3 Steps To Maintain Your Septic Tank

Your home probably has a septic tank if you live in an area without a city sewer system. Maintaining this system doesn’t take a lot of work if you practice good habits. Here are three ways you can care for your septic system, so it’s always functioning at its best.

1. Have the Tank Pumped Routinely

One of the best ways to maintain your septic system is to schedule regular maintenance. Many companies that provide local septic tank services Wise County TX recommend having the system inspected and sludge pumped every three to five years. They can check for any leaks or concerns during this time to help prevent a larger problem in the future.

2. Watch What You Flush

A septic system is more delicate than a city sewer and cannot handle paper towels and other bulky products.  The only thing that you should flush is toilet paper. Large items such as feminine products and diapers are too difficult for the bacteria in the system to break down quickly. This disrupts the balance of beneficial bacteria and prevents the decomposition of other items in the tank. If these items have accidentally been flushed, consider adding additional bacteria treatments to the tank to increase the amount in the system.

3. Clean Your Toilets With Natural Chemicals

Since the septic system relies on good bacteria to break down the particles in the tank, adding strong chemicals to your toilet kills off these bacteria. Cleaners with added bleach, ammonia or antibacterial soaps can disrupt the balance in the tank by killing off the necessary bacteria in the system. Instead, use natural plant-based cleaners and soaps. Stay away from drain clearing solutions, too, and use a plunger or snake for clogs instead.

Caring for a septic tank doesn’t require a lot of work. Monitor what is flushed and have the tank pumped routinely, and your septic system remains efficient.…

Preparing for a Cross Country Move

You’ve done it! You’ve scored the job of your dreams! The only problem is, the job is across the country, which means a move for you and your family. Here are some tips/tricks for a peaceful transition to a new city.

1) Hire a Real Estate Agent

Moving across the country means finding a new home, and a good real estate agent is key in this process. Agents across the country are available to assist you in finding a new home and are experts in the buying process; from securing a loan for your home to knowledge of the individual neighborhoods, a real estate professional is the best person to help you to find the perfect home for your needs.

2) Research Professional Movers

If the thought of moving all of your belongings cross-country is overwhelming, then hiring professional movers might be a good idea for you. Sometimes, employers are even able to assist with this expense. Long distance movers Minneapolis MN offer a variety of contracts and services; from packing your things for you to merely loading and unloading boxes and furniture, a moving service can be a great help in moving your belongings.

3) Be Strategic When Packing

Many people collect lots of useless things year by year, and moving is a great time to re-evaluate what you really need. Minimizing during the packing process is helpful, as that means you won’t have to unpack it and find a spot for it in your new home.

It is also helpful to strategize your packing process; many people label your moving boxes with helpful information. Boxes can be packed and then labelled with your family name, as well as the room in which the possessions belong, to assist with the unloading and unpacking piece.

Moving across the country is never easy, but with the right services in place, it can be a lot easier. These steps can help you to find and settle into a new home quickly and efficiently.…

Tips for Choosing a Great Real Estate Agent

Real Estate

Buying and selling real estate can be a long process, but these are some of the largest financial decisions you will face. A reputable real estate agent can guide you through the process and help you make the best financial decision for you. Before you start searching for local agents, e.g., Suffolk real estate, consider the following tips.

Set Your Goals and Secure Financing

Your first step should be to set your goals. For example, what type of house do you want to purchase? Get specific. How many bedrooms and bathrooms do you want? Do you want a large parcel of land or will a condo work for you? Also, calculate your budget, and stick to it.

Now that you have a budget, start contacting lenders to discuss their interest rates and loan terms. Choose a lender with the best terms and lowest interest rate, and apply for your mortgage loan. Once you are approved, start searching for a real estate agent.

Conduct some Research

Your first stop will probably be your friends and family members, especially if they have recently purchased or sold a home. You may also ask your banker, accountant and even the mortgage company. Look at the real estate signs in your desired neighborhood. What agency or agent is on them, and how long have they been on the market?

Next, investigate the agents. Are they members of the National Association of Realtors? Realtors must adopt high ethical standards and complete additional training. Then, investigate their online profiles and customer comments.

Meet With Your Prospects

Think of these meetings as interviews. Find out how many homes and buyers they represent to determine whether they have the time to help you. Also, ask how long their homes have been on the market. Find out about their experience in your desired neighborhood and community. You should also discuss their fees and record. Check their references and review any contracts carefully before signing.

Pay attention to their presentation. Look for details that suggest they care about your business. Did they ask enough questions to really understand what you are looking for, and did they provide suggestions or guidance?

If you are looking for a new home, do some homework and get the best agent available.…

Dealing With a Burst Pipe

Pipe

Dealing with burst water pipes is a huge pain, especially when it’s cold outside. Sometimes even the most careful planning and insulating is no match for Mother Nature. If you hear what sounds like a gurgling brook inside or outside your house once the weather is above freezing, it’s time to jump into action.

Turn Off the Water

Water expands when it freezes, but that isn’t necessarily where the pipe breaks. Just like all things under pressure, when the water warms up, it looks for a weak link in the pipe. The first thing you should do is turn off the water to the whole house until you can determine the location of the leak.

Find the Burst Pipe

Hopefully, finding the leak will be obvious. If you’re lucky, the damaged pipe will be in an accessible place outside the house, and you’ll recognize it because of the soggy ground. If you’re unlucky, it will be in a wall upstairs, and a saturated carpet may provide your biggest clue. After you locate the damaged pipe, keep looking because if you have one burst pipe, you might have several. Check the line leading to your tankless water heaters Pleasanton CA as well as your ice machine. Don’t forget pipes in the garage or basement.

