If you have recently moved into your first home with a dishwasher, then you may find that the appliance does not seem to meet your expectations. Many people believe they need to prewash their dishes to see their plates and silverware come clean. However, this is not the case, and your dishwasher is likely not working properly if you need to rinse and scrub your pots and pans before placing them in the dishwasher. It is also possible that the previous owners of the home did not complete proper maintenance on the appliance. If you want to enjoy your new-found freedom from washing dishes by hand, then make sure to troubleshoot the appliance with the following tips.
Sprayer Arm Clogs
Your dishwasher works by forcing water and detergent against your dishes with a strong spray. The water comes out of a spray arm that rotates around the bottom of the appliance. Once the detergent does its work, fresh water is used to rinse the soap and food debris away. A few gallons of water are allowed to flow into a tub at the very bottom of the dishwasher so that it can be released by the arm.
The sprayer arm contains a number of holes where the water is released. However, if you have hard water that contains calcium and magnesium, the spray openings can easily clog with the mineral deposits. The dishes that are usually cleaned by the water released from the clogged spray openings may then remain dirty. If you see dishes in one area of the appliance that remain dirty while others appear clean, then this may be your problem.
Cleaning the Arm
You can easily remedy this problem by cleaning the sprayer arm. The arm sits on the bottom of the dishwasher, so remove the lower dish rack to access it. A cap generally sits on top of the arm that can be screwed off. The arm will likely release with a gentle pull afterwards. Fill your kitchen sink with water and about two cups of white vinegar. Allow the arm to sit in the mixture for two or three hours so the mineral deposits can dissolve. Rinse the arm afterwards and push a toothpick into each spray opening to release built up debris. Replace the arm afterwards and test the appliance again.
Booster Heater Issues
As previously mentioned, water used in your dishwasher is forced into a small tub before it is sprayed onto your dishes. There are several reasons why the water is not released onto the dishes directly from the attached water line. Detergent must be mixed with the water first, and it also must be heated to a level where the fluid sanitizes your plates. A small device called a booster heater is used to increase the water temperature to 130 or 140 degrees Fahrenheit. This is necessary, because most water heaters are set to a temperature at about 120 degrees Fahrenheit based on manufacturer suggestions.
If the booster heater stops working, then heat will come from your water alone. As you know, lukewarm water is likely to come out of the water lines before the hottest water runs through them. This means your dishwasher will probably be using somewhat warm water during the cleaning cycle.
Testing the Booster Heater
It can be incredibly difficult to test whether or not the booster heater is working without actually measuring the temperature inside the dishwasher. Thankfully, you can do this with a special waterproof thermometer called a dishwasher thermometer. These devices are usually utilized in professional kitchens to ensure the safety and sanitation of the plates and cookware that come into contact with restaurant foods. The thermometer has a memory to record both high and low readings once it is activated so you can see if the wash and rinse cycle produce temperatures above 130 degrees Fahrenheit.
If the thermometer indicates that temperatures only reach about 120 degrees Fahrenheit, then the booster heater is probably not working. An appliance specialist will need to replace the device. In the meantime, consider increasing the temperature of your water heater to 140 degrees Fahrenheit. Before you run the dishwasher, run the warm water in your kitchen sink until you feel that the water is hot. Water released from the dishwasher basin will then likely be hot as well if you prime the water pipes in this manner.
For more tips or help with your dishwasher, contact a local retailer that sells and repairs appliances.
Winnipeg has a fairly new water treatment plant that was finished in late 2009. This state-of the-art facility is designed for safety, performance, and environmental sustainability. It’s the crown jewel of the City of Winnipeg, in the province of Manitoba, Canada. Keep reading to learn more about Winnipeg’s water treatment plant and how it works to clean and improve the taste of your drinking water:
About The Deacon Reservoir Water Treatment Plant
Winnipeg’s water treatment plant is located on the Deacon Reservoir and began operating on December 9, 2009. Inside the plant, an extremely automated system controls and monitors a multitude of mechanical and electrical equipment, as well as a wide variety of gauges and instruments. Some of the equipment housed inside the plant include 2300 valves, 1400 instruments, 140 pumps, and 40 processors.
All of the mechanics housed in the water treatment plant can handle 400 million liters of water a day and are expected to last about 75 years with normal maintenance and upkeep. What’s even better is that the plant is able to treat water during prolonged power outages.
