Month: November 2016

Riobel Faucets Review: A Few Things You May Want to Know

A home can’t be called a home if it does not contain any faucet. Whether you realize it or not, faucets are crucial fixtures that are perfect in managing the ever precious water. Unfortunately, most people don’t realize the importance of carefully selecting their faucets. If you deliberately chose Riobel Faucets for your kitchen and bathroom needs or if you bought them because they happened to be the most available when you needed faucets, then this article is for you.

What are Riobel Faucets?

These are basically faucets made by the Riobel company. They vary from other faucets by virtue of the brand name Riobel and the emphasis the company places on its products. Riobel has the self-defined mission of providing the best faucets, shower systems and other related products to the general public. This company already has around 15 years of beyond satisfactory service to its pleased customers.

Why are faucets made by Riobel different?

Although all companies constantly spend on the development of new product lines and preserving high quality standards, Riobel differ from the rest in terms of the kind of people working for it and the type of consumers advocating its offered items. Riobel has a very strong grasp on the reality that vigorous enthusiasm is essential in everything its people do, especially in ensuring that trusting clients will be aptly aided in achieving hassle-free home maintenance or renovation.

Riobel’s faucets are conceptualized and manufactured in such ways that the buyers will not have so much trouble installing them. Mechanical parts can just be purchased swiftly, because they are conveniently placed above many counters. This customer-friendly environment allows faucet owners optimal cleaning and maintenance success. With Riobel being distributed by a very fast network, it is logically expected that customers can make the most out of Riobel products. The company also does its best to make sure that the product design, actual manufacturing process and quality control system will produce completely durable products. This durability prevents unnecessary expenses that may be brought about by frequent repairs, replacements or product upgrades. To provide additional customer protection, these long-lasting products are backed up by limited lifetime warranties.

What kinds of faucets does Riobel make?

Riobel manufactures durable, visually appealing, warranty-protected and well designed faucets for kitchen or for bathroom uses. These faucets come in different models that will definitely cater to the aspiration of all person types (be they classical, contemporary or midway between the two). A few designs are perfectly similar to the faucets that can be normally seen in public establishments and typical households, while most of the designs provide uniqueness and an additional layer of personality. These designs are based on varied references and inspirations, such as adherence to classical designs.

Aside from overall appearance, Riobel Faucets also vary in terms of the applied finish. Options include brushed bronze, brazen bronze, polished chrome, brushed chrome, polished nickel and brushed nickel. Aside from adding another dimension in visual diversity, these different finishes also provide different textures …

Factors to Be Considered When You Wish to Build a Swiftlet House

Being a delicacy in Chinese cuisine, bird nest soup is made of edible bird nests that are produced by swiftlets. As trading of bird nest is a lucrative business, swiftlet ranching, building a swiftlet house, has been thriving in countries like Malaysia and Indonesia.

To build a swiftlet house, you need to consider the following factors:-

1. Availability of swiftlet

First, and foremost, you must check the area where you wish to build a bird house, see whether there are swiftlets. This can be done by using a special detector.

2. Location

Preferably your bird house should be located outside the residential and commercial area. It can be in the middle of a palm oil plantation. It must be near to bushes and jungles ideally with a river. The reason is that swiftlet food namely insects thrive in this type of environment. During day time when the air near the ground gets warmer, the insects are floated up to the sky where the swiftlets would feed on them.

3. Structure of the house

It could be a reinforced concrete structure, an unoccupied house, an unoccupied shop lot or a stacked up container.

You may rent an unoccupied house or unoccupied shop lot.

Some farmers prefer to build their own bird house. A double storey structure may cost you RM200,000. You have to get an engineer to design the structure.

A cheaper option is to use containers. You need to build the bottom supporting frame either in reinforced concrete or steel structure. The container could be stacked on top of the supporting frame. A container may cost you about RM6,000. To keep a stable temperature inside the container, you need to insulate the ceiling and wall of the container.

4. Living environment

You must create a living environment suitable for swiftlets that resembles natural cave whereby it is dark and humid. For unoccupied houses and shop lots, you must block the windows and doors to shade the light. The temperature should be kept at between 28 – 30 degree Celsius and the humidity at 75 – 85 %. Coastal area is an ideal place where the average temperature does not change abruptly.

5. Sound system

Sound system includes the equipments and recorded swiftlet songs. It is important as the right swiftlet song would entice the swiftlets to stay in your swiftlet house. You need two types of recorded swiftlet song namely external song to entice the swiftlets to stay in your house and internal song to keep the swiftlet in the house. You need to engage an experienced consultant to advise and install the sound system for you.

