Category: Cleaning

Nov 17

Learn How To Save Paper

Learn How To Save Paper (courtesy of Howcast.com)

Think green, and you’ll learn how to save trees, and maybe put a little green in your pocket! You will need:

Shop eco-friendly

Use electronic devices

Rethink your print practices

Reusable containers

Cloth napkins and handkerchiefs

Recycled toilet paper

Shop eco-friendly by buying products in bulk or concentrate, to reduce paper packaging waste. Choose products with minimal packaging. Nails, screws, wire and other hardware items may be purchased loose from many home improvement stores to reduce paper packaging.

Step 2 – Go electronic, and text yourself to-do lists and memos. Send e-cards, pay bills online, eliminate junk mail and invest in an e-reader.

Step 3 – Change your print practices to include using the print range feature, to print only what is needed. Use the double-sided printing feature, and email documents whenever possible.

Step 4 – Use reusable containers, napkins and handkerchiefs.

Step 5 – Make the switch to toilet paper and other items produced with recycled paper, and next time you hug a tree, you might get a hug back!

Did you know? Experts estimate that between 2000 and 2005, about 1% of the planet’s total forested area disappeared.

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Oct 06

Learn How To Maintain Your Gutters

How To Maintain Your Gutters (courtesy of Lowes.com)

Welcome! I’m Courtney. Where is Joel? Right where you’d expect to find him – in the gutter!

Hilarious! Here, I think you missed something, Courtney. Gutter maintenance is not the most fun of chores, but, it is essential in preserving your home. Here are a few things you’ll need to get at your gutters!

A ladder

A bucket to collect your debris

A trowel of some kind for scooping out the gutter gunk

A garden hose to wash out the gutter

A pair of gloves to protest your hands

Ideally, you want to clean out your gutters a couple times a year. Spring and fall are good times. The great thing about gutters is that they keep water away from your windows and walls, as well as your home’s foundation, by sending the water down and out these spouts.

The downside of gutters is that, if they’re not cleaned properly, water will gather in them, and they will damage your roof.

If it’s been dry, removing gutter stuff may only take a good blast from your blower. However, if the dirt and leaves in your gutter are wet, you’re gonna need to get a tool like this gutter scoop, or a trowel, to get it out. Be careful not to damage or scratch your gutter.

Once you get the big stuff out of the gutter, it’s not a bad idea to flush out the whole gutter channel with your garden hose. It helps clean them out, and will help identify any areas that aren’t completely unclogged.

Installing guards is easy, and can go a long way towards reducing the amount of stuff that can get in your gutters and clog them.

One you get your gutters clean, you may find some leaky spots. These can be fixed nice and quick, by applying a little spot caulk to the inside of the gutter. If you discover larger holes or corroded sections in your gutters, you’ll need to get some patch made from the same material as your gutters. This can be laid inside, over the damaged area, set in place with epoxy and roofing cement.

You may find that sections of your gutter are sagging. This is usually a case of the nails working themselves loose. Try resetting them with a hammer, and, if they won’t hold, you replace the nails with screws!

And, that’s the 101 on your gutters. Later!

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Oct 04

Learn How To Dust-Proof Your Home

How To Dust-proof Your Home (courtesy of Howcast.com)

Arm yourself with these proven strategies to banish dust from your home! You will need:

Mattress and pillow covers

Vacuum cleaner

Damp mop

Product to spray rags for dusting

HEPA air filter for the furnace

Portable HEPA filter unit

Optional:

Wood, vinyl or tile flooring

Shades or blinds

A HEPA filter for your vacuum

An old tennis racket

Step 1 – Understand that dust comes from the tiny flakes of skin we constantly shed, fibers shed by fabrics, insect parts, pet dander, hair, pollen grains, mold spores and dust mites.

Step 2 – Learn the places where dust hides, such as deep inside carpet, drapery, upholstered furniture, mattresses, and on hard surfaces, including all of those knick-knacks decorating your home. If you can, replace wall-to-wall carpeting with wood, vinyl or tile, and drapes, shades or blinds that are easier to keep free of dust.

Step 3 – Enclose your mattresses and pillows in zippered, dust-proof covers. If you don’t like plastic or vinyl, look for fabric allergy-impermeable covers.

