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Things to Have in Mind When Choosing Timber for Your Flooring Project

Posted by on Nov 30, 2016 in Uncategorized |

Choosing the ideal flooring material for your home is an essential part of a construction or property renovation project. Timber is one of the most durable materials that can add a naturally beautiful appearance to the home. It can be used to give the floors a contemporary, country, or rustic appearance depending on the type of wood and finishes that you choose. However, there are numerous types of timber out there today, and not all are suitable for flooring. Read on for some things you should have in mind when choosing timber supplies for your floors so that you can get the most out of the project. Solid vs. engineered timber There are two broad categories of timber: solid timber which comprises hardwood and softwood species, and engineered wood which is made up of various particles, fibers, or boards or wood products that are bonded together using adhesive. Hardwood and softwood can both be used for flooring, but they have different properties. Softwood species include cedar, spruce, fir, and pine. They are low density and are lighter than hardwood, and this makes them a cheaper flooring option. Hardwood species include oak, mahogany, and teak. They are heavier, more durable, and more expensive than softwood. Engineered wood is a durable flooring material that is neither as expensive as hardwood nor as cheap as softwood. The primary advantage of engineered wood is that its properties can be improved to give the wood moisture or water resistance, something that can’t be achieved with solid wood unless it is finished. Engineered wood is particularly suitable for underfloor heating applications. Style of the timber Timber can be cut in various styles to give the floor a desired appearance, design, or feel. For instance, you can use two or three strip floor that makes the flooring look busy. If you want a less busy look, you can use wide timber boards for the floor. Wood planks can be accentuated on the edges to add style or installed plainly to create a flat surface. Assess your style and the look you want to give your floor then choose the ideal design, size, and accents for your timber. Surface finish Surface finish can significantly determine the durability and appearance of timber. When dealing with solid wood, you want to choose a finish that will provide water resistance and improve the wearing resistance of the floor. If you are installing the floor in high-traffic areas, you need to choose durable finish that will extend the durability of the floor. Finish can also give your floor a shiny, matte, or subtle look with low sheen. Have these issues in mind when choosing a finish to ensure that it delivers in terms of durability and aesthetics. Installing a timber floor requires that you have the above issues in mind so that you can get durable, functional, and aesthetically appealing...

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Demolishing At Home? Talk To A Concrete Crushing Company

Posted by on Nov 14, 2016 in Uncategorized |

If you are planning to carry out any demolition work at home, it’s a good idea to liaise with a concrete crushing company. This is because a concrete crushing company provides many services that relate directly to demolition services. Below, find out what these demolition-related services are, how they can be of help to you during a demolition, and more. Situations that apply So which demolition situations exactly apply here? They include the following: Remodelling exercises: If you are planning to redesign your house, you might have to tear down some walls as you expand certain rooms or build extensions. Full demolitions: If you have an old, unsafe or outdated property, you might be planning to demolish it completely in order to build a newer, safer and modern house. Demolition of outdoor structures: You might be considering demolishing outdoor structures around your house, either to create space for new developments or in order to get rid of them for good, e.g. garage, patio, shed, etc. What a concrete crushing company can do for you: If you are planning to embark on any of the above demolition exercises, you can benefit from a crushing company’s services in the following ways: They can help you dispose of the building waste by removing it from your property, often free of charge. They can recycle the resultant concrete or brick waste by crushing and screening it for you at a fee. They can buy the building waste from you altogether at a modest fee. Why work with a concrete crushing company during a demolition exercise? There are several reasons why a concrete crushing company complements a demolition exercise so well. They include: You get to dispose off your building waste in an environmentally-friendly manner. The waste is put back into construction instead of being dumped in a landfill site. You get a chance to recycle the building waste yourself by re-using it for your future projects. If you choose to recycle your building waste, you get to cut your building costs significantly. A concrete crushing company can turn your waste building waste into different materials such as fill sand (fine or coarse), road base (ideal for road construction, paving or drainage), and aggregate (used for concrete). Note that apart from selling your waste to them or seeking recycling services, you can also buy the above-listed products from them at any time for your build, whether you’re demolishing or not. For more information, see a business such as South Coast Concrete Crushing &...

