LESLIE: Now we’ve got Eleanor in Virginia on the line with a question about dark spots on deck. How can we help you today?
ELEANOR: We have Trex Decking on our – for our deck, which is – and also the porch – screened-in porch. But on the deck – which is not covered by any roof or anything like that; it’s all open to the environment. We have spots on that, which are – it’s a gray-color decking. And we have these dark spots all over it. Almost kind of look like a mold. And we do not know what it’s caused by.
My husband has tried to use a power washer with the soap that is recommended for that power washer. Also bleach with a scrub brush. He has – he can get it lightened but not totally gone. And we’re wondering if there’s – if you’ve ever heard of that with Trex Decking and have any suggestions.
TOM: Yeah. I mean some of the composite materials out there do have some wood-fiber component and they will grow algae, which is most likely what you’re seeing with those dark spots on deck.
Now, one of the treatments that we would recommend is a product called JOMAX – J-O-M-A-X. And JOMAX actually has a deck wash. And JOMAX is a detergent that also gets mixed with bleach, gets applied to the deck. You let it sit for 15 to 20 minutes and then you scrub it off.
I would be very careful with the power washer except for just rinsing purposes. Because too much pressure can actually ruin that deck.
Now, another possibility is that those dark spots on deck are what’s called “artillery fungus.” They kind of look like a shotgun kind of a pellet size. Getting rid of artillery fungus is particularly difficult. And one of the sources of it is mulch. Do you have mulch around your house or around your yard?
TOM: Well, sometimes the mulch that’s sort of the ground much – the shredded bark mulch – will contain artillery fungus. And once that gets out and attaches to surfaces like decks or sometimes even cars, it’s really, really difficult to get rid of it. So, if that is what’s going on, we would recommend that you don’t do that again. Don’t put the shredded mulch back on. Only use the bark mulch that’s in pieces. That seems to not have the issue. It’s the shredded mulch that attracts and contains artillery fungus.
I would try the JOMAX Deck Wash and Cleaner. I think you’ll have better success with that than you did with straight bleach, OK?
TOM: Alright. Good luck with that project. Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT888-MONEY-PIT.Call Send SMS Add to Skype You’ll need Skype CreditFree via Skype
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From Source Article: moneypit.com
Want to do something different for your 4th of July celebration this year? Turn a ‘progressive dinner party’ on its ear and host a traveling BBQ instead! You’ll combine some interactive fun to go along with the good eats and invite your friends and neighbors to join in the celebration.
Have veggies and dips at one house, those ever-popular picnic salads at the next, and fire up the grill at the 4th house for some good old-fashioned hamburgers and hotdogs. Cap off the meal at the last house with an ice cream sundae bar. Finish off your day by enjoying the fireworks as a group.
Here’s everything you’ll need to pull off a truly spectacular celebration:Get your red, white and blue on
Red, white & blue decorations put your guests in a patriotic mood. Encourage each host to decorate their yard for the occasion. You could even hold a ‘Patriot’s Favorite’ vote to choose the crowd favorite. Make these cute star wands for all the entrants and provide a super-sized version for the winner!
Get the kids in on the action by having a group of them form an assembly line to make these adorable (and handy!) 4th of July utensil packets.House #1 – Let’s get this party started!
Start your traveling BBQ off with finger foods and ice cold drinks. How about a big platter of fresh veggies with a choice of dips and hummus? Or try Inside-Out Veggie Dip with the dip stuffed inside hollowed out vegetables.
Offer an assortment of crunchy chips and crackers to go with the dips, too. Colorful disposable bowls will let your guests mingle while they munch. Bowls do a better job of corraling dip and dippers than plates.
Serve up big pitchers of icy cold drinks to wash down the appetizers. Iced tea is a perennial favorite, as is lemonade. Looking for something a little more festive? Strawberry lemonade is a pretty variation with a refreshingly sweet-tart flavor.House #2 – What’s a BBQ without a salad?
You could serve a traditional potato salad, but why not mix it up with a Red, White & Blue Potato Salad? Made with new or fingerling potatoes, this version has a light lemon juice and olive oil dressing in place of a heavier mayo dressing. Make it the day before – it gets even yummier after marinating for a while!
Of course, if you’re having potato salad, someone is going to expect coleslaw! This unique Crunchy Cabbage & Peanut Slaw pairs cabbage with scallions, cilantro, peanuts, and a tangy Asian-inspired dressing. Broccoli slaw is another option and this Light & Easy Broccoli Salad is a healthier version of the mayo-heavy original.
Instead of corn-on-the-cob, serve this Fresh Corn Salad. It’s quick, easy, and delicious!
Serve a traditional Seven-Layer Salad in a Mason jar for a bit of nostalgic Americana style. Tie several strands of thin red or blue ribbon around the jar rim and leave long streamers hanging loose for a ‘fireworks’ look. Party-goers can take their jars with them to the next house to finish eating while the grilling begins.
Since the kids probably won’t spend as much time eating salad as the adults, keep them busy with a 4th of July scavenger hunt. Give each child a piece of paper with patriotic things to find: 7 red stripes, 6 white stripes, 13 white stars, something that’s solid blue, a 4, 1, two sevens, a 6, etc.
For younger children, provide a paper with picture outlines of stars, stripes, something red, something blue, etc. Provide crayons so they can fill in the outlines as they find each item.House #4 – It’s time to fire up the grill Photo credit: Skitterphoto / Pixabay
Put up a patriotic backdrop and provide plenty of costume pieces and printable 4th of July props (there are more here). Everyone can enjoy the ‘photo booth’ while the meats are cooking. Just make sure the booth is facing awayfrom the sun so squinting eyes won’t ruin the pictures.House #5 – And to top it off…
Set up a DIY ice cream sundae bar. Vanilla ice cream balls, squeeze bottles of toppings, a range of add-ins… Pretty much anything sweet goes with ice cream! Use these patriotic sundae bar printables to label the items on your all-American dessert bar.
Don’t forget the red, white, and blue toppings! We suggest fresh strawberry topping, fresh blueberries cooked with a little sugar and lemon just until they pop, and whipped cream. The fruit toppings are too chunky for squeeze bottles, so serve them in small canning jars with spoons. Oh! And don’t forget the red, white, and blue 4th of July sprinkles!
For those who can’t eat dairy or are watching their calories, offer these adorable Fireworks Fruit Kabobs.The Grand Finale!
Organize a carpool to get everyone to a favorite spot for watching your community’s Independence Day light show. Ask for volunteers to bring folding chairs, lawn blankets, water, and other essentials. A sign-up sheet will help keep things organized and make sure nothing is forgotten – either when going or coming back. Now congratulate yourselves for a holiday well-celebrated and fun well-shared!
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From Source Article: moneypit.com
This week, many of us have full houses and tightly timed schedules for getting a beautiful, bountiful Holiday feast on the table. All this activity may spark some unplanned home emergencies, so while you’re giving thanks for everything that goes right, be prepared to act in case any of the following go wrong.
If your garbage disposal goes on the fritz right when you need it most, turn off the electrical circuit that operates the disposal. Then use a flashlight and tongs to pull out any obstructing objects. If that doesn’t work, insert an Allen wrench in the base of the disposal and rotate clockwise and counterclockwise until the object dislodges. Once the disposal is clear and ready for use, be sure to push the reset button on its base.Toilet turmoil
To unclog a toilet, turn off the water at the shutoff valve (typically located behind the base of the toilet) and use a plunger over the drain hole rapidly about a dozen times, repeating if necessary. If that doesn’t work, insert the corkscrew end of a toilet auger into the drain hole to dislodge the obstruction. Slowly pull it out and do not attempt a repeated effort at flushing it down!
If your dishwasher goes on strike right after twenty of your closest relatives and friends have finished dinner, check to make sure the spray arm isn’t blocked by large dishes that are standing in the way of rinsing. Double-check the water temperature, and make a quick adjustment at the water heater if water isn’t hot enough (at least 140 degrees Fahrenheit). Lastly, use a granular detergent if your home has hard water and a liquid or gel detergent if your home has soft water.Hot water help
If your hot water calls it quits when you’ve still got company waiting for a shower, there’s not a lot you can do but have them wait. But to avoid cold showers in the first place, take a few minutes to install water-saving shower heads before visitors arrive. Stagger and set time limits on showers for guests and family members, and run washing machines and dishwashers at night while guests are sleeping. Also consider installing a tankless hot water heater, which provides little to no waiting time for a hot shower!
Electricity takes a timeout
First, turn off all appliances, such as hair dryers or microwaves that may have triggered the outage. When working with a circuit breaker (or fuse), use one hand while keeping the other at your side. Go to the main electrical service panel and open the door. Look for the circuit breaker that is in the “off” position (it will be flipped in the opposite direction from the others) and switch it back to the “on” position. Plug appliances back in one at a time so the circuit doesn’t trip again.Kitchen emergencies
For a grease fire, a quick solution is to pour a box of baking soda directly over the flames. Never douse with water! Always keep a fire extinguisher within reach, and regularly check the gauge to make sure it’s operable and ready in the event of a kitchen fire.
From Source Article: moneypit.com