What You May Not Know About Fire Prevention

 

by Lou Manfredini, Ace's Home Expert

Since 1922, October is nationally observed as Fire Prevention Month.  It commemorates the Great Chicago Fire of 1871. Although we have come a long way since this tragedy, there are many American’ s who are still unclear on how to fully protect their homes.

What You May Not Know About Fire Prevention 

Understanding the most common causes of fire around the home and what you can do to protect yourself is a good place to start.

Common Causes of Fire

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) lists these as some of the most common causes of home fires:

  • Candles. Christmas, New Year’s Day and Christmas Eve are three top days for home candle fires. Why not try a safer alternative – LED candles glow just like the real thing and you can even find products that look like a real flickering flame..
  • Smoking.  It’s the leading cause of fire deaths in the U.S.
  • Cooking. Keep a watchful eye on what you’re cooking. Follow instructions by the book for electric and gas appliances and turkey fryers, grills and smokers. And take precautions to prevent scalds from overheated beverages, steam, and hot oil.
  • Portable generators and fireplaces. Fuel, electrical shock, open flame or carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning are some of the dangers associated with careless use of these devices.
  • Electrical. Overloaded circuits, shorts and unsafe wiring can put everything and everyone in your home at risk.
  • Heating. Not surprisingly, most home heating fires happen in December, January and February.
  • Dryers and washing machines. Lint build up can ignite in the venting and start a fire.
  • Flammables. Store gasoline, kerosene and paints in proper containers, keep them tightly sealed and store them away from heat and flame. Never store any of those items near a furnace or hot water heater.

Fire Prevention and Protection Basics

 

  • Install Smoke and CO Alarms Properly. You need at least one on each floor where they can be clearly heard in an emergency. Pay special attention to the manufacturer’s recommendations on where to place them. Humidity from laundry rooms or bathrooms are just one thing that can effect their operation. Test them once a month and keep the batteries frersh. Replace smoke alarms every 8-10 years and CO alarms about every 5 years..
  • Have your Heating Equipment Checked. Have your furnace serviced by a reputable inspector. When operating portable or fixed space heaters, be conscious to keep them away from items that could ignite, including drapes and articles of clothing.
  • Keep Fire Extinguishers Handy. Keep them on every floor to create an escape route if needed. Keeping an extinguisher rated for grease and electrical fires in the kitchen and garage is a good idea. Replace them about every 3 years, or if the dial indicates they need replacing. When your extinguisher expires, instead of throwing it out, use it to practice using one so you’re ready if an emergency happens.
  • Practice an Escape Plan. Map out a plan, practice it and tweak it if your run-through doesn’t work. You can find detailed information at www.nfpa.org.

 

For more helpful tips and advice, visit Tips.AceHardware.com.

 

 

What A Home Expert Worries About During A Home Inspection

 

by Lou Manfredini, Ace's Home Expert

So, you want to buy a house, make sure you look at it as if you were a home inspector. As a home expert, there are things about a home that keep me up at night. My list would be a make or break on whether the home you’re looking at is the right investment for you.

What A Home Expert Worries About During A Home Inspection

 

 

Buying a home is a big decision, and there are lots of things to consider.  Type of house, neighborhood, the price, location and so much more.  The decisions I just described are for you to approve.   As you look at a home keep the following in the back of your mind so when you fall in love with that house you must have you are making the purchase for all the right reasons.  Let me share with you key areas that you should dive into deeper if they come up in your home inspection list.

  • Consider the bones of the house first and foremost.
  • Is the foundation sound? If it has a basement, does it have an odor?
  • What is the age of the furnace/boiler and Air conditioning unit? Less than 10 years old is good.
  • What is the age of all the appliances, less than 10 years old in good repair is OK.
  • Is the roof in good repair and how old is it? The national average of a roof is 13 years.
  • Do windows and doors open and close easily?
  • Is the floor flat and level or does it lean?
  • Do all the cabinet doors and drawers open and close feely?
  • If the home has a deck or patio what is the overall look and condition?
  • What is the condition of the landscaping? Does the grass look good, are the bushes and trees healthy?
  • Walk across the street and look at the home from a distance and pay attention to the overall structure it should be standing tall and straight.
  • How does the overall home feel? Are handrails solid, do floors creak, can you hear outside noise through the walls?

 

Of course, you will have a home inspector look at the home before you close the deal but if half of the items above are a no then my advice is either get ready to pay to fix it all or find another house.

