Living in Louisville, KY, how would you rate the air quality in your home? Let us assume you already have some safeguards in place. A suitable carbon monoxide detector, smoke alarms and perhaps a radon detector as well. These devices are essential equipment for your home, but that is not the whole story.
There are other contaminants floating in the air you need to combat. You might be quick to say it would be dust, but even dust is again, just the most visible sign of poor air quality. Let’s take a look at some tips on helping to maintain good, breathable air as part of a best practices approach.
Clean Your Home with Non-Toxic Products
Cleaning agents, sprays and many other cleaning products we have been accustomed to are worth a second look.
Most may not be labeled as poison outright, but many solvents and cleaners do have toxic properties that could be harmful long-term.
One way to change this but keep a spotless home is to go green when it comes to the cleaning products you buy. Method, Seventh Generation, and Ecos are a few brands you can trust. They do not leave any chemical residue and are kid and pet safe.
Adopt Plants That Filter Air
Nothing like getting a little help in cleaning the air you breathe. How is your green thumb? Having plants in the home is never a bad idea. In addition to looking nice, some house plants do an excellent job of filtering the air.
They remove things like ammonia, benzene, formaldehyde, and xylene. You don’t want to breathe in those things. Some good plants include spider plants, which are easy to care for, and yellow mums are an air-purifying champion according to NASA research.
Allow Fresh Air Into the House
It may seem obvious but how about opening a few windows? It can be a catch 22 as it assumes the air outside your home is cleaner than the air inside.
However, moving fresh air through the house is cleansing and removes toxins that can change the ratio of what makes up the air in the house.
Even in the dead of winter, a 20-minute ventilation can do wonders. Be sure to open more than one window to facilitate airflow.
Periodically Change Your HVAC’s, Air Filter
When should you change the filter in your HVAC system? Well, when it is dirty of course. This is where we talk about dust and solid particles in the air.
Dust is just a part of the way the world works and as frustrating as it is, we are forever charged with keeping it to a minimum in the home. Your HVAC system is the first line of defense in making sure these things in the air are caught.
However, the more your filter catches dust and debris the harder your HVAC system has to work to move the air through your ducts that bring the house to the temperature on the thermostat. For cleaner air and a lower utility cost, go and check your filter and replace it.
Most Common Plumbing Emergency Calls
When do you call a plumber? There are times when one can think about whether a problem can be solved DIY. Depending on your skill level this can be a gamble. If you have a leaky faucet, that is one thing, but a pipe bursting in the middle of the night is quite another.
Then some scenarios fall in between that, depending on your experience level, could have you heading to the garage for your tools. Here are some of the most common plumbing problems and a little on what to expect:
As plumbing problems go, this is probably the most often and most annoying. If you have a toddler with a curious nature, then doubly so.
What goes down your toilet may have intentions of staying, causing you overflowing frustration. Should this happen when you are present, remember that cool heads will prevail. Just be quick to shut off the valve behind the toilet.
Tense up as the water level approaches the rim, and then a deep sigh as it stops just before it spills over. However, if this happens when you aren’t there to save the day, then you will need a few things.
First, shut off the water behind the toilet. Next get a mop and bucket to sop up the water before it does any damage or worse, leak through the floor to another level. Then get your plunger. After several repeats of this process and the toilet is still not flushing properly, something may be lodged in there good, and it may be time to call a plumber.
Sinks and bathtubs can be prone to clogging. Whether it is due to food or debris, the problem remains the same. The DIY approach is simple enough.
Try a plunger along with some commercial drain de-loggers from your local store. After a few attempts, it will be clear whether your efforts are working or not.
If it’s the latter, call your local plumber. They will have special tools to clear the drain quickly.
When Pipes Burst
In Reading, PA, winters can take their toll on older pipes in your home. If a pipe bursts, it could mean thousands of dollars in damages.
As emergencies go, this is one where you call a plumber right away without question. The more water that spills into the house, the more damage your home will suffer.
If this happens, know where your main water valve is and get to it quickly. That will stop the flow at least long enough for a plumber to arrive. The best you can do to prevent emergencies like this is to have a plumber do a spot inspection.
They may not be able to get into every potential place a pipe can burst, but the usual suspects may indicate whether you may need work done or not. Also, remember to talk to family members in your home about what to do if a pipe bursts and you are away. Keep a plumber number handy and in a place where everyone knows where to find it.
A drip in the night from the bathroom connected to your bedroom is causing you to lose sleep. This is before you get your water bill even. If you pull out the toolbox, you could give fixing it a go.
However, a leaky faucet may sound like a small issue, but it can turn out to be a slippery slope depending on several factors like ease of disassembly and the extent of the damage to the hardware itself.
If the washer has become unseated and needs replacing, you might be alright. Then there is the possibility of corrosion. If you are unsure of the situation, call your plumber. They will have the tools to handle most types of faucets and fixtures. You may be saving yourself from a lot of frustration.