Prone positioning is used as a rescue therapy to increase the oxygen level in body when mechanical ventilation or an external source of oxygen is not. Read the blog for more understanding.

“Sanjeevani for Covid Patients” – Step by Step process explained to Do-it-Yourself

Increase Your Oxygen Levels Naturally

The unprecedented spread of Novel coronavirus has caused the outbreak of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS-CoV-2) worldwide. More and more people are suffering from acute oxygen crisis leading to the need for emergency ventilation. However, even after a year into Covid-19, medical oxygen scarcity is still costing lives. Spontaneous breathing is possible without ventilator support. It is known as unassisted spontaneous breathing. But is self-ventilation possible? Yes, an SOS technique, prone positioning helps in self-ventilation when a person suffers from severe breathlessness with dwindling oxygen saturation levels. It allows more oxygen to reach the lungs and reduces the blood’s tension due to an oxygen crisis.

The normal level of oxygen in blood should be 95% partial pressure of oxygen or more.

What is the normal oxygen level in blood?

The normal level of oxygen in blood should be 95% partial pressure of oxygen or more1. Individuals with sleep apnea or chronic lung disease can have normal oxygen levels around 90% partial pressure of oxygen. If your partial pressure reading of oxygen is lower than 95%, you require health care assistance. A pulse oximeter is a device that is used to check the oxygen levels in the body. It is a clip-like device that you can use at home to detect the oxygen levels in your body.

The virus affects the human lungs leaving them incapable of performing the gaseous transport at its maximum potential.

How does Covid-19 affect the oxygen levels in the body?

The working mechanism of the novel coronavirus is still under rigorous research. One of the biggest mysteries related to the virus is that it causes ‘silent hypoxia2.’ It is a condition in which the circulating oxygen levels in the blood decreases, which can irreparably damage vital organs of the body. It can be life-threatening if gone undetected for a long time. The term silent is used because there are no signs of breathlessness or hypoxia in many covid-19 affected individuals. The virus affects the human lungs leaving them incapable of performing the gaseous transport at its maximum potential. The tissues of the lungs get damaged due to the virus, lose oxygen and stop working. They no longer infuse the blood with oxygen. It causes the oxygen levels in the body to drop gradually.

Proning has become a regular part of the treatment protocols for coronavirus. Know what is proning?

What is ‘Proning?’

Proning is a technique in which patients with respiratory distress are placed on their stomach with care and made to breathe. Lying down in your stomach for around 40 minutes can help naturally self-ventilate with an efficiency of up to 80%3. Proning has become a regular part of the treatment protocols for coronavirus. Accessibility of oxygen has become vitally important. The world is striving to meet the needs of medical oxygen. In this kind of situation, we can acclimatize ourselves to self-ventilate in case of emergency. Proning is such a way to naturally self-ventilate yourself.

Why proning is important for a patient?

Why prone a patient?

Prone positioning affects the distribution of air inside the lungs. It affects the enlargement or collapse of alveoli, which allows oxygen and carbon dioxide in the blood. It is detrimental to underlying pulmonary function for mechanical ventilation. Proning provides better ventilation to the dorsal lungs threatened by alveolar collapse. It has proven to improve mortality. It creates a distribution of ventilator volumes and pressure throughout the lungs. ARDS causes the accumulation of water in the lower part of the lungs. When you are lying on your back, blood reaches the lower parts of the lungs, but there is a problem in gaseous exchange due to the water deposition. It causes trouble in the oxygenation and removal of carbon dioxide. Reports from the US, China, France, and Italy, which included both case series and retrospective analysis, have proved that Proning can help Covid-associated ARDS. It keeps the alveolar spaces open. In its guidelines for the clinical management of critical covid-19 affected individuals, the Union Health Ministry suggested that in patients with severe ARDS, prone ventilation for more than 12 hours per day is required.

Understand the need for prone position.

What do you need for proning?

Requisites for Proning4 are very basic. All you need is four to five pillows. One pillow has to be placed below the neck, one or two pillows below the chest through the upper thighs, and two pillows below the legs. It would be best to change the lying position every thirty minutes from lying on the belly to laying on each side. Then again, sit up before lying in the supine position again (on your belly).

A step-by-step guide to prone position breathing at home.

A step-by-step guide to personal breathing at home

  • Place one pillow below the neck, one or two pillows below the chest through the upper thighs, and two pillows below the legs.
  • Lay down for 30 minutes to 2 hours on your belly.
  • Lay on your right side for 30 minutes to 2 hours.
  • Sit up and rest for 30 minutes to 2 hours.
  • Again lay on your left side for 30 minutes to 2 hours.
  • Then back to the position – lying on your belly.
In what conditions one must not practice proning?

When should one not practice proning?

One should not practice proning in the following conditions:

  • Pregnancy
  • Deep venous thrombosis
  • Major cardiac conditions
  • Unstable spine, femur, or pelvic fractures
  • Morbid obesity5 Seizure disorders
  • Facial injuries

Things to be kept in mind while proning

There are a few things that you should keep in mind related to proning:

  • Proning should not be done at least for one hour of meals.
  • Do it till it feels tolerable.
  • One can prone up to 16 hours in different cycles.
  • Keep track of injuries and pressure on your body during proning.
  • Adjust pillows to alter pressure areas.
A five-step process to place a patient in the prone position in the case of emergency.

Non-self-pronating patients (in an emergency)

Here is a five-step process to place a patient in the prone position in the case of emergency using a bed and flat sheet, by the family members:

  • Use the flat sheet to pull the patient to one side of the bed.
  • Place the flat sheet around the arm that will pull through as you are turning the patient.
  • Use a second flat sheet on the bed and tuck under the patient, which you can pull when turning the patient.
  • Place a sheet below the patient, turn him/her over, and place him/her in a supine position (on his/her stomach).
  • Straighten the limbs of the patient and let the patient breathe. Try changing the position of the patient every thirty minutes.

Covid patients under home quarantine and facing breathing issues are advised to follow this process of personal breathing. It is used as a rescue therapy to increase the oxygen level in the body when mechanical ventilation or an external source of oxygen is not available. Specialists in the medical system have termed personal breathing as the ‘Sanjeevani’ for covid patients. Prone positioning will be improving your oxygen levels in 40 minutes. This positioning should be practised every 6-8 hours for 40 minutes to extract optimum benefits. If a patient has no secondary infections and only their lungs are affected, proning or prone ventilation can save them.

We are going through unprecedented times. Let’s keep faith in science and yoga. If we mask up properly and take other precautions we hope to sail through this crisis. Keep an oximeter handy. Whenever you find the reading going below the optimum levels, try proning. Advised by doctors and health professionals this technique is surely going to help you in a significant way.

Indian summers are synonymous with notorious pest problems. This article tells you how to keep your house pest-free in the easiest possible ways.

7 Tips to Keep Your Home Pest-Free This Summer

As soon as the summer sets in with its good vibes and sunshine, we open our homes for the sunrays to naturally disinfect them. Although Indian summer is on the harsher side and often unbearable, we welcome it with open arms. But with the heat descending on the Indian subcontinent, comes the problem of pests infecting our homes. Well, nobody enjoys uninvited guests in their households, right! But even after regularly cleaning your house, you would spot those pesky ants crawling all over your house and termites eagerly damaging your precious wooden furniture pieces. You need to be proactive in solving this issue. Yes, ‘cleanliness’ is the keyword here. Here are some tips listed below to help you keep your home pest-free this summer season:

Bins are a favourite place for pests to live in. Keep your dustbin clean to avoid pest.

1. Keep your dustbins clean

Bins are a favourite place for pests to live in. The dirtier the place is, the more they find it comfortable to live in. Bins are mostly damp and dark areas. This acts as an ideal place for insects and pests to breed. Use a bin with a lid so that the garbage is not open to the atmosphere. Also, make sure that you empty the bin regularly to ensure no pest build-up. Once you empty the bin, Wash it thoroughly under running water. Try and avoid the usage of harsh detergents on a regular basis. Simply deep clean it followed by proper sanitization. Ensure that the bin is properly covered and does not overflow with waste. In case of excess garbage production in your house, use multiple bins. You can also segregate the bins for dry and wet waste which also reduces pest problems as pests tend to attack wet and organic waste more compared to dry waste.

Any cracks and gaps are a perfect location for pests to hide.

