History Of Memorial Day

Good Morning. Yes it has been awhile since our last blog.  I have noticed some discrepancies about today’s holiday. And well since I’m a Veteran I wanted to clarify a bit.  So lets begin.

Memorial Day is a day of reflection for the ones who gave the ultimate sacrifice. In every war and conflict the United States we have lost military members.  Today, yes we have the cookouts and corporate has their sales to entice us.  But lets think about the real meaning.Each year on Memorial Day a national moment of remembrance takes place at 3:00 p.m. local time. Usually taps is played on bases at 9p (2100).

So lets talk about the history of today. By the late 1860s, Americans in various towns and cities had begun holding springtime tributes to these countless fallen soldiers, decorating their graves with flowers and reciting prayers.

It is unclear where exactly this tradition originated; numerous different communities may have independently initiated the memorial gatherings. Nevertheless, in 1966 the federal government declared Waterloo, New York, the official birthplace of Memorial Day.

Waterloo—which first celebrated the day on May 5, 1866—was chosen because it hosted an annual, community-wide event, during which businesses closed and residents decorated the graves of soldiers with flowers and flags.

Decoration Day

On May 5, 1868, General John A. Logan, leader of an organization for Northern Civil War veterans, called for a nationwide day of remembrance later that month. “The 30th of May, 1868, is designated for the purpose of strewing with flowers, or otherwise decorating the graves of comrades who died in defense of their country during the late rebellion, and whose bodies now lie in almost every city, village and hamlet churchyard in the land,” he proclaimed.

The date of Decoration Day, as he called it, was chosen because it wasn’t the anniversary of any particular battle.

Many Northern states held similar commemorative events and reprised the tradition in subsequent years; by 1890 each one had made Decoration Day an official state holiday. Southern states, on the other hand, continued to honor their dead on separate days until after World War I. Remember Southern States where honoring the Confederate Soldiers and Sailors of the Civil War too.

Memorial Day, as Decoration Day gradually came to be known, originally honored only those lost while fighting in the Civil War. But during World War I the United States found itself embroiled in another major conflict, and the holiday evolved to commemorate American military personnel who died in all wars.

For decades, Memorial Day continued to be observed on May 30, the date Logan had selected for the first Decoration Day. But in 1968 Congress passed the Uniform Monday Holiday Act, which established Memorial Day as the last Monday in May in order to create a three-day weekend for federal employees; the change went into effect in 1971. The same law also declared Memorial Day a federal holiday.

So in closing. At 3pm today take that moment of silence before engaging in the cookouts or movies with family and friends. Its a tradition that is long forgotten.

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Attic Insulation

Good Day. Our blog this week is about attic insulation. Since we survived the 10 days of winter here in Florida, I am sure many of us were feeling the chill. Wondering why are we having the heat on every 20 minutes or so. No this blog will address a bit of heat loss but more about the insulation in the attic. So lets begin.

When we have insulation in our attic the normal R-value is normally R-30. When we think of insulation we usually think of the rolled type of the puffy pink insulation. You may see some that have a faced or moisture barrier and some that is not. (it should be faced to add the protection of moisture against the drywall.) Now with the insulation some may have been compromised or is dense. Some of us will add more insulation then needed. Remember the hot air still has to move through the attic and out in the environment.

Adding more insulation is very common. We have added R-19 to existing insulation for a value of R-48. Which is the max we would like to add. Some insulation companies will use cellulose to the attic for a thickness of 6-8 inches. This is good too, however, you do not want to compromise the density of the insulation as it will loose the R-Values.  But there are few different types of insulation products coming out that may suprise you. For example, expanding foam. We have seen the insulation on the rafters/trusses against the sheathing of the roof. This type of insulation is a tricky conversation. Just like any building material some professionals are for  or against this type.  I see it more and more and feel that there are other ways to remove the heat from the attic. But some say this is the new norm. We can talk more about this product in a latter blog.

