Archive for November, 2015

postheadericon Venting Requirements for Gas Stoves

The UK Goverment recommends that all household gas cooking and heating stoves like the at be vented to the outdoors, even if local building codes allow gas stove installations without exterior venting. The EPA says cooking releases greasy vapors, smoke, odors, excess moisture and combustion by products that can create indoor air quality problems unless they are vented to the outdoors. The most popular venting option is a range hood.

Air Capacity

The typical 30-inch, four-burner household gas cooking stove puts out roughly 40,000 British thermal units of energy when all burners are on. As a general rule I recommend that a vent hood should exhaust 100 cubic feet of air per minute for each 10,000 Btu of stove energy. That means a vent hood for a typical kitchen stove should exhaust about 400 cubit feet of air per minute. Most kitchen ranges made in recent years have labeling stating the Btu output per burner. If your stove puts out more or less than the average Btu, let your stove’s actual rating be your venting capacity guide.

Wall Units

Range hoods come in several different styles to accommodate different kitchen layouts. An under-cabinet mount is fixed to the bottom of an above-stove cabinet, with ducting either directly out the back through the exterior wall or up through the cabinets to reach an exterior wall. This type typically has an internal blower. Wall-mounted hoods are attached directly to the wall with ducting either out the back, straight up or up and out. This type may have an internal blower or a blower at the exterior end of the duct.

Other Styles

A ceiling-mounted hood hangs over a cooktop in an island or peninsula, with ducting going straight up then out to an exterior blower in the wall. An alternative arrangement for cooktops in islands and peninsulas is a downdraft ventilator that sucks cooking fumes downward through the floor into the basement and out. These units may have their inlets alongside or behind the stove. Downdraft vents may have their blower in the cabinet beneath the cooktop or down in the basement.


A range hood should be installed between 24 inches and 30 inches above your stove top. If you go to 30 inches, you may have to install a more powerful blower. Wall or cabinet-mounted hoods should be around 24 inches deep. Ducting should be at least 6 inches in diameter if round or 3.25 x 10 inches if rectangular. If you have no way to vent your range hood to the outside, you can use a ductless hood. These above-the-stove units have an internal blower that draws cooking fumes through filters that trap grease and odors and returns the cleaned air to the kitchen. Depending on how much cooking you do, you may need to replace the filters every two to six months.

postheadericon Decorative Ideas of Hanging TVs Over Fireplaces

Article from

Any picture or portrait you hang over your fireplace automatically becomes the focal design point of the room. If you have a flat screen plasma television, you may want to hang it over the fireplace in lieu of a painting for a cozy modern effect. While your TV can be used as a high tech decoration, you might still want to keep it close to eye level if the television’s primary purpose is for viewing rather than decor. However, you can get creative with how you use your TV as a decoration.

Picture Frame

Design or purchase a thick sturdy picture frame that matches the decor of your living room, and affix it to the edges of your television. When you are not watching your TV, choose a family portrait or upload a picture of a favourite work of art to display on the screen. The TV will look like a virtual painting framed over your fireplace and it gives a more peaceful atmosphere than having the screen continuously flicking.


You favourite family portraits are well-loved items to hang over the mantel, but sometimes choosing just one is difficult. Instead, create a slideshow with as many pictures of your family as you’d like. Set the length of time for picture-to-picture transition to 30 seconds or more as a fast-moving slideshow over your fireplace can be distracting. Set your TV to play the slideshow as the wallpaper.


For homes with a modern, edgy look, this idea is quite impressive. Take a high quality digital picture of your room from the viewpoint of the mantel. Upload the picture to your television, and set the picture to serve as the wallpaper, which will give the effect that the television (particularly if it is in a frame) is actually a mirror.

postheadericon Detoxify the Bedroom With an Organic Mattress

Your Bed Could Be the Most Toxic Place You’ll Be Today

The dangerous toxic gases released from a conventional mattress make it one of the most significant sources of home pollution, implicated in sleep and health disorders, according to an expert from

With increasing pressure from environmental organizations and savvy consumers, manufacturers are starting to respond with an increasing number of organic mattresses and organic mattress pads and toppers being more available and affordable. It is especially important for new parents to consider purchasing an organic crib mattress over a conventional mattress for the health of the new baby.

