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DIY Plumbing Project: Building a Slow Drip Line

While irrigation sprinkler systems can save you the time and effort needed to maintain your garden or landscaping, Champs Houston Plumbing experts say that a slow drip line offers a more economical alternative.  Unlike water sprinkler systems that can end up consuming a lot of water, a slow drip line supplies the water directly to the plant roots, minimizing evaporation and water loss.  It is also said to reduce weed problems and fungal plant diseases.  In this post, Champs Dallas Plumbing experts teach you how you can build a slow drip line for your garden using inexpensive materials available at most home improvement stores.

  1. Plot the area where the slow drip line will be installed.  Vegetable gardens, landscape plantings and flowerbeds are ideal areas for putting in a slow drip line.
  2. Unless you are planning to set aside an outdoor faucet solely for the purpose of your slow drip line supply, attach a Y-shaped valve hosepipe connector to the outdoor nozzle.
  3. Design the layout of your slow drip line depending on the way that your plants are arranged.  Draw a rough sketch indicating the position of specific plants you want to irrigate as well as their exact distance from each other.  In a slow drip line, each plant will be assigned a sprinkler of its own.  Certain plants that require more water should get two sprinklers.
  4. Purchase and gather all of the materials required to assemble and install your drip system.  You will be needing a battery-operated timer capable of regulating automated watering times, a pressure regulator or a backflow valve to prevent damage to your household plumbing.  Hose adapters could make it easier for you to make connections but these are largely optional.
  5. Assemble the slow drip line by connecting the parts in the following sequence: Y-shaped pipe, timer, pressure regulator, hose adapter, garden hosepipe, and hose-thread adapter.
  6. If you already have an existing sprinkler system installed, you can convert it into a drip irrigation system by plugging all of the spray heads on a circuit except one on which you will be connecting a drip circuit.

Securing Your Apartment with an Alarm System

Many people these days choose apartment living.  Whether you are renting or buying your own apartment, you will probably be fairly concerned about your apartment’s security. One sure way to protect your family and all your precious belongings would be to install a dependable home or apartment alarm system. One way renters or homeowners safeguard their valuables and family is to use an easy to install wireless alarm system and burglar proof locks.

Photo By: G & A Sattler

The First Step — Secure Locks

Before renting an apartment, the smartest thing to do is to make sure all locks are secure. You have to check whether all locks have been replaced and that you have a brand new key. Property managers or owners don’t usually bother to do this unless you request them to do so. A quicker option for your safety then is to handle this yourself and make sure you get new locks and keys for every area of your new home.

The Second Step — A Security System

The next important safety measure is to install an apartment security system. In the past, most security companies would refuse to install security systems for tenants. This is due to problems encountered with the property owner since there is usually a need to do some hardwiring and drilling into the walls in order to complete the installation. Today’s modern technology, however, will allow you to purchase wireless systems that are compact and easy to install. No drilling or wire  installation is necessary.  There are some drawbacks to these type of systems; notably they will usually only reach a certain distance and there can be interference if others nearby are using a similar system. If you opt for a wireless system, do thorough research before making your purchase so that you can be sure what you are buying will work well in your situation.

If you happen to be the do-it- yourself type, you will find that there are so many systems out there in the market that you can install yourself. You may search for them online or go to your local home improvement shops.

When it comes to keeping your family and your belongings safe and secure, just go back to the basics to make sure you maximize the benefits of having a security system. Always keep your windows and doors locked and make sure the alarm system is always on. If not, there should be someone designated to turn it on at a particular time every day. Alternatively, you can opt for one that is turned on automatically either whenever you leave the property or via some kind of timer.

Securing your home properly before you leave it, or at night before going to bed, may take a couple of minutes of your time everyday but it will be all worth it to keep your family and property safe.

Solar Garden Lighting: Its Good Points and Shortcomings

Solar garden light usually produces low voltage landscape lighting. Voltage comes in 12-22 volts. This has been the top pick of home designers because of its features. Solar garden lighting uses the energy of the sun to convert it to light. It does not need electricity to work and it is long-lasting. Particular features in the home or garden that you want to highlight lend themselves well to this type of lighting.