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Smart Glass Explained

Posted by on Nov 9, 2016 in Uncategorized |

More and more Australian offices and homes are turning to smart glass as the perfect solution for providing both privacy and thermal control. Smart glass becomes darker when it is exposed to sunlight, thereby reducing the amount of heat energy that enters the building. Not only can this reduce air conditioning costs, but also it means that you can see clearly out the window at all times, even in the heat of the day, when bright sunlight can be a nuisance. As the sun lowers in the sky, smart glass allows more light to flood in, meaning that electrical lighting costs are also minimised. Overall, chromatic glazing has many advantages over traditional glazed windows, but how does it work? Electrochromic glass, as smart glazing is referred to in the industry, is a submembrane of a window fitting that can be made of either plastic or glass. The tinting membrane is made up of several fine layers put together by a process of sputtering. When fully made, there are five ultra-thin membranes on the inside of the window’s pane. There is a separating layer in the middle of these five layers with two electrode layers on either side of the layer. Outside of the layers are twin transparent electrical contact membranes. When no electrical power is supplied to the electrode layers, the glazing is clear. Window tinting is achieved when the electrode layers are charged. When powered up, lithium ions in the electrode layers move from one electrode to the other. As more of these ions reach the outer-facing electrode layer, the window gets more tinted, and more of the sun’s rays are reflected away. One common misconception concerning smart glass is that it requires constant electrical energy to keep the sun out. This is not so. Yes, a charge is required to get the ions moving through the separating membrane initially, but the energy of the sun is all that is needed to keep the window functioning fully. As the sun goes down, the energy level drops and more lithium ions migrate back to their original position, allowing more light in. Therefore, very little energy is required to keep an entire installation of smart glass running. The system can be entirely automated if a photo-sensor trips a circuit to engage the initial power burst when the sun comes out. When you consider the energy savings these glazing units can bring to a building, the amount of electricity they consume in operation is minimal. For more information, contact a window installation...

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Trends and Upcoming Changes in the World of Construction Recruitment

Posted by on Jul 28, 2016 in Uncategorized |

If you own or manage a construction company, you undoubtedly are feeling the effects of the employment crunch. The increase in building projects has not been supported by an increase in workers, and as a result, construction companies have to be creative in their search for new talent. What’s happening in the world of construction recruitment? How can you get a leg up on your competitors and find the best workers in the industry? Here’s a look at what’s happening and what’s on the horizon in terms of recruiting construction workers: 1. Booming gig economy Whether you work with tradespeople, writers, consultants or cab drivers, you’ve probably heard the phrase “gig economy” bandied about. As part of the expansion of the gig economy, more and more tradespeople are setting up their own independent consulting businesses. You can find these one-man bands on job boards, through internet searches or by networking with others in the industry, and they do everything from project management to quantity surveys to everything in between. The upside of hiring a professional on a gig basis (for a short time period) is that you only pay for what you need, rather than hiring someone for the long haul. The downside, however, is that these professionals may not have the commitment to your company that a full-time employee may have. Additionally, you may need to draft a non-disclosure statement so they don’t share details of your project with your competitors. 2. Continued stability of recruitment companies From an employer’s perspective, the issue with the gig economy is that it can place the burden of recruitment on the employer, taking up valuable time. This is especially true in cases where the employer is looking for a highly skilled trades person or consultant as described above. However, construction company owners and managers who want to outsource that part of the process can still work with recruitment companies. Recruitment companies find quality workers, and they match them to your needs. However, to ensure you get the best employee possible, you should work with a reputable company that has its insurance and liability policies in place, as well as a long history of customer satisfaction. 3. Apps on the horizon As the construction recruitment industry continues to change to meet the needs of construction companies and workers, apps may fill in the gap. For example, this trend has already started in Singapore. There, construction workers whose visas are expiring may create a profile with their credentials, and construction companies who buy a subscription to the app can easily search through the profiles and hire a worker. As so much of the Australian building industry relies on immigrant labour, a development like this would not be surprising in the world of construction recruitment in the near future.   For more information, visit sites...

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Why Ducted Heating Systems Are Ideal For Any Household

