Why Should You Landscape Your Lawn?

Having your lawn landscaped by one of your local landscape companies will give you a beautiful yard that you’ll be able to enjoy.  There are many other great benefits to having your yard landscaped.  Here are some other benefits to landscaping your lawn.

Property Value      

One thing that gives your home the most curb appeal is your landscaping.  This will also give you an increased property value and make your home look more attractive.  While it will improve the aesthetic value of the home, it can improve the look of your home when compared to other similar homes in your neighborhood.  Know that a professional landscape company will be able to up the value of your home as soon as they are finished making your yard a beautiful area that can be enjoyed.

Energy Costs      

It is imperative to save energy wherever possible in order to save money, and help to conserve the earth’s resources.  Landscaping can help to control the temperature inside a home by helping to control wind and other elements around your home.  Trees, shrubbery and vines will reduce the energy needed to heat or cool a home by shading, wind breaking and helping to cool the ground around the home.  According to the North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service, heating bills can be reduced by up to 15% and cooling bills can be reduced by up to 50%.

Environmental Impact     

Plants that are native to your environment will help benefit the natural habitats for animals living in your local area.  These plants will also require less upkeep, and will thrive and flourish, while more exotic plants will require more maintenance and water, costing you more.  Other ways that landscaping can impact the environment is that all plants reduce pollution in the air by releasing oxygen and absorbing carbon dioxide.

Encourages Wildlife      

Any flowers, plants, bushes and trees in your yard will attract birds and insects that are natives to your areas.  This will allow them to be able to make natural habitats, store food and to be sheltered from predators.  Many natural functions such as the production of honey by bees could be taking place from the landscaping that you have on your property.

Functionality        

Landscaping will help you to make use of your land.  If you choose to build structures to be included alongside your landscaping, you will be making your property useful.  Patio structures, fire pits, vegetable gardens and even flower beds will improve your land and help it to become functional in the process.      

Having your yard or property landscaped by a local landscape company like B & B Hoffman Sod Farms will allow you to be able to make more of your land, and help out your environment in the process.

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Solar Vs. Wind Power: Which Is The Better Renewable Energy?

Homeowners can create their own clean energy by installing solar panels or wind turbines. But which is the better option? Both solar and wind power offer a clean, affordable and infinitely effective source of renewable energy that produces no emissions. However, these two energy options have some distinct differences. Learn more about solar and wind power and how they compare.

Solar Energy

Depending on the size of the solar system you choose to install, you can save a substantial amount of money on your electric bill. According to NerdWallet Inc., the estimated yearly savings for a 3 kilowatt (kW) residential solar panel system is $600. The biggest advantage of solar energy is that it’s renewable and sustaining, meaning that it will never run out.

Once solar panels have been installed, they require very little maintenance to maintain. There is no noise from photovoltaic panels as they silently draw in sunlight to transform into useable energy. Solar energy can also be produced on or off the grid. When on the grid, a house remains connected to the state electricity grid. When off the grid, there is no connection to the electricity grid and the home relies solely on solar power for energy.

Other key benefits of solar power include:

  • Increasing your home’s value
  • Saving money on your utility bills
  • Decreasing your carbon footprint
  • Locking-in energy costs indefinitely

Wind Energy

Wind energy is one of the fastest growing forms of renewable energy in the world. This clean fuel source does not pollute the air and does not produce emissions that contribute to greenhouse gasses and acid rain. Wind power is also one of the most affordable forms of renewable energy, costing as low as 2.5 cents per kilowatt-hour, according to The Energy Collective.

Wind turbines are available in a wide range of sizes, which means they can be effectively used by both residential homes and businesses. Wind power can be especially useful in remote areas that are not connected to electricity power grids. Although these turbines can be tall and take up a small plot of land, the land below the turbine can still be used for a variety of purposes, such as farming.

Other key benefits of wind power include:

  • Wind is free and available everywhere
  • Turbines do not emit greenhouse gasses
  • Wind turbines do not consume water
  • Wind energy is clean and plentiful

Both solar energy and wind energy have excellent advantages that make them popular choices for homes and businesses. For more information, contact your local renewable energy company.

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How To Prevent Roaches From Making Their Way Into Your Living Space

If there is one common household pest that can make your skin crawl, it is roaches. Unfortunately, roaches are some of the most resilient insects and are very capable of traveling from home to home and finding a way in. If you live in an area that is prone to roach infestations, it is important to prevent them from entering the home altogether. Yet, this is not always easy to accomplish. Here are a few simple tricks to help you out.

Seal Your Home from the Exterior Completely

Roaches can squeeze through even the smallest cracks and crevices. If you have a roach problem in your neighborhood, these bugs can and will try their best to get inside your residence. It is important to do all that you can to prevent even the slightest openings that would provide access to you home. Check around windows and doors, in crawlspaces, and even around the roof for possible entry points and seal them with silicone caulking or other airtight material.

Be Careful What You Bring Indoors

One female cockroach can produce as many as 400 offspring in her lifetime. Therefore, all it would take is one bug brought into your home to cause a major infestation. It is actually easier to carry in cockroaches from an outside source than what most people think. These bugs are incredibly good at hiding until they get into a desired location. Electronics and appliances are infamous housing grounds for these bugs, and it is not uncommon for people to buy a used appliance and soon after discover that it was full of roaches. Be sure you thoroughly investigate anything that comes into your house that you suspect came from a place with roaches.

Use Perimeter Bug Treatment to Ward Off Roaches

If you are truly concerned that bugs will travel to your home, it is a good idea to talk to a professional pest control agent about preventative treatment methods that can be taken, such as perimeter spray treatment. During this type of treatment, the entire perimeter of your home will be treated with a spray that will keep the bugs from trying to enter your home.

