Keep Water Away from your Home
While it can start as a seemingly minor problem, a drainage issue can cause bigger problems when it comes to the safety and integrity of your home's structure. Some signs of drainage issues include overflowing gutters, soggy ground, puddles of water, basement leaks, and mildew odors. It is important to take action immediately after these signs are detected because repairs can become quite costly. It does not take much water for foundational issues to arise, compromising the safety of your home.
There are some easy fixes when it comes to drainage issues. Make sure your gutters are free from leaves and debris. Falling leaves can clog gutters, forcing the water to go towards your home. Emptying your gutters allows them to do what they were designed to do. Gutter cleaning can be a hassle, but consider installing gutter guards after they are cleaned. Gutter guards are inexpensive tools that prevent this buildup for years to come. Check out this gutter guard: (https://www.acehardware.com/departments/building-supplies/roofs-and-gutters/gutter-guards/5408091)
Another solution that helps lead water away from your home is installing downspout extenders. These extenders can be modified in many ways to ensure no water is reaching your home. Make sure downspout extenders are directed away from your driveway. They can also be connected to drainage pipes or catch basins. Look at this downspout extender:(https://www.acehardware.com/departments/building-supplies/roofs-and-gutters/gutters-and-downspouts/5106158)
It is also important to make sure your ground is sloping away from your home. If you notice pooling, it is possible the slope of your yard is not steep enough to guide the water away from your home. An easy way to solve this is to fill gaps with a granular soil that will guide the water away from your foundation; make sure the soil is not absorbent. Adding just a small amount of soil can make a large difference in redirecting the path of the water.
Use these tips to ensure water stays out of your home!
Prepare your Home for Hurricane Season
Hurricane Season is here, and it is not going anywhere. These summer storms often leave disastrous affects to homes. It is important to prepare your home for these storms in order to minimize the damages incurred.
Clean your gutters- Clogged or blocked gutters prevent the gutters from working properly. The water will not be able to drain as designed and will accumulate, weighing down the gutters. This can potentially lead to roof and foundational damage.
Extend downspouts at least six to ten feet away from your foundation- With hurricanes, comes a lot of rain. It is important that the high levels of water are not directed towards your home. This could cause major foundation damage and can cause flooding.
Seal your windows and doors- Reinforce and seal your windows and doors to prevent water from seeping in. Windows and doors are especially vulnerable during high winds. Sealing windows and doors also helps with energy costs.
Secure Potential Debris- Flying debris is the leading cause of structural damage during storms. It is important to secure lawn furniture and trim low hanging branches as they can be carried by the wind and cause damage to your home.
Storms are unpredictable so sometimes, even with these precautions, damages happen. Don't panic because we are here to help! Call us today at 410.549.9696, and we are happy to help repair any storm damages to your home.
Repair The Little Things So They Don’t Become Big Things
Small signs can potentially become big trouble at home and ignoring them could end up costing thousands of dollars in repair. Taking care of small repairs before they become big ones will save you a lot of money in the long run.
A common problem that is easy to ignore is a damp basement. Leading to mildew and mold, water leaks should never be left unaddressed. If the problem is caught early enough, the solution may be as simple as installing gutters and downspout extension to run water away from your home. If left untreated, you may have to replace the flooring and drywall completely, potentially costing an arm and a leg.
Another small issue that is often left unnoticed is clogged gutters. Clogged gutters may lead to foundation and wood damage. This is due to the water being directed towards the home. Because your roof sustains damage every time it rains, clogged gutters can shorten the lifespan of your roof. Additionally, the landscape surrounding your home will become compromised, ruining your beautiful flowerbeds. Cleaning your gutters twice a year is a simple solution to this problem.
Loose or rotted deck boards is another problem that is often ignored; when left undealt with, the rot will spread, leaving the deck unsalvageable. A new deck can cost upwards of ten thousand dollars. It is important to replace the rotted sections as soon as possible and apply a water-resistant coating over the entire deck to prevent future damage. The coating will refresh the deck and make it look new.
If any of these issues are spotted in your home, give us a call and we will take care of them right away before they cause disaster to your home and bank account.
We are here to Help!!
Do you have a home emergency, a small project that needs to get done, or maybe quarantine has caused a couple of home issues to come to light? We at Ace Handyman Services are here to help!
