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Winterizing your home

Posted by on Nov 24, 2016 in blog_commentary | 0 comments

winterize

Winter is fast approaching up here in the North Georgia Mountains. Have you winterized your home yet? Did you know that by winterizing your home it will help keep the heat in, the cold out and unnecessary damage from happening! Below you will find some helpful tips to protect your home and stay warm and cozy this winter:

 
Heating system:
•Make sure everything is working properly! If you haven’t done so already turn the heat on to test it. You should hear the furnace kick on and feel the heat blowing out. Keep the heat set at a minimum of 50.
•Replace your air filters if they are dirty.
•Make sure your heating vents are free and clear of dust and debris.
•Check for Carbon Monoxide (Inexpensive tests are available as well as battery operated alarms)

 
Air conditioning:
•Clean the unit by removing all dirt debris.

 
Chimney and fireplace:
•Make sure the chimney is free of all animals including birds and squirrels before lighting a fire.
•Check to make sure the flue is working properly.
•Make sure there is not a draft coming from the chimney. To check this light some paper in the fire place with the flue open. The smoke should rise up, if it doesn’t you could have an obstruction and need to call a professional to clean the chimney.

 
Plumbing:

•Insulate all exposed piping that is in non insulated spaces such as attics, crawlspaces, outside etc. Make sure you insulate them at minimum with foam insulation.
•Insulate your hot water tank with an insulating blanket.
•Turn off all water to exterior water faucets and disconnect the hose.
•If you will be away from your property for a length of time make sure all water is shut off to prevent pipes from freezing, drain the water from the pipes by letting the water run out of your lowest spigot, and consider turning the breaker off on your water heater.

 
Doors and windows:
•Check for drafts around windows and outside doors. If you feel air coming in install weather stripping.

 
Roof and gutters:
•Make sure your shingles are not damaged or missing.
•Be sure your gutters are free and clear of debris. Wet leaves in the winter can add weight to the gutter and cause damage. (See the Complete Home Services blog for more on gutter cleaning)

 
Sprinklers:
•If you have a sprinkler system make sure the water supply is turned off and air is blown through the system to prevent freezing.

 

 

C&H Construction is a licensed general contractor and Custom Home builder located in Blairsville, Union County Georgia serving Towns County Georgia, Fannin County Georgia, Gilmer County Georgia and the North Georgia Mountains.

Cold weather home maintenance

Posted by on Nov 14, 2016 in blog_commentary | 0 comments

 

cold

The weather is getting cold up in the North Georgia Mountains and now is the perfect time to prepare your house for the winter ahead. Did you know that by doing a little cold weather home maintenance you could prevent costly repairs and even lower your heating bill? Below are some helpful tips to get you started:

 

•Seal any cracks or holes on the outside of your house.
•Replace worn out weatherstripping around your windows or doors.
•Make sure your attic is insulated. You should have at least 12″-16″ of insulation.
•Replace windows with double pane glass or cover single pane windows with plastic window insulation kits.
•Have your heating system inspected and serviced by a HVAC professional in order to make sure your furnace and blower are working properly.
•If your heating system is over 12 years old consider replacing it with a new and more energy efficient system.
•Replace your furnace filter regularly (every 1-3 months) with a quality filter. This improves indoor air quality and allows your heater to run more efficiently.

 

 
C&H Construction is a licensed general contractor and Custom Home builder located in Blairsville, Union County Georgia serving Towns County Georgia, Fannin County Georgia, Gilmer County Georgia and the North Georgia Mountains

Fireplaces

Posted by on Oct 18, 2016 in blog_commentary | 0 comments

fireplaces

 

Now that the weather is getting a bit chilly you might want to curl up and light a fire in the fireplace. How do you know which type is right for you though? Choosing the right fireplace can be a challenge. Below we will discuss each type of fireplace to help you take the guess work out of choosing one.

 

Wood-burning

A wood-burning fireplace is the oldest and most traditional fireplace option there is. You can’t match the look, smell and sound of a wood burning fire. However, wood-burning fireplaces do require either storing logs or going to the store periodically for a supply. This type of fireplace also has the most upkeep. It requires maintenance of the chimney as well as cleaning ash out of the fireplace.

When wood is burning in the fireplace it spits out burning embers, so screens are also needed to ensure safe use. Finally, wood-burning fireplaces can lose more heat up the chimney than they create. This can be altered though with elements added to the fireplace to reduce air flow up the flue.

If the fireplace has a gas starter, you can easily convert it from wood to gas by adding gas logs as well.

