10 Apr

Indoor Plants: How They Help Us at Home And Work

An idea that’s being planted in increasingly more offices and homes is one that might surprise many individuals: specifically, the advantages of indoor plants. Simply put, being close to plants decreases tension.

Research study has actually shown that heart rate, blood pressure and skin conductivity all benefit from the presence of plants which individuals in planted workplaces recover from tension quicker than those in unplanted offices.

The effect is likely to be most substantial in circumstances where the jobs being carried out are repeated or not needing high levels of concentration.

Studies show that by lowering tension and enhancing listening, plants can improve work environment efficiency.

A variety of studies likewise show that plants can reduce the incidence of small health problems in the working environment. For example, in one Norwegian research study, after plants were installed in the trial workplaces, personnel problems about:

  • Fatigue were lowered by 30 percent
  • Headaches were minimised by 25 percent
  • Dry throats were lowered by 30 percent
  • Coughing were decreased by 40 percent
  • Skin irritation were minimised by 25 percent.

Plants are also thought to have such a remarkable result because they both improve indoor air quality and individuals’s perception of the building.

Today, horticultural treatment flowers as an occupation and a practice. The American Horticultural Therapy Association reports that “horticultural therapy is not only an emerging profession; it is a time-proven practice.” Supporting and taking care of plants is an extremely interactive and satisfying experience for individuals of any age, particularly for senior citizens.

As a way of returning to the senior neighbourhood while shining a spotlight on the healing advantages of looking after plants, Initial Tropical Plants, the biggest service provider of interior landscaping and style setup to services in the country, created the Grassroots Senior Healing program. The business donates plants, containers and gifted horticultural workers to volunteer at low-income homes and show the healing benefits of tending to household plants.

Remarkably, planted buildings likewise have less airborne dust than unplanted ones. The impact is generally due to increased humidity and fixed electrical energy. That’s due to the fact that plants are somewhat negatively charged compared with their surroundings and so will bring in favourably charged dust particles, decreasing the number in the air and on surrounding surface areas.

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08 Apr

How to Maximise Comfort and Lower Your Utility Bills

If you think summer seasons have been getting hotter in recent years, you may be. In fact, according to the National Climatic Data Centre, 2005 was the warmest year since nationwide records started in 1895. Combine those rising temperatures with increasing energy expenses to cool your house, and the circumstance can be downright intolerable.

How can I decrease my energy bills?

With the average house owner spending so much on energy-about half of it for heating and cooling-the cost of keeping one’s cool can be costly. To enhance your house’s energy effectiveness and lower energy costs, perform a simple home energy audit. Start by taking a look at outside walls, doors, and windows to determine any fractures where cool air could be seeping out, and seal leakages with caulk or weather stripping. Keep window blinds closed throughout the day to obstruct sunlight from going into the house and plant trees around your home for included shade.

In addition, check your attic’s insulation. If it’s inadequate, the home’s cooling system might have to work more difficult to manage the indoor temperature level. Add more if there currently is less than five inches.

Be sure to set up a consultation with a home cooling professional to check and clean your air conditioner to ensure it’s working as effectively as possible. You may likewise wish to set up a programmable thermostat that will instantly change the indoor temperature level while you’re away, which likewise can help reduce your energy expense.

My house feels sticky and in some cases smells mouldy. What can I do about it?

Even when the temperature level is right, your home might still feel sticky due to excessive humidity, and that can affect your general convenience and well-being. In fact, excessive wetness can result in the growth of mould and mildew, which can potentially trigger health issues.

If there is a wetness issue, it’s crucial to check your house for any water leakages, and take proper procedures to correct the problem. You also might wish to consider purchasing a dehumidifier, which can substantially minimise the moisture in your house.

My a/c is about 20 years old and I’m afraid it’s on its last leg. What should I try to find when buying a brand-new system?

The average life expectancy of a quality central air conditioner has to do with 15 to 20 years, so it’s wise to be thinking of replacement. Preparation ahead gives you time to conduct research study and pick the ideal system based upon your specific needs.

One of the most crucial things to think about when shopping for a brand-new system is the seasonal energy efficiency ranking (SEER). While the national minimum SEER score is 13, many more recent models have a SEER of 15 and higher, which will help make your home more energy efficient.

Lastly, do not put a price tag on convenience. Purchase a system that is priced within your budget plan, however don’t jeopardise your comfort, home energy effectiveness or long-term savings by buying an unit that will not satisfy your requirements well into the future.

