Friday, May 30, 2014

How to Stay Cool this Summer in Agoura Hills

Worried about how to stay cool this summer in Agoura Hills without spending a fortune on air conditioning? Don’t want to come home after a long day at work to heat and humidity? The easy solution of course is to turn on the air conditioning, but that uses up money and energy. It’s just not sound anymore for your wallet or for the environment. In fact, in many locations, the electric company offers discounts for people willing to allow their a/c to be turned off on certain days when energy is at a premium.

With this in mind, what is the alternative to using that air conditioning? Here are some tips.

Use fans whenever you can. Ceiling fans save energy and are proven to reduce temperature by around six degrees. And if you’re going out - turn them off, because they use power, too.

Set your thermostat to 78 degrees or higher and leave it there - but if you’re away at work all day, set it even five degrees higher.

Get a programmable thermostat. Inexpensive and easy to install,  you can program your home’s temperature to fit your schedule.

Clean or change your air conditioner’s filter yearly to make sure your unit is working well. Dirty filters mean less air flow and less efficiency.

At dinner time, don’t use the oven! Use the range or the microwave, or make a salad  - or cook several meals at once, preferably in the evening, when things have cooled down for the day.

Consider doing dishes by hand so that you can avoid that heat setting on your dishwasher’s drying cycle. Wait until you’ve filled the dishwasher before you run it to save energy.

Try to use dishwasher, dryer, and stove after the sun goes down or early in the morning - that way you won’t be adding more heat to your home when it’s hot outside.

Even your lighting can help you keep things cool - compact fluorescent light bulbs use 75% less energy and generate 75% less heat than standard bulbs!

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Agoura Hills Plumbing Service

Drains, drains - they won’t go away. You wouldn’t want them to - you need them - in your bathroom, in your kitchen sink. You use them all the time, and like anything that receives heavy use, problems can occur. With kitchen drains, grease and food waste can stick and make drains run slowly or clog and back up - and you won’t want to be washing dishes until the issue is resolved!

In the bathroom, hair, soap, and grime are the build up culprits. Keep an eye on your shower and tub - before a drain becomes completely clogged it may simply run slowly. That’s not normal - water should drain right away when you shower, and rapidly post-bath.

Toilets can also be problematic. Whether it’s an excess of toilet paper or accidentally flushing baby wipes or facial tissue which dissolves less easily than toilet paper, clogs do happen. A plumbers’ snake is usually the easiest way to cut through the clog and clean the drain at the same time.

Then there are the drains you may not usually even consider - ground level drains such as drains on patios, in driveways, or laundry rooms. These drains usually contain a trap that can get clogged, causing back up.

Using drains everyday means that over time, almost inevitably, there’s going to be a clog or two. You can try to prevent this by using a drain filter in the bathroom to catch hair, running hot water anytime you put anything down a drain, pouring boiling water into a mildly clogged drain and being patient, adding more and more hot water until the clog - whatever it may be - dissolves.

But none of these measures help all the time. Sometimes you need to bring in a pro to do the cleaning. And you want to make sure you’re working with someone who knows what they are doing. Find an expert Agoura Hills plumbing service and  get rid of that clog fast and efficiently, or prevent it from happening in the first place with professional cleaning before a problem arises.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Summer in Agoura Hills

What are you doing to make summer special? Commencing the summer season is all about longer days and warmer evenings, meaning you can spread out your fun

Of course, there’s the outdoor bar-b-q. Make yours healthy with grilled veggies or fish. Or try a veggie burger!

Beach going, or heading pool side? Stock up on that sunscreen, and don’t forget a hat. The sun is fun - and a great source of Vitamin D, but overexposure and sunburn can be painful later. There’s a whole new easy era of sun protection out there - check out the new beach umbrellas that allow you to twist them easily into the sand, no more digging and hoping the wind won’t carry your handiwork away. By the pool, portable umbrellas can be clipped to loungers or tables to get any needed shade.

And don’t forget exercise! Get outdoors when you can. Take a swim or an evening run instead of staying on that treadmill at the gym. This is the time to take on a new activity, whether it’s early morning tennis or weekend golf. Or maybe just a game of Frisbee in your backyard or local park.

Home is where the heart and the summertime fun is - so get your house ready for the season. Maybe you need a new ceiling fan to cool your halls, or you have an air conditioner that needs servicing. With all the summer entertaining you’re sure to do, check your drains - sun screen or sand can clog your shower; grease from your grill become a hazard for your sink.

And what about vacation time? Are you traveling or staying at home? Whichever you have in mind, whether you’re taking a trip to an exotic beach front or a family drive to Yosemite, map out some time for just plain relaxing. And if you’re staying in town, don’t be shy - check out community classes, art galleries, the local music scene right here in Agoura Hills.


Thursday, May 15, 2014

Agoura Hills Plumbing Service

Just as it’s important to have a primary physician for your body, and a mechanic you can trust to maintain your car, your home’s health requires the use of professional services. Like plumbing. You may very well need to have a professional available to repair your roof, or repave your driveway, but let’s face it, how many times over the course of your residency will you need either of those services to take place?

But plumbing - plumbing assistance is just a fact of life with home ownership. Sure, you can minimize the need for this assistance by regularly maintaining your drains, being careful what you put down them, using filters and the like. But pipes wear and sometimes break, toilets sometimes overflow or clog.

And when you need to bring in a professional Agoura Hills plumbing service, you need to find the right service. Talking to neighbors and friends is one simple way to get a recommendation. Reading online recommendation sites is another. And referring to a plumbers website is another. However you narrow your plumbing choices, do spend some time looking at the services a plumber can offer. Does the plumber perform repair work only, or can he or she provide installation? After all, sometimes a leaky tub means you’d prefer to get a new one installed to replace it, and why not utilize the same provider, and keep things simple.  Also, check the plumber’s location. Local orientation means faster and more efficient service - whether it’s a routine visit or a middle of the night emergency.

And, check the plumber’s hours. Can you count on help if an emergency does occur, or does the provider work only 8-5 on weekdays? Also, how long has the plumber been in business? Experience does count.

Assessing all this information is key to finding the best plumber for you: local, skilled, and experienced.