Natural Cleaning Tips For Copper Awnings

Copper awnings can give a beautiful and unusual look to your windows, adding real kerb appeal to your home.  Although it is durable and long-lasting, copper metal can lose its bright, polished look over time, and continual exposure to the elements can cause the material to become weathered and tarnished.  Some people like the patina that copper takes on, but if you prefer your awning to remain looking shiny and new, you’ll need to clean it regularly.

Here’s how to keep your copper awnings looking dazzlingly shiny, without the use of harsh, chemical cleaners.

What you’ll need

  • washing-up liquid
  • warm water
  • clean, soft cloths
  • soft duster
  • lemon juice
  • salt
  • flour

How to do it

This project will only take you a couple of hours to complete and is best done on a dry day when it’s not too hot and sunny so that your cleaning paste doesn’t dry out too quickly. 

  1. The first thing to do is to make up a mild solution of warm water and washing-up liquid.  Use soft cloths dunked in the cleaning solution to wash off any surface dirt from the awning.  Never use abrasive sponges or wire wool on your copper awning, as you could scratch it and dull the surface.  
  2. Rinse away any remaining soap suds with clean water.  You can use a garden hose for this job, but don’t use a powerful pressure washer or you could damage your awning or windows.  
  3. Now allow the awning to air-dry naturally.  
  4. Copper naturally begins to tarnish when exposed to the elements, resulting in discolouration and dulling of its original shine.  To rectify this, make up a paste of equal parts lemon juice, flour, and salt.  Dip a soft, dry cloth in the paste and apply it to any areas of tarnish on the awning, using a gentle pressure and circular, polishing motion.  
  5. Leave the paste on the awning for fifteen minutes or so to activate; the acidity of the lemon juice will gradually dissolve the tarnish.  
  6. Wipe away all the paste with clean, warm water and soft cloths.  Finish off by rinsing the awning thoroughly with clean water, using a hose pipe.  
  7. Allow the awning to dry naturally.  
  8. Finally, use a soft duster to polish your now beautifully clean awning to a dazzling shine!

In conclusion

There’s no need to use harsh chemicals to remove everyday dirt and tarnish from your copper awning.  You can return your awning to its former glory by cleaning it regularly, as per the instructions given above. For more information, contact a business such as IQ Shutters Pty Ltd.

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Practical Ways to Keep Your Car’s Upholstery in Great Condition

What’s the point of being a luxury car owner if you allow your upholstery to become torn, unkempt and discoloured? Fine interiors are things of beauty, not minor additions to top-of-the-range cars, and if you let them become damaged, it can have a huge impact on the value of your vehicle.

Thankfully, there are some easy ways to protect your car’s interior from damage so that it holds its value and retains its aesthetic appeal for as long as possible.

Invest in a Sturdy Set of Seat Covers

Placing a fabric seat cover in between passengers and high-quality upholstery is always a sensible move. In Australia, there are some gorgeous seat covers on the market, many of them featuring soft, welcoming sheepskin materials. With a couple of them in place, your seats won’t just be protected from damage, they will also be more comfortable for your passengers.

Use the Right Cleaning Agents for Your Upholstery

Sometimes, even the cleanest cars experience the odd stain. As soon as you detect the stain, leap into action with a cleaning product that is formulated for your seating material. Don’t use generic fabric cleaners on leather seats. Go for specific leather cleaning fluids. You might remove the stain itself, but the wrong cleaning choice can instantly create permanent marks that no detergent can erase.

Keep Leather in Perfect Condition

Leather doesn’t just need its own cleaning products. It also requires special conditioning measures to maintain its soft feel and shiny appearance. Conditioning leather requires specialist products. Make sure that your seats are bone dry before applying conditioner and always follow the instructions about how long to apply conditioner. If you condition your seats every few months, they should remain almost brand new until you sell your vehicle.

Make it Harder to Cause Stains

Many food stains are easily avoidable, but it’s harder to keep car interiors clean when children are involved. One good idea is to keep any drinks in secure containers and to have a no-food policy in the car as much as possible. You don’t need to prohibit all foods. Dry foods like cereal bars and crisps are probably OK. They can be cleaned away with vacuum cleaners. However, chocolate and jam-based snacks should be kept away from your seats at all costs.

