Can Green Waste Have An Adverse Effect On The Environment?

This is one of those times when the answer is, ‘It depends’. It really depends on what you do with the green waste as to whether the effect it has on the environment is good, or bad.

So, what is green waste? Green waste is a very general term that people use to cover ‘biodegradable waste’.  Think of your trees and bushes; think about your backyard and garden. When you cut your lawn, the resultant grass clippings are green waste. When you pull weeds out of your garden, those weeds are green waste. When you trim branches, prune bushes … that’s green waste.

It doesn’t just have to be you that causes green waste. High winds can cause leaves and twigs and branches to fall to the ground.

So, green waste occurs when what was once connected to something alive is now no longer connected to that live thing. By itself, the green waste is no longer living.

Now, you’d thing ‘green waste’ would be great for the environment. It’s green … after all. But it all depends on what we do with the green waste.

Just Dumping Green Waste Into Landfills Is Bad For The Environment

A lot of people will just dump their clippings, and branches and what-not into the landfill. We think that because it is biodegradable then it won’t cause any issues. And yes, green waste does biodegrade, but it doesn’t degrade properly in a landfill.

When branches fall from tree in nature, or anything else that we would classify as ‘green waste’, were it to happen in our home, happens in nature, decomposition begins. This happens naturally and is good for the environment.

However, when green waste is put into landfills, it is compacted tightly because space is at a premium. When compacted tightly, there is far less oxygen available to allow for the safe and natural decomposition of the green waste; instead, the decomposition process is fuelled by bacteria that produces methane, which is a far more potent cause of greenhouse gases than is carbon dioxide.

It’s also bad for our waterways.

As bad as methane is, it’s not the only by-product produced when green waste biodegrades in a landfill. The process also creates something called ‘leachate’.  Leachate occurs when falling rain seeps and flows in through the myriad channels and gaps and holes and tunnels in the landfill; the moving water collects all manners of chemicals and other decomposing matter along its journey, becoming more and more toxic. This liquid could then find its way into our lakes and rivers and streams, and possibly even into a city’s drinking water. As you would expect, this could easily cause issues with people’s health.

What Are The Alternatives?

Recycling and composting. Composting is decomposition done right. It allows air into the equations and ensure that biodegradation is done naturally. And recycling uses the raw products in green waste to create new products, ensure that what is then thrown away is far less in volume. Landfills are not infinite in size. They are placed in our cities and are therefore bound by defined borders they can’t outgrow. Anything you can do to make sure less waste ends up on our landfills the better.

There is one final option, and that is letting the professionals do the job for you. There are companies how remove green waste for you, and they will know how to ensure that the green waste will not be simply thrown onto a landfill, but is carefully recycled or biodegraded through natural means.

Dry v Steam Carpet Cleaning – What to do?

Do you steam clean or dry clean? The choice is yours. But how do you choose? You need to know the pros and cons of the different types of cleaning processes.

We are talking about cleaning your carpets, of course. Vacuuming is the basic method of cleaning carpets, but every so often a deeper cleaning is required. If you want to dry clean the carpet, this is what you should consider.

DRY

Whatever cleaning method you use, start with a good vacuuming to remove surface dirt. There are generic products in powder form to be sprinkled onto the carpet, then agitate with a brush, and vacuumed up. An expert carpet cleaner will use specialised solvents, mixed with a small amount of water, and apply to the carpet with their professional cleaning machine. The solution will dissolve oily residue, dirt and gunk in the carpet, making it easy for the machine to suck up all the undesirable contaminants.

Dry cleaning leaves your carpet more or less dry, so that it can be walked on before too long. This is important in office areas, or high traffic areas. But for deep down cleaning of more stubborn stains, steam cleaning is a better option.

STEAM

Steam, of course, must be applied by a “steam cleaner” machine. You can hire a steam cleaner each time you want to perform this particular task. “Steam” also means “Hot”. The hot water jet is sprayed into the carpet. The steam cleaner will suck up the water, along with the dirt and other contaminants that were hiding in the depths of the carpet pile. Think vacuuming with extra hot water. This does give the carpets a more substantial clean, and deals with all the nasty things that you didn’t know were living down there.

