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Improvement For All

Making Your Facility Energy Efficient

Regular maintenance to your building will keep your company running efficiently. However, making repairs that are energy efficient will help the environment and cut your utility costs. Here are a few things you can do to improve your building.

Doors and Windows

Check your automatic doors to make sure that the heavy duty spring loaded hinges are functioning properly. These keep the doors shut preventing cold air from getting inside your building which will conserve energy. Inspect the insulation around these and the windows for wear. Add extra caulk to seal any cracks that might have formed to reduce the energy from escaping the structure. 

Lighting

Consider changing out switches for sensors in your lighting fixtures. These will control the light you use and only allow it on when someone is in the building. Install a timer to shut down only a few lamps for security purposes when the building is vacant. Change out your fluorescent bulbs for LED ones. While these initial costs for these might be more, the cut to your utility bill will be worth it in the end. You can do this within your facility as well as the security lamps and street lights in your parking lot.

Temperature Control

Set up a digital thermostat within the office space of your building. Program it to lower the temperature in the winter and raise it in the summer when the space is vacated. Regularly maintain your furnace or boiler to prevent shut down and to regulate the energy it uses. Look at the insulation that is already installed in the facility and determine if more should be added to trap the air within the structure. Consult with your maintenance supervisor to see which areas might be the most susceptible to let energy escape and find out how much it will cost to reinforce these spots. 

Review Your Costs

Bring an expert in to look over your facility and find what might be using the most energy. Watch your utility bills for any increases or decreases in the costs and where the change might be. Consider the opinions offered by the person hired to complete your audit and determine the amount of money it will take to implement the measures they suggest. Write out a timeline when these improvements can take place, then budget for the repairs to be done. Monitor your energy costs for the savings that will come as each job is accomplished. 

3 Things To Know About Plastic Welding

Since plastic is a large part of modern life, the techniques and processes used to make those items are of great interest such as extrusion molding and plastic welding. In general, extrusion molding is used to make many of the smaller or single piece plastics available to the general public while plastic welding is used to fuse together semi-finished plastics into larger or more complex items.

Who Uses It?

Plastic welding is used to manufacture items used to make other products such as plating tanks or in industrial processes like ducting and drip pans. It is common to outsource your plastic welding needs to companies and individuals who have the skills and tools to make the things that you need. For instance, it is a lot easier for metal plating companies to source their tanks from a specialty company than to set up an area dedicated to making them, buy the equipment and hire welders.

What Is It?

The welding of plastic is like the welding of metals in that it uses softened materials to fuse together pieces in an air-tight seam. This allows the product in question, from tanks to boats, to not leak and is incredibly important when working with hazardous materials. There are two types of welding techniques which can be used, applied heat and solvents. Solvents are more often used in plastics and applied heat is more often used in metals, but the method used depends on the properties of the materials and the specifications of the finished product.

How Is It Done?

Welding, in general, requires the right location, it needs to be done in a well-ventilated area with access to everything you need to clean and weld the surfaces. Safety equipment for plastic welding includes heat or solvent resistant gloves and clothing, a mask to filter dust and fumes and eye protection. Since plastic does not require the same amount of heat that metal does to melt, you only need a soldering iron instead of a welding torch, and your eye protection does not need to filter harmful light. Once the items are cleaned and held in place, heat or solvent is applied to both the seam and to the rod of material used to fill any gaps and the weld is made.

Plastic welding can be done on an individual basis at home to repair products or on an industrial scale to make items like plating and storage tanks, drip pans and ducting. Many manufacturers will get their plastic items from a welding company to make their lines run more smoothly and even work with these businesses for custom items.

4 Renovations That Will Make Your Home More Accessible

Most homes are not designed with accessibility in mind. Tight corners, cabinets to the ceiling, and sunken tubs are all beautiful and attractive features, but they can pose problems to individuals with mobility concerns. Whether you are being proactive about aging concerns or you have an immediate need to increase accessibility, certain changes have a bigger impact than others. 

