Renovation

January Home Maintenance Tips

Posted by on Jan 3, 2019 in Renovation | 0 comments

Anyone who lives in a cold climate knows that winter can be especially hard on a house. This winter take all the necessary precautions ahead of time so you can keep warm and save some money along the way. If you follow these winter home maintenance tips you’ll be well on your way. A couple of these things have already been covered in my Fall Home Maintenance Checklist, and if you’ve crossed them off your list you’re in good shape. But there are a couple of things specific to areas that get snow and ice that should be taken into consideration. Exterior Use binoculars to check the roof for missing or damaged shingles before the first snowfall. Missing or damaged shingles can lead to water leaks in winter as there’s often snow left sitting on the roof.Remove leaves and other debris from gutters so that melted rain and snow can drain properly.Add extensions to downspouts if necessary so that water from melting snow runs 3-4 feet away from the house.Tie up your evergreen trees and shrubs so that they don’t become permanently misshapen under the weight of ice and snow.Turn off exterior faucets – undrained water in pipes can freeze which can cause pipes to burst as ice expands.Prevent door locks from freezing before it happens. Spray a small amount of powdered-graphite lubricant into each lock once a season. In a pinch you can also put some Vaseline on the key and the turn the key in the lock.Stock up on salt and/or snow-melt and make sure your shovel is placed in a easy-to-reach spot.If you have a snowblower make sure it’s fuelled up and ready to go. Interior Tune up your heating system. Make sure furnace is properly maintained and change the furnace filters.If you have a wood-burning fireplace get it cleaned and inspected by a certified chimney sweep. Built-up creosote and soot can ignite and cause a fire.Repair leaks in any drafty areas. Windows and doors may require caulking or new weather stripping, baseboards may require caulking, and electrical outlets may need insulation gaskets. These minor upgrades can save you a ton on your heating bill.Check heating ducts and clean out any large amounts of dust or animal hair.Reverse ceiling fans to force warm air downward.Check operation of smoke and CO detectors. These always need to be in good working order but the new season is a good time to check them – particularly with all of the heating elements about to be added to the house.Cover any exposed pipes that run along exterior walls or are in unheated areas with pipe insulation. Failure to do so could result in burst pipes if the temperature drops low enough.If you have an attic hatch with a pull-down ladder consider getting an insulated cover. Other wise you’re leaving a pretty big area for cold air to get through. The best way to preserve and maintain your home’s value is with regular and consistent maintenance. So take care of problems BEFORE they become...

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Winter Renovations Can Be Done With Proper Precautions

Posted by on Dec 13, 2018 in Renovation | 0 comments

Winter Renovations Can Be Done With Proper Precautions

Winter might seem like an unusual time to begin a renovation. But with the right knowledge and a bit of preparation, it can be a great time to add value to your home. The secret to a successful winter renovation is good planning and working closely with your renovator,  Talking to your renovator in advance about potential challenges can help you save time and money in the long run. Snow and cold weather are two of the biggest factors in a winter renovation and they require precautionary measures so nothing is left to chance. Major renovations often require you to move out of your home for a few weeks. To ensure that your contractor has easy access to and from your home, you’ll need to make arrangements for shoveling snow and salting steps in your absence.Some renovation companies may offer the service but you’ll need to discuss it in advance. It may come at an added cost, so make sure it is noted in your renovation contract. When you move out of your home, it will likely cool down significantly, even if the heat is still on. This increases the chance of water freezing inside your pipes, which could cause them to burst. To minimize the risk, have a plumber heat the water line coming into your house or call your municipality to shut the water off at the street side. Homeowners doing a winter renovation in semi-detached houses or townhomes need to be mindful of how it may affect their neighbours. These types of homes have shared walls, and if the temperature in your home drops significantly it can affect the comfort level of those living on the other side of the wall. If the shared wall is not properly insulated, talk to your renovator about installing some temporary insulation to prevent heat loss. This is another issue that should be discussed in advance as it may result in additional fees. Specialprecautions may be required when renovating homes with flat roofs. Major renovations or additions may compromise the structural durability of the home. Snow can build up on the roof and if your home is not structurally finished, it may not hold up the weight. For an added fee, your renovator can have someone shovel the snow or have an electrician install a specialized heater. After the renovation, you can choose whether to remove the heater or leave it to prevent snow permanently. It is very important that your contract outline the full scope of work and all associated costs. Avoid renovators who urge you to forego a written contract. Verbal agreements make it hard for you to hold your renovator accountable and you will not have a point of reference if there is a conflict over payment. Make sure you always work with a professional renovator. A good place to find one is at www.homestars.com —home of the contractor directory and read our reviews. All HomeStars reviews are unbiased and Manalco Contracting has no control over what is written about our services.  These are accurate and up to date reviews. In addition to providing a written contract, Manalco Contracting offers a minimum two-year warranty, are covered by at least $2 million’s worth of liability insurance and carry all applicable licences and...

