OnTheHouse Express

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PowerCost Monitor
PowerCost Monitor

Premier Care In Bathing
Premier Care In Bathing



Tahoe Creamery
Tahoe Creamery

Traeger Grills
Traeger Grills

WHY Trap
WHY Trap


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Keeping your roof in tip-top shape!

The first signs are darkening of areas and eventually, small areas of black or green stains and ultimately significant stained areas spoiling the appearance of your roof and your home, reducing its curb appeal and its value. You cannot drive down a street in areas described above without seeing roofs in this stained condition. The poor appearance is certainly reason to do something about the problem, but there is an even better one.

Algae (Gloeocapsa magma to be precise) needs food to grow and some of that food consists of molecules in your asphalt roof. Algae feed on the calcium carbonate or cellulosic fillers used in most asphalt shingles marketed today, and turn your roof black. The other veggies are eating your roof too, but they remain green. The vegetation is literally eating your roof to survive and grow, and will eventually destroy it if left to continue eating your roof for lunch.

Besides eating your roof, the algae is putting down roots, dislodging the granules which protect your shingles from the destructive rays of the sun and driving rains. Surface temperatures also rise as much as 10 degrees because of the dark stains.  In addition, the vegetation holds moisture, accelerating growth, and rotting the underlayment and decking beneath your shingles. The moisture also intensifies the UV rays of the sun. Left unattended, this destructive and unsightly growth will greatly shorten the life of your roof.

So what is a homeowner to do?  There are scores of roof cleaning products on the market. Most of them use either chlorine or sodium hydroxide as the active ingredient.

Although chlorine bleach will remove the color from the stains it will not completely remove the algae or its roots. Frequently the stains will return more quickly because of the incomplete removal, sometimes in less than a year.

Bleach can attack guttering systems and metal components of your roof. It may also change the color of the roof. When chlorine bleach solutions are rinsed from the roof to the ground after application, they can harm foundation plantings. They can also neutralize chemicals used for termite protection and could void your coverage.

There are some roof cleaning products which use other active ingredients. Roof-Be-CleanR spray on is environmentally friendly but it takes several months for the stains to disappear. DefyR uses sodium metasilicate as the active ingredient and requires a specially designed rinsing tool.

Sodium hydroxide based cleaners are generally considered to have the best combination of cleaning ability, ease of removal and environmental compatibility. StainhandlerR

and ShingleShieldR are two of the more popular brands. They apply easily with a garden type sprayer, and can be removed with a high pressure nozzle on a garden hose. It is not advisable to use high powered pressure washers on an asphalt shingle roof as the protective granules can be dislodged, and the shingle tabs lifted and cracked. Properly diluted, applied and rinsed, these cleaners will not harm guttering or foundation plantings and will dislodge even the toughest stains.

Choose the one that best fits your needs, and get your roof looking like new again!

Now that you have cleaned your roof, you have a couple more choices. Depending on the severity of algae growth on your roof, it should stay clean for 2 or more years, at which time you can repeat the cleaning process. If you want to eliminate the problem for good, you can do it by installing zinc strips beneath the shingles at the ridge of your roof. When rain flows over the zinc strips harmless invisible molecules of zinc oxide are formed. Zinc oxide is a friendly compound, the same one used to make products like NoxzemaR The zinc oxide acts as a fungistat, preventing future growth of any vegetation on your roof.

If you have a large roof or a hip roof additional strips may be required down roof. You can see how they should be installed on your roof by clicking on “installation instructions” at the Stainhandler web site. ShingleShieldR and StainhandlerR both offer the strips in easy to handle sizes for do it yourselfers and contractors. The ShingleShieldR  strips come in 3 foot lengths with pre-punched holes for easy nailing under your shingle tabs. If you prefer not to nail into your roof membrane, the StainhandlerR strips come in 2 foot lengths and are designed to be held in place with clear adhesive caulk. There are other versions of zinc strips, mostly sold in coils. All zinc strips, whether in handy to use form, or in coils, should protect the roof for 20 years or more. Compare the thickness as well as the price and convenience of installation when you are ready to do your shopping.

So you don’t have to put up with those ugly stains that you see on your roof. Choose the cleaner that is right for you and then take the second step by installing zinc strips to eliminate the problem for good. You and your roof will be happy you did!

Today’s Renovations Sound Different

A recent client decided to help his marriage by making a conscious effort to reduce the noise coming from their entertainment room (aka his man cave) in the basement. While he was at it, he also decided to try to minimize the noise coming from the laundry room to the kitchen and between the kids’ bathroom and the master bedroom.

