Carpet Cleaning and Care

Keeping your floors and carpet clean gives your house a neat and shiny look and the confidence of allowing your small kids to play there without any worries. Some fanatics would like having the floor cleaned and polished to the extent that they can see their reflection in there. However, most homeowners are happy to…

Keeping your floors and carpet clean gives your house a neat and shiny look and the confidence of allowing your small kids to play there without any worries. Some fanatics would like having the floor cleaned and polished to the extent that they can see their reflection in there. However, most homeowners are happy to clean the floor or carpet regularly, and often having it deep cleaned to give it the best look. If you are keen to keep your floors and carpets clean, it is important that you know the materials used for making them and to get familiar with the cleaning processes that would keep away most of the soil and dirt.

Hard floors are made from different materials like vinyl, wood and ceramic tiles etc. For the appropriate maintenance of hard floor, you should check with the manufacturers right at the time of its installation. Should you have difficulty in accessing the manufacturer, you can do some research and learn the best way of maintaining the flooring material in use at home. Likewise, carpets can be also made using different materials, including nylon, wool and blended cotton etc. Once again, your best source for getting the proper instructions for its maintenance is the manufacturer. If that's not possible, you may carry a swatch of carpet to a carpet cleaning company and get the needed maintenance instructions.

Preventive measures to keep your floor and carpet clean

Once you have identified the material used for making your floor or carpet, you are better prepared for its maintenance. You'll know how frequently it needs to be cleaned and the right way of doing it. In any case, do not allow any fluid to go through the carpet or flooring. When your floor is dirty, the dirt and food particles can scratch it. Therefore, vacuum your floor or carpet to remove the dirt and food particles. How often it should be vacuumed depends on the material, the type of carpet, the floor and your lifestyle. If you have kids and pets at home, you'll definitely need frequent vacuuming.

Tips for cleaning carpets

Whatever material or process you may use for cleaning, it is imperative to thoroughly rinse your carpet to ensure that no chemicals are retained in it. That is why hot water extraction cleans the carpets better that any dry method.

You may remove stains by using a shop-vac. Of course, you can not drain the blemish but you should frequently douse the affected area and draw out the solution simultaneously. This process works out better than using a cloth and water. It is important that you do not allow the stain to remain for long.

Another helpful way of keeping the carpet cleaner is to use rugs just inside and outside the main door. The rugs can gather some of the dirt carried on the shoes of visitors. But that does not mean you should reduce the frequency of cleaning. Dirt is instrumental in spoiling the fibers of your carpet. It is good to move within the house without your shoes on.

Before cleaning your carpet, you must vacuum it thoroughly. In case you opt to use a portable machine, ensure that water is very hot. The carpet should be treated quickly. You may leave it beneeth a fan to quicken the process. Frequent cleaning of the carpets at home helps reducing the frequency of getting it cleaned by professional carpet cleaning companies.

Helpful Tips on Hardwood Flooring

Installing hardwood flooring is a huge financial commitment that pays off in a big way in the long run. With that in mind, it is important to be able to take care of your new flooring to have it in top condition for as long as possible. With proper care and maintenance, it is possible…

Installing hardwood flooring is a huge financial commitment that pays off in a big way in the long run. With that in mind, it is important to be able to take care of your new flooring to have it in top condition for as long as possible. With proper care and maintenance, it is possible to have your hardwood flooring for many years; even a lifetime. Before getting into the helpful tips on hardwood flooring, it is only right to first explore why you would want to consider this kind of flooring in the first place.

Advantages of Hardwood Flooring

There are many advantages attached to hardwood floor which is why this is one of the most popular types of floor on the home renovation market today. Some of the advantages in this case include:

Maintenance: as you will soon discover, hardwood floors are very easy to clean and generally care for. The inherent properties of the wood make it resistant to dirt and stains such that they do not stick to the floor. Most of what is needed is regular vacuuming and moping with a damp cloth or mop. In addition to this, unlike carpet, wood does not fade and will retain its original color for a long time to come.

Health: because wood does not trap debris in the way carpet does, the air in the house is usually fresher and cleaner. This is especially important for people with allergies or respiratory illnesses who need constant clean air in and around the home.

Versatility: hardwood is one of the most versatile materials for flooring. No two hardwoods are exactly the same, which means each house gets a unique look as far as the floor goes. In addition to this, wood naturally has different patterns meaning that you will not be stuck with a particular shade or color.

Durability: hardwood is solid and sturdy, making it resistant to dents and scratches, which are part of daily life. This type of flooring is easily able to withstand heavy furniture as well as items being accidently dropped on the floor.

Value addition: 99.9% or realtors agree that hardwood floors add significant value to the home. This is both in the monetary sense, as well as the perceived value. Apart from hardwood floors increasing the price tag on the home significantly, they are also attractive to prospective buyers, which makes it easier to sell the house quickly and closer to the asking price should such a situation arise.

Aesthetics: the beauty of hardwood floors is undeniable. It is reminiscent of nature in all its glory. Wood floors can also be sanded and refurbished easily to change the color of the floor should you get tired of the current look. The versatility of wood floors also makes it perfect for any kind of interior design conceivable.