Now, there is another type of insulation that is not common but have seen occasionally. Denim insulation or also known as natural cotton fiber insulation. This type of insulation is very eco-friendly. However, it does cost more. The R-Values are the same as fiberglass insulation.

So in closing, if you are thinking about adding more insulation to the attic, let us check it out. We will assist you in determining what is best or what is not best. Yes we all want the energy savings but do not want to blow the bank. We perform attic insulation in Zephyrhills, Trinity, New Port Richey and Land O Lakes,  Florida to mention a few areas. Feel free to call us anytime at 352-437-5300 or our website; www.pascoremodel.com

Thank You

Minor Repairs

Well now that we are into Mid January 2018, some of us are looking at Super Bowl or other festivities. Some maybe like this is the time to take care of some small “Minor Maintenance” around the home. Lets face it. Its cold outside and these small jobs need to be attended too. So why not now. Below will be a small list of small ideas of how you can do it yourself or what to look for to get a professional to do it for you. So lets begin.

Every few months of the year its a great idea to take a peek around the home in the areas that we take for granted. For example, ever think about looking behind the dryer to make sure the dryer vent is connected. Every think you can clean the dryer vent out yourself in most cases.  When is the last time you really checked the window frames and caulk. Yeah, maybe some dirt you get on the bottom but the screen holds dust too. What about the tub or shower caulk and grout. That is huge. Grout is the only defense before moisture gets in the behind the walls. The caulk is usually at the base line of a tub and again will stop water from gaining entry under the tile or enclosure.

But here are a few ideas I am sure you do not think about.  The ceiling fans on the upper part. They are a dust magnet. The globes on the ceiling lights, same and also you can see if there maybe any water stains on them. Maybe a small leak has occurred on the upper toilet.  Speaking of toilets, is your commode caulked to the floor. Has it turned colors from white to yellow? Is there a small drip on the tank in the rear. All little things that can add up when they break or certain elements fail. Or what about the GFCI receptacle and AFCI breakers. These will fail without knowledge. Its ok to press the test button.

Now for the last one. My favorite. Who has an access panel to the shower, jet tub or sunk in tub? When is the last time you opened it. In there yes you will see piping and valves. Also underneath you may see the bottom of the shower receptor or tub. They have a gasket. Eventually all gaskets expire. Valves have a packing nut and again they expire. Also the shower head has a threaded connection and eventually the pipe goo will expire on the threaded nipple.

So, I hope that on a cold wintry weekend you may have some ideas of what to look for during your annual maintenance check up and cleaning.  Remember, don’t look at this as if you are going to find something. Do this check list as to familiarize yourself with the home a bit better. You never know what you may find. At the very least you may find the start of an element to fail or you just cleaned a year of dust off the fan.

We hope this blog helps and thanks again for reading. If you have any questions or would like us to come out to check these and many more items, feel free to call us anytime. 352-437-5300. So if you are in the Zephyrhills, Land O Lakes, Trinity or Hudson area let us know if we can help. We will be glad to email you a full check list to help you out. (pascoremodel@gmail.com)

Hurricane Irma Preparedness

This is a continuation from the blog, from Emerald Inspection Service. To read their blog go to:  https://emeraldinspectionservice.blog/  Our blog is about the necessitates and what you may need to do and consider about the storm.  Certain areas in the home will need attention. The perimeter especially. So lets begin.

If you have a generator for back up electric great. If it runs on gas make sure you have the generator outside and a good 30 feet from any window or door and have a plywood with sandbag area around the generator to protect it. Also if you are running extensions cords to the generator. Make sure you have a GFCI device on the extension cord.

Prior to the storm, remove all debris from the roof. Anything and clean the gutters, if you have them. All downspouts need to be clear and if you have extensions make sure the are pointing down hill. If water is overflowing from debris in the gutters and downspouts this will not help matters any.