As your trusted home ally, your safety and that of our team is of most importance. We are following all guidelines and mandates from the CDC and local health authorities for your protection and ours. We have taken the Maryland Strong Back to Business Pledge and are adhering to the most recent guidelines. Our safety measures include wearing face masks, shoe covers, and disposable gloves. We are following CDC social distancing standards while in your home, and always disinfect the area before and after our work is complete.
We would love to get some work done for you! In addition to in-home projects, we are more than happy to help with outdoor projects such as deck and fence repair, gutter cleaning, siding repair, and much more.
Visit acehandymanservices.com or call us at 410-549-9696 to learn more about our services. Thank you for your business and we hope you and your loved ones stay safe during this time!
New name - same office!Well after 16 years of serving clients as Handyman Matters, here in the Baltimore Metro, our name has changed. We are proud to be part of the Ace family and are now called Ace Handyman Services. Please know that we still have the same amazing Craftsmen and office staff. Ace Handyman Services will bring the helpful to your home!
Handymen You Can Trust
When hiring a handyman to perform work for you, take caution to avoid any possible horror stories that could occur. It is important to ensure that you are hiring a trusted professional to take care of your jobs. Some people have spent up to $900 upfront for a $1300 job and the only thing they received for that payment was a half painted wall and a disappeared handyman. You do not want to be a victim of such a story, it happens much more often than you would probably believe.
What do you do?
Ask what the Handyman’s skills are, don’t ask a carpenter to do a plumbing job and vice versa. More times than not you will have to call an actual plumber to fix the job the handyman never knew how to do in the first place, which is just going to cost you more money than you originally planned to spend. Also, don’t allow the person you hired to send a replacement without your permission.
How do I find a good handyman?
Checking with friends and neighbors is a good start; see what people they may have used in the past. Ask your local hardware store, often times they will have connections to handyman that shop there frequently. Look for someone who is experienced and has been in business for a few years, seek references and actually contact the people.
What work needs to be done?
Before you contact any handyman make a detailed list of what jobs you want to have done and then provide the worker with a copy of said list. Ask about pricing, some charge by the hour; others by the job. Minimum fee? If so, how much. Make sure the handyman does a walkthrough of all the tasks you want done.
Know your handyman!
Get the handyman’s full name, phone number, and street address. Any necessary contact information so that if the job goes bad you can contact the person and go from there. Handymen are required to have a “Business Tax Receipt” from the county or city they operate in, ask to see that and a current insurance liability certificate. Don’t pay anything upfront, unless it’s for materials. Don’t hire a handyman to do major home repairs, for that you will want to hire a certified contractor.
Get it done!
Now that you know the various steps to ensure you hire a trusted competent handyman, go out there and get the list of jobs done so you can love your home!
Preparing Your Home for Homebuyers: 10 helpful tips
There are plenty of homes on the market as of right now which gives homebuyers many of options to choose from. When buying a home, buyers are looking for nothing but the absolute best so if a home is not in great condition it can easily go unnoticed by buyers. Here are 10 tips you can use to get your home in the right shape and really amaze potential buyers:
2.Redo your landscaping: The first thing that buyers are going to notice before stepping into that house is the property it’s on. Curb appeal is very important when making a first impression.
3.Clean the exterior: To homebuyers a dirty exterior equals a dirty interior. Make sure to clean the gutters and power wash the siding to make your house look as good as new.
4.Make the front door appealing: Apply a fresh coat of coat that contrasts with the rest of the house to really make the front door pop!
5.Add a welcome mat: This will make them seem welcome and invited.
6.Remove any clutter and depersonalize: Buyers want to be able to picture anyone living in your home, so having all of your belongings there will get in that way of that vision.
7.Organize your belongings: A messy home gives the impression that the home doesn’t have much storage space.
8.Brighten up every surface: Clean every aspect of your home till you can’t clean anymore!
9.Neutral Colors: Neutral colors appeal to a wide range of buyers.
10.Eliminate any bad odors: When showing off the house be sure to hide any liter boxes or dog cages to eliminate those bad smells, put out a fresh batch of cookies to make your home more inviting
Weather-Stripping: Save a Fortune Today By Sealing Your Windows and Leaks
What’s To Gain?
Did you know that you could be completely unaware of your homes leaks? Often times homes leak the temperature controlled air, sometimes just closing your windows and doors isn’t enough to protect your house from the outside weather. There are little hidden gaps around door frames and windows, between baseboards, floorboards and by outlets that can all let out your heating or cooling which is costing you a lot of money in the long run.