Pros to Installing Solar Lighting

  • Garden solar lights are eco-friendly. They pull energy from sunlight to provide illumination. They don’t contain mercury that could cause poisoning when levels are high. They don’t emit carbon dioxide that destroys the ozone layer.
  • They are safe. Solar lights are generally very easily mounted and you do  not need an electrician to assemble them. This saves money both in labor costs and with your electric bills. There is no danger of electric shock.
  • They are durable and long lasting. Many consumers claimed that their solar garden lights worked up to ten years. They require fewer repairs because the materials are quality-made. There is less hassle because bulbs don’t need to be replaced every month.
  • Photo By: Seth Anderson

    Cons to Installing Solar Lighting

  • Purchasing a solar garden system can be quite pricey although more recently prices are beginning to drop considerably. Although the installation and functioning of the system is free, electric lights are cheaper to buy initially. The savings with solar lighting are seen once the installation is complete and the lights are functioning.
  • You have to be careful where you position the solar lights, those placed in the wrong situation will not get recharged unless they are able to receive energy from the sun. The solar panels must be pointed directly at the sun to have adequate energy for illumination.
  • Without sunlight, they won’t work at all.  Periods of bad weather such as electrical storms, snow storms, very cloudy or foggy days will affect the picking up of sunlight by the solar panels. These days, most of the  larger sets of solar lights do come with backup batteries to offset times when poor weather will make the regular use of solar lighting and recharging impossible.
  • There are many advantages to opting for solar lighting. If you cannot convert your entire home to solar energy, at least using solar lights in the garden will help cut down your electricity usage and will be better for the environment.

    When is the Best Time to Employ a Surveillance System?

    With the modern technologies and manufacturing methods in use today, just about anyone can employ a reliable and effective video surveillance system for a fraction of what the same features would have cost just a few years ago.  The range of options and features have also evolved to include some of the most impressive, including motion-activated recording and light-gathering lenses that collect and amplify ambient light.

    Protecting the Public

    One of the most important times to utilize a video surveillance system is when the public is involved, as large groups of people, or numbers of people passing through a particular area over time can lead to a variety of issues from crime to liability issues, and while these are useful for both, the fact that they are present and visible is often all that is needed to ensure the peaceful and acceptable behavior of the crowds.

    Guarding Businesses

    Video surveillance has been a critical tool in reducing and combating crime in business locations, and while many do employ sophisticated wireless video surveillance system packages with zoom and panning abilities, the CCTV surveillance system is the most popular option for most applications.  CCTV, or Closed-Circuit Television, is one of the simplest, and therefore cheapest, video alternatives there is.  These merely consist of cameras feeding their signals to an on-site recording device, typically in a 24-hour loop, where the data can be retrieved or overwritten as needed.

    Home Security

    Photo By: John M. P. Knox

    Protecting one’s home and valuables with a surveillance system is also now much easier, thanks to the new technologies and computer-controlled electronics, and for around $500, a typical wireless surveillance system can be purchased with features like night-vision and tilt and pan cameras for perimeter protection, and just as with many other applications, the presence of these outdoor cameras are often enough to make most would-be criminals reconsider a specific property.  There are much more elaborate systems available, but these can quickly approach their relative worth in gold scrap, depending on the number of components and features.

    If you live in an area where burglaries and break-ins are somewhat commonplace you will find that it is definitely beneficial to employ good home security measures. Oftentimes the mere fact that you have secured your home will be a deterrent to would-be burglars.  It is proven that burglars and robbers target easy prospects and, unless they are specifically breaking in for a pre-designated purpose, they will avoid homes that look too well secured. In the event that your home is broken into or you suspect that trespassers are coming onto your property, they are invaluable in being able to detect and eventually find and prosecute those who are gaining illegal entrance to your property.

    Another measure some home owners implement is that of placing fake security cameras around their property. Of course these are quite a bit cheaper and while they may not help you actually catch someone committing a theft or other crime, they too can be a great deterrent for the casual burglar who is casing the neighborhood.

    A Couple More Questions To Help You Redesign A Home Theater System

    Redoing your home theater system doesn’t have to be difficult, especially if you have a flat screen television. By purchasing an LCD wall mount you can get your flat screen out of the large entertainment cabinet that is taking up all of your floor space and get it mounted onto the wall, providing an incredibly updated look for your home theater. You will want to ask yourself a few key questions to determine which type of mount is right for your situation, before you begin the project.