Posted by on Jul 19, 2016 in Uncategorized |

As the name suggests, a ducted heating system is one that functions to provide heating throughout your residence using a network of ducts. A ducted heating system will be made of a heating unit that is connected to insulated ducts. These insulated ducts are installed in various rooms in your home according to where you would like the heat to be directed. A misconception some people have is that ducted heating systems are installed in homes during the construction process. The truth is you can opt to have a ducted system installed in your home even if you previously did not have the ducts and vents in place. Here are some of the reasons why ducted heating systems are ideal for any household.  A ducted heating system is energy efficient When it comes to selecting a heating system for your household, most homeowners would like one that enables them to use energy efficiently. With some heating units, you typically only have control over the temperature you would like for your residence. The heating system then distributes heat throughout the residence until this temperature is achieved. These systems are not the most energy efficient option as you inadvertently end up heating rooms that are not even in use. With a ducted heating system, you even have the chance of opting to zone your house.  Zoning gives you the ability to control which rooms are heated individually, rather than having your entire house heated simultaneously. This enables you to keep your utility bills economical, as you will not be wasting energy by heating spaces that are unoccupied. You can make your ducted heating system even more energy efficient by opting to use natural gas as its energy source rather than electricity.  A ducted heating system has high air quality Another reason that ducted heating systems would be ideal for any residence is the high air quality they provide to the household. There are several ways that a ducted heating system has improved air quality when compared to other heating systems. Firstly, a ducted system does not dry out your indoor air. As such, there is a lesser risk of respiratory problems when using this system.  Secondly, the central heating unit that the ducted heating system uses is located outdoors. This eliminates the chance of any fumes being circulated in your indoor air.  Thirdly, ducted heating systems come with inbuilt filters. These eliminate any particles and contaminants from the air being circulated in...

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The Advantages of Glass Splashbacks in a Kitchen

Posted by on Jul 12, 2016 in Uncategorized |

Every type of material that you can choose for a kitchen splashback will have its own pros and cons, and glass is certainly no different. However, there are some very good reasons why homeowners choose glass for their splashback and for their kitchen benchtops. If you’re in the market for a new splashback for your kitchen, note why glass can be the best option over any other material. Easy to switch looks Glass splashbacks are typically not glued onto a wall. Instead, long pieces of glass are cut to fit the wall and then attached with connectors at each corner. The wall behind the splashback is painted, and the glass works to protect it. This can make it easier to change the look of your kitchen; you can have the splashback removed so you can repaint, and then have the splashback attached again just as easily. If you were to choose any type of tile as your splashback, removing it can mean removing the drywall to which it’s adhered and having to replace both the drywall and the tile. This can be a costly and messy job, so if you tend to update your kitchen’s appearance often, glass is the better option. More durable Tile used for kitchen splashbacks and benchtops is very durable, but it could still break if you were to set down something very heavy, pound something on the benchtop, or even expose it to high heat. The glass used for splashbacks and benchtops is very durable and meant to withstand this type of rugged abuse and heat from the kitchen. You may find that a glass splashback or benchtop lasts much longer than any type of tile, laminate, and other such material, so you would need to repair or replace it much less often over the years. Lightweight The splashback and benchtop material you choose will add weight to the walls of the kitchen and the cabinets themselves. In older homes that may have wood frames and flooring that have weakened over the years, you may find that you need to brace up the frame or the subfloor before you can add certain heavy tiles or a stone like granite. Glass is very lightweight and because a glass splashback is not glued to the wall itself, it typically won’t need this added bracing. It also won’t add much extra weight to the counters so you may not need to brace up the subfloor. This can make it a more affordable installation and also protect your home from potential damage caused by heavier...

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Batten Down The Hatches: Choosing Roofing For Buildings In High Wind Areas

Posted by on Jun 17, 2016 in Uncategorized |

It’s fair to say that Australia’s weather systems aren’t exactly forgiving, and various parts of the country are prone to cyclones, tropical storms and other sources of damaging high-speed winds. As such, the building situated in these areas must be constructed with wind resistance in mind from the ground up, and choosing the type of roofing to put on a building at high risk of wind damage is all-important. Unsuitable roofs can shed tiles and suffer structural damage that can be enormously expensive to repair, so keep the following factors in mind when choosing your roof: What shape should the roof be? A highly wind-resistant roof should present a low, sleek profile, to redirect wind around and over the building while avoiding generating too much wind resistance. Traditional two-sloped gable roofs are often unsuitable for these purposes, as wind hitting the flat sides of the roof is not redirected at all and can place great strain on overhangs and underpinnings. Choosing a flat roof is obviously the most effective way of minimising wind resistance and is particularly useful when roofing commercial and industrial buildings. However, many residential home owners do not like the aesthetics of flat roofs, and planned communities may even block the building of a flat-roofed residential property. Consider choosing a hipped roof instead — these roofs slope downwards at all side of the building, to allow wind coming from any direction to pass smoothly over the roof. What material should the roof be made from? While traditional clay roof tiles look attractive and can stand up to some fairly robust winds, they are still vulnerable to wind damage. Moreover, tiles that are loosened by wind can come free, damaging other tiles in a cascade effect and even falling to the ground to endanger passersby. As such, a wind resistant roof should be made from slightly more exotic materials, such as: Metal — Metal roofing is considered by many to be the standard for wind-resistant roofing, and the interlocked sheets of a well-made metal roof can withstand very high winds without shedding or becoming damaged. Asphalt tiles — Heavy enough to resist high winds, and not prone to shattering like clay tiles. Slate tiles — Extremely heavy and secure, but they are still prone to cascading damage if a tile is loosened. A good choice for residential properties where metal roofing would look too stark. What about other design considerations? Besides these general concerns, there are also a few specific precautions you should take when choosing wind-resistant roofing: Avoid overhangs: Deep overhangs and other architectural embellishments can be very attractive, but they also dramatically increase the amount of uplift the roof experiences. Keep overhangs to a minimum, and avoid wide, flared guttering. Choose a tough underlay: The underlay you choose for your roof should have excellent tensile strength to avoid tearing and damage from broken tiles. Avoid staples: Stapling roof tiles or sheets down is quick and easy, but does not provide much in the way of strength. Nail your tiles in...