Why an Organic Mattress is the Superior Alternative

Most adults spend at least a third of our lives in bed, infants and children even more, snuggling into what we believe to be a clean, safe place for a peaceful night’s repose. Unbeknownst to most, during those hours our bodies are being invaded by toxic chemicals absorbed through the skin and breathed into the lungs when we sleep on conventional mattresses with conventional bedding and pillows. The bedroom is one of the most toxic locations we will encounter on an average day.

Conventional mattresses in the United States are created from petroleum-based polyurethane foam before being fairly soaked in fire retardants, stabilizers, antimicrobial additives, surfactants, and chemical dyes. These chemicals off-gas from the mattress for the duration of its life, being inhaled and absorbed into the body. Many of these chemicals, regularly found in human blood samples in significant levels, have been associated with such health problems as impaired lung function, chronic bronchitis, allergic reactions, nausea and vomiting. Others have been implicated as cancer and reproductive toxins. This chemical stew can be the cause of insomnia and other sleep disorders.

According to Walter Bader, in his book Toxic Bedrooms: Your Guide to a Safe Night’s Sleep, an average conventional mattress contains more toxic chemicals than those found in a 50 gallon drum of oil. Two of the PBDE flame retardant compounds used in conventional mattresses have already been banned in Europe. They have been shown to be carcinogenic, and cause neurological damage, accumulating in the human body and passing through the placenta to fetuses, suspected in developmental disorders. They have also been implicated in SIDS. These chemicals are not regulated in the United States whose residents, not coincidentally, show the highest human exposure and accumulation of PBDEs.

Organic Latex Mattresses

Organic latex mattresses are made from natural rubber rather than petrochemicals like synthetic latex and memory foam. Organic latex mattresses “breathe,” offering a cooler sleep surface that regulates moisture naturally, for a more restful, uninterrupted sleep. They also offer 30% more pressure relief than memory foam for better spine alignment and comfort. Natural rubber is naturally antibacterial, resistant to mold and mildew, and repellant to dust mites that are the primary trigger of asthma attacks.

Though the price tags on organic latex mattresses are higher than conventional mattresses, they are a better value, not only in health, comfort, and superior sleep, but in durability. Many organic latex mattresses last as long as 30 years, compared to a maximum 10 years for conventional mattresses that contain synthetic foams that pack down or break down.

Organic Cotton Mattresses

Organic cotton mattresses are non-toxic, with no synthetic chemicals used from crop through to completion, making them a superior choice both for the home and global environments. They are the natural alternative to petrochemical-based batting that is used in conventional mattresses, without the addition of flame retardants, fabric sizing, stain or water repellents.

Organic cotton mattresses are more durable than synthetics, making them a better long-term value while offering a more restful, rejuvenating sleep. They control humidity next to the skin and provide a more even temperature to ventilate body heat.

When it comes time to replace a mattress, investing in an organic mattress is a wise choice for your health, a better night’s sleep, and a longer lasting mattress. Organic baby mattresses should be the choice for all parents to eliminate dangerous toxins from their infant’s nurseries. Topping the organic mattress with organic bedding and pillows as well will transform a toxic bedroom into the clean, safe, and relaxing haven it should be.

postheadericon Memory Foam Mattress Pad Buying Guide

A memory foam mattress pad is cheaper than the mattress and it can revive it for many more years to come. I recently bought a topper for my new mattress as I was told it would prolong the lifetime of the mattress for up to 10 years!

Such a pad can be bought for under $200 and it comes in a really good quality. Of course, depending on the place where it is bought, the price range might vary. A memory foam mattress pad is made of a thin layer of foam. This is placed on the sagging mattress and when the individual is sleeping on it, there is a very comfortable feeling that is experienced.