Install Tinted Windows to Prevent Fading

Tinted windows are often seen as a way to provide privacy for drivers and passengers, but they actually have a much more practical application. Modern tinted car windows don’t just restrict glare; they also filter out UV rays in sunlight. This limits the speed at which upholstery fades, prolonging its lifespan and ensuring that the rich tones of your leather remain dazzling and pure for years on end.

With high-tech tinted windows and low-tech measures like seat covers, you should be able to protect luxury interiors from damage. Just try to keep melting chocolate away from the hands of kids.

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Low Cost Tips for Reducing Traffic Noise in Your Road-Facing Bedroom

When you live in a bustling city, traffic noise is something you have to accept. Some people can block it out, and some even find it comforting, like white noise. Of course, there are people who find traffic noise stress inducing and struggle to sleep because of the din. Double glazing can make a difference, but it’s not cheap, and it rarely removes the noise entirely. If you’ve just moved into a new home and are unfortunate enough to have a bedroom that faces onto a busy road, read on for three great noise reduction tips that are cheaper than double glazing.

Start at the Boundary Fence

You’re looking to reduce the sound by making it travel through as many things as possible. Anything you put in the sound wave’s path is going to help. If you have a front garden, add some planting that can help reduce sound. Opt for high, dense bushes or hedges at the boundary fence. A non-invasive bamboo can also work well. It will dampen sound and create a pleasant swishing noise that gives you something else to focus on. Planting can also work psychologically — when you can’t see the road and traffic, it’s generally easier to ignore it.

Shut out at the Sound at the Window

The next barrier can be at the windows themselves. Roller shutters should muffle some of the noise by adding an extra barrier between your bed and the traffic. They’re a good choice if you’re looking to add security too. These aluminium shutters are fitted outside over your windows and can help lower the temperature of your bedroom’s glazing. The lower temperature may mean you’re able to get away with sleeping without the windows open during hot summer nights.

Dampen Sound with Decorative Additions

Now you need to work on dampening any noise that’s still getting in. If you’re willing to decorate, you could consider using cork tiles to create a feature wall. These can be left in their natural form for a warm, cosy look for your bedroom, or painted in a colour to suit your taste. Consider hanging thick curtains to reduce the sound further and some nice thick tapestries on the wall space around the window. Thick scatter rugs will also help absorb some of the sound waves that make it through the other barriers.

Hopefully, with these measures, you’ll find yourself sleeping like a baby in no time. You can also be comforted by knowing that before long, you’ll probably get used to the noise and won’t even notice it — many people do.

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Ways to Secure Your Windows

If you are trying to secure your home from intruders, you should start with the windows. Intruders often know the doors are going to be locked, and might look to use the windows to get into your home instead. Here are some different ways to make your windows at home more secure.

Install Security Screens

The first thing you can do to have more secure windows in your home is to install security screens. These are usually made of durable material, like steel, and will prevent someone from breaking the window in order to get into your home. The steel is virtually indestructible, so an intruder won’t be able to get through your home through any of the windows. In addition to being protective, it can also help reduce the heat from UV rays and can even keep pests out of your home.

Try Security Film

You can also consider using security film on the outside of your windows. This also helps to reduce the ability to shatter the windows, which is often how intruders gain access into your home. The window film is invisible, so you don’t need to worry about how your windows look after installing it. However, it can reinforce the glass and make it hard to shatter, as well as reducing the likelihood of cracks or other damage.

Have Bars Installed on the Windows

This is not often something people want on their windows, but if your home has been broken into before or you live somewhere with a high crime rate, it can definitely be worth it. Your home doesn’t need to look like a jail either; there are many different types of decorative window bars that actually add to the aesthetic of your home instead of detracting from it. A thief will most likely not be able to break down the sturdy steel or iron bars, and you will have better peace of mind when using the bars on rooms where your children sleep.

Set Up Window Alarms

Just because you have a home security system doesn’t mean it will sound when someone tries to get through a window. Most alarms will only go off when one of the doors is opened and the code is not pressed. However, you can get alarms that include sensors on windows of your home so that, if one of those windows is opened when the alarm is set, it will go off immediately. This gives you early warning to be on guard and often causes a burglar to run away so they don’t get caught.

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A Buying Guide for Commercial Window Films for Your Business

Window films are usually applied directly to the window for various reasons such as providing privacy and sun protection by reducing glare and blocking harmful rays. Most commercial businesses today also install window films to reduce energy bills and create a comfortable working environment for their employees. There are different types of commercial window films on the market today, and understanding their features and applications can help you choose the ideal one for your business needs. Here are some of the most common ones.

