Category: Blog

Basement Waterproofing

Gravity pulls at water trying to get it to move to the center of the earth. If your basement gets in its way, problems can happen.

If you’re interested in basement waterproofing, I can only think of two, or possibly three, reasons why this might be. My first guess would be that right now your existing basement is either flooded or recently flooded for the umpteenth time, and you’ve had it. Or, you might be getting ready to build a new home and want to investigate all of your options.

Let’s talk right now about just one dynamic of what causes water to enter your basement. As bland as it is, gravity is a primary force that is constantly working against you and your basement. Not only does gravity hold you firm to the surface of the planet, it dose the same for all solid objects. But since in the reality we all know, one solid object can’t easily pass trough another one unless forced to with great velocity. Bullets come to mind or any other solid thing shot at another one – like a 2×4 that punctures a house wall in a tornado.

But in the case of water, or any other liquid, under normal everyday circumstances gravity tugs hard at the water trying to get it to come to the center of the earth. You basement or crawl space is in the earth and almost always lower in elevation than the surrounding ground. Water then does all it can to go down, but can run into issues with bedrock, clay soil, or any other thing underground that blocks its downward movement.

At that point, water starts to move sideways until it gets to the lowest possible point which, in most cases, is the ocean. I’m reminded of the first house I ever built. It was for Mark Ossege. I knew that I had a potential problem for a wet basement, because his lot was on a hill with the ground to the right higher than the ground to the left. You can clearly see the higher ground in this photo. Mark’s house is the one on the left with the semi-circle window over the front door.

Let’s get back on track. Imagine when it rains how much water enters the soil above Mark’s house. That water starts its journey to the ocean and moves about 18 inches into the soil before it hits a dense clay. At that point the water rides along the top of the clay layer moving like an underground river. But when it comes to a house basement the foundation walls act like a dam. If there are the tiniest cracks in the wall, the pressure of all the water above the house that’s in the ground acts like an enormous hypodermic needle squirting the water into the basement.

Look at the left side of Mark’s house. You can clearly see the ground drop off to the left. This is very common in many situations. Perhaps your house is built on a slight slope. If so, then you can use gravity to help waterproof your basement. In this situation I was able to control the water and keep Mark’s basement dry using a great foundation waterproofing system combined with lots of clean washed rounded gravel that was placed against the sides of his foundation.

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Basement Waterproofing Contractors

My guess is you’re reading this because you’ve finally had it. The most recent rainstorm or rapid snow melt caused another flood in your basement. You’re tired of your wet, damp, leaking basement, and want to make sure you hire the pick of the litter when you start to interview basement waterproofing contractors. I don’t blame you, as it’s a very expensive proposition, and you want the job done right the first time.

Hiring a basement waterproofing contractor requires you to be on top of your game. You can’t make your decision based on hope – hoping that he solves your problem. That, by the way, is the most common mistake made when an autopsy is performed on a job gone bad. If you don’t do your research into the real root of the basement leak, the actual dynamics of what’s causing the leak and what are the basement waterproofing systems that work and don’t work, you could spend thousands of dollars and not get the result you’re looking for.

Typically you may hear this advice when starting to vet contractors who fix basement leaks:

Make sure they are licensed
Check with the Better Business Bureau
Ask for references
Go online searching the company’s name followed by the word “problems”, “complaints” or “nightmares”
These are not bad ideas at all, but it’s just the start. Here’s the problem I have with the first three items on the list. I see bad drivers on the road everyday. My guess is they have a valid drivers license. The Better Business Bureau is great, but they may not have received a complaint yet about the contractor you’re about to hire. Do you think any contractor is going to give you a list of people he didn’t satisfy? But I love the last item. Be sure you take all sorts of time doing exhaustive research online searching for the contractor’s name, your city or town, and all sorts of other relevant search terms to narrow the results you get back.