However, steam cleaning leaves the carpet wet. Doing it yourself for the first time, you might just be administering more water than necessary, thinking that more is better. But this can be damaging to your carpet. So be careful about that. The steam cleaning process needs more time to dry, so think about administering this cleaning process at a time when the area does not need to be used. In office areas, it could be done at the weekend. At home, it could be done in areas that can be shut off for an appropriate time.

Steam cleaning will probably give the best result, but if it disturbs the members of the household or office too much, it is counter productive. Dry cleaning would be the best answer in this case, but it may need to be done more often.  So there are benefits and negatives for both types of cleaning. Even the type of carpet you have will dictate which cleaning process works best. In this case an expert’s advice would lead you to the right method. You will find many expert carpet cleaners in your area by searching the internet.

Does Having Good Gutters Increase Your Property Value?

You might be looking at the title of this article and thinking, ‘I know the answer to this without reading it. Of course, they’re going to say ‘Yes’’.

To which we say, ‘Stop trying to read our thoughts and predict what we are going to say.’

And also, we say, ‘Well … you are only half right.’

Which means that you are also half wrong. Because the answer is ‘no’ and ‘yes’.

The Case For ‘No’.

Gutters are deceptively simple things. Their one function in life is to be a go-between for the water on your roof to get off your property. That’s it. They’re a delivery system. You don’t look at it in the morning and go, ‘Wow. What a view that gutter provides.’ You don’t sit on them on a nice afternoon, relaxing, while you read a book in the cool afternoon breeze. You don’t cook at them. You don’t sleep on them.

Landscaping your backyard, renovating your kitchen and bedroom … those are things that can increase your property value. But having good guttering?

No. They don’t increase your property value because it is expected. Like your house having clean carpets is expected. Like your house having a front door that can be locked is expected. You don’t list ‘working gutters’ alongside ‘4 bedrooms, massive walk-in-wardrobe, swimming pool, and helicopter pad’ in your house listing.

Because having working gutters is expected.

The Case For ‘Yes’.

However … having broken gutters can quite clearly decrease the value of your property. When your gutters are working fine, looking clean and presentable, and basically doing what gutters are supposed to do, which is provide a clear path for the water from your roof to get off your property without damaging anything else, your gutters do not add any additional value to your property.

But having gutters that are broken, causing water stains on your walls, leaks on your roof, erosion problems at your home foundations, will clearly and obviously drive your property value down.

Gutters provide value when they are, for all intents, invisible. They’re there … but no one cares. They do their job, and that’s it. The only time gutters are noticed is when they negatively affect your property.

So What Does This Mean?

It means that you should always have your gutters in tip top shape. They don’t add value, but bad gutters decrease the value of your home.

A simple and cheap way of keeping your gutters in great shape is by having them professional gutter cleaned, like these professional gutter cleaners in Omaha, NE. Blocked gutters can cause all manners of problems for your gutters, your roof and your home foundations.

Blocked gutters don’t allow the water to pass, and water is very heavy, particularly as it soaks into the debris in your gutter. This can cause your gutter to sag and come apart from the roof. The blocked water can also spill over the edges of the gutters and soak into your roof (leading to roof rot and rust, and leaks that need to be repaired), or flow down your external walls (producing mold on your exteriors) and forming pools of water at your foundation. This can lead to erosion of the soil around your foundations, and that can lead to cracks in the foundation.

Calling a gutter cleaner is an easy way to ensure that your gutters don’t decrease the value of your property.

Costly Errors That Can Be Fixed With Proper Gutter Cleaning

People make mistakes about gutter cleaning which can lead to major problems which would be much more costly to fix compared to fixing the problem, either doing it yourself or getting someone to come and do it for you. You will find that there are always people who will do the jobs you don’t want to do yourself.

So, what are these errors / mistakes that homeowners make?

Waiting for gutters to be full before cleaning them

Some homeowners don’t think about whether the gutters are clean, until something happens to remind them about it, namely a storm or heavy rainfall which can’t drain away because of all the stuff blocking the gutters. Then the gutters overflow, and water has to find somewhere else to go. You will have a waterfall down the side of the house. You will have a lake forming in your roof area and ceiling. Roof and ceiling repairs due to water damage will not be easy to do, and will definitely be expensive. Your lovely landscaping will be badly affected by that falling water, and that water can also get into your foundations, perhaps eventually causing structural damage.

