Monthly Archives: October 2012

Garage Door Openers 101

0
Filed under Construction, Garage Door Openers
Tagged as , , , , , , , ,

Your garage door is most likely the largest moving object in your home.  It’s probably something you don’t give much thought about until it’s time to replace it.  Understanding the ins and outs of garage door replacement is a foreign concept to most of us.  Below we’ll translate common garage door terms so you have an easier time selecting the best one for your property.

When picking out the type of garage door you’d like, it’s important to know that there are 3 distinct types.  They are:

Chain Drive Opener- This type of opener is essentially a motor that drives a chain which rotates around a metal horizontal rod using a trolley type system to open and close the door.  Perks about this type of opener are that they are easy to install and the most cost effective option.  They also can lift the heaviest of doors.  A downside is that this type of door opens and closes loudly.  Chain drive openers may also need to be adjusted since the belts and pins can weaken and the unit can become immobilized.

Belt Drive Opener- This type opens with rubber instead of chain belt.  Homeowners like this type of garage door opener because it is quieter than the others.  It works great if your garage is connected to your home and family members come and go on different schedules.  They also tend to open and closer faster than a chain drive opener.  A drawback to this type of opener is that it is usually more expensive than a chain drive opener.   

Screw Drive Opener-A screw drive opener uses a steel drive screw that is engaged with the motor.  Therefore, they do not contain chains, belts or gears.  The fewer the parts, the less the chances become that something breaks.  They tend to be more powerful than the other two types and are the fastest to open and close.

Once you’ve selected the type of garage door that is the best fit for you, the other factorthat must be considered is horse power.  Here are the most popular choices:

½ Horse Power-This is the most popular choice because in most cases it’s all you need.

¾ Horse Power- Is the better option for heavier doors than ½ horse power.  The motor also tends to last longer than that of a ½ horse power.

1 Horse Power-This is the ideal type of motor for a heavier door because of its efficiency and power.

When it comes to installation, if you aren’t confident you know what you’re doing, we recommend that you work with a professional because installing a garage door incorrectly can injure you and your property.  Be sure to check with the Better Business Bureau, Angie’s List and previous clients to ensure that you are working with a reputable company.  If you’re in the Twin Cities metro area, we highly recommend Blackhawk Garage Doors.  Visit their website http://www.blackhawkgaragedoor.com/  to learn more.

Tune into AM 830 WCCO on Saturdays from 9:00-10:00am hosted by Denny Long and Andy Lindus to ask questions regarding your home improvement projects. Call us now at 1-800-873-1451 or check us out on the web at www.lindusconstruction.com to schedule a free in-home estimate.

The Underground World of Doomsday Shelters

0
Filed under Andy Lindus, LeafGuard, Lindus Construction, WCCO Home Improvement Show
Tagged as , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

The secret “underground” building market for what are now being called doomsday shelters is on the rise in our country. Self-proclaimed Doomsday Preppers are spending thousands to millions of dollars on their innovative shelters.  They envision a scenario, in which it is no longer safe to participate in society at large. They choose to live in an underground bunker, a converted missile silo or an above-ground fortress until the doomsday disaster passes. What disasters are they preparing for you ask? It varies for each individual prepper, but they can include financial apocalypse, pandemics, oil crisis, mega-storms, solar-flare-induced power failures & nuclear disasters.  The hit show Doomsday Preppers on the National Geographic Channel has brought this secret society to the forefront and we are going to discuss some of the prepper’s building plans.

What Doomsday Shelter Fits Your Needs Best?

There are many different types of shelters that you can have built in an array of different price ranges that fit your survival needs. We are going to start from the top luxury comforts of shelters down to the most economical that exist today.