If you’ve never been in an interview with a contractor, especially one that has a professional sales team, you really need to be careful. If the contractor or salesperson comes over when you’re still emotionally dealing with the sopping wet basement, you could be highly vulnerable to powerful psychological tricks. One of the most common ones, and this one is used heavily by replacement-window salesmen, is the Today-Only price. This method happens when a salesman says something like, “Mrs. Smith, your wet basement is the worst one I’ve seen in years. I’m really sorry about all your ruined possessions. My company can take care of this. My calculations show that we can do this job for $5,000.00. However, if you authorize us to do the work right now by signing this contract, I’m allowed to give you a discount of $700.00. My boss has authorized this for today only. If I walk out your door, the price will be $5,000.00”

This statement by the waterproofing salesman will almost always trip two psychological triggers in your head. The first one is reciprocity. He’s ‘giving’ you something – the discount – and you subconsciously feel obligated to give him something in return, like your signature on the contract! The more powerful of the two is the second trick, that of scarcity. If you don’t sign the contract, he takes away the discount. Scarcity drives consumers insane.

To shield yourself from these mind tricks, you just have to do your homework and discover the real truth about basement leaks and how best to stop them. All of that information is here on this website. Be sure to stick around and discover how to keep your basement bone dry, often with no work being done on the inside of your home!

Categories: Blog

Best House Roofing

When it comes to roofing techniques, the main purpose is to secure your home from the difficult weather conditions, especially precipitation; hence, shielding the indoor, along with the patio of your residence will certainly keep it stronger and less dangerous a long time period.

The roof system of a house is consisted of roof coverings, flashing and chimney, every time it comes to inspecting the property. The goal of suitable roofing is to drain the fluids on the way to the surface without influencing the surfaces. In order to do that, it is highly recommended to pay attention to a specialist and not necessarily try to do it for yourself.

The durability of a roofing coverage depends on the materials you use to repair and renovate your residence. Further on, the excellence of the work has to be flawless and you should truly take into consideration exterior elements and supplemental threats such as rigorous exposure to sunlight, continuous raining or snowing.

Cement and slate roofs, for example, have the tendency to last longer to the harsh weather than asphalt shingles; nevertheless, you should really let experts do their job. In case you choose to refurbish your residence by yourself, ensure you truly know what you’re undertaking. If not, your roofing might prove to become a complete disaster. Aside from cement and common asphalt, constructors additionally make use of concrete tiles, woods shakes and fiberglass gravels, along with metallic shingles for a better balance.

At the end of the job, experts will heat-seal or glue the shingles in order to fight as much as possible to the weather conditions Other crucial components of the whole construction are flashings, made usually of light weight aluminum and produced to deplete the water from the roof so as to sustain the protection and dryness of the residence as much as possible. Overall, roofing a home is not so complex, if you take into consideration some beneficial tips and suitable assistance from specialists.

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Keep Your Gutters Clean

For those of you who have rented their whole lives and then buy a home to live in, all of a sudden you find yourself a handy man. With that comes doing things like looking at the roof and checking the downspouts and working your way down the building. We are going to learn how and why it is important to keep your gutters clean.

As the gutters become clogged due to leaves or small branches and the like, the water will be trapped inside. As it fills with water it will become heavy and may fall off of your home. To put that into perspective, one gallon of water weighs just over eight pounds.Think about how many gallons of water it would hold before falling off the structure.

Toward the top of your home, there is a wooden board that runs the length of the home. The gutters are placed and secured in the front of this wooden board. This is bare wood with nothing protecting it. If it fills with water the board will get wet and you will have rotten wood. Standing water also entices mosquitoes to lay eggs to hatch. You then have a serious mosquito issue.

Now that the decision has been made to finally clean up that gutter, you will need a pair of gloves, a small garbage bag, and small shovel and the ladder. Find a friend to hold the ladder secure while you work. Using your hand or shovel dig out all the sticks and yard trash, do this in each gutter. Then rinse with the garden hose while checking for good strong water flow.

Every so often you need to look at the screws that hold the gutters onto the home, make sure they are tight and secure. Doing this helps prevent it from coming lose and pulling out of the wall. This is a small thing you can do to ensure that your property is safe to walk around on. Check the other things around your home for safety sake.