How to care for hardwood flooring

As mentioned earlier, installing hardwood floors is a significant investment which since requires proper maintenance to protect your investment and enjoy it for as long as possible. With that in mind, below are some helpful tips on hardwood flooring:

Make sure you know your specific type of flooring and finish. You should also be sure to follow the specific manufacturer's instructions for cleaning and general maintenance. Do some research on how to care for your particular kind of finish. For example, paste wax should never be used on polyurethane finish. Sweeping hardwood floors with a soft broom on a regular basis naturally buffs the surface, therefore protecting it from scratches. Another obvious advantage of this is that it will keep the floor clean. Where possible, leave shoes at the door to avoid dragging extra dirt and grime onto the floor. If not, consider using rugs in high traffic areas such as hallways and entrances to keep feet clean. Remove any solid materials from the floor such as sand, grit and dirt amongst others. These materials are abrasive and can dull and even scratch the floor's finish. Use a dry towel to wipe spills and other messes from wood floors. Oils soaps should NEVER be used on hardwood floors. These oils will eventually build up and will dull the surface of the floor. In addition to this, it will make it difficult to refinish the floor whenever needed. Use a vacuum with a bare floor attachment. Such a vacuum easily removes dirt and dust without scratching or otherwise damaging the floor. Do not drag furniture across the floor when moving it. Instead, lift the furniture when moving it. Where dragging is inevitable, invest in a set of slip-mats. Where these are not available, lids from plastic food containers work just as well. Use only cleaners that have specifically been manufactured for use on hardwood floors. Do not substitute with linoleum, laminate or tile cleaners as these can cause the floor to become extra slippery. Use as little water as possible when cleaning wood floors. Wet spots should also be immediately wiped up after cleaning.

A Final Thought

These are simple helpful tips on hardwood flooring maintenance. Although these are do-it-yourself (DIY) options, it is important to pay close attention as if done incorrectly they can damage your floors. Do not attempt any renovation work on your flooring if you do not have the necessary expertise and experience. Where you are in doubt, it is best to contact your manufacturer or seller and they will be able to give you the directions you need. The great thing about hardwood floors is that they are a solid investment and will pay dividends in the long run with only the minimum care and maintenance needed.

Best Ways to Clean Laminate Flooring

Laminate flooring is durable and does not need too much scrubbing. In fact, scrubbing the material can create streaks and lead to damage. Regular cleaning is important in order to prevent if from getting warped or scratched. However, there are times that dirt and grime get into the fibers and grains. When you need to…

Laminate flooring is durable and does not need too much scrubbing. In fact, scrubbing the material can create streaks and lead to damage. Regular cleaning is important in order to prevent if from getting warped or scratched. However, there are times that dirt and grime get into the fibers and grains. When you need to clean your laminate flooring, follow the next tips.

Start With a General Clean

The first step of cleaning laminate flooring is to start with an overall, general clean. You should do this on a daily basis to prevent the material from getting ruined. Sweep up the dirt and debris and run a mop across it. Not only will you protect your flooring, you will also make it easier to do a deep clean when you need to in the long run. You can get the debris from between the tiles by sweeping the way you laid them; you can also use a vacuum cleaner.

Thorough Wet Wash Monthly

Once a month you need to do a complete wet wash of the floor. You need a bottle with warm water and that is all! There is no need for any bleach, soap or other chemicals. These can actually damage the flooring and make it look worse. When there are spills or a certain area is very muddy, get the mop and bucket out then and clean them up as soon as possible. Make sure the mop is wrung out to avoid water stains. If you really need something stronger than water, use diluted white vinegar.

Use a Microfiber Cloth to Dry

If there is a lot of water on the floor, you need to mop it up. The best material to use is a microfiber cloth. This will soak up a lot of water and keep your work to a minimum. If you wrung out the mop enough, the laminate flooring is probably only slightly damp, which means air drying is perfect. You do not want it to stay damp for too long. The downside of water is the breeding ground for mold.

There is no need to use anything special for cleaning laminate flooring. Warm water is perfect and white vinegar will do the trick for tough stains. Make sure you clean it on a daily basis to protect it from damage from the daily dirt and grit that will be walked through into your room.

It Is All About Sustainable Flooring Materials

The flooring industry has undergone massive changes over the past years with the latest innovation in home renovation being focused towards environmental consciousness. Sustainable flooring has gained traction, and is now widely looked after by homeowners looking for new flooring that is safe for the environment. Sustainable flooring materials basically refer to materials that reduce…

The flooring industry has undergone massive changes over the past years with the latest innovation in home renovation being focused towards environmental consciousness. Sustainable flooring has gained traction, and is now widely looked after by homeowners looking for new flooring that is safe for the environment.

Sustainable flooring materials basically refer to materials that reduce the demands on the eco-systems. This means that the materials used in the manufacture of the flooring are environmentally sound starting from the harvesting, production, use and consequent disposal. The Canadian home renovation industry has not been left behind in this move to do as much as possible to protect the environment through the use of renewable materials.

About Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC)

Traditional flooring options such as vinyl, linoleum and carpeting are all popular, and have their own individual advantages. Vinyl for example is low-cost, and comes in many different colors and designs to fit any decor. Carpeting is aesthetically pleasing and can offer additional insulation against the cold Canadian winters.

Even with all these advantages, volatile organic compounds (VOC) are a major concern in the flooring industry. VOCs are produced during the manufacturing process of these floors, which creates environmental concerns. These harmful compounds are also known to 'stick' to vinyl and carpeting long after the manufacturing process, therefore introducing them to households.

