Wall Mounting TVs

Technology has finally come far enough that we no longer need to fight with television sets that can weigh a couple hundred pounds. Now we have TVs that generally weight less than 75lbs. With this advancement in technology it is now possible to hang your TV on the wall and eliminate clutter in your living room, bedroom or anywhere else you have or want a TV. The trickiest part about wall mounting a television is deciding what to do with all of the "boxes" (cable, satellite, streaming, gaming, or sound system). Luckily there are numerous products on the market that can help with just that problem. There are shelves that you can mount on the wall which will handle all of the TV service or gaming devices but doesn't really help with that massive sub-woofer that comes with a sound system. Ideally you would want the sub-woofer to be placed on or as close to the ground as possible to allow it to attenuate the low frequency sound waves that it puts out. For homeowners with sound systems, it usually makes sense to have some sort of credenza or low cabinet to house all of the equipment. Whichever solution you choose, the wires can be hidden inside the wall which gives the appearance of a floating TV and an upscale feel to the room. I can help you decide which setup is best for you as well as implement whatever solution you decide to use. Give me a call today and we can go over the options. 

(315)715-8833

Preventative Maintenance can save money and LIVES

According to the National Fire Protection Association washers and dryers accounted for 16,800 house fires in 2010. 32% of these fires were determined to be caused by the lack of cleaning- that's 5,376 totally preventable house fires! Lint can build up inside the vent pipe running outdoors as well as in the dryer itself. If this is not cleaned, the heat produced by the dryer can ignite the buildup. In fact, some survival experts recommend carrying cotten dryer lint with you to use as a fire starter. In most cases it doesn't take long to clean the length of pipe or even replace it.

Many homes have "foil" duct going from the dryer to the wall (or further), however this is no longer the best option for ducting a dryer. It has many large ridges that trap lint and allow it to accumulate. It is also made of thin foil making cleaning difficult to do without damaging it. Other options to consider are either "semi-rigid" or "solid" ducting. Semi-Rigid duct is better than the foil because it has smaller ridges that do not hold the lint like the foil, and it is made of thicker metal which makes it easier to clean. Best practice is to use solid ducting wherever possible. Solid duct does not have any ridges within the duct, and allow the lint to freely pass through. Solid duct is also easy to clean without damaging it.

Lint buildup not only occurs in the vent pipe but it also can accumulate inside the dryer itself. Though most of the lint is channeled out through the vent pipe, a small amount can work itself around the screen and internal ducting within the dryer and cause a buildup.

All cases of buildup not only pose a fire hazard they also make your dryer work harder than it needs to, therefore wasting electricity and shortening the life of the dryer.

Don't become part of the statistics! I can clean or replace your duct work to keep you and your family safe.

(315)715-8833

Is your water pressure too high?

I recently had a customer who was having widespread pluming issues throughout her home. She had replaced the valves in three toilets, as well as the inlet valve in her dishwasher. I replaced the hot water inlet valve in her clothes washer, and she was complaining of pipes banging. I went and performed a water pressure test and found that her water pressure was 95 psi. Normal operating pressure should be in the 50-75 psi range, anything higher is just abusing your plumbing system and wasting water. I found that the house did have a pressure reducing valve, which is the device that controls the water pressure coming in. This valve appeared to have failed, and was causing the rest of her plumbing to take a beating. After replacing her faulty pressure reducing valve and setting the pressure to 75 psi, the pipes no longer bang and the appliances are less noisy. This should protect the appliances in the home for years to come and keep the repair costs down. The lower pressure will also help control water usage. If the pressure is too high then every time a faucet is opened the water comes rushing out and the volume of water becomes much higher than if the pressure were lower.

If you have toilets that run all the time or water pooling give me a call before more damage is done!

(315)715-8833

Protect the outside first!

Foundation crack

This allowed the water to run right out of the pipe and down the side of the foundation, ultimately running into the basement and the floor drain. I am thankful that the previous owner at least managed the water so it didn't collect in the basement and cause mold issues, but now the overall cost of the job will far exceed what it would have cost if they had found the source of the problem years ago.

 

This picture is from my foundation. Digging a 7' hole in clay is not fun! This was caused by a downspout from a gutter system that was not installed properly. We purchased our home in July of 2015 when the weather was nice and the landscaping was lush and green. The plants along the side of the house however blocked the signs of this damage from the home inspector. As I was walking around the house the following spring I noticed that the previous owner had patched the crack in the foundation that was above grade and never worried about what was looming underneath. Before the picture, I chipped off what little patch was covering the crack above ground. As you can see the crack has now spread all the way to the footer of the foundation and has even eroded into bigger holes in a few places. On the inside of the house the "repair" that was done was jack-hammering a trench in the floor of the basement to allow the water to flow from the gap along the wall to the floor drain. This was basically putting a band-aid on the issue and not really finding the source of the problem.

All of that could have been avoided if the downspout from the gutter was pitched and connected properly. The pitch of the pipe that was installed to bring the water away from the house was too low for the length of it. On top of the pitch being too low, it was ran through the middle of a bush. As the bush grew, it decreased the pitch of the downspout even further and exaggerated the issue already present. The pitch itself though was not what caused the problem. The real problem started because whoever installed the gutter downspout essentially crumpled the bottom pipe into the top pipe.

Crumpled fitting that allowed water to feed back.

Crumpled fitting that allowed water to feed back.

(315)715-8833

I can't repair your foundation but I can properly install downspouts so you don't end up with foundation damage.