Sun control window films

Sun control window films are primarily designed to prevent solar gain during the summer and reduce heat loss through the windows during the winter. They also block the harmful UV rays of the sun from penetrating into the building. They also reduce glare, especially on computer skills, which can significantly affect the performance of workers or cause vision problems.

Most types of sun control films usually limit the amount of light that a room receives. However, there are spectral designed films which protect against heat gain and loss, but also allow in more light. Spectral designed films reduce lighting costs during the day, but they are costlier than standard films.

Privacy window films

These window films are designed to offer some degree of privacy to a building or particular room. They can be used in particular parts of the building such as offices, bathrooms, and conference rooms where the need for privacy is paramount. These films have a frosted or reflective surface and give a sand-blasted or frosted effect to the window. They are available in different degrees of tint; therefore, you can choose one that best suits the application. Some privacy films, especially ceramic window films are shatter resistant.

Decorative window films

Decorative window films feature a textured, stained, etched, or frosted film which is designed for decorative purposes. They can be used in retail stores and shops where you want to add a decorative touch to the windows to promote your products. These films are available in different designs and patterns which are suitable for lightening up a dull window. In addition to adding a decorative look, they also block UV rays; however, they do not offer significant heat protection. These films are often removable and reusable.

Anti-graffiti window films

If your business is located in an area where vandalism through graffiti and painting is common, you may consider investing in anti-graffiti window films. People usually invest in these types of films to protect their windows. The films are inexpensive and easy to remove and replace in case they are drawn on or painted.

Depending on the desired application, you can choose different types of window films for different windows. Hire a professional to install these films so that you can get the best value from them.

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How to Install Bifold Doors

Bifold doors are common for interior doors such as closets. However, bifold doors can also be installed for windows. Installing bifold doors is a simple process that you can do on your own. Read on for a step by step guide on installing bifold doors for your windows.

Take Measurements

Measure the height and width of the opening where you are going to install the doors. If the opening is too high or wide, you may need to add some extra framing to make the doors fit. If the opening is too low or narrow, you will need to trim the doors. Frame the opening with door casing and jambs just like you would an ordinary door.

Adjusting Hinges

Many bifold doors come pre-installed with hinges. However, if you bought bifold doors that have no hinges, you will have to install the hinges on your own. Hinges should be installed 7 inches from the top and 11 inches from the bottom.

Install the Header Track

The header track attaches the doors to the door frame. Centre the header track on the top of the opening and note where the screw holes are positioned. Drill the pilot holes and screw the header track in place.

Set the Pivot Brackets

Insert the pivot bracket to the top of the door and in line with the header track. Pivot brackets should be set ¼ inch from the frame of the door. Align the lower pivot brackets with the hardware that is on the floor. Ensure the bottom pivot bracket is aligned with the top bracket using a plumb bob.

Insert the Pins and Adjustable Pivots

Bifold doors come with nylon guide pins and adjustable pivots. Fix the pins to the pre-drilled holes on top of the door. Fix the adjustable pivots to the pre-drilled holes on the bottom of the door.

Install the Doors

Fold the doors in half and fit the guide pin on the header track. Lift the door and fit the adjustable pivots in the pivot brackets below. Make sure your doors are level using a plumb bob. If the door is not plump or level, you can make adjustments by rotating the lower track sockets and pins until you achieve the right position.

Fix the Door Knobs

Drill holes in the middle of the doors. The ideal position to fix your knobs is 36 inches from the floor. The holes should be the same size as the door fastener. Insert the screws from behind the door to secure the doorknob. Attach the door knob and screw it in.

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Tips for Choosing a New Exterior Door for Your Home

When your front door needs replacing, this can be a good time to upgrade to a door that’s more secure or one that is more attractive overall. Choosing a front door is not always as easy as you might assume, simply because there are so many choices available to you. This is why it’s good to take your time and note all the features they offer:

1. Energy efficiency

While a wood door may look attractive, steel and fiberglass external doors may be more energy efficient and work better to insulate your home. Wood often conducts cold and heat, so it may let in hot air during the summer and cold air during the wintertime. If you live in an area with extremes in climate, opt for a steel or fiberglass door.

