Build Your Own Backyard Fireplace

Posted on 14 May 2018 (0)

Before building your fire pit, you have to gather some essential supplies like: bricks, gravel, a stake, a tape measure, a string or tine, a trowel and a large shovel, a level, and a tamp.

Also, you’ll have to consult your local fire code to know if fire pits aren’t prohibited in your city, and if they aren’t – what the distance of the fire pit should be from a structure.

After carrying these out, then you are good to go!

Step 1: Create a circle

Choose an area in your yard for the fire pit and place a stake in the ground where the pit will be centered. Tie an end of the twine or string to the stake and measure up how wide you’ll like the circle to be. Normally, the diameter of a fire pit is about 4 to 5ft. Cut the twine then tie its other end to the trowel’s handle. Create a line in the grass with the sharp end of the twine.

Step 2: Shovel out the grass

Dig out the grass in the circle with a large shovel. For safety reasons, the hole has to be about 6 to 12 in. deep. You want to make sure there are no utility lines under your chosen spot before you begin to dig.

Step 3: Tamp down the soil

A tamp can be used for this, you can also use the bottom of the shovel.

Step 4: Level the circle

Ensure the tamped surface is level and bricks can be laid.

 

Step 5: Add gravel

Pour a really thick layer of gravel in the pit and spread it around evenly.

Step 6: Arrange the bricks

After spreading the gravel in the fire pit, arrange the bricks circularly and stack up until the pit wall is about 12 in. tall or more.

For safety purposes, you can add an inner layer of firebricks. Although you won’t have to use mortar if bricks weigh enough to make a solid stack, an outdoor mortar with fire-resistant can be used between the bricks for more stability.

Step 7: Sit back and enjoy your fireplace!

Gather chairs around, some firewood, call up some friends and you can start utilizing your new fireplace.

 

How To Repair Damaged Stucco

Posted on 28 April 2018 (0)

When talking about home sidings, stucco is one of the most durable and is dominate throughout the south and southwest. Stucco gained its popularity due to its beautiful outlook, durability, and being cheaper than similar home sidings (research says a square foot of stucco costs about $5 less than a similar home siding).

Stucco is so durable that it can last up to hundred years. However, to ensure this, it has to be effectively managed from time to time. We recommend you go with a local painting company (we recommend http://BGBpainting.com) that knows how to repair stucco and match your existing color scheme to make your home look like new.

If you want to DIY, follow these steps:

Water is the main cause of damage to stucco as once it is able to get under the surface of the stucco; it breaches the barrier thus leading to gradual deterioration of the stucco and wall in extension. The following are the steps to take when attempting to repair your stucco.

  • Mix stucco.

It is important to know that stucco tends to change color over the years. This means that the new batch you got might not quite have the same color as that which you are trying to repair. You can remedy this by painting the new batch after you might have installed it to make it blend or you could purchase and add color pigments which you will add to your mix till you get your desired color.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • Apply the first coat

Before application, make use of a chisel and hammer to get rid of any loose damaged stucco pieces. Apply your stucco mix to the damaged area using a trowel. What you have done is apply the first layer which is known as the ‘scratch coat’

  • Add grooves

After step 2 above, to assist the application of further coats, make use of a trowel to scrape off grooves into the mix.

  • Prepare for the brown coat

The next layer to be applied is known as the brown coat (whatever the color might be). In preparation for this, you are meant to apply water onto the scratch coat that you have left to dry for at least 24 hours.

  • Apply the brown coat

Proceed to add the next coat. Be sure to spread the mix evenly and level it so that the brown coat comes off as being flat and level.

  • Apply the final coat

You are almost there! Be sure this coat is somewhat thick and evenly applied.

  • Texturize

Make use of a sponge to give the stucco that finished texture. You can then proceed to paint the stucco if you didn’t already add pigments to the mixture. Painting the edges is also advised to cover up the seams.

