HowTos

How To – Building Wood Porch Stairs

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    So, now that you built your deck you need a way to get off of it and stairs are a great way to do that.

    The first thing you need to do is decide of you will be building the stair stringers (things that hold the stair tread steps) yourself or if you will be buying some pre-cut ones at the lumber yard.  The cost of buying them isn’t that much and if you haven’t …

    Making A Concrete Pad For Porch Steps

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      When you are building your porch or deck one of the last things you will need to do is build your steps.

      You have many choices you can attach your step stringers to your rim joist of the deck with a header and then use a ground contact rated pressure treated footer at the bottom or you can go an additional step and pour a pad at the bottom of your steps …

      Storm Emergency Preparedness

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        No one can really predict the problems that come with storms but if you live in an area that has seen storm emergencies before you can probably count on them happening again.

        Some simple inexpensive steps can be taken to reduce an emergency to a mild discomfort to your day to day life and with a little planing you can probably get through a few days or even a couple weeks without having to …

        What Are Flood Zones and X Heights

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          Flood Zones
          Flooding is one of the most dangerous situations for most people. Most people think that flooding can only occur around large rivers or at the ocean but there are many factors that can cause flash floods in areas that normally are dry during heavy rains.

          For this reason the federal government has performed studies of flood prone areas and assigned them X Zone Information. This data can be used by a number of people including your …

          Understanding Extended Service Plans

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            Most Manufacturers will offer some type of standard Warranty for their products. This may be a 1 year parts and labor coverage or a lifetime limited service plan. The difference depends on the product and the manufacturer.

            Understanding the coverage that you have and any additional plans offered by your contractor or retailer is important when you purchase any item.

            First is unconditional returns – Most large retailers will offer a 30- 60 or even a 90 day unconditional return policy. This means …

            How To – Grow Cucumbers

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              Cucumbers are one of the easiest crops for a home gardener to grow. With enough space, sunlight, water and food cucumbers will grow fast during the summer providing a variety of different uses.

              From Pickling to slicing up for salads there are  a large variety of cucumbers that you can try in your garden. Although the selection may be wide the care of the plants is basically the same.

              Cucumbers are actually a …

              How To – Growing Cauliflower

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                Cauliflower is one of the most popular vegetables for home gardeners. Although many people attempt growing cauliflower from seed doing so will probably result in poor results for the beginner.

                Belonging to the cole family along with broccoli, brussels sprouts, collards, kale, kohlrabi and, of course, cabbage.

                Start your plants early in spring or late summer. They like the bright cooler days  60F – 80F to promote good growth and will resist some colder days in fall.

                Soil Quality
                Soil should …

                How To – Growing Beets

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                  Beets are one of the easier nutritious plants to grow in your garden. Although most people stick to the beet root you can also eat the greens in salads or cook them like you would turnips.

                  Starting them in early spring they like the bright cooler days of 60F – 70F to promote good growth.

                  Soil Quality
                  Your soil should be well tilled to allow easy growth of the root bulb. If you have clay soil you …

                  Active Solar Heating

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                    Active Solar depends on movement from a collector to the area that the heat will be used. Sometimes the heat is used for water heating and other times it is used for space heating.

                    There are two basic types of active heat collection: Air and Liquid.

                    Hot water heating is a good example of an Active Liquid Heating System.

                    A collector is placed on the roof of the building and a insulated hot water storage tank …

                    How To – Soil Testing

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                      Soil Testing is a great way to understand more about your lawn and garden. There are a variety of tests that can be performed by the home owner but a professional testing service can give you more accurate information about the chemical makeup of your soil. This is important for different types of plants vegetables and lawns.

                      Most plants will grow in a range of 6.1 to 6.9 ph level this means the soil …