6. Hygiene

You need to keep the bird house clean. Cleaning must be done once quarterly. You may consider to use some environmental friendly products like enzyme to neutralize the feces.

7. Ventilation

It must be kept ventilated. The ventilation system must be cleaned weekly.

8. Security

Your sound system equipments and bird nests in the bird house are expensive items. You need …

Making an Old Shed New – Ideas For Updating Your Shed

Tired of looking out your back window at an ugly, weathered backyard shed? What to do without having to go to the trouble and expense of building a shed? Is your better half nudging you to “do something about that ugly shed?” One can’t deny, even the ugliest of sheds is better than no shed.

First, make sure the shed is solid and worthy of continued maintenance – if it needs rebuilding, you can get shed plans that will guide your reconstruction. However, if it’s sturdy, shows no signs of rot or rust – its worthy of a beauty makeover.

Doors are a great way to freshen and update your garden shed – explore options at your local home center. Bring some humor to your shed with an old-fashioned outhouse door. Or, explore wood doors that allow for a bright colored paint, split doors offer a casual look, and double barn doors will provide for charming convenience.

New hardware provides an easy way to give the shed a more current look. Knobs, hinges, latches, and lights will support an affordable facelift.

Consider replacing the weathered, fly filled windows with paneled windows – if the sizes are standard, it’s an affordable upgrade that will add charm and a clean appearance to your backyard shed.

Windows? Now the fun begins. Affordable shutters painted to match your doors and other trim will turn an eye-soar into an adorable shed that will draw the envy of neighbors. If shutters are too cute for your style, consider a variety of flower boxes.

If these added updates aren’t enough, consider adding some pre-fabbed gingerbread accents to soften your shed’s edges, corners and eves. These are easy to install, simple to paint to match and will add an entire new look to your once staid looking shed.

New shed siding can be added, or even a new roof without redoing the entire construction. There are countless options when considering new siding; feel free to explore several unique shed siding ideas here.

If you truly have time on your hands, you may want to ponder updating your shed with a new front porch; add an awning or railing – all or part of this will offer a soft and welcoming appearance. Some have taken it a step further by adding a stone, brick or gravel path, complimenting the inviting look.

Never underestimate the power of paint. Consider a bright and contrasting color of the door and trim.

Tired of looking at that empty shed side? Try sprucing it up with an artistically arranged display of something curious. For example antique yard tools, hanging baskets, birdhouses, tiles, sundials or other interesting items.

Add a trellis to soften the shed’s presence. We’ve seen simple trellis made from apple tree pruning’s that were woven together and kept in place with wire – 2-3-4 in a row along the sheds side will be something a garden club would fuss over, attractive and easy.

Now, for the obvious suggestion – updating your shed …

Ten Steps to Improve Hospitality Communication

You’re celebrating your anniversary at a nice restaurant, you order your favorite meal, it’s going to be a wonderful night… but the waiter is in a bad mood, the order is late, and the food is not what you wanted, you can hear an argument in the kitchen… You won’t be going to that restaurant again, and you’ll tell all your friends too.

Bad communication is bad news anywhere, and in the hospitality industry in particular. So how can we prevent Hospitality communication calamities?

1. Have well-trained staff. If you can’t hire well trained staff, find people who are keen workers and willing to learn, and train them yourself. In fact, some employers prefer to train their own staff, rather than re-train experienced staff to meet their standards. Well trained staff is the key to providing professional service.

2. Hospitality is all about service; stress that to your staff. Hospitality staff often serve people who are on vacation; they might have saved all year long for this one holiday, they are paying good money and deserve the best service you can give them and nothing less. They expect friendly and professional service and you and your staff are there to make sure they get it.

3. Good, two-way communication between all levels of staff in any hospitality business is essential to smooth and cost-effective running of your operation. When service staff at your cafe inform management that they are constantly running out of certain items on the menu, and nothing is done about it, it’s bad hospitality communication, and bad for business. Act ASAP and your staff will know that you value their work and share their goal of providing the best service they can give.

4. Fulfill your guest’s expectations. Good hospitality communication between staff and guests starts with good office work – you, as management, need to provide your staff with the best tools they need to offer the guests the service they expect. When guests arrive in their hotel room expecting free internet service, as advertised on the hotel’s website, and find they have to pay for it, they raise their displeasure with reception staff, who are not to fault in this case. Somewhere along the line, someone provided incorrect information. A typical case of bad communication and bad feelings, that could easily have been avoided.

Make sure all the right information is passed on between different levels and departments. Make sure marketing staff is well informed, and advertise only what you know you can deliver. Building unrealistic expectations results in untold disputes – not good for business.

