A broken furnace can be a pain in the side. But you can prevent an utter breakdown of your furnace by paying attention to its warning signs and undertake furnace repair. You must lookout for signs that you need furnace replacement despite spending on its maintenance and repairs.

You cannot continue to keep repairing your furnace every time. Some signs indicate that your house is due for furnace replacement. Then, why would you keep repairing a dying furnace? It is time for furnace replacement; look out for the signs below:

1. Steady Rise in Your Energy Bills and Repairs

The first and most significant sign that tells you that you need furnace replacement is a noticeable increase in the cost of your energy bills and equipment repairs. Old furnaces must work harder to produce the heat you need, and this causes them to binge on energy. Cost of regular maintenance and an increase in energy cost tell you to opt for furnace replacement. Buy a new and more efficient furnace.

How do You Know When Your Furnace Needs to be Replaced?2. Strange Noise

Regardless of the frequency of repairs, if your furnace gets noisier and louder than usual, you should consider a furnace replacement. When your furnace keeps making rattling, humming, squealing, and popping sound, it is probably due for a replacement. If after several attempts by the technician to fix its unusual noise level, your furnace still makes that screeching noise, furnace replacement is the next step to take.

3. Ageing

The average life expectancy of a furnace is from 15 to 20 years. Therefore, if your furnace is around this age or beyond, you should be getting ready for furnace replacement. Think about buying a more efficient and improved furnace.

4. Inconsistent or Different Temperatures throughout the Home

The older a furnace gets, the more inefficient it becomes. When notice varying temperature or inconsistencies in the warmth of each room in your home, it shows that your furnace can no longer distribute heat evenly throughout the house. This can cause some rooms to be colder than the rest. At this point, you undoubtedly need a furnace replacement.

You must lookout for signs that you need furnace replacement despite spending on its maintenance and repairs.

5. Yellow Flame

When your furnace starts burning and showing yellow or flickering flame instead of blue, the chances are that your furnace now creates poisonous carbon monoxide. Other signs to look out for to know that your furnace is producing carbon monoxide include the lack of upward draft in the chimney, excess moisture on windows, and water leakage from under the base of the chimney.
As soon as you notice some of the signs discussed above, be getting ready for furnace replacement.

Renovating the house for increasing resale value – what a fun way to make a profit! From marble countertops to skylight windows, there are tons of ways you can upgrade your home. However, some renovations work better than others.

To make the most profit out of your remodel, check out these trendy and profitable projects that can really boost up your home’s value:

Bathroom Remodels

Always a popular renovation, bathroom remodelling is a great way to amaze future buyers. Nobody wants to purchase a home with an outdated bathroom since to upgrade it is usually a time-consuming task.

The key to renovating is to choose projects which will be noticed by buyers and a luxurious bathroom will definitely leave an impression. Having an average ROI of 80%, this remodel really spices up things in the house. Getting ideas is a bit tricky, but here are some that can awaken your creative side:

• Walk-in showers
• Freestanding bathtubs
• Golden/Brass fixtures
• Skylight windows
• Concrete/Wood countertops

New Windows and Doors

When we already mentioned skylights, it’s time to start talking about how replacement windows add resale value. Changing your windows and doors throughout the entire house isn’t that expensive compared to other projects. Plus, buyers love them!

Energy-efficient framing, impact-resistant glass… you name it! The type of windows and doors you have determine two important things: energy efficiency and curb appeal! And modern buyers are looking for both. Currently, the most popular window types are:

• Skylights
• Bay and bow
• Double-hung
• Dormer
• Casement

Outdoor Living Areas

Having a house without a proper outdoor living area is almost pointless. Why would anybody want to buy a house without a deck, porch, and a rich garden. These are the elements that make it much more interesting than an apartment.

Using the backyard to increase appeal and value is one of the smartest ways you can go. If your budget allows it, do a couple of renovations. If not, choose one and make it look stunning. Besides decks, here are some other ideas:

• Fire-pits
• Pools
• Treehouses
• Outdoor kitchens

Kitchen Upgrade

The difference between a bathroom and a kitchen upgrade is that the latter is more expensive. But, in both cases, you will definitely increase your home’s value. Watch TV shows like House Hunters and notice what the buyers are usually asking.