2. Seal cracks and holes in the houses

Any cracks and gaps are a perfect location for pests to hide. They will exploit any openings they find in the house; so before summer months arrive in full swing, survey the house once to ensure that your doors, windows, furniture, or walls have no cracks or gaps. Cracks in the bathroom or below the sink are the major sources of moisture intrusion that cause dampness and become hubs of pest infestation.

There are other not-so-hidden entrances for pests too in our house that we often tend to overlook. In many houses, gaps around the door and window frames are not filled properly or sealant has deteriorated. These gaps serve as entry points for pests. So, if you notice any such gaps, fill them immediately with a sealant or an equivalent material.

Keeping the kitchen clean will help you keep the pests away from your house.

3. Keep the kitchen clean

Keeping the kitchen clean will help you keep the pests away from your house. Insects and pests that wander around in the kitchen, or for that matter, in our house are always searching for food. If we cut off this food supply we can solve the problem to a great extent.

We, due to our carelessness often invite this problem by resorting to bad habits like improper disposal of food wastes, not cleaning up spillage then and there, or storing leftovers uncovered. A clean and hygienic kitchen is a bare minimum requirement of a healthy home. So, all we need to do is grow proper kitchen habits.

Stagnant water is a breeding place for pests like mosquitoes. If you have any swimming pool or water tanks or any large water storage places inside the premises of your house, clean them at regular intervals.

4. Don’t allow water to stagnate

Stagnant water is a breeding place for pests like mosquitoes. If you have any swimming pool or water tanks or any large water storage places inside the premises of your house, clean them at regular intervals. Use chlorine to disinfect swimming pools1. Make sure the drains near your house (and also if any inside the house) have a proper flow of wastewater. Clogged drains are perfect for pest breeding. They will also give out a stale odour which is not welcoming at all.

In India, summers are also associated with sudden storms with torrential rainfall in certain areas. These showers lead to the filling up of the plant tubs or buckets kept outside in the open with water. After the rains, ensure that you empty these buckets and tubs totally.

Clean your bathroom with disinfectants regularly as they help to keep the pests away.

5. Keep your bathroom clean

During the summers, one of the most relaxing places you will find in your house is the bathroom. So is the case with pests and insects. This is because it is one of the coolest and most moist places in the house to survive. Having a clean and pest-free bathroom is of the utmost importance for family hygiene. Use a proper exhaust to keep it dry and ensure proper ventilation in the bathroom. Clean your bathroom with disinfectants regularly as they help to keep the pests away.

The garden is another favourite spot for the pests to dwell in. Keep the garden tidy.

6. Keep your garden tidy

The garden is another favourite spot for the pests to dwell in. Keep the grass short. Manage the plant heights by regularly trimming and monitoring the garden. Do not overuse any kind of insecticides or pesticides as they really damage the environment. Do not over-water the plants as that makes the soil particles too loose and the roots also start to decay. In damp soil, undesired insects which are harmful to the plants start to accumulate. Overwatering plants can also aggravate the mosquito problem in your house.

To keep mosquitoes away, you can plant citronella, mint, lemongrass, eucalyptus and geranium saplings in your garden. These plants act as natural mosquito repellents2. The characteristic fragrance of each of these plants effectively repels mosquitoes and other pests in the house.

Keep excess moisture away from home by ensuring proper ventilation and cleaning duct.

7. Keep excess moisture away

It is important that your house is kept dry. Proper ventilation ensures your house remain drier. Keep the windows of your house open for maximum time for the sunlight to enter and breeze to flow in. Sunlight dries the wet areas in the house and naturally disinfects the house. Summers bring us to lock ourselves in a room with the air conditioner on and staying the whole day there with every window and door locked. This is really harmful as it causes pest infestation in the room. Proper ventilation is indispensable for a healthy environment in the house. Also, ensure you clean your air conditioner ducts3 when the AC is used regularly. It is another highly damp place in the house and will serve as a perfect place for pest infestations.

Look out for other damp areas

Finally, as already mentioned earlier, damp places are a breeding ground for the pests in your house. Damp not only attracts numerous insects and pests in your house but also creates an unhealthy and suffocating situation for you to live in. Damp also gives out a stale and suffocating smell in the house. The damp areas should be repaired as soon as detected in the house. You can hire professional service providers for damp problems in your house. They are usually well versed with the process of damp removal, and as it is a long process, you might not yourself be able to deal with it completely and permanently.

Before deciding on where to do the damp treatment in your house, you must first get it checked professionally. You must know the root cause behind the damp.

But you know what? – Before deciding on where to do the damp treatment in your house, you must first get it checked professionally. You must know the root cause behind the damp and the extent of its spread. Only then, the money spent on damp repair will be worth it.

There is nothing more comforting than a clean house to come back to, from all day’s work and rest in. But when pests infest your peaceful abode, this idea becomes a daydream. So, not only during the summers but all the year round you must see to it that your house remains pest-free. In the case of extreme pest infestation problems, you can call pest control services and opt for chemical-based treatments. Pest control service providers customize their services according to the requirements which will be beneficial for you to keep your house pest-free.

If you notice that your energy bill has increased, don’t panic. Read the article to know Reasons why your Home Electricity Bill is so High And Tips to reduce Electricity Bill.

11 Reasons why your Home Electricity Bill is so High? And 9 Tips to reduce your Electricity Bill

Nowadays living life without electricity is next to unimaginable, even in small towns & villages in India. From running fans and lights to washing machines, refrigerators and computers, you need power for everything you do.

However, many homeowners at one time or the other have found themselves asking a common question over and over, “why is my electric bill so high?”

There might be several reasons behind a rise in your bill amount, which generally are not taken into account by a majority of people. Let us understand them.

It is economical to turn off the gadgets that you are currently not using to avoid unnecessary power consumption.

1. Not Turning Off Appliances and Other Gadgets When Not In Use

Sometimes you may forget to switch off your TV even when you are not watching, or even the bulbs during the day. Although it may not seem like a big thing, when this becomes a habit, it may increase your power bill. It is economical to turn off the gadgets that you are currently not using to avoid unnecessary power consumption.

No one likes to pay for something that they do not use, so why continue to pay for the electricity that you are not directly using. Devices that stay plugged in all day continue to suck energy, even if they are not in use.

If you have several family members in your house, they should all ensure that they also disconnect their gadgets like computers, phone chargers, etc. from the sockets when not in use. Unplug your devices that are not in use, otherwise, you will continue to have an unusually high electric bill.

Try to use energy efficient appliances to avoid unnecessary power consumption.

2. Not Using Energy-Efficient Appliances

Whether you are buying a new refrigerator, air purifier, TV or AC, make sure it is energy efficient. Such appliances usually come with special labels to signify the same. By paying a little more initially, you can reduce long-term energy costs.

Know the reasons behind geyser energy consumption.

3. Geyser

Your geyser is probably the most energy-consuming appliance in home. The reasons behind this could be:

  • Improper Insulation of pipe
  • the high temperature is being set at geyser
  • It is being unnecessarily on after usage
Refrigerator should be placed at adequate distance from the wall specified by manufacturer for more power efficiency.

4. Refrigerator

Among all your appliances, a refrigerator uses up a huge amount of electricity. So, it should be placed at an adequate distance from the wall specified by the manufacturer for more power efficiency. This can improve the air circulation around it. Also, exposing the refrigerator to direct sunlight can force it to consume more power.

Turning the air conditioning on while the windows are open is one of the reasons leading to high electricity bills.

5. AC is on while the windows are open

Turning the air conditioning on while the windows are open is one of the reasons leading to high electricity bills. Either keep the windows open and the AC off, or vice versa. Do not let expensive cold air go to waste. Make sure you keep your windows closed while the air conditioning is On to lower your next electric bill.

Putting a phone on charging and forgetting about it can spike your electricity bills easily.

6. Overcharging Phones

Putting a phone on charging and forgetting about it can spike your electricity bills easily. Also, overcharging can harm the phone battery. So, be cautious.

Keeping the air filters clean can lower your AC unit’s electricity use by 5 percent to 15 percent.

7. Dirty AC Filters

Whether you have central air conditioning or room air conditioners, keeping the air filters clean can lower your AC unit’s electricity use by 5 percent to 15 percent1. And since cooling your home is a big source of energy consumption, keeping your AC filters clean can help reduce your monthly electric bill costs.

If wire joints are not done properly in the case of high capacity appliances, then it can lead to energy loss causing an increase in electricity bill.