The Way the Mattress Pad Works

The mattress pad is made of foam containing literally thousands of tiny foam cells that are heat and pressure reactive. A person lying down on the pad will feel the foam really soft and comfortable because the foam absorbs the body heat and as a result it softens up. The body weight presses down the body into the foam, which will practically conform to the body shape right away. This is why the mattress pad foam gives such a great support for the body.

With this pad the person doesn’t feel any pressure points, thus there will be no joint and back pains felt during the night. Also lack of sleep is eliminated because there is no longer tossing and turning during the night. One can now really sleep comfortably throughout the whole night.

When the decision to buy a mattress pad made of memory foam has been made, one should check out the mattress density, which means the number of pounds per square foot of pad. The lower the density, the more cushioning and support it will give the individual. The higher the density, the more firm the mattress will become. So basically this number explains how comfortable and convenient the pad will be under the body weight during the night.

When to Avoid Using a Memory Foam Mattress Pad

It is not recommended using this pad if a person weights over two hundred fifty pounds. The reason is because the weight stresses the foam and creates additional wear and tear to the pad. In this case a latex mattress pad is mostly recommended. It is, granted, more expensive to use a latex mattress pad instead of memory topper, however for the sake of keeping the pad healthy along with having a good night’s sleep, it is really worth buying one.

postheadericon Senior Golden Years Living

Have you ever been looking for a place to live, your next apartment or something to live at and you find yourself looking at a senior living home? It does not matter what age you are, you may have come across this over the course of your life. You are searching and next thing you know you are looking at a retirement community and you may not have known it until you were knee deep in the amenities, and loving what you were seeing. Have you been there? Have you done that? The price range was even right for you and you ended up looking there. It probably did not even seem like a retirement community when you clicked on the link, you had no idea until somewhere it said 55 and older, or something to that extent. With the senior independent living retirement community in Mount Dora FL this is what is happening to people. It does not come across as a senior care center, but it is. Seniors can live independently too, and there is no need to rush them into a situation like that where they would need to be forced into something. When they are ready to maybe downsize from their large home, or are reaching the retirement age, that is when it is time to consider the downsizing and the big move.

It is for the benefit of the seniors, absolutely. Moving can be stressful, but when it is done for the right reasons, the right goals in mind, for the better of everyone involved in the long run, then it is all well and good. Call it growing pains, for they are necessary and yet painful at the same time. Retirement is supposed to be your golden years; the years that you get to sit back a bit and enjoy life. If you are retired or you are maybe just working at a hobby level, part time job that you enjoy, that can be your purpose to get up in the morning and have something to do. When you have purpose and ambition for something like that, you will be happier and enjoying life more so than not. Do consider it. Think about how you want to spend your golden years and what you enjoy doing, where you see yourself living, and who you want to be spending time with.

postheadericon Retire Well

Oh, that lovely time in life we all refer to as retirement. How lovely it is. How lovely it can be for those who do not yet know about it. You are able to do more of what you want, spend your time how you want, and you can choose who you spend your time with. Retirement is when you get to put your feet up from your hard working life, and you get to reap some of the rewards. It is time to kick back a bit, and focus more on your family life, hobbies, interests, and even your health. Many times folks get wrapped up in their careers so much that they are not able to take care of themselves so much. When you stop and smell the roses you get a bit more out of life, you get to come back to your sense so to speak.

Now where you stop and put your feet up matters too. You do not want to retire someplace where you do not feel at home, where you cannot be yourself, where you do not want to be. You want to be living some place where you are welcomed and treated well. If you need some taking care of, then do make sure you are set up that way as well. Tampa Bay retirement communities provide an engaging environment while also having independent choices. When you need custom care, which most do, then you can receive it here. If you need assistance with something you can ask and receive it. If you are living fully independently and like to do your own thing, that is always an option as well. Having a place that meets your needs and also is flexible to work with you is something special. Take advantage of a place like that and get on the waiting list if there is one started. If not get your foot in the door and inquire on it now even before you hit retirement age.