1. Remodeling the Bathroom

There is so much you can do in a bathroom to make it more accessible. Start by adding grab bars and assistive devices for a quick solution to limited mobility. Removing vanities so that a wheelchair or seat can go in front of the sink, lowering countertops, and installing a roll in shower are all great ideas for a bigger project. 

2. Updating the Flooring  

Not all flooring options are good for wheelchair or walker traffic. Area rugs can be a serious safety hazard, and wheels don’t travel well through thicker pile carpeting. At the same time, very slippery floors can lead to excessive speed, slipping, and accidents. Try to find flooring that offers a middle-of-the-road compromise. it should be slip-resistant and durable enough to handle the weight of a heavy wheelchair rolling over it on a regular basis. There are guidelines for flooring that meets ADA regulations that can be a helpful guideline as you update the floors in your home. 

3. Adding Outlets and Switches

Take a look around your home and make a note of where all the outlets and switches are located. Now, try to imagine using them when seated in a wheelchair. Most switches could be lowered about a foot or two to make them more accessible. If you don’t want to move the wiring or cut into the walls, this might be accomplished by adding an adapter designed to make them easier for kids to reach. Outlets near the floor or above counters pose problems, too. Use power strips where possible to make them easier to reach. 

4. Rearranging the Kitchen

If you enjoy spending time in the kitchen, then you ‘ll want to focus on this space as well. Moving items to lower cabinets, using drawers that can pull out to make things easier to reach, and adding an accessible sink are all great options. If your budget allows, consider a full remodel that moves work surfaces and cooking appliances to a comfortable and safe height. 

Even the least accessible home can be modified to fit your current mobility needs. Start by making changes that affect important daily tasks and safety concerns, and then work up to convenience features to help maximize the impact of any renovations you perform. 

5 Tips for Cleaning Up After a Storm

Spring is almost here, and while that means warmer weather and outdoor activities for many people, it also means potentially dangerous thunderstorms.

Storms can wreak havoc on your property, and it is important to clean up the damage in a timely manner. However, if your property has been hit hard, it can be difficult to know where to begin. Here are some helpful hints for handling the herculean task of cleaning up after a storm.

1. Repair Broken Windows

Broken tree branches and flying debris can hit your windows and cause them to shatter. Your first task is to clean up the broken glass so that no one gets hurt. Ultimately, a broken window will probably require glass repair Irving TX. In the interim, however, you can board them up to protect your home until you are able to arrange the repair.

2. Extract Water

Strong storms can sometimes result in flash flooding. If this occurs, water can collect in your basement. A regular old mop and bucket may be sufficient to handle this job, or you may require a wet vac. Drains may become covered with debris, so make sure you clear this away. This should be one of your first priorities because of the potential for mold growth.

3. Check the Roof

It is very important to inspect your roof for any damage, such as lost or broken shingles. If discovered, these problems should be fixed as soon as possible or they can allow water into your house, which can cause even more damage that can be even harder to mitigate.

3. Inspect the Interior

In addition to checking the roof, you should also look carefully at walls and ceilings inside of your home for discoloration or any other signs of water damage. If found, you should check for the source of the leak and try to have it repaired as soon as possible while also taking steps to mitigate mold growth.

4. Remove Wet Drywall and Insulation

These are porous materials that absorb water. Because they are behind the wall, it is unlikely that they will dry out on their own. Your best bet is to remove them entirely and have them replaced.

5. Clean Up Your Yard

If the damage is minor, this may be a relatively simple matter of raking up leaves and clearing away small branches. However, if you have trees that have sustained major damage, you should consult with a tree expert about whether the tree needs to be removed entirely or it can be saved.

Though not a clean-up task per se, it can be helpful to take pictures of the damage for the benefit of your insurance company.

4 Ways To Improve Your Home’s Curb Appeal

Selling your home can be an arduous process, but there are some things you can do to give your home an edge in a competitive market. Improve the first impression that buyers get by increasing your home’s curb appeal. A few minor updates can make a big difference.

