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5 Tips for Better Indoor Air Quality

Posted on April 04, 2017 by James Florence

Spring has arrived once again to the Bay Area—the sun is shining, the flowers are blooming and, as a result, many local inhabitants are sniffling and sneezing. If you’re one of them, going outdoors during this time of year can be an unpleasant experience. Fortunately, even though you can’t control the outside air, there’s plenty you can do to improve air quality inside of your home. Here are five tips for creating an allergy-free haven:

1. Get a good air filter (and replace it regularly). This is the cornerstone of indoor air quality. For most homes, a mid-grade MERV 9 filter will do nicely, but if you have extreme sensitivities, consider upgrading to a MERV 13 filter: a four-inch pleated model that removes airborne particles down to the level of viruses and bacterium. Read more

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Posted in: Health Tips, Home Tips
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Summer Fungus: Preventing Mold in the Off-Season

Posted on April 26, 2016 by James Florence

Mold is a common household problem during the winter, when the moist, rainy weather creates ideal conditions for fungi to flourish. While the arrival of summer tends to reverse these conditions, in some residences, mold is nonetheless a year-round problem. For example, if your home is poorly ventilated or situated in a humid or heavily shaded location (i.e. coastal or dense forest), the warm summer climate may do little to mitigate mold, which means you’ll need to take proactive measures to combat it. Read more

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Posted in: Home Tips
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In-Home Danger Zones: Five Critical Tests to Ensure Safety

Posted on November 03, 2015 by James Florence

If you’re like most people, you think of your home as your sanctuary—a refuge from the uncertainties of the outside world. However, you may not realize just how many dangers can be present within its very walls. Hazardous substances like mold, lead and asbestos are present in many United States homes, often without the homeowners’ awareness. Since the only way to identify these threats is with professional inspection, you should consider having the following tests performed in your home:

1. Mold testing
When mold develops inside a home, it’s typically due to an excess of moisture, whether from a slow leak, poor ventilation or as a secondary effect of catastrophic water damage. Read more

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Posted in: Consumers, Home Tips
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Diamond Certified Experts: Heating and Cooling System Tips

Posted on April 14, 2015 by James Florence

Temperature regulation and air quality are key concerns in any indoor environment, which is why, in addition to keeping your home’s heating and cooling systems functional, you’ll want them working as efficiently as possible. We’ve asked five Diamond Certified Expert Contributors to share their tips on basic HVAC maintenance and troubleshooting.

1. Know the location of your furnace filter: Kim Haddon of Haddon Heating & Cooling
While routine furnace filter replacement is often neglected, for some, the problem starts with locating the filter in the first place. If you don’t know where your furnace filter is, there are a few common places to check, including the furnace blower compartment, an external compartment of the furnace, Read more

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Posted in: Diamond Certified Experts, Home Tips
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Happy Spring and Happy Scrubbing

Posted on March 27, 2012 by Chris Bjorklund

When was the last time you vacuumed under and behind your refrigerator? It’s amazing how much crud builds up back there, as I discovered while getting a start on my spring cleaning. As I scrubbed away, I began thinking about the origin of this annual ritual.

To find out more, I called Ernie Andrade, owner of Allbright Maintenance Services, a Diamond Certified company. He told me that the idea originated in China. The Chinese clean homes in anticipation of the New Year. A thorough cleaning eliminates bad luck and misfortune from the previous year. In Jewish custom, Passover, which comes around April, is a time of house cleaning as well. And when homes were heated with coal, Read more

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Posted in: Home Tips, Savvy Tips
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Happy Spring and Happy Scrubbing

Posted on March 01, 2010 by Chris Bjorklund

 
When was the last time you vacuumed under and behind your refrigerator? It’s amazing how much crud builds up back there, as I discovered while getting a start on my spring cleaning.  As I scrubbed away, I began thinking about the origin of this annual ritual.
 
The idea originated in China. The Chinese clean homes in anticipation of the New Year. A thorough cleaning eliminates bad luck and misfortune from the previous year. In Jewish custom, Passover, which comes around April, is a time of house cleaning as well. And when homes were heated with coal, wood and oils in the winter, families waited until spring to remove soot, ash, Read more

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Posted in: Landscaping Tips
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