Simple Deck Design Ideas to Improve Your Outdoor Space

Simple Deck Design Ideas to Improve Your Outdoor Space

Simple Deck Design Ideas to Improve Your Outdoor SpaceBeautify Your Deck and Spruce Up Your Backyard!

Creating the perfect outdoor space is easier than you think! If you’re looking to spruce up your backyard and beef up your home’s curb appeal – your deck and its surrounding space is the best place to start. But there are a lot of different ways to bring your vision for your outdoor living space to life. That’s why we recommend you stick to a simple formula for remodeling your home’s backyard space. Simple deck design ideas work best – especially when combined with new doors and stone accents!

Fresh Decks Let You Live Your Best Life Outdoors!

When you’re designing (or redesigning) your deck, you should choose products that seamlessly blend simple designs and tech. The ideal decking product is durable, easy to install, and looks sharp no matter the deck’s style. Whether you’re completing the project yourself or hiring out a contractor, the material should work within your design! Products such as Timbertech AZEK decking provide the best variety of colors, wood grains, and widths to bring any design to life.

We recommend you start by deciding on color – after all, your deck’s hue should speak to you! From there, you can decide on specific color combinations, shades, and even special wood grain patterns. By changing your decking’s highlights or lowlights, you can create a wide range of coloring. From there, it’s time to decide on your boards’ width. You don’t have to feel pigeonholed into “standard” sized boards anymore, either! Nowadays, wider boards are very trendy – and narrower boards can give your deck a coastal vibe. Don’t be afraid to mix and match board sizes either, the right combos can give your deck a uniquely modern look!

Once you’ve designed your deck around these simple ideas, don’t forget the railing! The right rail makes the perfect pairing to a deftly-designed deck. Before you add railing, we recommend considering these factors first:

  • Consider the architectural style and color story of your existing home. Which decking and railing combos would best complement them?
  • If you’re planning for a deck with an adventurous design, have you found a contractor that has experience with complex builds? If you’re DIYing – do you feel comfortable doing it yourself?
  • When it comes to railing, are you looking to keep your views unobstructed with something minimal or make a bold style statement?
  • Which railing profile do you prefer: classic millwork, modern and minimalist, or a sleek drink rail?

After you’ve answered those questions, you’re ready to build that deck!

 

Perfect Views with Sliding Glass Doors

Adding sliding doors to your deck is great for accenting backyard and improving your outdoor panoramas!  Massive openings are possible with sliding doors. They open up your home and create a stronger connection to nature and the outdoors. Large openings are also perfect for high traffic areas like the passageway leading to a patio during a backyard get together. Even better – furniture and other household items can be placed near a sliding door.

If you’re looking for a sleek, sharp, and simple look – try Marvin’s black sliding door patio series! This modern, yet subdued tone works well with many different shades of exterior siding and decking. Or, if you’re looking for something more upbeat and contemporary, try their urban patio series. These sliding doors offer defined lines and urbane style for any home!

 

A Completed Cultured Stone Look

Once your deck and doors are taken care of, there’s one last simple design idea to tie your backyard space together! A stone pathway or even a stone firepit are the best “last touches” for your outdoor getaway. But don’t worry about feeling tied to natural stone, which can be costly and difficult to work with. Manufactured stone veneers, such as Cultured Stone, are the perfect alternative! These products mirror the look and feel of natural stone, with superior performance and versatility.

Once you’ve customized your space, the details add all the warmth and togetherness it needs. And nothing imbues your outdoor space with comfort quite like a fireplace. Signature fireplace surrounds or pit designs can tie your whole backyard together. Tastefully-designed pathways add simple elegance and make wandering your outdoor space a dream!

 

Though redesigning or remodeling your home’s backyard space can seem daunting – it really isn’t! By taking it one step at a time and having a defined plan with simple, versatile designs, you can get it done. If you need help getting your design started, or need to find the best supplies, contact our helpful team!

How to Choose Replacement Windows

How to Choose Replacement Windows

How to Choose Replacement Windows

The autumn season is the perfect time to swap out drafty old windows with new energy efficient ones. Investing in replacement windows now will equal savings on heating costs all winter long—and beyond. But how do you choose replacement windows in the first place?

One shortcut is to visit your local GNH Lumber to discuss your window replacement project with our seasoned experts.

Click here to get started now.

To help you choose just the right windows for your home and budget, we recommend considering some common cost-saving options and answering a few common questions beforehand:

1) PLANNING

Start by considering which windows you want to replace. Do you want to replace all of them, one floor at a time, or just individual units that will save energy and add convenience to a particular room in your home?

2) BUDGET

Prepare a preliminary budget. This will help you determine how many windows you can replace with the styles, features, and materials you want. Pay particular attention to the window’s thermal performance since this will factor into the cost. Windows that qualify for tax rebates may cost more initially but these costs are offset by rebates and greater energy savings over time!