5. As the world is becoming increasingly digitized, ‘computerizing’ your business has become a necessity. Good hospitality management software is an essential tool these days. With the wide range offered, you are bound to find one that suits your needs and budget. From the basic hand-held PDA system for communicating between kitchen and serving staff, to an all-round management package that covers everything from inventory and hotel room reservations …

What’s Wrong With Polypropylene Or Olefin Area Rugs?

As I browsed a popular chain-store not long ago, I noticed that area rugs have made a dramatic shift in composition compared to a few short years ago. Since my livelihood is based on having an intimate knowledge of the flooring products that I suggest to my clients, I always read labels… especially on deals that seem to good to be true. And as I browsed through the offering of area rugs in the chain-store, I noticed that almost all the rugs were made of polypropylene or it’s very close cousin, olefin. I am a firm believer in consumers being well informed and getting a good value for their money. So I seek here to give a fair comparison of this fiber against what is clearly a better fiber for your interior home decor needs.

Let me start out with the good qualities of polypropylene and olefin. This fiber is a fairly strong man-made fiber that is well suited to mats and runners that may be used at entrances or patios or even outdoors, if properly treated for UV protection. In the past you would almost always find this type of fiber in a low profile, very tight loop style rug, and that is what it is best suited for. Many light to medium duty commercial carpets are made of this fiber (always in loop form). This fiber is usually extruded to the color that it will be (not dyed after extrusion), so it tends to hold it’s color well and can be used in intricate designs. This fiber is also resistant to most types of stains, and cleans up well (in tight loop form). Many manufacturers of area rugs choose this fiber because it is cheaper than other fibers and they can pass the savings on to the consumer.

Now let me point out the not so good qualities of this fiber. This fiber is a man-made synthetic fiber that is petroleum based (not very “green” or environmentally friendly. Although it is a good indoor-outdoor type of fiber in tight looped form, it is basically useless in any other form. In a cut-pile or plush rug it has a bad reputation of matting and crushing very quickly, so even though the fiber is not wearing out, it begins to look very ugly pretty fast. Although it holds color well and resists many types of stains, it tends to hang on to stains that are oily or greasy (even the body oils from the bottom of your feet and your pet’s feet). In other words, it does not clean that well in a cut pile or plush style. So basically, if manufactured in anything other than tightly looped form, you end up with a brightly colored, greasy, oily, matted and crushed rug that looks like it has been there for years instead of months. Lastly, since it is the cheapest fiber that manufacturers use, it is not the greatest value. I have also noticed a shift in the major brand …

How to Build a Chicken Coop – 6 Crucial Elements on Building a Chicken House

When building a chicken coop, it is suggested that you follow the guidelines below for a successful endeavor.

Element #1. – Appearance and Design:

Sketch out your design on a sheet of paper before you do anything else. Think of the colors you will paint the roof and chicken coop walls. Always keep in mind that if your chicken coop is clearly visible to your neighbors, (unless you live in a farm it will most likely be visible to your entire neighborhood,) it shouldn’t ever serve as a distraction or defacement of its utmost surroundings. So make sure to design an aesthetically looking chicken coop so that your neighbors do not complain of its detracting appearance. Once finished, always remember to remove and dispose of any types of garbage or weeds from around your chicken coop. Try to maintain an appealing landscape around it to enhance its overall appearance.

Element #2. – Using Sound Judgment:

When designing your chicken coop structure, you must use sound judgment in almost every aspect of the way.

For instance, you want to use building materials in which the cleaning and disinfecting procedures will be quick and easy. The doors you install should open inwards, not outwards. You don’t want your chickens roosting on your windows, so it is best to install sliding windows.

A question many people ask is how to build a chicken coop who’s floors are easy to hose and spray down without much puddling? Well the secret to that is to slightly slope the flooring toward the door. This way, when you spray out the chicken coop, the water will flow out, hence solving your puddling problem.

Element # 3. – Protection from Hazardous Elements:

So you want to learn how to build a chicken coop with maximum protection?

Then listen up.

As you may know, a well built chicken coop will protect your chickens from hazardous elements such as bad weather (heavy rain, wind, hale, snow, cold climates, etc,) but they will also protect them from hungry predators, theft and injury.

So how do we accomplish that?

Easy. You want to build a draft free chicken house with windows and doors that can be opened and closed as needed. Make sure the windows and doors both have proper screening systems installed in them such as a heavy gage mesh wire. Building the chicken coop on a high yet well drained area with ensure the least amount of dampness of the coop. Be sure to build your chicken coop in an area that faces the sun which will help warm and dry the soil and coop itself after it rains.