8. Improper Wire Joints

If wire joints are not done properly in the case of high capacity appliances, then it can lead to energy loss causing increase in electricity bill. Additionally, Use Lugs at Electrical system to avoid energy loss.

9. Faulty Appliances

Faulty appliances in your home not only represent a safety hazard but also they could be wasting electricity and that leads to a spike in bills.

If your appliances like washing machines, air conditioners, are faulty / damaged, they will consume more energy than normal. Inside faulty wiring can damage the appliances in the long term, lead to electrical fires or even get electrically charged, which may give you electrical shocks if you come in their direct contact. Faulty appliances in your home not only represent a safety hazard but also they could be wasting electricity and that leads to a spike in bills. And if there is any loose connection in internal wiring, then it will also lead to an increase in energy consumption.

That old refrigerator, the old Television set, or that outdated appliance may need to be serviced or changed with time.

Improper Wire Gauge can cause overheating of wires which will lead to an increase in electricity due to energy loss.

10. Improper Wire Gauge

Improper Wire Gauge can cause overheating of wires which will lead to an increase in electricity due to energy loss.

11. Defective Wiring & other electrical issues

Electrical issues can be any type of electrical leakage, damaged insulation, overheating of wires and other electrical faults.

Defective wiring is one of the reasons why your bill could be increasing. It may be causing your electricity to leak unintentionally. This is why it is important for you to maintain the electrical components of your house; this would include the fixtures, outlets, and wiring in and around your home. Other electrical issues can be any type of electrical leakage, damaged insulation, overheating of wires and other electrical faults. In that case, contact professionals who are experts in finding all electrical issues of your home / property.

9 Tips to save electricity Bill

Six general tips to save electricity bill.

1. Switch off Lights and electrical appliances when you do not use them

This is one of the easiest measures to save electricity and reduce electricity bills. Most of us know this but still do not follow the basic rule.

2. Use Energy Efficient Light Bulbs

Use CFL or LED lights that consume less energy as compared to normally used light bulbs. They also give more light. They will cost more but will be a money saver and energy saver in the long run.

3. Use Refrigerator Wisely

A refrigerator consumes too much electricity. Follow few tips:

  • Do not overload the refrigerator.
  • Defrost your refrigerator regularly.
  • Try not to open or close the refrigerator too often to avoid energy consumption.
  • Clean and maintain Refrigerator (both inside & outside).

4. Take Care of few things while using an Air conditioner

  • Ensure proper sealing of doors and windows when operating AC.
  • Clean AC filter every month.
  • Use film / tinted glass on windows.
  • If using the AC for open area like Living Area, then ensure rooms which are not in use are closed.
  • Use the right size of AC depending on various factors.
  • Place AC in a shaded area to avoid effect of Sun rays.

5. Regarding Geyser Usage

Some tips related to usage of geyser to save your electricity:

  • Use the right size of Geyser.
  • Ensure proper insulation of the pipe.
  • Minimize temperature of Geyser.
  • Upgrade to Solar Water heater.

6. Use Sensor

Use sensors for lights in bathroom and other less used areas to avoid more energy consumption.

Shut doors to areas you are not using, and only cool or heat the rooms where you spend the most time.

7. Shut Doors and close Curtains

There are simple things you can do to reduce the costs of heating and cooling without making life uncomfortable.

  • Shut doors to areas you are not using, and only cool or heat the rooms where you spend the most time.
  • In cooler months, make sure your curtains or blinds seal your windows properly.
  • In warmer months, keep your curtains closed during the day. By keeping the sun off your windows with external shadings such as external blinds, your house will remain cooler.
Weatherizing, or sealing air leaks around your home, is a great way to reduce energy loss.

8. Proper insulation of Home

Maintain proper insulation of home by using Bright reflective paint in walls to ensure cool temperature at home. Secondly, use Sun reflective film for windows.

Also, Weatherize your home: Weatherizing, or sealing air leaks around your home, is a great way to reduce energy loss. To prevent these leaks, you should ensure that there are no cracks or openings between the wall and window/door frame.

Try to use high voltage appliance systematically to avoid high energy consumption.

9. Turning on the gadgets wisely

In many households, a common mistake that people commit is they switch on all the devices simultaneously. Try to use high voltage appliance systematically to avoid high energy consumption.

Conclusion

Well, saving an electricity bill entirely depends on your living conditions and living standards. Our objective was to make you aware of the possible reasons behind shooting up of electricity bill and also share general tips to reduce energy consumption.

If you notice that your energy bill has increased, don’t panic. Knowing the reasons and tips, you may be able to make some changes to take more control of your power bill and lower it in future months.

Sliding glass doors or windows are designed for beauty, convenience, and efficiency. Read the Blog for tips to maintain it.

Maintain your Sliding Door/ Window to ensure smooth functioning

  • Common problems or issues in sliding door/window
    • Operational issues
    • Installation & other issues
  • 7 Tips for maintenance & Repair
  • Type of sliding door to be chosen?

Why are doors significant? Some obvious reasons are – privacy, accessibility, protection against natural elements, safety against burglars etc. Doors also offer structural integrity to homes. Available in different shapes, colours, sizes, and styles, doors also serve the overall aesthetic appeal of living and working spaces.

Sliding glass doors or windows are designed for beauty, convenience, and efficiency. They are a great addition to any home. Presently, sliding door/window is one of the most commonly used ones in homes as well as properties due to the following reasons:

  • The glass doors or window panes they support offer a translucent or transparent view of the outside world.
  • They let the natural daylight in.
  • Make rooms look more spacious.
  • They open sideways; so, you save a lot of space.

As they are an essential part of the design of your home, you will wish to make sure they are functioning properly and safely.

Common problems or issues in sliding door/window

Multiple factors can affect the operation of sliding doors.

a. Operational issues

Multiple factors can affect the operation of sliding doors:

  • Rectangularity of frame: It is important to check whether the frame is rectangular or not. If the frame is not rectangular, then there will be a problem in operation of the door as well as the gap will be generated which will cause unwanted elements to enter like rainwater, insects, etc. This can also lead to energy loss in the case of operating an air conditioner.
  • Track level: It is important that the top and bottom track should be in level. If it is not in level, then door will not be smoothly operating. Sometimes, there can be air gap generated.
  • Clogged track: With regular use, sliding doors can collect dirt, mud, hair, dust, and rust in their tracks and grooves. The collected debris will increase the friction between the track and roller, causing operational failure. Weep holes should also be cleaned to avoid water stagnancy on the track.
  • Damaged Roller: Often, low quality or worn out roller cause operational dysfunction of sliding doors. If the rollers are broken or chipped, they won’t slide on the track. Besides, if left unrepaired, the impaired rollers can damage the track as well. If the bearing is of low quality, wheel is not properly aligned, lubrication issue, etc will cause operational problems.
Check out installation and others issues in sliding door that needs to be taken care of for its maintenance.

b. Installation & other issues

Apart from operational issues, there are installation and others issues that needs to be taken care of for its maintenance.

  • Misaligned installation: If frame and panel are not installed properly, it can cause air gap (causing energy loss, moisture intrusion & rattling noise) as well as operational problem. This can happen due to various reasons but usually due to poor workmanship.
  • No / Damaged Sealant: If there is a gap around door/window frame or sealant has deteriorated, air seeping in and out of these gaps affects the energy efficiency of your home and also allows the moisture to enter inside the house which can cause severe damage in the future. Also, it can create an entry point for pest/insects.
  • Non-uniform weather stripping: Weather stripping is important for preserving the energy efficiency of your windows and keeping moisture out. Sometimes non-uniform weather stripping can be due to poor workmanship or it has been worn out with time & usage.
  • No rubber gasket provided: If the gasket is not provided or non-uniform gasket, it can cause loose glass fitting problem, which may lead to breakage of glass.
  • Improper locking system: This includes misalignment of lock & defective lock system. Also, sometimes the lock can have trouble latching correctly. Especially after years of use and possible bending or damage. A proper locking system is one of the important factors for safety & security.
Know 7 tips for Sliding door Maintenance & Repair.

