Fall Home Improvement Solutions for the Yard, Garage & Indoors

Whether you spend a lot of time working on your yard or taking care of your house, you will need the right tools for the fall and winter season to keep everything in tip-top shape. Pack, cover, fix, optimize and work in a variety of different capacities with these fall home improvement solutions for your yard, garage and home.

Get Your Yard Ready for Fall
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Rolling Outdoor Cushion Storage
Store and protect your outdoor cushions with this rolling storage solution. The strong bag is made of heavy-duty polyester, has a zip closure, two rolling wheels and large handles to help you move it around easily.
Air Conditioner Covers
Air conditioners are expensive…don’t let fall and winter conditions destroy them! These covers, designed to fit most window or central air units, prevent snow, ice and dirt from causing rust. Covers have elastic edges.
No-Slip Ice Carpets
Minimize the risk of dangerous falls on icy or snowy surfaces with No-Slip Ice Carpets. Simply roll out this mat and you can walk safely on snow-laden pathways or steps, providing traction where you need it most.

Useful Gear for the Garage
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Rolling Work Seat with Built-In Toolbox
This rolling work seat has a reinforced, vinyl-padded cushion and a three-drawer toolbox with roller bearing slides. It has two folding tool trays with magnetic pads and a rear tray that supports screwdrivers and pliers.
204-Pc. Super Drill Bit Set
This drill bit set has a bit for every purpose, all packed into a convenient hard plastic storage case. The case folds out to reveal four panels full of bits and accessories, each labeled with its size for easy organization.
40″ Cool Weave Folding Car Creeper
The car creeper makes working on your vehicle easy. It’s made with heavy-duty cool weave fabric on a steel frame. The breathable nylon fabric minimizes sweat and the soft foam pillow provides even more comfort.

Tools to Touch Up Your Home
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Wireless Inspection Scope
Gain access behind walls, inside pipes and other hard-to-reach areas with this wireless scope. It features an adjustable LED light and 3′ flexible camera extender with three attachments: magnetic, hook and mirror.
Stanley Tripod Flashlight
The tripod flashlight is great for emergencies, camping and DIY projects in awkward spaces. The flashlight’s articulated head directs the light right where you need it. Has a weather-resistant anodized aluminum case.
High Pressure Drain Cleaner
Use this drain cleaner to unclog sinks, tubs or showers. It uses compressed air to unclog most drains without the use of harmful chemicals. Pump the unit to compress the air, then pull the trigger to blast away the clog.

Signs Your Lawn is Toxic

You might not think of something as benign as your lawn in terms of being toxic or not, but the truth is that it can very well be the case. A lawn can be considered toxic for a number of reasons, but the results are always detrimental. Here are signs your lawn is toxic and what to do if it is.

bermuda grass

Sleepy Grass?One reason your lawn could be toxic is due to a type of vegetation known as sleepy grass. It?s found throughout the Midwest and in southern states like Texas and New Mexico as well as Hawaii. Sleepy grass prefers to grow in dry soil.

While it doesn?t look problematic, sleepy grass has a fungus in it which contains ergoline compounds. Lysergic acid amide is a good example of this. Scientists believe it is this fungus that causes the sedative effects in any mammals that ingest it. As the name suggests, they literally fall asleep.

Bermuda Grass?Bermuda grass is another example of a type of grass you want nowhere near your lawn, although it looks plain enough. The texture of Bermuda grass is indistinguishable from other common varieties. It has a grayish green color and a short build.

The plant isn?t actually from Bermuda. It?s an invasive species there and has caused all kinds of problems. Because it?s believed the grass traveled from Bermuda to America, it was given the name of the island.

This grass likes warmer environments, meaning it?s quite at home down south. It grows quickly and it?s extremely tough. Bermuda grass is great for sports fields because it can take damage and quickly recover. However, it?s also believed that Bermuda grass is quite toxic and, if you don?t like the way it looks, you?ll have a hard time ridding yourself of it. This is a very common type of grass in the south and Florida — a lawn care program in Pinellas County is a must! West central Florida is right off of the gulf and the weather stays warm all year yet we have plenty of rainfall which allows this plant to grow very rapidly.

Organochlorines?Unfortunately, sometimes you?re to blame for your yard being toxic. You add certain substances to your yard with the best of intentions, but these chemicals end up being the last thing they need. In the end, your yard becomes toxic.

Organochlorines are a good example. These chemicals include toxic compounds like aldrin, DDT, chloroform, tetrachloroethylene, PCBs, heptachlor and dieldrin.

