If you live somewhere where hurricane warnings are a common occurrence, you need to know how to properly protect your home. When most people think about protecting their home, they think about fortifying their windows and the primary doors into their home. However, when you think about fortifying your home, you should also think about protecting your garage as well. Many individuals keep lots of items within their garage that would be lost if the door becomes compromised. Additionally, if your garage door is blown off your home, this increases the risk that the hurricane windows will tear through and destroy your home as well. Here is what you can do to strengthen your garage door against hurricanes.
Start with the Right Door
The first thing you can do is make sure that you have the right type of garage door installed for the area where you live.
Ideally, your garage door should be windowless. A garage door with windows will require you to fortify both the windows and the door in the event of a hurricane warning, and the windows increase the risk that your garage door will be compromised in the event that a hurricane strikes near your home.
Your garage door also stands a better chance of making it through a hurricane if you have a single garage door instead of a double garage door. A double garage door requires twice the reinforcement and increases the probability of failure.
Vertical Bracing System
To secure your garage door, you are going to want to purchase a vertical bracing system. Many door manufacturers in and around hurricane-prone areas sell these vertical bracing systems; make sure that any system you purchase specifically states on it that it meets or exceeds the Southern Building Code Congress International wind-speed standards. A bracing system that meets these standards should be able to withstand most hurricanes that could come your way. You are going to want to purchase one that is made of aircraft-grade aluminum. Aircraft-grade aluminum is extremely strong and will help provide a very stable backbone for your garage door.
A vertical bracing system is anchored into the wall about your garage door, into the floor next to your garage door, and into the hinges on your garage door itself. This strong anchor system should prevent your garage door from being blown in by hurricane-force winds or from being suctioned outward by the same winds.
This is a job that you should be able to do yourself if you have the right tools on hand. You will need a screwdriver, a hammer, a socket wrench, a socket driver, an electric drill, a masonry bit, and scissors to set up the brace. You may want to set up the anchor bolts that go into the ceiling and floor before you ever get a hurricane warning; these are permanent fixtures and will make it much easier to set up your bracing system when you need it. If you set up the anchor bolts ahead of time, you should budget about an hour to set up this system; if you don’t set the bolts up ahead of time, you are going to need to budget a couple of hours for fortifying your garage door.
For more information, contact a professional like Premier Door Corp.
Are you ready to move your family, pets and all, cross-country? Moves can be even more stressful on animals than on people, so it’s important to take some steps to help alleviate your pet’s worries. The following tips can help with a smoother move.
Tip #1: Set Up a Pet Zone
Empty out a room before the movers arrive. This will be a safe place to keep your pet during the hustle and bustle of the move. You can outfit it with food, water, a bed and a few toys to keep your pet occupied while the movers work in the other rooms. This is especially important, since pets sometimes bolt from their home during the hustle and bustle of the move. If you have large furniture in the room that you can’t move, ask your residential movers to relocate these items before they begin the bulk of the move so you can place your pet in this room.
Tip #2: Package Pet Stuff Wisely
When you get to your new home, you will need to set up a pet room there to keep them safe as the movers work. Pack your pet’s extra belongings, such as all their toys, beds, or large cat trees, in a single box and label it well. Either bring this box with you in your vehicle or have the movers place it last in the truck so it can be the first box out. This way you can quickly set up a pet room and close it off before the movers get down to business at your new residence.
Tip #3: Update Their Tags
Whether tagged or microchipped, make sure you update this information before the movers arrive. It needs to contain a phone number where you can be reached on both ends of your move, such as your cell phone number or the number of your vet or a family member. Also, make sure it is updated with the new address. This way if you pet does escape during the move, they are more likely to be found and reunited with you.
Tip #4: Know Moving Restrictions
Your movers may have some restrictions on what they can put in their moving truck. This means they may not be able to move open bags of dog food or certain medications, like flea medication. If you have a stockpile of these items, either make arrangements to move them in your vehicle or donate them to an animal shelter before you go. Always keep sufficient food and a month’s supply of any of your pet’s necessary medications with you in case you cannot get to a vet or receive a refill right away after your move.
Contact a local residential mover like Diversified Installation Service Inc for more tips on moving with pets.
When it comes to purchasing a new home, you want to perform a thorough inspection of any property you’re considering. One of the areas you don’t want to overlook during your inspection is the windows. Finding out that there are problems with the windows after you purchase the home isn’t exactly a situation you want to find yourself in. Here are some of the things you want to look for when assessing the condition of the windows.