7 tips for Maintenance & Repair

  • Clean the Track: To ensure smooth operation, regular upkeep of sliding doors is necessary. The tracks should be clean and dust-free for the roller to slide with ease. Loose debris can be vacuumed or removed from the bottom track using a brush. After doing this, wipe the tracks using a household cleaner.
  • Provide Lubrication: If the track is clogged, it will not function smoothly. For such problems, lubrication can solve the problem. Hardware components also need lubrication for smooth functioning. You can use WD 401 or equivalent for lubrication and rust.
  • Check the Weather-stripping: Cleaning the weather stripping on your doors/windows can help to remove debris and helps to maintain it. If you notice that the weather stripping2 is worn out or deteriorated, you should replace them immediately.
  • Check Sealant condition: Whenever you clean windows, include a thorough checking of the areas around the sliding door & window frame. For sealing gaps around window/door frame in the exterior area – Exterior grade silicone sealant should be used as per manufacturer’s specification. They are more resistant to external weather conditions.
  • Handle Sliding Doors Glass With Care: Do not push your sliding doors too hard as the resulting impact can damage the tracks or the glass area. It would also be a good idea to regularly clean the glass area at least once a week, given that stains become harder to remove, the longer they stay on the glass.
  • Check the rollers: The most common source behind the sliding door not functioning smoothly are dirty or damaged rollers. All that dirt clogs the rollers underneath and eventually, the door gets stuck. Inspect the door’s rollers to see if they are broken, or have become loose. If the problem is just a loose roller, tighten or replace the loose screws that hold it in place. If a roller is broken, you will have to replace it (better to get it repaired by the vendor).
  • Weeping system maintenance: Check for weep hole blockage by pouring a small amount of water into interior sill track. If water drains out from the exterior weep holes, the weep system is clear. If weep holes are blocked, insert a thin wire into it and repeat the test until the blockage is cleared. Further, Weep hole in the window should be provided on the vertical surface of bottom channel. If weep hole is provided on the horizontal surface of bottom channel in sliding window, can create moisture-related problems.
Read the things to be considered while choosing sliding door or window.

If you are planning to install a sliding door in your home, then there should be a question arising in your mind: Which type of sliding door should be chosen? Among various types of sliding doors, aluminium sliding doors are emerging as a personal favourite of designers and homeowners. This because of the following few reasons:

  • Durability: Aluminium ranks pretty high on the durability factor. Due to its corrosion-resistant property, it does not rust easily. It is highly weather-resistant and can handle harsh weather conditions.
  • Recyclable: Choosing aluminium for your home or office also is an environmentally conscious decision as aluminium has the reputation of being an environmentally-sustainable material.
  • Easy maintenance: Aluminium doors have low maintenance costs and only require regular cleaning to make them look like new.
  • Energy Efficient: This is undoubtedly one of the best features of aluminium sliding doors. The material offers high insulation3 properties.

The Bottom Line

The biggest issue that makes doors prone to coming off the tracks is lack of maintenance. Sliding doors, like all the other parts and systems in your home, require regular cleaning and maintenance.

Our objective was to make you aware of common problems with sliding doors/windows and related tips. If you keep encountering issues with despite frequently cleaning and maintaining them, then contact professionals who can detect the issues and suggest the solution for its longevity.

Are you planning to start your entrepreneurial journey? Consider having a franchise backed business. Here’s why.

A Franchise Is Better Than Own Business – Why?

Do you aspire to become a businessman? Are you confused between running a franchise and starting a start-up business? Well, there are many ways in which you can accomplish your dream. In this particular blog, we will be discussing the various reasons why running a franchise business is better than owning a business / start-up.

Many people believe that franchising is a nice way to make it through the business world. It has a lot of benefits associated with it that one cannot get by starting their own business. Franchising helps in circumventing the struggles and hardships that a start-up business tends to have. Here we have listed out a few benefits of running a franchise over starting an own business.

Franchises help in providing a strategic identity that not only is considered to be effective but also helps in giving a great market impact.

1. An already established brand identity

Franchises help in providing a strategic identity that not only is considered to be effective but also helps in giving a great market impact. Thus, corporate brand identification has proved to give a successful name in the marketplace. Famous brands like Pizza Hut, Body Shop, McDonald’s have a great brand recall which an individual starting a franchise can benefit from. A successful brand is considered to be the one that is easily identifiable by the public and that has popularity among the public.

Franchises are already successful and have strong brand identities globally. With an established brand, comes strong recognition that assures the consumer’s product and experience in various locations. The consistency related to the franchise helps like an old friend who is counting to be with you.

The operating model in a franchise business is tested already for the particular type of marketing strategies.

2. Offering Experience

Creating an independent business is challenging and tough but if we see it from the eyes of the franchise then it helps in contributing an immediate benefit to the ones who plan to run a franchise business. The operating model in a franchise business is tested already for the particular type of marketing strategies.

Although, there is something extremely fulfilling and satisfying in starting a business from scratch yet there are lots of risks that are involved with starting a standalone business. If you want to run a franchise then you can get a similar experience that will fulfil your dreams of starting your own business with limited risks.

A franchise business already has a reputation in the market for its work and the services and products that it sells.

3. A set blueprint in place

A franchise business already has a reputation in the market for its work and the services and products that it sells. The product or service, brand, future plans, marketing, and customer base are already established. Reputation is regarded to be an important criterion that helps in creating a positive experience among the customers and making them loyal towards your brand. This is something that a newly started business cannot provide because it is a new independent model. Also, the future plan being somewhat devised, the franchisees do not need to worry about things like “what next” and “how to?”

Franchise helps in providing required training that is related to doing and managing the works from technology to accounting as well as teaching ways as to how one can handle the procedures.

4. Franchises provide support

Strong training is always needed until and unless an individual is coming from a similar business background. Franchise helps in providing required training that is related to doing and managing the works from technology to accounting as well as teaching ways as to how one can handle the procedures. Online support is also available if you opt for a franchise business.

If someone runs a franchise then he has the entire brand that is present to back him up during any difficulties. A franchise owner can take the help of numerous other franchisers who are out there running the same brand and have gained a lot of knowledge in the years of working with the company. A franchise believes that his other franchise partners too shall succeed, as when one joins a franchise, they become a part of the family.

A franchise organization model provides a particular franchise with the capacity to grow under a specific brand.

5. Partnership benefits

A franchise organization model provides a particular franchise with the capacity to grow under a specific brand and allows it to share the benefits that take place under a large group of people owning a business. Though every business is independently managed and owned, all its franchises share a collaborative benefit from the organization through the oversight and support of the particular franchisor that includes:

  • Resources related to group advertising that are not typically available to independent, small business owners.
  • It helps you to own your business by making decisions yourself, guided by the experienced business enterprise.
  • The capability to sell services and products to the market that the company owns or the outlet of the company would be otherwise difficult due to the high operational cost.
  • The benefits of proven and recognized services trademark, patents, proprietary details, designs.
  • Training from victorious business operators.
  • It involves less risk of loss or failure that are associated with starting a new business or start-up.
  • As you are a part of an operation that is uniform, your outlet gets to share the same exterior and interior, product, service and quality, and most importantly brand awareness of the customer.
  • Operational support is given by the franchisor, both after and before launching the business venture and cannot be provided to an individual who aims to start his own business.

If we look from the franchisor’s perspective then this collaboration

  • Offers rapid expansion.
  • Spreads brand messaging as well as awareness.
  • Enables the development of new services and products with more inputs and options.
  • Helps in providing a steady cash flow.
  • Facilitates the overall growth of the company.
There are many franchise options that you can choose from to start your entrepreneurial journey.

Franchise business options with huge prospects

There are many franchise categories1 that you can choose from to start your entrepreneurial journey. Food & beverage, electronic gadgets, and appliances, telecom – just take a look around and you can figure out the options available. However, if you want to tread the offbeat track and still become successful you can opt to start a home inspection franchise business. A sunshine sector in India, home inspection has tremendous prospects that are yet to be leveraged fully.

See this to believe:

Home Inspection – A promising franchise business

A new era started in India after the Professional Home Inspection Service saw its emergence.

A new era started in India after the Professional Home Inspection Service saw its emergence. MACJ – A Buyers Choice is one of the companies that provide home inspection services to the huge mass of Indian society as well as collaborates with companies abroad. MACJ – A Buyers Choice is a global brand that has joined forces with famous multi-national companies of America and has great access to all the latest and advanced technology and tools. As a franchisor, it provides various other facilities such as marketing training and inspection training. It can also help you with social media marketing and provide online lead generation support. The brand believes in serving the heart of India and the key requirements of the homeowners and buyers as well as real estate developers. Here, you can make low investment and get high returns, and can successfully meet your dreams of becoming an entrepreneur.