To protect your chickens from predators, the best thing to do is to bury your outside runs with chicken wire all around the coop about 1 foot deep. This will prevent some very hungry predators such as raccoons, cats and even dogs from digging underneath it.

Strategy # 4. – Coop Ventilation:

You may be wondering how to build a chicken …

Building A Homemade Dog Wheel Chair

It can be very difficult to keep a handicapped dog healthy without proper exercise. Without a dog wheelchair, many owners simply give up and have their pet euthanized years before it should be necessary.

A major obstacle for dog owners is the expense of buying a dog wheelchair. If you are in that position, consider building (or finding a sympathetic individual to help you build) a homemade dog wheel chair. Even a large one can be constructed much cheaper than commercial kinds, especially if you can scrounge rather than buy the materials.

For small dogs, a PVC frame can be built very easily. A strong, water resistant fabric can act as the support. PVC is very inexpensive and the amount of fabric you need does not cost much either. Your biggest expense will be the wheels. One recommendation is threaded, plastic caster wheels

For larger dogs, most frame designs have you construct a wheelchair using either wood or metal (usually aluminum). There is one design we ran across, however, that modifies a used human wheelchair, available relatively inexpensively at some thrift or medical supply stores.

To make either a wooden or metal homemade dog wheel chair, you will need a measuring tape, saw and power drill at a minimum. In addition, some metal designs call for soldering equipment. It is best to drill holes and use nuts and bolts to fasten pieces together. Add extra holes to allow for adjustments.

The supporting material for large dogs having problems with either their front or back legs usually consists of heavily padded webbing straps or brake wire suspended from the frame. Straps are often adjustable with buckles and sliders.

For a dog that needs support for all four legs, a sling made of canvas or other strong material is attached to the frame. It may be best to use safety pins to fasten this material prior to making the final adjustments and sewing them together. In all cases, the design should be such that the dog can go to the bathroom without dirtying the materials.

Wheels off an old bicycle, jogging stroller or human wheelchair are often used for larger dog wheelchairs. If the dog will be turning sharp corners, the axles can be set at an angle so the wheels lean inward a little to make it more stable. Wide, knobby tires will handle rougher terrain better than skinny ones. Thinner, lighter tires require less effort when your handicapped dog runs on asphalt or concrete.

Once you have finished building your homemade dog wheel chair it will be time to fine tune the adjustments. Watch your dog during movement for signs of misalignment and discomfort. Check for chafing from the supports.

Be patient while your dog gets used to this new contraption that follows him around!…

10 Facts About Native American Rattles

When you visit the southwest, try to visit an Indian pow wow. Native American rattles will be a very interesting part of the ceremony. If you want to learn more about American Indian culture, you will love the authentic rattles made from various natural materials. The Indian people also call them Native American shakers, and some people use them for southwest and rustic decor.

1. Rattles have become icons of Native American heritage. They represent the various different Indigenous tribes. In Native culture rattles are one of the most popular instruments used during ceremonials.

2. Different Tribes use rattles now as they have for generations. They are used in public gatherings. They are also important in the spiritual connection with the creator.

3. Historically, Native American rattles have been essential to tribal ceremonies being symbolic to each tribe that uses them. The symbols usually include those from the plant, animal and mineral kingdom.

4. A turtle shell container may represent the animal kingdom. The earthen paint used to decorate the rattle may represent the mineral kingdom. Small rocks may also represent the mineral kingdom as they are placed inside. The plant kingdom is usually represented by the handle of the rattle.

5. It’s interesting that not all tribes used drums but most did use rattles throughout history. Some Tribes used elaborate rattles made with turtle shells or carved gourds. Some tribes almost exclusively used sea weed rattles.

6. One type among the American Indian Tribes that was the most popular was the rawhide rattle. Each Tribe had their own way of making the rawhide rattles. They used varying patterns and symbols in their bead work, colors and designs. By studying the designs and colors used, you can tell which tribe made it. They were handcrafted works of art.

7. One thing the Tribes had in common is that they used the rattles as a part of their music and dance. They also used them for medicine and spirituality.

8. Native rattles use many natural materials such as leather, rawhide, beads and feathers. Other choices include antlers, bones and shells as well as fur, leather, seeds and rocks. Each of these are what the artist uses to create a personal and unique Indian rattle.

9. What is inside the rattle is equally important. Many times, corn, beans or manzanita seeds or trade beads are placed inside. One interesting custom is to use small smooth stones gathered from the opening of an ant hill.

10. Music and songs as well as stories have always been an important part of Native American teaching. Sharing legends and teachings through ceremonies and rituals keeps traditions and cultural beliefs alive.