    Question #1: How Heavy Is Your Flat Screen Television? – Depending on how heavy your flat screen television is, you may have more work cut out for you when it comes to mounting it. If you have a smaller television it is going to be very easy to get it mounted onto the wall, and vice versa with larger televisions.

    Question #2: During Construction, What Materials Were Used To Build Your House? – When your house was built, what materials were used to construct it? If the builders used concrete, or bricks, you are going to have to use heavier duty mounting anchors to hang the television, which can take up a lot more time.

    Question #3: Which Style Of Mounting Angle Do You Want? – If you want the television hanging from the ceiling, there’s an arm mount for that. Want it hanging out from the wall in angles that can be repositioned? There’s also a mounting bracket for that!

    Question #4: Are You Going To Hide The Wires Inside The Wall? – If you are going to want to make sure that the wires cannot be seen you will need to plan for making the necessary holes in the wall before you start the project, so you can determine where the studs in the wall are at, and how you are going to create the outlet for them.

    Types of Driveway Alarm Systems

    Driveway alarm systems are usually used at businesses. You would normally see them at locally owned gas stations and drive throughs. However this same driveway monitoring system can be used at homes as part of a home security system. Here are the different types of driveway monitoring systems that can be used at home according to Consumer Product Reviews.

    The Magnetometer is one such driveway alarm system. This alarm will only alert you when someone has driven a vehicle past its sensors. It is based on magnetic technology and is made to detect only large metal objects. So this alarm doesn’t pick up other movements which is a drawback of this type of alarm. The magnetometer is available as both wired and wireless driveway alarm system but the wireless one is better, especially if the driveway is long and you have to have the cable laid for long distances if you used a wired system.

    Pneumatic Alarm is another type of driveway alert system. This alert system goes off if someone or something over a certain weight limit depresses the alarm. It can be used to alert you about both cars and humans but will not be falsely set off by small animals because they do not surpass the weight limit. This is a better option than the previous Magnetometer as a home security device.

    The third type of driveway alarm is the wireless motion detector. This monitor can be used to cover more than just your driveway entrance to your property. It can be used to protect all your entryways and walkways, or even your entire yard if needed. All in all this type of system is very beneficial if you have small children and will alert you when someone enters your yard without permission.

    Use these security products to secure your driveway and in turn your home and increase your home security.

    Contemporary Designs and Ideas for your Bathroom

    There is more to bathrooms today than meets the eye. What used to be known as a room with a bath has become a full bathroom where different fixtures have been added. There are four main plumbing fixtures in traditional and modern bathrooms. These are the sink, bathtub, shower, and toilet. Aside from these four elements, you are free to experiment on whatever you want with your bathroom.

    Sometimes, the problem is on how to get things started. Sometimes you can get stuck on what design to use. You may have an illusion on having a grand bathroom but you do not have the budget for it. Or you may want to have it edgy and modern but you do not know how to go about it. There are things you can do to make your bathroom makeover worth the time and money.

    It all starts with the budget. Once you have decided to have a bathroom makeover, you will need to think about how much money you have. This will tell you about your limitations. However, you should not minimize the quality of your makeover just because you are short of budget. There are economic ways of pursuing your dream bathroom. All you need is enough time to look around and canvass stores for high quality, yet affordable, materials and fixtures.

    If you want a contemporary design, there are many examples you can find online or in magazines. It will also be helpful if you can hire someone who knows about interior decoration. If this is not within your budget, you can always work on the design yourself. All you need is imagination to reinvent what you have seen.

    The next step is to look for materials. This can sometimes be the tricky part since not all people are aware about which ones to buy. For example, there are different types of bathroom tiles and there are different types of materials for the bathroom vanities.

    However, there are those that are made of better quality than others. The best thing to do is to consult an expert on this subject. If your concern is about the pipes, for example, then you should talk to a plumber about what to do.

    In closing, here are some choices of unusual, yet not expensive sinks and other bathroom items that you may want to consider having installed.

    Above Counter Vessel Bathroom Sink in Blue Glass with Water Drop Design

    Above Counter Vessel Bathroom Sink in Blue Glass with Water Drop Design

    The beauty of this glass vessel sink is matched only by the functionality. It is scratch-resistant, tempered for strength and comes with a limited lifetime warranty. Designed as a functional work of art and work with a variety of bases to add new style to your bath.