The Water Treatment Processes
In order to make water from the Deacon Reservoir safe for human consumption, it goes through several treatment steps. These steps include the following:
Coagulation / Flocculation – This treatment process involves adding sulfuric acid to reduce the pH of the water and ferric chloride to make the particles in the water attractive to each other. The organic matter particles clump together to form larger particles so they can be more easily removed during the next treatment step.
Dissolved Air Flotation – This is where water flows into dissolved air flotation tanks so the water can be supersaturated with compressed air, which makes it look frothy. The air bubbles float the clumps of organic matter to the surface of the water where it is skimmed off and pumped into an onsite processing area.
Ozonation – During this stage of treatment, water flows into ozone chambers and liquid oxygen is pumped into a special generator to make ozone. The ozone is added to the water to improve filter performance during the next treatment stage. It also destroys most of the harmful bacteria in the water and improves the odor and taste of the water. At the end of this treatment stage, sodium bisulphite is added to the treated water to remove the ozone.
Filtration – Here, the water flows to the filtration gallery and passes through carbon filters that have been biologically activated. This removes any remaining particles in the water, like parasites and dissolved organic matter.
Chlorine Disinfection – Next, the water goes into the chlorine chamber, where a small amount of chlorine is added to the water to kill bacteria and viruses. At this stage, sodium hydroxide is also added to the water in order to raise the pH back to drinking levels. At the end of this treatment, the water is pumped into an underground reservoir, also called a clearwell.
Ultraviolet Light Disinfection – This stage of water treatment takes place when the water is pumped from the clearwell, through steel chambers. When the water flows through the steel chambers it is subject to ultraviolet lamps that renders any remaining micro-organisms harmless, like Giardia and Crystosporidium, which are disease-causing parasites.
Final Treatment Steps – In the last step, the treated water flows from the steel chambers into 2 large pipes, before making it back into the city’s water system and out through your faucets. When the water flows through these large pipes, fluoride is added to prevent tooth decay in Winnipeg’s residents, and orthophosphate is added to stop lead from leaching into the water when it flows through old pipes.
How The Plant and Water Treatment Program Has Improved Drinking Water
After the water treatment plant opened, Winnipeg’s residents have enjoyed a higher quality drinking water that was treated according to Health Canada guidelines. The city’s tap water also smells better, looks clearer, and tastes wonderful. For more information on water treatment installation, contact a business such as Bonnyville Water Conditioning.
Geese are prevalent all over Canada, and when they invade your property every year, you need to take steps to keep them out. Geese droppings contain harmful germs that can make your lawns unsafe to walk on. Additionally, geese can snack on any berries, corn and seedlings you have in your gardens or around the house. If you have small marshes or ponds on your property, geese will establish them as breeding grounds. You can keep resident and migrating geese out of your gardens, ponds and other areas on property with these safe and humane wildlife control techniques below.
Place Fencing Around Your Garden
Geese of both sexes can grow very large in Canada, but males tend to grow up to 45 inches in height. This impressive height makes it easy for male geese to visibly scan large areas before deciding if it’s worth the effort to invade them. Once males enter your garden, females can follow.
If you haven’t done so already, place a wooden fence around your garden to prevent geese from entering it. However, the fence should be high enough to keep large geese from looking over it, and the fencing panels should be placed close enough to keep all geese from seeing between them.
You may wish to place wood fencing all around your garden to block off geese. If necessary, cover the top of the garden with a hoop house or some other type of protective barrier. Protective barriers with tiny openings that allow sunlight and oxygen to reach your plants is ideal.
Finally, add an underground irrigation system to the garden to keep your plants well-nourished throughout the year. You protect your garden from wandering geese without sacrificing the health of your plants.
Block Off Your Pond and Marsh
After you protect your garden, take steps to safeguard your pond or marsh. Canadian ponds and marshes make perfect homes for geese to breed and raise young. Although most geese migrate south during the winter, some geese choose to stay in Canada all year round. Resident geese live in pairs and will use the protective, tall cordgrass, cottontails and other natural water plants to establish nesting sites.
Placing large wire fencing around your pond or marsh is a good way to ward off mating geese. Also, removing the water plants around your pond or marsh may help block geese. If the geese don’t have a place to nest, they may go elsewhere to build homes.