Luxury Survival Condo Complex – If your pocketbook can afford it this, it is the ultimate luxury residence for any prepper. Located in Kansas, and called the Survival Condo, your living space would contain approximately 1,800 square feet of living space for 10 people for a full floor layout and 900 square feet  of living space for 5 people for a half floor layout. You luxuries would include, but are not limited to, full kitchens with stainless steel appliances, LED lighting throughout, Kohler fixtures, 50 inch LED TV’s, biometric key access (finger print reader), comes with a five-year food reserve for each person and is fully furnished and professionally decorated. Doesn’t sound like enough? We were just getting started. To up the ante of amenities, you will also be able to enjoy 9,000 square feet in their monolithic dome, access to a redundant electric and water supply with a minimum of 25,000 gallon reserve tanks, air filtration systems that provide protection from Nuclear, Biological & Chemical weapons, A general store & organic hydroponic gardens, indoor pool, spa & workout facility, movie theater, bar & lounge, library & classroom, medical center, communication center with internet access and a digital weather station. At a price tag of 2 million dollars per condo all of this could be at your fingertips. Check out their website at www.survivalcondo.com for more information on this.

Ready Made Family Structures – These types of shelters will run you approximately $50,000-$100,000. They include reinforced steel and are insulated and have air-filtration systems. These types of shelters typically will hold at least a 2 year food supply for a family of five. You can combine these types of steel structures to hold larger amounts of people usually up to 20. You can have these built custom made or bare bones and you can also have them completely stocked with supplies if you want to leave it up to the experts. These products are engineered to withstand catastrophic storms, nuclear, biological & chemical disasters.

 

 

DIY SheltersMany preppers on a budget of $50,000 or less choose the option of DIY when it comes to their survival. The most common types of shelter material are thick walls of poured concrete, old semis or large shipping containers. If you are serious about becoming a prepper you might want to rethink DIY shelters because you can end up sinking a lot more than you planned if you would have just went with the professionals to do it. There are also a lot of preppers that are having their shelters built in the ground before their house is done so they have their living space under their current residence. This way you could have a tunnel going down to your shelter and quick access to safety would outweigh these other options unless you were currently living in them already. We would recommend contracting your local construction company as how to accomplish the shelter the fits your needs most. Having a general contractor on your job will not only save you money, but it could end up saving your life!

Tune into AM 830 WCCO on Saturdays from 9:00-10:00am hosted by Denny Long and Andy Lindus to ask questions regarding your home improvement projects. Call us now at 1-800-873-1451 or check us out on the web at www.lindusconstruction.com to schedule a free in-home estimate.

 

 

 

 

 

 

What Would MacGyver Do?

0
Filed under Home Maintenance
Tagged as , , , , , , , , ,

Fans of the 80’s TV show MacGyver may appreciate the agent’s ability to utilize common household items to solve major problems.  While we’re not going to advise you on how to short out a missile timer with a bent paper clip or dodge the CIA with a confetti cannon filled with make-up powder, we can offer you some slick solutions to common problems using items you likely have laying around the house.  We’ve scoured the web to find the most “MacGyver-worthy” solutions.  Check them out:

Hairspray-removes ballpoint pen ink on various surfaces.  Use care when applying to fabric, as it can discolor certain types.  Spray the end of the thread with hairspray to make it easier to insert into the eye of the needle.

Toothpaste-can remove crayon marks.  Simply rub non-gel toothpaste on a wall and work through with a dampened cloth and marks should disappear.

Large Freezer Bags-Shower head squirting in multiple directions because it’s in need of a cleaning?  Fill a plastic bag with vinegar and secure to shower head with a rubber band.  Let sit until the grime has been released.

Vodka-residue left over from stickers and labels can be eliminated by rubbing a clean soft cloth soaked in vodka on the offending area.  Reward yourself for the quick work with a martini when you’re finished!

Used Coffee Grounds-Freezer smelling funky?  Fill a bowl with used coffee grounds and a couple drops of vanilla.  The scent will dissipate.

Alka-Seltzer-Vases are a real pain to clean out.  Spare yourself the scrubbing by dropping 2 Alka-Seltzer tablets into a vase and fill it to the brim with water.  Problem solved!