    Town Square 24 In. Pedestal Bathroom Sink With 8 In. Faucet Spacing, Bone Finish

    Town Square 24 In. Pedestal Bathroom Sink With 8 In. Faucet Spacing, Bone Finish

    Town Square is the ultimate in mix and match. With over 20 coordinated pieces that fit together, the Town Square collection gives you a stress-free way to turn your master bath into a masterpiece. Its a system for making you more comfortable with your design.

    Victorian Single Hole 1-Handle High Arc Bathroom Faucet in Chrome

    Victorian Single Hole 1-Handle High Arc Bathroom Faucet in Chrome

    The bold Victorian Bath Collection adds an element of disctinction to any bath. Featuring a new single-hole faucet, numerous shower configurations, as well as a variety of stylish finishes, this beautiful collection provides modern-day comforts with timeless charm. Delta faucets complement you, your style, your life, the way you think, work and move throughout the day. Getting ready in the morning is far from routine when you’re surrounded by a room – and in the company of a faucet – that reflects your personal style. Let Delta help bring your individuality to life.

    Choosing the Best Couches for Your Living Room

    Any home owner will tell you that choosing the best couches for the living room can be quite a challenge in itself. We all know that couches and sofas are the focal point of any living room, meaning it is the first thing that a guest notices and the one that will contribute greatly toward the first impression of your home. So it is only natural that home owners must choose not only the best looking couch but also the one that will complement his or her home and blend in flawlessly. But of course, we don’t want them to only look good, they need to be comfortable to sit on too. So we are guaranteed an enjoyable time while we spend our time in the living room with our loved ones.

    Photo By: House Of Sims

    So how do you choose the best couch for your home? One of the first things that you have to consider is the space of your living room so you can pick the right size of sofa type that would fit in it. If the lack of space is a concern then you might want to try a corner sofa group since they can be placed nicely against the walls. Or if that is not an option, then you can go with a 2 seater sofa. If space is not an issue on the other hand, a full sofa suite or a Chesterfield sofa comes highly recommended if you are going for a classy grand look. Another factor to consider when choosing the best couch is the upholstered material of the cover. There are many types that you can choose from like leather, microfiber, suede, wool, and many more. If you have the appropriate budget then it is best to choose a leather couch. The reason is that while it can indeed be expensive, a leather couch is much more long lasting than any other type of couch. Not to mention that they are far better looking and would be a great addition to any living room.

    With such a wide selection of couches out there, it can indeed be an overwhelming task to choose the best one for your home. But do not let that get to you, as long as you know what you want and what is best for your home then you will surely find that perfect couch. For more information about the best couches in the market, the internet is a good resource for your inquiries.  Here are some possible choices that you can shop for online:

    Patio Furniture, Belle Isle Collection Sofa

    Patio Furniture, Belle Isle Collection Sofa

    With its sophisticated styling gracing your patio or porch, this Martha Stewart Living Belle Isle Collection Sofa invites you to relax on its plush, fiberfill cushions. The sofa’s heavy-duty steel and aluminum construction is wrapped with an all-weather resin weave for strength and durability. This 3-person sofa features red cushions and 4 toss pillows that are weather resistant for longevity.

    The Best Measure of Safety: Pool Pumps

    When it comes to maintaining a safe, clean and healthy swimming pool, there are a lot of things that you need. The keys to a clean swimming pool are two things: filtration and circulation. If you are able to provide the best of these two worlds to come into play in your swimming pool, then you can rest assured that your pool will be spic and span, and also safe for other people to swim in. Great pool pumps are absolutely necessary for these keys to become a reality. The pool pump is the one responsible for the water’s movement inside the pool and without it, the pool water will become very difficult, if not impossible to clean.

    Above ground pool pumps or in ground pool pumps is an absolutely must have for any pool system. Installing one of these two to your specific pool will give your pool the boost it needs in cleaning and maintaining your pool water. These pool pumps act like a heart that pumps all the water to a specific area in the pool where the filters are located. A good pool pump will be able to reach every drop of water and make it pass by the filters inside your pool. If you have a good pool system installed, then all you have to do is to regularly check up on the equipment if they are working properly, and to regularly clean out the filters when they get dirty.