Your refrigerator is the only thing that will hold temperature for food. After 4 hours and no power, we suggest to dispose of any milk products. Cheese, milk, etc. A lot of us probably have stocked up on beverages. I will personally tell you. Beer and alcohol can wait. We will toast together when the storm is over. As far as ice goes use it for the bare necessitates such as medicine, perishables that can be eaten in 24 hours. If you think of it, use small jugs and freeze before. The water when melted can be used for a variety of stuff and not just drinking.  Your bottled water use only for drinking and hygiene.

For people that have city water this may not apply so much as it does for folks on well water. Remember no electric, no water. Do not use bottle water to flush toilets or mix drinks with.  Get 5 gallon buckets to fill with water or rain water and reuse a gallon jug. Mark the jug halfway. It takes 1 1/2 gallons to flush a toilet for a #2 episode. Do not flush toilet paper or napkins in the toilet. Use a yard bag and keep a tie on it. I recommend for #1 episodes use the outside or a bucket and pour down the toilet. If you have a lot of people you may want to consider getting a 5 gallon bucket and place a yard bag in it. This may not be cozy. But its an emergency toilet. Get a top too.

Windows, we will not tell you how to secure a window with plywood. But, prior to any storm, check the windows. Make sure the caulking is tight. Screens should be secured. If they are loose remove them. Make sure all windows are locked tight and if you have blinds or curtains, close them during the storm. That is your only protection of glass without boarding them up.

When placing sand bags don’t just lay them on top of each other. Stack and step them. For example you may want a single layer, then double layer and triple layer to block the door. This is also a warning sign to let you know when and how the water is rising.

Lastly, any outside grills cover them. Cover the tanks for the propane too. Your lawn equipment you want in the garage and if possible drain the tanks and cover the engine with plastic. (If water gets in the tank you can easily remove it) Motorcycles, I would cover the cylinders if outside and if possible chain down.  And if the pool starts to overflow or its going to be major flooding, drain the pool partially. The pool will capture the water and it can drain. Also it will help with flooding.

If you have any questions please call us 24/7 during any storm. We are here to help our neighbors and we are not greedy when people are in need of this type of help. Thank You. God Bless Florida, and Lets Ride The Storm Out!

Labor Day

We want to take this time to wish everyone a Happy Labor Day Holiday!

And we also wanted to share a tid bit about this holiday and what it means to others.

Labor Day, the first Monday in September, is a creation of the labor movement and is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of American workers. It constitutes a yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country.

Drainage

If you have been following our Facebook page  and tweets we wrote about moisture intrusion and drainage. A lot of leaks are due to poor drainage and or lack of maintenance.  So this weeks blog is about drainage on the home and how to help avoid the terrible effects of moisture intrusion. So lets begin.

With the rain season in Florida a lot of us experience areas on the home that get more rain water then others. Some of this maybe the landscaping and some is deterioration of somewhat on the home. Lets start with the roof. the flashing around vents is an actual maintenance item. Then you have the valleys which leaves and debris can be collected and will contribute to water getting in them. And then you have the gutter system. Having a gutter is great but if its undersized then you shouldn’t have any at all.

Alot of Florida homes don’t have gutters because they think that the rain is too heavy to capture. One foot of 5″ K-Style gutter holds 1.2 gallons of water. One foot of 6″ K-Style gutter holds 2.0 gallons of water. For commercial applications, box gutters, can be made in 7, or 8 inches or even larger custom sizes that hold even more water. So this is something to think about. But you are saying, I have good gutters. Now you may need to extend the downspouts. Something to think about is adding a French Drain to the foundation area so to divert the water away from the foundation. This is a major difference between the homes here and up north. A lot of homes with basements always have a sump pump for this reason.

And lastly our driveways and other areas is something to think about as well. Adding a channel drain is a good idea. And keeping an eye on the mulch and landscaping as you do not want the area to be sloped toward the foundation.

So with this in closing. Check with the local building department about re-capturing rain water. It can actually be reused for watering the lawn to even water for toilets. Thank you and if you have any questions about this or any of our services, feel free to check us out at; www.pascoremodel.com or even better call us at 352-437-5300.

