Cfcaobi House & Home

Informing about Home Improvement and Design

Month: October 2016 (page 1 of 5)

Ipe Decking Is Great For Home Improvement & New Deck Designs

One of the most popular wood choices seen throughout modern architecture is ipe decking. When you browse through popular architecture and home magazines, you are bound to see many wonderful homes. These homes tend to feature the latest in technology, architectural design concepts, as well as, innovative ways to use various construction materials. Also, as Green Building gets increasingly popular, you will also see how home designers and builders are utilizing eco-friendly materials.

There are many advantages to choosing ipe wood in modern architecture. Ipe decking:

1) Has a clean and sophisticated look
2) Provides great versatility in many applications
3) Is the best “all-in-one” wood available
4) Can be aged to a silvery patina
5) Can keep its reddish-brown color with deck oil

When used as a decking application, ipe (pronounced ee-pay) wood is truly the best “all in one” material. This exotic hardwood doesn’t require chemical treatments and naturally repels insects. This characteristic is available because ipe has an extremely tight grain and natural oils. The combination of those factors makes the wood so dense that it won’t float when placed in water. The density of ipe also means that it won’t have the same problems that other lesser grade decking materials are prone to. Ipe is very resistant to mildew, mold, fungus, wood rot and decay.

You can also see designers and architects using ipe wood in various other applications including, siding, flooring, sunrooms, and porches. It’s also not uncommon to see an ipe rainscreen covering a whole building. This versatility provides designers with new and unique ways to use hardwood. Online magazines such as The Contemporist and classic magazines like Home & Design showcase ipe even in fencing, doors, and interior paneling.

Another great reason why modern architects and designers choose ipe is due to the richness of its color. Depending on the application and the designer’s stylistic vision, ipe wood can be allowed to mature seamlessly into a silvery patina. This weathered look makes outdoor areas appear regal and yet still very sharp. Remember, the characteristics of ipe; density, tight grain, and natural oils. This combination keeps ipe from having knots and slivers. So, while the wood ages, it maintains that sharp appeal. Also, if a modern home’s design uses a lot of metals, a silver ipe deck would be a nice and fitting compliment. Allowing ipe to age isn’t the only choice.

The luster of its natural reddish-brown color can be treated with deck oil. This simple ipe decking maintenance can ensure that the warm colors remain for many years to come. Using a deck oil to treat ipe will also boost its lifespan due to the increased protection from ultraviolet rays. Decking oil also offers increased protection from water damage.

Ultimately, it’s because of these characteristics that ipe has earned a reputation as the best wood for the money. Not only is ipe one of the most feature-rich woods, but it has also been recognized as a safe decking choice as well. The National Fire Protection Agency has given this hardwood the same Class A rating that both steel and concrete also have for fire spread!

If you’re going to choose ipe decking for your home, be sure that you’re using a lumber company that practices and promotes sustainable forestry. Ask, “Do you buy wood from managed forests?” Also be sure to ask, “Are you certified by the Forest Stewardship Council?” If the answer to both of these questions is yes, you can rest assured that you’re buying the best wood for your home and that it has been sustainably harvested.

Merits Of Ceramic & Tourmaline Flat Irons Some Facts

Only lucky girls are born with natural straight, silky shine hair. But you are luckier now to style even the curliest frizzy hair to achieve this look using a flat iron. If you have a high quality styling tool with you, you can accomplish any hairstyle of your favorite celebrity as you like from the very comfort of your home. Moreover, they can be done within a matter of seconds and are highly safer than other chemical treatment methods.

With the introduction of ceramic plated and ionic tourmaline technology flat irons, acquiring a straight, shiny locks are never difficult. Moreover, it has enabled us to save the time required to visit a hair salon on regular basis. If you make a one time investment on a hair straightener today, you can keep changing your looks everyday without much time. With the new technological advancements, lots of amazing features have been added to an ironing device that makes it highly professional and worthy for money invested.

Flat irons have replaced the traditional hair straightening methods like the chemical and permanent hair straightening treatments that are not hazardous for your hair, but also highly expensive to be afforded by common people. But in case of stylers, you can shop your favorite product as per your unique preference and budget from hundreds of hair styling tools available in the market.