    Pool pumps are necessary to keeping your pool clean. There is just no getting ways around it. If you want your pool to be safe for your friends to swim in, then investing on a great pool pump system is mandatory. But don’t fret, you will feel that the rewards are worth every penny you shed out. Invest in one now!

    Freezerless Refrigerator With Ice Maker For Your Party

    Are you planning to conduct a party? Well, it would be very busy for sure. This is true if you are hosting a party for teenagers or young adults. So, let’s get down to business right away. What else do you need? You already have the foods to be served. You have also bought the necessary home designs to make your house more appealing. You have also the music and sound system. You have also settled the program and the invites. Now, when you think you have already finished everything, you better stand up since you have not yet finalized what to do with the beverages. Again, you will be serving teens, and so this will not be forgotten.

    Photo By: Pittaya Sroilong

    Therefore, you have to order a lot of bottle drinks now. You can also prepare hard drinks or ladies drinks for young adults. Well, if you are serving too many of them, you cannot afford to place all these bottled drinks in a regular sized fridge. You might also run out of ice since there are too many of them. Well, if this seems to be a big problem, one solution would put an end to all that. This is the freezerless refrigerator with ice maker. Yes, you’ve heard it right.

    It can solve your first problem on the space since this fridge tends to have a bigger space compared to the usual fridges due to the absence of the freezer. Therefore, even if you need to refrigerate a lot of bottles, it would not be a big deal. Its ice maker is also enough to suffice the need for the entire night. It can produce ice cubes or even crushed ice in an instant.

    In short, with this investment, you actually hit two birds in one stone.

    Well, your problems are almost over. Now, just when you think you need to spruce up your floor, why not buy large area rugs?

    Where do I look for Shed Plans?

    I have been wanting to put a shed in my back yard for years.  The possibility of clearing out some garage space so I can fit the extra car in is very appealing.  I have been acquiring stuff for many years and I have decided that it is time to have another place to put it.  But, where do I look for ideas and where do I find my shed plans?  I asked myself that about 6 months ago and the search began.  I found there are really two places you can go: your home improvement warehouse or through an internet search.

    Photo By: jessicafm

    I first went to my local home improvement warehouse to get inspired.  The smell of wood and the glimmer of shiny new tools are enough to get anyone in to the DIY mood and I am no exception.  I talked to a few workers and told them what my plans were.  I told them what I wanted to build and asked if they could provide me with some shed plans as an example to get me started.  They did more than that.  They took me over to the book section and showed me a whole variety of shed plans and shed styles.  Who knew I could have a shed fancy enough for lace curtains or one big enough to hold an entire workshop.  I was very pleased with my first stop and picked up a few books of shed plans on my way out the door.

    The second search I did was online and my results were more scattered.  Until I found the same book I have just purchased also for sale on amazon I had all but given up.  In the end I was glad I started by going to a home improvement store for inspiration.  While there is noting like a bit of instant information, I will gladly take the smell of wood and glimmer of tools over an internet search any day.

    Simple Advice on Carpet Shopping

    It is very easy to change the look of your house by changing the carpet in one or more rooms.  A new carpet can give an entirely different feel to a space.  Depending on whether you go for patterns or plain, bright bold colors or pastels, you can create whatever look you like.  Changing your furniture and other soft furnishings can cost a fortune by the time you have tied everything together, but simply replacing the carpet can have an astonishing effect on a room.  Go for whatever time period you want.  Give your room a Georgian feel or a Victorian flavor.  Perhaps you want a minimalistic effect or a beach-side look.  Whatever you choose, make sure that you get your carpet pricing strategy straight in your mind before shopping.

    Are you bothered about how long your carpet will last?  If you are the kind of person who rings the changes every 2 or 3 years then you will not be worried about the quality of the carpet and will probably not be purchasing something like Axminster.  However if this new carpet is going to have to last for the next 10 years then you will certainly be looking at paying between $2 and $5 dollars a square yard.

    Where you are laying your carpet is also an important factor to consider.  If it is in the hallway then you need to be sure that it is very durable and can stand up to some serious usage. If looking outside, consider the quick and easy outdoor carpet tiles.  If however it is a bedroom carpet you are buying then you can afford to go for the cheaper end of the range with something like a Brussels carpet which is priced at between $1 and $1.50.