People with allergies, environmental diseases and respiratory illnesses are most at risk from these products that still contain the harmful compounds. This can lead to a host of health problems; which is why sustainable flooring (which is free from VOCs and other harmful components) is so important.

Examples of Sustainable Floors
These kinds of floors are made with sustainable flooring material that is not only good for the environment, but also a perfect choice for people living with allergies and respiratory illnesses. Even for the perfectly healthy, being environmentally conscious is a big part of modern day living. With that, below are some examples of sustainable flooring options:

Cork
Cork tiles have been in the flooring industry for a significant amount of time now, and are only growing in popularity. These are made from shredded wood, which means that they are environmentally sound. Some of the advantages of cork include durability and the ability to with mildew and mold, making them a good choice for most areas in the home including bathrooms. Cork tiles are also versatile as they can be woven or stained into many intricate designs and patterns. The result is eye-catching flooring that is made out of sustainable flooring materials.

Recycled Metal Tiles
Recycled metal tiles are a favorite for urban dwellers and are particularly popular with hipsters. This kind of flooring offers unique designs that can be made to reflect the personality of the home owner. Apart from the typical shiny and silver looks, the recycled aluminum or brass materials can be color appreciated to create a variety of desired finishes. This kind of flooring is also versatile, and adds great design and texture elements to any home.

Recycled Rubber
These tiles are made from sustainable sources or from sustainable rubber. This means rubber that is not made from crude-oil by-products such as with car tires. These are great for additional soundproofing as they are inherently able to absorb noise. In addition to this, recycled rubber tiles are durable, and therefore perfect for high traffic areas in the home. The soundproofing qualities of recycled rubber flooring is great for condominiums or apartments as they add that extra bit of privacy as well as being unique and aesthetically pleasing.

Bamboo
Since bamboo is a grass rather than an actual tree, it is a model material for sustainable flooring. Hardwood trees take anywhere from 20 to 40 years to grow, where bamboo only takes between 4 and 6 years. It is therefore easy to see why this is such a great option for sustainable flooring. Bamboo floors come in many different styles, colors and designs, and give the home that natural look and feel that is a favorite for nature lovers.

Natural Linoleum
Made out of linseed oil, natural linoleum is a perfect option for sensitive places such day care centers, hospitals and old-age homes. This kind of flooring comes in many different varieties to suit any decor, and is durable and aesthetically pleasing.

Grass Fibers
Just like bamboo, grass fibers make idyllic sustainable floors and represent nature at its best. Examples of grass fibers include sisal, jute, hemp and cotton among others. Woven into carpets, the flooring offers all the benefits of traditional carpeting without the presence of VOCs and other health and environmental concerns. Apart from being durable, these types of floors come in a variety of natural colors, therefore eliminating the need for synthetic dyes.

The Bottom Line
Going “green” is big business today, meaning that a lot of the companies out there are scrambling to represent their business as being environmentally conscious where this is not necessarily the case. It is not always as it sees with sustainable flooring materials. That being said, you should look out for:

  • Ingredients used in the manufacture of the flooring. Specifically look out for formaldehyde and polyurethane based chemicals which are a no-no
  • Check for a certification label on any sustainable flooring products
  • Consider the shipping distance. Remember that transportation involves gas emissions and use of fossil fuels

It is possible to have a great looking floor and still be environmentally conscious at the same time.

Carpet Versus Hardwood Floors

Choosing between carpet and hardwood floors may just be a matter of preference. Some homeowners feel carpet is cozier and more comfortable, while others prefer the ease of cleaning and the aesthetic of hardwood. Whichever type of flooring you prefer, there are distinct pros and cons for each. Let's take some time to consider carpet…

Choosing between carpet and hardwood floors may just be a matter of preference. Some homeowners feel carpet is cozier and more comfortable, while others prefer the ease of cleaning and the aesthetic of hardwood. Whichever type of flooring you prefer, there are distinct pros and cons for each. Let's take some time to consider carpet versus hardwood floors and the benefits and drawbacks of each with respect to the opinions of various experts.

Hardwood Flooring

Hardwood flooring tend to be the more expensive option, and homeowners should expect to pay between $ 8 and $ 15 per square foot for material and installation. Reclaimed hardwood floors can be considerably more expensive and may even exceed $ 30 per square foot. Still, flooring experts point out that hardwood floors last longer and can be restored over time. Moreover, hardwood floors add much more long-term value to your home than carpets.

Another benefit of hardwood is that it is a sustainable, renewable, and recyclable material. Also, wood flooring reduces the presence of allergens in your home while also emitting fewer volatile organic compounds into your home. Similarly, pet hair, dust, and other debris are much easier to clean than hardwood floors, thus reducing their impact on air quality. And, spills are not a concern as it is nearly impossible to stain hardwood. Still, wood should be cleaned regularly; cleaning professionals recommend sweeping at least every other day.

Finally, when it comes to the design elements of flooring, hardwood is increasingly popular. Indeed, in today's housing market, trends favor hard surfaces such as wood or tile, because because of the larger variety of woods and colors available today compared to a decade ago.

Carpet Flooring

Carpet is considerably more affordable than hardwood with material and installation costs starting between $ 3 and $ 5 per square foot. The reduced cost is related to the fact that carpet can be installed more quickly and easily than wood alternatives. Regular vacuuming and cleaning helps to improve the lifespan of your carpet, but stains and damage from use are a relevant concern.