1. Landscaping

You don’t have to spend a lot of money to add unique landscaping features. Start by trimming your shrubs and pruning the trees that you do have. Once you have cleaned everything up, you can embellish with new sod or a water features. Planter boxes are an easy way to add a splash of color to the front of your home.

2. Lighting

The most marketable houses are the ones that look great any time of the day. If someone is touring your house after they get off work, it still needs to look inviting. Architectural lighting design and manufacturing experts recommend adding striking light fixtures to the front of your home for a dramatic effect.

3. Painting

If the siding on your house looks worn, a new coat of paint may be all it needs to look as good as new. You can choose an eye-catching color combination. For example, a gray house with black trim and a yellow door is sure to capture buyers’ attention. 

4. Cleaning

One of the easiest things you can do to drastically improve the appearance of your home is simply to clean off the porch and sidewalk. You can rent power-washing equipment for a reasonable price. An hour or two of work is all it takes to make walkways look like new.

When you put your home on the market, you want to do everything in your power to make the sale go smoothly. Improving curb appeal is a great way to help your home stand out.

Why Invest in a Water Softener?

Many homes across the country are plumbed with hard water. This means the water flowing through the pipes and into appliances and the kitchen sink is full of minerals and metals. Homeowners often find that hard water is, well, hard on the household. If you live in an area where the water is hard, and you probably do, you may already realize just how hard.

Financial Savings

Appliances are expensive and hard water leaves a lot of scale and other buildup that wears down the components of the washing machine and dishwasher. Treating your water with softeners prevents a lot of wear and tear, so appliances last longer. Naturally, those benefits apply to the plumbing in your home as well. Water softening systems reduce the risk of mineral deposits and scale, reducing the occurrence of corrosion, and preventing the need for expensive repairs.

Warmer Showers

If you rely on a water heater for hot water and you’ve had to wait for hard water to get warm, you’ll soon find that softened water heats up more quickly. In addition to making your mornings nicer, this benefit is great for your electric or gas bill, as well, because the heater won’t need to run as long. It also means lower maintenance and repair costs as the heater’s motor and elements won’t have to work as hard for your shower.

Softer Clothes

Finally, hard water deposits aren’t nice to clothing, dishes, your skin, and your hair. When you have fox valley plumbing technicians add a water softener to your home’s water system, clothes are softer, your dishes are streak-free, and your skin and hair feel cleaner. You can decrease the amount of soap and detergent in your washing appliances and worry less about the presence of soap scum in the bathroom.

You don’t need to put up with stiff clothing from the laundry, mineral deposits on your glassware after running through the dishwasher, a significant investment in fabric softeners, appliance repair costs, and that scale buildup around the faucets. Most of these drawbacks can be overcome when you have a water softener installed.

How to OTW: Replacing a Light Switch

Your light switch doesn’t work, but all the other lights on the same circuit do. It might be time to change the switch. But before you call an electrician you should give this job a go on your own because it’s truly is that easy. In this article I’ll go over what you need to do to get this job done. Before you get started its always important to kill the power to the circuit breaker and label the switch your dealing with so its easy to get the power going again.

Then move to the switch plate and unscrew the two exposed screws. The visually locate the wires so you can see what you’ll be working with. From here you’ll need to remove the switch itself from the wall to give yourself a little more space to work. This requires moving two more screws typically. Next you’ll need a circuit tester to make sure there isn’t any power running to the switch. If there is, its unsafe to work with it and you should double check the breaker. Once you’ve determined there is no power using your circuit tester you’re ready to move onto the next step.

Pull the switch out from the wall a few inches and take note of the two black power cables, both of which need to be removed by yet again unscrewing two philips heads. The third wire youll see is a copper ground and needs to be removed as well. At this point the hard part it over! Next get out your new switch which should look very similar to your initial switch. Follow the steps above in reverse order and you’ll be happy you didn’t call that electrician!