On these shows, you will notice questions like: “Wow! Are these marble countertops?” “How old is the kitchen?” and they just state the obvious: Everybody wants a good-looking kitchen! There isn’t a better way to leave an impression and make some of your friends jealous:

• Hardwood flooring
• Open-shelving
• Natural stone countertops
• Wallpaper and reflective tiles
• Energy-efficient appliances

Decorate the Entire House!

Apart from investing in bigger projects, you must call an expert to redecorate the house. For a relatively cheap price, you will make your house look like a mansion. With simple stuff like repainting, adding wall art, and restaging the furniture you will boost appeal in no time.

But first, you must contact the right contractors. Projects like window replacement, hardwood installation, bathroom remodel, and front entrance upgrade is the key to maximizing resale value. No matter how pretty the house looks, nobody will buy it if it has loose windows and crooked doors.

Proper installation and manufacturing are the keys to getting durable and efficient windows. Choosing expensive framing materials and the glass won’t matter much if you hire the wrong people to do the job. This is why you should always opt for qualified professionals.

With a large number of businesses offering such services, choosing the right windows and doors company can be hard. It might as well be like finding a needle in a haystack. However, following these steps, you will definitely choose adequate professionals:

Look for Certification & Recognition

Experienced companies who have existed for more than 15 years, usually have partners and collaborators. They also have tons of certificates and sometimes can even be members of established professional associations such as SAWDAC Canada.

The best option you could go for is to look for qualified experts who have worked with big and important clients, however, sometimes these companies might be hard to find. In any case, make sure that your chosen contractors are certified and recognized by many customers and acknowledged associations.

Investigate Website & Online Reviews

The best way to check for customer satisfaction is to do a bit of research on the internet. Tons of things can be found out by the way previous clients describe the work ethics of the professionals. Of course, you could find a couple of negative reviews along the way, but these won’t matter much if the majority of the clients are happy with the services.

The company’s website is also important. How they manage their website speaks volume about their professionalism. If they have contact buttons, blogs, and before& after pics, chances are, the company is thorough and dedicated to the job.

Always ask for Warranties

None of the above mentioned are as important as the warranties. If a company doesn’t offer quality warranties, then something suspicious is definitely going on. You should ask both for manufacturing and installation warranties.

The first guarantees the quality of the product while the second one considers the quality of manual work. Depending on the material and window type, a manufacturing warranty can last from 10 to 30 years. The manual work, on the other hand, is covered from 1 to 3 years.

What are their Financing Options?

The great windows and doors companies always have a deep understanding of their clients’ needs. Asking about financing options like monthly payments, referral, and promotions isn’t shameful at all. In fact, it is a completely normal part of almost every business conversation.

Beware though, some companies may include down payments and penalties in their plans. This might not sound that scary at first, but many homeowners have ended up paying much more than the sum written on the initial deal. That’s why always choose those with open loans, zero penalties, and no down payments.

With a large number of businesses offering such services, choosing the right windows and doors company can be hard

What about Quality & Services?

A company can be recognized across the entire globe, but that doesn’t make it flawless and perfect. The most important thing that should be considered is the quality of the services and the products. We discussed earlier how the former can be discovered through certificates, established memberships, and important clientele.

The latter or the product quality is also checked through certificates, but of a different kind. Make sure that the products of the company you choose have Energy Stars, CSA marks, A+ ratings, and IGMA certificates. These marks and ratings are gotten through various product testing that is acknowledged by the top experts in Canada.

Nature’s rule is that all things have a beginning and an end. Mould takes part in decomposing plant life, having a large role in the biological cycle. However, since it appears in damp environments, this fungi can also start decomposing walls, floors, windows, and doors.

When found in homes, mould is extremely dangerous and can ruin the appeal of every home, even one that is worth millions. To understand why you need window replacement if the framing is mouldy, here is some information you must know about:

How Does it Occur?

The ideal environment for mould growth is a damp, warm, and humid one. The walls, floors, and pipes we have in our homes can get damp due to improper ventilation, leaks, and faulty drainage. That’s why the most common areas for indoor mould growth are basements and bathrooms.