To sum it up, you now understand the importance of keeping those gutters cleaned. Perhaps by marking your calendar in June and once in November to remind yourself the time has come to clean them again. Twice a year will be sufficient maintenance. In essence you are preventing wood rot and pests along with the hazard of having the gutter system from falling. Remind your neighbor to do theirs as well.

Categories: Blog

The Benefits of Duct Insulation

Attic insulation can go a long way in lowering energy consumption and costs. Most of the heat put into a house will be lost right out the roof sending energy costs through the roof with it. You can install attic insulation that will keep in the heat, or keep it out during hot weather months. Your roof and attic are the answer to energy cost reduction.

The benefits of duct insulation

Homes and buildings with forced hot air heating systems or duct work that contains air conditioning distribution require extra insulation around duct work to keep energy consumption efficient and affordable. There are several types of duct insulation materials that will effectively insulate and product duct work.

The most common types of duct or attic insulations are fibreglass insulation and cellulose insulation. Each come in various densities depending on your climate and the exposure of the duct to the elements. For example, duct work that runs between floors is more protected by the house itself than that which runs through the attic. Floor sound insulation can also add to the reduction in dampening or energy loss through the ducts.

Fiberglass insulation is generally applied in sheets with a paper backing that is moisture resistant. It is used to be directly wrapped around the ducts and in wall spaces between ducts and the wall. Cellulose insulation is a spray type of insulation that is used just to fill in between the duct and the wall. As the material is sprayed in it dries and expands to fill any gaps. The amount sprayed and type determines the density of the entire insulation job.

Any area of a house that is directly exposed to the outdoors needs to be insulated, not only to save the homeowner money, but often by law. In fact, different areas require different levels of insulation in order for a home to pass inspection. This is the best way to ensure the home is protected from the elements and will be safe for occupancy. One area of particular concern to inspectors is the attic insulation.

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Cellulose Insulator

Cellulose insulation is the latest in materials and applications for insulating attics, basements, walls and floors in commercial buildings and homes. Many types of cellulose insulation including that made from recycled materials, mineral wool and other organic materials are finding its way into new and existing structures.

What Goes Into Cellulose Insulation?

Cellulose insulation is a combination of many different materials. Some of the cellulose materials are made from natural and organic fibres, some from recycled materials. After the fibres are formed, the insulation is treated to make it resistant to fire, mould and mildew. Installation requires that a hose blow it into the spaces between walls and floors. The composite mixture is further treated to make it adhere to just about any surface. It will make a tight and secure seal against drywall, concrete, steel, plaster, or wood. This keeps moisture out and expensive heat in.

Cellulose insulation is unique in that it can be applied to the exterior surface of walls and ceilings where most other types of insulation are in between the wall boards. The cellulose material is both attractive as well as functional.

Types of Basement Insulation

Cellulose insulation can also be used at basement insulation. Traditionally basements have been insulated with a fibreglass type of insulation with a reflective paper backing. However, cellulose insulation is just as effective for basements and crawl spaces. It is important that any type of insulation allow for ventilation so that any excessive heat can escape. Also proper ventilation of a home or building is important with these ultra effective insulations. If fresh air cannot circulate a home or building may become “sick” meaning it does not allow fresh air in or out and the stagnant, often germ ridden air can harm the buildings occupants.

Acoustic Applications

Insulation’s such as acoustical foam do more than reduce noise and control temperatures. The foam is designed to eliminate noise reverberation which can distort sound. It does this by either absorbing the sound or creating angles on hard smooth surfaces so that the sound is deflected. Further soundproofing can be accomplished with insulation’s including cellulose insulation.

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How Is Alberta’s Economy Growing Today?

Alberta has been one of the strongest provinces in all of Canada with regards to the growth of business in the region. This has proved to be rather important for all to see as it could bring in more jobs to the province and could encourage businesses to eventually get more money for all of the services and functions they have to offer. The development of jobs around the province has been a rather interesting point of the economy as well. It is clearly amazing to see how Alberta has been growing over time.