As much as 5-10% can be saved on your energy bill. On average you can save about 7.5% on your monthly payments just from sealing air leaks with weather stripping and caulking. This’ll give you at least $48-$138 extra in your pocket for anything you can think of.
How to fix the leaks!
There are varying methods to dealing with leaks in your house: Weather stripping and caulking works very well for smaller holes. For bigger holes spray foam or other insulation will most likely have to be done.
Sadly, repairing a leak won’t last forever. Over time the insulation can start to bring in the weather, so you’ll want to take note of where gaps and leaks are likely to occur such as:
- Around electrical outlets, boxes, or other items cut into the wall.
- Between the wall and the floor.
- Around plumbing as it enters a room.
- Gaps in the attic or basement.
- Around the attic door.
- Around the chimney
- Around built-in light fixtures, particularly on the ceiling.
- Around windows and doors
You can save money and the environment with just a couple DIY projects! It won’t even leave a dent in your wallet as most of the materials can be bought at a hardware store for less than $20-$30. So clear up that calendar and make some time for a weekend project and save yourself some cash!
If you believe the work is out of your skill range or you simply want to make sure the job is done right try to contact professional help so they can assist you in finding where the air is escaping your house through an inspection.
Don’t be a prisoner in your own home
For someone who is restricted due to a wheelchair, getting in and out of their home without a ramp and be a problem. Deciding between a wooden ramp and a metal ramp can be a big problem as well, but we’re here to inform you on the differences in the ramps. Wooden ramps are usually meant to be a permanent ramp and do require a permit to put in your home. They are more durable then metal but do require more maintenance compared to the metal. Wooden ramps will also require some sort of anti-slip grip to be attached to the ramp to make sure there are no problems when it becomes slippery due to snow or rain. Metal ramps are more modular and can be fit to any space. They also can be moved easily and are not a permanent attachment to your home. They have grooves built in that allow for traction for the wheels. While both ramps can be used to get someone in and out of their home with ease. Wooden ramps are more expensive to build and maintain compared to metal. But with that being said wooden ramps are permanent. No matter whether the ramp is wooden or metal, someone who is wheelchair bound deserves to be able to freely leave their home.
Severe Storm Essentials Guide
If you see that a severe storm in heading to your area, you need to make sure your home is ready for anything it may throw your way
Generators: Generators can help keep power in your home even when the main power is out. For the most power we suggest a Home Standby Generator which can hold 7,000-60,000 watts
Water: You are going to want to make sure you have plenty of water bottles in case the water goes out. On average you’re going to want about one gallon per person per day of water.
Flashlights: When the power goes out you are going to want plenty of flashlights to help you see. Make sure you also get extra batteries in case the batteries in the flashlight die.
Gas: Having a backup supply of gasoline is very important. You are going to need gas for your generators, cooking appliances like a grill, and any tools that you may need like a chain saw.
First Aid Kit: A first aid kit is a necessity in your home no matter what the circumstances are. Make sure to have one on the in case anyone gets injured during the storm.
Hand Radio: Hand radios will allow you to get any radio waves telling you about the storm and the location of it. These are important to make sure you know what is happening in your area.
Summertime Exterior Maintenance
Protect you Deck!
- Check for any rotted wood on your deck and have them replaced to keep your deck healthy.
- Look for cracks and loose nails that may be dangerous when walking without footwear, hammer any loose nails.
- Pour a little water on your deck, if it forms into tiny puddles you are good, but if it sinks into the wood you may want to think about getting your deck water sealed.
Stop tiny home invaders
- Cover any hole more than ¼ inch wide to stop any bug from crawling through.
- Get tree limbs trimmed back so no fury friends can make their way into your home. We want a squirrel free home!
- Tightly cover any outdoor trash or recycling cans to prevent any animals from getting into them looking for food.
- Remove any debris from your yard that may become a new home for future home invaders.
- Mow. Your. Lawn. Not only will it help prevent bugs and rodents but it helps keep your yard clean and healthy.
Get Your Home Summer Ready!
Replace your A/C filter: Your air conditioning filter should be changed on average, every one to three months; to make sure it works efficiently.
Clean your dryer vent pipe: Over time lint can start to build up in the pipe causing the dyer to work less efficiently and potentially cause a fire.
Clean ceiling fan blades: Make sure to clean the blades to remove any dust or dirt, make sure you especially get the top of the blades. The top blades tend to hold the most dust and are rarely cleaned.
Clean your grill grates: It is very important to clean your grill grates before your first use and throughout the summer. You can use vinegar, ammonia, or grill cleaning solution to properly clean your grill.