Baking Soda- Struggling to get stains out of coffee pots and cups?  Add some baking soda and water to the container and let sit until the stains are removed.

Socks-Packing breakables?  Skip the bubble wrap and newspaper and wrap what you can in socks, t-shirts and towels.

Disposable Showercap-Snag these when you’re traveling and place them on the soles of your shoes when you place them in your suitcase.  This will prevent the grime from ending up on your clothes.

Yogurt Container Caps-Prevent paint dripping by cutting a slit on the top of a yogurt container and sliding it onto a paintbrush handle.

Scotch Tape- Place on a wall before nailing and it will prevent the paint from chipping.

Lemon Juice-Squirting lemon juice onto sliced apples, pears, etc. prevents them from browning prematurely.

Beer-Half drank bottles rarely seem appealing the next day.  Don’t waste it-believe it or not, beer can be poured on rusty bolts to loosen them.

Olive Oil-Stubborn zipper?  Soak the end of a q-tip in olive oil and dab it on the zipper.  This should lubricate it and free the stuck zipper.  Just be sure to keep the olive oil away from the cloth.

Sugar-Make flowers last longer with a teaspoon of sugar in their vase.

Blow Dryer-If your bathroom mirror is fogged from a shower and you don’t have the time for it to clear up naturally, simply turn your blow dryer on and point it at the mirror for 10 seconds.  This will eliminate the problem.

Glass Cleaner-If you have a ring that is too small stuck on your finger, spray some glass cleaner on it and it should slide right off.

Sidewalk Chalk-Chalk repels ants.  Simply draw a line with chalk and the ants won’t cross it.

Aluminum Foil-A quick way to sharpen scissors is having it cut through 6-8 layers of aluminum foil.

Marshmallows-Prevent a bag of brown sugar from hardening by placing some marshmallows in it before reclosing.

Vinegar-Kill weeds in your sidewalk cracks by pouring straight vinegar on them.

Fun Facts Not everything in stores is being marketed for its original intended use.  For example,

Bubblewrap-was originally marketed as wallpaper.

Play-Doh-was originally intended to remove stains on wallpaper.

Coca-Cola-originally marketed as a headache cure.

Slinky-accidentally created during WWII when an engineer was trying to figure out a device that would prevent sensitive instruments from bouncing around & around on navy ships.

Silverware-accidentally created when trying to develop a rust-proof gun barrel.

Viagra-Pfizer was trying to develop a drug that would combat high blood pressure.

Tune into AM 830 WCCO on Saturdays from 9:00-10:00am hosted by Denny Long and Andy Lindus to ask questions regarding your home improvement projects. Call us now at 1-800-873-1451 or check us out on the web at www.lindusconstruction.com to schedule a free in-home estimate.

Home Design Dos & Don’ts

0
Filed under Home Decor
Tagged as , , , , ,

Questioning if you or someone you know is in need of a design intervention?  Check out the following tips on how to turn your home from a “don’t” to a “do”.

Don’t: Match Everything.

Do: Coordinate.  Just because you have a cheetah print comforter doesn’t mean your whole bedroom needs to look like an African safari.  It’s okay to pick a statement item and then choose coordinating, not identical pieces to go with it to give your room a feel of unity.

Don’t: Overdo it on themes.  Do we love apples?  Yes!  Is carrying this theme out by having an apple patterned garbage can in your kitchen overkill?  Absolutely!

Do: Moral of the story, too much of a good thing, is not a good thing.  It’s okay to have accent pieces that mesh well together; it’s just never a good idea to center the theme of an entire room on a season, object or animal.

Don’t: Be a slave to trends (lava lamps, fire engine red rooms, avocado green toilets, etc.)

Do:  Stick to timeless looks on major purchases.  It’s okay to incorporate the latest looks in your home, just be mindful that home design is a constant evolution and that today’s “it” thing will be gone tomorrow so don’t devote a lot of time or finances to short-lived trends.

