Posts by James Florence

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5 Factors for Tankless Water Heater Installation

Posted on September 26, 2017 by James Florence

These days, more and more Bay Area homeowners are ditching their old water heaters for cutting-edge tankless models. Because of their advanced technology, tankless water heaters boast an array of practical benefits, not the least of which is a virtually endless supply of hot water. However, going tankless involves more than simply swapping the old for the new, as there are often functionality and compatibility concerns that need to be addressed before and during installation.

Here are five factors to consider when installing a tankless water heater:

1. Unit capacity
While sizing a conventional water heater mainly comes down to tank storage capacity, with a tankless unit, it’s a bit more complex. Read more

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Posted in: Plumbing
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Video: Engine Fluid Maintenance

Posted on September 14, 2017 by James Florence

Earlier this week, we posted an article featuring expert tips on auto engine maintenance. One of the aspects mentioned was the importance of changing and monitoring engine oil and transmission fluid. To learn more about this crucial component of vehicle care, watch this video by Diamond Certified Expert Contributor Ken DeMartini of Japan Auto Repair, Inc.

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Posted in: Auto Tips, Diamond Certified Experts
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Diamond Certified Experts: Under the Hood

Posted on September 12, 2017 by James Florence

A vehicle has several components that need to be maintained, from tires to brakes to suspension. However, the most critical of these components are found under the hood—namely the engine and transmission. We’ve asked eight Diamond Certified Expert Contributors to give their tips on caring for these vital organs of vehicle operation.

 

Fluids

Fluids are the lifeblood of the engine, providing the necessary cooling and lubrication to allow its moving parts to function safely and smoothly. That’s why ongoing fluid maintenance is crucial for maximizing engine lifespan. Ken DeMartini of Japan Auto Repair, Inc. says this starts with engine oil. “One of the most important aspects of vehicle maintenance is having your oil changed at regular intervals—after all, Read more

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Posted in: Automotive, Auto Tips, Diamond Certified Experts
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Creating a Fire-Safe Defensible Space

Posted on September 08, 2017 by James Florence

One of the most critical aspects of fire safety is creating a “defensible space” around your home: a 100-foot radius of property that’s specifically maintained to minimize fire risks. However, defensible space is often misunderstood—a lot of people think it merely consists of clearcutting all trees, shrubs and bushes within 100 feet of their homes, but this oversimplifies the matter. In reality, creating a defensible space involves a specific strategy.

A properly designed defensible space consists of two zones: Zone 1, which extends 30 feet from the house, and Zone 2, which extends 70 feet from Zone 1. In Zone 1, any dead vegetation should be removed or, in the case of grass and weeds, Read more

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Posted in: Home Tips, Landscaping Tips
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Yard-Wise: 6 Ways to Improve Your Property’s Exterior Efficiency

Posted on August 22, 2017 by James Florence

Like many Bay Area homeowners, you’ve probably taken measures to reduce your home’s water and energy usage, such as installing water-saving plumbing fixtures and switching to LED lighting. However, you may have overlooked another part of your property: your yard. From your garden to your pool, there are several areas where you can save water and energy by improving your exterior efficiency. Consider the following measures:

Improve irrigation
If you’re using an outdated sprinkler system to water your lawn and garden, you may be wasting water every day. Traditional sprinkler heads are known for their inefficiency, losing a substantial amount of the water they distribute to wind and sun evaporation. Fortunately, you can easily upgrade your system for a surprisingly low cost. Read more

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Posted in: Energy Efficiency, Landscaping Tips
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Video: How to Patch Drywall

Posted on August 14, 2017 by James Florence

Earlier this week, we posted an article featuring expert tips on DIY home maintenance. One of the tips was a step-by-step procedure for repairing a damaged area of drywall. To see this procedure demonstrated firsthand, watch this video by Diamond Certified Expert Contributor Charles Irwin of Irwin Construction.

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Posted in: Diamond Certified Experts
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Diamond Certified Experts: Home Maintenance How-Tos, Volume 2

Posted on August 14, 2017 by James Florence

Previously, we published a compilation of DIY home maintenance how-tos provided by Diamond Certified Expert Contributors. Here’s another batch of useful home maintenance how-tos from the pros:

How to Fix a Running Toilet: Gifford Teeple of A Reliable Handyman

An intermittently running toilet may seem like a mere annoyance, but it’s actually wasting water and costing you money. Typically, this issue can be resolved by replacing the “flapper” that covers the fill valve at the bottom of the tank—an easy, no-tools-needed task that just about anyone can do. Follow these steps:

  1. Turn off the water to the toilet at the shut-off valve, which is located on the wall near the toilet.
  2. Read more

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Posted in: DIY Home Repair, Diamond Certified Experts
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