A Short History of Slate Roofs

When you have a mortgage on an older property it may indeed have a beautiful slate roof. This is something that really can add value to the home. Here we take a look at the history of slate roofs.

Slate roofs have been around for over 700 years. Used on castles, it originally was a product reserved for such buildings because of its expense. Today, slate is still used on roofs. It is one of the longest lasting materials so anyone buying a century-old home with this material for the roof can expect to get plenty more use out of it.

Slate roofing Sydney
Image courtesy of Slate Roofing Sydney

Evidence of slate roofing is shown in records of homes in England and Wales in the 1300s. This material came as shale sediment. It was also composed of clay and volcanic ash depending on where it was sourced. By the very early 1800s, the rock was quarried in Spain. The process used was efficient and roofing made of slate become common in regular homes, not just castles or those meant for the wealthy.

Slate took off as a roofing material in America in the 1600s. A quarry opened in the late 1700s. It quickly became available to ordinary citizens. The material did not begin being mass quarried in the United States until the 1800s. The biggest producer of slate tiles is Vermont.

Vermont was home to many immigrants who arrived there in the mid-1800s from Wales. This is one reason they immediately set about finding a way to source and produce slate. When the railroads arrived, the slate produced there was able to be shipped across the nation.

It was the most common material used for roofing in the country until the early 1900s. Homes built from this time period that exist today often still have the slate roofs intact. It is a long-wearing, durable, weather-resistant, fire-resistant material. Its average lifespan is about 100 years, making it one of the best materials for any roof. However, it is still very expensive.

When newer materials began appearing on the marking, including tiles and wood shake, they began to predominate. Slate felt out of favor as the first choice for many builders. This is because the other materials were easier in many cases to come by and they were cheaper.

When asphalt shingles came on the market they became the most common material used in home building. This left slate to fall away as a commonly used roofing material.

Today it has made a comeback due to many people wishing to refurbish older or historic homes. It is still the most expensive roofing material but it is durable and it offers a beauty that withstands the test of time.

How Storms Can Affect and Damage Your Roof

Here we will be looking at the importance of roof care when you have a mortgage.

Hail, rain, harsh winds, and snow can all affect your roof. After any storm, check your roof immediately to see what damage has occurred. After a visual inspection from the ground contact a professional roofer to have them inspect it again so they can start on the repairs necessary.

Hailstorms can crack roof shingles or tiles. They can also fracture the shingles which can weaken the whole roof. If this is not taken care of quickly they can get larger and cause the entire roof to rip apart.

Rain causes damage by exacerbating any leaks that are already present. Wind, especially severe wind from storms or tornados, can tear shingles and tiles away from the roof and cause severe problems. These storms can literally rip the roof off of your home. If you have any spots on your ceiling it is an indication that some of the shingles have been damaged and leaks have begun from harsh rain or wind.

Snow may not seem like it can do much to affect a roof. It can when it piles up and gets icy. This puts a lot of weight on the roof and can weaken it causing it to collapse into the home.

storms and roofs

Check your gutters to see if there are any cracks or tears in the metal after a storm. If your roof and gutters were damaged severely, get yourself and your family somewhere safe and call 911. If moderate damage occurred, contact your local roofer. They will set about getting repairs done immediately.

If you have a legitimate insurance claim, your roofing company can help with filing it. They will work with your insurer to get the claim filed and get paid directly from the insurance company. This speeds up the repairs and takes a lot of stress off of your shoulders at an already difficult time.

Storms and harsh weather can easily damage a roof. Depending on where you live, certain storms may be more common than others. When you buy a new roof, make sure to consult with your local roofing company to find a durable material that will withstand the harshest weather conditions it will be exposed to.

Damage may not happen immediately. It can happen gradually after several storms. This is why it is so important to check your roof right after any serious weather occurs. If you notice any tears, curls or other damage, have your roof inspected by certified roof contractors right away.

Caring for your Pool Fence

pool fence maintenanceWhen you have a mortgage on a property you want to reduce those payments as much as possible. One of the easiest things to do is to DIY with as many easy jobs as possible. One of those jobs is pool fence care.

Correct care of your pool will not only help it to look great it will also help to increase the lifespan of the fence ultimately saving you money in the long term.’

Wash It Regularly

Dirt accumulates with time, meaning you won’t really notice it up until the damage has clearly been done. One moment you don’t see anything, and the following day it can seem to be a real mess. This is particularly true with storms. However, by cleaning the new pool fence regularly will extend its look and feel. This is especially valid in case the fence is made out of vulnerable materials like wood.