MACJ - A Buyer's Choice through its home inspection services provide full disclosure of the health of a home and gives the buyer / builders better peace of mind.

The MACJ – A Buyer’s Choice Advantage

MACJ – A Buyers Choice through its home inspection services provide full disclosure of the health of a home and gives the buyer / builders better peace of mind. We believe that pre-sale inspections are the best decision for all home buyers.

  • Partnership with Global MNCs with franchises in more than 19 countries across 200 locations.
  • Employment and Skill Development opportunities.
  • First mover advantages.
  • An experienced team that believes in providing the best results for the customers. More than 5,000 inspections have been carried out by MACJ that itself speaks for its credibility.
  • MACJ provides a vast range of services across the entire real estate value chain; so, you have more than one segment of customers to target and sell your services to.
  • A pan-India footprint, which means you can start your business anywhere in the country; you will get the same level of support.

Thus, if you ask – “Are franchises successful?” The answer is an emphatic Yes. It is successful if you have chosen the right brand and the right model, for instance, MACJ – A Buyer’s Choice Home Inspection Services. A franchise opened in the correct place and run with ambition, passion, and talent can result in a sure-shot success.

Unpleasant surprises are the last thing one expects in a newly purchased house. What can be those surprises? How to reduce the risk?

Reduce the Risk of Unwanted Surprises after You Move In

What could be more exciting than buying a new home? The experience of a new community, new neighbours and friends, and perhaps even a new outlook on life can certainly prove to be extremely fulfilling. You have a whole new place to call your own; you can decorate it the way you want and take care of its minutest needs. However, this experience can be short-lived if you are not careful enough while taking the handover. Whether you are moving into a previously owned house or a new house, it is important to know its actual condition in order to reduce the risk of surprises after moving in.

What things can come as a surprise after moving into a new house?

Well, the list can surprise you too! Here are some of the most annoying ones that can make you think, “I wish I had detected them before moving in”:

  1. Small damp patches on ceiling and corners, especially after a couple of rain showers in the monsoon
  2. Cracks in the ceiling or freshly painted walls
  3. Sudden slowing down of the water pressure
  4. Old models of faucets getting rusty or causing leaks
  5. Flickering lights and frequent dark-outs
  6. Dysfunctional switchboards
  7. Improper functioning of doors and windows
  8. Water stagnation on the floor or roof
  9. Worn out Joint Fillings

And this is not all! There can be many more surprises waiting for you.

Now let us take each surprise at a time and see what does it indicate:

Check out damp patches at home to avoid further spreading of moisture.

1. Damp patches

A warm cosy home is all that everyone wants to come back to at the end of the day. But if your rooms feel cold all the time and then you come across some wet patches, become alert. It could be damp! And you know how damp plays with your health and your property’s health too – right?

Temperature fluctuations, poor workmanship, natural ageing etc may cause any manmade structure to crack with time but the problem arises when a crack happens due to structural reasons.

2. Cracks in ceilings and walls

These are not always serious. Temperature fluctuations, poor workmanship, natural ageing, etc may cause any man-made structure to crack with time but the problem arises when a crack happens due to structural reasons1. So, educate yourself a little bit about the causes of cracks and try to know what your home’s cracks are telling you.

3. Inefficient plumbing

Inefficient plumbing can cause wastage of water as well as damage to the property.

Inefficient plumbing can cause wastage of water. This issue is more common in previously owned houses. There could be blockage or clogs in the pipes if the plumbing is not done properly. One small leak can waste a lot of water. As the water comes out drip by drip, it adds up. It only takes 4000 drips to waste one litre of water. One drip per minute from just one faucet in your home adds up to about 1440 drips per day! Plumbing leaks not only affect your pipes and water pressure but can also cause dampness. A leak that goes undetected, especially under a sink or in the wall behind the WC, can lead to dampness/moisture problems and algal growth.

Old models of faucets can cause water leaks.

4. Old models of faucets

Old models of faucets can cause water leaks too. For example, old models of toilet flush require more litres of water whereas the newer models require less water. There could also be an issue of pressure in water in the older models of faucets.

Old faucets attracting rust are also not unusual. For this, you must insist on getting the old fittings replaced if you are buying an old house or check the brand during the construction of your new building.

5. Electrical power overload

Electrical power overload can occur due to poor wiring in the house or when lightning strikes.

Electrical power overload2 can occur due to poor wiring in the house or lightning strikes. Voltage fluctuations are common and last for a microsecond only but if you experience frequent fluctuations then it is due to the poor wiring system in the house. This could lead to appliance damage as well.

The on/off switches of your house can stop working all of a sudden when the switches are overridden by heavy electrical current. Dysfunctional switches can be dangerous for small children if the switches are within their reach. An old or damaged switch can also create problems.

Any kind of defects like cracks, decay, etc on the frame of the doors and windows can be caused due to regular use.

6. Improper functioning of doors and windows

Any kind of defects like cracks, decay, etc on the frame of the doors and windows can be caused due to regular use, but if any such thing happens soon after move-in, then will know that the part installed was of poor quality. The panel can start to delaminate or peel if the proper adhesive is not used. Gaps can form between frames and the wall due to poor workmanship and this may lead to moisture/water intrusion(more in the case of the external window frame).

The slope of the floor (or the roof) is something that most of us forget to check and consider while purchasing a house.

7. The slope of the floor (or the roof)

The slope of the floor (or the roof) is something that most of us forget to check and consider while purchasing a house. Later, during the monsoon or regular course of cleaning, when we notice stagnating water, we realize the sloping is incorrect.

Worn out Tile Joint Fillings / improper grouting in the wet areas (bathroom / kitchen) will lead to moisture seepage.

8. Worn out Tile Joint Fillings

Worn out Tile Joint Fillings / improper grouting in the wet areas (bathroom / kitchen) will lead to moisture seepage resulting in dripping of water on the lower floors and damage to the property.

Why cry over spilt milk? Get Your Home Inspected Before Moving In?

It is very important to do a thorough health & safety check-up of all the components and systems from floor to the ceiling, walls, plumbing, electrical work, water and sewage etc.

The above issues if not inspected before moving in can become a terrible nightmare for the buyers. Therefore it is very important to do a thorough health & safety check-up of all the components and systems from floor to the ceiling, walls, plumbing, electrical work, water and sewage, evidence of rodents, fire and safety, etc by using modern technologies and tools through some reliable and trusted home inspection professionals.

Inspection can include various checkpoints like:

  1. Cracks on walls and ceiling
  2. Doors and windows
  3. Leaks and water seepage
  4. Damp patches (walls, bathrooms, ceilings, windows)
  1. Ventilation
  2. Checking the plumbing system
  3. Entire electrical wiring of the house
  4. Height of the switchboards
  1. Slope of the flooring in wet areas & roof
  2. Tiling work
  3. All storage space, passages & alleys, and staircases & much more……

What could the ‘surprises’ turn into?

Roof / Ceiling leaks and water seepage in apartments and standalone houses can cause major damage to the walls and the ceilings.

1. Roof / Ceiling leaks and water seepage in apartments and standalone houses can cause major damage to the walls and the ceilings. Look for the signs of dampness like flaky or bubbling paint on walls, black wet patches under the sink in the kitchen and bathroom areas. These damp patches usually get worse over the years and spread on the entire wall making it unpleasant and damaging the outer covering.

Inadequate ventilation can cause dampness and lead to the building up of bad odour and a host of indoor pollutants.

2. Inadequate ventilation can cause dampness and lead to the building up of bad odour and a host of indoor pollutants. Worsening indoor air quality in the absence of fresh air can severely affect the health of your family members.

Small cracks on the interior or exterior walls may not be quite noticeable but you may need to take special efforts to detect them.

3. Small cracks on the interior or exterior walls may not be quite noticeable but you may need to take special efforts to detect them because if they are left undetected they may grow to become major problem areas later. Water seepage is just one of the consequences that weakens the structural integrity of the building.

Misaligned windows or door frames can sometimes cause problems in their operation or functionality.

4. Misaligned windows or door frames can sometimes cause problems in their operation or functionality. Buyers should also check for non-functional locks. This may affect the security of the house. Check for any kind of damage in glass or frames. Check for the gaps between the window frames and sill because these gaps can lead to water intrusion then, property damage.