 

Gas

Gas fireplaces burn natural gas instead of wood. Vented gas fireplaces are constructed much like traditional wood-burning fireplaces, with a firebox that is vented through the chimney. These vented fireplaces allow for the largest variety of burning elements, which can range from ceramic logs that have the appearance of real burning logs and embers to more of a modern look with flames that come up through glass beads.

There are two other types of gas fireplaces as well, direct vent fireplaces and ventless fireplaces. Direct vent fireplaces don’t require chimneys and the flame is kept behind glass. Direct vent fireplaces also emit a large amount of heat and don’t lose warm air up the flue.

Ventless fireplaces have no venting, which means they can be placed against internal walls as long as gas can be brought to the location. Plus all the heat from ventless fireplaces remain inside the home.

 

Electric

Electric fireplaces are easy to incorporate into any space. All you have to do is follow the instructions regarding placement and plug one into an outlet. This type of fireplace is all about function. Electric fireplaces come in a range of designs to fit any decor and are also a great way to add ambience in your home without breaking the bank.

 

Ethanol

Ethanol fireplaces are one of the newest additions to fireplace technology today!

The flame requires no venting, which means that ethanol fireplaces can be used almost anywhere in the house. These fireplaces do require refilling and when used properly they are safe, but ethanol is very flammable so you must be careful refilling this type of fireplace.

 

 

Feel free to contact C&H construction to discuss the best option for you.
C&H Construction is a licensed general contractor and Custom Home builder located in Blairsville, Union County Georgia serving Towns County Georgia, Fannin County Georgia, Gilmer County Georgia and the North Georgia Mountains

Posted by on Oct 18, 2016 in blog_commentary | 0 comments

bats

How to keep bats from roosting on your home.

 

 
Your home can be a prime spot for bats to hibernate as it’s a safe and warm place. Hibernation time is from November till the mid of March. During this time you can find colonies of bats. There are a few things you can do now to keep them away from your home for the winter:
•Get rid of standing water. If you have an area that always has water sitting in it such as bird baths, rain catchers, or clogged gutters you are attracting bats with a consistent source of water. Be sure to drain the bird baths and rain catchers and keep your gutters clean and free of leaves and debris.
•Keep your home pest free. The main food source for bats are insects. Be sure to resolve any insect issues around your home to reduce the chances of bats coming near it.
•Place fake owls near your home. Owls are a predator for bats. When you place the fake owls near by the bats will take notice and stay away.

 

 
Do you already have bats on your porch or in your home? If so you can follow these tips to get rid of them:
•Inspect all entry and exit areas for the bats on the porch or home. Also note the primary areas of entry and exit.
•Seal all the entries except the primary ones.
•Install screen mesh around the primary holes and ensure that the sides and the top of the mesh are fitted tightly, but bottom side is left free, so that the bats can go out but cannot fly back in.
•Wait for a week or two and ensure that all the bats are out.
•Seal the primary areas of entry.

 

 

Do you have damage to your home from bats? If so we can help. Give us a call today to schedule a free estimate.

C&H Construction is a licensed general contractor and Custom Home builder located in Blairsville, Union County Georgia serving Towns County Georgia, Fannin County Georgia, Gilmer County Georgia and the North Georgia Mountains

Don’t forget to repair your roof and gutters

Posted by on Oct 4, 2016 in blog_commentary | 0 comments

roof-repair

Fall has arrived in the North Georgia mountains! This means the leaves will begin piling up in your yard, on your roof and in your gutters! Roof and gutter problems can cause major damage to your home if left untreated! Some of these problems are:

  • Water can flow onto wood surfaces which will eventually lead to rot and can also cause puddling around the foundation which can lead to damp or leaky basements. 
  • Water can back up into the walls or be rerouted and come in through the roof which can lead to very expensive repair costs. 
  • If you have major leek in the roof the excess weight from leaves and debris can actually cause the roof to cave in. 

If you need your roof repaired don’t wait! Fix it immediately to avoid unnecessary and expensive repair costs. 

C&H Construction is a licensed general contractor and Custom Home builder located in Blairsville, Union County Georgia serving Towns County Georgia, Fannin County Georgia, Gilmer County Georgia and the North Georgia Mountains

Extra Extra Read All About It!!!!

Posted by on Oct 4, 2016 in blog_commentary | 0 comments

 
C&H Construction will be at the North GA Western Carolina Home and Garden Show in Hiawassee! We would love for you to come out and see us.

