Before you install fiber cement shake siding, review and ensure compliance with all local building codes and regulations regarding the selection and proper use of sheathings, water-resistive barriers, flashings and other building materials and systems.
Individual Shakes must be installed over wall construction with framing spacing 16″ to 24″ o.c. (max.) and a minimum of 7/16″ OSB or 1/2″ plywood sheathing. Use double hot-dipped galvanized or stainless steel fasteners. Do not use electro-galvanized fasteners because they corrode faster, especially in coastal areas.
Starter Strip You can use fiber cement, vinyl utility trim, or PVC skirt board as a starter strip. When starting installation at ground level, establish a straight, level chalk line to guide the positioning of the starter strip and the shake starter course.
- Find the lowest point of the sheathing and make a mark that is 1″ above the lowest point. The bottom edge of the siding will be 2-1/4″ below the mark you just made. Make sure this point is high enough to ensure that the shakes are installed at least 6″ above the finished grade or 1″ above surfaces where water may collect.
- From this mark, snap a level chalk line to the opposite end of the wall. Repeat this step around the entire house.
- Using the chalk line as a guide, attach a starter strip.
Starter Course To ensure that the keyways are fully backed by fiber cement, install the first course of Individual Shakes over a full starter course of 9-1/4″ lap fiber cement siding. If you are transitioning from less than 9-1/4″ Lap Siding to Individual Shakes, use 9-1/4″ Lap Siding as your starter course at the transition. If you are starting the wall with Individual Shakes, place a starter strip under the starter course.
Using the starter strip as a guide, attach the starter course so that the bottom edge will project at least 1/4″ below the bottom edge of the starter strip.
- Place the fastener 1″ from the top of the panel and no closer than 3/8″ from the edge. Drive the fasteners a minimum of 1-1/4″ into the structural framing, but do not over-drive the fasteners and do not place the fasteners in the center, unsupported area of the siding.
- Fasten from one end of the panel to the other.
First Course of Individual Shakes
- Install the first shake with the bottom edge slightly below the starter course. Be sure to maintain a 1/8″ gap at all trim locations. Always caulk between the siding and the trim.
- Place fasteners 1″ from the side edges and 9″ up from the bottom of the shake.
- Continue installing shakes in a random manner, mixing the 6-1/4″, 8-1/4″ and 12″ shake sizes.
- Maintain a 1/4″ keyway gap between shakes. Use the edge of a shake or a piece of 1/4″ plywood as a jig to maintain even spacing between Individual Shakes.
Second and Subsequent Courses
- Select and position the shake 8″ up from the bottom of the previous course, such that course-to-course keyway spacing is no closer than 1-1/2″.
- Place fasteners 1″ from the side edges and 9″ up from the bottom of the shake. Fasteners must penetrate the top of the shakes of the previous course.
- Continue installing shakes in a random manner, mixing the 6-1/4″, 8-1/4″ and 12″ shake sizes to maintain the 1/4″ keyway gaps and 1-1/2″ minimum keyway spacing.
- Individual Shakes are designed and installed to create a straight-edge, 8″ exposure finished application. Alternative applications, such as staggered edge, can be achieved with the Individual Shakes following the basic steps noted above. However, the exposure should never be less than 6-1/2″ and the fastening location should be kept 9″.
- Tree ailments diagnosed
- Pruning, tree removal and leaf removal services
- Tree stumps removed
- Soil analyses performed
- Emergency help when a tree has been damaged in a storm
- Assistance with insect and disease control
- Help with planting new trees
- Fire wood
- Post-construction tree maintenance
- Ask to see verification of current certification before you allow work to begin.
- Compare estimates
- Insist on securing a signed contract that outlines the services to be performed, the time period in which they will be performed and the cost.
- Don’t pay for any services until they are completed.
- Ask that tree spikes not be used unless necessary.
The weather outside can be frightful, which of course means you can turn your attention to maintaining your appliances and indoor systems.
|Exterior, Basement & Foundation|
|Check your home’s crawlspace for water damage, animals, or other foreign matter.
|Interior & Appliance|
|Look for leaks in toilet water feed and tank bottom.
|Clean your washing machine’s water inlet filters. Check hoses and replace if leaking.
|Trip circuit breakers and GFI’s, or ground fault interrupters, monthly to insure proper protection
|Check for leaks around and under sinks, showers, and tubs.