If none of the above wildlife control techniques work for you, try instilling fear in the pesky geese instead.
Put Up Dummies and Statues of Predators Around Your Property
Although geese don’t have many natural predators to worry about because of their enormous sizes, Canadian brown bears, wolves and coyotes are three animals that will eat geese if they catch them. You can place movable or electronic wildlife dummies of these predators around your garden, marsh or pond to deter geese from landing or walking in these locations.
Geese tend to be very intelligent birds, so it’s a good idea that you use lifelike decoys to scare them off. Your local wildlife contractor may point you in the right direction to find what you need, or you can purchase wildlife decoys online from a home and garden store.
If nothing you try works, call wildlife control to help you secure your property against geese all year round. Your contractor will use humane methods, such as goose repellents, to make your property inhospitable to geese. Your wildlife contractor is your last resort for help, so don’t hesitate to call them when you need it.
If you’re considering the purchase of a portable building to use as a guest house or fishing and hunting cabin, you need to consider your heating options. This is especially important due to the cold winter weather Canada often experiences. If your portable building is relatively small,you might opt for a portable space heater for your portable building, as it is cost-effective with no installation required. Other options include baseboard heat systems, stoves and radiant floor heating. Continue reading for a closer look at five heating options for your portable building:
1. Space Heater
A space heater will be the easiest solution and the cheapest as well. The space heater will typically run on electricity that has been wired in your portable building, therefore you simply plug it into a wall outlet and as use it as needed. The fuel burning space heaters tend to be more hazardous and less cost effective than the electric models.
If you choose a space heater for your portable cabin, you might prefer the infrared model. An electric infrared space heater can heat a mid-sized portable cabin adequately. The infrared option doesn’t tend to draw moisture from the air, eliminating the need for the use of a humidifier. These typically include thermostat with adjustable temperature settings.
A ceramic space heater is another option. Coils are made with ceramic and aluminum parts, which stay cool to the touch. These are typically easy to use and many will come with timers and remote control.
2. Baseboard Heater
Many customized modular buildings, such as sheds and portable cabins, come standard with baseboard heating systems. Baseboard heating is generally considered safe and will be mounted directly on the floor tile, saving interior space.
Baseboard heating for a portable cabin may alternately be installed directly under a window. This will enable the heater to warm the cool air that enters the building from a non-insulated window. A thermostat may be included or purchased separately.
3. Gas or Propane Stove
Similar to a small gas fireplace, the gas or propane stove is another option for heating your portable building. Look for one with a built-in blower to circulate the warm air better. This is an economical choice for your heating, and it will be constructed of stainless steel parts, chimney included. You may wall-mount the unit or it can be freestanding.
4. Wood Burning Stove
Small and rustic-looking, this is a favorite among many who own portable cabins. You’ll find the materials are often constructed of durable cast iron and porcelain. Many designs measure only 12×19 inches. Although they are tiny, the wood burning stoves can warm a portable cabin nicely.
5. Radiant Floor Heating
If your portable building is subject to drafts, you might want to consider this option. Radiant floor heating is a good choice for a portable cabin, as the heat will rise from the floor, warming objects and furniture, unlike forced heat which only warms the air. When choosing hydronic radiant heat for your portable cabin, you’ll need to have plumbing installed as well. This is because radiant floor heating works by running hot water through the coils.
Alternatively, you might choose electric radiant heat which works with the use of heating coils beneath the floor, with no water or plumbing involved. With radiant floor heating, a thermostat and sensor is built into the floor. Is your portable building situated in a particularly dusty location? Dust and pollen from outside the cabin won’t be circulated into the air when using radiant heat.
It’s a good idea to consult with your portable building manufacturer to be certain the cabin is suitable for the type of heating system you’re considering. Customized options may include the heating system already installed, saving you time and effort. For more information, you may want to contact a local portable buildings supplier.
Is your kitchen a little dated? If you are tired of staring at those whitewashed cabinets or antiquated drawer-pulls, you might be ready to switch out your cupboards. Although you might be tempted to head to your local showroom and meet with a contractor, it is important to remember you might have to live with those new cabinets for awhile, and your decisions will matter later. Here are two things to consider before choosing new kitchen cabinets.