    The final thing you need to consider is where you are going to shop for this carpet.  Shopping online is great if it is difficult for you to get to the stores during opening hours. But if you prefer a hands-on approach, then you will probably prefer to buy face to face.  Whichever you choose, don’t forget to keep your carpet pricing strategy fixed firmly in your head to avoid making costly mistakes. Always remember also that when shopping online either for the best outdoor carpet or traditional rolled carpet, the weight of such items and high shipping costs for such items.

    Effective Mold and Mildew Removal

    Appropriate mold and mildew removal in the home is very important especially if there are children and pregnant women in the home. This is because mold has some severe health risks for pregnant women, children and the elderly. Mold can also be a lot more dangerous than usual to those with some kind of respiratory condition like asthma. All such people can be severely affected by mold and it can produce some dire consequences. This is why mold infestation must be regarded as a very serious problem and the people should be saved from the infestation in every way possible. If the infestation is over an area of ten square feet or less, you can take care of the infestation on your own but if it is any more than that then it means the problem is severe and only professionals should be able to handle it. This is the problem with mold removal in home – you need to make it an urgent problem to ensure that every one in the home is safe from the common side effects and reactions. Mold can also be the cause of certain allergic reactions and every one pretty much reacts to mold in a different way – this is why it might be a little difficult to detect at times – there is no one symptom for mold infestation in the home.

    Mold can seem quite harmless but actually can it severely ruin a lot of things. Most items that mold attacks are not always saved by the removal of the mold. Especially porous items of all kinds like tiles, wooden items and other similar items might be ruined by mold to a very severe extent and would needed to be thrown out in most cases. This is because mold can get into the deep crevices of these objects and no matter what mold removal product you use or how you try to get it out, these things cannot be salvaged. Even if you keep the stained item, it might have mold re-growth because it won’t be properly destroyed. There are special kinds of removers and black mold removal products for toxic black mold but no mold clean up should be attempted without making use of the right kind of protective gear. This gear should include a few basic items like a respirator, gloves, out wear and protective eye gear. The outer wear should be any old outfit that can be discarded and taken off easily. The protective eye wear should have a hole for ventilation in it so there is no chance of fogging and deterring visibility but it should protect you from mold spores in the air. The gloves should be as long as possible, reaching to at least the forearms and the material will depend on the kind of cleaning solvent you are using. The respirator should be a standard N 95 respirator.

    You can conduct mold and mildew removal on your own if you have the right mold removal products.

    A Couple Different Types of Unique Toilets

    For the most part, toilets are a subject that people tend to avoid. Most do not put a great deal of time and effort in deciding a particular style of toilet, but rather try to find something quite quickly. After all, they are mostly functional devices, and most feel free to settle for the standard white commode. Even new home builders tend to cut corners when it comes to the toilet, spending thousands of dollars to make a dream bathroom, but keeping a white model in the corner that is identical one found in every other home.

    However, there are many different options for those that want to take the time to design their bathroom. With toilets available to satisfy the needs of different consumers, one should take the time to find one that suits their bathroom. For those with unusual spaces, corner toilets and wall hung toilets can be a great solution.

    A corner toilet is exactly what is sounds like – a toilet that is made to fit in the corner. The general design is a bit more triangular than the standard model, with the tank meant to fit in to the corner. Round and elongated bowls are available for the toilet, so comfort tends to be the same as with any other model. For many bathroom designs, however, it can be a major space saver.

    Even less common in the home is the wall hung toilet, which actually features an in-wall tank and a suspended toilet. These are extreme space savers, easy to clean up and quieter than most normal models. However, installation almost always must be done by a professional, and the price of the unit is quite directly related to its advantages.

    Before you install your next toilet, take some time to think about the models on the market. Look around, take in the options, and make a choice. You may be happier for your time spent.

    Decorating With A Stair Basket

    Stairs are a part of the home that is functional, but that can also be a tool for decorating the home.  Most stairs are wide enough so that they can be decorated along the edges safely.  The stairs act like a shelf on which items like a stair basket can be displayed.

    A stair basket can simply be used for decoration, or it can  be filled with items.  Stair baskets are usually shaped to conform around a step, often in an upside down ‘L’ shape.  A leather stair basket is an attractive way to add beauty to the home.  The leather should be in a color that complements the other decorating themes of the house or at least the room.  A leather step basket looks pretty and high class.  Guests will enjoy admiring the basket as they walk up or past the stairs.  One can add more decorative charm to the step basket by filling it with flowers or similar items.