ROOFING – STRATEGIES FOR SELECTING THE BEST CONTRACTOR

A properly-installed roof should continue for twenty years, although could it be simple to take its service as a given. If you’re presently looking for roofing in your home or office, below are great tips for choosing and using a contractor which will provide the greatest results.

First, this most likely is not the optimum time to visit bargain hunting. Even if you find prices to alter dramatically, bear in mind that greater prices imply that a specialist has generated enough cushion to their cost that they’ll still use you, profitably, lower the street should there be problems. Should you negotiate them lower so low the roofer is barely covering their costs, they’re going to have no incentive that will help you afterwards.

It isn’t unusual to find the best roofers to routinely turn lower work. To locate these searched for-after professionals, check around among your network to recognize an excellent, reliable contractor. Even though you look for a contractor via a referral, will still be most likely smart to be careful.

The referrer might be a relative or friend from the contractor, or business staff or practices might have altered within the time since their project. Take time to interview several roofing companies, get multiple quotes and also to check additional references. You may also try them out using the local Bbb.

Before your start interviewing, discover what rules your condition has for licensing, connecting and registration of contractors. You will then be in a position to request related documentation from potential providers. Simultaneously, ask to determine evidence of insurance which will safeguard you against worker injuries, whenever they occur in your yard. Ask the contractor to describe the security guidelines and qc procedures the personnel are educated to follow.

Discover the number of workers they expect have installing your homes roof. Question their experience, particularly of the individual who definitely are supervising. The greater professional and arranged the roofing crew is, the faster cellular phone is going to be completed.

Ensure that they’re prepared to talk to and show you, simply put ,, the very best construction method and materials for the new roof. Obtain the final specifications on paper – request an in depth proposal which includes a timelines and details regarding roofing materials for use and try to be achieved. Finally, ask what services and warranties the roofer offers should problems occur.

Salzgitter – City of Steel, Mobility and Logistics

The city Salzgitter is located in southeastern Lower Saxony north of the Harz and south of the Lüneburg Heath. It was founded in 1942 by founding act and still exists today from 31 z.T. relatively distant districts. The urban area covers 224 square kilometers and has a north-south extension of 22 kilometers and an east-west extension of 19 kilometers.

House line in the Ostsiedlung,

Salzgitter bath

Their development and naming is closely related to historical salt finds, but also to the ore deposits that formed the basis for the development of the city of Salzgitter during the Nazi era.

Under the special political circumstances of the 1930s and the associated ideological ideas, the raw material area at that time in the middle of Germany offered ideal conditions for founding a city under the banner of industrial iron ore mining and processing. The Reichswerke «Hermann Göring» were founded in 1937, at that time Salzgitter counted 19,500 inhabitants. An industrial center with 250,000 people was planned. In 1939, Salzgitter already had 46,000 inhabitants, and by 1950 the population had increased to 100,000.

Although iron ore is no longer extracted in Salzgitter, foreign ore is still smelted and processed into steel products. With approx. 50,000 employees, Salzgitter is the third largest industrial location in Lower Saxony and has numerous globally operating companies. Despite its importance as a business location, the city has already suffered population losses in recent years, alone 6.5% between 1995 and 2003. For the future, a continuing loss of population is expected, which by 2015, the city now has about 110,000 inhabitants on a population of 96,800 will reduce *.

The problems due to persistent population losses are concentrated, as in other pilot cities, in the settlements where rental housing with only suboptimal living standards is offered. In the neighborhoods of Gebhardshagen and Bad, the focus is on housing stocks from the 1930s, and in Lebenstedt those dating back to the 1960s. Individual residential areas have vacancy rates of up to 20%, in some residential buildings up to 60% of the apartments are empty.

In the urban redevelopment process, Salzgitter is facing the challenge of carrying out a city-compatible market adjustment of rental housing stocks in several housing estates from the 1930s and 1960s while at the same time adapting remaining housing offers to today’s residential requirements. Particular attention will have to be given to how the continued demand for homes can be taken into account in the restructuring of housing estates.

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