Sound is a lot like water in a bucket. If there’s a hole in a wall or ceiling, sound will come pouring right through, which makes noise reducing home renovation projects challenging.

There are new technologies available to make renovating for noise reduction more effective:

  • Use a sound-reducing drywall product like QuietRock. It can be applied in a regular drywall assembly in place of drywall or it can be applied to the current wall assembly, reducing the need for tear-down during renovation. QuietRock can block and dampen noise by up to 75% (in some cases, even more than that).
  • When using sound-reducing drywall, be sure to also use an acoustical sealant around the perimeter of the room.
  • Increase your potential for quiet by using acoustical putty over electrical, phone and plumbing outlet boxes.
  • Check doors and windows; some let more sound through than others. Even when installing sound-damping doors, like QuietHome Doors, it is suggested that you pay particular attention to perimeters. Be sure all joints and jams are filled appropriately, especially around the edges, hinges and locks. One way of checking for air leaks is to turn the lights off on one side of the door and have someone on the other side shine a flashlight around the edge. If light can get through, so can sound.

With today’s technology and remodeling techniques, the only noises you should hear are your favorite sounds.

Using Nature to Cool Your Home

. There was a time when air-conditioners, swamp coolers and electric fans didn't exist. In those days, to cool off the inside of their homes, folks were forced to use their ingenuity. In the desert, south-facing widows are bad things. In cold country, south-facing windows are desirable. Settlers used Mother Nature to their advantage because they had too. They considered prevailing winds that would promote cross-ventilation and built next to water and tree cover for their cooling and shading effects.

Today it could cost a small fortune to live near the water - if, in fact, any was available. And with new homes often being built in groups of a hundred or more, one would be fortunate to personally select colors, let alone have the home positioned for optimum energy-efficiency. However, it doesn't hurt to think along the lines and use some of the same common sense of our ancestors. In the short run you can count on being more comfortable and in the long run you can count on saving money. Most air conditioners run on 220 - twice as much voltage as 110.

First, a lesson about sunshine: When the sun rises in the morning, it heats a home through any east-facing windows. The same thing happens in the afternoon when the sun begins to set. West-facing windows allow hot afternoon sun to bake the occupants. Curtains are cute and may match the furniture in the rest of the room, but there isn't anything as effective as roller shades. They are inexpensive and effective. Exterior shades are considerably more effective than interior ones because they prevent the heat from entering the house in the first place. Unfortunately, most people don't want to go outside every time the shade has to be opened or closed. There are exterior-mount shades that operate from the inside via through-wall pulleys, but they are expensive and haven't won any awards for good looks. Awnings are a great way to reduce heat. They are not permanent and can be left in place until late fall at which point they can be removed and stored until early spring. You want all the sunlight you can get during the winter months.

The trick to tree and shrub placement is to place foliage so that it provides shade in the summer but not in the winter. Doing this is easy. Place shrubs on east and west exposures to block early morning and late afternoon sun. Moderate-size trees block late morning and early evening sun. Large trees are placed to shade the roof. The sun is hottest when it is high in the sky. In fact, at noon the sun is closer to you than any other time of day. During the winter, sunshine is a good thing for a house. That's why it's important to plant deciduous trees. They lose their leaves in winter while providing shade in the summer. The branches of a bare tree can block out 20 percent to 30 percent of needed sunlight, so prune regularly. It's good for sunlight and good for the tree.

Every landscape will be different. Even your neighbor's home will be slightly different from your own. It might not be a bad idea to work with your neighbors to develop a neighborhood shade plan, one that benefits everyone. A warning: Some trees have enormous roots that grow very near the surface. A tree planted too close to the foundation of your home could do major damage. It might be a good idea to contact a nursery in your area to determine which shrubs and trees will work best to fulfill your needs.

As we mentioned, south-facing windows are a good thing in the winter or in chilly climates. They should be kept clear during winter months when collecting sunshine becomes more important than reflecting it.

Finally, be sure that there is a thick layer of insulation in your attic.

On The House with the Carey Brothers & Rebecca Cole” Premiers on KRLA 870 AM - August 1, 2009

The Carey Brothers and Rebecca Cole will help KRLA listeners maintain, improve and beautify their homes with information, tips and affordable solutions

on everything from saving energy, reducing utility bills and how to prevent minor repairs from becoming major budget busters to smart and clever ways to affordably spruce up their piece of the Great American Dream.