Sadly, mould reproduces with impeccable speed. This means that it can quickly spread from one room to another. Avoiding such scenarios means regularly cleaning and ventilating the home. Adequate heating/cooling systems, quality windows, and proper insulation will definitely reduce chances for its reproduction.

Interesting Facts

Even though it sounds evil, mould can actually be beneficial in some situations. First, it lets you know that you have water damage in the house. Second, it is used to produce beautiful types of cheeses. And third and final, mould is used for the production of penicillin. But, to getter a better grasp on mould and its behaviour, here are some interesting facts you should definitely not mention at the dinner table:

  • Mould is actually a living organism, a type of fungi (to be more specific)
  • There are more than 100,000 species of mould
  • During reproduction, it emits spores that can travel through air and water
  • Mould can withstand extreme temperatures as well as immense pressure
  • After water exposure, mould will start to grow within the first 24 to 48 hours
  • Mould allergies are common, affecting around 15% of the entire population

Dangers of Mould on your Windows

The Dangers

Whether you began to love or hate the concept of mould, one thing is for sure – it is extremely dangerous for human health. The spores it produces during the reproductive process travel through the air and can enter our lungs. This is how mould creates allergic reactions and asthma attacks.

In the best-case scenario, you will have frequent sneezes, itchy eyes, and a runny nose. The worst-case scenario is, unfortunately, death (we are not kidding), however, it can only occur in extreme situations and with specific types of mould such as Stachybotrys (also known as black mould).

Besides death, exposure to Stachybotrys can also cause memory loss, dizziness, lung bleeding, and hearing issues. Along with black mould, there are 4 other types commonly found indoors, but they are not as dangerous.

What Should you do?

The first thing you should do is inspect your home for mould growth. If you don’t notice any of the signs (we will mention them below), then definitely start doing some preventative measures early on. Think of adding energy-efficient windows and doors, improving insulation, purchasing ceiling fans, and unclogging gutters and pipes.

If you do notice mould, immediately contact professionals to remove it. Of course, if it’s a small portion, you can opt for DIY removal, but why bother yourself with such nasty fungi. Some situations will require more complicated procedures like changing sump pumps, window replacement, or installing new drywall.

What are the Signs?

Checking for mould growth should be done with the utmost precaution. Wear masks and gloves, and avoid touching it with bare hands. Sometimes the mould is hidden beneath floors, so you must be thorough in your search.

Besides walls, windows, and floors, mould can also be found in furniture, carpets, plant soil, wooden surfaces, fibreglass insulation, and even wallpaper glue. Here are the common signs you should look out for:

  • Reactions like asthma attacks, allergies, itchy skin, and watery eyes
  • An unpleasant, musty smell
  • Black, grey, brown, or green spots
  • Fuzzy white patches on floors
  • High humidity and water damage indoors

Knowing home improvement projects that add or do not add to your home could be quite tricky. Knowing which is reasonable to invest in to scale up the value of your home comes with a little experience. They could be as basic as a window replacement and complex as reinventing a room. Here are home improvement fixes you’d find “figuratively” beneficial.

Installation of Energy Efficient Windows

Window replacement from older to more energy efficient models could play into the consideration of prospective buyers. No one wants a window with a near-one-star beauty and functional rating. Energy conservation qualities of your window can have a significant effect on the value of your home especially in places with extreme weather conditions. Double panned windows, steel and fiberglass windows are the way to go here.

Restructure Your Kitchen

The kitchen is seen as a core aspect of every home. Remodeling your kitchen could go a long way. Buyers claimed according to a survey that is one of their three first considerations in buying any home. The average ROI for a kitchen remodel is 81% also depending on other factors such as your location. It’s more of like a perfunctory action to look into the kitchen for buyers. Have a window replacement done to it, expand the square foot, etc. If you want to scale up the value of your home, revamping your kitchen could be your epic start.