Today, there are environmentally friendly carpets available that reduce the release of volatile organic compounds, but still air quality can be affected in homes with carpet. Carpet tend to hold dust and pet dander which can be a significant concern for people with allergies. However, carpet also hides dirt and needs to be cleaned less frequently than wood flooring. Vacuuming once a week or twice a month is sufficient for carpet maintenance; though, you'll likely need to steam clean or spot clean carpets from time to time as stains are a near certainty.

Homeowners often choose carpet because it is softer and more comfortable, especially in cold climates. Color and pattern choices abound when it comes to carpet, and you'll also find different carpets that match the function of a room. Dark, durable carpets make a great choice for family or play rooms, while lighter, softer materials are beautiful additions to more formal rooms.

Ultrastately, the choice between carpet and hardwood is yours, but you should take some time to consider the costs and pros and cons of each before making a purchase.

Options to Prevent Slipping on Smooth Floors

Smooth floors, like hardwood and tiles, can become easily slippery. An easy option is to put carpet down instead, but certain areas should not have carpet, like kitchens and bathrooms. This is why applying an anti-skid tile treatment is the best option. Tile, marble, vinyl, and linoleum are placed in the same rooms as sinks,…

Smooth floors, like hardwood and tiles, can become easily slippery. An easy option is to put carpet down instead, but certain areas should not have carpet, like kitchens and bathrooms. This is why applying an anti-skid tile treatment is the best option.

Tile, marble, vinyl, and linoleum are placed in the same rooms as sinks, showers, and bathtubs. This increases the chances of slipping occurring. Bathrooms, bathrooms, and laundry rooms are common areas where accidents from slick floors occur.

Buying sprays and lacquers is a cheaper and easier solution than replacing all of the floors in the home. These can be applied to increase a floor's slip resistance. Anti-slip sprays and paints can be purchased through various online companies. They are applied to tile, ceramic, porcelain, unfinished concrete, and some types of marble and granite.

Spray or paint should be applied directly to the flooring after being thoroughly cleaned. The treatment should sit on the floor for fifteen minutes and then should be washed away. This leaves a coating of anti-slip coverage on the flooring. The treatment will need to be reapplied over time, but it is less expensive than replacing existing floors for slip resistance.

Online companies also offer aerosol epoxy sprays for homes. They come in convenient premixed cans that only require one step to apply. The epoxy formula is sprayed over bathtubs, showers, stairs, garages, or patios to create synthetic grit. This reduces the slip properties of the applied surface.

To apply epoxy sprays, the surface needs to first be dry, clean, and free of any oil, wax, dirt, loose paint, or other containments. The epoxy should be sprayed in a sweeping motion at a distance of 12 to 15 inches for area to be properly treated.

The surface will be dry to touch in one hour. In 24 hours, the area is ready for heavy foot traffic. The spray should be reapplied as needed, which is usually every six to twelve months. The same amount of time should be used to measure any other sprays or paintings applied to the surface to make it non-slip.

There are other ways to prevent slips and falls in the home by buying anti-slip accessories for the floor, rugs, and mats. They are inexpensive and easy to install. Rubber or foam stickers can be place underneath bath mats and rugs in the kitchen, laundry room, or patios to prevent them from moving or sliding when stepped on. This reduces the risk of slipping and falling in these areas.

Bathtub liners can be purchased as most home improvement, drug, and grocery stores. Rubber inserts are placed at the bottom of the bath or shower. The immediately cover other slippery materials like tile, ceramic, and other smooth bathroom flooring materials. It is an easy and inexpensive way to prevent slipping.

Anti-slip tape works on stairways and other narrow areas that need non-slip accessories. They are like regular tape, available in rolls, but they are rough in order to provide transaction where placed. Larger anti-slip step and walkway pieces are essentially larger pieces of non-slip tape. They cover an entire step instead of the edge.

Consider installing these other flooring solutions if there is room in the budget for new floors. Textured linoleum offers more traction and reduced potential for slipping than smooth linoleum. Try slate for a stone floor solution. It is a rough and colorful stone that does not become slippery, even with water spilled on it.

Carpet should be installed where it is possible. Some rooms this is not a good idea, like the bathroom. However, using bath mats will help reduce slippage, along with properly airing out the bathroom so carpets will dry out and not mold.

Common Questions About Epoxy Floor Installation

An epoxy floor installer gets many questions from customers before installing an epoxy floor. This is natural since not everyone knows that goes into installation. Epoxy is an easy and effective floor solution that is more cost effective than purchasing a whole new floor for an area. A proper epoxy floor job is a big…

An epoxy floor installer gets many questions from customers before installing an epoxy floor. This is natural since not everyone knows that goes into installation. Epoxy is an easy and effective floor solution that is more cost effective than purchasing a whole new floor for an area.

A proper epoxy floor job is a big investment in time and money. It is important that people know as much as possible before buying an epoxy floor kit. Even if people do not want to do the job themselves and want to hire a professional installer, the knowledge from epoxy research will allow them to properly question professionals about their installation.

Sometimes professional installers are not that professional and can not tell people the abration rating of the topcoat or other performance specifications. Being able to question installers will help people choose the perfect installer for their floor. Installers who can not answer basic questions are buying epoxy off the shelf that will not do the job.

Performance specifications are the indicator of what an epoxy can and can not do. Low quality epoxies have little or no performance data. There is more technical information out there so people know exactly what they or their installer are buying.