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27 Dec

Can you Install French Doors Upstairs?

If you own an upper-floor flat or just want to brighten the 2nd or 3rd floor of your house, you may wish that you could install French doors. The large glass doors are an outstanding way to let natural light flood in and open up your space wonderfully. But French doors on an upper flooring would be dangerous or impractical, ideal? Well, no, actually! There are numerous ways in which you can include a touch of European charm and beauty to your upstairs bedrooms or living spaces with beautiful French doors. Here are just some suggestions for doing so.


Play it safe with a Juliet Balcony


A simple way for homeowners to securely implement French doors on their upper floorings is to also set up Juliet Balcony. These are false balconies that, from the front of the home, give the appearance of a veranda, but, really, are simply bars or glass sheets that run across the lower half of the window opening. Juliet balconies guarantee that, if your French doors are open, there is no risk of falling. As being an excellent choice for the house generally, this can also give you peace of mind that any little kids in your house are well-protected. With Juliet Balconies, your French doors will need to open inwardly, instead of many versions that open outwardly. This can easily be arranged with a professional glazing installer.


Create a Balcony Area


If you are up for a more extensive restoration project, then a stunning method to implement French doors into the upper levels of your house is to develop a balcony location (a genuine veranda this time!). Your French doors must have sufficient area to open outwardly, and you might use the space for a chill-out area with a table and chairs, or a mini garden with great deals of little pots– whatever you expensive! One thing to be aware of is that you will need to get planning approval from the local authorities to build a balcony. If you reside in a conservation area or your home is a period property, then you may be faced with extra restrictions.

With timeless French windows in place, your upper floors will be flooded with natural light.

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25 Dec

Is the Onset of Winter Depressing You? Install Larger Windows in Your Home

A few of us can find the winter a little bleak, with the dull weather conditions impacting our mood. We may wind up longing for just a bit of sun to cheer ourselves up. If a home is dark and feels confined due to small windows, then this can make us feel even worse – especially if we need to depend on synthetic lighting. Installing large double-glazed windows in your house is an ideal method to illuminate those dark cold weather and beat the winter blues once and for all!


Get as much light as you can


Natural light is vital for a healthy mind and body all year round. In winter season, it is essential to sit near windows as much as possible to get the advantages of natural sunshine. By setting up large windows in your house, you can increase the quantity of light that is able to flow in. Huge windows also let the sun come in for longer during the day, as the circulation of light is not restricted by small frames. This implies that your home will be brighter for longer during the winter season, minimising the amount you need to utilise artificial lighting and enhancing your state of mind.


Enjoy More Natural Warmth


By allowing more natural sunlight, big windows also enable the home to gain from the sun’s heat. This solar gain can mean that, at certain times of the day, you don’t have to rely on main heating. If you update to large double-glazed windows in fall, then you will benefit from the increased energy-efficiency of the brand-new windows. Your windows will have an energy rating of at least C (the minimum needed by the Building Regulations), making your home feel great and cosy.


Save money on your bills


There’s no much better way to beat the winter blues than to conserve a little bit of money! You could reduce your energy expenses if you update your windows this fall – although they are larger, they will still be just as energy-efficient as other double glazing options. You could even opt for windows with an A ranking, which will make your house more energy-efficient.

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19 Dec

Incorporating Stained Glass in Your Home

For many people, the words ‘stained glass’ most likely invoke pictures of intense, stunning church windows– with stunning, elaborately developed images casting their kaleidoscopic colours onto the floor below. However stained glass also has a rich history in regards to domestic architecture, and can be discovered in various durations and designs of house. It can be an ideal choice for improving your property’s personal privacy, allowing natural light and illuminating the home with a splash of colour.


If you want to include stained glass into your house’s style, there are plenty of choices available – finding the best one is almost understanding what effect you ‘d like to attain and which duration or style you ‘d like to emulate, if any.


Select a period or design to recreate


Late Victorian residential or commercial properties that are affected by Art Nouveau often include stained glass on front doors and decks, typically including the ‘Glasgow Rose’– a stylised flower design integrating straight geometric lines. The Edwardian duration likewise had a rose as the focal point of its stained glass designs, but by this time it was the


Art Deco rose that included on individuals’s front doors. During the 1930s, styles altered, and stained glass ended up being about geometric lead work and strong colours, typically on wavy or rippled glass – with popular styles consisting of a brilliant increasing sun and a Tudor galleon sailing across stormy waters. Nowadays, there are lots of more modern designs out there, though the period styles are still readily offered for property owners who want to maintain a more conventional feel.