More Are Coming

The number of people who come into Alberta for work from other parts of Canada has increased in recent time. It is estimated that about forty thousand people came into Alberta in 2013 with the intention of finding jobs or employment that is better than what they already have.

This has helped to get more jobs to come around in the province. Reports from Statistics Canada state that about three thousand jobs are coming into the province every month. This makes it easier for more people to find jobs as they come into the region.

Unemployment Is Low

One huge advantage Alberta has over other parts of Canada comes from how the unemployment rate here is relatively low. It is estimated that the unemployment rate in Alberta is at around 4.9% as of the middle part of 2014. This is two percentage points lower than what the national rate is.

The unemployment rate in the city of Calgary is at around 5.4%. While this is slightly higher than what other parts of Alberta is experiencing, it is still a good number considering some of the damages that the city has dealt with recently as a result of flooding in recent time.

A Variety of Companies Are Hiring

What makes the economy of Alberta all the more better is that there are many entities that are hiring right now. These include a number of large companies that want to bring in more talent in any way possible. The interest that many people have in different companies clearly shows based on how companies like Stantec and Suncor Energy are adding thousands of jobs each year and are continuing to develop within the province to offer more employment solutions for all to take advantage of.

Many of these companies include ones that operate in the trade and agriculture sectors. Companies like Canada Safeway, Agrium and Alberta Health Services have been particularly getting more jobs out to a larger variety of entities all around the province. Meanwhile, the Shaw Communications company has added about two thousand new jobs to Alberta in the past couple of years. The growth in the jobs sector around all of these businesses in Alberta shows that there is a demand for work in a variety of fields.

The economy in Alberta has certainly been growing over time and it is much better now than what many other parts of Canada is experiencing. This makes Alberta a great place to discover when it comes to getting business managed in the province.

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Alberta Business Is Growing Around Border Crossings

Alberta has six border crossings that are located alongside the American state of Montana. These border crossings in towns like Wild Horse, Carway and Coutts have proven themselves to be important for Alberta’s economy as people come into or out of the country for all sorts of functions.

One popular point about these border crossings is that they are all facilitating businesses to develop. There are many great business opportunities that are showing up around border towns in Alberta.

Duty Free Shops Are Popular

Duty free shops are some of the most noteworthy spaces to take a look at around these borders. These businesses have grown in popularity as they offer different goods for people to buy without taxation. These include fine liquor and cigarette products among other goods that can be found around Canada. Of course, these places will require people who come into the country to watch for what they can buy as there are limits as to what one can bring back into the United States after shopping at such a place.

Canadian Franchises Are Also Noteworthy

Many popular Canadian franchises can also be found around the border. It is not uncommon for people to find a Tim Hortons location once one goes into a border town, for instance. The reason for this is because many border crossings are looking to get visitors into the area to feel a little more welcome as they come into Canada. Much of this can be done by inviting people to try out some traditional Canadian products as they come into the area.

A Necessary Pit Stop?

There is also the way how many people around border crossings in Alberta are setting up their own restaurants, convenience stores and other places of interest. They know that Americans who head into Alberta for vacation could use a place where they can enjoy a little something en route to a much larger destination. This is especially important considering that Americans still have a good way to go before reaching Calgary or Edmonton.

Many of these smaller businesses can set up in and around border towns as a means of helping people to get a bit of time off from traveling before they continue. This can really be to anyone’s advantage when used properly.

Of course, the development of currency exchange centres around these border towns can be great as well. Business will always be strong thanks to the way how these exchange centres are so necessary for travelers. The fact that they can get profits off of the commissions and fees associated with exchanging money from one currency to the next is certainly worth discovering. This is always going to be essential for all to explore for any purpose one might have when finding a way to make more money in Alberta.

Business in Alberta has certainly been growing over time and the border crossings that lead into the province are certainly signs of this. It is clear from the way how the business scene is growing that more people have really become interested in getting their businesses ready around the border.

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Green Construction Will Certainly Be Big To Explore In Alberta

Construction jobs have been rather popular in and around all parts of Alberta. Much of this is thanks to the movement of people from other parts of the world into the province. Today’s construction businesses can look to explore the use of green construction projects to make their work all the more useful for society. Green construction is interesting to see in that it entails plenty of functions relating to making buildings that are designed with recycled materials in mind.