Other than choosing a cheap one to save some bucks, why not spend a little more for a professional grade styling tool like a Corioliss flat iron that should prove to be worth the price owing to its innovative features and efficient working. Integrated with ceramic and tourmaline technologies, these models are made with 100 % safe heating plates that offer super straight and shiny hair without damaging your hair cuticles. Since ceramic plates emits a number of negative ions it offers even distribution of heat on your hair, thereby offering gentle and safe application. While eliminating frizz and damaging spots, these tools retain the natural moisture of your hair without drying out the hair. While heating quickly, tourmaline technology actually helps in enhancing the health of your hair, thereby leaving them moisturized and shiny.
Ceramic flat irons are also capable of customizing the amount of heat they produce. This enables in offering better results in a shorter amount of time. Ceramic plated ionic tourmaline models are the best flat irons recommended by professional stylists in their salons for healthier and beautiful hair.

How to Maintain Your Plumbing System

Owning a house is not easy and everyone has to experience the -joy- of having a Luton plumber fixing their system at least once in their lives. But if you don’t want to turn these visits into regulars here are some measures that prevent this and can be of great assistance when you want to control the cost of these expenses. Once you take these measures into account, your plumbing system will thank you and your house would look much better. Detecting leakage

It doesn’t matter the size of the leakage, but what is really important is to detect it as soon as possible in order to prevent further issues. Those leakage problems that remain undetected and untreated for a certain period of time are bound to generate expensive repairs. These can be found almost everywhere but most often, they appear in the bathroom and kitchen fixtures.

Insulation

Another good idea would be to control those places that are not proper insulated because this way your pipes are often more exposed to corrosive factors. Of course, this does not mean that insulated parts will have no problem, but through this process you can rest assured that the pipes in your home will have an extra protection against destruction or cracks. If you decide to contact a Luton plumber, this will make sure that everything is alright and will save you from paying more in case things get serious.

Watch Out for the Sensitive Areas

Remember to check for the broken seals that might exist in your house because these can cause issues with a massive impact on your home. And the bad news is that you might not even discover them in time because when the clear signs appear, it might be too late to fix something. One of your most important jobs is to reassure yourself that the seals around windows, vents or doors are clean and do not present any sign of deterioration.

Unattended issues

In some cases, repairing these issues does not require massive training and can be done even by the home owners, but if the problems go unattended for a longer period of time, then the results can be irreparable. For these easier problems, some caulking might get your rid of the minor issues. Try it. You never know!

Insulated Exposed Pipes

As it was already said, the pipes which are more vulnerable have bigger chances to suffer leakage, corrosion or cracks than the pipes which have previously been insulated. Thus, make sure you do not forget to insulate these pipes. How? It is easy. Just wrap towels around them or even some foam would be good (it can be bought from the local hardware stores). However, if you don’t want to get involved into the situation call a plumber and he will know what to do.

Professional help

Remember that these are just some tips on how maintain your plumbing system. But what is more advisable is to keep in touch with a good Luton plumber and have him check your house thoroughly. You can always try our Luton plumbing company. Once you receive the green light that everything is at place, just respect the suggestions presented and take good care of your house. Simple and easy!

How to Modernize Your Kitchen Cheaply

Looking around your kitchen and feeling depressed about the
dated look that hasn’t been changed since the time when bell bottoms
were all the rage? Even for the home decorator on a budget, there are
cost effective ways that anyone can modernize their kitchen. With the
right tweaks in certain areas, your kitchen can look like a million
bucks without spending anywhere close to that!

1. How is the
lighting in your kitchen? Dim, dreary lighting can have the effect of
bringing down the mood of the room. Dark and heavy drapes will have this
effect as well, so bring in the sunshine and change out those dark
bulbs! Halogen or Incandescent can improve the light quality in the area
enough that it perks up the whole space. Light colored, light material
for the curtains can also let sunlight wash into the kitchen.

