Roof Maintenance Done Today Saves Trouble Later Many of us experienced damage caused by last winter’s ice dams.
Were you concerned about snow and ice buildup on your roof? With the warm weather, this could be the last thing you may be thinking about. However, being prepared for the those nasty cold surprises and taking care of the preventative roof maintenance when it’s warm is a better alternative than having to make an emergency repair outside during cold or extreme weather. So on a warm and dry day, run through the following checklist to make sure your roof remains in good shape throughout the year:
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* Clear gutters of dust and debris. Twigs and other debris will often settle on your roof and then get washed into your gutters. Clearing your gutters at the beginning of the warm season can help to ensure that water won’t collect in them. Allowing gutters to clog and overflow could possibly cause water damage, put undue stress on your gutters and create potential ice dams. * Install roof and gutter de-icing cables. These specially designed electric heating cables help protect your property by efficiently reducing ice formation along roof edges, in gutters, drains and downspouts. When properly installed, these products create a path for the melt water from ice or snow to drain off the roof. Installing de-icing cables during the warmer months can keep you from having to deal with ice dams in the winter.
For additional information you can contact a heating cable manufacturer, such as EasyHeat Roof and Gutter De-Icing Cables.
Impr Homeovement Plenty of tender, loving care went into those
vegetable seedlings planted this spring. Weeks of watering, weeding, pruning and feeding have likely resulted in a harvest so bountiful, it is begin- ning to overwhelm the kitchen. What an exciting sight to have watched that seedling grow with sunshine, water and good soil in the backyard garden or patio container garden to produce such a plethora of fresh vegetables. By harvest time, tomatoes, peppers, zucchini and cucumbers weigh down the vines and stems of the formerly tiny seedlings, and many gardeners are running out of storage space and recipe ideas for all the incredible vegetables picked at the height of freshness.
* Inspect the places where your gutters are joined to the roof to make sure they are securely attached. Inspect your roof for mosses or other vegetation that may be growing on your shingles.
After sweeping off debris or vegetation, it is recommended to apply a special removal solution (approved for use on your roof), or call a pro- fessional service to clear the roof. * Another way to minimize ice dams is to inspect your attic space to make sure it is properly insulated and ventilated. Improperly insulated attics can cause hot air to collect at the top of your home during the winter, heating the roof and causing snow to melt and ice to form.
Properly insulating your attic can also help you save on heating and cooling costs, accord- ing to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. It may be advised to consult with a local professional service on this type of work if you aren’t familiar with insulation and ventila- tion systems. Once you’ve gone through your roof maintenance checklist, you can rest easy that you
won’t have to get out the ladder to fix a problem and your roof is protected against the frosty weather. For more information on roof and gutter de-icing and how to prevent ice dams, visit www.easyheat.com
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So what can be done with the garden leftovers? Donating and gifting are two great ways to help friends and the community with fresh produce. Miracle-Gro and America’s Test Kitchen teamed up to provide recipes that are perfect for parties, providing a delicious meal for a shut-in and shar- ing with co-workers. Tomatoes from the garden can be canned and easily transformed into chili, spaghetti or pizza sauce even into the winter months. From salsa and pico de gallo, to zucchini bread and cucumber salad, these popular foods will have family and friends enthusiastically eating garden vegetables all summer long. Expand the menu options by growing some different vegetables or herbs each year, and investigate new reci- pes that may become family favorites.
Create gift baskets for friends and neighbors with excess fresh produce. Whether cel- ebrating the summer holidays, birthdays, anniversaries, or for no reason at all, summer crops can inspire a variety of gifts. Ask your friends for their favor- ite recipes featuring delicious vegetables and herbs. Then, print out the best recipes on colorful cardstock and bundle
up the ingredients, including fresh produce from the garden, giving the whole package as a gift. Who wouldn’t be overjoyed to receive a fabulous gourmet meal in the making?
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Donate any extra harvest to a local food shelter where it will benefit members of the commu- nity. Contact local food pantries prior to harvesting the vegeta- bles to find out what restrictions they might have on garden veg-
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etables. If the local food pantry does not accept fresh produce, contact area churches to see if any have a food donation program established. While the first harvest is exciting, do not forget to continue nurturing remaining plants in the gar- den. Some plants will produce vegetables until the weather gets considerably cooler, allowing for the enjoyment of fresh produce well into the fall. En- sure that plants have enough water, and continue pulling weeds competing with vegetable plants for water and nutrients.
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