Remove Mold and Mildew: Removing mold and mildew can be done by using a solution using bleach and water (the solution should be a 1-10 ratio between the bleach and water, but more bleach can be added for the desired strength).
Check sprinkler system: Check for leaks or cracks in your sprinkler system to prevent any water damage from happening to your lawn.
Spruce up your home with theses spring tips!
Mosquito Prevention: To help keep these pesky bugs away, look for any standing water on your property in flower pots, wheelbarrows, etc. These can be a breeding ground for mosquitoes; these items should be stored upside down to prevent any water from filling them up.
Look for cracks in your concrete: The constant thawing and refreezing of concrete can take a toll on it. Check for any cracks or holes that need to be repaired to prevent any harm.
Clean out trash and recycling bins: Use your outside hose to spray off and gunk that is stuck at the bottom of the bin. Then pick your favorite scent of air freshener and spray it inside the bin, to help keep the fresh smell last.
Change batteries in safety devices: Make sure you change all smoke alarm and carbon dioxide alarms, make sure to test them after to make sure they are working properly.
Schedule maintenance on A/C system: A well running a/c system will not only save you money by using less energy, but keep you cool all spring and summer long.
Test sprinkler and irrigation systems: Make sure you don’t get a sunken garden by testing and making sure everything works.
Wash your windows: Keep your windows clean by removing all the dirt from the windows, keeping them shining clean to allow all the sunlight into your home.
Clear out the garage: If you can’t fit in the garage (or if it’s a tight fit), clean your garage to make room and organize all of your belonging. Think about adding wall-mounted storage to save even more room.
Wash the siding of your home: Remove all of the dirt and pollen from your siding by using the hose and a siding cleaning kit (which can be found at most stores) to safely clean your home.
Clean your gutters: Make sure these are clean, and if needed repaired, to help remove the water from your roof safely without causing any damage to your roof.
Maintain wood decks and fences: Keep your outdoor woodwork looking brand new by staining or making any needed repairs to keep the wood healthy.
Which ramp is the right ramp for you?
When deciding which kind of ramp you should purchase to help someone with a disability safely get in or out of a home, these are some of the factors you should think about.
How much ramp is needed?
When trying to figure out how much ramp you need for you home, you need to know how many inches high are your steps. The American with Disabilities Act states that for every one inch of height, there must be 1 foot of ramp. So if you stairs are 24 inches high, you would need 24 feet of ramp
When comparing the prices of a wood ramp versus an aluminum ramp. The wood ramp would usually cost anywhere from $3,500-$8,000 on top of the man hours needed to build. While aluminum ramp would cost about $3,000-$5,500.
On average a wood ramp would take about 2 days to 1 week to build depending on the size of the ramp and the weather. The aluminum ramp takes only a fraction of that time; it can be done in less than a day.
Both ramps are going to need maintenance at some point just like anything would. The wood ramp would have to be clean regularly and must reapply a stain or sealing product. Aluminum on the other had is very durable and would not have to be replaced for several years.
Wood itself can be quiet slippery when it becomes wet which can be a danger for someone in a wheelchair. Traction pads can be added to the wood but this would cost an extra amount of time and money. On the aluminum ramps the traction is built into the aluminum that allow the wheels to safely move and not slide.
As you know, Maryland weather is very unpredictable and can cause all sorts of problems. In cases of snow or ice normal rock salts should not be used on wood or metal ramps, a cost effective way to fix this problem is using kitty litter to help with the traction of the ramp. Aluminum ramps will be more durable to the weather and stay safe while wood ramps become slippery in the snow or ice.
Modular or Portable:
This is mainly for a preference as it depends on how long you would like to have the ramp in place. Once a wooded ramp is built, there is no taking it down without destroying the ramp, so they are meant to be a long-term ramp. Aluminum ramps can be moved or collapsed to be stored away for when they are not needed, they also can be left out for as long as they are needed. This allows for easier movement of the ramp if it is only needed a few times a year.