2. Security

Steel is typically considered the strongest material for safety, but if you must choose wood, opt for a strong, dense variety. This would be oak or maple, versus bamboo. The thickness of a door also affects its durability, so be sure you choose a solid wood door versus one that is hollow if you must choose wood.

The doorjamb itself also affects its strength, so you might upgrade the doorframe at the same time as you have a new door installed. A steel frame might be stronger than your current wood frame, and a deeper deadbolt can keep the door from being kicked in. 

3. Glass

It’s not unusual for a front door to have some type of glass window or insert, to let in light and to make the door more attractive. However, glass can be more easily broken than the door itself. Be cautious about glass near the doorknob, as a thief can break the glass and then reach in and unlock the door.

If you must have glass on the door, look for leaded glass or glass block, as these are thicker and harder to shatter than standard glass. When you have glass inserts or sidelights on either side of the door, be sure they’re set back from the doorknob enough as well, and that they’re too narrow for someone to enter this way after breaking the glass.

Note too that you may want to check if there are limitations to the type of door and lock you can use on your home; some areas may ban certain deadbolts as they make it more difficult to enter in case of an emergency.

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5 Ways To Prevent an Influx of Flying Pests in the Home This Summer

Summertime means long days, hot nights and plenty of entertaining with friends and family. For many, it’s the best time of the year, but summer in many areas, especially in Northern Australia, is also prime pest season. With the warmer weather comes the breeding season of many household pests, particularly bugs.

These 5 different ways will help eradicate and pest populations in the home, and deter and deter pests from making your home their too:

1. Use Ant Repellents

Ants are particularly problematic in summer and may be difficult to control, even if food is properly stored and kitchens are kept clean. As strange as it may sound drawing chalk lines at entry points to the home including the threshold at the front door will help to repel ants. Ants also hate mint and lemon juice, so it might be worth using a liquid mint extract or lemon juice around cracks in walls, doors and around window architraves.

For more stubborn populations try using an over the counter bait like ant sand. Ants will collect these granules and bring them back to their colony, helping to stop ant populations in their tracks.

2. Install Fly Screens

Like their name suggests, fly screens keep flies out of the home, but they also provide a barrier to many other flying pests including mosquitoes, moths, cockroaches and even the most destructive pest of all – swarming termites. This makes them one of the most effective methods to prevent pests getting into the home. If you can’t afford to have new fly screens fitted, magnetic fly screens are an effective and more affordable alternative.

They can easily attached to all window sizes and frames with a magnetic base strip that sticks to aluminium, timber and PVC window frames to which the screen locks in place. The benefit of fly screens during the summer means you can still let fresh air in, keeping the home cool, while keeping flying pests out.

If you want more help or have other questions, try contacting a company such as Phantom Screens Perth.

3. Keep the House Clean

Summertime means being particularly diligent with cleaning. During the summer months as even the smallest crumbs or a sticky floor or bench can be enough to attract hordes of ants, flies and roaches. Be sure to remove food from pet food bowls to avoid unwittingly providing a food source for these pests. As well as wiping benches, floors and sealing food properly, make sure to stay on top of taking out the rubbish. Just a few flies can be enough to lay an infestation of maggots. In just a few short hours after they hatch, it can be enough to turn a lazy summer’s day into a nightmare clean up scenario.

 4. Keep Fans Switched On

The good news about ceiling fans, or other plug in fans, is as well as keeping you cool, they help to they work to keep pests away. Mosquitoes, moths and other flying bugs don’t do well with breezes either natural or ‘fan made.’ When sitting outdoors or indoors, an operating fan will provide a basic solution will keep flying pests away.

5. Electronic Fly Zappers and Bug Lights

Electronic zappers will attract flying insects to their source, electrocuting them. Placing these electronic zappers around outdoor areas can stop pests in their tracks and control populations before they make it into the home. They are also an ideal solution to enjoy the outdoor lifestyle in your backyard without lathering yourself in DEET or other insect sprays. They will also help to ensure your outdoor barbeque is not spoiled from flying bugs.

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About Me

Your windows provide you with views of the great outdoors, warming sunlight, and protection from rain and storms. Because they perform such a critical role in our lives, I believe that you need to choose your windows carefully. You also need tips and ideas on maintaining and repairing them. That is what I am going to do with this blog -- I aim to create a place where everyone, from renters, to homeowners, to contractors, can go to access up-to-date and relevant information on windows. Hi! My name is Jerica. Welcome to my blog. I hope that you find my posts useful.

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