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Garbage Removal Services: Why You Should Let the Professionals Handle It

Posted by on Mar 1, 2016 in Uncategorized |

When it comes to handling your household garbage, hiring a local professional garbage removal service is certainly the best way to go. At a reasonable fee, you will get all your garbage taken care of in an efficient, safe and responsible manner. However, for those of you who are still determined to handle your own household garbage, there are a few things you may want to consider. The equipment In order to handle the garbage on your own, you will have to get a skip bin to hold and transport the garbage from your home. You will need to find a good skip bin hire deal or purchase one, if you feel so inclined, which you will then have to maintain at your own cost. Having a garbage removal service handle this for you, means you will not have to think about skip bins or their maintenance. Safety concerns Unless you are quite keen on separating your garbage, there are some hazardous materials that get thrown in together with the rest. These include items such as household cleaners, batters, fluorescent bulbs, garden chemicals and paint products, among others. They emit fumes that can be harmful to your health if you are repeatedly exposed to them, requiring protective clothing when handling this garbage. Most professionals are better equipped to handle these risks than you are, so it is better to let them handle it and eliminate the risk of disease. Another safety concern has to do with handling the skip bins or dumpsters that store and remove the garbage from your property. Bins and dumpsters are made from dense material so that they can be viable for use with minimal repairs for a long time. This makes them quite heavy so that without proper skills and equipment to move them, you could get seriously injured. Rather than risking injury, let the professionals handle it. Disposal If you choose to handle your own household garbage, you are choosing to be responsible for both the collection and removal of the garbage from your home, as well as the final disposal of it at the right place. There are designated dumping sites that you can locate within your state or municipality, and you will have to pay in order to access them. Further, there may be items in the garbage that can be recycled and while you may know a few, there are others you may not be aware of simply because you are not a professional in the garbage business. Garbage removal companies have a rapport with the disposal sites so by hiring bins, you will save both time and money dealing with these sites. In addition, they know all the recycling plants and can easily ensure that all the re-usable materials get to them in proper condition, something you may not be able to do as...

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Finding a Contractor to Maintain Your Swimming Pool

Posted by on Feb 23, 2016 in Uncategorized |

A pool takes up a considerable amount of money and investment to construct. Seeing all these colossal amounts of money go down the drain is quite an unpleasant experience. All this can happen when you hire an amateur to do the job. Care has to be taken when maintaining the pool and, therefore, in selecting a proper pool maintenance contractor. There are definitely a few things you will want to consider when looking to hire a contracting company to maintain your swimming pool.  Do a Background check. A pool is too big of an investment to just let amateurish work spoil it. If you are seriously looking for a qualified contractor, then it is time to do a proper background check. This involves looking at records relating to the business and seeking for any complaints on the maintenance company. Search for a listed accredited company and follow them, even on social media, and get reviews, recommendations, or complaints on the company. Positive reviews equal better customer service. Get Recommendations. You know that neighbour or colleague with a swimming pool? The best real-time honest opinion about their maintenance contractor is from them. It is from them that you can also settle on a targeted list of who to approach. This group is normally willing to share their experience.  They can direct you away from or to a particular set of contractors. Recommendations can also come from internet forums or community websites where people share insights into the pool maintenance experiences they have had. But care and caution have to be taken in these, as they are easy to compromise. Get references:  You have spoken to your neighbour and also gotten recommendations from sites and friends. You select the company you want and arrange a meeting. The most logical step to take is to ask for the list of clients that they have maintained pools for. If the contractor is volunteering the list of their clientele, then it’s a great sign. Go through the list and don’t just pick the top four. Randomly go through the list and choose contacts randomly. Get their honest opinion and reviews about the contractor. Most importantly, know when the job was done. This is a pointer to whether the listed clients have been cherry picked. Always listen to your gut: From the time the contractor approaches you, always ask yourself whether they are worth the trouble. Too-low estimates or asking for payment in cash can be pointers. Follow your gut no matter...