There is something thrilling about owning one and it is easy to buy Native American rattles online. Display a rattle with your rustic southwest decor. Or, use an Indian rattle in your drumming circle and enjoy the authentic Indian art on Native rattles. You will no doubt be drawn to the colorful culture and sound of …

Remodeling Your Bathroom – What Does a 4 Inch Spread Faucet Say About Your Home?

Before I entered into the Kitchen & Bath industry I never thought about the difference between a 4″ spread faucet and an 8″ spread faucet. I grew up in a small, rural town and honestly can’t remember the type of faucet in any house I had seen, including my own. My parents built a new house in the late 70’s so I’m sure all the faucets were 4″ spread or also known as mini faucets. I really never looked or knew the difference.

Even in my 20’s, I owned my home and did a low budget renovation. I had to aleve myself of the 50’s blue from Kohler. Oddly, I don’t really know the official name of the color. I went to Home Depot and bought a new pedestal sink. It had a 4″ spread faucet hole drilling. I thought I was really ‘upgrading’. It definitely was an upgrade but if I had known in advance with a little extra money it would have made a bigger difference.

What is the big deal whether you have a 4″ and 8″ spread faucet? And for many of us… what does that mean anyway! A sink or countertop will determine the faucet spread you need. Holes are drilled to accommodate the faucet. Look at the hole drillings. If you put a measuring tape up to the holes there will be either a 4″ or 8″ spread between them. Please note that in all plumbing situations, you measure from the center of the hole and not the right or left of the hole. All plumbing measures are made from the center of the hole.

The upside with purchasing an 8 inch spread or also know as a widespread faucet is that it tends to be known as ‘higher end’. It means you took your renovation seriously. Perhaps these issues are not important to you and that’s fine. So let’s look at the more practical reasons to choose between the two faucet types.

1. It’s usually harder to clean an 8″ spread faucet because there are three separate flanges to clean. With a 4″ spread faucet there is normally a single bottom plate to clean around.

2. The quality of an 8″ spread faucet is usually better than a 4″ faucet. I should state is more than usually better. Between the function and finish the 8″ spread should usually win in the long run. Also, 4″ spread faucets are normally available in chrome only.

3. Because of the first two points, a desire to achieve better things is the reason to get an 8″ faucet. Everyone wants to improve there lives and purchase nicer things when they are affordable.

Now it is time for reality. Buy the faucet that you can afford. Have a budget. It doesn’t matter if you have 4″ or 8″ faucet. You don’t have to impress your friend, family and enemies with having the best things. If you can afford it then go for it. If not, enjoy the water …

3 Crucial Benefits of a Bathroom Extractor Fan

Whether in the process of building a brand new home, remodeling the entire bathroom, or simply making a few changes, an important element that should not be overlooked is a bathroom extractor fan. Although there are many benefits associated with this type of fan, the two that people appreciate most includes improved ventilation and heat removal.

Benefit 1: Improved Airflow

For starters, when installation is done correctly, the fan would help improve airflow. One of the primary problems in any bathroom is humidity. Due to the fan design, when mounted on the ceiling or high up on the wall it works by extracting moist air from the room, leaving the interior of the bathroom drier. With this, any unwanted or lingering odors would be removed. The bathroom can be challenging when it comes to unpleasant odors so having a fan that provides excellent venting capabilities is certainly a worthwhile investment.

Benefit 2: Better Ventilation

Another benefit associated with ventilation is the reduction or elimination of mold. Because of high humidity levels and steam produced in the bathroom, it is common to experience problems specific to the growth of mold and mildew. In addition to being unsightly, this type of fungus is also dangerous. If you install an extractor fan in a new or remodeled home, this problem could be prevented whereas in an existing home to replace an older fan, growth of mold and mildew could be stopped.

Most newly constructed homes have bathrooms designed to meet strict regulations for ventilation. However, in older homes, chances are good the existing fan is simply not equipped to deal with high levels of humidity, steam, and dampness. Additionally, let us say your bathroom has a skylight. During the winter with the furnace heating the home hot air is going to rise, which then mixes with cold air at which time condensation develops. This means along with the problem of humidity, steam, and dampness, an additional issue of condensation would contribute to the growth of mold and mildew.

Benefit 3: Heat Removal

Another benefit of the fan is heat removal. If you live in a part of the world where temperatures are hot, another challenge would be presented. We all know heat rises, regardless of climate but living in a hot environment means facing a different obstacle to overcome. Heat in the bathroom rises to the ceiling where it causes the room to feel uncomfortable, not to mention adds to the cost of cooling the home. With the fan installation, heat would be pulled into the roof space, resulting in better airflow and a cooler bathroom.

As you can see, installation of a bathroom extractor fan is certainly beneficial.…