Checking gutters after heavy storms

Heavy rain and storms with their strong winds can do damage, and we can all see the after effects in our neighbourhoods. But most people don’t think about what damage can be done by storms to our gutters. It is important to check the gutters and roof after the storm has passed, to make sure there is no damage which would need to be fixed before the next rain episode comes along. A person who has experience in assessing this damage can give you their expert opinion.

Gutter guards

Yep, gutter guards can be a mistake. They might be useful in keeping large leaves out of your gutter, but there is no gutter guard that keeps everything out. There will still be all sorts of grit and dirt that can get through the grids. You won’t see this muck under the guard. And if they are not UV protected, they will disintegrate eventually and you won’t even know about it. Then the guards turn into matter similar to what they are supposed to be guarding against.

Thinking cheap

It is not nice to have to say this, but some cleaning companies think that they will get more customers if their prices are low. But to keep their prices low, they don’t use the best equipment or processes to do the job of cleaning up your gutters. Anyone could use a leaf blower and get all the leaves off the roof, but that doesn’t do a complete job. Sometimes companies give a basic quote for a basic job and then find other things they should be doing when they are in the middle of the job, and this has to be added to the final cost. Ensure that the company that you employ to clean your gutters and roof will give you an all-inclusive and itemised quote, like these gutter cleaners in Brisbane

To protect your biggest investment, your home, make sure that your regular maintenance includes your roof and gutters. Maybe they are not so easy to see, but it is extremely important that they are doing their job properly.

How to Perform Healthy Tree Pruning

Of course pruning must be done. And it must be done properly, to preserve the health of your plants. Whether decorative shrubs or shady trees, and everything in between, all need to be pruned. Even Jesus said that “every branch in me that does not bear fruit he takes away, and every branch that does bear fruit he prunes, that it may bear more fruit” (John 15:2). So there’s a good reason to get out your tools and do what needs to be done.

Plan ahead

Don’t prune without purpose. You want to achieve a desirable result at the end. You don’t want to reduce your plant to such an extent that it cannot regenerate itself. Is your goal to just tidy up and snip off the dead flower heads? Is your goal to increase your flower or fruit production? Do you have branches which seem to poke out here and there and spoil the balance?

Unless you are expert at this task, like these tree pruning Hobart experts, it is best to under-prune than to over-prune. Once you’ve reached a suitable stage of the job, stand back and assess. Then if necessary you can trim off a bit more, but you can’t replace what you’ve cut off. And remember that your tools must be sharp. Dirty, rusty tools are annoying to use, they don’t always open and close properly. Dull edges will tear the branch, looking ugly and causing hurt. Treat yourself to good quality pruners, which will give a quick, sharp cut.

The same goes for your loppers. If you intend to reach into high branches with your extendable lopper, you want a sharp, quick cut. Once again, however, don’t go hard when pruning a tree. You want to do minimal damage. Be careful about where on the branch you cut. Too close to the trunk causes problems, as does a stub cut too far away. Both can cause damage and decay, and ultimately death of the tree.

So when is the best time of year to prune? Definitely not in the growing season. Heavy pruning risks denuding the tree. The tree needs its leaves during this time. There may be low or no rainfall during hot weather, and a stressed tree will not cope with scarce water as well as a healthy tree.

When planting trees, you need to consider the location, and how big the tree will become, and whether it will fit into the particular area some years down the track. If a tree does not fit into the space allocated to it, it should be removed. This can cause problems, particularly if it is too close to the house, or the fence, or other structure. In this instance, you would do best to consider employing a tree removal specialist. For one thing, they have insurance! But they do know the right way and the wrong way to deal with the problem. This is an investment that will benefit your peace of mind. They would also be the ones to ask when a tree needs to be trimmed. The workers also remove the offcuts for mulching.

How Should We Properly Get Rid Of White Goods?

We’ve all heard the term ‘white goods’ before. We all have them in our house. So, before starting to explain how to best get rid of white goods, let’s first be sure we’re on the same page with the explanation of white goods are.

First off, white goods don’t have to be white. When they were first made, they were white, but these days they can be all kinds of fashionable colours. So don’t get caught up on the ‘white’ part of ‘white goods’.

White Goods are just those electrical products that are usually really large, heavy and bulky. So, think about your fridges, ovens, stoves, clothes dryers, air conditioners, washing machines.

Because of their size and bulk, these ‘white’ goods are often difficult to move, whether that be from room to room, or out of your house entirely. While white goods are usually built to last, they are not built to last forever. At some stage they will fail, and then you need to get rid of them, so that the next fridge or washing machine can take its place.