Don’t: Live in a museum.  Your home is meant to be lived in.  Don’t spring for furniture that you’re afraid to use because of the cost to replace it.

Do: Protect your furniture with stylish throw blankets,pillows or stain-resistant spray.  But select pieces that you’ll both love and use.

Don’t: Live in someone else’s house.

Do: Decorate on your own terms and select accessories, colors and fabrics that reflect your own style.  Anyone else’s opinion should be taken with a grain of salt.

Don’t: View your home as multiple rooms that have no relationship to each other.

Do: Make sure that your rooms have a flow to them.  Choose colors, fabrics, accessories, etc. that complement, rather than compete with each other.

Don’t: Take the cheap way out. 

Do: If budget is a factor, commit to furniture that is stable and timeless so that you’ll get your money’s worth.  It’s much better to spend a little more upfront and buy one couch than to buy the same type of furniture repeatedly because you didn’t invest in quality.

Want to see some more Don’ts?  Visit our Pinterest Board: http://pinterest.com/linduscon/home-design-donts/

Tune into AM 830 WCCO on Saturdays from 9:00-10:00am hosted by Denny Long and Andy Lindus to ask questions regarding your home improvement projects. Call us now at 1-800-873-1451 or check us out on the web at www.lindusconstruction.com to schedule a free in-home estimate.

 

 

 

Baby Boomer In-law Suites Becoming the New Building Trend

0
Filed under Andy Lindus, LeafGuard, Lindus Construction, Uncategorized, WCCO Home Improvement Show
Tagged as , , , , , , , ,

Did you know that one in four Americans is a baby boomer? The United States experienced an “explosion” of births after American soldiers returned home from World War II and sociologists define those born between 1946 and 1964 as “baby boomers”. With baby boomers starting to reach retirement age, in-law apartments, or more commonly called mother-in-law suites have become trendy in 2012 and experts are predicting the trend to keep growing throughout 2013 & 2014 as economic uncertainty is still prevalent. An in-law suite is a planned area for additional adults to share living space on a semi-permanent or permanent basis. They usually feature a full bedroom, attached bathroom and a kitchenette at the very basic level which allows the ideal solution for families caring for aging parents and provides ultimate privacy. The goal of in-law apartments is to live together, without living on top of one another, and below we are going to discuss how this works.

Common areas that are being transformed into in-law apartments

Garage Conversion: Transforming your garage into the in-law suite is most times the most practical and affordable way to since you do not have to add an addition onto your home. This idea works best if you are not planning on having a full living space, rather just wanting to add an extra bedroom and bathroom.

Basement Remodel: Will allow you more space. You could remodel the whole basement of your home to be your parent’s new living space, but you will also be losing that space for your use. We would recommend having a very large basement if this was your decision to not hinder the rest of your family into a smaller space.

Add an Addition or Separate Cottage: If you feel that your home is bursting at the seams with your current floor plan, it would be in your best interest to add an addition or separate cottage. By adding an addition or separate cottage, you will be able to design the space with your parents that fit their needs the best. You will also have separate entryways giving them independence and privacy they still need.

Being able to keep your loved ones close and have a multi-generational home can bring a lot of joy into your life. You need to make sure that you are providing a livable, safe design that works for their quality of life. You will want to implement wider doors and hallways that are open and easy to navigate visually. Another important design factor is having lever handles on doors as opposed to knobs. The lighting of your mother-in-law suite is also very important. Light switches should be larger than normal and have them contrast with the paint or wallpaper color for easy access. Adding a larger window for outside viewing will also add a nice touch.

Make sure that you check with your subdivision, city and/or county to see if they will allow two separate households to reside at the same address. Also, check with your zoning and building codes office regarding the correct permits that you will need for your in-law suite.

Don’t forget to consider checking with your utility company regarding your existing home’s electrical service, plumbing for waste and clean water and your HVAC system to see if they are large enough to handle the new in-law suite if you are remodeling the space in your home.

