. You can therefore rest assured that the tiles will look as good as new for their entire lifetime. They Have Endless Design Possibilities Faux wood tiles can be finished in a huge variety of styles. This is made possible by the significant advances in technology. For instance, the manufacturer can give the faux wood tiles a reclaimed wood finish. This will save you from having to spend a long time looking for reclaimed wood from salvage stores. They are Affordable Any flooring contractor will tell you that hardwood flooring materials are some of the most expensive materials that you can use on your floor. Faux wood tiles offer you an affordable way to have the look and feel of wood without spending a very large sum of money during the renovation of your home. Visit a tile supplier like Tile Warehouse (Newcastle) Pty Ltd in your area to look at the different tile and flooring options that are available. You will able to find a variety that is just right for you. Alternatively, you can also explore the possibility of ordering a custom finish in case you would like to add a variation to the finishes you see...

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4 Tips to Help You Get the Most from Your Ducted Evaporative Cooling System

Posted by on Oct 30, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on 4 Tips to Help You Get the Most from Your Ducted Evaporative Cooling System

Ducted evaporative coolers are an ideal cooling option for all types of buildings. They are energy efficient, and available in a vast range of sizes, from small portable units for single rooms to large ducted systems for industrial and huge commercial buildings. The following are a few tips to help you maximize energy-efficiency and performance from your evaporative coolers: 1. Open windows Proper working of your ducted evaporative cooling unit depends on having your windows opened to the right degree. Evaporative coolers draw air from outside, cool it through the moistened pads then blow it into the room. However, there must be an opening through which warm air in the room escapes. Open one window or door just a crack in each room to allow internal warm air to escape without allowing external warm air in. Alternatively, if building a house, you can construct a ventilation grille in the ceiling or higher up the wall. Listen to your unit; if the opening is not sufficient, you’ll notice that the unit makes more noise. The window/door/ventilator to be opened should be facing away from the direction of wind, so that you can use wind direction to your advantage. 2. Adjust louvers Normal ducted evaporative cooling systems have ventilation grilles in the ceiling, which can be rotated in order to control the flow of air in a room. Just take individual blades and rotate them to maximize air flow according to the design of the space. 3. Change pads Remove the store-bought sponge pads that come with the unit since these have inferior water retention and hence cooling performance. Replace them with simple pads made from aspen wood shavings. These have higher retention rate, creating a water curtain that gives better cooling effect. They are also cheaper than the commercial sponge pads. These should be replaced once in the cooling season. 4. Window placement The location of windows in the house directly contributes to the amount of heat in the space. Having windows facing direct sun or wind increases the heat loading in the space, and hence your cooling requirements. If you’re building a house, north-facing windows are the best, followed by south, east then west. Alternatively, use external shading like verandas, pergolas, bamboo blinds and similar external features if you must have windows in a less-ideal direction. If permitted, use reflective glass or a reflective film on such windows – confirm that local regulations allows for this, especially if your window is in the sightline of a road. Thermal or heat-absorbing films are another option. 5. Miscellaneous tips Since night-air is usually cool even during the hot season, you can turn off the water pump and simply use your fans to promote air circulation like the regular ones. Close doors to rooms that aren’t used during the day to minimize the areas to be cooled. Ensure your keep your moisture pads clean, since they also act as air filters. Service your unit and the beginning and end of every cooling...

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Five Essential Items You Need to Create a Forklift Safety Zone

Posted by on Oct 7, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Five Essential Items You Need to Create a Forklift Safety Zone

If you have just purchased a forklift and are trying to ensure you have a safe area for your employees to use it in, you need a few supplies. Take a look at these interesting essentials. They will help you create a safe loading zone for your new forklift: 1. Safety Chains If you or one of your employees drive a forklift off a loading ramp or out of a door, it could easily fall to the ground, breaking the forklift itself and hurting your employee. To prevent that from happening, you want to create as many physical barriers as possible around your loading zone. With lots of money and time, you can pour concrete barriers, but to make things more simple and affordable, consider hanging heavy-gauge safety chains around the dock openings. 2. Yellow Paint To warn the rest of your employees and keep them out of your forklift area, yellow paint is essential. You can use it inside on the ground or outside on tarmac. Simply use the yellow paint to create visible borders, warning people where the forklift is going to be working. 3. Quality Pallets Typically, forklifts lift loads that are on pallets, and if your pallets are old and worn out, they may snap or break as you are trying to lift them. They can hurt your shipment as well as any people standing near by. To minimise that risk, stock your loading area with high-quality pallets in good condition. 4. Broom Debris including gravel, packing peanuts and other tiny items can destabilise the wheels of your forklift, causing it to potentially fall over and hurt both the forklift operator and bystanders. To ensure your area has a clean and safe surface, you need a broom. Ideally, you should sweep at the beginning of every day and as needed throughout the day to ensure your forklift has a clean and tidy surface for operation. 5. Wet Wipes The cleanliness of the forklift operator can also have an impact on the forklift’s safety. In particular, if your operator has greasy hands from eating a snack or from working with other machinery, that grease can make it hard for him or her to hold the forklift controls firmly. Luckily, a small packet of wet wipes are all you need. Store them near your forklift so all of your operators can remove oil and grease from their hands before getting into the forklift. Also, remind operators to check their shoes for slippery grease and wipe them off as needed. Keep these tools handy for safe forklift...

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Determining When Timber Roof Trusses Can Be Fixed Versus Replaced

Posted by on Aug 31, 2015 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Determining When Timber Roof Trusses Can Be Fixed Versus Replaced

Timber roof trusses are very strong and durable and are meant to last for decades. They are also treated to withstand dampness and insect infestation, and their natural density also provides a barrier against these damaging elements. However, this doesn’t mean that timber roof trusses are impenetrable or that they will last forever. They can suffer damage and may eventually need repair, but in some cases they should simply be replaced. Note the difference if you have timber roof trusses in your home so you can make a decision about what to do if you should notice damage. 1. Dampness, mold, mildew Whether or not a timber roof truss will need replacing versus repairing when it comes to water damage and mold or mildew will depend on the extent of the damage. If mold and mildew have gathered just on the outside of the truss, this can be scraped and cleaned and then the truss can be filled with wood putty or resin and sealed against further damage. However, if the dampness has spread to the inside of the truss, this can weaken its overall strength. While putty or resin can fill in a section that you remove because of water damage, note that these substances are not as strong as the wood itself. Typically, rods are then inserted into the inside of the truss to give it added strength, but this can be an expensive job. Note the cost of adding these rods versus simply replacing the truss when it’s been this damaged by water. 2. Insect infestation As with water damage, the extent of wood that needs to be removed and the area to be filled in will determine if a timber truss needs to be replaced after an infestation. However, what many homeowners fail to note when checking a truss for insect infestation is the entryway or access point for the insects. Termites will burrow into wood through a long tunnel before they find a spot to feed, and failing to fill in that tunnel can mean the wood will be compromised. When determining how much wood will need to be filled with a putty or resin or if the truss should be replaced after an insect infestation, you need to note the entire extent of damage and not just the area where insects have nested or began to feed. Note too that because timber trusses are treated to withstand insect infestation, this treatment or sealant may have worn off over time. You may need to sand down the outside of the truss to apply more treatment to the bare wood, and this can mean having to shave off too much of the outside. In this case, replacing the truss is the better option. For more information about your timber roof trusses, contact a professional roofing business, such as WA Timber...

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