Checking the water pressure in bathrooms and kitchens is very important before you move in.

5. Checking the water pressure in bathrooms and kitchens is very important before you move in. You must turn on all taps at once to see how it affects the pressure at each point because your daily life will depend on this. Clogged pipes can affect the pressure of the water.

Even a small leak can spread damp causing algal growth in the house.

6. The backbone of any house is plumbing. The condition of the pipe materials used for drainage purposes, the fittings and joints speak a lot about it. Any kind of compromise there can cause damage to the pipes. Even a small leak can spread damp causing algal growth in the house. Leakages can also cause damages like the peeling of paint, wallpaper, decay in the doorframe, delamination of plywood etc.

Proper functioning of the electric wiring system is important for a safe home.

7. Proper functioning of the electric wiring system is important for a safe home. Besides doing a DIY inspection, it is recommended to perform a comprehensive electrical inspection through a professional home inspection company. Before moving in, check if all light switches and plug points are working properly or not. Meticulously check if any switch is making a buzzing or crackling sound and the lights are not flickering. Ensure that all switches are functioning and that there are no loose connections.

Another important thing is the placement or height of the switchboard. It should ideally be away from the access of the children to avoid any accident.

Check the flooring condition of your home.

8. Flooring is the foundation of any beautiful home. Inadequate slope, hollow and/or cracked tiles, gaps between the tiles or unevenly fixed tiles and others can prove to be hazardous. The tiles in the bathrooms, especially, should be a little coarse in order to avoid slipperiness.

Proper functioning of the main door is very essential as they connect it with the security of your home.

9. Proper functioning of the main door is very essential as they connect it with the security of your home. Any kind of defect will not only have security issues but also hamper the aesthetic view.

Before moving in, you need to properly check for the proper functioning of the systems and components like water heaters, chimney, extinguishers and sprinklers.

10. Before moving in, you need to properly check for the proper functioning of the systems and components like water heaters, chimney, extinguishers and sprinklers and most importantly the duct system: if you are buying a high-end, modern semi-furnished house. A proper check of these components is integral to you living comfortably.

There can be nothing more frustrating than spending your life’s savings on a home and then lamenting over skipped inspection. So, opt for a complete home inspection before moving in, as it will:

  • Give you the peace of mind of knowing you have made a sound buying decision.
  • Reveal the repairs and investments you will need to make.
  • Reduce the risk of unwanted “surprises” after you move in.
Strong and durable doors are characteristics of a well-maintained property. To extend their lifespan, look for the door defects mentioned in the article.

14 Door Defects Commonly Detected During Home Inspection

A good house has all its components in the perfect place, and well-maintained doors are synonymous with its safety and security. A door not only gives access to the inside of your household but is also the first thing one comes and notices in your apartment. Hence, doors should be given top priority in home maintenance. Whether it is a serious issue like a broken lock or a minor disturbance like a squeaky noise, nothing should be ignored and left unattended.

Here are a few common defects of doors which you should be vigilant about and which are given importance during home inspection too.

Termites, beetles and carpenter ants attack woodwork in a house and render them porous thereby making them weak and brittle.

1. Wood Attacking Pests

Termites, beetles and carpenter ants attack woodwork in a house and render them porous thereby making them weak and brittle. They primarily attack wooden doors and eat away the frames. But locating these pests inside the door frames is quite tough. Sometimes before you even identify the pest attack, the wood is hollow from within and conditions are really tough to manage. Termites attack damp, organic wood and stay there and bore through the woods. They are attracted to cellulosic objects in general. They can destroy doors completely. These doors are not safe; they can just collapse or break anytime. You can detect the presence of these pests by looking at:

  • Termite signs: Termite mud, cracks on door frame or corners, hollow-sounding wood, discarded wings, etc.
  • Borer signs: Holes and powdered wood. Boring beetles are not visible from outside. You can only gauge their presence by knocking on the door parts having tiny holes. If dust comes out, you will know the door is infested by borers.

To know how to protect your doors from these menaces, click here.

Dead knots decrease the structural strength of the timber.

2. Wood with Dead Knot

Timber, like any natural product, has imperfections in it. There are knots inside the timber: a. live knots which are lighter in colour and do not fall out and b. dark-coloured dead knots which eventually fall out from the timber creating holes in their place. These knots decrease the structural strength of the timber. So, sections of wood with dead knots should be avoided for making door frames. Cracks develop from the knots reducing the longevity of the door to a significant extent.

Wood has a property of seasonal expansion due to which if no gap is provided between the panel and the frame, the door tends to buckle.

3. Buckling Of Doors

Wood has a property of seasonal expansion due to which if no gap is provided between the panel and the frame, the door tends to buckle. This is an unavoidable problem and happens in almost every house. Once a wooden door buckles, then it becomes difficult to close it in some cases. In other cases, excess pressure is needed to close the door. To avoid this problem, the seasoning of wood is highly recommended. Also, adequate gaps should be provided between the panel and the frame to allow the wooden door to expand seasonally.

Cracks in wooden door frames and panels may occur due to improper seasoning of wood or substandard wood.

4. Cracks in Door Panel/Frame

Cracks in painted wooden door frames and panels may occur due to improper seasoning of wood or substandard wood. Cracks may also occur at frame joints & panel side edges. With time these cracks can become wider. In those cases, doors become more vulnerable to attack by pests. Mildly damaged wood can be repaired by Asian Paints Knifing Paste Filler1 or similar type product as per manufacturer’s specification.

Peeling away from the laminate not only gives a bad and unappealing look but also exposes the wood for further damage.

5. Peeling off Laminate

Laminate works like a protection on the wooden surface. It saves the wood from damage, wear-and-tear. It gives an attractive look and finish at the door. Peeling away from the laminate not only gives a bad and unappealing look but also exposes the wood for further damage. For example, wooden doors without laminate attract pests. Peeling off laminate occurs due to mainly two reasons – improper pasting or excess moisture presence.

6. Peeling off Paint or paint deterioration

Read why paint deteriorates or peels off the doors?

Paint is extremely important for both the door frame and panel. Paint not only gives your door a good finish and look, but also saves it from wear and tear for a longer time period. It saves the wood from coming in direct contact with moisture and dust. Moisture will lead to further damage to wood. Paint is extremely helpful in keeping off microbial infestation in wood. Paint also prevents colonization of termites and other pests in wood.

Now the question is why paint deteriorates or peels off the doors? There can be many reasons but it occurs mainly due to either of the following problems:

  • Presence of excess moisture in the wood
  • Inadequate treatment of the wooden door before painting
  • Non-adherence to the paint manufacturer’s specifications

7. Defects in Manufacturing

Sometimes there are manufacturing defects in the latch, lock, stopper and other fittings. These defects lead to improper functioning of the door. Proper fittings related to door installation should be purchased or else there will be future problems.

In case of improper alignment of door panels and frames, there could be problems in closing the doors in certain seasons.

8. Improper Alignment of Frames

In case of improper alignment of door panels and frames, there could be problems in closing the doors in certain seasons. Wood, as already mentioned, has a property of seasonal expansion. It absorbs moisture during the rainy season and swells which leads to difficulty in closing the door. Further, the door becomes tilted and sometimes, may hit the floor and damage the tiles. In other words, it may cause an obstruction in panel functioning. In case of extreme improper alignment, the doors might not close throughout the year.

Stable, strong and firm doors are important for your house.

9. Stability and Firmness

Stable, strong and firm doors are important for your house. They protect the house from any kind of unforeseen intrusions. It is difficult to break a strong door. Therefore, it is extremely important for you to invest in good quality, strong doors. Not only the doors but also good quality fitting & materials should be purchased. Improper installation and poor quality building materials can severely affect the longevity of the doors in your house.

The uniform gap of 3 mm to be maintained around all sides.

10. Excessive Gap under Door Panel

A good door structure has well-calculated gaps, not too less not too large. It should be enough to accommodate the expanded door under the influence of moisture in monsoons. All kinds of sound, cold air, dust, insects enter the household through the gap between the door and the floor. One should be careful while installing doors. The uniform gap of 3mm to be maintained around all sides.

There should be a minimum of six fasteners for attaching the door with the frame.

11. Inadequate Fasteners at The Frame

There should be a minimum of six fasteners for attaching the door with the frame. In case of less number of fasteners, there is a need for more firmness. Fasteners used should also be of proper quality and rust-free. Doors with rusty, improper fasteners have less longevity and require early replacement.