For new or old concrete floors, all of the dirt and residues need to be washed off of the surface. For the best results, choose power washing. The floor needs to be etched with an acid safe etching solution provided in kits. This will remove deep dirt and open the concrete pores so the epoxy has a rough surface to adhere to.

Etching does not remove grease and oil stains. An oil or grease remover is needed for these kinds of stains. All oil and grease stains need to be removed or the epoxy will not adhere to the floor properly. The floor should dry for 24 to 48 hours depending on the ambient conditions. Then the floor needs to be covered with an epoxy kit.

New floors need to be cured for a minimum of 30 days before epoxy coating can be applied. The new floors will also need an extra strong etching, or second etching, since there are many curing residues on the surface that need to be burned out. If using an instant crack repair compound, then the cracks or dicots need to be patched after the etching.

Essentially, people want a floor that is dry, rough to the touch, and as clean as new concrete with no cracks or divots visible. This is the best way to ensure the epoxy bond properly and create a beautiful final finish.

When applying epoxy to floors that are sealed, all of the sealers need to be removed entirely. A buffing machine or sander with an aggressive grit should be run over the surface of the sealer as much as possible. A strong Muratic Acid solution is needed, made of 2 parts water to 1 part acid, to remove the sealer.

Test to make sure the floor is ready for treatment by sprinkling water on the floor. If it bead, then the floor needs to be resanded, reetched, and retested. The floor then will be neutralized with TSP powder after etching has completely removed the sealer.

Depending on the sealer grade, a diamond might be needed to grind it off. Do not attempt to apply epoxy paint over a floor that still has sealer on it, because it would be a waste of time and money.

Wood floors can even be coated with epoxy. The floors need to be sanded to remove dirt and factory coating. The floor then needs to be primed with a special primer and coated with an epoxy kit. These can be tricky, so it is best to call a professional installer for this kind of job.

How to Bullnose Natural Stone Tiles

Any bullnose trim is used to create a smooth and rounded edge for building corners, staircases, verandahs, counter tops and for other areas which have sharp edges. You can order masonry units from manufacturers with square bullnosed corners already in place. You may often hear people referring to quarter-bullnosed tile or half-bullnosed tiles. These different…

Any bullnose trim is used to create a smooth and rounded edge for building corners, staircases, verandahs, counter tops and for other areas which have sharp edges. You can order masonry units from manufacturers with square bullnosed corners already in place.

You may often hear people referring to quarter-bullnosed tile or half-bullnosed tiles. These different types are used in different areas of the home or office, but they are all meant to protect the corners of tiles.

The first thing that you need to do is to install the tiles in the shower area. Instructions of this process are given by the manufacturers, but if you are unsure of your ability to install them by yourself, you should consult a mason or construction contractor who can give you valuable advice.

When it comes to preparing the tiles, be sure that you put on the necessary safety equipment before you start using an electric grinder. Even though you will not be working at high speeds, you want to make sure that your face and eyes are protected. Use the grinder at the lowest speed possible, hold it flush with the surface of the tiles and make contact with the tiles in a relaxed manner. Remember to always wear gloves and a dusk mask.

Move the grinder so that you reach all angles, work slowly and do not remove too much of the surface of the tiles. It is important that you move perpendicular and parallel to the surface so that you rounding them and not just grinding them. It should only take about 10 minutes to get a lovely rounded surface. Remember to work slowly!

When polishing the tiles, you should always use either a resin polishing pad or a diamond polishing pad after the grinding process is complete. This polishing process will leave the tiles looking glossy and shiny. Use the same motion with the pads as you did when you where grinding down the edges of the tiles and make sure that the entire area is polished evenly. When the bullnosing and polishing is complete, use a shop vacuum to clean up the shower area and use a brush attachment to tidy up the areas in between the tiles (the grouted area).

If you are not sure that you can do this bullnosing job successfully, rather enlist the help of a professional. You can watch them in action and will then know exactly what to do next time you are required to do this job.

Preparing Your Self Storage Unit for Winter

Whatever you are placing in your self-storage unit, whether it is a single highly valuable item, all of your household belongings or simply a treasured possession, you will need to take special care before storing it to avoid any damage. This is even more important as winter approaches and cold weather will have an impact…

Whatever you are placing in your self-storage unit, whether it is a single highly valuable item, all of your household belongings or simply a treasured possession, you will need to take special care before storing it to avoid any damage. This is even more important as winter approaches and cold weather will have an impact on the internal conditions of the storage unit.

One of the problems most likely to damage any item in long-term storage is the moisture that occurs naturally in the air. This does not necessarily mean that the unit is “damp”, which is an excess of water in the air that can not be removed but is simply a natural part of our environment. Ideally the best environment for storing anything precious is one that has effective dehumidifiers and is well-insulated from the weather but this is not always possible or, if it is possible it is not affordable.