“We are excited to add ‘On The House’ to our weekend line-up of shows,” states KRLA 870 AM VP and General Manager, Terry Fahy. “In these economic times, our listeners are looking for ways to upgrade their existing home rather than moving and ‘On The House’ is the perfect prescription for that need.”

“James and I will help KRLA listeners ‘fix it’,” adds co-host, Morris Carey, “while Rebecca helps them ‘fix it up’ with decorating, design and gardening tips.”

Airing via KRLA’s powerful 50,000 watt signal, “On The House” will reach nearly half a million listeners per week all throughout Southern California. On weekdays, KRLA will also air the award-winning “On The House Tip of the Day” series offering entertaining insights and valuable information for homeowners in a power-packed 60-second spot format.

The “On The House” home improvement media franchise, now in its third decade of informative entertainment, covers a broad spectrum of media ranging from its long-form weekly talk radio program and a series of award-winning daily “tips” for homeowners (together heard on over 250 unique affiliate stations nationwide) to columns (sent to hundreds of newspapers via the AP wire service), national magazines such as “The Family Handyman” and countless live appearances, as well as the content-rich onthehouse.com Web site.

For information on the program, contact Natalie Keen at 1-800-737-2474 x 35 or via e-mail at natalie@onthehouse.com.

About “On The House” and the Carey Brothers

James and Morris Carey are nationally-recognized as both award-winning professional remodelers and dedicated consumer advocates - offering a broad range of user-friendly advice on all aspects of remodeling, home improvements, construction and home maintenance - based on nearly 60-years of combined “hands-on” experience. In addition to a syndicated four-hour weekly national call-in radio program (“On The House with the Carey Brothers”), they also air award-winning daily “tips” for homeowners on hundreds radio stations border-to-border and coast-to-coast. They also authored “Home Remodeling for Dummies,” “Home Maintenance for Dummies” and “Home Improvement (all-in-one) for Dummies,” and write a weekly nationally syndicated newspaper column for the Associated Press. The Carey Brothers also make numerous entertaining and informative guest appearances on national radio, network TV shows and at hundreds of live events. For more information visit www.onthehouse.com .

About Rebecca Cole and “Cole Creates / Rebecca Cole Design”

Rebecca Cole has developed an internationally renowned lifestyle and design business, known worldwide as “Cole Creates” and locally (in New York City) as “Rebecca Cole Design.” While busy designing stylish terraces or giving living rooms her trademark infusion of color, she also authored three award-winning books and her career, business and home have been profiled in over 300 national and international publications - from Architectural Digest and Martha Stewart Living to Metropolitan Home, Woman’s Day and The New York Times, to name but a few. She also regularly appears on a number of television and radio shows. Recently, she hosted all 200 shows for Discovery Channel’s “Surprise by Design” and has appeared nearly as often on NBC’s morning “Today” show. Other frequent TV appearances include “Oprah,” “The View,” “CNN,” “BBC World News” and the “Megan Mullally Show.” Most recently, she joined the nationally syndicated “On the House with the Carey Brothers” radio show as a regularly featured co-host. In addition - and between national speaking appearances, writing a new book and filming a new international travel show - Rebecca also designs furniture and home accessories. For more information visit www.colecreates.com .

About Salem Communications

Salem Communications (NASDAQ: SALM) is a leading U.S. radio broadcaster, Internet content provider and magazine and book publisher targeting audiences interested in Christian and family-themed content and conservative values. In addition to its radio properties, Salem owns Salem Radio Network(R), which syndicates talk, news and music programming to approximately 2,000 affiliates; Salem Radio Representatives(TM), a national radio advertising sales force; and Salem Web Network(TM), an Internet provider of Christian content and online streaming. Upon the close of all announced transactions, the company will own 97 radio stations, including 61 stations in 23 of the top 25 markets. For more information visit www.salem.cc.

Eating Healthy

Start by eating a balanced breakfast; followed by small snacks or mini meals, consisting of fresh fruits nuts and proteins throughout the day. Eat breakfast like a king; lunch like a prince and dinner like a pauper.

Eliminate soft drinks and other sugary snacks and drink at least 50 ounces of water a day.

Eat some fresh deep water fish two to three times a week.

Do weight lifting exercises two to three times each week to strengthen bones and increase metabolism.

Come on folks, this is not rocket science.

Let’s re-invigorate that old American fighting spirit and fight for our good health and that of our kids.

You can get more exercise, nutrition and health tips by picking up a copy of my “Living Proof” DVD at my website at www.overthehillfitness.com.