Step 4 – Vacuum the carpeting and un-upholstered furniture frequently. Damp mop floors and walls. Attaching a HEPA filter, available at some vacuum stores and allergy supply companies
to your vacuum cleaner, will prevent some of that dust from circulating back into the air.

Step 5 – Take your area rugs and cushions outside and shake them vigorously, or beat them every week. Some people like to use an old tennis racket.

Step 6 – Don’t just move the dust around with a feather duster or dry rags – capture it! Use damp rags, or, spray rags with a product that will hold the dust.

Step 7 – Wash sheets and blankets in hot water every week. Cold water leaves up to 10% of dust mites behind. Dry cleaning also kills mites.

Step 8 – Install a HEPA air filter on your furnace, or, purchase a central air filtration unit if you have forced air heating and cooling. A portable HEPA filter unit may also help remove dust from the air.

Did you know? A typical, used mattress can have up to 10 million dust mites inside!

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Jan 17

Learn How To Polish Silver

Learn How To Polish Silver (courtesy of MyHomeIdeas.com)

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Oct 26

Learn How To Rid Your Home Of Spiders

How To Rid Your Home Of Spiders (courtesy of Howcast.com)

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Oct 08

Learn How To Get Rid Of Fruit Flies

How To Get Rid Of Fruit Flies (courtesy of Chow.com)

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Apr 14

Garage Sale How-to

How To Have A Garage Sale (courtesy of Better.tv)

It’s time to put up the signs and make a little cash! Yep, it’s yard sale season! But, before you clean out your garage, Nicole has a step-by-step guide to throwing a profitable yard sale, and how to do your part for the environment.

Usually, I’m showing you where to spend your money. But today, I’m gonna show you how to make some money at a garage sale! They can usually be very time consuming, but they can also be profitable. How? I’ll show you!

We’re open for business! Just kidding – they’re fake – and they’re dirty. First things first is to clean all of your items, because obviously they’re going to sell better if they look presentable. And then, after that, you have to price everything. Don’t skip this step, because it’s gonna cut down on negotiation. They make labels right in your regular grocery store that you can just pick up. Or, you can get these kind, at like an office supply. For bigger ticket items, those are nice. You can just tape them right to your items. If you don’t know what to price your garage sale items at, 15% of what you paid retail is usually the standard.

Now, when it comes to sets, there’s 2 ways of thought. These coasters – there’s 4 of them. I don’t want to get stuck with just one, so I’ve tied them up – it’s $.50 for all 4. But, these candle holders are $1.00 each, and if I was stuck with just one, it wouldn’t be that big a deal. So I’ve priced them individually. It would be $2.00 for the pair. And, they’ll probably ask if I’ll take $1.50 and, of course I will – and you should, too!

So, when it’s time to bring your merchandise outside, try to bring your furniture as close to the street as possible. It’s the one thing that drive-by buyers are really looking for, because of the higher retail prices of furniture.

And then, organize your items. These boxes are available at any moving supply store, and they’re perfect for garage sales! We did kids on this side, adults on this side. And everything is hung up, so buyers don’t have to wonder what it is.

The burden of proof that things work is your responsibility, so plan to have some power at your next sale. That way, people can test out items. Also, have some batteries for the hand-held devices. Now, you don’t want people in your home, so don’t offer to let them test anything inside. Just drag out an extension cord. Also, make it very clear where the sale ends, so you have no stragglers back there where they don’t belong.

If you have kids in your family, it’s good to give them a job, so they’re not under your feet. It’s also hard for drivers to drive by a cute little kid selling lemonade! And, if you have kids coming with parents to your garage sale, it’s good to put the wee one’s merchandise at the back of the sale, and low. One, because you want them to get attached to it, and they can’t do that if they can’t see it. And, you want to put it all the way back in the sale, so parents don’t have to worry about their kids in the traffic. Happy parents spend more money!

Alright! Well, garage sales can be a great way to recycle, reuse and reduce. And, it can afford you new funds to go shopping! For BetterTV, I’m Nicole Camarady, wishing you Happy Garage Sale-ing!

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