What Home Improvement Fixes Will Increase Your Home Value

Consider an Additional Bathroom

Creating additional bathrooms could give you up to 80-130% ROI on investment. Look for underutilized spaces in your house that could function as a bathroom. You need nothing less than 18-40squarefeet for a bathroom depending on the kind of appliances to install. And whether it’s a full-bath or half bath.

Revisit Your Landscaping

Landscaping is about one of the easiest and cheapest methods of earning value for your home. A few natural fixes like healthy flowers and trees and well-trimmed lawns will create an impression on your potential buyer and could scale up the value of your house. Planting trees, for example, will not only raise the value of your home but do so to neighboring houses. These fixes will increase your curb appeal. Real estate experts claim that landscaping can increase your ROI anywhere from 200%-400%.

They could be as basic as a window replacement and complex as reinventing a room. Here are home improvement fixes you’d find “figuratively” beneficial.

Adding Square Footage

Bigger rooms breed bigger value. Potential buyers never fail to notice this. More people usually consider more bedrooms even than their ideal family needs. You can consider removing a few walls just to enlarge the space or add another bathroom to increase the overall square footage.

Seemingly insignificant things sometimes count to buyers. Putting all these bits of information into practice can perform magic on the impression and decision of a buyer. They also impact on the overall cost of your property. Little wonder experts so much recommend these listed fixes.

Achieving a more energy-efficient home is a task that must be done to lower your energy bills, improve the level of comfort within the house, and help to reduce the level of fossil oil used to generate power on the global level. If you want to have a more energy-efficient home, read the guide below.

Enhance your Hot Water System Efficiency

Your hot water system is one of the appliances that consume energy in any home. As a result, make your hot water system more energy efficient by insulating the hot water lines so that they do not cool off quickly between uses. Also, use low-flow fixtures for baths and showers to reduce heat loss. You can also consider installing “on-demand” hot water circulating system in your home – it works with low-flow fixtures. This will reduce the amount of energy that your hot water system uses.

Boost Your Home’s Insulation

Effective insulation reduces heat loss at home in the winter or into the house during the summer. As a result, your HVAC will require less energy to heat or cool the house. Have your home assessed for effective home insulation – checking your walls, attic, and windows. Insulate your walls by caulking and blocking the cracks and holes and installing stud walls. Upgrade the insulation of your attic or loft. Boosting the home’s insulation is a wise investment that will save you money in the long run.

5 Effective Ways to Have​ a More Energy Efficient Home

Replace Incandescent Bulbs

Another way to have a more energy-efficient home is to replace all the incandescent bulbs in your home with LED bulbs, which use less energy and offer long-lasting, bright light. You would be able to save on energy use in your home.

Window Replacement

The first solution to having a more energy-efficient home is to undertake a window replacement project. Windows have always been found to be the leading culprit for homes without energy efficiency. Damages to window frames, warped and cracks in window glass allow draft into the house and make your home less energy efficient.

There is an extensive collection of energy-efficient windows on the market. Installing these windows will let you have a more energy-efficient home.

TuneUp the HVAC System

You need to ensure that your heating and cooling system is well-maintained to run efficiently at a peak level. This will save you money. Call an expert to service and tune-up your HVAC system for optimal and efficient performance without using more energy than necessary. Replace any appliance that cannot be tuned up for efficiency.

If you are a homeowner and do not know the benefits you can derive from basement waterproofing, this article is for you. Below are the reasons why you should consider waterproofing your basement.

Reduces Power Bills

Waterproofing your basement helps to lower the amount you pay monthly for electricity or power. During basement waterproofing, all the holes and cracks in the basement get sealed as well as any crevices found. This process ensures effective blocking out of the moisture and cold.

Besides, basement waterproofing prevents cold or warm air from getting out of the house because there will not be holes or cracks available any longer.

Why you Should Consider Waterproofing your Basement

Prevents Stores Item from Damage

If you use your basement mainly for storing items and materials, it can be an ideal store only if it is waterproofed. A leaky and moisture-filled basement would ruin items such as clothes, books, electronics, beddings, albums, toys, etc. By waterproofing your basement, you are ensuring that the items and properties stored in your basement would be preserved and in good condition. If your basement is flooded, it’s best to call a water damage restoration company to help clean up the mess.

