In the course of our lives, we hear many things from many places. Some of the things we hear come from so many sources that we believe them to be one hundred percent factual. Among all of these things we hear are about our homes and since our homes are one of the most important assets most of us have, it pays to know which of those are true, and which are just plain wrong.
One common misconception in the housing world is about stone counter tops. While these are a great investment and are some of the best counter tops on the market, they still have their flaws. Some people seem to believe that their stone counter tops are completely indestructible-- cause, come on, it’s a rock. Stone is one of the strongest materials in the market right now for counter tops, but contrary to the belief, they can be broken. Obviously, with enough force, the stone can break. Cracking nuts, working on a hardware project or any other strike can potentially shatter the counter. Heat is another issue. The stone is great because it is heat resistant; although, it is, but only partially. If you put too hot of a pot on the counter or continually use the same spot, there is a possibility of it cracking from all the contraction and expansion. Be careful with your counter tops, no matter the material.
Another myth is that ceiling fans just have an on and off switch. The blades can actually spin both directions for different types of circulation. One for summer and one for winter. When you change the blades to blow air down, you have it set for summer. This type of rotation will help to pull cold air down and push it down into the room. The other direction will suck air up and help the hot and cold air mix better. The switch is usually near where the motor meets the blades.
Thermostats are a commonly misunderstood machine. It has been said that if you set your thermostat-- or car heater for that matter-- higher or cooler than your desired temperature, it will heat or cool faster. This is false. Most machines will work the same speed no matter what temperature you have it set at. So, next time you are hot and run inside, don’t set it down to fifty-five when you really want it at seventy.
Smoke detectors are a big problem in some areas. It’s been said that you should test the button every six months or year or something like that, by merely holding down the button. This is a problem because, that just tells you that the alarm works and that is only half the battle, you also need to make sure that the detector itself is working. This can be done by putting a few matches or candles under the alarm and blowing them out. If your smoke detector sounds, then you know it is working. Be safe in your own home. In her article “34 Home Maintenance Myths” Elizabeth Gehrman says that, “Smoke detectors are installed in 58 percent of homes that have fatal fires, but they are working in only 37 percent of those fires.” Don’t be one of the thirty seven percent, check your detectors regularly and replace the batteries too.
Something that not just homeowners, but really everyone should know is that when your appliance or other electronic device is off it still is sucking electricity. So, when you are asleep or out of town, your electronics are really just greedy vampires taking as much electricity as they possibly can. There are several reasons why this happens, but to fix it you can plug everything into a power strip or surge protector. This allows you to actually stop the current going into your electronics by just turning the power strip or surge protector off. (Surge protectors are probably a better option because they will keep your electronics from being fried when there is a power surge from a lighting strike or something.) But the most foolproof method of making sure that your vampiric electronics don’t drink all your electricity is to just unplug them when you are not using them. That’s the easiest way.
These tips are great and can help you save money. When you are buying a home or still happily living in one, remember to have the correct ideas about home maintenance. If you want to learn more, or to learn about what kind of houses are available in Idaho, check out: startpackingidaho.com.