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“BEST of 2018”

Posted by on Dec 6, 2018 in Renovation | 0 comments

“BEST of 2018”

  We are so proud to be chosen “BEST of 2018” from HomeStars! Thanks to every one at Manalco Contracting for doing the best we can to look out for our customers.  People are taking notice! We also what to send out a thank you to all the wonder customers that voted for us on homestars.  Your kind recommendations and referrals have helped us so much! Thank you to all that have trusted us with their renovation projects! We are all very excited! Bring of 2019!   Regards, Kevin Clarke Renovations Manager...

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Pros of Fixing Siding in the Winter

Posted by on Dec 5, 2018 in Renovation | 0 comments

Pros of Fixing Siding in the Winter

Canada brings with it excessive snow, chilly temperatures, and biting winds – conditions that can be tough on your home’s exterior. Quality siding – whether wood, stone cladding or vinyl will help defend your house against nature’s harshest elements. If you’re considering exterior renovations, there can be benefits to undertaking work in the wintertime.     To help inform your decision, we’ve put together a list of pros and cons of working on siding in the winter: The Pros: 1.  Convenient Installation and Lower Costs For most contractors, winter is a slower time of year. That’s good news if you’re looking to have work done on your home. Crews will be more flexible and have greater availability, making it easier to complete the project efficiently. Due to the decreased demand, you’ll also be able to enjoy more competitive rates. 2.   Avoid Side Effects of Summer Heat on Paint and Vinyl Siding Like Goldilocks, paint likes the temperature neither too cold nor too hot. It has to be just right. If your home’s exterior surfaces are too hot (their temperatures can be five to eleven degrees higher than the air around them) good paint film will be unable to form, triggering problems down the road. Vinyl Siding can be equally sensitive. It’s prone to expanding in the summer heat, which can cause it to buckle if it’s nailed too tightly during installation. 3.  Stop Problems in Their Tracks If you find problems – whether cracks, missing pieces, or discolouration – you need to get them assessed fast. If moisture seeps under your siding, it can cause further costly damage to your home’s exterior. Cold temperatures will also exacerbate existing issues. With a material like wood, water that permeates gaps will freeze in cold weather, expanding cracks and aggravating damage. The Cons 1. Harsh Winter Weather Winter weather can be challenging for crews working on your home. If it’s too cold or there’s too much snow or ice, they might not be able to undertake work. Experienced contractors will know the limits of their own teams. They’ll be able to communicate these to you, and ensure work is completed efficiently without compromising their crews’ well-being. 2. Delayed Completion Although the weather can be unpredictable in any season, the effects can be more pronounced in the winter. Frigid temperatures and unexpected storms might delay work by a few hours or even a few days. If there is excessive snow buildup, contractors might not be able to start the process until spring, as they will not be able to access your walls. 3. Cold-Sensitive Materials and Equipment Like people, equipment and materials can be sensitive to wintry temperatures. Contractors must be careful with vinyl siding, which can become brittle and more prone to cracking. Many paint manufacturers also caution against applying their products in the cold. If paint doesn’t dry properly, it will compromise your home’s moisture barrier and cause problems later on. The performance of a pneumatic drill, which is responsible for driving nails to secure siding in place, is also compromised by winter chills. It might need to be warmed up periodically throughout the day and should be drained regularly to prevent fluids from freezing. When not in use, it should be kept in a heated, dry area to prevent moisture from accumulating in the lines. Maintaining Your Siding To keep your siding healthy and vibrant for years to come, routine maintenance is key: Caulking: Do a thorough check around vents, doors, and windows. If damage is minor, you can re-caulk it yourself. If it looks more significant you’re suspicious moisture may have penetrated, get it inspected so you don’t seal moisture in and create bigger problems for...