3) APPLICATION 

What do you want your new windows to do? Are they architectural design features or will they provide specific functionality? Do you want the windows to open and close? How they should operate? Vinyl windows like Smarter Windows from GNH Lumber will provide lower maintenance, greater convenience, and higher energy performance than most wood windows.

4) ENERGY EFFICIENCY 

Finally, discuss energy-efficient window options (like standard insulated glass and low-e glass) with the knowledgeable staff at GNH Lumber. Don’t forget to work the additional cost of these features into the context of estimated savings on your heating and cooling bills. Do the expected savings justify the extra cost? Vinyl window frames are less expensive and do provide more insulation qualities.

Sources: http://www.smarterwindows.com/Page/How_to_Buy_Replacement_Windows

How to Replace Windows in Zones

How to Replace Windows in Zones

How to Replace Windows in Zones

Should you replace windows in zones?

Replacement windows can save you as much as 15% on your energy bills while reducing wear and tear on heating and cooling systems. Plus, updated windows will improve your quality of life by introducing more light and fresh air to your favorite room or home office.

If you’re overwhelmed by the idea of a full window replacement, don’t worry. You don’t have to replace every single window in your home to start enjoying beauty, function, and energy-savings. Instead, you can replace windows one zone at a time.

Explore replacement Marvin windows in a wide range of styles at GNH Lumber! Simply request a project quote today

Want to learn more about the benefits of new windows? Get the FREE guide!

Window Replacement by the Zone

Now is the perfect time to replace your home’s older or malfunctioning windows before the chill of autumn comes and begins stealing away precious heating dollars. But how do you know which windows need replacing? Some signs, such as condensation or cosmetic damage, might not need replacement at all and are actually perfectly normal. Others, like water stains and wood rot, need immediate replacement.

Knowing the signs that require prompt attention versus those that can be easily fixed can help you evaluate whether and how soon a replacement is needed. This will help you replace windows in “zones” for a more targeted, cost-effective approach.

Remember, you don’t have to replace every single window in your home in order to make a dramatic improvement in your home’s style, airflow, and energy savings!

Here’s our guide to evaluating your home’s overall window health and creating “zones” for targeted window replacement.

How to Replace Windows in Zones

Zone #1 – Immediate Attention Needed

Sometimes replacement windows are non-negotiable, especially when they greatly compromise your home’s energy-efficiency and/or security. Look for these signs that you’re in the “red” zone:

  • WATER DAMAGE – Water between glass panes, leaking, water stains or evidence of wood rot can be signs excess moisture is accumulating where you cannot see it, which means your windows are no longer effective. This can lead to mold, mildew, warping, or structural damage.
  • COMPROMISED SECURITY – As entry points into your home, you should address broken windows immediately.

 

Zone #2 – Time to Investigate

Sometimes replacement isn’t immediately necessary, although it would still help with ease of operation and climate control. Here are some warning signs for windows you should keep an eye on:

  • FAULTY OPERATION – Difficulty opening or closing, sticking sash and pesky operational issues can sometimes be solved with a thorough cleaning or small repair. However, these can also be signs that parts are nearing the end of their lifespan.
  • LESS CLIMATE CONTROL – New windows can get rid of drafts to make rooms more comfortable. But if the time isn’t right, replacement can wait!

 

Zone #3 – No Need to Replace

Some of your home’s windows may not need replacing at all! Don’t mistake these signs for critical damage. They are likely normal and can be corrected during routine maintenance:

  • CONDENSATION – Condensation is perfectly normal. It simply indicates the presence of humidity, which means your windows are doing their job and holding heat inside your home. There are many easy ways to remove condensation that don’t involve replacement. Read more at Marvin.com/condensation.
  • COSMETIC ISSUES – Issues like chipped paint, tarnished hardware, and dirty weather stripping can be addressed on your schedule with routine care and maintenance.

By dividing your home into zones using the evaluation methods above, you can make the right window replacements now while keeping less urgent updates on the back-burner for a later date.

What are Some Advantages to Choosing Double Hung Windows?

What are Some Advantages to Choosing Double Hung Windows?

What are Some Advantages to Choosing Double Hung Windows?

Have you considered updating or adding double hung windows? Fall is here, soon to be followed by winter. Now’s the time to prepare your home from bitter cold temperatures.

Your windows may appear operational, but if they whistle, rattle or leak, then you’re likely losing money in heating costs. The same is true of your brittle or cracked weather-stripping. Small leaks, cracks and rattles add up to a big difference in your monthly utility bills.

If it’s time to update your windows, consider double hung replacements. There are many advantages to the design of the window, including easy cleaning and care. In addition, double hung windows can improve energy-efficiency and curb appeal, too.