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How to Create a Mini Yard on Your Apartment Balcony

Posted by on Feb 9, 2016 in Uncategorized |

Exposure to nature is proven to have positive effects on your mental and physical health. However, if you’re one of the 11% of Australians living in a flat, you’ve probably not had the luxury of a yard to visit every day — until now. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to turn your apartment balcony into a miniature garden. 1. Lay Artificial Grass The logistics of laying down real turf on a concrete or wooden balcony are a little too complex to make it worth your while, but astroturf is a great alternative. High quality commercial synthetic grass can look just as good as the real thing, without all the drawbacks. As long as your balcony is relatively flat with good drainage, you’ll be able to get artificial grass laid on your balcony with little difficulty. Call in a professional to ensure your luscious lawn is the perfect foundation for your new mini yard. 2. Get Potted Plants Since you won’t have any soil to grow them in, pot plants are your next best bet. A variety of plants will adapt to container growing — from flowers to vegetables. The right plants for you will depend on how much space you have, which containers you prefer, and whether your house faces the sun. If you do your research before choosing, you’re bound the find the perfect foliage for your new yard.  3. Place Outdoor Furniture What good is a yard if you can’t immerse yourself in it? Depending on the size of your balcony and its weight limits, you’ll have plenty of options for outdoor furniture. If you like relaxing, an outdoor chaise lounge and parasol will give you the opportunity to bask in the glory of your new garden. If you’re a foodie, why not opt for a table and chairs with a small barbecue? Unless your have a balcony that can withstand a very high load, opt for lightweight, wooden furnishing. 4. Attract Wildlife You’ve got the flora — now you need the fauna. Being high off up the ground, you’re in the perfect position to attract birds and butterflies to your new yard. Plants with pollen and nectar (like lavender and honeysuckle) will create a haven for pollinating insects like bees and butterflies. If you prefer birds, they’ll appreciate brightly coloured flowers too. If you have enough space, birdbaths, nest boxes, and feeders will all boost your chances of creating your own tiny wildlife park. Even if you don’t have a lot of space, it is possible to create a mini oasis so you can enjoy the benefits of the...

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Improving Treatment of Your Household Wastewater to Reduce Contamination

Posted by on Jan 28, 2016 in Uncategorized |

Having a wastewater disposal system in your home is important. However, with such systems, your household wastewater should be properly managed as well. This is because the wastewater may contain contaminants that can degrade the quality of water for uses like drinking, food preparation, and watering of livestock. Some of the potential contaminants in your household wastewater include infectious viruses, excess nutrients like nitrates, and disease-causing bacteria. Properly installed and maintained systems for the treatment and disposal of household wastewater will reduce the impact of the system on surface and ground water. Therefore, here are ways of effectively handling your household wastewater.  Volume Minimizing the volume of household wastewater that enters your treatment system is an effective strategy. This is because less volume improves the treatment by reducing the number of times you have to empty your holding tank. This means that waste will spend more time in the system, increasing the time for settling, aeration, decomposition, and soil contact. To reduce the volume of wastewater, you will have to minimize water use. You can do in many ways. For instance, eliminate the non-functional uses like flushing your toilets to dispose of waste, such as tissue, which can be disposed like solid waste. You can also turn off the water between uses and fix any plumbing leaks. More importantly, create awareness in your family on how to reduce water use. Quality Domestic wastewater often contains some amounts of contaminants. This amount can be relatively small, but has a huge impact on the usefulness of the water in your home. Therefore, to ensure that you are improving the quality of your wastewater, try the following: If you have a garbage disposal unit, minimize its use because they deposit large amounts of organic matter and suspended solids into your septic system. Moreover, they use additional water, and since you want to minimize water use, this won’t be so good. Don’t push disposable diapers, paper towels, tampons or grease down the drains of your septic tank because such materials can clog the system and affect its performance. Avoid putting toxic substances in the drain of your septic tank because they will end up in the ground water. Such substances include solvents, acids, degreasers, and the like. Collection Collect all the waste that should be treated to minimize the escape of untreated waste. Leaking treatment pipes or tanks can allow the wastewater to return to your water supply system without being treated adequately. Moreover, don’t let rainwater or water from your roof drainage to add to the volume of your wastewater. Instead, divert the clean water away from your house. For further assistance, contact local professionals, such as those from Multiple Trades &...

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