 

 

Being A Contractor

I hope everyone enjoyed their Independence Day Holiday. We enjoyed a few days off and got to catch up with friends and family. While coming back from the holiday we had a few appointments and it amazes me still how some people think they are a contractor. I wanted to share this blog with you. So lets begin.

While doing estimates in the Lutz and Land O Lakes, Florida area a few clients had called previous people for estimates. Some were we can start tomorrow. Some told my clients sure I can take that for you and then show up and the ladder does not reach the window. Come to find out these are just jobbers being recommended on social media. This actually makes me mad. We have companies out there that are completly legit and then the ones who operate sneaky.  Who is going to select a contractor that does not have correct references, license, insurances, and most of all proper tools. If saving a few dollars is one thing but is that jobber or handyman going to be there when stuff fails that they did. NO!  They will address it once, maybe then ignore you, run, hide, change their number or worst leave the state. Now you the consumer are stuck with a messed up job, out of money and hurt. a

The reason for this blog is 2 of our clients almost got scammed. We get it save some money but when you have a small bathroom remodel and the handyman or jobber says we can start tomorrow. I would run. This also concerned our client.

So, to all our followers and future clients make sure you ask the proper questions.

  1.  Do you have pictures and references of your work?
  2. How long in the trades?
  3. What is your schedule like?
  4. Do you have insurance and license and can you provide a copy?                            (this stops the handyman rip offs!)
  5. And lastly, what type of warranty do you provide?                                                          (by law 1 year. PHRR we provide 2 years)

So in closing do not get hoods-winked by people that think they are a contractor. Instead go with one that can properly answer the 5 basic questions to any client.

Remember, at Pasco Home Remodeling & Repair, we provide all types of home remodeling, repair, and renovation in the Zephyrhills, Holiday, Dade City and Wesley Chapel Florida areas all the time. For more info, contact us at 352-322-2700 or http://www.pascoremodel.com

Thank You.

Drain Odors

First I want to say yes its been awhile since our last blog. The past few months have been crazy with work, but that’s good. So I promise we will be blogging again as we have before. This weeks blog is about drain odors.  Now you maybe thinking what? So with out further ado lets begin.

Ever walk into a home after coming back from vacation and smell like bad egg smell or musty odor. Ok, now what about if you just getting home from work and smell the same. Now lets add one more scenario to the equation. What about little flies in the drain. So below are going to be some tips and also what maybe causing it. This will apply either on septic or sewer type drains. The only difference is when placing cleaning agents you have to use a septic type cleaner.

Whether you leave for a week or so or you go to work and you come home and smell that drain smell we are all talking about its probably being caused by a few things. If you come home from work and been smelling it by chance you have food in the drain or downstream and partial blockage. This happens and really no alarm. Also this is a sign of what could be a back-up in the drain soon to happen. {Yes, just like our bodies our homes gives us symptoms too} So an easy fix is to get some hot water and citrus type cleaner. If you have a garbage disposal these things always get food under the turntable and will cause the smell too. So run for a good 10 minutes in each drain hot water with the cleaner. If you are on septic an approved type of drain sanitizer as well.

To explain a bit more what happens is that the drain walls collect food particles and stick to the sidewalls of the pipe. So this will produce that smell. Our piping just does that and it needs to be cleaned every so often. Now if you are getting flies, this usually comes from the septic system. Its good to place a drain cleaner approved for septic tanks. Also there maybe small food particles in the trap. Every 6 months its a good idea to remove them and clean them as well. (talking from experience)

Now as far as the smell from vacation cause the house being shut up for a week. Prior to leaving its a good idea to run hot water with a cleaner down the drain for 10 minutes. Then after the last use, some type of citrus type cleaner will help reduce the smell. The cleaner will be in the traps where the actual smell comes from. Then upon returning just flush the drains for a few minutes and poof no more smell.

