Monthly Archives: November 2014

Thanksgiving Safety

Happy Thanksgiving from Englund Construction!

turkey

Did you know that Thanksgiving Day home fires cause more property damage and claim more lives than fires on any other day of the year? Obviously, cooking is the leading cause of the home fires on Thanksgiving Day.

The kitchen is the heart of the home, especially on Thanksgiving Day. The area can be quite chaotic with all of the main and side dishes being prepared all at once. Prior planning and preparation can prevent throwing things together last minute, and can help you organize your time more efficiently.

With the large groups of people and football games going on, it can get crazy. It’s not hard to forget about a pot of something cooking in the corner, but this can be very dangerous. Most of the fires on Thanksgiving are caused by unattended appliances.

Deep frying your turkey is more dangerous than more traditional methods. Turkey fryers can be tricky, and they can tip over and spill hot grease all over the place. Grease fires can be deadly and spread really quickly. If you do like deep frying your turkey, use extreme caution and never leave it unattended.

If you want to make sure your kitchen is free from fire damage this year, you can try to follow some of our Turkey Day safety tips:

  • Pay attention to your turkey. If you plan on letting it cook for hours on end, have a “keep watch” schedule with your housemates and check it regularly.
  • Plan out your day and meal plan. If you want to watch the game, plan to have most of the cooking already done before it starts, so you are not distracted while cooking.
  • Do not overfill the oil in the fryer pot. If you overfill, it can lead to hot oil spattering and spilling over when you lower the turkey into it. Oil can hit the burner on the stove and instantly catch on fire (and spread quickly)
  • NEVER spray water on a grease fire. It will spread and get out of control. Keep a fire extinguisher handy especially if you are deep frying
  • If the cooktop is on, do not leave the kitchen. Keep an eye on the food.
  • Check food that is baking or roasting regularly
  • Keep your pets and children out of the kitchen while the dangerous tasks are being preformed.

We hope you all have a happy, healthy and safe Thanksgiving!

Winter is Coming

frozenhomeIt’s that time of year again!

Winter weather is here, whether it is welcomed or not! Harsh winter conditions can do a number on our homes, especially if we don’t take the time to prepare for it.

We’ve put together a few easy home winterizing tips that you should do in order to protect your home this year:

  • Clean out gutters - Keeping your gutters free of debris can help prevent damaging ice dams from forming. It also helps them drain correctly and prevents water from seeping into your home’s foundation
  • Have your roof inspected - This is important especially for older roofs. Finding problem areas now is much better than finding them during a rain storm.
  • Locate your generator - Make sure your backup generator is in an easy to get to location, and fire it up to make sure it is in working condition
  • Add fuel stabilizer to all gas power tools and generator 
  • Remove your window screens - Regular window screens can actually trap moisture and build up an ice layer on them. This can damage the screen and also cool your home down
  • Educate your housemates - locate the main water shut off for your home and make sure everyone knows where it is
  • Clear driveways of leaves and debris - Clear off your driveway frequently before they freeze or snow hits
  • Re-caulk where needed - Check around windows and doors for drafts. Caulk inside and out where necessary to keep heat from escaping.
  • Unthread any hoses - disconnect any hoses from the outside hose bibs (faucets)
  • Turn off valves that protect plumbing in outside areas and cold walls
  • Insulate hose bibs  - In extreme cold conditions insulate the outside hose bibs
  • Winterize BBQ grill - If you’re not planning on using during the winter
  • Mow the lawn - Mow the lawn one last time so you don’t have to during the one warm spell we’ll get in the winter
  • Put away patio furniture 
  • Mulch with raked leaves - Mulch your gardens with raked leaves (instead of throwing them out), it will help control weeds and will compost over the winter
  • Remove old tomato plants - Removing these plants will help control disease

These tips are fairly easy to do and can be done in one weekend if you plan it out right. Prior planning and preparation is your best tool against surprise home disasters.

Please remind friends and family to winterize their homes as well. Happy winter!

 

*photo cred emergency.cdc.gov

Maple Valley Remodel

We’re working on a complete home remodel in Maple Valley and have included some of our photos of the progress.

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As you can see, the entire home is being gutted and redone. We can’t wait to post more photos of the progress and finished product! Stay tuned!