Accordion Gates

Accordion Gates

Accordion gates in the first place have nothing to do with music. Rather, it has something to do with public and residential security. In what sense? Well, you read on.

Many people are currently looking for accordion gates to secure their warehouses, their bay doors, their aisles, and other restricted areas. These gates are generally excellent for situations where compact, restricted access is a priority; however visibility as well as air flow is also desired as well. As you may know, security and access aren’t mutually exclusive.

The accordion gates generally come in different forms, but they are usually folded. They are designed to make the facilities more secure and still allow frequent and easy access to those who need it. As folding gates, the accordion gates fold easily back and out of the way especially when people or equipments need to pass. However, they mostly offer a lockable barrier when closed.

It is further worth noting that most of the accordion gates are crafted from heavy-duty steel U-type channel riveted back to back. This is actually the reason that the accordion gates are also called “steel gates”. Also, they typically come in single or double, and all the double gates are commonly protected with drop pins. As you may know, some even feature steel ball bearing swivel casters for an easy opening as well as closing. There are also some accordion gates that feature webs that are riveted to vertical rails. The rivets are generally held behind in order to prevent tampering. Also, with this kind of accordion gates, welding is not necessarily required for installation.

Today, most of the available accordion gates are intended for pets and babies security. These gates are called pet gates or baby gates, and they are usually made of metal, plastic, or wood. As, a pet gates, they are designed to help keeping the dog out of trouble as the accordion gates restrict the dog’s access to specific rooms or areas. The gates also confine him to acceptable surroundings. This is also true with babies. These gates are generally a better option to simply closing a door to restrict or confine your pet or baby.

Most of the accordion gates are also used in residential elevators. They basically feature solid panels that are joined with steel hinges and sealed with premium vinyl for a gate that completely closes the car opening and eliminates pinch hazards. Just like the pet and baby gates, this kind of accordion gate generally carries the concepts of quality and safety as top priority.

Window Blinds

Window Blinds

Lamp Light
Source: Flickr

Popular Blinds
Changing the look of your home really is not that difficult and does not require any more effort than installing window blinds. This might not seem like a very big deal to you, but once you have window blinds installed you will realize the huge difference it makes in the feel of your home. This is because window blinds add a softness to your windows and you can control the amount of light that come in your home and the amount of privacy you need and want. Blinds really do have a lot of uses and come in a variety of styles and colors. Some of the most popular types of window blinds include Roman blinds, Venetian blinds, mini blinds, vertical blinds, and woven wood blinds.
There are a large selection of blinds that include Venetian blinds, mini blinds, Roman blinds, woven wood blinds, and vertical blinds.
Each of these types of blinds offers a special function or design that will enhance your home’s décor.
Venetian blinds are the typical horizontal blinds that can be raised or lowered depending on your need for light or privacy. They come in a variety of colors, sizes, and fabrics depending on your budget and needs.
Mini blinds are simply miniature Venetian blinds that can be installed in the window frame to create a different look. These can be purchased in the same price ranges as Venetian blinds as well as the variety of colors.
Vertical blinds are frequently made of a fabric composite, or even plastic or wood, and hang vertically. Because of this, vertical blinds are generally used to screen patio doors and larger window areas.
The woven wood blinds are natural looking as well because they are made from wood, weed, and grass fibers. As a result, they are great for homes that use a lot of wood and natural fibers as well in the décor.
Another option is to have your window blinds custom made in the exact fabric and style you desire as well dyed to match color if you desire. Having your blinds custom made does cost more money, so you might consider asking for a quote before choosing this option.
If your home needs a little updating, or some softness, then do some research on the types of blinds that are available in your budget. Then, decide on the colors and styles that will best reflect the unique design of your home. Once you pick out this, you will be able to buy your blinds.
Installing blinds in your home will really make a difference that is visible and that you will really enjoy. The best thing to do is go online or to your local home store and find out what blinds are available in your budget and the ones that would look best in your home.
Go ahead and start shopping for blinds that will update the look of your home without changing it. You can do this bit of decorating for a small budget and will see major results in the look and feel of your home.