Turn on the faucet and check for leaks in the pipes under the sink. Look for mold on shower walls that could indicate there’s leakage behind them. And check for cracks in the grout where the tub meets the floor.
|Replace or clean filters in furnace
|Clean grease filter from your range hood
|Clean out the refrigerator, wash door gasket, clean drain hole and pan, vacuum the condenser coils.
|Backyard & Landscape|
|As fall ends, rake the last bit of fallen leaves to prepare for winter
|Spot treat any cases of winter weeds in warm-season turf & spread a crab-grass pre-emergent
Light Surface Carpet Cleaning
- Wet Shampooing - A professional carpet cleaner will apply shampoo to your carpet with a buffer machine. The machine operator must be careful not to damage your carpet with the rotary discs on the buffer. After the solution dries in one to several hours, as much of the residue as possible is vacuumed up. The disadvantages to this method are that you’ll have to wait for the carpet to dry and that some residual dirt and shampoo will inevitably remain at the end of the process.
- Dry Cleaning - There are several different methods to “dry cleaning” carpets. Some are completely dry methods, and others involve using wet cleaning solutions that dry very quickly.
- Absorbent Powder - In this method, a professional sprinkles a solvent onto your carpet and allows it to set for a short time. He or she will work the powder into your carpet with a buffer machine. With no drying time, as much of the residue as possible is vacuumed up. This method, unfortunately, will also leave some residual dirt and residue in your carpet.
- Bonnet - Professional carpet cleaners will often use a buffer machine with a bonnet attachment that is dipped in cleaning solution that contains carbonated water. As they work the machine over your carpet, the bonnet absorbs the dirt. Once the bonnet is saturated, it is replaced with a clean one. The advantage here is that most of the dirt in your carpet leaves with the soiled bonnets.
- Dry Foam - This is pretty much the same process as the shampooing method of carpet cleaning, except dry foam is used instead of shampoo. The obvious advantage here is that there is no drying time. There may be some leftover solution, but that is easily vacuumed up after cleaning. In fact, some cleaning machines will have a vacuum built in just for this purpose.
Deep Carpet Cleaning with Hot Water Extraction
The dry cleaning methods above are great for a quick cleaning of the top 1/3 of your carpet. However, to ensure your carpets are thoroughly cleaned, have them professionally deep cleaned at least once every 12 -18 months. This will help prolong the life of your carpet.
There’s only one method available for a genuine cleaning of this type: external (or hot water) extraction. This method is commonly referred to as steam cleaning, although no actual steam is used. Advances in this technology have made it the safest, most popular, and most thorough method of carpet cleaning available. A floor wand shoots a pressurized combination of solution and hot water into your carpet that is immediately vacuumed into a holding tank.
While a portable, rentable unit utilizes the tap water and electricity of the household, a truck-mounted system is self-contained and exhausts all the dirty air and humidity directly out of your home. A truck-mounted unit will also provide higher pressures and hotter temperatures for a deeper clean that will let your carpet dry faster. Be sure to ask any potential carpet cleaners to if they use the preferable truck-mounted system.
Professional Carpet Cleaning Prices
Another big consideration with professional carpet cleaning is price. Some things to take into account when comparing prices for carpet cleaning services are:
- Most remodeling companies charge per square foot of carpet and by the number of rooms and floors. Prices vary, but typically, you can expect to pay from 15 to 30 cents per square foot for a home that has 5,000 square feet or less of carpet. If you have a home with more than 5,000 square feet of carpet, a cleaning should run you less than 15 cents per square foot. The less carpet you have, the more you’ll pay per square foot. This is standard because the carpet cleaning company still has to drive to your house, set up the equipment, etc.
- Inquire about the different methods of carpet cleaning. Find out what types they typical use, what they recommend for your particular needs, and what the different costs are for each carpet cleaning method.
- Ask about additional costs for removing tough stains and odors and prices for cleaning staircases and area rugs. Keep in mind that rug-cleaning costs may vary depending on the material.
- Think about any other remodeling contractor services you might want in advance. For example, does your upholstery need cleaning? If so, it should be cheaper to go ahead and do it while you have the cleaners there if you can afford it.
|Better Energy Efficiency with Vinyl Siding|
Have you ever wanted to relax on a nice summer day without being exposed to all those outdoor nuisances? Consider adding a screened porch to your home! Learn to love your home with the various options and benefits that a screened porch can offer you like the residents of this West Fenwick Island Delaware home did! The screen porch was complimented and enjoyed to it’s fullest potential by also adding a deck and patio! We here, at Alcoa Construction, added a screen porch, deck, and patio expertly to this West Fenwick home!
Here are some pictures of the the porch addition, deck, patio, and beautiful lattice work!
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This is a siding replacement that we here at Alcoa Construction completed on this West Fenwick home!
Some might ask why it is pertinent to replace old siding. Well, often times the exterior of the home can wither significantly increase or decrease the value of a home. Aesthetically, what is on the exterior of your house creates the first and often lasting impression of your home. Functionally, the siding material protects your house’s structure from the elements, mainly rain and wind driven moisture. Siding should be selected based on cost, aesthetics, durability, maintenance requirements, and environmental impact.