 

Interior Painting Tips

Posted on 23 April 2018 (0)

Purchasing:

  • Instead of buying a large quantity, buy a quart first, in case you don’t find the color attractive enough. Apply some paint on a piece of foam board, and then move it around the room to see the effect of light on the color.
  • Make sure you know the exact square footage of the room you want to paint before going to the store.
  • Don’t apply an oil finish on latex and vice versa without sanding the walls first and wiping the dust particles away using a tack cloth.
  • Don’t downplay how long it’ll take to complete the job. Give at least 24 hours for the paint to dry before bringing all items back to the room.
  • Paints have VOCs (volatile organic chemicals) that can expel harmful gas into the air for a long time after painting a room. So, buy eco-friendly paint with low or zero VOCs.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Prep work:

Paint won’t stick well to dirty walls. Clean them with TSP or soap and water, rinse with water when you are done and leave it to dry overnight.

  • Clean the ceilings before painting.
  • Don’t cover the floor with plastic because it can be very slippery, old sheets or drop cloths are better options.
  • Fill holes and caulk where necessary.
  • Removing outlet covers allows for a neater paint job. Tape the screws to the cover, and tape over the light switch or outlet to avoid paint stains on them.

Painting Ceilings:

  • Scaffolding comes in parts known as “bucks” and “cross bucks”. For painting high ceiling, four bucks should be enough. To rent a buck, it costs about $12 per day. You’ll also need: planks or walk boards that will be placed along the bucks, you can rent each of this for about $10 per day. Wheels are important because they allow for an easy movement of the scaffolding. You can get four wheels on rent for $25 per day.
  • You should use a thick-nap roller when you are painting a textured ceiling in order to get a full coverage over irregularities and bumps in the textured surface. You can use a roller with a shorter nap for smooth drywall ceilings.

Top Five Benefits of Painting Your Home’s Exterior

Posted on 17 April 2018 (0)

Painting the exterior of your home is one of the improvements that can change the look of your home, whether old or new. Repainting your home’s exterior can make your house to stand out from the other homes in the neighborhood. Repainting the exterior of your home does more than just giving your home a pretty look. Besides adding value to your home, repainting your home helps prevent materials from rotting faster. In short, repainting the exterior of your home will benefit you in many ways than you could imagine. This is why homeowners are advised to repaint their walls at least once every 5-8 years. To shed more light on why painting your home is an excellent idea, here are the top benefits of exterior home painting

Improved Aesthetics

Chances are you may have hated the color of your home since you first moved into that house. If you loved the color, you may have different tastes now and you feel you want to change. Do not neglect the aesthetic value that house painting is able to bring. House painting will give you a new and livelier look of your home each time you pull into the driveway. Give your home a fresher look by applying a new paint coat to your siding.  

Give Your Home a Barrier

Keeping your exterior walls in good condition helps protect it from external elements. Besides looking nice, the exterior paint is also meant to create a protective layer. With a protective paint, sun, rain, rot, mildew, insects and other invaders will have no way to get into your exterior finishes.

Extend the Lifetime of Your Walls

Regular painting of your house will ensure that the wall stays in a better condition and have a longer lifespan. Regardless of the type of siding you have, painting is necessary for them to remain in good condition. A fresh coat of paint prevents wear and decay of your siding helping you save money you could spend on a replacement.

Boost the Value of Your Home

Painting the walls of your home is a smart and cost-effective way raising the value of your home. Besides giving your home a new look, you will also impress potential buyers who visit your home. Potential buyers will appreciate the house is in good condition and has been well-cared for by the owner. Although painting seems like a minor cosmetic repair, you’re likely to get returns on this investment.  

Better Curb Appeal

A fresh coat of paint is one of the easiest ways you can use to curb your home’s curb appeal. The aesthetic value of your home isn’t only for you as the owner. Curb appeal is about setting your home to give a good first impression to a prospective buyer. When a potential buyer likes the appeal of your exterior, they will be interested to get more details about your home and stand a chance to buy your home.