 
North Georgia Western Carolina Home and Garden Show

983 Main St., Suite 204

P.O. Box 667

Andrews, NC 28901

 
Hours:

October 15 & 16, 2016

Saturday: 10am – 5pm

Sunday: Noon – 5pm

 
– See more at: http://members.visitblairsvillega.com/list/member/northeast-georgia-western-north-carolina-home-garden-show-andrews-1617#sthash.EqxGizGt.dpuf

 

 

C&H Construction is a licensed general contractor and Custom Home builder located in Blairsville, Union County Georgia serving Towns County Georgia, Fannin County Georgia, Gilmer County Georgia and the North Georgia Mountains

Bathtub material

Posted by on Oct 1, 2016 in blog_commentary | 0 comments

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Last week we discussed some of the different types of bathtubs. Once you have decided which type of bathtub you might like in your home it’s time to choose a material. It’s important to note though that not all types of bathtubs come in every material. Below we will discuss some of the different materials and which types of bathtubs are suited for that type:

 
Cast Iron
Cast iron is a extremely long lasting and durable material and it is usually covered with a porcelain coating making it able to last for decades. Cast iron is usually found on alcove or free standing tubs. Their finish is very strong and easily cleaned. However, the porcelain that does eventually wear away or chip will reveal the cast iron which can rust. Cast iron tubs are also extremely heavy and a need good support system.

 
Enamel On Steel
Enamel on steel bathtubs or porcelain on steel have a very similar look to that of cast iron except they are much lighter. Just like cast iron their surface is easily cleaned and maintained and are also susceptible to rusting if the porcelain chips or gets scratched exposing the steel underneath. However, their lighter weight means that they’re easier to install into a remodeled bathroom and it doesn’t require as much support as the cast iron tub.

 
Acrylic
Acrylic is a high gloss material very similar to the look on cast iron and steel tubs, but it’s a much lighter weight than both cast iron and steel. It can be scratched more easily but these scratches can also be repaired easier than a porcelain enamel surface. Because acrylic is an easily formed material it is often found on whirlpool bathtubs.

 
Fiberglass

Fiberglass reinforced plastic is covered in something called gelcoat. The gelcoat provides a smooth and glass like surface for the tub and can be easily cleaned as well. It is very similar to acrylic but it’s usually not as durable. You can usually find some whirlpool bathtubs made from this material because it can be shaped very easily.

 
Composite
Composite tubs are made with engineered composite materials and the outside surface is finished in enamel. The purpose of composite tubs is to try to achieve the benefits of cast iron, such as heat retention and a strong surface finish without the weight associated with cast iron tubs. Some people report a slight bend and/or creaking with composite tubs but sometimes this can be related to the technique used to install it.

 
Cultured Marble
Cultured marble is actually a type of engineered stone where crushed marble is combined with resin to produce a solid product. You could say it’s very similar to quartz countertops (see our article on counter top material). Once made cultured marble is usually covered with a clear gelcoat in order to provide a durable yet easy to clean and stain resistant surface. However, cultured marble is a brittle material and it isn’t very forgiving of overly tightened faucet and/or water spout fixtures that can crack the surface. While any surface scratches can usually be buffed out cracks are usually unrepairable.

 
Wood
Wood is definitely a different style choice and can look extremely beautiful but it does comes with some issues. Wood tubs need a very good surface sealer in order to prevent deterioration and bathtubs that are constructed out of several pieces of wood must have those seams tightly joined and sealed so it doesn’t leak. Long term durability as well as maintaining a leak proof tub are things you’ll need to consider before deciding to go with wood.

 
Be sure to check back next week for the last part on bathtubs as we will be discussing bathtub installation techniques.

 

 
Are you looking to install a new bathtub or replace an existing one? If so we can help. Give us a call today.

 
C&H Construction is a licensed general contractor and Custom Home builder located in Blairsville, Union County Georgia serving Towns County Georgia, Fannin County Georgia, Gilmer County Georgia and the North Georgia Mountains

Types of bathtubs

Posted by on Sep 20, 2016 in blog_commentary | 0 comments

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Are you shopping for a new bathtub? Did you know that there are several different types of tubs, each one with a different purpose? Below we will talk a little bit about each type so you can decide which one is best for your home:

 
General purpose tub
While this is not a technical name a “general purpose” tub is the one that most of us probably know quite well. It serves multiple purposes from bathing, to washing the dog, and even maybe as a vessel to hand wash clothes. It typically is a shower/tub combo attached to the walls. There is nothing fancy about this tub, but it definitely gets the job done.

