Archive for July 2015 | Monthly archive page

Tile may look and feel impervious to harm, but don’t take chances. Test your stain-removal technique on an inconspicuous spot of both tile and grout before cleaning. A nonabrasive all-purpose cleaner or a tub-tile-sink product removes most stains. Try the following techniques for specific stains.

 

Blood: Dab the stain with hydrogen peroxide or diluted bleach.

 

Coffee, tea, or juice: Wash the stain with detergent and hot water, then blot with hydrogen peroxide or diluted bleach.

 

Gum, wax, or tar: Place ice cubes in a resealable plastic bag and lay the bag over the material you want to remove from the tile. Once the material solidifies, remove as much of it as possible with a crafts stick. Remove any remaining residue with nonflammable paint thinner.

 

Grease or fat-base stains: Wash the stain with club soda and water or with a nonabrasive floor cleaner.

 

Ink or dye: Soak a clean cloth with diluted bleach and lay it over the stain. Let the cloth stay in place until the stain disappears. Rinse well.

 

Iodine: Scrub the iodine stain with diluted ammonia and rinse well.

If you live in a home without electricity and few or no windows, it’s always incredibly dark inside, even at high noon a Liter of Light is a sustainable lighting project that is trying to help people overcome that problem with extremely simple technology

 

What is the Solar Bottle Bulb?

It is a simple bottle bulb, usually a 1 liter soda bottle that is filled with a solution of purified water and bleach. The bottle is inserted halfway through a hole drilled in the metal roof and its sides are sealed. The whole deal looks like a bulb through a sunroof and provides a good amount of light by deflecting sunlight into gloomy interiors.

The chlorine and bleach “poisons” the water to keep molds from developing so the solution can last up to five years. The clear and purified water helps disperse the light through refraction, so the light is not concentrated. It only costs $2-3 to make a solar bottle bulb that is bringing light to dark homes. This simple innovation is not perfect- the water needs to be replaced every five years and obviously without any provision for energy storage, the bulb will not work at night. But the advantages are overwhelming for communities that are deprived of daylight. It is surprisingly effective, using cheap and locally available materials that allows the poor in these settlements to use their homes more effectively. The bulb does not produce any harmful pollutants and also reduces the dangers from faulty and temporary electrical connections that cause devastating fires.

This project and its success is a great example of the ‘market-based’ solutions that should be pursued for socio-economic problems worldwide, strategies that are smart, effective & resourceful

Enjoy barbecue with friends and family when the evenings and weekends are free. So, if you also want to add a barbecue grill area to your home’s outdoor, take a look at these cool ideas below:

 

 

1. Give It a Vintage Look 

2. Place The Grill Inside a Corrugated Metal Shed

3. Accompany The Grill with a Built-In Bench

4. Build a Concrete Table 

5. Go for An All Stone Grilling Area 

6. Build a Two Level Island for The Grill to Combine Cooking and Serving

7. Install a TV Screen for Yet More Entertainment

8. Install The Grill On a Deck

9. Go For All White Appliances

10. Install The Grill in a Niche Enclosure

 

11. Design in a Rustic Way

12. Build a Pergola

13. Design with Moroccan Theme

14. Hang Strings of Lights for Making Everthing Magical

15. Get Inspiration from a Surf Shack for a Fun Outlook

 

Items needed:

1 cup of water

1/4 cup of brown sugar

1 gram of yeast

1 2-liter bottle

 

HOW:

Cut the plastic bottle in half. Mix brown sugar with hot water. Let cool. When cold, pour in the bottom half of the bottle. Add the yeast. No need to mix. It creates carbon dioxide, which attracts mosquitoes. Place the funnel part, upside down, into the other half of the bottle, taping them together if desired. Wrap the bottle with something black, leaving the top uncovered, and place it outside in an area away from your normal gathering area. (Mosquitoes are also drawn to the color black.)

 

Note:

Change the solution every 2 weeks for continuous control.

 

 

No matter how much of a clean freak you tend to be, the stenches and odors of everyday life are unavoidable. But don’t let that get you down — there’s often an easy, homemade way to dispel stink from every area in your home.

 

Stinky trash

Wash indoor and outdoor trash cans with hot soapy water to remove smelly bits and debris. Leave a couple of used fabric softener sheets in the bottom of your kitchen trash can and compactor to absorb odors.

 

A burnt-on food spill

If food from a casserole dish bubbles over onto the stovetop or oven floor, sprinkle salt on the drips to absorb the burned smell (this will also make it easier to clean up later).

 

A musty freezer

Place a clean sock filled with dry coffee grounds inside to deodorize this pesky spot in your kitchen.

 

A smelly microwave

The awful stench of burnt popcorn seems to hang around forever, but it eventually disperses. To speed up the process, fill a large microwave-safe bowl with 1 1/2 cups water and three or four chopped lemons along with a fragrant spice, like cloves. Bring to a boil in the microwave, and then leave it to steam inside for 15 minutes (until the water cools down and can be removed safely). Leave the door ajar for an hour or so to air the microwave out.