Often, due to their large size, we just move the appliance to some storage room, because we don’t want to deal with the effort of throwing them away. But they take up a lot of room, room that could and should be used for something else. And it’s not just about giving you back you space; these types of appliances can often be recycled into new products. When done correctly, recycling will ensure that the dangerous toxic materials used to make white goods will not seep into the soil and contaminate the environment.

You could always give your white goods to friends or family, or to charity … although, this gift or denotation will probably be better received if the appliance is still in good working condition. Don’t just pass off your dud and broken fridge to your mother just so she can worry about how to get rid of it. That’s just a bad move all round.

So How Do We Get Rid Of The White Goods?

The one defining statement about white goods is that they are bulky and heavy, so often you will not be able to easily carry it out of the house. But can you make it lighter by removing easy to remove parts.

Next, map out just how exactly you are going to get it out of your house. Are there narrow hallways? Are there steps? Plan out each move before you try and make it.

Make sure you have the right equipment. Equipment here could mean a couple of burly humans. Or a lifting trolley and some strapping to keep it in place.

Make Sure You Plan Everything And Don’t Rush

Take your time. Mistakes happen when we rush and cut corners. And when working with heavy appliances like refrigerators, mistakes and cut corners can equal injury and pain.

Make sure your path out of the house is clear of pets and little (or even big) humans.

And most importantly, make sure you can actually do it yourself with causing yourself injury. Don’t just tackle the job yourself because you want to save money. Paying the professionals, like these white goods removal Gold Coast experts, who have the equipment and experience to tackle such heavy lifting jobs, could be the best plan you make.

Should You Perform Pressure Cleaning Yourself?

So, you come home from work. The sun is shining brightly and you notice that your driveway is looking the worse for wear. There’s oil spots here, there and everywhere, and dirt has been tracked into the concrete cracks, mould and mildew are forming, and birds have done their business all over the place. It really needs a good clean.

Or perhaps your house is going up for sale, and you just need to get the exteriors looking bright and clean looking for all the prospective buyers you are sure are coming your way.

You know this clean needs more than a hose, so you think about going down to the local hardware store and renting or buying a pressure cleaning jet. I mean, how hard could it be: surely, you just point the jet at the dirty bits, press the trigger and let the water do the rest. It can’t be that difficult, can it?

Well, that’s what we’re going to try and find out, with our Pro and Con list for doing pressure cleaning yourself.

DIY PRO

Obviously, one pro in favour of the DIY method is that it’ll be cheaper than hiring professionals. There is the cost of renting a decent power cleaner, but that shouldn’t be too much of an issue, particularly if the job is fairly small.

DIY AGAINST.

However, for larger jobs, the cost savings of doing the job yourself might be eaten into by the effort required to power clean the area. A concrete driveway is a large job, and will require of you a great deal of effort, but even that job is easy compared to the exterior of your home. There’ll be areas where you will find it very difficult to reach with a power water jet from the ground.

Of course, you could then think about climbing a ladder and getting closer, but that’s just another tick in the AGAINST column. Working from ladders, particularly when you are lugging heavy equipment, is dangerous if you don’t know what you are doing. Particularly since the equipment itself exerts a lot of pressure and may knock your centre of balance out of whack.

Also, the power cleaner itself can be a very dangerous thing. If you can find a power washer that is actually strong enough (and that can be a big if in and of itself), the pressures being exerted on the water is huge … enough that it can cause you serious injuries if fingers or toes happen to get in the way.

THE PROFESSIONALS – PRO

Professionals know what they are doing. For one, they know that sometimes high pressure power cleaning may NOT be what you should be using to clean your surface. Some surfaces, like painted wood, will get damaged from the high pressures of the water jet, and require a different type of low pressure chemical cleaning.

A second reason is that professionals have professional grade equipment. The equipment you might rent from the local hardware store, might not do a good enough job against tough stains.

THE PROFESSIONALS – AGAINST

Clearly, with professionals, you have to pay them. It’s kind of the law. So how do you know that the company you are bringing in are worth the money that you will pay them? Often we gravitate towards the cheap end of the spectrum when accepting quotes from professionals, but there may just be a reason why they are so cheap. You really need to perform some research to find the right professional driveway pressure cleaners for your job. Check out the reviews other people have written about them.