If gaps are left around the frame while installation, it can lead to attack by pests.

12. Gap around Door Frame

If gaps are left around the frame while installation, it can lead to attack by pests. Termites and beetles may settle down in these gaps. Moisture and dust may also accumulate there. This stimulates microbial growth leading to damage to the property. Gaps should be essentially filled or else it might lead to loss of strength of the doors and moisture-related damage to property.

13. Separation Crack around Frame with Painted Wall

Separation between masonry walls and door frames is another major problem in households. Basically, these cracks occur due to the different co-efficient of thermal expansion2 of wood and masonry wall i.e. brick masonry. A gap occurs between them as expansion and contraction of both is different during change in temperature, which we identify as cracks.

14. Loose Fittings and Improper Lubrication

Lubrication keeps the hinges rust free and the door movement is without hindrance.

Proper lubrication is extremely important for doors or else they will not have a free movement and squeak. Lubrication keeps the hinges rust free and the door movement is without hindrance. Providing periodic lubrication to fittings can help to keep your doors function smoothly. Paying attention to tower bolts, locks and hinges, leads to noise free, smooth and easy operations. In case of tight fittings, there will be trouble in closing and opening the door and in case of loose-fitting, there will be gaps left around which will lead to unwanted stuff entering the household.

These problems mentioned above often lead to the weakening of doors in the house. They may become dysfunctional and collapse anytime. Their durability may be so much compromised that any external force of slightly bigger magnitude will be able to break them thereby putting your property’s security at stake. Hence, you need to pay the utmost attention to door problems and defects. Professional home inspection services accurately identify all these problems and suggest the best possible solutions. If you are opting for one such service, listen to their advice and fix the problems as soon as possible.

Home improvement doesn’t always have to be a costly affair. Here we have listed down some creative ideas for those who are on a low budget.

Best Home Improvement Ideas for Those on a Budget

Home improvement is a wide term that could include a range of ideas and alterations. To narrow down the options, there are constraints like space, budget and the basic architectural plan. It is important to have clarity on all key criteria to get results that are smart and lasting.

In this blog, we focus on home improvement ideas on a budget. We will explore ideas and options across different levels of budget and effort. Sometimes, replacing redundant stuff with refurbished add-ons can help give a brand-new look to your space. If time, effort and budget allow, a few changes in the design can go a long way in customising your home to suite your taste and style.

Let us explore a few creative ideas in detail.

A chic way to do up your floor is to use mats and rugs. However, it is okay if you want to keep the floor untouched but re-grout the tile joints.

For the Floor

Each component of a home comes together to create an aura that captivates the mind of a person when he enters the house for the first time. Yet, the floor is the very first thing that he notices. So, even a little change there will create a significant impact. But changing flooring within a tight budget is rather difficult. Therefore, what you can do is apply your creativity and add things like these:

Rug and Roll: A chic way to do up your floor is to use mats and rugs. There is no limit to being creative with this option. If you want to keep it minimalistic, nothing works like one big rug / mat that covers the entire floor in a room. If you are a maximalist in terms of shades and patterns, go for a mix of colours, sizes and designs. You could even have layers; depends totally on your style.

A few important points to keep in mind while choosing to have rugs and mats are:

  • They are great for homes with kids
  • Not suitable for homes with pets
  • Need to be vacuumed regularly
  • Messes and stains can be tough to get rid of

However, it is okay if you want to keep the floor untouched but re-grout the tile joints to increase the floor’s longevity as well as prevent moisture damage.

Tips for Budget-friendly walls for your home.

Budget-friendly walls

  • Colours and Creatives: Paints and wall art can transform the house completely. All you need to do is give thought to the kind of colour combination that appeals to your taste. Each colour has a specific impact on a room’s perceived shape and size. Light colours like cream and white, for example, reflect light and make a room look spacious; dark colours lend coziness and warmth; striped paint patterns make a room look taller than it is and so on. You can consult paint experts to get the perfect shade for your house. To add more liveliness to a wall, play around with some wall art. You could opt for paint patterns or go for easily available stickers and posters. For those who cannot afford to paint the whole house due to budget or time constraints, painting or polishing the furniture instead can be a clever alternative.
  • Mirrors for Magic: Mirrors add a whole new vibe to a room. However, having a complete wall covered with mirrors could turn out to be expensive. Instead, you could put up 3-4 large vertical mirrors to add more reflective lighting. Adding a bit of exciting lighting can really make it an ambient setting on a budget.
Paying attention to details is an important part of home improvement efforts. Secondly lighting options can turn a room into your dream abode.

Accents & Affixes

  • Focus on Small Things: Paying attention to details is an important part of home improvement efforts. Nothing looks worse than chipped sill edges, rusty window latches, loose doorknobs, and noisy cabinet hinges. While giving a facelift to your home, fix these small things like loose nails and screws, rusty doorknobs, loose window handles, and broken frames etc. These small but important elements may not always catch the eye, but help keep the house in a good shape. Make a list of all these things even before starting the DIY home improvement project so that you do not miss out on any.
  • Lit Up to Liven Up: Spotlights, ambient lights, lamps, shades, chandeliers – lighting options can turn a room into your dream abode. The idea is to liven up space by illuminating dark corners, key elements, and warm spots of the house. Based on purpose, you can choose from task lights (like above kitchen islands), ambient lights (that add a mood), and accent lighting (highlight a specific part of the room). Also, the placement of lights – ceiling, floor, walls, table, etc., is an important consideration. Pricing varies depending on the quality, brand, and technology chosen.
Timely checks for leakage and seepage help keep it in a good condition. Also, Recycling and refurbishing old items in the house to make gorgeous, trendy.

Replace & Repurpose

  • Bathroom Basics: Pipes, sinks, faucets, and showers are important parts of a bathroom. Timely checks for leakage and seepage help keep it in a good condition. Also, nothing is more satisfying than to use perfectly working faucets and showers. So, get them fixed or replaced to make your bathrooms and toilets more functional.
  • Recycle & Repurpose: Recycling and refurbishing old items1 in the house to make gorgeous, trendy and useful décor pieces is smart as well as fashionable. Take a step closer to sustainable living by having an eye for things that can be reused with a little effort. It could be redoing a piece of old and broken furniture, like tables, chairs, cupboards, and book racks; stationery items like pen holders and old boards; jars and bottles; even old clothes and bedsheets can double up as lampshades and small curtains respectively. To find inspiration, there are a lot of useful videos available online that you can watch and get ideas.
Creating smart storage helps optimise space on a small budget.

Storage Spruce-Up

Creating smart storage helps optimise space on a small budget. You could have a bed cabinet and sofas that can be used for storage also. If you have less floor area, go for wall-hung bookshelves and TV units to make it look spacious and neat. Also, pick collapsible furniture to save space without losing on basic utilities.

Home improvement doesn’t always mean making a lot of changes. It could be just one change that makes a big, noticeable difference.

Exciting Elements

  • Go Green: Plants add soul to space. At home, it is a great way to make your house look revamped. Depending on the kind of space you own, you can have more than one green corner in the house. In fact, plants fit almost anywhere – you can place them in pathways, corridors, in the living room, on the terrace, on kitchen sills, windows, etc. Place them in pots of varied materials, designs, shapes and sizes to add a dash of green to your living.
  • The Showcase Spot: Home improvement doesn’t always mean making a lot of changes. It could be just one change that makes a big, noticeable difference. One such idea is to have a wall that catches the eye as soon as someone enters the room. Let it showcase your true, inner self, maybe through a lot of family pictures, or quotes that inspire you, or an artistic masterpiece you love. You could also have a huge bookstand that stacks your favourite authors or maybe a pinboard full of souvenirs and collectables. The possibilities are endless.
A few more budget-friendly home improvement hacks.

A few more budget-friendly home improvement hacks

  • Rearrange your furniture pieces. Repair/polish or upgrade them if required. Discard the ones occupying too much space and replace them with smaller, smarter ones.
  • Create a focal area in your home – it could be in your living room, your balcony, or study corner.
  • Change the curtains and upholstery. Get quirky or traditional cushion covers matching your style.
  • Make your corridors interesting.
  • Get air plants2 for your bathroom.
No improvement idea will be sustainable unless the house is healthy and in a good condition.