Avoiding Crime When Parking Your Car

Avoiding Crime When Parking Your Car

Theft and Vandalism
– Wherever possible, provide each dwelling with its own locked garage within the property boundaries. Locked garages outside the boundaries or well-lit and visible common car parks are the next best things.
– Where private garages are not feasible, carport or driveway parking is preferable to grouped parking away from dwellings.
– As a general rule, underground or multi-story car parks should be avoided, as they are breeding grounds for vandalism and crime. If they already exist, limiting entry points and providing them with sturdy locked gates could minimize danger. Alternatively, each resident could be provided with locked gates could minimize danger. Alternatively each resident could be provided with a lockable garage in their own space, with robust, vandal-proof metal doors – garages within garages, so to speak. Or users can be provided with a secure lock or a plastic keycard, which operates electronic doors.
– Grouped car parks should be avoided in high-crime areas. If they cannot be avoided, they should be within view of some dwellings; they should be equipped with sturdy gates or tilt doors, and should never be sited near alleyways.
– Open car parks should be small and within view of dwellings and visitors’ car parks should be clearly identifiable, well lit, and visible from dwellings.
Rape, Assault, Robbery
– To make car parks safer, planners should provide direct access from parking areas to the entrance of dwellings.
– Car parks should be no further than 60 meters from dwellings, and the path should be well lit and free from shrubbery.
– Visitors’ car parks should be well lit, clearly identifiable, and visible from dwellings.
– Access to enclosed car parks should be limited to residents by some form of electronic entry control device if possible.
– If it is desirable to limit access to dwellings, make sure access via car parks is monitored as well.
– In high-crime areas, advanced technological surveillance methods may be needed in car parks. For example, an infrared unit is available which detects the presence of intruders – but not cats and dogs – by body heat, and automatically switches on all lights in the car park and turns them off after 15 to 20 minutes.

Vertical Roller Blinds

Vertical Roller Blinds

If you’re about to change the interior of your room, certainly, it has a lot of work to do. You can start in changing the color of the walls and ceiling for the delight of your eyes to see. Then, you can rearrange the current positions of the bed, chairs, and tables. You can also bring additional decorative stuffs on the wall and to the windows.

With regards to the windows, if you had enough of the style, you can be able to bring it back to life. By giving your window the needed additional value, a vertical roller blind is the answer.

Vertical roller blinds simply not add value but also beauty to your restyled room. Vertical roller blinds are also an inexpensive mean to finally decorate and redesign your room. For you to choose, roller blinds are available in different kinds of materials and can provide the alternative way for using shutters and curtains.

Specifically, vertical roller blinds can give improved light control than having horizontal blinds to your window room. Also, vertical roller blinds are steadier than setting up your window with horizontal blinds. Since vertical roller blinds can be opened in sideways, roller blinds can work not only to your window room but also for your doors in the home. Vertical roller blinds can be opened from the middle or from the side. In combining your vertical roller binds with a sliding glass door, it can do great wonders in restyling your room.

The vanes of the vertical roller blinds of your choice can be made from aluminum, fabric, faux wood, or vinyl. In choosing of what kind of material, it will depend to what is will suit on the new idea of your room.

Vertical roller wood blinds will fit if you have some wooden furniture in the room. Roller wood blinds can come in different colors and several wood tones. Due to that wood blinds have their natural look and improved insulation capabilities, it can cost you more. For you to know, roller wood blinds need more care than aluminum or vinyl blinds.

Vertical roller blinds that are made of fabric material can be also an option to your room. Due to the fact of their opacity, roller fabric blinds don’t stop the light totally from going through your room. So it can give a spectacular effect in combination of shade and light entering your room. Vertical roller blinds can be operated by either of a cord or safety wands. Safety wands nowadays are more popular as they function in precise and is more durable than cords.

So in fixing your styled new room is up to you. With vertical roller blinds of your choice, your room will never be the same again.