Developing the right mother-in-law suite house plan involves considering both the physical restraints of the existing property and the personal preferences of the family. As much as possible, the plans should make it possible for the family members to interact with ease but also allow everyone the option of having some time to themselves. There is a wealth of information on the internet for mother-in-law suite floor plan ideas whether you are going to convert your current living space to accommodate them or if you are going to build a stand-alone structure.

Tune into AM 830 WCCO on Saturdays from 9:00-10:00am hosted by Denny Long and Andy Lindus to ask questions regarding your home improvement projects. Call us now at 1-800-873-1451 or check us out on the web at www.lindusconstruction.com to schedule a free in-home estimate.

 

Optimizing Light in Your Home

0
Filed under Lighting, Skylight, Sun Tunnel, VELUX
Tagged as , , , , , , , , , ,

When done correctly, your home’s lighting fixtures should complement and blend into their surroundings.  As you select lighting for your home, it’s imperative to understand that what works in one room may not work in another.  Consider the function of the lighting and the statement you wish for it to make.  It’s important to use more than one light source, installed at different levels, to give your room character.  Below are our suggestions for each room in your home.

Bathroom:  Make the bathroom the optimum place to apply make-up with the correct lighting.  Light coming from multiple directions will illuminate your entire face and eliminate any shadows.  To achieve this, a light above the mirror and on both sides of the mirror (sconces are an easy way to do this.)  If you have a larger bathroom, it’s also a good idea to have a light above or near the shower.  Oftentimes, bathrooms do not have outer facing walls which make them absent of natural light.  One way to work around this it to install a sun tunnel.  They are optically engineered to capture light through a high impact dome on the roof. The light rays travel through a highly reflective tunnel, transmitting a pure natural light with no color shift. The diffuser assembly at the ceiling distributes natural light evenly into the room while limiting bright spots and glare.  (Want to know more?  Visit: http://www.lindusconstruction.com/blog/2012/07/lighten-up-your-life-with-natural-light-through-skylights-and-sun-tunnels/)

Bedroom: Because sleep is the main purpose of this room, you should aim for lighting that creates a relaxing atmosphere.  Reading lamps and sconces are perfect for this room; just be sure to aim them away from the bed.  The ideal height for the bottom of the lamp shade is 1.5 feet above the top of your mattress which will provide ample reading light.  Low watt bulbs (40-60) work best in your sleeping area; in your dressing area it’s okay to increase wattage.

Dining Room: The focal point of this room is the table and because of this, you should select lighting that highlights it.  Drama can be added by installing a chandelier that hangs directly above the table.  Be mindful that the size and style of your fixture should not make it stand out from the rest of the room.  Chandeliers come in various styles; select a timeless look to extend its shelf life.   Be sure that your ceiling is high enough to accommodate a chandelier. Ideally, a chandelier’s bottom should hang about 30 inches above your table.  A dimmer switch is encouraged because it allows you to control the intensity of the lighting in the room.  Don’t limit yourself to just overhead sources, which can make the room feel less intimate.

Kitchen: Kitchens need lighting that encompasses the entire room.  A common mistake is thinking that one light can illuminate the entire space.  If you’re determined on having a single fixture, try track lighting which can be angled in multiple directions to shed light on the areas you desire.  Ideally, a kitchen should blend a few different types of lighting.  Some suggestions include: overhead lighting (complete with a dimmer that can be brightened when you are cooking), under cabinet lighting to illuminate work surfaces and lighting if you have a built in desk.  If you’re looking for a way to incorporate more natural light in your kitchen, it’s worth considering skylights.  They come in a variety of sizes including: square, triangle, oval, etc.  They are a great way to evenly distribute natural light, eliminate direct sunlight & hotspots and add aesthetic appeal to your home.

Living Room: Dimmers can work well in living rooms because the room often serves multiple purposes; there are times when full lighting is needed and others when limited lighting is better.  A table lamp sitting on an end table can be beneficial for those who use their living room for reading.  Just be sure to have the lamp close to a piece of furniture so it can be accessed easily.   Not a fan of end tables?  A floor lamp can easily work as a substitute.  The living room is a great place to have a piece of artwork displayed with a spotlight on it.