The owners of this particular home chose to go with cedar impressions. We removed the old siding from the home. We then proceeded to replace the siding with new cedar impressions! The end result was a beautiful looking home that fit perfectly into the beach decor of the area!
The home with the new completed siding replacement!
The siding removal and replacement in progress.
For more information on siding replacements or any other remodeling needs please visit our home page and feel free to contact us!
Contact Alcoa Construction today and start reaping the benefits of a siding replacement!
Alcoa Construction 29L Atlantic Ave #161 Ocean View, DE 19970
800-785-4401 (phone) 800-785-4951 (fax)
admin@alcoaconstruction . com http://www.alcoaconstruction.com
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Various Deck Designing Options
The addition of a deck to a home is an option that many homeowners are choosing. The benefits of a deck addition are countless. Everything from enhanced barbecues to relaxation can be achieved through a deck addition. Deciding to add a deck to your home is the easy part. Then comes the more difficult choice of exactly what type of deck to build. This article contains several options that the decking industry provides when it comes to enhancing your home with a deck.For a more detailed list talk to a professional deck contractor or deck installer.
Platform decks are the first type of deck. They are built low to the ground and built on level lots. Railings are often not necessary with this type of deck because it is so low to the ground. Several people who have opted for a platform deck are enhancing the deck even further with bench seating, angles, and curves. Another trend popping up among platform decks is the addition of a gazebo or screened room on the deck. This adds both style and function. It is aesthetically pleasing and provides a big free outdoor environment for dining and relaxation.
A second type of deck design is a raised deck. Raised decks are are added on houses with above grade first floors. This particular type of deck must include railings for safety and outdoor access to the yard. Raised decks are often seen with lath or lattice paneling skirting the deck.
Second story decks are a fun option in the decking world. They provide outdoor access to the upper level of the home that would not otherwise be had. They require large supporting posts to support the deck. These posts add visual interest and structure. These posts are sometimes covered with decorative boards or rick faced pillars are used instead.
Another type of deck gaining popularity is a multi level deck. Multi level decks are a series of decks connected by stairways and walkways. They are a perfect addition for sloped lots. The numerous deck areas follow the contour of the lot. Decking, with this type of deck allows the owner to enjoy all aspects of his yard and truly enjoys the benefits of a deck. For example: part of the deck will lay in the dun while another part provides shade and a beautiful view.
The final option when it comes to deck building is a free standing deck. Free standing decks are not attached to the house. They are a good deck option if the home’s construction won’t allow for a ledger board to be bolted into the house framing. Free standing decks are perfect for highlighting the best parts of the yard. They can serve as an extension of the landscaping on the home. They are beautiful overlooking a pond or garden.
Remember when considering a deck for your home weigh out all of the options and choose a design that best suits your needs. For a free home deck estimate and more options for your deck call custom deck builders, such as Alcoa Construction today!
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May is National Deck Safety Month.
According to the North American Deck and Railing Association (NADRA), between 2000 and 2008 there were at least 30 deaths reported as a direct result of deck collapses. More than 75 percent of people on a deck when it collapses are injured or killed. With 40 million decks in the United States that are more than 20 years old, the NADRA says it’s important to check decks.
NADRA says some older decks may only have deck-to-house attachments using only nails and other glaring faults. A knowledgeable deck builder can remedy a deck up to state code, licensing and insurance requirements.
NADRA released a four-page deck evaluation checklist for contractors rehabbing or installing a new deck. Questions include:
- Is the ledger attached to an acceptable wood rim joist?
- What is the foundation type? Post size?
- What is the post-to-concrete connection?
- What is the post-to-beam connection? Has the connection been bent or modified?
- Regarding the joist: does the hanger have double-shear nailing? Are the correct nails installed in the hangers?
- What supports the stairs? Rise/run?
- On composite decks, if it is a hidden fastener system, what lateral support has been provided?
- Are all fasteners properly seated and flush with the connection?
- Are all connector holes property filled?
National Kitchen and Bath Association Reports Trends for 2010 Results are in from a recent survey of designers conducted by the National Kitchen and Bath Association to reveal the key design trends for 2010 NKBA News Release January 13, 2010
Hackettstown, N.J., Jan. 12, 2010 — The results are in from a recent survey of designers conducted by the National Kitchen and Bath Association (NKBA) to reveal the key design trends for 2010. The results of the NKBA 2010 Kitchen & Bath Design Trends Survey confirmed the continuation of a number of existing trends in the marketplace, but also uncovered others that indicate shifts in the direction that kitchen and bath style will take this year. Below are 2010’s seven kitchen trends and four bath trends.