These chemicals can have positive effects in terms of lawn care on a short term scale. However, over the long term, their presence can be destructive to all forms of life. If you have pets that enjoy your lawn, they?ll be especially at risk. Even you and your family can suffer the consequences of these chemicals. Your symptoms could include nausea, anemia, lung damage, convulsions, central nervous system damage, hypertension, and even cancer.

Solutions?Fortunately, there?s plenty you can do. First, learn to recognize the aforementioned toxic grass. The first step is knowing if you have it. Keep in mind, depending on how much of a lawn you have on your property, you may not notice either type as an invasive species.

So one way to deal with it is simply to dig it out and remove it altogether, replacing it with a healthier, more natural form of grass. But this invasive method is very expensive. Instead, try using an all natural product on it that can kill it off. You can also use all natural methods like mowing and irrigation to dry out the toxic grass and only the toxic grass, leaving everything else just fine.

When it comes to toxic chemicals that could be in your lawn, your one and only solution is to switch over to a non-toxic alternative. There are many ways to handle your lawn without using harmful chemicals. This includes conditioning it long before it can become an issue. Take the proper steps prior to your growing season and you?ll have a much better lawn to look forward to.

If you?re like most people, you?re probably a bit surprised by what can be lurking outside your front door. Fortunately, there?s plenty you can do to catch the problem before it becomes destructive or dangerous. Just look for the above signs and follow an organic regimen to rid yourself of the problem.

>Pete Kontakos is a certified wrestling coach and has experience in the retail industry and restaurant industry as a General and District manager.

Decorating Your Bathroom on a Budget: The Do’s and Don’ts

pink-bathtubThe bathroom may be one of the smaller rooms in your home but it doesn’t have to be boring. The possibilities are endless with a little creativity. No matter what your budget is, you can decorate your bathroom without breaking the bank. With these tips your bathroom will be your most complimented room in your home.

Paint
One of the first things many people notice when walking into a room is the color. If you are looking to update your bathroom, the walls are a great place to start.
•    Do
Choose a color that will either match or compliment your towels and other bathroom accessories. Keep in mind the walls are not the only thing you can paint. You can add a complimentary color just by painting the
cabinets or depending what style you have, the bathtub. When working with a budget, don’t be afraid to be creative and think outside the box.
•    Don’t
Assume colors will coordinate with each other. Bring a towel or a small accessory when choosing your paint color. Pictures may give you an idea of what colors would go well together but since lighting is typically not the best in bathrooms, it is best to have a swatch with you for comparison.

Hardware
The accent pieces can play a big part when reinventing a room. The hardware in your bathroom is just another great way to update your space.
•    Do
Change your metallic options out with a flat black or gray. If you have plain hardware, try to upgrade with an ornate design such as leaves or a Fleur-de-lis pattern. Just something as simple as changing out the hardware can add just enough flair that you feel like walking in the space is like a breath of fresh air.
•    Don’t
Purchase hardware without having and overall design in mind. Make your life easy and purchase hardware once you have a clear vision of the finished product. Nothing is worse than having a beautiful new space with hardware that doesn’t coordinate well.

AccessoriesBathroom-decor
Sometimes it’s the little things that matter. If you want to keep it really simplistic, just changing out your accessories will make a big impression.
•    Do
Purchase accessory sets that are exact matches to each other or purchase items that compliment your existing décor. This makes decorating a snap and can bring your room together quickly.
•    Don’t
Feel it is necessary to purchase every piece in the collection. Choose the pieces you like and most importantly need. Keep in mind that it’s not necessary to have exact matching pieces if you want if you are going for an unconventional look. Find pieces in complimentary colors or designs. Even your towels don’t have to be the same color. Choose a bold or bright color such as a blue or purple and a contrasting color such as a black or gray. Complementing what you already have makes decorating easy on the wallet.

Lighting
Lighting is an issue in many bathrooms as the windows typically tend to be smaller or nonexistent. It can lead to a dim space that is difficult to see in.
•    Do
Embrace soft lighting when natural light is not an option. Another trick is to incorporate additional mirrors to the space. Mirrors can reflect the light already available and make the space feel larger than it actually is.
•    Don’t
Think any light is good light. Harsh lighting tends to dull the room rather than brighten it.
The most important thing to remember when decorating is that it’s the little things that count. To breathe new life into a room you don’t have to do a complete overhaul. A new color on the wall or a revamp of accessories can give you a fantastic change that will appeal to your eyes and your pocket book.

Do you have some bathroom decorating tips? Share your favorite tips in the comments below.

Image Credit:ezpong.com