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Hudson - Litchfield News | April 25, 2014 - 9 Nine Ways to Improve Curb Appeal

Homeowners who want their homes to make strong fi rst impressions must prioritize curb appeal. Homes with strong curb appeal sell well and can impart a welcoming feel to all visitors. Improving curb appeal need not be expensive, and the following are a handful of ways to improve the appearance of your home.

1. Install a bold-looking door in a vibrant color or one with a custom design. This helps the home stand out from other properties in the neighborhood. 2. Edge the driveway to create a distinct border between the driveway and the lawn or other landscaping features. This helps homes appear neat and well kept. 3. Use outdoor lighting to make a home more inviting. Outdoor lighting also makes properties safer to traverse at night.

4. Clean a home’s exterior to

remove mildew or discolorations from the siding, driveway, patio, and other outdoor elements. 5. Improve landscapes with fresh plants and seasonal color. Homeowners without the time to plant can consider container gardens, which don’t take much time to assemble but still add appeal to a home’s exterior.

6. Prune planting beds and add new mulch to restore color. 7. Add shutters and accent trim to a home’s exterior to improve on the beauty of the house. 8. Install new fencing or give a fresh coat of paint or stain to an existing fence. 9. Replace concrete paths with tile or stone walkways to make entryways more impressive and inviting.

exp May 31st.

Pros and Cons to Air Duct Cleaning Before looking into the advantages and

disadvantages to duct cleaning, it is advantageous to examine the process involved when cleaning air ducts. There are two ways to have the ducts cleaned in a home: rotary vacuum brushing or high pressure air washing. Vacuum brushing utilizes a spinning brush to scrub dust and debris off the air vents and a vacuum to capture whatever is dislodged. High pressure air washing uses pressurized air

blown through the air ducts. A truck-mounted industrial vacuum is attached to the furnace, and all of the air register vents in the home are covered. Once all the air ducts have been blown clear, another air wand is fed into the end of the hot and cold air supply lines. Dust and debris is then drawn backward into the vacuum. Pros: One of the more obvious

advantages of air duct cleaning is improved health and hygiene in the home. Those prone to allergies may fi nd that routine cleaning helps ameliorate the problems of sneezing and watery eyes. Duct cleaning can remove allergens and dust. The Environmental Protection

Agency says air duct cleaning is handy if there is a noticeable accumulation of dust and debris in ducts or if particles are actually released into the home from supply registers. If ducts are infested with rodents or insects, cleaning will make indoor air much safer. Mold is another factor to consider when determining if ducts need to be cleaned. Mold spores fl oating in the air can lead to illness. Professional cleaning may be the only way to remove mold and mildew from the system. Homeowners who have

fi replaces may fi nd the air becomes dirtier faster. That’s because of the residue put into the air from burning wood and other fuel. This residue not only builds up inside of the chimney in the form of creosote, but also can form a sticky, sooty layer inside of ductwork. Cleaning the ducts can remove this soot. Cons: The EPA advises that no

research has defi nitively shown that duct cleaning prevents health problems. Neither do studies conclusively demonstrate that particle (e.g., dust) levels in homes increase because of dirty air ducts. This is because much of the dirt in air ducts adheres to duct surfaces and does not necessarily enter the living space. What’s more, dirty air that enters the home from outdoors or indoor activities, such as smoking or cleaning, can actually cause greater exposure to contaminants than dirty air ducts. There also is no evidence that cleaning ducts and components of the heating/ cooling system will make

the furnace or air conditioner work any more effi ciently.

Air duct cleaning is an expensive undertaking.

On average the cost of such a service can range from $400 to $1,000, depending on the extent of the cleaning and the size of the home. Homeowners should never attempt to clean air ducts themselves. If the decision is made to have the cleaning done, it should only be on an as-needed basis and completed by a reputable cleaning service.

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We are Derek and Jennifer LeClair and together, we run AlphaCon LLC of Hudson, a family-owned and operated construction business. With 25 years of experience in all phases of residential construction we know what it takes to get the job done – on time. We pride ourselves in the quality of work we do and the trusting relationships we build with our customers.

Communication is key. When you hire AlphaCon, you are hiring us, not a sales team and a bunch of sub-contractors that you don’t know. With minimal overhead and salaries to pay, we are able to provide fair, reasonable prices to our customers so you get the most out of your project. Your happiness is most important to us and we genuinely care about each project we do. With most of our business being repeat and referral customers, our work speaks for itself.

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