 

Are you in the kitchen and thinking, where is that water coming from?  Those puddles of water under your sink may be an indicator of a leaky pipe. In many instances, something just got loose when you were putting away cleaning bottles.

How To Prevent Kitchen Faucet Leaks

 

Get our 5 tips on how to prevent kitchen sink leaks

Do you know which cabinet gets the most use in your kitchen?  It’s typically the sink base.  That large cabinet that is jammed with all sorts of stuff in the most unorganized manner.  (I’m not judging).  My point is the reason it’s so wide open is for all the plumbing that’s in there.  Water lines, drain lines, a disposal, maybe the lines for an automatic dishwasher?  And because we shove stuff in there it’s not uncommon that you can jostle a few things loose and then a leak can occur that can be had to find.  Here are some tips to make sure you stay high and dry under the sink.

 

  1. Empty the cabinet. I promise, you’ll find things you never thought you had under there.  You’ll also find a bunch of things you can either recycle or throw out.
  2. Use a flashlight and inspect every connection point in the water and waste lines and use your hands to physically touch them as well to feel any wet spots.
  3. Tighten all the waste connections by hand if plastic and with a slip joint plier if metal. Do not over tighten just enough make sure things are snug, even if it’s not leaking that will ensure it won’t.
  4. Inspect the “P” trap that’s the “J” bend under the sink. If this is metal the bottom may be discolored and actually feel soft. That part should be replaced.
  5. Tighten all the water line connections with the proper sized wrench. Here too it’s important not to over tighten but just a snug pull to keep things sealed.  A pro-tip is to use toilet paper if you suspect a leak but cannot find it.  Place some around the leak point and under it on the base of the cabinet.  If it drips the paper will let you know.

    

5 Signs You Need To Replace Your Sump Pump

 

 

Is it time to replace your sump pump?  Here are the signs to look out for.  

  • It is making strange noises.
    • Sounds coming from your pump can indicate worn or damaged parts. Investigate your pump by checking all visible parts. 
  • Vibrates excessively when running.
    • Pumps that have sucked up hard debris can have their impellers bent or damaged. It is best to take pipes apart to assess if any replacements may be a viable option.
  • Infrequent pump usage.
    • If you dont use it, you lose it. The same goes for your sump pump. Check on all parts by running under surveillance for a few days. If things are running smoothly, no worries.
  • Runs all the time.
    • This does not necessarily mean it is time to replace. However, sump pumps last up to ten years. Be sure you are not over running yours.
  • Visible rust.
    • Brown corrosion can be visible and harmful to your pumping system. This can me bacteria build up or rust in the pipes.

3 Steps to Prepare Your Deck This Spring

Warm weather and sunnier days are approaching, and for many, it can’t come soon enough. Spring rolling around means transitioning to the outdoors, and your deck is the perfect spot in your home for guests to take in the beautiful season. With winter quickly coming to its end, is your patio ready to accommodate them? Take a look at three steps to ensure that it is.

1. Inspect the Structure

To prevent your outdoor gatherings from falling apart, make sure your deck doesn’t. Inspect the following key areas to make sure everything is in good shape. Wood close to the ground is susceptible to rotting; examine it by feeling to determine if it has become soft. Make sure joints and beams are stable, as well, and double-check for loose screws. Cracks along the patio should also raise concern. If your deck has any of these issues, contact your Craftsman right away to repair it for you. He will make sure it holds up under the pressure for your next gathering.

2. Clean and Re-finish

Winters can be rough on your home, and your deck is no exception. Use a leaf blower to remove some of nature’s clutter. Then take the time to power-wash your deck to get a deep clean. One of the best ways to make it glisten under the sun is by refinishing it. Head over to your local Ace and select a finish that will suit your deck. Refinishing and adding sealant will also help make sure your deck lasts longer. Once selected, you can call a Craftsman to add the finish while you focus on the next step of preparation.

3. Deck it Out

Now that your Craftsman has taken care of most of the steps, the last one is the best part. Decorate your deck just the way you like it. Add posts that hold freshly bloomed flowers. Arrange eye-catching patio furniture that will make your time outside very comfortable. Using bold colors while decorating will leave your guests impressed. You can even have a Craftsman install outdoor string lighting for a warm evening ambiance. There are many ways to take your deck to the next level. That is all you have to do to get your deck ready for the spring. Don’t let the opportunity to enjoy the outdoors this spring slip by. Call one of our reliable Craftsmen, and you will be out relaxing in no time.

Simple Ways to Improve Your Home's Curb Appeal

Early spring is the best time to get to those home projects done that have been pushed out too long. The weather is beginning to warm up, and everyone is thinking about the to-do projects they'd like to get on their calendar. Get your house looking great in time for the summer months so you can enjoy the warmer months ahead. Here are some simple DIY projects to get you thinking. But if you want some help, you can call us, or connect with us online at AceHandymanServices.com, and we'd love to do it for you.

Shutters

Shutters are a great accent for a home. Whether you install them or paint the ones you have, don't overlook this simple way to add real personality to your home. Shutters are quick to install, and you can personalize them to your style. There are also a variety of options. You can go with a rustic, Mediterranean, Victorian, or ranch as just some of the many choices. You can select a bold color for a unique twist, or stick with a classic. Ace Hardware has the primers and paints you need. If you are repainting, here's a great video Click here to help you do a great job.

Create an Outdoor Social Area

Spring means the start of spending more time outside. Create a space where you can enjoy the great outdoors. Install a porch swing or some outdoor seating areas that offer shade from the summer sun. Add some additional touches like a porch rug, comfortable patio furniture, and plants that reflect your style. This will help you and your family enjoy these spring afternoons even more. Before you start, here's a great video Click here to inspire you to get going.

Add Potted Flowers or a Garden

It doesn't spring without some fresh flowers. There are a variety of ways you can place them to add a natural pop of color to your home. Plant some along the front of your house. Or you can add potted plants, utilizing decorative pots. Maybe you want to start a garden, with a mix of perennials (flowers that come back every year) and the immediate gratification of annuals, those plants you buy that are in full bloom and stay that way all summer. First-time gardener? Here's a great video Click here to get you started.

 

Closet Doors Installation - Before & After

Here's another awesome before and after from one of our customers. They needed to install bifold closet doors and here’s the final before and after. Our goal is to amaze our customers and to provide a five-star service.

 

 

We are Your Home Ally for Essential Services

During these trying times, we hope that you and your families are doing well.  We are open and here to serve you as an essential business and trusted ally, helping you maintain the safety and essential operations of your home.   When you place your trust in us, your safety and that of our team are of vital importance.  We are following all applicable guidelines from OSHA, CDC, and local health authorities for your protection and ours, including adherence to personal hygiene standards, distancing with no contact, and daily monitoring of our employees' health.

We would love to get some projects done for you, especially if you need assistance while you are home during this time with a functional, health, or safety issue.  In addition to the many items we can handle inside your home, we can help you with outdoor projects now that Spring has arrived.  Examples include cleaning gutters, deck and fence repair, siding repair & replacement, power washing, garage door issues, door repair, and replacement, and door & window screen repair and replacement.

Give us a call at (240).331.5995 to discuss your needs and schedule an appointment

 

Carport Before & After:

How awesome is this before and after? One of our customers needed a carport installed as soon as possible and we were able to get it done right away!

 

 

Another WONDERFUL before & after

Here's another wonderful before and after photo from one of our customer's home project needs. We are always here to help with your business and home project needs. We are offering specials on our Half-Day ad Full-Day packages. To book your appointment today don't hesitate to give us a call at 240.331.5995.

 

 

Before and After Project

One of our amazing before and after swing installation. This swing is beautiful and gives the home a special touch. Call or book online today and our Craftsmen can help you with your home and business project needs. #AceHandhmanServices #AHS #Handyman #Craftsmen #RockvilleMaryland #Berniememes.

 

 

Leave Us Feedback!

 

Hello Everyone, it means a lot to us as a business to hear back from our community. If we've worked on your home, please consider leaving us a review! Thank you!

 

Your Clutter-Clearing Plan for the New Year

Click Here to Read Article

Start 2021 Off Right with a Clear Mind and an Organized Home

Let us help you declutter, Organize, and Tackle Your To-Do List Today! A New Year prompts motivation. It represents change. It's not only about the resolutions we've made heading into the upcoming year, but it's also about creating a fresh start. We offer simple, inexpensive home improvement solutions that will reduce what you have collected over the years and help organize your home. With our 2 hours, Half and Full-Day packages, our experts can help you get organized and complete your list of projects. It's time to do something about the mess and hassle! So, whether you're looking to install shelves in the pantry, expand closet space, build a storage system in the garage, or tackle your to-do list, our multi-skilled Craftsmen can do it all. Start this year off right with a clear mind and an organized home. Call or Book Online to Schedule Your 2 hours, Half or Full-Day Package Today! Call us or BOOK ONLINE TODAY!