2. That orange, yellow, and brown wallpaper was all
the rage circa 1973, but now? Not so much! Why not take down that
outdated ode to another era and get some cans of paint in today’s
colors? Soft sage green, butterscotch yellow, cream, and many other
colors are available to make the kitchen appealing and subtle enough to
be sunny and welcoming. A pretty wallpaper can also be a choice, but
beware of going too trendy because then you will end up with something
that also will need to be changed once tired of it. Subtlety can be the
key, especially if choosing a patterned wallpaper. Be sure that both the
color and pattern are something that you can see living with for many
years. A modern touch could be to add a pretty colored trim to a paint
job, such as robin egg’s blue to a soft butterscotch yellow can
modernize that kitchen.

3. Rejuvenate those cabinets! Whether a
new painted finish is desired or total cabinet changes are needed, this
is a kitchen improvement that is sure to be noticed! The beauty is that
this tweak has the chance to completely remake the whole look and feel
of your kitchen, and can be done in a very cost effective way. Painting,
glazing, or creating a faux finish are ways to update the cabinets that
you currently have along with changing the hardware to more modern
touches if that suits your fancy. For those wanting to completely change
the cabinets without purchasing new cabinets, why not order a cabinet
resurfacing kit? These provide hundreds of style possibilities with the
ease of being self-adhesive or you can opt to buy ones that need to be
glued on. Either way, changing up the cabinets is one of the most
surefire ways of changing your kitchen for the better!

4.
Flooring is a good area of the kitchen to look at for modern appeal.
There are many ways to do the tiling yourself if that is the route that
you so choose, or how about pull up what’s there to see if wood flooring
is already underneath? If there are good wood floors underneath, then
those can be refinished and rejuvenated for a whole new kitchen!
Certainly a hidden treasure worth finding in that case. Whether opting
for linoleum, tile, or wood flooring, any of those materials will
breathe new life into the kitchen.

5. New accessories or small
appliances can completely add to your kitchens eye appeal. A shiny new
blender, lovely new curtains, pretty rugs by the sink, or a new painting
over the kitchen table can draw the eye and make the kitchen seem
totally revamped. Adding quirky personal touches are a great way to show
your kitchen some love. The hardware on the cabinets and drawers can
also be changed to add into the new look.

A kitchen should be a
welcoming place to cook family meals and maybe wind down with a glass of
wine after work, not a place that is dreaded because it looks
unappetizing so to speak. Update the right areas of the kitchen with
these cost effective touches and you’ll be sure to want to spend more
time in there. Who knows, it may inspire you to try some new recipes and
become the next Julia Childs!

Energy Saving Tips for Air Conditioners and Fans

Having a window air conditioner, or even a good fan, can make even the hottest day more comfortable, but if you are not careful those units can also run up your utility bills. There are ways to reduce the energy consumption of both air conditioners and fans, and it is important to learn those tips and tricks before the hot summer months arrive.

The choice of air conditioner can make a big difference in the utility bills you have to pay. Choosing a model based on its energy efficiency as well as its purchase price can save you a lot of money in the long run. It is often better to spend a little more up front on an energy efficient model you can more than make up the difference in the energy you will save.

Look for an air conditioner with variable fan speeds. That flexibility allows you to choose the amount of cooling you need reducing energy usage and saving you money. Variable-speed air conditioners also run more quietly, so you will not be disturbed by the whir of the fan.

Try to install the window unit in as central a location as possible. If you can, choose the window that is closest to the center of the room. This will allow the air to flow more freely and cool the entire room or group of rooms more efficiently. Choosing an area out of direct sunlight will also help the air conditioner run more efficiently and use less energy. Be sure to seal up any gaps between the side and top of the unit and the window. This will reduce energy leakage and keep that cool air where it belongs in your home.

Once that unit is in place, consider adding a simple timer to cool the room only when needed. Set the timer to turn the air conditioner off when you leave home in the morning and back on just before you get back in the evening.

Be sure to close the fresh air vent whenever the air conditioner is running. The fresh air vent allows air to flow in from outside, which is great when the unit is turned off. If you leave it on, however, you are literally paying to cool the outside world.

You can reduce your cooling costs further by using fans in conjunction with your window air conditioners. A fan can circulate the cool air and allow you to set the air conditioner at a higher temperature. Oscillating fans are particularly good at moving air around the home.

Ceiling fans are also great either in addition to the air conditioner or as a replacement. Set the ceiling fan to bring the air down into the room you will likely notice a change in comfort level right away. When the hot summer months are over, setting the ceiling fan to move air toward the ceiling can reduce your heating costs and keep the house more comfortable.