Waterproofing your basement helps to lower the amount you pay monthly for electricity or power.

Curtails Long-term Health Risks

Water and moisture are crucial to the growth of potentially toxic moulds growing in the basement. Mould and mildew can cause damages to the respiratory system, headaches, itchy skin and eyes, a runny nose, and sneezing.

Why you Should Consider Waterproofing your Basement

The side effects could be mild or severe. When you waterproof your basement, you are doing a lot of good to yourself and family because you would be able to avoid health risks that moulds and mildew could cause due to a wet or damp basement.

Reduces Insurance Costs

Waterproofing basement is one of the ways by which you can reduce your monthly insurance premiums, especially if you have a policy that covers water damage, mould growth, and other related damages. Basement waterproofing would reduce these risks, and the insurer would offer discounts based on your basement waterproofing.

Protects the Foundation

In addition to protecting the interior of your home, basement waterproofing will also protect the foundation of your home against damage. The absorbed moisture is capable of cracking the foundation of a building. By waterproofing your basement, there will not be any inlet for water to compromise the structural integrity of the foundation of the house. The impact and financial consequences of a damaged foundation.

Know that seemingly little moisture in your basement is capable of causing big problems, waterproofing your basement is the best project to prevent all forms of problems that water seepage causes.

When shopping for a new window, it’s very important that you learn about durability, longevity and energy efficiency.

Old Age

As any material in our homes, with time windows completely lose functionality. Every manufactured and installed window out there has its own lifespan. However, it will mostly depend on weather conditions, amount of maintenance, framing material, and quality of the installation.

To find out whether your window is reaching old age, simply check your warranties and keep in mind these numbers:

  • Aluminum – 18 years maximum, a lot less if located near oceans and seas
  • Wood – an average of 30, can give up early if infected by rot and pesticide
  • Vinyl – maximum of 50, but everything depends on manufacturing
  • Fibreglass – can even reach 60 if not a victim of difficult impacts and storms

Time to Change your Windows

Obvious Damage

The second telltale sign of window replacement is obvious damage. Issues such as cracks, rot, leaks, condensation, and fallen parts are definitely signs that you need to add new replacement windows. Many homeowners try fixing such damages on their own.

Evidently, it’s a good way to save up on some money for replacements and professional repairs, however, it won’t address the underlying issue and won’t fix the damages entirely. Yes, rot can be removed with a hammer, but how long until it appears again?

Moisture & Mould

The most common reason for window failure is high moisture levels. After your home’s indoor air starts becoming unbalanced, tiny water droplets will start to appear on your windows and doors. If ventilation isn’t improved, these droplets will invite mould growth and pesticide in your home.

You can easily notice if you have dampness around your windows. It will start with interior condensation and quickly move onto rot, mould, and cold breezes. Running dehumidifiers won’t help at these stages since the windows will already be significantly damaged.

As any material in our homes, with time windows completely lose functionality

Time to Change your Windows

Failing Mechanism

Before you decide on the window style, you must learn everything there is about it. For instance, each type of window has its own flaws. About the time it reaches its age limit, certain situations might occur. One of them is a failed mechanism.

However, each type will fail at different things. With a double-hung, you might experience difficulties with the bottom sash while with a casement, you will face looseness and draftiness.

If you feel like your window is getting too old or too difficult to open and close, immediately contact experts and get the perspective of a professional.

Higher Bills

Last, but not least are high energy bills. The main role a window has is to protect you from cold breezes in the winter and heatwaves in the summer. When you find yourself turning on the furnace or the HVAC more often, give your windows and doors a visit and a thorough investigation.

Old, damaged windows let everything pass through them, including noise from the outside. This can also damage your energy bills since in this situation you won’t be having proper insulation. To get a better perspective: New vinyl windows won’t increase your bills. In fact, statistics shows how they can even reduce them by 15%.

Did you just purchase a resale home? Are you searching for top things you need to do when you move into a resale home? Do not stress out; here are the top things you must do before and when you pack into a resale home.