8 Tips for Renting the Right Apartment

8 Tips for Renting the Right Apartment


Source: Flickr

So, you’re looking for an apartment to rent or share with a roommate. Whether you’re a first-timer or an experienced apartment-hunter, it’s worth taking the time to decide what’s most important to you in where you live and to plan your search strategy accordingly. With that in mind, here are eight tips to consider:
1. Make a list of your top housing priorities.
Do you need extra parking spaces? A place that welcomes pets? A large kitchen or linen closet? A ground-floor entrance to your home? Or what? Thinking through your needs ahead of time can help you find an apartment that meets those needs, instead of one that just strikes your fancy at first glance.
2. Check out the property.
In addition to examining the condition of the for-rent unit, walk through the property to see whether it appears to be well-maintained. Is the landscaping healthy or dying? Nicely trimmed or growing wild? Are any windows, steps or railings broken or dangerous? Do the access doors open easily and shut tightly? Walk through at night, too. Are the parking areas and pathways well lit? What about the stairwells and hallways?
3. Talk to the neighbors.
If you’re serious about a particular apartment, knock on a few doors and ask your potential neighbors whether they’re satisfied with the building’s amenities, management’s responsiveness to repair needs and other issues of concern to you. Ask: Would you tell a friend to move into this building?
4. Examine the lease.
A lease is a legal obligation to pay rent for a specified length of time, and every lease has variations on the terms and conditions of tenancy. How much notice must you give before moving at the end of the lease term? Can the rent be increased? Are pets allowed? What provisions cover your security deposit and end-of-lease cleaning costs? If the terms of the lease agreement don’t suit your needs, negotiate or reconsider renting the apartment.
5. Consider security.
Does the building have controlled access? If so, are the exterior security gates and doors closed? Are the locks in working order? Does your individual unit have secure door locks and window latches? (Some states have specific laws regarding minimum security devices for apartment units.) Does the building have a security service? If so, is a guard on duty 24 hours or does he or she just drive by periodically?
6. Ask about shared facilities.
Does the building have a swimming pool? A recreation or fitness room? Tennis courts? Laundry facilities? Who is allowed to use those facilities and during what hours? Is there an extra fee charged for use of the facilities? Where are the facilities located in relation to your prospective apartment? Do you really want to live poolside or near the laundry room?
7. Ask about utility costs.
Is the water bill paid by the owner or separately by the tenants? Are electrical or gas utilities included in the rent? Is there a single thermostat for the entire building? If so, who controls it?
8. Take notes.
Before you move in, document the condition of your unit and make note of any nonfunctioning doors or windows, leaking plumbing, missing fixtures, stained carpets and so on. Ask your landlord to initial a copy of your documentation to prevent disputes when you eventually move out. Better yet, take pictures or make a video of the premises before you bring in any of your furniture or belongings.

Window Blinds for Your Protection

Window Blinds for Your Protection

Window blinds are the coverings used for the windows to give shade and privacy to your place, generally attached to the interior side of the window. The good thing about using these blinds, is that you can control the amount of light coming in simply by adjusting the blinds.

Types of window blinds:

Window blinds come in various types:

Slat blinds: These blinds have numerous flat horizontal slats, which are joined with string so that they can be rotated. This allows light to pass between the slats. To keep the light out, they can be rotated up to 170 degrees, or to clear the window they can be pulled up. By pulling a cord or rotating a connector which is attached to the string, the rotation can be achieved, and a different string is used for the raising and lowering of the blinds. There are other versions where both the mechanisms are combined into one single rod. Slat blinds include:

Venetian blinds: Introduced around 1770 in Venice, these blinds are made of plastic or metal, and sometimes even wooden slats are used, which are known as wood blinds or bamboo blinds. The width of the slat ranges between 50-120 mm.
• Miniblinds: These are basically venetian blinds that have slats measuring from 19-24 mm only.
Vertical blinds or track blinds: These blinds use plastic or metal horizontal slats which can be rotated ninety degrees to allow the light to come in, or can be folded to the side for a clear view through the window.

Solid blinds: Often called window shades, these blinds unlike venetian blinds, cannot be rotated. But they can be rolled up or folded to allow the light to come in. These blinds include:

• Holland blinds: Known as roller shades, as they have rolling window blinds which can be pulled down.
• Woven-wood blinds: The slats used are made of decorative wood or bamboo, which are woven together using colorful yarns or other decorative material. These blinds can be rolled up or folded out of the way. They are energy efficient, have greater light control, and are economical alternatives to shutters.
• Pleated shades: These blinds consist of pleated fabric shades which can be pulled up to the top of the window.
• Honeycomb shades or cellular shades: They are similar to pleated shades, but here there are two or more joined together at the pleats forming compartments to trap air, thus giving the room insulation to save on your energy bills. Cellular shades come in various styles, such as double and triple cell styles.
• Roman shades: These blinds have a cord woven through the fabric that allows you to raise or lower the shade in an accordion pattern. They are easy to operate and are very efficient in insulation.

While installing your blinds, you should see to it that the blinds are unobstructed such that when it is fully extended, it can still hang freely. It is necessary to cut the blinds to make them fit in the windows. You have to measure the width and length correctly before cutting the blinds. You can also put the blinds in your bathroom windows. Choose pleated or cellular shades with privacy backing to keep outsiders from looking into your windows.

You can choose the window blinds that suit you best from the variety of blinds available. Window blinds are extremely beneficial, not only for protection from sunlight, but also to prevent onlookers from peeping through your windows.