 

Start the New Year off with some quick home improvement projects!

The holidays are in full swing, and with them, one of the most challenging years we've ever had to face. It's likely that with sheltering at home, your house saw more wear and tear in 2020 than in any other year up until now. This would be a great time to do a quick assessment of the things around your place that could use a touch-up or some repair.

We all dream of being more organized, don't we?
Get a fresh start in 2021. Get organized and clear out anything you don't need anymore, make your home more peaceful, and set yourself up for an awesome year.

 

 

Look For Us on the Road!!

We are EXCITED to introduce everyone to the new Ace Handyman Services Rockville truck. Thank you @mastergraphicspat you did a wonderful job.  Thank You Ourisman Chevrolet.  You'll be seeing us regularly on the road

 

 

Ace Handyman Services Rockville

1.  The benefits of hiring a screened contractor:

At Ace Handyman Services we put the customer first at all times. The safety of our customers is our top priority, which is why screen and complete criminal background checks, nationwide sex offender searches, and full driving record searches to all of our prospective craftsmen. When we send a craftsman to your home, they treat it with great care and respect. It is our commitment to treat your home, your family, your time, and your privacy with respect.

2.    Ace Handyman Services Rockville  - Helping you love your home, fire protection:

There is nothing more important than the safety of you, your family, your pets, and your home.  The dangers of a home fire are real, and oftentimes preventable.  Some tasks can be done around your home to help prevent a fire and in case your ability to stay safe and evacuate if one occurs.

*        Install Fire extinguisher

*       Replace/Install Smoke Fire Alarms/Check Batteries

*       Dryer vent cleaning and inspections

*        Fire escape ladders

*        Gutter systems

*        And many more!

         Call Ace Handyman Services Rockville today to discuss a Fire Prevention and Home Safety Plan Today!

 

Keep Safety in Mind While Decorating Your Home for the Upcoming Holidays

 

1.Light up the town Click Here


2. Even as we prepare to deck the halls for the upcoming holiday, don't let the holiday spirit so overtake you, that you forget to keep a few fundamental safety tips in mind!

Let' begin with the fireplace. This needs annual maintenance, with or without any holiday decorating taking place. Contact Ace Handyman Services Rockville to have it checked to prevent the build-up of creosote and other dangerous materials that can begin to clog your chimney, causing all kinds of hazards, including an unexpected fire. Never leave lit candles unattended, even if you are stepping out "just for a minute or two." Whether you are placing your gifts under a real or an artificial tree, here are some things to keep in mind-you'll need a sturdy and substantial tree stand that will support the trunk and eliminate any danger of the tree toppling. If you have curious pets or small kids, take extra precautions to anchor the tree in place. If you are buying a real tree, check it closely before purchasing. Stroke a branch or two with your hand, tugging very gently on the needles; if they are spilling off even before you get it home, the tree is past its prime and shouldn't be standing in a corner of your home drying out even further. As soon as you get your tree home, saw about an inch to an inch and a half of the base, which allows the tree to "drink" more easily. Keep the base thoroughly immersed in a few inches of water, checking daily to add more if needed. Check every string of lights carefully before hanging it, whether it's for use indoors or outside. Don't overload circuits with too many strings of lights. Employ some of the newer, portable power strips that come with a built-in circuit breaker that will trip and reset the switch if you overload the circuits. Use only good quality extension cords, UL approved and rated for whatever use you intend to put them to. And take care to tape them down or otherwise place them so that they don't create a tripping hazard. Many decorations will require the use of a ladder and not just any old ladder. You want one of solid construction and placed only on solid ground. Never stand on the topmost rung of the ladder, not even "just for a second." One second and one misstep are all it takes to send you toppling to the ground and ruining all of your holiday plans. And remember, it is never a bad idea to have someone standing nearby monitoring your progress when you are on a ladder or any other precarious location. Just a few precautions can make all the difference so you can be sure your holidays will be merry and bright. The professional craftsmen at Ace Handyman Services Rockville can get your to-do list done and make sure that your home is safely decorated for the holidays. Call us today to set up an appointment or a consultation at (240)-331-5995 or enter your zip code above to find a location near you!