However, if you are renting a standard storage unit there is still plenty you can do to prevent damage particularly as winter approaches and the outside elements starts to have a greater impact on your stored possessions. There are various guidelines you can follow to ensure your precious belongings remain in good condition through the winter:

• Clean all items thoroughly and then cover with fabric (such as old sheets or blankets), paper or cardboard. Do not use plastic covers or bubble wrap as this can cause condensation and trap moisture under the cover.
• Treat any leather furniture, seats and even small leather items with a leather protector to repel moisture from the surface.
• Treat wooden furniture and other items with a wax-based wood conditioner to protect from moisture.
• Rugs and fabric items should be rolled up with layers of acid-free tissue paper and covered in cotton dust sheets. Never fold fabrics or rugs; laying flat is the best option but not always practical.
• Wrap silver items in cotton cloths to minimize the amount of tarnishing. Although tarnishing is not permanent damage it will be easier to clean the items once removed from storage if the tarnishing is minimized.
If you are storing a car, motorbike, camper van or any other vehicle then take a look at the following checklist for added protection:
• Replace the engine oil
• Empty the windscreen washer containers or add anti-freeze
• Do not apply the handbrake (use blocks if you are concerned about any movement)
• Leave all the windows open a crack so that the air can circulate to avoid condensation forming
• Spray WD40 on metal parts to protect them from corrosion
• Oil the locks to prevent them freezing in extremely cold weather

Since moisture in the air can damage a wide range of materials, but especially wood, fabric, metal and leather, reducing the amount of moisture in the air will retain your possessions in good condition for longer. If your self storage unit is not climate controlled you may want to consider investing in your own dehumidifier for extra protection of your items whilst in self-storage during the winter months.

It’s Time to Switch to Green Carpet Cleaning

Cleaning a carpet is definitely an important task for many house owners. Each of them has to keep his carpet clean if he wants to live in a clean environment. However, as a home owner, you should not think only at the final result. You should also take into account the technique that is used…

Cleaning a carpet is definitely an important task for many house owners. Each of them has to keep his carpet clean if he wants to live in a clean environment. However, as a home owner, you should not think only at the final result. You should also take into account the technique that is used when cleaning, especially since there are so many on the market nowdays.

Green cleaning

Adopting green techniques of cleaning is something everyone should consider. Green cleaning relationships on substances and methods that are environmental friendly. Lots of people have adopted this style and maybe it is about time that you try it too. What are the most popular reasons to go green, you ask?

Save the environment

This is probably the most important element when it comes to adopting the green method: it protects the environment and it keeps it safe. There are plenty of cleaning methods that influence the surroundings in a negative manner, and they can really affect the waters and the soil around us. In addition to this, lots of cleaning products include toxic ingredients that also have negative side effects on the nature. Thus, by adopting an eco-friendly cleaning method, you will manage to maintain your carpet clean while doing your part to protect the nature.

Health problems

Another major reason that should make you adopt green carpet cleaning is represented by the health advantages, which will keep your family safe from harm. As you probably know or you are just discovering, most of the cleaning products used today contain chemicals that can have a negative impact over your respiratory system, as well as pose other health risks. And not just for you, but for your family too! Unfortunately, there are many cleaning products that include strong substances with negative effects in them out there. However, the green method encourages you to use environmental-friendly products that are safe and which have been previously tested. They are safe for the surroundings and for the health condition of your entire family. The green cleaning methods will save you the trouble of worrying about health problems derived from your carpet cleaning.

Final recommendation

Make sure you read the label carefully before you purchase any cleaning products and also make sure that you pay extra attention to the ads for green cleaning. There are many businesses that spend a lot of money to convince you that their products are very safe, when in fact they are far from that. If you have any sensitivity to Sodium Hydroxide, you will have to be extremely careful, because this substance is not popularized in the most obvious manner. If the substances used can change the water's pH, you should insist on finding out what chemicals are used in the process. You can even do a Google search to discover what substances you will be introducing into your house.

Keep in mind that green cleaning techniques are not based on dangerous chemicals for cleaning your carpets. The green products use lots of active ingredients (surfactants, water, fragrances). You can also benefit from non-toxic chemicals or biodegradable ones. Always ask before you use the substances mentioned into your
house.

Are the reasons mentioned above enough for you? Do not lose any more time and start practicing green cleaning right at this moment. You will not be sorry!

Slate Floor Cleaning – The 4 Step Process to Professional Stone Floor Care

There is huge variety available when looking to source slate tiles; this metamorphic rock can be found in different colors and shaped tiles which allows for true individuality while laying these tiles in your home or business. Slate tiles offer a naturally slip-resistance surface and can therefore be the ideal flooring for a kitchen or…

There is huge variety available when looking to source slate tiles; this metamorphic rock can be found in different colors and shaped tiles which allows for true individuality while laying these tiles in your home or business. Slate tiles offer a naturally slip-resistance surface and can therefore be the ideal flooring for a kitchen or bathroom. Many would say that it produces a rustic and natural feel to any space, whether traditional or contemporary.

Whilst slate flooring is a great source of thermal resistance, it can sometimes be prone to slight cracking and flaking. Although slate is durable, it is likely that over years of use that your beautiful slate floor may look dull and has lost its original lustre. If this is the case, it is illegally that shop-purchased cleaning products will revive your stone and you will require the assistance of a stone floor cleaning and restoration specialist.

Your chosen professional will offer a wide range of benefits to your stone restoration project including faster completion of the work, a superior finish, time-served experience, stone-specific knowledge, industrial machinery and incredible products, specifically formulated for slate. The process to which they will restore your floor is as follows;

Step 1: a careful inspection of your slate floor will be completed. This will provide the opportunity of discussing the necessary work required, stain removal, any possible limits and timescales of completion. From this inspection; you will then receive a written quotation on headed paper to confirm the exact price of the work.