Live with vigor,

Karel Nunnink

The Easy Way to Control Insects

The Easy Way to Control Insects

The new W•H•Y Trap for Wasps, Hornets & Yellowjackets from RESCUE!® catches seven species of paper wasps, two types of hornets, and 12 species of yellowjackets – 21 species in all. And the beauty of the trap is that you don’t need to guess which of these species you have.

No matter where you live, or what biting, stinging, nest-building insects you have in your backyard, the W•H•Y Trap will catch what’s bugging you. W•H•Y works on species found across the U.S. – whether it’s red wasps in Texas, German yellowjackets in Wisconsin, bald-faced hornets in Oregon, Southern yellowjackets in Georgia or European hornets in Virginia.

The W•H•Y Trap can be used three seasons long. It will catch the queens of each wasp, hornet and yellowjacket species in the spring before they build nests, and will also capture the foraging workers throughout summer and fall when they’re most likely to sting.

As with other products from RESCUE!®, the W•H•Y Trap is environmentally responsible, using naturally-occurring ingredients rather than poisonous killing agents. A combination of three scientifically-developed attractants lures insects to the trap, where they enter through one of two openings. Once inside, the insects either drown in the top chamber, or dehydrate in the bottom chamber. The attractant kit with the trap lasts two weeks, refills are sold separately, and no extra food bait is required.

The W•H•Y Trap for Wasps, Hornets & Yellowjackets was created by Sterling International, Inc., manufacturers of the RESCUE!® brand of Fly, Yellowjacket and Japanese Beetle Traps.

Sterling International is a pioneer of “green” pest control methods. When the company’s founder, Rod Schneidmiller, created his  first insect trap over 27 years ago, sprays were the standard for controlling pests. His concept was so revolutionary that he was laughed out of several meetings with retailers when he tried to introduce the product.

Today, consumers are more aware of the hazards associated with harsh chemicals and pesticides. Insect traps have gained acceptance because of their more favorable impact on human health, plant life, and the beneficial insect population. 

Even Sterling International’s brand, RESCUE!®, and the bright colors of their products were selected to be a positive alternative to the deadly names and dark pest control labels found on store shelves back in the 1980s. Sterling is safely rescuing people from pests.

Then and now, Sterling International’s mission is to build and sell highly effective pest control solutions which are safe for the consumer, easy to use, and reasonably priced. Sterling offers innovative products which entail luring and trapping the target insect. All of their RESCUE!® traps use scientifically-developed attractants designed to replicate what is already found in the natural world – either from the target insect’s body, its food source, or its nest or colony.

Years of field testing and enhancement by Sterling’s team of scientists go into every product to ensure that it consistently lures the target insect in different geographic locations and varied weather conditions.

The first RESCUE!® product Sterling ever created was a Reusable Fly Trap, which they still offer. In addition, they make a popular Disposable Fly Trap and a “Big Bag” Fly Trap with a larger capacity for agricultural areas. Several years ago, they introduced yet another Fly Trap made from used two-liter soft drink bottles and post-consumer recycled plastic, called the POP! Fly Trap. All of these RESCUE!® fly products catch the most prevalent nuisance and filth fly species, and activate easily with the addition of water.

RESCUE!® has been the market leader with its yellowjacket traps since the late 1980s. Their Reusable  Yellowjacket Trap  catches all major North American species and is a familiar sight in yards throughout the Western United States. Replacement attractant for this trap lasts as long as 10 weeks. There’s also a Disposable RESCUE!® Yellowjacket Trap available. Activated with water, it’s perfect for taking on the go for picnics or camping trips.

Both Japanese Beetles and Oriental Beetles are significant pests of ornamental plants and turfgrasses. For those homeowners who do battle with these beetles, RESCUE!® also makes a trap for them. The RESCUE!® Japanese & Oriental Beetle Trap lasts the entire 6-8 week beetle season, with a slide-lock bottom that allows the trap to be emptied and reused.

RESCUE!® products are good for the environment, but they’re also good for consumers who care about using the most effective method of pest control. The RESCUE!® Traps and Attractants are widely available at home improvement centers, hardware stores and lawn & garden retailers throughout the United States.

Speaking of which, that’s where the RESCUE!® products are made: Right here in the U.S.A. – Spokane,  Washington to be exact.

 For information about the W•H•Y Trap for Wasps, Hornets & Yellowjackets, visit www.whyistheanswer.com. To learn more about the other products in the RESCUE!® line, visit their main corporate site at www.rescue.com. You can also reach them by phone at 1-800-666-6766, and follow them on Twitter at twitter.com/rescue.