RE/MAX 440
John F. O'Hara

John F. O'Hara
731 W Skippack Pike  Blue Bell  PA 19422
Phone:  610-277-4060
Office:  215-643-3200
Cell:  267-481-1786
Fax:  267-354-6973

My Blog

5 Misconceptions About Composite Decking

June 8, 2016 2:06 am

(Family Features)—Composite decking has been an option for homeowners for over 20 years—yet misconceptions about it still exist. Decking and railing brand Trex Company and HGTV’s “Decked Out” stars Paul Lafrance and Kate Campbell debunk the most common composite myths below.

Myth #1: Composite decking looks unnatural.

“Composite decking has evolved tremendously since its beginnings more than 20 years ago,” says Campbell.

Products today mimic natural wood well, Campbell says, with a range of grains and finishes that replicate woods naturally found all over the world.

Myth #2: Every composite deck is manufactured from the same material.

“Since composite decking was invented in the early 1990s, the market has been flooded with competitive offerings varying widely in quality, aesthetics and value,” Lafrance says. “For my projects, I use what is categorized as 'high-performance' composite manufactured with an integrated, three-sided shell, or 'cap.' Capped boards feature an added layer of protection against severe weather, heavy foot traffic, fading, mold and staining.”

Myth #3: Composite decks do not need maintenance.

“Anything that sits outside in the elements for years on end is going to need some type of maintenance,” Campbell says. “When it comes to decking, the difference lies in how much upkeep is required.”

Natural wood decking requires regular sanding, sealing and/or staining, and can splinter, warp or rot, raising the potential for more costly maintenance measures; composite decking only requires a rinse twice each year, says Campbell.

Myth #4: Composite decking is costly.

“Over time, wood decking actually ends up being more expensive than composite,” Lafrance says. “Sure, the initial cost of pressure-treated lumber is less than wood alternatives, but since a deck is a long-term investment, it's important to consider the long-term costs, such as all the materials you'll need for seasonal stripping, staining, painting and sealing.

“Add to that the time and cost involved in repairing and replacing wooden deck boards that will inevitably warp and splinter over time—even if they are well-maintained. When you factor in the cost of ongoing maintenance required with a wood deck, a composite deck ends up paying for itself in the long run.”

Myth #5: Composite decking is not eco-friendly.

The opposite is true.

“Because it is made primarily from recycled content, composite decking is remarkably eco-friendly,” Campbell says.

There are several sustainable options available to homeowners, says Campbell. Consult with a composite decking manufacturer to learn how its products are produced with the planet in mind.

Source: Trex Company

Published with permission from RISMedia.


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7 Tips for a Healthier Home

June 8, 2016 2:06 am

A healthy home—one free of bacteria and pollutants—requires upkeep in several areas. Fortunately, many healthy home maintenance tasks are simple, and can be done in a matter of minutes.

“Small actions can make a big difference when it comes to creating a healthier home,” says Sarah Norman, director, Healthy Homes and Communities for NeighborWorks America.

What are these actions? Norman and NeighborWorks America outline principles of healthy homes:

A Clean Home – Vacuum your home with a high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) product regularly to keep dust from accumulating. Clean with products that are non-toxic, biodegradable and/or unscented.

A Maintained Home – Don’t let your home fall into disarray. Make minor repairs as soon as you are able, and check the structure and systems in the home periodically.

A Safe Home – Test smoke and carbon monoxide detectors monthly to ensure they are in proper working order. If you have children, take steps to childproof the home. These might include locking up chemical-based products, installing cordless window treatments and covering wall outlets.

A Contaminant-Free Home – Have your home tested for radon. If it tests positive for above-safe levels, install a radon removal system. In addition, if your home was constructed prior to 1978, have a lead repair and removal specialist fix cracked or peeling paint.

A Pest-Free Home – Adopt “IPM” (Integrated Pest Management) strategies to keep pests from entering the home. These might include sealing cracks in the structure of the home and storing food in airtight containers.

A Dry Home – Inspect your home—the roof, gutters, and plumbing fixtures—for leaks regularly, and fix them as soon as you are able. Keep an eye on your basement for any signs of water. (You may need to re-grade the home’s foundation if the problem persists.)

A Well-Ventilated Home – Promote air circulation, particularly in the kitchen and bathrooms, with an efficient ventilation system. Be sure the system moves air outside of the home

Taking these steps will go a long way towards a healthier household for you and your loved ones. A healthy home, after all, is a happy home.

Source: NeighborWorks America

Published with permission from RISMedia.


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