Step 2: preparation! Your home or business needs protecting from the slate cleaning process; walls, skirting, furniture and possessions should be protected and covered. This makes way for all dirt, dry particles and soil to be removed.

Step 3: a cleaning solution is applied. Slate is a natural stone and will require in-depth knowledge of the exact products that will achieve the best possible clean without damage. Industrial-strength rotary cleaning machines are then used to agitate the cleaning solution, which is then rinsed thoroughly and dried.

Step 4: sealing your slate. This is an incredibly important part of the process and aids the long-lasting results that professionals can achieve. Not only will this help toward repelling liquid spills but it will reduce mildew build-up on your tile and grout. This process is managed by hand and a color enhancement sealer can be used to really give your slate floor that wow factor.

The above information provides detailed confirmation of the intricacies and delicate nature of slate cleaning. A floor care specialist will have a true understanding of the process, the best products available to use and the best-available machinery to complete the job in a timely manner. You will be left feeling confident that your slate floors are in the safest hands and the restoration results will offer further confidence that a professional floor care is the right decision for your beautiful slate.

Basic Reasons To Buy Wholesale Flooring

Flooring is always an essential part of interior design and, as much as possible, its installation should not be delayed. If you want to get a great deal on flooring for just the style or selection you want, your best option is to go wholesale. The trick to getting beautiful, high quality flooring for the…

Flooring is always an essential part of interior design and, as much as possible, its installation should not be delayed. If you want to get a great deal on flooring for just the style or selection you want, your best option is to go wholesale. The trick to getting beautiful, high quality flooring for the value you want is to go where the professionals source their materials: wholesale dealers.

If you are working with a tight budget, it really pays to know where the amazing bargains are. Fortunately, you do not have to be an industry insider to have access to a flooring wholesaler. Wholesale dealers have business promises that are accessible to and easily found by the public so finding one would not be too difficult. In general, these dealers do not have higher or different selling prices for members of the general public as long as they are getting wholesale flooring.

The difference between wholesale price and retail price is staggering, so buying wholesale can really save you a bundle.

At wholesale stores or exports, there is always wider selection for different products, materials, designs and brands. You do not want to be limited in your choices even if you are seeking a bargain, so it is really best to go to a dealer that has the means to rent large warehouses for its inventory. Whether you are looking for carpet, laminate, or cheap hardwood flooring , choose the store or supplier that has its own or rents a warehouse or storage facility for their products. In addition to having a wide variety of options, this is also the place to chance upon unique specialty materials that you may be interested in for much less than what they usually go for.

Wholesale dealers often have buyers clubs that offer rewards, amazing discounts, and other privileges. You may find that the cost of membership, which can be bit steep, is worth the savings it provides you. Shopping at a wholesaler also usually means that the staff often deals with professionals and is also privy to the latest introductions into the market, since its sales people tend to be so much more knowledgeable than those at a retail shop – which, in turn, means that you can get better insight and advice while you do your shopping.

Creating a stunning space either for your home or for your workplace is a worthwhile investment. Inject wisdom into that investment by getting your materials from places that offer the best deals. When it comes to flooring, wholesale is definitely the way to go.

Flooring Basics – Which Type of Floor Is Right for You

These days, there's an absolute plethora of flooring options to choose from. But before you start pulling up old floorboards or splashing out on a sparkling expanse of granite, it's wise to carefully think through what kind of flooring will best meet your needs. Apart from the cost, your main consideration is the claims that…

These days, there's an absolute plethora of flooring options to choose from. But before you start pulling up old floorboards or splashing out on a sparkling expanse of granite, it's wise to carefully think through what kind of flooring will best meet your needs.

Apart from the cost, your main consideration is the claims that will be placed on your new floor.

Here's a brief guide to choosing a floor covering that will not only stay within your budget, but also meet the practical and aesthetic demands of your home.

The basic options:
Broadly, you have 3 basic flooring options:

  • Hard : which includes stone, tiles, brick, and wood.
  • Resilient : materials like linoleum, rubber, leather and resin.
  • Soft : which includes natural floor coverings like coir, jute and sea grass – and carpets and rugs, of course.

Practicalities to ponder
In a busy home – and even a home with one or two occupants – the floors can take quite a beating: oil, water, dirt, mud and grit from the outside world; patches in front of chairs that get worn; pathways that are worn along well-trodden routes. And your spirits, too, can take quite a battering when you lay a beautiful new floor, only to find it looking shabby just a few months later.

To avoid making a bad choice, go over the following checklist before investing any time or money:

  • First of all, what is the condition of your existing floor? Does it really need to be replaced? Could it be sanded, painted, stencilled or varnished? Or spruced up in some other way? There may be a cheap / simple option that's starting you in the face that could save you an awful lot of time and expense.
  • How much use do you expect your new floor to get? In places that get a lot of foot traffic – like stairs, hallways, and landings – it will need to be hard-wearing.
  • How easy to clean and maintain does it need to be? Floors in kitchens, bathrooms and children's rooms need to be dirt and stain-resistant and easy to clean.
  • How permanent does it need to be? An expensive, difficult-to-change flooring like stone makes sense in a kitchen, but may not be such a wise choice elsewhere. If you think you¡¯re likely to want a change in a year or two, an easy-to-replace floor is the way to go.
  • Are you going to pay professionals to lay your new floor, or do you wish to tackle it yourself? Remember that if your DIY skills are limited, you may come unstuck. Stone flooring for example, should only be laid by someone experienced in such matters. And even simpler materials can be a challenge.