I hope this little tip helps. And from #PascoRemodel we would like to wish everyone a Happy and Safe 4th of July Holiday. Thank you all again for your support.

 

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Contract Planning

Ever wonder about the planning of what goes behind the construction project? Ever wonder why it takes so long at times to get special order items? Well this weeks blog hopefully will shed some light on these questions. So lets begin.

Lets say you want to do them small jobs before you have guests coming into town. Or you like to remodel that bathroom finally. So you have decided to call the local contractor but he is busy. Now you are like ugh. So from there you use a search engine and now you see hundreds of contractors and more search websites for contractors. Where to begin.

Look at the contractor’s websites and reviews. Some people will use Facebook. Some will use the Local Chamber of Commerce, or some will go just pick 3 that are local to them. So you call and let the contractor know the type of work you want done. Hopefully the 3 contractors you called will show up for the estimate. And you start by explaining to them the project at hand. For small jobs they could be a few hours to a couple of days. For the bathroom remodel a bit more. Either way you should get an estimate in about 3-4 days. Some take longer if there is special orders involved or multiple trades. But normally, no more then about 10 days.  Keep in mind you may not be the only client the contractor has proposals for.

So for the small jobs the contractor will prioritize of how they will do the work. If there are parts need to me ordered that will affect the start date. If there is outside work as well, weather needs to be considered. Then for the small jobs the work is started once the contractor has the materials. Sometimes the materials are delayed because the manufacture or supplier is out of stock. When this happens the process just took longer. Now the contractor is at will of the supplier, especially if it is a special order. So once the materials have arrived then the contractor will schedule with their client to perform the work.

But lets take the bathroom remodel. Sounds simple but you normally have 2 or 3 trades involved. If you are redoing a shower our client’s select and purchase the tile. And usually fixtures. Now the tile may take 14 days to get to the supplier. (oh boy) Then we have the plumber. The plumber needs to be notified about what they will be doing and want plenty of time. Again about 14 days. Then lets say the lighting needs to be changed, added or moved. The electrician comes to the project and again they probally like 14 day notice as well. So just from here the project may not start atleast 14 days out. But what if. Seriously the what if factor.

Now lets tell you how Pasco Home Remodeling & Repair will perform these tasks. The initial in home estimate is usually scheduled within 3 days from the initial call. Tad longer if near the weekend. Secondly, for small jobs our planning is simple. If there is materials that need special orders once we receive them a start date is then scheduled. This way we are only at your home once. The worst thing anybody wants is to have the contractor keep coming back. Also this will save you money and time too.

Now lets take the Bathroom Remodel. Normally, the clients want an estimate to see if its in their budget. Yes some contractors will be high and some low. Some may not do the job if it is under a certain amount do to their overhead.  So here is what we do that is tad different. We will figure the contract with the needed materials and trades. We work close with outher speciality trades as we have an understanding what their pricing is. (too a point) This will help the process. Once the estimate is approved from the client. We state. Get all the materials you are providing on site and then call us. Hey, this is your project. So pick the projects you are comfortable with, and not just the economical type. If its gonna take an extra week or so then so be it. Once you have all the materials on-site the contractor should make another visit to make sure all the materials will be proper for the job. (worst thing to happen is to be installing tile and not have another box because there is one box broken.)

Once this process is completed, then the contractor should schedule the other trades and begin the work. Now keep in mind unless the contractor has his own employees nothing is perfect. But normally the schedule should go from start to finish.  So as you can see from the day you start the I want to get stuff fixed around my home to completion it could take about 5 weeks of scheduling. But the wait will be worth the perfection of your new project.

For more information about these projects or others visit us at www.pascoremodel.com or call 352-437-5300. We glady perform projects in Land O Lakes, Holiday, Zephyrhills, and Lutz Florida all the time. We will be more then glad to visit your home anywhere to discuss the project you like to have done.

Thank You and Happy Easter to our followers!

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