 
Soaking tub
A soaking tub is usually much deeper than just the standard general purpose bathtub. The depth of this tub allows you to totally immerse yourself into the water. Soaking tubs can come in all different styles and shapes. Vintage free standing tubs for example typically classify as a soaking tub since they usually have taller sides and are able to hold more water than just a general purpose tub.

 
Whirlpool tub
A whirlpool tub offers a spa like experience by using jets to shoot water and air bubbles into the bathtub in order to give you the feeling of a massage.
Whirlpool tubs are the most complex of all the tubs because they have pumps, filters, hoses and other equipment needed to circulate the water. This also means they usually need to be repaired from time to time when the system fails.

 
Walk-In tub
A walk-in tub is one that has a door that allows you to just walk into the tub instead of having to lift your leg over the edge. These tub are extremely useful for the elderly and people that have limited mobility. The door to this tub has a seal on it that will allow the tub to hold the water when it’s filled so it can be used for more then just for showering.

 

 

Be sure to check back next week as we will be discussing bathtub materials.
Are you looking to install a new bathtub? If so give us a call.

 
C&H Construction is a licensed general contractor and Custom Home builder located in Blairsville, Union County Georgia serving Towns County Georgia, Fannin County Georgia, Gilmer County Georgia and the North Georgia Mountains

The importance of keeping your roof and gutters free of debris

Posted by on Sep 14, 2016 in blog_commentary | 0 comments

roof
Fall is arriving soon up here in the North Georgia mountains and while leaves and debris are piling up in your yard they are also piling up in your gutters and on your roof! Your roof is one of those things that people don’t really worry about cleaning that often, but did you know that clogged gutters and debris on your roof can cause major problems for your home if left untreated! Leaves and debris can cause water to overflow onto wood services which will eventually lead to rot and can even cause puddling around the foundation which can lead to damp or leaky basements. Water can also back up into the walls or be rerouted and come in through the roof which can lead to very expensive repair costs. Standing water in your gutters can also become a breeding ground for mosquitoes and in the winter time when temperatures drop water can freeze into heavy blocks of ice which can cause your gutters to pull away from your home. The money required to clean your roof and gutters is minimal compared to the money required to repair the damage that debris can cause. So when leaves and other debris start piling up make sure to remove them as soon as possible to keep your home looking beautiful and avoid unnecessary repair costs.

 
Do you have damage from debris or leaves left on your roof? If the answer is yes we can help. Give us a call today to schedule  your free quote.

 

C&H Construction is a licensed general contractor and Custom Home builder located in Blairsville, Union County Georgia serving Towns County Georgia, Fannin County Georgia, Gilmer County Georgia and the North Georgia Mountains.

 

How to keep mold from building up in your home

Posted by on Aug 23, 2016 in blog_commentary | 0 comments

mold

The two main things that mold needs in order to grow are organic materials and moisture. In homes there are both!  The organic materials that mold lives on are wood, drywall and various other building materials. While you can’t get rid of the material, the moisture on the other hand can be controlled! Most types molds need 24-48 hours of moisture to begin to grow. Therefore if a suitable material in your home is wet for more than 24 hours then you begin to run the risk of mold starting to grow. Below you will find some helpful tips to prevent mold from growing in your home.

 
Prevent Water Leaks

There are a couple of main things that usually cause moisture problems in your home. One of them is water leaks! These include things such as cracks in your foundation where water can enter your home, leaking roofs, leaking walls, leaking pipes, leaking faucets and a leaking shower. If you become aware of any leaks in your home you should fix them immediately. You might even need to inspect your home and foundation to find any water leaks you didn’t know about.

 
Prevent Condensation

Condensation is another frequent cause of moisture. Condensation will form on cold surfaces when water vapor in the air cools and becomes liquid. You will often see condensation on metal pipes, concrete walls, water tanks, windows, etc.

One way to reduce the condensation in your home is to keep the temperature warmer in rooms where it builds up. One example of how you can do this is by installing proper insulation.  You can also insulate the surfaces themselves such as putting coverings over metal pipes.

 

Reduce Humidity
Did you know that many species of mold can start to grow from humidity alone? In fact the humidity only needs to be higher than 55% before some molds can begin to grow. It is especially important to properly ventilate the rooms where steam and moisture build up, such as the kitchen and bathroom. Exhaust fans help to reduce the humidity when doing things like cooking or washing dishes. Air conditioners and dehumidifiers can also reduce household humidity.

 

 

 

C&H Construction is a licensed general contractor and Custom Home builder located in Blairsville, Union County Georgia serving Towns County Georgia, Fannin County Georgia, Gilmer County Georgia and the North Georgia Mountains.