Tips For Cleaning Your Hardwood Floors

Hardwood floors are great to give your home or business a more rustic and classic feel. They can be difficult to keep clean and scratch free. Experts say that you should get them finished about once every ten years or so. There are some things that you can do to before getting hardwood floor refinishing.…

Hardwood floors are great to give your home or business a more rustic and classic feel. They can be difficult to keep clean and scratch free. Experts say that you should get them finished about once every ten years or so. There are some things that you can do to before getting hardwood floor refinishing.

Here are some things that you can do to prolong the life of your hardwood floors:

Clean regularly. This is pretty basic but also very important. If dirt and dust particles are left lying on hardwood too long, they can leave marks and scratches. It is recommended to vacuum at least weekly. If you use any cleaning products, check the labels to make sure that they are specifically made for cleaning wood floors.

Be selective with brushes. Only use soft nylon brushes or vacuum cleaner attachments.

Clean up spills immediately. Any liquid spills should be immediately wiped up with a dry cloth. If there is still a mark, try a damp cloth but be sure to dry that immediately. If that is not working, try a non-ammonia based window cleaner. Some materials such as furniture polish and hairspray are especially bad for floors.

Do not wax. 'Nuff said.

Use mats. If there are any areas that get a lot of traffic, place a rug or mat to absorb the dirt. You can also place them in areas where you eat, prepare food, or anywhere else that is likely to get spillage. You can also put them under any furniture with pointed legs that could possibly scratch your floor. Get an extra large mat to place either inside or outside (or both) of your front doorway.

Do not get wet. Much like a mogwai, it is bad to get water on hardwood floors. Look for places where water can get in. Close your windows when it rains. Put something under any potted plants. And also wipe up any spills immediately.

Avoid bright light. Also like a mogwai, too much exposure to sunlight is not good. It you notice that there is a window giving excess exposure, pull the blinds or shades over it for some time.

Over time, your floor will eventually accumulate scuffs and scratches, and you should seek help from professionals to provide refinishing and other restoration services. By following these simple cleaning tips, you will prolong the life and shine of your beautiful floors.

Removing Common Stains From Different Types Of Flooring

Stains are a part of our everyday lives, especially when we consider the different types of floating options in our homes. You should know that all floors are at risk of getting stored, no matter how careful you are. With food and beverage spills, kids' activities, pet messes, and foot traffic along with regular wear…

Stains are a part of our everyday lives, especially when we consider the different types of floating options in our homes. You should know that all floors are at risk of getting stored, no matter how careful you are. With food and beverage spills, kids' activities, pet messes, and foot traffic along with regular wear and tear, your flooring will take a beating. However, there is no reason for you to fret over these stains as long as you are aware of the many ways you can combat them. Here are some great ideas for removing stains from various floating options.

Hardwood

• If you have children in your home, you have probably already had to face an instance where one of them has used a permanent marker on your floor. The best remedy for this is to apply a dab of toothpaste on the affected area. The stain can be gently rubbed out using a damp cloth for the best result.

• Another common problem of hardwood flooring is water stains. They can be easily characterized by a slightly smoky white colored patch on the surface of the floor. The first thing to do in such a case is to cover the affected area with a non-abrasive and dry cloth. Next, use a hot iron and go back and forth over the area for 3-5 seconds at a time. Once you have done this, use denatured alcohol to dampen a cloth and gently rub the areas where the stain is still visible.

• You can soak a cotton cloth with hydrogen peroxide to treat general stains. All you need to do is place the cloth on the stains for about 2-5 minutes allowing time for the peroxide to get soaked into the wood. This can help bleach out any stain.

Vinyl

• Various stubborn marks and scuffs can be removed from vinyl flooring simply by wiping them with a cotton cloth using isopropyl alcohol.

• For stains that may result in discoloration such as fruit juice, wine or tomato juice, bleach is the best choice. Use a 1: 4 bleach-to-water ratio to dilute the bleaching agent and soak a cloth in the solution before laying it over the stain. Allow it to sit in its position for an hour at least. Bleach may take a bit longer to work but is sure to get rid of any type of troublesome stain.

• A paste of oxalic acid powder with water can be made to treat rust stains on vinyl flooring. Use a damp cloth to rub the paste on the stain. Ensure that you wear rubber gloves before handling the solution as it is highly acidic and can cause harm to your bare skin. You should also make sure that the room is well-ventilated. Once you're done, rinse the area well with water.

Stone and Tile

• Flooring professionals have been using muriatic acid for a long time to clean some of the toughest stains on tile and stone flooring since it works best. It's a heavy duty cleaner so users must wear a respirator and rubber gloves while using it. Also, make sure the room is well ventilated. Use a 1: 5 muriatic acid-to-water ratio and dilute the solution. Apply it to the stained area using a toothbrush. You must make sure that you have cleaned up all the solution once you're done.

• Grout tiles is very common. A mixture of shaving cream and lemon juice can be put into a spray bottle and sprayed on the grout. Allow it to sit for 5 minutes minimum. Using an old toothbrush, the grout can then be scrubbed.

• For gum stuck on a stone or tile flooring, try freezing it with an ice cube and gently scrapping it away.

Stains of any kind of flooring can be any homeowner's worst nightmare. These outstanding tips are sure to cover a large variety of scenarios despite it's relatively easy to prevent stains from occurring in the first place.