Change the Locks

Being a resale home, some people have previously occupied the home and have keys to the home. The best thing to do is to change the locks to the main entrances of the house to ensure that you are the only person who has access. You can call a locksmith or go for a DIY procedure if you have the knack for it.

Window Replacement

In addition to providing your home with a new look, windows replacement will also improve the energy efficiency of your home and make you feel comfortable. Window replacement is one of the top things to do when you move into a resale home.

Top Things to do when you Move into a Resale Home

Basement Waterproofing

Prevention is better than cure. You must prioritize basement waterproofing when you move into a resale home or expect to call a  water damage restoration company. Prevent water leakage in the basement and potential flooding. This way, you can rest assured that your basement is free from water damage, mould and mildew growth, and other attendant inconveniences.

Check for Plumbing Leak

During a home inspection, before you closed the purchase deal, the plumbing of the home must have been examined. However, you have to be sure that it is intact now that you will be using water and the entire plumbing system. Ensure that there are no leaks, and if there are any, have them fixed by a professional plumber.

Replace the Toilet Seats

Change the toilet seats to feel like the home is indeed yours and you would be free from worrying about what happened in it before you purchased the home. You can choose a detachable toilet seat to personalize the toilet.

Invest in Pest Control

Another top thing to do when you move into a resale home is to control the pests in the home. You do not necessarily have to know the level of pest activities in the house; hire a professional company for pest control to prevent rats, mice, roaches, spiders, and other pests from overrunning your home.

Get Familiar with the Circuit Breaker Box and Shutoff Valve

You must know where your breaker box and shutoff valves are located. Before you move in, see where the main water valves and gas shutoff valves are placed – this is essential for your safety.

Whether you are looking to upgrade residential or commercial roofing, metal is a material that must be considered. It is true that in the past people had certain worries considering metal shingles. Homeowners were simply more used to traditional designs such as those made from wood or tiles.

Today, however, the situation is very different. After passing a period of adaptation, nowadays buyers put metal as one of the top 3 available roofing materials. Here is why:

Extremely Long Lifespans

Most of us immediately go for the cheaper option. That’s why asphalt shingles are the most popular amongst buyers. Little do those buyers know that that cheap asphalt roof will have to be replaced after 15 years or so.

With a higher price, you get better quality and fewer worries on your mind. If the maximum lifespan of asphalt is 18 years, you will have to replace your roof at least 2 times in your lifetime. But, if you purchase metal roofing with a maximum lifespan of 100 years, chances are it will outlive your entire house.

What are the Benefits of a Metal Roof?

Strength and Resistance

One of the reasons why metal lasts so long is its strength. Experts say how after each severe storm, the number of metal roofs purchased significantly increases. And of course, it does!

When people see how their neighbour’s metal roof stays put during strong winds while their own tile or asphalt flies away, they will absolutely reconsider their construction decisions.

Even though it has certain flaws like denting due to temperature variations, metal is still the strongest material on the market today. Add extreme fire-resistance in the mix and there you have – the ideal material for your home!

Talk About Saving the Environment

Since “the rise of the machines”, we basically left our planet for dead. But let’s be honest here, long before Canadians started to become aware of energy efficiency and sustainability, Europeans were already putting certain methods in practice.

Today, however, the situation is very different. After passing a period of adaptation, nowadays buyers put metal as one of the top 3 available roofing materials.

That’s why metal roofing is still a subject of debate in Canada and the US, while it is actively installed throughout Europe. 25% of all metal roofs are made from recycled materials. Additionally, they are 100% recyclable themselves, extremely energy efficient, and are a perfect base for solar panel installation.

This is why this material should be especially considered for commercial roofing.

Powerful, but Lightweight

We already discussed all the wonderful benefits of metal roofs, but one can easily say how tile and slate have almost the same advantages. Yes, tile is strong, resistant, energy-efficient and eco-friendly. But, for basically the same price, with metal you will get additional benefits.

For instance, tile is a heavyweight material. This means that it isn’t suitable for every home. The house must have substantial strength in its structure to carry a heavy tile roofing.

Contrary to this situation, metal is lightweight. It can be adjusted to fit every type of home to that end that it can be also installed above an old asphalt roofing without doing damage to the foundation.