Cabinets are cabinets, right? As you walk through the kitchen showroom, it can be easy to think about price and assume everything else is pretty much the same. However, there are several different types of cabinets, each with their own set of advantages and drawbacks. Here are the three main types of cabinets, and how to tell if they are right for you:
Before you start talking with your contractor about your kitchen renovation dreams, think carefully about your budget and the amount of time that you have to dedicate to the project.
It can be easy to get carried away with aesthetics, but the fact of the matter is that functionality matters too. Even the prettiest cabinets might get annoying if you can’t use them like you want to. Here are a few different ways you can customize the function of your new cabinetry:
The right kitchen cabinets might help you to enjoy a more beautiful, functional space, while improving the value of your home.
Finding the right present for your elderly parents during the holiday season can be difficult. If they are like many senior citizens, they probably already have a house stuffed full of clothing and unnecessary knickknacks. So you probably have no desire to waste your money on buying more of these types of presents for your parents.
Instead, what you would really like to get your parents is something that they could actually use and would also make their lives easier as they age. In order to do so, consider asking your siblings or other relatives if they would like to contribute money towards buying one of these two useful gifts rather than everyone buying your elderly parents more sweaters and ties.
Have your parents always taken great pride in their lawn and garden? Unfortunately, as they’ve gotten older, it’s probably become more difficult for them to take care of their property. You may also be concerned that your elderly parents could seriously injure themselves while dragging a garden hose and sprinkler around on the uneven ground in their yard.
Purchasing your parents a sprinkler system or drip irrigation system will make it much easier for them to keep their lawn and garden looking great by:
Computer or Tablet
The number of senior citizens using the Internet today has grown significantly. According to Radio Canada International, only five percent of Canadians who were 75 years of age or older were utilizing the Internet in 2000. That number had increased to 27 percent by 2013.
If your elderly parent has not been introduced to the wonders of the Internet, maybe it’s time you purchase them a computer or a tablet. Some of the reasons why Internet access can be so important for your elderly parents:
While these two presents are pricey, they are ones your elderly parents could get a lot of use out of and could make their lives easier in many ways.
Replacing flooring in your home can come with a hefty price tag, especially when you add in the cost of professional labor. Many homeowners take the plunge and complete the renovations themselves to save money. According to HGTV Canada, wood flooring is priced around $4 to $6 per square foot, while natural stone tile is even more costly at $5 to $12 or higher per square foot, not including the cost of installation. If you’re budget is limited, there are more affordable options. Check out these frugal home flooring options.
1. Laminate Flooring
Laminate is an inexpensive flooring option that combines highly realistic stone and hardwood textures with great function and durability. The flooring is made in layers, with a moisture-resistant backing layer that helps to prevent board warping. Laminate flooring often comes in the form of planks that range in size.
With the exception of carpet, laminate can be installed over almost any existing floor in your home and holds up well against high traffic and normal wear and tear. The top layer of the laminate protects it from stains and markings caused by dirt and debris. It is also resistant to fading caused by UV light exposure.
Laminate flooring “floats” over the underlying floor and does not actually adhere directly to the subfloor. Instead, the planks are interlocked to prevent the planks from moving. The interlocking process allows the material to expand or contract due to changes in temperature and pressure without damaging the flooring.
2. Vinyl Flooring
Vinyl is an affordable flooring option that offers durability, style, and long-lasting performance. When properly installed, vinyl flooring is extremely resistant to scratches, dents and stains. There are two primary types of vinyl flooring: sheet flooring, which is constructed of large sheets for a seamless floor, or tile flooring which is easier to install and replicates the look of stone tile at a fraction of the price.
Vinyl flooring holds up well against heavy foot traffic and the softness of the vinyl reduces noise and provides a comfortable material under foot. This material comes in a wide range of colors and patterns and can resemble wood grains or stone textures. If installation is well-executed, vinyl flooring is nearly impervious to water penetration.
The key to a flawless installation of vinyl flooring is to properly prepare the subfloor. Vinyl, especially tiles, requires a smooth surface to prevent any imperfections from showing through. Ideal subflooring is a layer of plywood that has been sanded and is free of any bumps or other flaws.
