DogGoneHandy Blog

Summer time is on its way here in Atlanta and the only thing that can truly make this heat bearable is your air conditioning unit. This is one of those things most homeowners don’t give a thought to until there is a problem, and then it’s a big problem Spend a little bit of time on preventative maintenance and you may save yourself some money and heartache in the heat of the summer.   Central air conditioners have two separate components: the condenser and the evap­orator. The condenser unit is usually located outside the house on a concrete slab. The evaporator coil is mounted in...
If you are thinking about backyard gardening, here is a quick primer on raised beds including some planning tips and things to consider when laying out your garden. Raised bed  gardens can reduce back strain because you won’t have to bend over as far to reach the plants. With easier access and less pain potential, you're better able to enjoy the labor involved in planting, tending, and harvesting your raised vegetable garden. Build your raised beds so they're at least 12 inches tall. If the walls are slightly below waist level, you can sit on edges to work the soil and harvest your...
Take a close look at your windows, doors, and skylights to stop air leaks, foil water drips, and detect the gaps and rot that let the outside in. You can perform a quick check with a home air-pressure test, or your own energy audit   Luckily, these inspections are easy to do. Here’s how to give your house a checkup:   How to Check for Air Leaks A home air pressure test sucks outside air into the house to reveal air leaks that increase your energy bills. To inspect windows and other openings: Seal the house by locking all doors, windows, and skylights. Close all dampers and...
Well, it is that time of year again. The rains have stopped, the taxes are filed, and we are thinking about home projects to get done before summer hits.  It's time to take inventory of the outside of your home. Here are a few pointers on how to maintain the envelope and ultimately the health of your home.  Take a good look at the area just under the roof. This is the area which takes the most abuse and also does the heavy lifting to keep the water out. It is also the spot where squirrels and the like try to enter your home. This includes the fascia board and rake molding...
In honor of Earth Day, we have collected some great ideas and tips to help you save some energy around the house and save a little of the planet while you're at it! Heating System Clean or replace heater and air conditioner filters regularly. Keep outside vents free of leaves or debris that may clog vents. When the heat is on, set your thermostat at as low a level as you feel comfortable. You save for each degree you lower the average temperature of your home. Close doors to seldom used rooms and turn off heat or air conditioning in these areas. Keep windows near your...
Spring is a great time to think about home maintenance. Here is a carefully compiled list of some of DogGoneHandy’s favorite maintenance chores. Roof. You don’t need to climb up there yourself; with binoculars and a keen eye, you can probably spot trouble. Do you see any shingle-shift, suggesting that some fasteners may have failed and need replacing? Any cracked or missing shingles? What about nail-pops? When a nail pushes the tabs of the shingles up, water can seep into those spots. All will need to be addressed to keep your roof at peak performance. Chimneys. If you have a...
throom renovations don’t have to be big, messy, expensive and painful. If you have a standard bathroom that has seen better days, a renovation can be easily within your reach. The key to a smooth bath remodel is planning.  When a wise person said “the devil is in the details” one wonders if they were talking about home renovation!The first step is to think about what doesn’t work in your space. That’s probably the easiest part and on the forefront of your mind. But maybe think a bit deeper. If lack of storage is something you struggle with, identify which specific items you can’t...
Wood rot seems to be a growing epidemic in homes and something we see a lot here at DogGoneHandy. Some of the rot can be traced to poor maintenance habits by homeowners, some to poor building practices by the trades and, believe it or not, some to the lumber companies. If you want to prevent wood rot, you need to keep it dry. Wood rot is simply different fungi that are consuming the wood. The fungi need water to live. You keep wood dry by keeping it painted and sealed. It's also a great idea to keep it above horizontal masonry or concrete surfaces by at least 2 inches. Before you attempt to...
Winter is fickle here in Atlanta. Relatively mild for weeks then a blast of freezing temperatures, then buds and blooms appear the next week. As Southerners, we sometimes don’t prioritize maintaining our home for the cold months. Here are some tips to plan ahead for next year. Winter-proofing your home is important for multiple reasons. For one thing, it helps prevent damage to your home due to leaks, moisture, and other problems. For another, winter-proofing helps conserve energy and saves you money on your energy bills. Make Sure Your Furnace is in Working Order. Change your furnace’s...
Painting is often the easiest and most affordable way to give your home a facelift. Here are some good tips to ensure your paint job is one you’re pleased with. It's difficult to tell what a color is going to look like on your wall from a small paint chip, so many manufacturers offer sample containers of their colors. Depending on the manufacturer, you can buy sample containers in quarts, pints or even smaller sizes, and they range in price from $3 to $8. They're a wise investment that will prevent you from wasting money on a color that isn't right. And because colors can change dramatically...

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