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Here are some of the major advantages of double hung windows from HomeAdvisor.com:

  • Superior Ventilation. They provide great ventilation capabilities and the ability to control airflow. For maximum ventilation, you simply open both top and bottom sashes – the bottom sash will let in cool, fresh air, while the top sash will allow warm indoor air to be expelled through it.
  • Aesthetically Adaptable. Its traditional look can match any home style. In fact, double hung windows are known for their classic appeal, which makes them suitable for any home or room. They also come in a variety of styles, sizes, colors, and finishes.
  • Easy to Maintain. These windows often come with tilt-out sashes that make cleaning easier, as you can clean both the interior and exterior from inside your home. Some even have removable sashes.
  • Addition Friendly. They are ideal for the easy fitting of air conditioners and screens. Because most units are designed to slide up and down instead of cranking out or sliding to the side, they can safely hold AC units, and allow for their easy removal, as needed.
  • Energy-Efficient. Aside from the superior ventilation mentioned earlier, this type of window brings in a generous amount of natural light. By choosing Low-E glass with gas fill you can further enhance savings on your energy costs.

For all these reasons and more, you should seriously consider double hung windows as an option when choosing replacement windows for your home.


Get Your Double Hung Windows Today!

The experts at GNH Lumber are here to answer your questions, provide product suggestions and tips for each step of your window replacement project! Click here to get started.

Source: http://www.homeadvisorhomesource.com/double-hung-window-benefits/

How to Care for Vinyl Windows

How to Care for Vinyl Windows: “Dos and Don’ts”

Wondering how to care for vinyl windows? Maybe you’re considering new vinyl windows for your home and want to learn what kind of care they require.

Atrium windows and doors are designed for easy care and maintenance. Just a tiny bit of elbow grease from time to time will extend the life and beauty of your windows and doors.

Below are some quick and basic tips for caring for your Atrium windows and doors.

Click here to get started on your window replacement project.

Here are a few easy care and maintenance tips to keep in mind to extend the life and performance of your vinyl windows:

Product Care “Dos”

  • Do vacuum soil and debris from the sill or track prior to washing.
  • Do use a mixture of mild dish soap or any non-abrasive soap and water to gently clean window and door frames.
  • Do rinse thoroughly and dry with a soft absorbent cloth.
  • Do make sure any weep holes are clear of obstruction and draining properly.
  • Do remove the screens and wash them with a soft brush on a flat surface with mild dish soap and water.
  • Do periodically check the weather stripping around all window and door sashes.
  • Do occasionally lubricate all moving parts, including rollers and tracks with a silicone-based lubrication (any lubrication should be tested on an unseen part of the window to ensure no staining)

Product Care “Don’ts”

  • Don’t use abrasive or caustic cleaners or solvents as they may damage the finish of your windows and doors.
  • Don’t wash windows in direct sunlight, if possible.
  • Don’t use a high-pressure spray to wash the windows as it may damage the insulation and glass seal.
  • Don’t use sharp instruments or abrasive pads to clean the glass.
  • Don’t attach anything to the glass, such as masking tape, as heat from the sun may bake the adhesive into the glass.
  • Don’t use a silicone spray on plastic parts as it may damage them; use a non-wax furniture polish instead.

Sources: https://www.atrium.com/homeowners/window-basics/understanding-condensation/

How to Measure Windows

How to Measure Windows

How to Measure WindowsIf you’re going to install replacement windows, it pays to measure windows correctly the first time and avoid the headache of placing an incorrect order.

How to Measure Windows 101:

 

  1. Always measure the entire window, not just the glass! This includes the frame and trim as well as the window glass. Record your measurements to the nearest 1/16 inch.
  2. When recording measurements, follow the format “width by length.” For example, a window that is 63 inches wide and 27 inches long is recorded as “63 x 27.” A window that is 37 inches wide and 55 inches long is recorded as “37 x 55.”
  3. Measure windows width from left edge to the right edge.
  4. Measure windows height from top edge to the bottom edge.
  1. Take an additional set of measurements inside the window frame. Since a window can have several steps within the frame, measure left to right at the widest place. Measure the width at the top, middle and the bottom, and use the smallest of the three measurements as the inside width.
  2. Measure the window length at the left side, the center and the right side inside the window frame and record the smallest of these as the inside length measurement.
  3. Record the window outside measurements from the far left edge of the window frame to the far right edge. Measure the outside length measurement as from the top of the window frame to the bottom of the frame.
  4. Measure the width of the trim that surrounds the window. The trim on the sides may be different from the top and bottom – so measure each part.
  5. Take a picture of a multi-paned window and record the measurements on the print to eliminate confusion. Record the overall window width and length, both inside and outside the frame. Measure and record the width and length of each window section and the measurements of any subsections. For example, the overall the window may be 60 x 20, composed of two windows 30 x 20.

A helpful overview of the window replacement process from Marvin Windows: