Donating What You Don’t Need

The time has come to go through and clear what has become clutter in your own home. Hopefully, you can give the items more life and someone else the opportunity to have the use of these items. After all one man’s trash is another man’s treasure right? The answer is maybe not. There are some things that donation centers are unable to accept. Here are a few of those items and some ideas.

Mattresses and box springs 

Due to the issue of sanitation most donation places are not able to accept mattresses and box springs because they cannot guarantee that they are free from bed bugs, mites, or any other undesirable extras hidden away inside. Thankfully when you purchase a new mattress if you have it delivered the option may be available for them to haul away your old one for you. 

Large appliances 

Nowadays more often than not when someone is looking to purchase large appliances, they would instead get new products and ensure the use of their purchase for years to come. With cheaper choices available and the option to finance becoming open to more and more consumers donation centers are not as willing to accepting these donations. Other opportunities to purge them from your house are to put it in a garage sale or want ads of your choice. If you are purchasing a new appliance, many large stores will offer to haul away your old ones for you. Something that you may consider for your large appliances is your local scrap metal yard as they usually purchase these types of items for their metal value. 

Old, worn, stained or broken items 

Needless to say, if an article is any of the above, it is beyond going to a donation center. These are items that just need to go into the recycle or trash bin. 

Additional considerations

Things that have been left over from garage sales, items that you received for free or for participation, anything with the potential to grow mold and anything vulgar or offensive are good things to put on the curb instead of the donation pile. Check around to see if any places around you are willing to accept large and/or unwieldy items since some organizations just don’t have the room for these. 

To sum it up 

Try to make sure that what you are donating isn’t actually a trash item and if you cannot find a donation center that is willing or able to accept what you have to offer then make sure that you follow your city’s ordinances for disposal or recycling. Enjoy your clutter free home with the assurance that you have given a second chance to items that you can and helped give back to your community. Ask your real estate agent to recommend the best donation locations.

How to Use A Stain Kit to Freshen Up Your Sidewalks

Many people have sidewalks or some form of concrete walkway in their yards. While this is a great way to create a path to and from the street or garden, it can be a bit of an eyesore, especially if it has been worn down from the weather. It can be very costly to have the sidewalk redone or even more expensive to remove it. Instead, look for a better option and dress it up by adding some elegance to it. 

You can do this by applying a staining kit. The application will only take a few hours, and before you know it, you will have a gorgeous sidewalk that your neighbors will envy.

Applying Your Stain Kit

Using a stain kit is easy and only requires a few simple steps. Make certain you read the manufacturer’s instructions thoroughly before applying any product to your existing sidewalks or other concrete surfaces.

  1. Clean Your Surface. Cleaning is best done using a pressure washer or a high-velocity hose if you have one. The reason you want to clean your sidewalk or concrete surface first is so that your stain is applied directly to the concrete and not the dirt, mud or mildew that may have developed over time. Make sure your sidewalk or surface is completely dry before applying the stain.
  2. Apply the Stain. Most kits come with the materials you need to apply the product. These include the sprayer, the stain, a sealant, and gloves. Apply the stain using the sprayer or a roller brush, if you desire. In the kits, there are usually multiple colors to apply, so be sure to follow the manufacturer’s guidelines for the look you want. Once you have finished using the stain, you can apply the sealant.
  3. Allow your Stain to Completely Dry. Complete drying is essential if you do not want to risk the quality and look of your surface. Each stain kit will have its own guidelines for drying times. Use caution when working on or around the concrete surface as they tend to be slippery when wet.

If you do not have a sidewalk, a stain kit is useful on many different concrete surfaces including a garage floor, a driveway or a concrete wall. The kits come in many different colors for you to choose from and add your personal touch to your home. Check your local hardware store for good stain kits for your sidewalks.

Preventing Termite Destruction in Your House

It’s no news that termites and white ants cause severe damages to the home. They might attack your house in no time. Hence, termite control has become one of the necessities to prevent the termites from invading your house. Some people control termites by using chemicals in residential areas or working places, where they can survive and breathe.