    One does not have to buy a basket that is made for stairs in particular. Any basket that will fit on the steps can  be turned into a stair basket.  The basket should be small enough so that it does not act as a tripping hazard for those going up and down the stairs.  One can choose a basket with a  handle or a cover if they wish.  A basket with a cover is advantageous because it can serve as a storage piece without looking cluttered.  Many step baskets will be decorated on the outside in someway, whether it be with a fancy weave, added decorations, or painted.

    A basket that fits nicely on the stairs is a tool that one can use to create both form and function on their staircase.  Attractive and useful baskets are great for almost any home decorating scheme.

    A Look at the Ikea Billy Boockase and Expedit

    When a buying a bookcase, there are a lot of  things to consider. The size, the shape and color are just among the details that you must take into account. And here’s the good news. Ikea has the largest and most distinct collection of bookcases where you can select the one that you really like.

    Currently, Ikea’s best selling bookcase is the Expedit. The Expedit has an extraordinary design which may seem like a 4 by 4 structure with 16 different  sections for your storage. The four shelves are segregated into four distinct sections which will  be easy for you to categorize your stuff. Moreover, because of its grid-like design, you don’t have to be bothered with an extensive bookshelves.

    Another amazing  feature of the Expedit bookcase is that it can hold heavy items  even up to six pounds. With this,  you can store more items in the bookcase without worrying of its weight. This is another advantage of an Expedit bookcase over the other  bookcases.

    The Expedit bookcase is designed to be placed against the wall with the enclosed wall fasteners. But if you plan on moving out frequently, this kind of bookcase is not advisable. The Expedit bookcase is priced  at $200, so it is  a great value for your money, taking into consideration its unique design and weight capacity.

    The Expedit bookcase is very large which measures five feet in width. For people who require a lot of storage space, this is an excellent choice. On the contrary, if you don’t need a bookcase that is very large, you may opt for a different design  such as the Billy bookcase. This particular bookcase has a more conventional feature with six shelves that  have no divisions.

    As a matter of fact, the Billy bookcase is the most well-liked Ikea bookcase because of  its typical design. And if you  need a bookcase that does not take up so much space, then the Ikea Billy bookcase is ideal in size at around three feet wide and six feet tall.

    The mentioned bookcases are just two  among the many products of Ikea. For more selections, you can always look for their online catalogs available from the many retail stores. Although you would want to buy an Ikea bookcase, you can still make your purchase from other stores that carry the Ikea line of products. More often than not, these stores sell Ikea products at a lesser price compared to the manufacturers store.

    Buy Sheet Music, Pink Flannel Sheets and More Online

    Although everything a person could want and inquire about can be found online, many people still prefer to go to the store to purchase what they need. Some people are uncomfortable with making monetary transactions online while others are still not sure how to go about it. There are so many scams that people who did not grow up with the internet still learning to use it.

    Most businesses are using the internet to hire prospective employees and to market their product. Business to business correspondence and transactions also take place online. Unusual purchases are available on the web as well. A consumer can buy sheet music or pink flannel sheets if that is their desire. This route beats driving to five different stores looking for that specific purchase.

    Even people who use the internet on a daily basis are still uneasy about doing their banking this way. All major and most smaller banks provide access to customer accounting via their website. To protect customers, most banks have their sites encrypted to keep hackers at bay. Those who want music can go to specific music websites or make their purchase through a site comparable with Amazon. They can buy sheet music, individual songs, whole cd’s, or find lyrics.

    Home decorating is another story however, more information is needed to ensure that the correct product is purchased. Pink flannel sheets, for instance would be a little more difficult to find. Then there is the issue of size. Window dimensions would have to be provided for drapes and curtains, and size for clothing. When they arrive, most times the size or dimensions are correct, but there are other times when they have to be sent back for a correction. Eventually, consumers may be required to purchase certain items online. Interstate and international purchases are already made using this method, but will some stores become obsolete?

    Tips for How to Season and Store Firewood Properly

    It is important to know that freshly chopped firewood is especially moist, sometimes having a water content as high as 50%. This moist wood, known as “green” firewood, will not burn properly and can even lead to a creosote buildup that can lead to devastating chimney fires. To burn safely, firewood must be seasoned. This is process takes some time but is not difficult, and the basic steps to season your wood are listed here.