 

A foul dishwasher

Check that the drain hose isn’t crimped, and look in the bottom of the machine for bits of food and gunk. Then, pour a gallon of household vinegar in the bottom, let it sit for an hour or so, and run the washer through a full cycle. If the odor is still strong, call a plumber. It could potentially be a hazardous problem that needs to be remedied by a pro.

 

Rancid wooden cutting boards and counters

Scub the wood with a mixture of lemon juice and baking soda or salt. Rinse well and season with mineral oil.

 

A pungent kitchen

While cooking sharp-smelling items, like fish or cabbage, place a small bowl of white vinegar on the stove to absorb the odor. To stop offensive fridge smells, pour baking soda into a plastic margarine tub and poke holes in the lid; change as often as needed. Wipe down fridge walls with white vinegar to get rid of any lingering odors.

 

A sour-smelling garbage disposal

Freshen it by throwing in lemon or lime rinds while it’s running, followed by lots of cold water.

 

The toilet

When this frequently used bathroom fixture needs deodorizing, pour 1 cup of household vinegar into the bowl and let it stand for at least 5 minutes. Scrub briskly and flush.

 

Not-so-fresh bathroom air

Dab essential oil (cinnamon or orange) onto cotton balls, and place them in a small bowl on a shelf. Put matches in a pretty basket near the toilet for handy use.

 

Dingy carpeting

To quickly deodorize a smelly rug, sprinkle a box of baking soda over it, and let settle into the fibers for 30 minutes. Then, vacuum it up.

 

A musty mattress

Spray with a disinfectant like Lysol to kill the bacteria that causes odors. In between cleanings, sprinkle some baking soda onto the mattress, wait 15 minutes, and vacuum.

 

A dank basement

Open containers of activated charcoal (look for it at pet stores) absorb moisture, so they help fight mildew smells. If you find mold and mildew is a major problem, look into getting a dehumidifier.

 

A stale closet

Hanging clean socks filled with dry coffee grounds works here, too.

 

A smelly pet

Guests are about to arrive and you suddenly realize your pooch or kitty doesn’t smell so pleasant. For a quick fix (until bath time), lightly sprinkle their fur with baking soda, rub it in, and then brush out.

Do you want a bookcase in your home in which you can display your beloved and cherished book collection? If yes then you can get one installed at any unused space in your home. For finding out that place, take a look at the ideas below:

Utilize The Space Under The Stairs

 

 

Build a Bookcase Around Your Bed

Claim The Space Along The Window Seat

 

Hack The Space of Staircase Landing

 

Build It Above The Breakfast Nook Seating

 

Carve Out a Space in Kneel Walls

 

Claim The Space Under The Bed

 

Book Lovers Would Love to Have One Bookcase in The Bathroom Too

Add a Bookcase to The TV Wall

Swap Any Door with a Bookcase

 

Get a Bookshelf in Your Kitchen

Use The Unused Space of Your Staircase Wall

Universal design is not, as some would think, strictly for the elderly or disabled. The concept of universal design is to make living and work spaces equally comfortable, safe, and accessible for all, regardless of height or physical ability. These ideas might help make a home safer for an older resident, but they’re pretty smart for homeowners of all ages.

 

Easy on the Hands. You probably don’t think much about turning a doorknob, but it can actually be quite a chore, even painful, for someone with arthritis or other conditions. Simply replacing doorknobs with lever-style hardware can make life easier for residents. Levers are also best on faucets, and illuminated rocker switches are better than the standard toggle light switches.

 

Friendly Floors. Slippery surfaces are not the only danger underfoot, although they’re the most obvious. All floors should be made slip-resistant, such as by adding nonskid mats under area rugs (or getting rid of the area rugs completely). Trips are as dangerous as slips, so eliminate trip points like thresholds wherever possible, or reduce their height. For those who use walkers, adds Cratsley, low-pile carpeting is safest so the walker doesn’t catch on deep pile and cause a fall.

 

Safe Stairs. For older people living on more than one level, stairs can be especially dangerous. Handrails are a must, on both sides of the staircase if possible. Lighting is also critical, says Cratsley, so make sure the entire stairway is well lit from top to bottom. Clearly defined steps that show where the edge of the tread is can help prevent falls.

 

A Well-Lighted Place. The staircase isn’t the only part of a home that needs good lighting. A dark room is an invitation to a bump or a fall, so make sure there’s adequate lighting in every room, hallway, and doorway. Entryways are especially dangerous if not well lit.

 

Landing Places. Fumbling with keys, packages, the mail — all can distract and unbalance someone entering or exiting a home. In addition to providing lighting at entryways be sure to have a table, bench, or other surface nearby for putting things down.

 

Better Baths. Most people think of shower grab bars as the way to make bathing safer. There are other ways to help ensure safety in the bath, says Cratsley. Think about adding grab bars by the toilet, too, or other places in the room where someone may need a helping hand. A step-in shower is safer than a tub, but if that’s not possible add grab bars that help someone getting in and out. A single-handled faucet control reduces the chances of scalding at the sink, and a pressure-balanced control does the same in the shower. A hand-held showerhead is often easier to use for someone with limited mobility than a fixed showerhead