Home Security (5)

Home Security

You may not believe it but most burglars do not plan their break ins. They are crimes of opportunity. They pick what appears to be a simple target. If they see a greater risk than they anticipated, they move onto a safer target. Therefore the more effort you take to keep your home from seeming to be a simple target, the safer you will be.
A multilayered structure is the best way to approach arranging your home security, and the first layer is the landscaping and other features of your yard.
Landscaping and Yard Security
A few simple changes to your landscaping can help to protect your home from would be burglars.
They are looking for a home they can get into and out of quickly; the more time they spend in your home the more chance of getting caught. Their best target is a home surrounded by tall hedges and shrubs, which restricts visibility from the street and your neighbours’ houses.
Trim your shrubbery and trees so that your doors and windows can be seen by neighbors, and from the street, by forgoing a little privacy you will not be providing a hiding place for a burglar. If you have more than one floor, prune trees away from upper floor windows to prevent an intruder using them as a ladder, also make sure any trellises won’t provide a convenient ladder to gain entry to the upper floors.
All planting close to the sidewalk, driveways, doors or gates, should be kept low say no more than two feet in height. As you move further away from the sidewalk you can increase the height but keep it down to no more than four feet.
Any plant under the window should be kept below the windowsill.
Trees should have their lower branches trimmed to at least seven feet off the ground.
Be sure to keep your lawn trimmed; an uncut lawn will indicate to a potential burglar that you have been away from your home for some time.
By placing gravel on the ground under windows you will be warned if someone walks on it, this can be a useful psychological deterrent. Remember not to have any large rocks or stones near glass windows or doors. There’s no point in providing a burglar with his tools!
Plant spiny (thorny) plants along fences and under windows, and on border fences, roses are ideal. Protecting your home with spiny plants is as good as using barbed wire, and it looks a lot better too.
Street Numbers.
Make sure your house number can be seen easily from the street. This can save time for the police and emergency services if they need to find your home.
It is best to use numbers made of reflective materials, or alternatively black on white, they should be at least six inches high to facilitate visibility from the street. Keep the number clean and trim any plants, so it can be seen. The number should be illuminated and near the front door or the garage entrance.
Limiting Access to Yards and Store Rooms:
The main thing burglars are looking for is an obstruction free and speedy exit. Fences will stop burglars from carrying away your larger processions, if the gates are locked. Gates should be locked at all times!
Make sure that any ladders and tools are stored in a garage or a storage shed, and these should be locked when not in use. To increase security chain your ladder to the wall of the garage when it is not being used.
The idea is to use the landscaping to control access to your property. Proper fencing hedges etc. create barriers that will make a potential burglar feel uncomfortable as they approach your home, but will not prevent a neighbour or passer by from seeing any unusual activity.
I will be covering additional steps you can take to improve your home security in the next article in this series.

Different Kinds of Blinds and Shades

Different Kinds of Blinds and Shades

Macro Mondays Monochrome
Source: Flickr


Blinds and shades are window coverings common for similar purposes such as giving privacy to the people inside a particular establishment or protecting the interior part from direct sunlight.

– Slat blinds made of vinyl or metal is consisting of many flat horizontal slats connected to a string which have a 170 degrees rotation adjustments for hiding the light or it can be pulled up to clear the window. The blind rotation is dependent on the connector being attached to a pulling cord or string, so the lowering and raising are done by pulling different strings.

Venetian blinds are slatted blind having either a plastic or metal composition. There are also available slats made of wood pertaining to wood or bamboo blinds. The slat width ranges from 50 to 120mm but the most common width is 50mm.

– Mini-blinds are Venetian blinds having narrower width slats ranging from 19 to 24mm.

Vertical blinds have slats made of plastic, metal or stiffened fabric hanging from a track on its one end. The horizontal slats has a 90 degrees rotation for allowing light to pass or can be fold up to either side of the window or doors. They also called as track blinds.

– Solid blinds can be fold up or roll up but it cannot be entirely opened so that light can pass through. These types of blinds are populary called window shades. These blinds include:

• Holland blinds also known as roller shades can be pulled down to roll the window blinds.

Wood blinds that are woven have slats made of decorative bamboo, wood or other woven natural material with a colored yarn, simple string or other materials having decorations almost similar to a solid blind. This blinds are roll up or fold up for light adjustments. Woven wood blinds are affordable shutters alternatives, energy efficient and has a greater control over lights.

• Pleated shades are made of fabric with pleated shades being pulled up so that it could flatly sit on the window’s top corner.

• Honeycomb shades resembles a pleated shades, the only difference are the other layers being sewed on the pleats forming a compartment trapping the air for insulation purposes. If you want higher insulation and energy efficiency, look for more cells counts.

• Roman shades are made of woven wood or fabric. It has excellent insulation and easier operation.

Blinds and shades vary in kinds, so choose what suits your needs best.