    Chopping your firewood: The standard length of firewood is between 16-18 inches which is the perfect size for most wood stoves and fireplaces. The diameter should be between 6-8 inches to facilitate a good fire.

    Storing your firewood: Green firewood has to season for a few months before you can use it. You want it to dry out, so don’t stack it on the ground in a random fashion  You don’t want to stack it on the ground, as it will constantly soak up the ground’s natural moisture and will stay perpetually wet.  A good firewood storage rack will raise the firewood off the ground enough so that ground moisture is not an issue.  It will also enable you to cross stack the firewood for proper ventilation.  A good firewood rack cover will protect your firewood from rain and moisture, and this is clearly an important step in keeping your firewood dry.

    The time it takes to properly season your firewood in a firewood holder varies according to the type of wood. Soft woods, such as pine take around 6 months to season while hard woods such as oak take up to a year to dry out. The time of the year in which the wood was originally felled also has an effect on the seasoning. Wood cut in winter will always have a lower moisture content than that felled in summer so winter wood may be ready a few months earlier than wood felled in the summer.

    Help Choosing a Juicing Appliance to Buy

    Do you know what sort of juicer is best for you? Perhaps you have read a number of juicer reviews. This is certainly a good way to gather information about these kitchen appliances.

    In fact, most people know that consuming a number of fruits and vegetables every day is a good thing for our health. Using a juicer is a good way to increase the number of portions we have per day. For example it is easy to drink a refreshing orange juice with breakfast and then possibly make another fruit and vegetable drink later in the day. This helps to provide our body with a host of different vitamins and minerals.

    There are a few points to think about when looking out for a new juicing appliance. Since there are completely different styles available, which type is best suited to your needs?

    The way to work out which machine you should go for is to think about what sort of produce you want to turn in to a refreshing drink. If you would like to make orange juice, then a citrus juicer may be just what you are looking for. Where as for people who want to create their own green vegetable drinks, perhaps a masticating machine would be best. This is because this style of machine can squeeze out a great deal of liquid from leafy green vegetables like spinach for example.

    Then if you would like a great all round machine then perhaps you will choose to buy a Breville BJE200XL juicing appliance. This is a centrifugal juicer and can handle anything you choose to put into it. The benefits to this style of juicer is its versatility and also easy of use. Not only that, when you have finished juicing, it is easy to clean up which makes it very user friendly.

    How to Maintain Solar Lights

    Maintaining solar yard lights is a reasonably easy and worry-free proposition. Once you have your grand set-up of solar lights and lamps installed and ready for use, just bask in the eye-candy for a couple of nights.  Then, however, start thinking about how you need to go about taking care of them.

    First, after a good rain, it’s a good idea to give the exposed lights a quick checking-over. While almost all are made of water-proof material and are supposed to be water-tight, there are exceptions. Also, during drier periods, make it a point to periodically clean excess dust/soot off of the light enclosure, and especially the solar panel covering.

    If you notice that one of them is not working at night, do not be quick to throw it away.  It could be something as simple as a defective battery, or possibly one that did not absorb enough sunlight. As a matter of fact, never throw them away—even if they are dead beyond repair. This is especially true of the battery—by throwing it away, you are causing more damage to the environment than you are saving it.

    Thorough cleaning

    A few times a year, a more thorough cleaning is recommended. Refer to the instruction manual (if you have not lost it, that is). In the event you did misplace it, here are some universal steps that apply to nearly every solar light/lamp:

    • Disassemble the light—this is typically done via taking out screws or just twisting certain parts.
    • Take the batteries out (if they come out). If they don’t, you will need to clean around the edges with a slightly damp cloth—and never, ever put the fixture in water before removing the batteries and all circuitry.
    • If the battery comes out, make sure the battery, its contact leads, and the leads attached to the light fixture are free from oxidation (which typically is a grayish, flaky substance). If you find any, very gently scrub it off using a small, soft brush.
    • Clean the non-electrical parts with warm, soapy water to cleanse it of bugs and dirt, dry with a soft cloth, and let the open parts sit-out to dry even more before returning them to their place in the garden or lawn.