It is much easier to prevent a cockroach infestation than it is to treat an issue once there is an infestation. Taking measures to keep the bugs out of your home in the first place is the best thing that you can do to keep your home protected from these unwanted house guests.

For more information, contact Mr. Bug Killer Inc. or a similar company.

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How To Save On Your Propane Bill

Winter is right around the corner. This means increased use of your heat, which can lead to increased propane usage. While you want to keep your home warm this winter, you also do not want to pay too much to keep it that way. Here are some tips you can use to keep your energy bill at an amount that you can handle.

Filling The Tank

When your propane delivery company comes to fill your tank, it may be beneficial to hold off on doing a complete fill if the price of propane is higher than usual. Propane prices fluctuate according to the economy and the weather. There are times of the year where the propane cost is lower than other times, such as in the summertime when it is not being used. Have your propane filled during these times and have the company do partial fill ups during the colder months. Keep an eye on propane pricing. If you see a reason for the price to drop, this is when to call for a fill up.

Setting The Temperature

To keep your costs low, set your thermostat a degree or two lower than you normally do. In the wintertime, do not feel pressured to turn it up because it is colder outside. Keep it at a constant rate, lowering when no one will be at home. You can buy a programmable thermostat to help you keep on a schedule if you feel this will be a benefit. Lower the thermostat at night when you are asleep. Simply add an extra blanket to your bed to make up for the lower temperature.

Check For Drafts

You will want to make sure that there are no drafts that are letting your heat seep outdoors unnecessarily. Light a candle and move it around the perimeter of each door and window to see if it flickers. Where there is flickering, there is air. Install weather-stripping to doors and windows that are suspect. You can add a layer of caulk around your doorways and use expandable foam in areas where the gap is large.

Cover Up

One way to save on your energy bill is to make sure your windows have window coverings. Use thermal lined drapes and curtains to cover your windows. These act as a layer of insulation and will block the heat from escaping. Use a door draft blocker to stick at the bottom of your doorway to help keep drafts from coming inside.

For more information about propane gas, contact Mills Fuel Service Inc. or a similar company.

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Paint Disposal Tips

You finally finished painting. There’s only a small amount of paint left, so there’s no need in holding on to it. You decide to toss it in the trash on garbage pickup day. Paint is household hazardous waste and disposing of it in this way is actually quite dangerous. Oil based paints contain ketones and methanol, which are highly flammable. Water based paints may not be flammable, but they contain a number of toxic chemicals including formaldehyde and ammonia. Irresponsibly disposing of your paint places your entire community in danger. Here are some tips to help you get rid of your paint.

Mix It

If you are using a latex-based paint, you may want to consider reusing it. Latex paints can be mixed together and reused. While this will alter the color of the paint, depending on the hue you might be able to use it as a base coat.

If not, you might have another project around your home where you can reuse the paint. Mixing and reusing the paint keeps this hazardous waste out of your trash can and it can also save you a little extra money. Making it better for the environment and your wallet.

Donate It

Consider donating your leftover paint to a deserving organization. If you have enough paint left over to use for a project, these organizations may be able to use it in the home of someone less fortunate. Habitat for Humanity is just one of the organizations that accepts donations.

Depending on how much paint you donate you may be able to get a tax receipt for a charitable donation. More importantly, you will know that not only are you protecting the environment, but you’re also helping others in your community who are in need.

Dispose Properly

If you have no use for the paint and want to get rid of it, you need to contact the facility in your area that handles hazardous waste. These companies generally have certain days of the week or month that they come out and collect household hazardous waste.

Contact a hazardous waste management company like Ohana Environmental Construction Inc for more information. There is also information online that can help you find a waste collection company or drop off site in your local community.

It’s each person’s responsibility to preserve the earth. Even something as minor as reusing your paint or disposing of it properly makes a big difference, so do your part.

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2 Reasons To Hire A Pest Control Service To Eliminate Your Spider Problem

Spiders are a very common type of pest control issue, especially when you consider how many people are actually terrified of spiders. Two reasons to utilize a pest control service to eliminate spiders are to permanently resolve the issue and to have more options for eliminating the infestation.

Permanently Resolve The Issue

The main reason to hire an exterminator to deal with a spider infestation is in order to make sure that the infestation is dealt with once and for all. When using store-bought pest control solutions, there is a very good chance that you will only be killing off the visible portions of the infestation. The problem with this is that you may be leaving the nests intact, which means that the spiders will likely begin spreading throughout your house again very quickly.

Another issue with attempting to deal with the spiders with store-bought solutions is that the store-bought solutions will often only affect certain spider species. If you incorrectly identify the spider species that is in your home, then you could end up spending money on store-bought poisons and chemicals that will do nothing.

However, a pest control service will be able to correctly identify the spider species quickly, and utilize the most appropriate chemicals to eliminate the pests. In addition, the exterminator will also track down the nests and destroy them. The exterminator will also begin spraying chemicals that will keep the spiders from re-entering the home and building new nests.

More Options

Another reason to utilize a pest control service to deal with a spider infestation is because the service will provide you with multiple ways to deal with an infestation. For example, if you do not want to have all of the spiders, or any other kind of pest, killed, then a pest control service can utilize non-lethal means of removing the infestation.

Another example would be if you were uncomfortable with spraying chemicals and poisons all over your home and property. This is especially understandable if you have kids or pets that you are worried about getting sick from those poisons or chemicals. In that situation, the exterminators will have access to all-natural or pet- and child-safe compounds and solutions that can eliminate the infestation without putting any of your family members in danger.

Speak to a local pest control service, like Environmental Services Pest Control, in order to deal with a spider infestation. The pest control service can provide you with many options to not only eliminate the infestation, but to do so in a way that permanently resolves the issue.

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