3. Ceramic Tile Flooring
Ceramic tile flooring is tough and beautiful, and is highly resistant to moisture, fire, frost, and chemicals. The tiles are extremely hard and difficult to break, making them a wise choice for nearly any room of the home, including the kitchen and bathroom. While slightly more expensive than laminate and vinyl, ceramic tiles can last many years if well maintained.
These tiles are often used in high-traffic areas of the home due to their resistance to wear and tear. Ceramic tiles can be coated to prevent slips and falls by adding an abrasive glaze or grit to the surface. Direct sun exposure does not cause ceramic tiles to fade or alter their color. If well maintained, ceramic tiles can maintain their like-new appearance for many years.
The installation process for ceramic tiles is easy enough to be achieved by the average do-it-yourselfer. The subfloor must be prepped by thoroughly cleaning it and removing any dirt and debris. Once the tiles are installed, the finished tiled must be grouted to keep the tiles from shifting. If quality tile is used, your new flooring could increase the value of your home.
If money is tight, consider renovating your room with more frugal flooring options. The floor options mentioned above are inexpensive, durable and can help you achieve a wide range of looks. For more information about frugal flooring options, contact your local flooring supplier.
Windows are such a crucial part of a home’s interior and exterior beauty. Having the right style can illuminate your home, making it cozy, airy, or even breezy. While choosing the right window is a good start, it’s important not to overlook the window dressings and treatments afterward. There’s no need to stick with boring old curtains, either–get some inspiration from these four ingenious window treatment ideas, and you’ll be well on your way to creating a design scheme that’s truly “yours.”
For Nautical Inspiration
If you keep a nautical theme–or if you are treating windows near the shore or ocean–there’s a quick and easy way to bring that element into your window dressing scheme. Swap out your original curtain rod for an old oar!
Used oars can be purchased in woods like oak and pine, and can easily be re-varnished to match interior woods if needed. It’s cute, quirky, and can help to tie together your design scheme.
For Antique Country Charm
If your focus is more in an older, antique, or rustic country charm, search your local thrift shop for old straw hats. Gather enough to sit on the area above your curtain rod. Add a delicate lace curtain and use the hats to frame the top of it along the rod–it’s just the right amount of softness and natural appeal.
If you have trouble with hanging the hats, thumbtacks pressed into a wooden rod is quite effective. You can also use a small, thick piece of wire wrapped around the rod, and then tilted upwards.
Use Stencils For a Fresh Change
Curtains aren’t your only option for window treatments. You can gain a fair amount of attractive design and privacy by using window stencils. Generally, you’ll want to stick with white or light colors, as they allow more light through than darker colors.
Stencils come in a variety of styles–you can quite literally create stenciled on lace, paw prints, or even temporary holiday designs that can be swapped out. Any department store or craft supply store should have the products you need to make it work.
Try Indoor Awnings for City Slicker Charm
Awnings aren’t just useful for keeping the rain off your head outside. When used as a valance, they can be a great way to provide shade and moderate light in a kitchen. You can even make them right at home if you’re handy with simple tools, fabric, and glue.
The great thing about indoor awnings is that their base is essentially identical–they all start with a similar frame, and can then be covered in any pattern, paint, or fabric you enjoy. A word to the wise, though: fabric tends to offer the most style.
Use Beads Galore and More
The bead curtain may have gone out of style in the late 1980s, but the best thing about today’s styles is that they pull inspiration from previous decades. While most were made with wooden beads in the 60s and 70s, you can create your own from any style of bead you like.
Square, flat beads painted in a variety of complementary colors is a great way to accent a flat, solid-color decor with smooth lines. Crystals and glass beads will allow more light transfer, and will cast prismatic light when the sun comes in.
When it comes to making your own bead curtain, it’s all about spacing. The one rule you want to make sure that you follow is that larger and closer beads will provide more privacy, while smaller and more spaced out beads will make it easier to see through your curtain. If you don’t want to make it yourself, plenty of department stores have ready-made options available to help you out.
Creating a Happy Home With Great Windows
Your home should always be somewhere you feel comfortable, and getting there often requires a bit of personalization. Don’t feel like you’re stuck with the same boring ideas! If you aren’t happy with what you currently have, maybe it’s time to consider renovating. What works for one person may not work for another–and that’s where the experts come in. If you have questions about your windows or renovating, contact a local professional for advice.