Check Locks and Hinges

Unfortunately, the lacks and gates tend to be the weakest point of the fence and can require the most maintenance. For those who have kids and pets, or else you are conscious of other kids that could be arriving at visit, ensure that the locks and hinges are secure. Accidents happen incredibly quickly, and also you don’t desire to take unnecessary risks. Depending on the material of you fence you may be able to use a lubricant to protect your locks and hinges

Apply a protective coating

Remember that pool fences come in many shapes and forms, caring for them will entail different approaches, for instance, if it’s a wood fence you’ll should protect it from the natural elements with special coatings such as a protective paint where as you may need a rust proof paint for an aluminium fence. When the fence is concrete, it’s bound to need a paint job so that you can look appealing, however it requires the right type of paint. You can always search online or ask at your local hardware store for the paint that suits your needs.

If you are in the Sydney area we highly recommend Pool Fencing Sydney for your scheduled pool fence maintenance.

Roofing Issues to be Aware of

roofsIdentifying many of the most common roof problems at the beginning can help save you a lot of money over time. It may well help save you from spending a fortune on complete roof replacement down the road. There are many common signs that may tell the homeowner that you will find a issue with his/her roof. Here are among the common roofing problems that you have to search for.

Poor or faulty installation

Poor or faulty installation is a type of roofing problem that can dramatically lessen the lifespan of your roof. A qualified and experienced roofing contractor should have installed the roof properly to avoid such problems. Moisture get underneath the layers in the roof over time on account of wind, rain, snow, hail, ice, and debris. This could result in leaks, rotting, and the spreading of mold around the roof. Preventive maintenance is very important to keep your roof clear of such issues. Make sure that you work with a reliable roofer in the community to keep the roof preventing it from deteriorating due to the aforementioned problems.

Flashing issues

Flashing is essential to seal areas in the roof which have been penetrated for a number of reasons such as vents, pipes, chimneys, skylights, or HVAC systems. Once the flashing is not really attached properly, it may cause open seams and make the tiles to blow off over time. For this reason it is essential to install the flashing properly. Make sure that you employ a professional roofing company when installing the flashing.

Pests and damage

Small birds and animals can affect the roof. If you discover such animals residing in your attic, you must eliminate them without delay to avoid them from damaging the rooftop. Water that ponds on the roof is another common issue affecting a lot of the roofs. A standard cause for this is improper drainage from HVAC systems and debris buildup about the roof. Overhanging tree limbs can cause damage to your roof as time passes. Hence, it is essential to cut such limbs before they grow into a challenge. These are one of the common roofing problems that you have to care for before it is too far gone.

 

Types Of Outdoor Lights For Different Needs

city at night

Lets face it your lights can make a big impact on your homes value and be a huge help when selling a property. Heres a look at some outdoor lighting options.

The kind of lighting you use for your front or backyard should be up to standard and suited to its purposes. Getting it right with the outdoor lighting will play a part in your overall landscaping efforts. The lights can play two roles, to beautify the place and promote security in your home. As such, making the right lighting choices is imperative. For that, you should know as much as you can about the different types of outdoor lights.

• Floodlights
These are lamp fixtures used to illuminate a large outdoor space. They are an ideal option if you are working on a tight budget yet desire to keep your backyard well lit.

• Wall Lights And Sconces
They are ideally used as decorative fixtures that can accentuate various décor elements on the wall and can also be used to make garden ornaments stand out in the dark. For instance, they can be installed on the pillars of a porch to enhance its aesthetics and that of the surroundings.

• Outdoor Ceiling Lights
When it comes to these lighting options, you can consider various options such as track lights, pendant lights, and chandelier lights among others. They are a common choice for indoor lightings but can work equally well in outdoor areas such as the patio, porch, or gazebo.

• Step Lighting
They are an excellent choice particularly if you have craggy pathways or steep steps. The lights come in different designs ranging from the standard types to those that come equipped with sensors that double up as security features.

• Fan Lights
Spending a warm summer night outside on your patio or porch will be more welcoming and comfortable if you have ample lighting and a fan that cools the place. For this, the fans that come fitted with lights can see you achieve both things by installing one fixture.

• Bollard Lights Are Boxed Lamps
These are lamps encased in a transparent material often installed to add lighting aesthetics to the garden. Place them next to an outdoor seating area also to help accentuate them at night.

• Underwater Lamps
They are designed to light up water mass such as the pond, swimming pool, water fountain, artificial stream or waterfall.