Consider adding a whole house fan for even more comfort and lower energy costs. A whole house fan is designed to be mounted in the attic, and it ventilates the entire home at once. You will need to open a few windows before turning the whole house fan on, but once it is going it can really make a difference. You may even be able to turn your air conditioner off until the temperature gets extremely high.

Using these tips can let you keep your home comfortable and cool all summer long and let you save money at the same time. You can reduce your summer energy costs will still keeping your home and your family comfortable and cool all season long.

The Lazy Way To Organize Your Corner Cabinets

The corner cupboard is simultaneously a brilliant stroke of storage genius and a black hole of non-perishable goods. The corner cabinet ensures no bit of your precious kitchen storage space is wasted; yet there is a minor flaw in the design. How many times have you innocently pushed a few food products just a bit further towards the back, just out of arms reach, until they are to be seen no more? No one is quite sure what they have in that dark, back corner of the cabinet, unless, of course, they use a flashlight or send in a search party!

Happily enough, there are cabinet organizing products available that can solve the lost canned-goods problem. I call it the lazy way to organize your corner cabinets and you’ve probably guessed by now that I’m referring to the popular Lazy Susan solution. Whether you have a clear idea of what you need or you just know that you want your stuff in order, it’s worth your while to check out clever Lazy Susan options.

Half-Moon Lazy Susan
Try a half-moon blind corner Lazy Susan to organize a blind corner cabinet. These double-shelf systems fit almost any size cabinet. Available in many different finishes, you can find the style to match your cabinet. With many fine details, such as thick edges that keep items from falling off, these shelves are designed to bring you more storage space.

D-Shaped Lazy Susan
The D-Shaped Lazy Susan creates more space inside diagonal corner cabinets. Different finishes and materials make these shelves not only sensible, but attractive as well. Whatever you choose to use the shelves for, the independently rotating feature means you can reach exactly what you want without having other items getting in the way. The height of the Lazy Susan adjusts easily to any modifications you might require and the different diameter options make it simple for you to install and enjoy the system.

Full-Circle Lazy Susan
Alternatively, you can opt for a full-circle Lazy Susan that comes in a wide variety of different heights and diameters. The versatility of this Lazy Susan accepts one, two, and even up to three independently rotating shelves. Youll be able to maximize the amount of space in your cabinet and always find what youre looking for.

Kidney-Shaped Lazy Susan
If you have a hinged-door corner cabinet and cant find any suitable shelving why not try a kidney shelf set? Designed to fit around the internal shape of the door, these shelves make organizing a breeze. With styles from sleek chrome to warm wooden trims or even solid colored plastic, kidney-shaped Lazy Susans will match any cabinets and dcor. The non-skid surface will ensure your things stay put, and the solid construction makes a product youll be satisfied with for years.

Pie-Cut Lazy Susan
Perhaps your storage needs are a bit more robust. A sturdy pie-cut Lazy Susan is the answer to your needs. Supported by both your cabinet door and an interior shaft, pie-cut shelves are strong and resilient. The rugged trays brace the weight of large bags of kitty litter, heavy, filled bottles and the like. Whatever the shape of your cabinet, this Pie-Cut Lazy Susan accommodates itself to it easily. Many sizes of fixtures are available and a telescoping shaft allows you to adjust the height of your Lazy Susan with minimal effort.

There are Lazy Susans to fit many budgets, styles, and organizational requirements. So get organized the lazy way and reserve your extra energy for the projects that require it.