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Fall Maintenance for your Home

Posted by on Sep 27, 2018 in Renovation | 0 comments

Fall Maintenance for your Home

Fall is a good time to take care of big home repair projects before shorter days (and in many areas, ice and snow) make outdoor work too difficult. And if you do live in an area with cold winters, take some time this fall to boost energy efficiency throughout your home, and prevent damage from winter storms with proper tree care (we spoke with an expert to find out what you need to do). Tick these 15 items off your list this season, and you can rest easy knowing that your home and yard are buttoned up and ready for winter. 1. Care for trees and shrubs. If you have trees on your property, consider hiring an arborist to care for them — these pros can spot signs of poor health early on to prevent tree loss, and know how to prune properly to avoid falling limbs in winter storms. The most important maintenance for a homeowner to do in the fall would be trimming [the] dead out of trees,” says Bryan Gilles, owner and arborist at Arbor Doctor. “Trees are going dormant at this time, and are less likely to get a disease.” Because trees are slowing growth in the fall, it’s not an ideal time to plant a new tree, as the roots may have trouble getting established. For treatments, Gilles recommends fungicide injections in the fall to prevent diseases such as diplodia, which can affect pine trees. It’s also a good idea to observe your trees throughout the fall, keeping an eye out for signs that signal a need for intervention. “Early change in leaf color, pines looking thin and/or needles turning brown, and dead branches are all signs of diseases,” Gilles says. “Ash trees spotting yellow sporadically around this time of the year is a bad sign of a disease called ash yellows, since ash trees are one of the latest to turn.” 2. Rake leaves. Leaves look beautiful blanketing the ground, but leaving too many leaves on a lawn over winter in a snowy area can inhibit spring growth. To make the job easier, choose a lightweight rake, wear gloves to protect your hands and use handheld “leaf scoops” to bag leaves quickly. 3. Clean gutters and downspouts. Once most of the leaves have fallen, clean out gutters and downspouts (hire a helper if you are not comfortable on a ladder). Clogged gutters during rainstorms can cause water to pool and damage your roof or siding. 4. Make exterior repairs. Take a walk around your property, looking for signs of damage to the roof, siding and foundation. If you spot anything that needs repair, schedule it before winter weather hits. 5. Seal gaps where critters could enter. Mice need only a tiny gap to be able to sneak into your house and raid your pantry — and with colder weather coming, all of the little critters out there will be looking for warm places to make a home. Fill small holes and cover any larger gaps securely with heavy-duty hardware cloth to keep the wildlife outdoors. 6. Check walkways, railings, stairs and the driveway for winter safety. When the landscape is covered in ice and snow, just walking from the driveway to the front door can be quite a challenging. Make navigating around your home safer by checking that all stairs are in good shape and have sturdy railings, and that the driveway is in good repair to make for easier shoveling. 7. Stock up on winter supplies. If you live in a region with cold, snowy winters, fall is the time to prepare. -Check the condition of snow shovels and...

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Refacing Whitby Shores Corner House

Posted by on Aug 1, 2018 in Renovation | 0 comments

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