The beauty of most outdoor lights is that you can have them illuminate a different color based on their area of application. For instance, the floodlights should be emitting a bright light since they primarily work as security features. Underwater lamps, bollard lights, and wall lights can have different colored bulbs to create a decorative effect in your home.

Contact Electrician Geelong for all your outdoor electrical needs.

Get Started With Property Investment

Buying your first property can a be a nerve racking experience. Here we take a look at a few simple tricks to help calm those nerves and make the right decisions the first time.

  • Know your figures

Make sure you know all of your figures. If you can get a pre-approved loan that is even better, this way you know your limit. Remember you will need maintenance and repairs as required and also other expenses so you need to account for them accordingly.

  • Pick the right property for your needs

There are countless different properties out there that will fulfil a different amount of needs. Some may have a higher rental return whilst others are better for capital growth. Figure out your strategy early so you know exactly what sort of property suits your needs.

  • Be Patient

Don’t jump in too fast. One of the common mistakes is the fear of missing out and getting into the market too early. Make sure you take your time and wait for the right property for you. Keep in mind that selling and buying property isn’t really easy. That’s why you ought to learn utmost patience.

  • Plan ahead

Begin with setting your goals, determine where you aspire to end up and make a want to arrive. Consider your income and the sort of property to invest to assist you reach that income. If you are clear on where you are going getting there becomes so much easier.

  • Clear your emotions

Letting your emotions cloud your investment decisions can be a big mistake and can potentially lead you to spending an excessive amount of unnecessary capital. Know whether it’s a wise investment before jumping into it to make sound decisions from sound data. A great way to help you keep your emotions in check is to use a property investment expert that helps you through the process.

about getting started in the property market

Keep your home cool in the summer months

installation of air conditionerCould it be tiring to need to remain in a home that is certainly too hot through the summertime?

Many people complain about this nevertheless they don’t need to if they are set to concentrate on the solutions around them. Let’s look into advice from experts that state it is actually possible to stay cool in the summertime.

Keep the lights off

Did you know that many lights generate heat. A simple trick is to simply minimise the amount of lights that you have on.

Close the Curtains

It is advisable to close the curtains and blinds and, in many cases, invest in specific blinds that are reflective and keep the sunlight.

Use Your Bathroom Fans

This can a great investment. The main reason bathroom fans are very important has to do with their advantages as a suction-based solution. This is a great solution as they literally suck the hot air out of the room. This is a must for those that are tired of getting hot.

Insulation

Make sure that your home is properly insulated. There is a wide range of building insulation methods available that can significantly reduce your energy bill as well as reduce the heat in your home. This is a great way to reduce the work load of your AC.

Service your Air Conditioner

It is important to keep you air conditioning unit clean and serviced so that you get the best and most cost-effective performance from your unit.

Thank you to the guys at Air Conditioning Geelong for the info.

How To Prepare For The Plumber & The Repairs That Need To Be Made

plumbingNone of us like additional costs when we are paying off a mortgage but unfortunately sometimes the worst does happen. Plumbing can be one of the most common areas that need repairs after you have purchased a property. Here we look at minimizing the impact and how to prepare.

There are certain emergency plumbing situations, like a busted pipe, that don’t allow you too much time and preparation for the repairs to be made. Those instances are perhaps examples of when you need to be the most prepared, however, as you need to be able to shut off the water main and do a little cleanup. You don’t want water damage to occur, so cleanup is very important. Whether you have an emergency plumbing repair situation or not, let’s look at some tips that can help you get prepared for when the plumber arrives.

First, you are going to be calling the plumber of course. This means that you need to be as detailed as possible regarding what is going on with your plumbing. Sometimes the situation can be very cut and dry, but there are those times when it’s hard to discern what’s really going on at the time. That means you want to gather all of those little details and communicate them to the dispatcher. You could be speaking to the actual plumber, too, and in that case, you may be asked quite a few questions as well.

If you don’t really know what’s going on with your plumbing, what you can do is actually ask to speak to a plumber vs just the dispatcher. That will help you get a better understanding of what the problem might be. You also want to be sure that yo get in touch with a licensed plumber because that is the only type of professional you want handling this job. He or she needs the proper credentials; otherwise, you could be creating a larger problem in the end.

You know that you need a licensed and qualified, also insured, plumber. You know to ask about experience and even to check references if you have time. As for waiting for the plumbing professional to get to your home, how much time do you have? One common courtesy is to make sure that the work area is clear. You will have hired a responsible plumber who will do whatever is necessary the right way and not damage your belongings. However, you can help expedite the repair situation and be courteous by moving things and clearing the area.