Cash Out Refinance For Your Home Is A Tax Trap

Have you ever refinanced your home, used the proceeds for personal use, and then claimed a tax deduction for the interest? I have some bad news. The IRS limits the amount you can claim as an interest deduction for tax purposes.
Are you confused by what this means to you.
Do not worry you are not alone. You see we all believe that the interest you pay for your home (mortgage and a HELOC interest) is tax deductible. I found out the hard way that this is not really the case.
When you refinance on your home and use the money for any reason other than home improvement, the IRS limits your deduction for interest. In some cases you won’t be able to claim the deduction at all.
Here is how it works. The IRS starts by giving you a tax deduction for mortgage interest. There is a fancy name for this called the home equity indebtedness deduction.
All this simply means is that:
If you are married and file a joint return you are generally allowed to claim a deduction interest up to $100,000 of the funds you borrowed. If you file separate tax returns the limit is $50,000. I am only referring to one aspect of the deductions here which relates to refinancing or borrowing extra from your mortgage. There are other deductions and incentives so please consult your advisor.
Now that you understand the deduction here’s how they take it away from you.
Let us look at the following example to see how this works.
Let us make an assumption that you owe $260,000 on your mortgage and that you bought your home for $300,000.
You decide to refinance and take cash out for $30,000. You worked hard and though it would be the ideal time to cash out. Can you claim an interest deduction on the entire $30,000? Let’s assume the market value on your home the day you decided to take the cash out refinance is $320,000.
You may be in for a surprise. If you previously claimed a deduction or thought of claiming a deduction this year, the IRS may limit your interest deduction lowering your refund.
You need to do a second quick calculation to find out the difference between the market value of your home and the costs plus improvements. In this example your market value is $320,000 and the cost is $300,000 so the difference is $20,000. This means is that even though you are allowed to claim up to $100,000 the IRS limits this and tells you that you can only claim interest on $20,000. So if you borrowed $30,000 and used this for personal use, the tax deduction for interest can only be claimed on $20,000. The interest you paid on the other $10,000 is disallowed.
Now if the market value of your home has decreased below the cost of your home, you cannot claim interest on any of the $30,000 you borrowed. I have seen hundreds of clients caught up in this potential tax trap and most of them have their taxes completed by their tax accountants. So if you home is worth $290,000 today and the original cost is $300,000, the entire interest you paid on the $30,000 you borrowed cannot be claimed for tax purposes.
A quick test to see if you are able to claim the deduction for mortgage interest.
Go to the url or the unique links below and gain access to a quick and easy checklist. In this document, we have given you suitable points to consider preventing you from making unnecessary mistakes when filling in your tax return.
If you are filling out your tax returns this year, and you have used funds from your HELOC for personal use, I strongly suggest that you first contact your tax accountant to figure out whether the interest is tax deductible. This is the best move right now, and could prevent you from paying extra taxes and penalties later on.
Please note that this article is for informational purposes only. No liability is assumed with the information presented above.

Essential Insights Regarding The Installation Of Tile Effect Laminate Flooring

Flooring is the most significant aspect of a beautiful house. However large or sophisticated your house may be, if your flooring is not up to the mark, it will make your fantastic house appear dingy and poor. It is important that you get the best possible. Talking of best, only one type comes to mind and that’s tile effect laminate flooring. You will find numerous reasons why you would wish to choose tile effect laminate flooring more than the other kinds accessible. True indeed that there are various kinds and you don’t have to really feel limited to just one type but you will find also some features which you are surely looking inside your perfect flooring. Tile effect laminate flooring offers you the highest number of positive functions and this is the cause why it’s also probably the most popular kind of flooring today.

Advantages Of Laminate Flooring

COST: Times are tough and you will need to be economical. This kind of flooring is extremely affordable and that’s simply one of the main factors why you need to be choosing this type of flooring. Cost is the first thing you see in anything you buy, for sure. So your first criterion is fulfilled easily.

VARIETY: Most of you might be under the impression that just because it’s cheaper, it may not have any variety or styles and may appear extremely monotonous. That is not the case here. You’ll find an excellent variety of patterns and designs to select from and you are able to pick the ones you adore the very best. The selection may wind up confusing you just a little. You might not know what type to choose and therefore, you should be just a little careful. Make certain you keep in mind the purpose and location you need tile effect laminate flooring after which decide so that it goes perfectly nicely for your room or workplace.

MAINTENANCE: Upkeep is really a large issue for numerous. High upkeep can be a huge problem especially for those who don’t really have the time. If you’re amongst those that are searching for some thing that doesn’t need a great deal of caring and is totally free of scratches, you’re indeed looking for tile effect laminate flooring. It is even weather resistant and thus, you have essentially nothing to worry about.