Choose where you want the stained glass


The sky’s the limit when it concerns where you wish to put your stained glass. You might choose to utilise it on your internal windows to include a little bit of colour to corridors and stairwells. Or, you could consider simply having actually stained glass on the leading sash of your external windows, as a gorgeous feature of your home or kitchen area. Stained glass is commonly used in front doors, in place of solid wood panels, or for sidelights (narrow windows beside the door). Generally, stained glass can be featured anywhere that standard panes or wood panels would typically be. Whether you wish to follow a traditional style or experiment with ideas to create a stained glass function that is truly special, there are numerous alternatives readily available.

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31 Jul

Double Glazing Explained and the Benefits

Double glazing is more regularly than not the very first option to consider for enhancing the power performance of windows within an older building. As windows tend to be a foremost supply of oxygen infiltration draught-prevention applying seals is among the best methods for improving convenience and limiting energy-use, with little if any change to some buildings take a look at minimal price.

However, secondary glazing can provide you a significantly greater thermal efficiency than draught-prevention alone. It might even be selected where adding draught-prevention seals towards the windows is particularly challenging.

Likewise, several steel-framed windows have spaces which are too large to seal.

Windows with leaded lights might permit air infiltration round the guide which may be resolved using the aid of secondary glazing.

Based upon the buildings use, area and also the residents’ convenience needs additional benefits and advantages of secondary glazing, for example noise reduction, might have a bearing about the style and design answer.

If extra glazing may be the chosen answer, then your external windows are better left without draught-prevention to ensure that there surely is some ventilation towards the air-space separating the external windows and also the extra glazing to prevent the develop of condensation.

Lead Paint

Guide offers could be bad for health, particularly children.

Lead-based paints tend to be available on older buildings. Often these offers have now been over-coloured. When there is any doubt concerning the lifetime of lead paint on windows which are likely to be removed, it should be thought that lead paint exists and precautions taken accordingly.

Using lead offers currently has been usually barred as a result of the risk to health. That said, there’s an exemption towards the bar that allows them to become utilized on Quality I and Quality II* listed properties. On these buildings the standard look of the lead paint, as well as its endurance and its own fungicidal and insecticidal qualities, imply that it’s frequently still employed. It will just be reproduced by competent designers using correct protective gear, which is not recommended to be used where it might be within the reach of children.

The advantages of secondary glazing

Even though primary reason for secondary glazing products in older structures would be to enhance the thermal capacity for windows by draught-prevention in addition to lowering the passing of warmth through glass, secondary glazing can offer numerous additional benefits.

Thermal Benefits

Temperature damage from the space using a screen within the heat weeks are complicated as three main components have been in play:

*by convection and passing, in the warmer area air-to the cooler of the glass and the body

*by the cold floor of the screen taking in infra-red light in the space

*by uncontrolled air leakage, which could also generate cold-air in the exterior areas or consider heated air out of the inside; known as oxygen infiltration, this could happen even if the screen is closed.

Heat loss through the glass and structures

It generally does not matter if it leaves the area by convection, conduction or light, the missing warmth all experiences the glass as well as the body as passing. The glass is basically one of the most conductive part of the screen but warmth is usually dropped over the body though in a reduced price.

Simple glazing is just a bad power insulator and easily conducts heat. An average 4mm thick glass includes an archetypal u value of 5.4W/m2K. The thermal reduction via a single-glazed screen is determined by the entire section of glass, the conductance of the body content and also the quality of installing the body and double glazing products. An average price of the wood framed single-glazed screen is 4.8W/m2K.

For thermal efficiency, the ideal airspace between panes is-16 – 20mm. A much better air-space allows convection currents to build up inside the emptiness and much more warmth to become shed. The placement of the extra device is usually based on the screen expose and certainly will usually just be installed far away around 100mm in the primary glazing. With that said, a substantial percentage of the thermal advantage of secondary glazing originates from decoupling the body in the primary wooden window-frame which may decrease the u value to roughly 2.5W/m2K.

The usage of low-emissivity glass for that extra glazing may further enhance the thermal performance to significantly less than 2.0/m2K. To keep this amount, it’s very important to maintain the conclusion clean – the conventional is ‘successfully’ clear.

Heat loss through air leakage

Temperature losses from the common traditional window are mainly through breaks round the screen. With larger windows the percentage of warmth drop by passing through the glass is commonly bigger. Because draughts, due to convection and air infiltration make people experience less comfortable, the folks within the space might arrive the heat, as well as run it for longer.

