5 Things to Consider When Choosing New Windows for Your Home

October 15, 2014

5 Things to Consider When Choosing New Windows for Your Home

When choosing new windows for your home, the options out there can be a little bit overwhelming. In the first place, it can be hard to determine which window style will not only look best with the overall feel and design of your home, but will also function the best for you. Secondly, choosing the right window is essential to the energy-efficiency of your home, and there are a lot of small details that can make a big impact on your heating and cooling bills. To help make the choice a little bit easier, here are 5 things to consider when selecting new windows for your next renovation, and how you can use this opportunity to save money—and the environment—in a big way.
5 Things to Consider When Choosing New Windows for Your Home

1. Functionality and Use

Tired of the Hulk-like strength it takes to force open your old windows? Everybody’s been there. Luckily, a lot of improvements have been made over the years to make the ease of operation the norm, rather than the exception. For example, glider windows sweep open side-to-side, awning windows pivot on a central hinge, and casement windows open completely outward. But don’t think that these windows lack durability just because they’re easy to use. In addition to being made from the strongest materials, all of these styles feature secure locking systems and extra-tight seals to ensure there are no gaps that air can escape from. This thermal efficiency is what helps you save on those energy bills—which is always a big score!

2. Ease of Care

Most windows today are easier to clean than ever before, thanks to thoughtful construction and innovative materials that don’t stain, peel or crack. Awning and glider windows are particularly great options for the upper floors of your home, where it can be difficult to get at any spots or smudges on the outer panes. Both options have removable sashes which allow you to clean both sides without any trouble. Plus, the overall easy of care means gunk and debris has no chance to build up in the nooks and crannies, which can otherwise compromise the insulating properties of your windows. A small detail sure, but one that can make a big difference over time.

3. Size

Remodeling can be a great time to finally increase the size of your windows. Larger pane windows, or architectural bow or bay windows, allow more light into your home which can totally change the mood of your rooms and even make small spaces appear larger. However, because of their size, larger windows can let in more UV rays which can damage and discolor walls and fabrics within the room. Consider energy-efficient glasses like Low E II, LoĒ³-366 and Tempered, which are coated with metal oxides that can block these rays, provide overall greater insulation and prevent any sun damage from ruining your decor.

4. Material

Not all windows are made equal. Traditional materials like vinyl and aluminum aren’t very durable and can wear, warp and crack over time. For your upgrade, consider installing fiberglass windows, which are extremely resistant to seal failures and also never peel, rust, dent or discolor. Increased durability means you’ll never have to worry about your windows being compromised, and you won’t have to re-invest in new windows after a few years like you would with those made of lower-quality materials.

5. Climate

If you live in an area with drastic and unpredictable temperature fluctuations, the constant heating and cooling of the air can cause your window to expand and contract more than normal. In old or poor-quality windows this can cause cracks, so you’ll want to consider an efficient alternative that can withstand even the wildest temperature differences without any breakage which can, again, compromise the heat retention in your home.
Now that you know the ins and outs of how your new windows can help increase your energy-efficiency, you can make a more well-informed choice that works with your home, lifestyle, and surroundings. Your local home improvement experts can also give you more advice about which windows are right for you, so don’t be afraid to speak up and ask!
Paul Kazlov

via: 5 Things to Consider When Choosing New Windows for Your Home 

Apple Braided Bread Recipe

October 10, 2014

Apple Braided Bread Recipe

Homestead & Survival researches to find the most informative and helpful DIY’s, tutorials, recipes, and tips and tricks to make life more simple, and hopefully a little better. Let’s get started with today’s featured article…

Apple-Braided-Bread-Recipe
Presentation is everything. It’s one thing to put apples inside some kind of crust and fill your entire home with the crazy good smells of baked apples. But, it’s also wonderful to add a little presentation pizzazz by doing something neat with the bread. Here you’ll learn to braid the bread into a beautiful desert.

Find the recipe here: Apple Braided Bread Recipe — Homestead and Survival.

Tzatziki Grilled Chicken Salad

October 7, 2014

Tzatziki Grilled Chicken Salad

Tzatziki Grilled Chicken Salad
4 Proteins  2 Fats  1 Carbs
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 4
Yummy Greek salad with cucumbers, tomatoes, pepperoncini, grilled chicken and a healthy, homemade tzatziki sauce!
Ingredients
6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
6 tablespoons fresh-squeezed lemon juice
5 tablespoons Greek yogurt
1 1/2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 1/4 teaspoons dried oregano
1 1/2 teaspoons dried thyme
sea salt and pepper, to taste
1 pound chicken, cut into pieces
4 cups Romaine lettuce
1 cucumber, peeled and sliced
1 cup diced tomatoes
sliced pepperoncini (optional)

Directions
>Combine olive oil, lemon juice, Greek yogurt, red wine vinegar, garlic, oregano, thyme, salt, and pepper in a small bowl. Use a whisk or a fork to combine. Pour a little more than half of the sauce over the chicken in a bowl or dish, cover, and let marinate in the refrigerator for at least one hour. Reserve the rest of the sauce (in the fridge) to use as dressing on the salad.

Remove chicken from marinade, and grill chicken on a grill or in a skillet on the stove. (Feel free to pour some of the marinade over the chicken while it cooks for a little more flavor.)

Time to make the salad! Combine lettuce, cucumber slices, diced tomatoes, and pepperoncini in a big bowl. Add grilled chicken, and toss to combine. Drizzle dressing over everything, and toss to coat. Divide salad between four plates, and enjoy!

 

via Tzatziki Grilled Chicken Salad | Recipes | Beyond Diet.

80 Mind Blowing Kitchen Hacks That Will Rock Your World

October 4, 2014

80 Mind Blowing Kitchen Hacks That Will Rock Your World

80 Mind Blowing Kitchen Hacks That Will Rock Your World
While sometimes time spent in the kitchen is relaxing and enjoyable (think cooking warm, hearty stews on a cold winters day), sometimes we just want to get things done as quickly as possible.
This article compiles 80 of the cleverest, most ingenious, “why didn’t I think of that” ideas for becoming the most efficient and most talented kitchen whizz ever!
Use the arrows below to start exploring these ideas…

 

Read more: http://www.homemadehomeideas.com/80-time-saving-kitchen-hacks/

Watermelon Gazpacho

September 18, 2014

Watermelon Gazpacho

Watermelon Gazpacho
Yields 4 servings

Ingredients:
5 cups chopped seedless watermelon
1/2 cup chopped yellow onion
1/2 cup chopped green peppers
>1/2 to 1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 cup chopped cilantro
2 teaspoons chopped jalapeño pepper
1 tablespoon lime juice
1 cup finely chopped seedless watermelon, reserved for garnish
1/2 to 1 cup finely diced avocado, reserved (optional)

Directions:
Puree the first 10 ingredients in a blender until smooth. Adjust the seasonings as needed. Chill in the fridge for at least 1 hour. Stir in the finely chopped watermelon and avocado at serving time.
Recipe and photo courtesy of National Watermelon Promotion Board 
via Watermelon Gazpacho-Hispanic Kitchen

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