Important things to know about termites

  • Termites generally lay their eggs in the spring season. They give eggs in the moist soil and then enter the house to provide some nourishment to them. Therefore, it is better to control termites before the beginning of spring season. However, be careful as termites can attack in any season.
  • Two places to look for termites are the kitchen and the bathroom because in these two areas there is maximum use of water. Regularly check the pipes and taps for leakage. If you own a house or farm made of wood, then controlling termite infestation should be your top most priority. It is one of the crucial issues or problems faced by homeowners.

Primarily, start with termite prevention. If you do not have termites, it does not mean that you cannot have them. So, stop them from invading your crops or properties. To prevent the termites, you have to make your home an unfavorable hideout for termites. Following are some ways of preventing termites from invading your house:

  1. Trim all dense greenery, bushes, and shrubs away from your property’s foundation.
  2. Never leave firewood around your house; it works as a magnet for attracting termites. If you have to keep firewood outside your home during the winter season, then keep it at some height off the ground.
  3. Remove all loose woods, tree stumps and lumber from the boundary of your home.
  4. Keep downspouts and gutters free of accumulated debris and leaves. As termites cannot survive on wood only, keeping these areas clean will prevent termites from invading your house. Obstructions and clogs attract termites.
  5. Seal all holes and any cracks in the foundation of your home. Termite prevention is possible only if you keep your house ventilated, particularly the attics of the house. Your rooms should be spacious enough to have the right circulation of air, as moisture attracts termites. Never allow water to be stored anywhere around your house as it may lead to severe house damage.

It is always better to opt for termite prevention before the construction of your property. If you plan to construct a house entirely from wood, then ensure to use treated wood. Borate is one of the most common treated woods that prevent the termite from invading them as their food. Do not allow the wood to have any contact with the earth because this will give easy access to the termites.

How to Aerate Your Lawn

There’s more to lawn care than just cutting, watering, and fertilizing your grass. Even if you do these things correctly, your lawn will still build up compacted soil and lawn thatch (the un-decomposed stems and roots that tend to accumulate near the top of the soil). One of the best ways to address these issues is by aerating your lawn. If you’ve come here because your grass isn’t growing as fully as it could be, you’re in the right place. Whether this is your first time aerating or if you want to brush up on the proper technique, read on to learn how, when, and why to aerate your lawn.

What is aerating?

To grow healthily, the roots of your grass need to reach deep into the soil. When too much thatch builds up or your soil becomes too compacted, grass has a hard time taking root. Furthermore it becomes difficult to plant new seed or to get nutrients down to the roots of your grass. One do-it-yourself solution to this problem is aeration. Motorized aeration machines plug clumps of compacted soil and pull them out of your yard, allowing water, seed, and fertilizer to enter the soil to grow new, healthy grass.

When should you aerate your lawn?

The best time for aeration is during or just before peak grass-growing season in the spring. Warm weather and a lot of rain and sunshine all will help your newly aerated lawn grow quickly.

Steps of aeration

Here are the steps you should take for aerating your lawn:

  1. The day before aeration rake your yard and clean up anything that might be in your grass (pet toys, garden hoses, etc.)
  2. Water your yard heavily to make the soil moist. If you own an aerator, you can wait until the day after heavy rainfall. If you’re renting one, just make sure the soil is wet enough to soften and plug
  3. Use the aerator on your entire lawn, avoiding things like irrigation systems. Then make a second pass with the aerator
  4. You can leave the excavated plugs on your lawn to dry up and decompose
  5. Once aerated, spread compost or peat moss over the yard to prevent further soil compaction

Aeration tips

There are many myths about lawn aeration. Some people argue that you don’t need to plug the soil, but rather just spiking the lawn will suffice. Unfortunately, spiking the lawn won’t do much to break down thatch and might even further compact your soil (think walking on your lawn with baseball cleats on).

Another myth involving aeration is that leaving grass clippings on your lawn will cause thatch to build up quickly. This is also false. Grass clippings are mostly water and will decompose, adding nitrogen to your soil. This could save you money on having to buy fertilizer often.

Another tip that will help you maximize the benefit of aeration is to avoid cutting your grass too short. Grass cut under two inches could be damaged or die. After you aerate, let your grass grow a few inches before cutting it, allowing your grass roots to take firm hold.