INSTALLATION: You don’t really require an expert to install tile effect laminate flooring for you. You can simply do it without professional help and that is the beauty of it. You can install with ease and in just a little time. Sometimes, you don’t even require adhesive and all you should do is put the pieces together like in a puzzle extremely effortlessly.

These 4 advantages are probably the most perfect and wanted functions in any kind of flooring. Tile impact laminate flooring offers all these together and thus it is the best choice for you.

Technological Developments of Ceramic Flat Iron

With the emergence of new technologically advanced series of flat irons, hair styling has now gone a long way from its evolution. With a flat iron at your disposal, you can now accomplish any desired hairstyles anytime. Other than straightening, flat irons enable you to try out several trendy styles on your hair like curls, bangs, flip style and many more. You can experiment the hairstyles of your favorite celebrity if you spent a few minutes at your home.

With flat irons, you can keep changing your looks to suit any special occasion or event easily without going to a hair salon. Before the introduction of flat irons, women used to carryout expensive hair treatments that are not only expensive but also cause serious damage to your hair follicles. Other than permanent straightening treatments, you can now spend a few bucks to own a flat iron so that you can keep changing your hairstyle whenever you wish to.

Ceramic flat irons are always regarded for the safe results it offers. There are numerous brands of ceramic flat irons available today that differ in style, color and price. Karmin Professional Black Titanium Flat Iron (1″), Karmin G3 Salon Pro Black Tourmaline Ceramic Flat Iron (1″) etc launched by the industry leading manufacturer Karmin are two best flat irons to choose from.

Apart from the amazing heating plates, there are numerous additional features that determine the quality of a ceramic flat iron. Modern ceramic flat irons have evolved a long way and has become digital. For the special convenience of people to carry them during journey, compact sized, light weight varieties or mini ceramic flat irons are also largely available today. They can perfectly fit in your luggage.

Ceramic flat irons of today integrate the unique properties of Infrared heat as well. Even though ceramic materials are known to distribute heat evenly on the hair shaft and offers damage less hair styling, the integration of infrared heat protects your hair from not burning, while sealing the natural moisture of the hair.

Some ceramic flat irons are also incorporated with a combination of mixed technology like the Tourmaline and Titanium in a single device. These two technologies in common Enhance the heating capacities of the flat iron and help to retain moisture by trapping water molecules.

Author Bio

Flat Iron Experts has in its array of flat irons, ceramic flat irons, tourmaline flat iron, titanium flat iron etc. Read reviews on Karmin Flat Irons, Avanti Flat Irons etc

The Best Ceramic Knife Set to Enhance Appeal of Dining Table

Nowadays, everyone prefers different knives depending upon their life style and methods of chopping and cutting. Whatever the purpose of shopping a knife block may be, it is best to purchase the ceramic knife set only for safe and disinfected chopping. Moreover, when you decorate your dining table and kitchen with branded cutting accessories, it fascinates every visitor who takes a look in your kitchen. The look of these ceramic knives is ever green and matches each life style and trend. So your one time investment can serve life time purpose. With comfy knife handle and stylish look, you can feel luxury in your hands. Steak knife set is specially designed for trouble free cutting and chopping. You can cut boneless chicken, meat and pork effortlessly in your kitchen. With its accurate cutting and sharp performance, the material attains appropriate shape instead if zigzag cutting. Moreover, these are very hygienic to execute cutting tasks. You can buy a four set piece of streak knife set from online WebPages while sitting at your place. With excellent control and accuracy, you can purchase ceramic steak knives without any hesitation and doubt. Ceramic knife set is sold worldwide and is popular among masses for its less maintenance and for its quality metal. Once can feel the difference by putting money in such a sharp cutting tool which provides balanced chopping without pressurising fingers and thumbs. You can enjoy your flexible salad preparation, fruit slices and vegetable chopping. Zirconium oxide is the metal used for ceramic knife material. So as the metal depicts, it is totally safe to use ceramic knives. You can shop for lot of accessories to support your ceramic knives. You need to be a little aware while using the ceramic knives; always use good quality wooden chopping board and never use knives to cut hard/ frozen materials. You can order the knife block from the same manufacture online which will be shipped to you in a shorter period of time. Furthermore, warranty of one year enables you to replace and repair the knife set without any additional charges.

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