Spring Cleaning for Driveways, Paths, and Parking Areas

Spring Cleaning for Driveways, Paths, and Parking Areas

Time was when most houses were approached on foot up the garden path and entered through the front door; the horse or carriage presumably was left by the front gate. The advent of automobiles and busier roads has left the front doors of many older houses high and dry, blindly facing a busy highway on which it is no longer safe for horse or automobile to tarry. Many of these older houses are now entered by what was once the back or side door, and a new approach has been necessarily created, often involving some form of driveway and parking space. Modern houses are designed with their main entrance oriented to the automobile’s requirements, usually up a private driveway. In the suburbs, it may be a short suburban tarred strip; in the country, a longer shaled driveway leading to the house.

Whether you have a short or a long driveway, it will need certain maintenance from time to time. Make your inspection after you are sure the last snow has come and gone. If yours is a gravel driveway, clean up and rake back any gravel that may have been snowplowed off (usually onto the adjoining lawn).

If you have a blacktop driveway, check for cracks and holes. If these are minor, they can easily be repaired with special tars available from hardware stores and lumberyards. Occasionally, the whole driveway can benefit from a coat of blacktop sealer that creates a new wearing surface.

Similarly, minor repairs to concrete driveways are easily made at this stage using a concrete mix that can be bought in small sacks from building suppliers, lumberyards, and many hardware stores. (See pages 21-24 for more information on concrete repair.)

If yours is a longer driveway made of shale, crushed stone, split rock, or gravel, it will probably require more regular maintenance than either blacktop or concrete. Snowplowing, if necessary in your area, can exact a heavy toll by removing surface material along with the snow.

Any hole or rut-even a small one-will be enlarged by the action of rain and runoff and eventually become a major hazard. No matter how carefully a graded driveway is originally graded, sooner or later it will develop ridges and depressions that begin to collect water. The holes seem to grow of their own accord; in attempting to skirt them, drivers gradually change a smooth, straight run into a winding obstacle course.

This process, however, can be slowed greatly by a little rake-work now and then. When all the frost is out of the ground and any heaved sections have subsided-and the ground is reasonably dry-fill in holes and depressions with material raked from the high spots. If permanent ruts across the driveway persist from heavy rains and runoff, consider installing new or additional culverts to carry off the excess water.

Even though it is important not to begin to level your driveway or parking area until you are certain that cold weather has subsided and all the frost is gone, early spring is the best time of year to do this kind of work, especially if you are undertaking more extensive repairs like major reshaling or adding additional parking space. Spring repairs allow the driveway to be compacted firmly (by use) during the summer, minimizing the amount of loose surface material that snowplows may later scrape away.

Much of what has been said about driveways is pertinent to paths. Paths and walkways that are not well drained or that are constructed over bases unsuited to their climate can suffer considerable e-raised paving material, loosened bricks, and misplaced flagstones. Before attempting any repair, wait for the effects of winter the rainy season to subside.

A Concrete Way To Raise Your Home’s Profile

A Concrete Way To Raise Your Home’s Profile


Increasingly, homeowners looking for an inexpensive way to make their home more livable and increase curb appeal with an eye toward resale are embracing the nationwide trend of creating outdoor living spaces.

These areas usually feature spaces for entertaining friends and family while grilling, dining, eating and relaxing. That often means room for a patio, a grill, a sink or a fireplace. Some think of it as adding a family room without the roof.

For many, the building technique of choice when creating these spaces calls for using segmental concrete paving. This technique employs interlocking units-called concrete pavers-that are strong, durable and are growing in popularity worldwide. In Germany, for instance, there are 15 square feet of pavers installed per person annually. In the Netherlands, most of the streets and sidewalks are made of pavers.

Often used in walkways, patios, plazas and historic restoration projects, pavers are manufactured in a variety of shapes, textures and colors and can be easily removed and reinstalled.

One kind of home-improvement project where pavers are increasingly being used is a raised patio. These patios are known for their durability and can create a new sense of space in a yard, particularly when extended to meet an existing deck. Such spaces can be used as an outdoor entertainment area, complete with hot tub or barbeque pit.

There are a number of reasons why pavers have become popular in projects such as these:

• Their uniform size and quality allow them to fit tightly together for a strong, interlocking surface.

• Paver joints allow for a small amount of movement without cracking. That means they won’t crack like asphalt or poured-in-place concrete.

• Their design makes them easy to install and repair

• They’re available in a wide variety of shapes, colors and textures.

• And they can be installed by either a professional or a skilled do-it-yourselfer.

One of the newest styles offers the high-end look of stone for a more modest price. Called “tumbled” or “antiqued” pavers, they can be used to add a stately look to a walkway, patio or driveway.