Drain the Extra Water

To relieve pressure on the lines, turn on the faucets and drain the remaining water. Catch as much of it as you can since your water may be shut off for a time. It may take several days to contact a licensed plumber, especially if there was an extreme weather event that caused many pipes in the area to break. Any water you can capture can be used to flush toilets. You can also drink this water if the city isn’t under a boil water notice.

Document the Damage

Before you begin cleanup, take pictures of any damage the burst pipe caused for insurance purposes. Next, mop up excess water quickly to prevent mold or mildew from growing.

Recovering from a burst pipe is manageable if you act quickly to prevent further damage.…

3 Solutions To Keep Your Home Warm

The winter cold can be brutal and when that cold gets into your house, it can be expensive to keep it warm. Older houses tend to have lots of air leaks and drafts that are hard to block. If your house is cold and hard to heat, there are a few things you can do to keep it warmer without driving your heating bills up.

1. Install Insulation

Insulation goes in the gap between the interior and exterior walls and keeps the outside air from affecting the inside temperature. Insulation can wear out and become less effective over time and may need to be replaced. Some older homes were built without insulation. Pittsburgh fiberglass insulation is an effective way to keep out the cold and reduce your heating bills.

2. Close Your Curtains

Curtains are often considered purely decorative, but they can play an important role in keeping your home warm. While windows can let in sunlight during the day to help warm up your home, at night they can let in cold air. Older windows are especially bad at keeping the cold out. If you are not in a position to replace your windows, simply close your curtains at night. You will be surprised how much warmer your home will be. You can even install a curtain on your front door to keep out air that comes in around the frame.

3. Lay Down Area Rugs

If your home has hardwood or tile floors, you are probably aware of how cold they can get in the winter. That cold radiates through the house, making it colder. Adding area rugs adds an insulating layer on the floor and keeps your feet warm.

Keeping your home warm doesn’t need to be prohibitively expensive. While adding insulation is an upfront cost, over time it can save you a lot of money on heating bills. Area rugs and curtains are inexpensive ways to make your home more comfortable in the winter.…

Three Tips for Winterizing Your Home

As a responsible homeowner, it’s your charge to take care of the structure and its upkeep while you own it. This means making sure you have adequate insurance products as well as making repairs and upgrades as necessary. Another important responsibility is to make sure that your house is ready for the changing seasons, especially as the days get colder. Here are some ideas of prepping your property for the winter.

Check Your Heating Systems

The best time to check your heating system is when the weather is still warm. Some home warranty programs require homeowners to have their heating checked in advance of cooler weather. In addition  to getting a professional assessment, make sure that you replace the air filters for your furnace as dirty filters cause your system to work harder. If you have a fireplace, check for creosote buildup and animals that have decided to call your chimney home.

Protect Your Pipes

Freezing temperatures expose your home to the risk of burst pipes due to frozen water. Wrap your exterior pipes with insulation to keep water from freezing within. Keeping your faucets dripping and opening your cabinets to let warm air flow are two other ways to help avoid bursting pipes. You may have to shut off your main supply to avoid damage, so you should know where to locate the main line and how to turn it off. If you experience burst pipes, refer to a provider of water damage mitigation San Antonio TX for quick remediation.

Install Smart Thermostats

Smart, programmable thermostats make it easy to adjust your house’s temperature when it’s cold. It’s recommended that you keep your house at 68 degrees F or lower to keep from taxing your HVAC system. A smart thermostat can be controlled via your smartphone, wherever you are, to save money and conserve energy.

“Winter is coming” is more than just a popular TV show catchphrase. Make sure your house is ready for the colder weather with these simple tips. You’ll be glad you did ahead of time.…

Common Washer Machine Problems

Your washing machine is one of the most useful appliances in your home, and its malfunctioning can cause significant inconvenience. You may need a washer machine repair Carrollton TX when you notice the following issues.

The Wash Basin Does Not Fill

If water does not enter the basin when the machine is on, the water inlet valve may have a malfunction. Agitation without water could be due to a broken pressure switch that does not sense a lack of water.

Strange Sounds Are Coming From The Machine

Unusual sounds emanating from a washer machine could indicate an object trapped in the drain, drain line or water pump. Although it may be possible to clear the obstruction, a part damaged by a foreign object may require replacement by a washing machine repair service.

The Machine Is Vibrating

Vibration may occur if a laundry load does not have room to move freely in the basin during the wash cycle. Overfilling the basin may cause this problem when a weight imbalance causes it to shift.

The Dispenser Does Not Release Detergent

If your detergent does not release into the tub, you may be using the wrong type of detergent for your machine. Alternatively, the dispenser may have residue build-up that is preventing the release of detergent. A simple fix for this issue involves cleaning the dispenser regularly by filling it with distilled white vinegar and baking soda and running a fuller cycle.

The Machine Stops Suddenly

There may be several causes for a washing machine that stops unexpectedly. Although a simple problem like a faulty fuse is easy to address, other reasons can be perplexing. New model machines often have protective automatic shut-offs features that kick in when machines overheat, produce too many soap suds, or have malfunctioning hoses.

An appliance repair service is the best resource for diagnosing an ongoing or acute problem with your washing machine.…