- Traditional is the New Contemporary
Traditional will continue as the most popular kitchen design style in 2010, with contemporary following closely behind, while the Shaker style is seeing a surprisingly strong resurgence. Shades of whites and off-whites will be the most common kitchen colors in 2010, while brown, beige, and bone hues will also be popular.
- Cherry on Top
Cherry will remain the most popular wood for kitchen cabinetry, followed closely by maple, while alder increases in use. As for the finishes placed on those cabinets, medium natural, dark natural, glazed, and white painted will all be common. Other colors of painted cabinetry and light natural finishes are in decline, however, as are distressed finishes.
- Floored by Tile
Ceramic and porcelain tile, as well as natural stone tile, remain popular kitchen flooring options, but hardwood will dominate the kitchen landscape more than ever in 2010. For countertops, granite continues to be the most popular option, but quartz will nearly catch up in popularity. For backsplashes, ceramic or porcelain tile and glass will serve as the primary materials.
- Flexible Faucets
Standard kitchen faucets will become less standard in 2010 in favor of more convenient models. Pull-out faucets continue to increase their market dominance, while pot filler faucets will also become more prevalent. Kitchen faucets will most often be finished in brushed nickel, followed by stainless steel, satin nickel, and — surprisingly — polished chrome.
- Undercounter Refrigeration
French door and freezer-bottom are the two most popular styles of refrigerators, and side-by-side refrigerators remain a popular option. A surprising trend is the extent to which undercounter refrigerator drawers are being used in the latest kitchen designs. Perhaps even more surprising is that undercounter wine refrigerators have been recently specified by half of kitchen designers.
- A Range of Cooking Options
The tried-and-true range continues to serve as the workhorse for cooking, although the combination of a cooktop and wall oven is beginning to overtake it. Gas will maintain its position as the most popular type of cooktop over electric, although induction cooking continues to gain in popularity due to its energy efficiency.
Standard dishwashers, with the traditional door that pulls from the top down, will once again be easily the most common type in 2010. However, an increasing number of dishwasher drawers will be installed in kitchens this year for their convenience and their ability to wash small loads of dishes in each drawer, thereby saving water and electricity.
- In With the Old, Out with the New
Traditional will be the most popular design style in bathrooms in 2010, as contemporary designs will be a distant second, followed by the Shaker style as an even more distant third. Beiges and bones will be the most common colors used in bathrooms, followed by whites and off-whites, and then by browns, indicating a somewhat subdued color palette this year.
- Ceramic and Granite
Ceramic and porcelain tile will be the dominant flooring materials in bathrooms this year, while natural stone will continue to prove popular as well. Though increasingly popular in kitchens, hardwood flooring won’t become common in bathrooms in 2010. For vanity tops, granite will remain king, with quartz and marble also proving popular options.
- Simple Fixtures
Perhaps more than ever, the most common color for fixtures will be white. Bisque and off-white will be the only other fixture colors at all common in new or remodeled bathroom. For sinks, simple undermount models will be most popular, followed by integrated sink tops, drop-in sinks, vessel sinks, and pedestal sinks.
- A Nickel for Every Finish
Faucet finishes in the bathroom are similar to those used in current kitchen designs, with brushed nickel continuing to lead the way in 2010. Polished chrome and satin nickel will also be incorporated into many bathrooms, just as they had been throughout 2009. These faucet finishes will be followed by bronze and stainless steel.
About the National Kitchen & Bath Association
The National Kitchen & Bath Association (NKBA) is a non-profit trade association with nearly 40,000 members that has educated and led the kitchen and bath industry for more than 45 years. NKBA.org provides consumers with an inspiration gallery of award-winning kitchen and bath designs, as well as articles, tips, an extensive glossary of remodeling terms, and illustrations and explanations of planning guidelines. At NKBA.org, consumers can also find certified kitchen and bath professionals in their areas, submit questions to NKBA experts, and order the free NKBA Kitchen & Bath Workbook.
Our primary service areas are Sussex County Delaware and Worcester County in Maryland. The cities we most frequently serve include Ocean View, Bethany Beach, Millville, Fenwick Island, West Fenwick, Selbyville, Frankford, Dagsboro, Millsboro, Long Neck, Rehoboth, Dewey Beach, Lewes, Harbeson, Georgetown, Milford, Slaughter Beach, Milton, Greenwood, Bridgeville, Seaford, Laurel, Delmar, Salisbury, Pittsville, Berlin, Ocean Pines, West Ocean City, and Ocean City. We also serve Kent County Delaware, Wicomico County Maryland, and Talbot County Maryland.
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