As you walk around the home, take a few moments to open at least one window in every room that you enter. When opening the window you want to pay particular attention to how easy it is to open and close the window. If this process is difficult, this is a sign of a problem.
The issue could be something as minor as the window being painted over, causing it to stick. However, it could be something more complicated like a failing spring mechanism, which is a signal that it’s time to replace the window.
You also want to look around the window frame for any signs of moisture, such as wet spots or mildew. Signs of moisture around a window is a clear indication that the window is aged and is starting to detach from the frame.
When it rains, the water collects around the loose area of the window and leaks into the house. This type of problem is bad news for a number of reasons. Not only will you need to replace the windows, but if the moisture has been collecting around the window for a long time, there is likely water damage.
Negotiate For New Windows
If you find a home that you really like, but it has window problems, this doesn’t have to be a deal breaker. This is actually a good time to negotiate the terms of the sale. If the windows have considerable damage, offer to proceed with the sale if the owner agrees to install replacement windows.
If the owner is unwilling to do this, get an estimate on the cost of replacement windows and ask the buyer to lower the asking price based on this estimate so that you can purchase them on your own. If you can get the owner to agree to either term, you can still get the home of your dreams without having to replace the windows at your own cost.
Although they are often overlooked, the integrity of the windows in home is very important. Don’t overlook a problem that will end up costing you money in the long run. Contact a company like Beyers Window & Door Inc for more information.
Locking yourself out of your house can be such a frustrating experience, especially because there’s often no one to blame but yourself. At best, when you’re locked out without a key you can expect a long, boring wait while the locksmith makes their way to your home or until someone returns with a key. At worst, you could be stuck outside in the rain, snow or severe heat, or worried about the pot you left boiling on the stove inside. You swear to yourself that you’ll never let it happen again, but can you really guarantee that? Anyone can have a thoughtless moment and let a door lock behind them unintentionally. And what if you were to lose your keys, or have them stolen, while you were out of the house? Is there really a way to totally prevent lockouts? Here are a few tips that just might do it.
Forget the Key Under the Doormat Trick
An obvious answer, of course, is to hide a spare key outside. For years, people have been finding “really good” hiding spots – under a doormat, in the mailbox, on top of the door frame, or in a potted plant, to name a few.
Forget all of those possibilities. The problem is that they’ve all been done so often that everyone knows about them – including people who might want to rob your house. Burglars know all about these hiding place, and they probably know a few that you haven’t thought of as well. Someone who wants to rob you will also check to see if you leave one of your windows unlocked in case of emergency, and if you park your car in the driveway, they’ll peer inside to see if your garage door opener is inside your car, so these tricks for getting into your house in case of emergency aren’t safe either.
Consider a Lockbox Instead
If you’re determined to keep a key outside, locking it up is probably your best bet. You can buy small combination lock boxes made for just this purpose. As long as you can memorize the combination, you’ll be able to get back into your house.
You’ll still want to be pretty careful about where you hide it – a thief may steal it to attempt to pick the lock or break the safe, and even if they’re unsuccessful, you’ll still be without a key when you need one. Hiding it in the back yard is best, especially if you have a privacy fence — that way you won’t be observed hiding it.
Change Your Locks
If you need a foolproof solution, changing the locks on all of your exterior doors might be the answer. You may have ended up locked out of your house because of a self-locking door – one that automatically locks whenever the door is closed. All it takes is bringing the garbage out and forgetting to take a key with you or prop the door open. Getting rid of these locks will definitely reduce your chances of being locked out again.
That’s not all, though. Even a regular lock that you have to turn to lock can lead to an accidental lockout. You might turn it out of habit, even though you were only headed outside to get the newspaper, or you might be planning to leave the house for the day and not realize that you’ve forgotten your keys till you get out to the car. If you’re prone to these kinds of lapses, what you need is an entry door handle and deadbolt combo. There’s no way to accidentally lock one of these behind you, because you need the key to lock it from the outside. Some landlords install these to reduce the number of times they’re dragged out of the house to let in a locked out tenant. This won’t help you if you lose your keys after you leave the house, but otherwise, you’ll be safe from a lockout.
Just in case, it’s best to know the name and number of your local emergency locksmith. Keep it in your cell phone or store the business card in the glove compartment of your car, and that way you’ll always have at least one way back into your home. Talk to a company like A-Dave’s Lock & Safe to learn more about locksmith services.