Green construction projects are being used by more home building companies because it is a fine business model to use. It works wonders for many reasons that relate to not only getting businesses to be a little more in control with their money but to also bring in more jobs. This makes for something that can really be important to explore.

It May Help To Save Money

Some businesses will save money if they can use recycled materials. Old dry wall, waste wood and other commonplace materials materials may be acquired from places that do not need them anymore. This means that homes can be built with recycled materials that may cost less instead of having to go all the way out to manually harvest different materials for use in the construction process. This often takes a while to recover the cost of preparing but it can be worthwhile in the long run.

It Also Brings In More Jobs

The use of green construction can also help in getting more jobs out in Alberta. Part of this includes the need to bring in more solar energy jobs so panels for this form of power can be designed and installed on new properties. In addition, some green landscaping jobs may open through firms that work with new construction projects to create surfaces outside homes that are conducive for energy-saving processes.

New Manufacturing Jobs Are Coming Too

Manufacturing jobs are being added just as well. These include some jobs that cover the need to create new materials out of recycled compounds. For instance, old waste concrete materials may be gathered by businesses and then re-purposed into a series of new bricks for buildings to use. This could really help with creating a finer appearance that really stands out and has that look that one might want. This can be great for business as having more jobs may help with making it easier for different things to be added and used at a given time.

It Is Great For Promotional Purposes

Some people may be more likely to support of a business if it can show that it is responsible with regards to the environment at large. For instance, people might respond positively to green construction projects because they are made to be sturdy and with care for the planet in mind. This could really add to the promotional plans that one is trying to use.

Green construction is a big part of business in Alberta that has to be explored. If more home-building businesses take a look at this point then it might be easier for a business to really go forward in the province.

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Why the Funeral Business Is Going To Rise In Alberta

No one wants to think about funerals. While they are often known for being celebrations of a person’s life, they are also occasions when there is sorrow because someone is no longer around. It can be a difficult event for anyone to comprehend but it is something that has to be thought about regardless of this.

However, funerals are rather important for all to think about. The business scene in Alberta is certainly going to be impacted by the need to have more funerals in the near future. There are many reasons why so many funeral businesses are going to start working overtime in the near future.

The Population Is Getting Old

Alberta has a pretty good-sized population as it is. However, the popular has been getting older over the last couple of years. In fact, the Government of Canada estimates that there are more than five million people over the age of 65 in Alberta. As a result, the need to get funerals set up is going to be rather important for all to see. The likelihood for more of the population in Alberta to die off is strong so more funeral businesses might have to start up in the near future.

The Cost Will Be High

The cost of getting a funeral set up can be rather high. Many businesses could start to grow and bring in more jobs thanks to the added money that is required in order to get these funerals ready.

It is estimated that a funeral can cost close to $10,000 in some cases. This is due to the need to get a proper burial site, a casket for use, a monument and even reservations for a funeral home for a ceremony. The potential profits that a funeral home could get could help to get more jobs to start up over time as the demand for services start to add up.

More People Are Pulling Out the Stops

Many different businesses can benefit from the ways how more people are looking for ways to make their funerals more elaborate. For instance, many people can going to look for elaborate floral decorations for their funerals and are getting floral shops in Alberta to prepare more materials. Much of this can result in quite a growth in jobs relating to this field.

In addition, limousine rentals are especially expected to increase in Alberta, thus requiring the need for more jobs relating to driving and maintaining these vehicles. These are often used in funerals for transporting people and should be used quite well for some solemn occasions. This is just one example of how many different types of businesses are expected to rise and grow as they are required for more funerals.

The funeral business is not something that is positive for all to think about but it is something that has to be considered. If the funeral industry in Alberta is observed carefully then people will certainly notice that this industry is going to grow in the near future and become more prevalent. As unfortunate as death can be, it is also something that is causing the growth of many different business ventures in and around the province.

Categories: Blog