Bespoke secondary windows, with effective border sealing and wash or pressure seals about the beginning sections, produce a fruitful seal within the total of the mainframe of the primary screen and certainly will considerably moderate excessive draughts.

Just before starting on the procedure for draught-prevention, look at a fan pressurisation evaluation to discover the specific resources of oxygen transmission and decide which windows need interest because they may compare considerably within the quantity of draughts they let in.

Quantifying Draughtiness

The draughtiness of the building will be based upon the quantity of atmosphere that may go through its outside cover – surfaces, ground and roof covering. That is referred to whilst the oxygen permeability. The standard would be to state the permeability of the wall, top, or total framework cover taking a stress variation of fifty Pascals over the wall. The permeability is subsequently calculated whilst the quantity of atmosphere (in cubic yards) that’ll move within an hour via a square-metre of wall (or top, or ground) and indicated as m³/h/m² (m³/hm² or m/h) in a stress variation of fifty Pascals (50 Pa).

Although leaks within the structure is what produces draughtiness and ventilation, what’s more essential for the structure and its own residents may be the pace where atmosphere profits through the framework. That is most basically calculated whilst the quantity of occasions the atmosphere within the building changes each time (found as ac/h). This can rely on the stress difference between your exterior and also the within the building, and again the tradition would be to suppose a stress variation of fifty Pa.

The connection within both of these steps is distributed by the next formula:

Atmosphere modifications each hour = Permeability x exterior area of creating x Internal amount of construction

The transformation from oxygen changes each hour at 50 Pa to atmosphere changes per hours under standard circumstances (around 4 Pa) is also sophisticated to describe today. In one single creating a genuine 0.8 ac/r was equal to 14 ac/h (50Pa).

Noise Insulation

Windows are among the most vulnerable areas of a building to sound transmission because of their pretty lightweight design. With respect to the quantity of openings and also the quality of the seals between your opportunities, just one glazed screen without any seals might just accomplish a sound reduction of 18 – 25dBA. While shut, covered double-glazed products execute hardly much better than simple glazing since the 2 panes of glass are strictly associated with a minimal hole therefore the 2 panes resonate as you.

Another screen having an air-space of 10cm or even more de couples the motion of the two panes of glass and decreases the resonance between your two. Noise efficiency as high as 45dBA may usually be received.

Improved quantities of noise insulation are achieved whilst the space develops especially if the screen shows are actually covered having an audio content, though minimal improvements occur with cavities over 200mm. The usage of heavier or traditional laminate glass-within the extra screen also enhances the traditional abilities of the installation.

Protection from UV light

Ultraviolet (UV) lighting in the sunlight could potentially cause substantial harm to pictures, materials, decorating and other items. The usage of a movie, possibly in laminated glass within the extra glazing product or placed on like a film towards the main screen, may absorb ultraviolet lighting and decrease this threat of harm.

Solar gain

Windows may disclose considerable amounts of solar power resulting in overheating. Extra glazing could make this more severe when they reduce summer season ventilation. Although, middle-pane shades, glare films and summertime ventilation of the air-space may be used to make the area less warm.

Some extra glazing methods could be removed within the summertime.


All air contains some water vapour, but comfortable air holds more vapour than cold air. The moment comfortable, moistened air is cooled it’ll achieve a heat where it can’t hold-all the vapour, and also the water may reduce out. This heat is known as the dewpoint.

Hot moist air passing over a chilly area might be cooled locally below the dewpoint by which event humidity build up or condensation may occur. This result causes the accustomed condensation inside of cool windows. Condensation about the exterior screen may occur when the extra program is exposed for ventilation in coldweather particularly where areas are fairly damp.

These condensation risks are likely to be reduced where the extra glazing is both:

*able to be kept closed-in cold weather, since you will find alternate way of ventilation- older attributes generally have sufficient ventilation from other areas

*found where the standard path of ventilation is from external to inside, for instance about the windward side of the framework, about the lower surfaces or in which a chosen organic or physical removal solution helps you to assure inward airflow

*fitted with products which prevent slow ventilation in unwanted problems

*where the main and extra devices include some choice way of ventilating between your exterior and also the space inside but skipping the hole between your primary and secondary glazing

Historical buildings security

Another screen provides an additional buffer to accessibility and so may provide enhanced protection. This is often especially appropriate once the utilization of a historical building has been altered and an enhanced level of security and safety is needed. The secondary glazing can offer that extra protection while protecting the present windows.