When it comes to renovations, you can even do things like removing tiles so that plumbers can get to the fixtures much easier. Of course, it could be that you have a different contractor doing that, or the plumber can even do whatever is necessary to get to the plumbing that needs worked on in your home.

If you are in a situation where you need to turn off the water main, you will certainly want to check on that, too. It is different with each home, but there are general rules of thumb for helping you find your water main and get the water turned off before the plumber arrives. As you can see, the more you can do the better as you are waiting for the plumber to show up and get the job done.

Does Your Home Need Roof Ventilation?

Roof Restoration

When understanding whether or not your home needs roof ventilation, it is important to know what the benefits of roof ventilation are. You would think that roof ventilation is indeed necessary, but do you have to take extra steps to get the job done? Perhaps what is in place already is good enough. Maybe you are having a home built, and you are trying to decide on what to do. You know ceilings need ventilation. Does your home have an attic? Attic ventilation helps your roof and your home in general, but what about roof ventilation. What do you need to know?

The first thing that you need to do is to look at the two types of ventilation in order to better understand matters. There is natural ventilation of course, and then there is mechanical ventilation. When it comes to natural ventilation, you have both the stack and wind effects working in your favour. As a matter of fact, they work in conjunction with one another and in completely opposite ways and directions. One is the exhaust feature, and one is the intake feature.

Then there are of course exhaust vents, of which the most common example would be ridge vents. There are also other types of exhaust vents that can be used to help give roofs the proper ventilation that they need. They are commonly known as whirly birds in Australia. However, it must be mentioned that intake of cooler air is required when it comes to all of the exhaust managing to leave through the ventilation system, hence the two processes mentioned earlier that work in conjunction with one another.

What are you going to be reliant upon as a homeowner in terms of the intake part of the equation? There are intake vents that handle that job. Now that we have looked more closely at how roof ventilation works, let’s talk about three benefits for you to think about. They are going to convince you to further evaluate your roof ventilation system so that you have everything properly set up.

You want your roof to last a long time. That’s a given, and it should be mentioned that one of the main benefits is that proper ventilation indeed helps ensure that a roof is going to last. While you are thinking about these benefits, you are also surely wondering how you can tell if your roof has the proper ventilation it needs. You can always count on the professionals to give you a helping hand and evaluate the situation.

Proper ventilation for a roof and a home in general also helps to reduce energy costs. Did you know that was going to be a benefit? You might have thought it was going to be the exact opposite. On top of reducing energy cost, you can also count on reduced extreme temperatures indoors. That is going to help, too, as those two benefits kind of go hand in hand. So now you know why it’s so important for a roof to be properly ventilated, as it affects your entire home in general.

For proper assessment and advice, get in contact with the boys from Roof Restoration Sutherland Shire.

Buying A Home – The Importance Of Inspecting The Roof

Roof Restoration

Purchasing your home is a huge financial decision and there are always things that can go against a positive outcome to cause you financial distress. One such item are issues with the building’s roof that can often be overlooked. This article discusses the importance of getting the roof inspected before purchasing. (Information in this article has been supplied by the team at Roof Restoration Penrith).

As part of a process of buying a home, you’ll need to carry out a building inspection. Generally, a decent building inspector will include a thorough inspection of the roof, however some may not get up on the roof and carry a basic visual inspection of the roof from the top.

It is in your best interests to ensure the roof is inspected thoroughly. It goes without saying that a roof replacement or a roof restoration can be an expense that can leave you out of pocket for thousands of dollars.

Make sure you quiz your building inspector about how thoroughly they inspected the roof.

A handy tip is to carry out a brief inspection yourself. This is not to suggest that you actually get on the roof yourself, please don’t, but if you can see the roof from the ground or from the neighbours or even from the road cast your eyes about. Look for issues such as broken and cracked tiles, dislodged tiles, missing mortar from the ridge capping and in the case of metals roofs look for rusty sheets and/or sheets that don’t appear screwed down.

If you spot any of these issues, insist that the roof is inspected thoroughly. Many of these issues may indicate further problems with the roof which may not be visible to the untrained eye.

Any issues found with your roof can be used to negotiate for a cheaper price for the house. Or if you are not emotionally attached to purchasing this house, it could be an indicator to just walk away from this one.

Most decent roofing companies will be happy to assist in this process and happily provide you with an inspection report prior to purchase. There maybe a small fee involved but the potential losses that can be avoided are well worth the investment.

Hopefully we have been able to convince you how important it is to have the roof thoroughly inspected before purchasing a home. As suggested, if you have any doubts, give your local roofing experts a call and seek professional advice.