Check out our Light Fixtures board on Pinterest for more lighting ideas. 

Tune into AM 830 WCCO on Saturdays from 9:00-10:00am hosted by Denny Long and Andy Lindus to ask questions regarding your home improvement projects. Call us now at 1-800-873-1451 or check us out on the web at www.lindusconstruction.com to schedule a free in-home estimate. 

Prepare Your Home for Winter

0
Filed under Andy Lindus, LeafGuard, Lindus Construction, WCCO Home Improvement Show
Tagged as , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

As summer has become a distant memory and the beautiful trees of fall are turning, it is a great time to think about winterizing your home to prepare for the colder months ahead. Snow, ice and sub-zero temperatures can damage a home’s exterior, leading to costly repairs and adding hundreds of dollars to winter utility bills. Below, we are going to talk about winter preparation tips that you can implement to help save on energy and protect your home from costly damages keeping it in tip-top shape through winter.

Furnace Inspection

You want to make sure to clean or replace your filters before turning on your furnace for the first time this year. Having a clogged air filter restricts the heated air flow from your furnace causing it to work harder and deliver less heat. Check the vents in your home to make sure there are no obstructions blocking them. Your furnace will work less when the heated air is able to circulate properly saving you money. If your home is heated by a hot-water radiator, bleed the valves by opening them slightly and when water appears, close them. Clear the area around your furnace and water heater insuring there are not any flammable materials nearby. You should also consider having a professional check your heating ducts because that is where 60% of your heated air escapes instead of warming your home. Don’t forget to check that your thermostat is working as it should as well.

Clean out your electric & wood burning fireplace

Having either an electric or wood burning fireplace is a nice comforting luxury in the cold months of winter, but they can be very dangerous if you do not properly clean and inspect them every year. Make sure to check your fire extinguishers and replace them if they are older than 10 years.

Electric fireplaces:

  • Check the electrical components such as wires and plugs as well as the log, lines and valves to ensure they are in good working order
  • Dust the interior and exterior to remove debris and clean the glass inside and out
  • Inspect the vents with a flashlight making sure there is nothing blocking them from gas escaping
  • Test your fireplace to make sure that it is working properly

Wood burning fireplaces:

  • Check the interior and exterior of your chimney for any cracks that should be repaired
  • Check the inside of the chimney with a mirror to make sure it is not blocked by leaves, nests or critters
  • Use a chimney sweep to clean the soot from the chimney or hire a professional to do it if you would like
  • Remove all of the layers of ash in the stove with a vacuum or shovel disposing of it
  • Once you are sure everything is cleaned and free of obstructions start your fire and be vigilant with how it is burning for the first few days to avoid any serious problems or even a fire

Exterior Doors & Windows

You should do a walk-a-round the outside of your home inspecting your windows & doors for cracking and exposed entry points and seal them. The use of weather-stripping and caulk around doors and windows will prevent cold air from entering the home saving on your energy bills. You can also use shrink wrap around your windows if you do not plan on opening them for the winter. If you have older doors and windows you can install storm doors & windows which can increase your home’s energy efficiency by 40%.

Check smoke & carbon monoxide detectors

You should always have a smoke detector in every room in your home. You should also have carbon monoxide detectors in your home near your furnace and water heater as well as the areas where the carbon monoxide would travel first such as up your stairs. Take the time to go and check each detector and put new batteries in them. Experts recommend that you change them two times a year.

Winter water disasters

The thought of having water pouring into your home should be reason enough to know where your emergency shut off is in your home. Make sure to inspect your exposed plumbing pipes and insulate them with foam wraps. If you end up having a problem with freezing pipes turn on cold water at the faucet closest to the frozen pipe to relieve the pressure from the expanding ice which can keep the pipe from bursting until you call the professionals for service. Clean out your gutters so when snow melts they are not overflowing which could send the water rushing into your basement.