Get your home ready for spring with maintenance tips
- Check all electrical outlets, fuse boxes, and extension cords to make sure they are not cluttered to prevent fire hazards
- Have your air conditioning unit inspected by a professional
- Check your water heater for leaks or corrosion
- Clean or replace your furnace filter
- Replace batteries in smoke detectors to make sure they are working properly
- Clean from under the dryer and exhaust duct
- Replace any high-intensity light bulbs with fluorescent light bulbs to help reduce the heat produced from the bulbs
- Check your roof for any damages that may be visible
- Clean your gutters to stop the debris from building up
- Clean up dead trees and broken limbs from yard
- Trim healthy trees and bushes, make sure they are away from utility wires
- Repair cracked or uneven driveways to maintain a level walking surface
- Clean windows and check for any cracks
- Look for any splits or warped boards on your deck
Doing the small jobs around your home to help prevent any bigger issues in the future.
Love your bathroom again with quick affordable updates
Update your lighting fixtures
Updating the lighting is way to liven up your bathroom. Add a new mood to your bathroom by changing the brightness of the light. Also changing the lights to LED lights is one way to save money on the utility bill.
Change faucets and shower heads
Freshen up the look of your bathroom with new faucets that not only look sleek but cut the water consumption being used. Shower heads can be replaced to create a whole new shower experience while also showing your creative style.
Paint your bathroom walls and trim
Repainting a bathroom can open up the bathroom and allow you to truly design the dream bathroom that you have always wanted. Selecting a color that matches your vanity, faucet, and hardware can help bring out the personality of the room.
Replacing the bathroom fan
New bathroom fans not only look more fashionable but have more function as well. The newer bathroom fans not only get rid of the moisture in the room but are quieter than the older models.
Updating your vanity
Vanities are a great way to show style and personality to your bathroom. Additional storage and uniqueness can be given to your bathroom with the updated vanity.
Replacing the toilet and toilet seat
While people may think that toilets are just for the function, newer toilets add more style and efficiency that older models. Newer models can help save on water consumption and be adjusted to any height. Newer toilets seats help prevent slamming and shifting of the seat.
Ace Handyman Services named one of America’s Best Customer Service Companies By Newsweek
Ace Handyman Services is being recognized as the top brand in home referral services and home repairs category as a part of Newsweek’s inaugural list of America’s Best Companies for Customer Service. We give this honor and recognition to the focus of our owners have placed on Customer Experience & Becoming the home ally.
Five Evaluation criterias were:
� Quality of communication
� Technical competence
� Range of services offered
� Customer focus
The independent study used data from multiple samples of more than 20,000 US customers and a total of 132,954 customer evaluations collected.
The Maryland location for Ace Handyman Services has been open since 2004 and takes great pride in customer service. We are a customer service business that fixes things. Brian Wigutow and his team have been focused on exceed their client’s expectations and try to make every customer thrilled with every experience.
Committed to help your you love your home, we are locally owned and independently operated our locations which provide professional and multi skilled Craftsmen trained to handle a homeowners tasks in addition to larger, more critical projects like a bathroom refresh or remodel. At the end of the day, “We Do It All!”
Ace Handyman Services make sure our work and offers a “like it’s our home” Promise. Check why Ace Handyman Services Differ from its competitors.
GETTING YOUR HOME READY FOR THE WINTER!
How to Prevent a Hose Bib from Freezing
The Hose bib/ Faucet is located on the outside of your home. In the winter season the tap and pipes can easily freeze and cause damages to the pipes causing them to burst. If you follow these four easy steps you can prevent this from happening during the winter season.
Step 1 – Turning off the Valve
The first thing you want to do is find the hose bib, Follow the pipes from the tap to the valve and make sure you completely shut it off. Make sure to check if the valve is tightened and water cannot enter the external hose bib.
Step 2 – Removing the Hose
Next, remove the hose from the spigot and make sure it’s empty of water. Tip the water out of the section of the pipe until it’s completely gone. Then store the hose in your home or garden shed.
Step 3 – Draining the Hose Bib
Even if you shut of the valve to the water in your home, there are still water inside the pipes. It's important to get rid of all the water, so there no chance of the pipes freezing and causing damage. To get rid of the remaining water turn the tap on and let the water run out and down the drain, if the bib is faulty replace it before you continue.
Draining bleeding valves
Most valves are “Bleeding valves” if o you can use it to remove even more water. Remove the small bleeding cap and place a bowl to catch any leftover water.
Step 4 – Leaving the Valve Open
Lastly, leave you tap open, and put the bung back in the bleeding valve. Completing this step ensures that if the water would enter it would just run out and not freeze.
Make sure to leave your hose like this during winter. When it’s summer again and you want to use it, switch the shut off valve on, and let the water run out. If you want the bib to never freeze, install a frost-free bib
How and Why To Seal Grout Small Tasks will save you big money in the long run!