So what are you to do? You should be aiming to retire well. Take care of yourself now, so that you can better and further take care of yourself later on in life. What you do now, how you eat what you do for exercise, it all adds up and you will be on your way to living a more fulfilled, healthy life.

postheadericon Insulatinga Loft with Hardwood Floors

If your loft has hardwood floors and you want to insulate it, all hope is not lost. Luckily, there is a way to insulate without removing the entire floor. If you are planning on insulating your loft, know about the materials and techniques available for a successful project completion.

Cellulose and Foam

Remove a few boards from the floor of your loft and install cellulose — shredded newspaper — or sprayed foam — polyurethane — insulation. Remove only one board over each floor cavity and spray in the insulation. You can find the centre of each floor cavity — area between floor joists — by measuring 2 inches off one wall, and then every 16 inches should be the centre of the cavity. The hardwood will run perpendicular to the floor joists, so begin at the wall on either side of the room that stands at the end of the hardwood and not on the sides of the hardwood; the direction of the grain will also help you determine which wall to measure from. Wood grain runs the length of hardwood, so begin at the end of the hardwood lengthwise.

Remove the hardwood strip using a plunge router and a carving bit. Stay away from the surrounding hardwood. When replacing the hardwood, cut the tongue off of the replacement strip, seat the hardwood directly into the slot, and insert finish nails by predrilling and setting with a nail set.

Insulating the Ceiling

If you plan on using the loft space, avoid tearing up the floor by insulating the ceiling framing in your loft. Insert batt insulation into the ceiling rafters and fasten using a stapler. Wear long sleeves, eye goggles and a dust mask. Batt insulation can be purchased in widths of 16 and 24 inches, but you will probably need 24-inch-wide batt insulation for the ceiling rafters. Measure your rafter widths. If they are 5.5 inches wide, you will need R-19 insulation — insulating value; 2-by-8 rafters and up will require R-30 insulation.

Not sure if you do this? Call in the experts from – they cover all the Greater London area.

postheadericon Loft Exhaust Fan Installation

Article supplied by London loft conversion specialists:

Loft exhaust fans are available in two types: gable-end and roof-mounted. A gable-end fan is installed inside the loft, with a louvered opening to the outside. A roof-mounted loft fan is positioned near the top of the roof, under an aluminium mushroom cap that protects the fan from the elements. Adjustable thermostats on the fans control both kinds. The temperature in the loft causes the thermostat to turn the fan on and off to remove hot air from the loft.

First you will need to select a roof-mounted exhaust fan recommended for the cubic footage of the loft. The fan should be adequate to efficiently pull out hot air. It may be necessary to install two or three roof-mounted exhaust fans. Two fans running intermittently is more energy efficient than one fan running nonstop.

Next you have to determine where on the roof the fan will be installed. Hot air rises to the peak of the loft ceiling. The higher on the roof and the closer to the ridge, the better.

It is important to verify that the manufacturer’s specifications for the circuit breaker size are met; a 20-amp breaker and No. 12 wire is standard. Run power from the home’s electric service panel to the location where the roof-mounted exhaust fan will be installed. The fan installation will include a hot wire, a ground wire and a neutral wire, connected to the service panel and circuit breaker and to the fan.

Using a reciprocating saw or a power saw, cut a vent hole in the roof where the exhaust fan will be located. A hole measuring 12 inches square is standard.

Once the hole is made, nail the mushroom cap with roofing nails, tucking the cap under the head shingles. Follow any diagram accompanying the exhaust fan assembly for flashing specifications. Apply roofing tar to seal the mushroom cap valance.

Mount the exhaust fan assembly, working from inside the loft, using the brackets and screws provided by the manufacturer.

Turn off the electricity to the exhaust fan at the circuit breaker. Wire electrical connections to the thermostat; twist the wires to connect neutral to neutral, hot to hot and ground to ground wires. Screw on wire nuts and wrap with electric tape. Do not allow the electric feed to hang; apply supports following local building codes.