Reverse your ceiling fans

Your ceiling fans are there to help save on your energy bills. If you have a switch on your fan to change the direction of the blades make sure they are going in a clockwise direction in the winter which forces the warm air down to recirculate throughout your home.

Tune into AM 830 WCCO on Saturdays from 9:00-10:00am hosted by Denny Long and Andy Lindus to ask questions regarding your home improvement projects. Call us now at 1-800-873-1451 or check us out on the web at www.lindusconstruction.com to schedule a free in-home estimate.

Smart Water Consumption at Home

0
Filed under Home Maintenance, Water Conservation
Tagged as , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Did you know that if all the water in the planet fit into a gallon jug, only 1 tablespoon (less than .5%) would be fresh water?  The U.S Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) states that the average American household with 4 occupants uses an average of 400 gallons per day, a majority of which is used indoors.  Smart water consumption saves you on energy bills and also makes for a more sustainable way of life. Below, we’ll offer some easy ways to conserve water without making major lifestyle changes.

Toilets: Your toilet can be responsible for as much as 27% of your home’s daily water consumption.  WaterSense toilets can reduce the amount of water used after each use but up to 80%.  Fix or replace a leaky toilet and conserve up to 200 gallons per day. 

Signs Your Toilet is Leaking:

-It won’t flush unless you hold the handle down to fully empty the tank

-Handle must be fidgeted with to get toilet to stop running

-Toilet makes sounds after being used

-Toilet runs for a long time after a flush

Not all leaks are obvious.  To test whether your toilet is leaking, flush and then remove the tank cover and add a teaspoon of food coloring.  DO NOT flush; wait an hour and then check your toilet bowl for food coloring.  If food coloring is found, it is a signal that a leak is present.  Consult with a reputable plumber about how to remedy the issue.

Faucets: Turn off the tap while you brush your teeth and save up to 200 gallons of water per month.  A faucet continuously dripping can often be fixed with something as simple as replacing a broken washer.  Eliminate the need to run the faucet until the water is cold enough to drink by keeping a pitcher of filtered water in your refrigerator.  Aerators control faucet water flow and screw into the faucet’s spout.  Switching to a low-flow aerator at the end of your faucets allows you to cut back on water usage.

Washing Machine:  Today’s high efficiency washing machines can use half the water that traditional models do.  Wait until you have a full load before you running your washing machine.  A cold load uses less energy than a hot one because the water does not have to be heated.

Shower Heads: Switch to low-flow shower heads to conserve water.

Dishwasher: A full load in the dishwasher will actually use less water than doing the same amount by hand.  Avoid running the dishwasher unless it is full.

Water Heaters: Unlike traditional water heaters, tankless models heat water as you use it.  Depending on the model you select, you can choose to supply only certain faucets or the entire home.

Rainwater Harvesters: Rainwater harvesting is collecting the run-off from a structure in order to store it for later use.  Rain collects in your gutter system that channels the waters flow into downspouts moving it into a storage vessel. There are many different types of rainwater harvesting systems and they range from systems that are as simple as a rain barrel or as detailed as large cisterns that can supply your entire household demand.  They allow you to be in control of your water supply and the collected water can be used in toilets, sprinkler systems, swimming pools and washing machines. It can also be used wash your car, pet, or water plants.

Sprinkler System: Double check to make sure your sprinkler system is watering your lawn and not your driveway or sidewalk.  Water in the morning or in the evening when water is less likely to evaporate quickly.  Avoid watering when it’s windy out because the water will not end up where you intend it to.  Mulch your landscaping to help it retain water.

 

Tune into AM 830 WCCO on Saturdays from 9:00-10:00am hosted by Denny Long and Andy Lindus to ask questions regarding your home improvement projects. Call us now at 1-800-873-1451 or check us out on the web at www.lindusconstruction.com to schedule a free in-home estimate.