There is no dearth of ideas to improve and innovate your dwelling space, even on a tight budget. It just requires some creativity and effort. However, no improvement idea will be sustainable unless the house is healthy and in a good condition. For that, you first need to address common but critical issues like water leakage, damp, damaged waterproofing, cracks in walls and ceilings, faulty electrical wiring, and so on.

For this, it is recommended to go to trusted home inspection services that can help you arrest all kinds of problems, especially the ones that need urgent attention. Typically, a home inspection service will cover all major areas and elements of the house, including:

Areas Covered: Bedrooms | Living Room | Bathrooms | Lobbies | Balconies | Terrace | Servant Rooms | Alleys | Others

Elements Covered: Walls | Ceiling | Floor | Doors & Windows | Plumbing | Electrical | Cabinets | Counter Tops | Steps | Others

A detailed report of issues will cover the health of all these areas and elements. It will also state the condition of materials, installation & finishing, operations & functionalities, and general safety.

The report must be understood to prioritise tasks based on urgency and importance. Make a list of things that need to be fixed right away and ones that can wait. Address the most important ones, before you even think of other kinds of decor and design enhancement options. Only once these things are taken care of, the money spent on home improvement becomes worthwhile.

Planning to renovate your home, here are the tips to save money while renovation.

9 Pro Tips on How to Save Money While Renovating Your House

Planning to renovate your ancestral home or your own home that you bought a few years ago? Home renovation does not specifically mean only to fix the damaged parts or paint the house. But there is more to it; it is a step forward to make your house beautiful as well as stronger than it was before. And while doing so, you might end up spending a lot of money that includes your savings too, as in the process you would have to add small things too that you failed to notice when you were planning a renovation.

Sounds startling? No need to be so as we are here to tell you various ways that can help you and provide you with various tips that can help you save your money while renovating your house. You can take a look at these tips and help yourself from spending too much money.

If you plan a budget for your renovation, then you would face fewer problems while you are in the process of renovating your home.

1. Create a Budget and Stick To It

Before we move further with the topic, we would like to mention what budget renovation means. The term “budget” isn’t the same as cheap. Whenever you plan to make a change in your house or renovate it, you must first make a list of the items that are to be renovated and allot them as per your income. After that, you can fix the price for the materials and then start to make a grasp on what you want to work on according to the budget.

You must then create a spreadsheet and add everything you want to buy. This includes paints, countertops, lighting, plate covers, tiles, cabinet hardware, appliances and other outlets. If you plan a budget for your renovation, then you would face fewer problems while you are in the process of renovating your home.

If you take time & think about which parts of house to be renovated, then you might come up with innovative ideas.

2. Take Time to Think

Waiting for collecting the money needed for renovation and then planning to renovate is not a bad idea. Also, if you take time and think about which parts of them to renovate the house, you might come up with innovative ideas and this is only possible after deep thinking. If you rush into things then you might forget about important issues that you would regret later.

Upcycled items will keep your costs under control while adding a fresh new touch to your home.

3. Use and Upcycle Things Which You Already Have

Not every piece of furniture or installation in your home has to be replaced. For home renovation, more than new things, you need a new idea. Once you have visualized that, try to fit your old home decor items into that theme. The old lampshade will still sit pretty at one corner of your bedroom, the retro wooden table will look great in a different colour polish; use it to create a sitting area on your balcony. There is a lot you can do with your old kitchen cabinets – use them mindfully to create separate storage units or shoe racks but of course, not before repairing the hinges or polishing them afresh. Upcycled items will keep your costs under control while adding a fresh new touch to your home.

4. Storage and Kitchen

When you plan to renovate your house, you may also want to maximize and de-clutter the storage. In this case, utilizing the kitchen to maximize the storage area can help you solve the problem and make a place for your knickknacks. To save money while doing this you can take the help of DIY kitchen cabinets as well as recycled materials available at your home or take help from the thrift stores around your house.

It is you who know what is needed to make your kitchen a better place and by taking the help of DIY you can not only save money but also reuse the materials otherwise kept in your storage room. And if you already have a cabinet in your kitchen, then all you need to do is repaint them to give them a new look.

Replacing your old electrical wiring fittings with the latest products can make a lot of difference in your house... and in your bills!

5. Electrical fittings

Replacing your old electrical fittings and wiring with the latest products can make a lot of difference in your house and in your bills! For example, replacing your old tube lights with LED tubes, bulbs with LED bulbs, and worn-out cables with new ones can save you a lot of money on your electricity bills while turning your house more energy-efficient. Also, you must check for any defective electrical components that may cause incidents totally uncalled for.

If you are planning to change the floor, you must first keep aside the money for that and then spend the rest of the money.

6. Floor Renovation

Floor renovation might seem expensive if you are on a tight budget. So, if you are planning to change the floor, you must first keep aside the money for that and then spend the rest of the money on other things. However, this strictly needs technical intervention as there may be plenty of problems above and/or underneath the floor like degraded grout, worn-out joints between the floor and the walls or concealed leakage, etc. You must detect and fix these issues first and then do the rest of the renovation – looks-wise.

Try online shopping, you will come across a large number of options in terms of material, type and functionality.

7. Shop online

Don’t be old-school and think about picking your new home renovation stuff from physical stores only. Try online shopping too. Thanks to the flourishing online shopping1 trends, you will come across a large number of options in terms of material, type and functionality. Moreover, many online stores keep announcing ‘SALE’ and give exciting offers every now and then. If you are a little alert, you can get the items you have been looking for at lucrative prices. So, shop, save and have a renovated home in no time.

To deal with those unexpected cost components, you should keep a buffer fund in hand.

8. Keep buffer funds

No matter how well you plan your budget, there are going to be some out-of-the-blue expenses because you never know looking at your home superficially where there’s a hidden problem. To deal with those unexpected cost components, you should keep a buffer fund in hand. Then it will not appear like an extra outflow of money.

Smart indoor gardening will not only come cheap but will also go a long way in making your home beautiful and sustainable.

There is nothing cheaper and more beautiful than plants

Though indoor gardening is more about home decoration than renovation, there’s nothing more appealing than it. Smart indoor gardening will not only come cheap but will also go a long way in making your home beautiful and sustainable. Pick lots of potted plants from the nearest mart for every possible corner of your home. Consider vertical gardening to create a statement wall(but always maintain a gap in between vertical gardens & building walls). Put a soothing grass carpet on your balcony and/or grow a long-cherished small kitchen garden on your rooftop. Trust us, small improvisations such as these will completely transform your home while not busting your budget for the renovation.

If you are planning to make structural changes then home inspection will advise the right way by preventing any future problem.

9. Home inspection

To think about renovating a home, you must first try to understand the problems that already exist in your house. While some of them are right in front of your eyes, some can only be recognized by an experienced individual. Therefore, you must find out a professional home inspector who can tell you the faults of your house by using his expertise and advanced technology solutions. Only he will be able to tell you if your roofs are damaged by looking into soft spots – a sign that the roof is falling.

Damp is often caused when there is a crack in the roof or ceiling or the plumbing of the house starts to leak etc. Damp can go unseen for years but if it is seen, we recommend that you get it repaired then and there. The one you hire will also be able to tell you about windows or door issues and issues created by the electrical system etc.

Apart from this, if you are planning to make structural changes then they will advise the right way by preventing any future problem. Also, read the reasons why it is important to have home inspection before renovation.

Visit the wholesale markets where the cost is a little less, if you planning for renovation.

A Pro Tip

If you are simply planning to renovate the interiors of your house then you may have to bear less cost. But if you are planning to change the floors, wiring, plumbing etc, then it may cost you significantly. You may also require labours for your work and that way, you will have to bear more expenses. So to keep your budget on track, you should research properly and then buy the materials from the place where the cost is lesser than the other.

You might also visit the wholesale markets where the cost is a little less. Remember to buy it yourself and do not depend on the workers as they might tell you a higher price for the same thing. And as already discussed, you can shop online during sales. Apart from getting the advantage of selecting from a vast range of items, you can also receive cashback in your wallet and other exciting rewards. Moreover, it will save you time and you will get the products delivered to the doorstep.

Renovating a house can be exciting and tiring at the same time. But with smart shopping and innovative planning, you can renovate your house by maintaining your taste without exceeding the budget. If you have more queries or want to know more about home inspection, you can reach out to us on MACJ.

Signs of dampness or moisture are common but not the knowledge about its sources and effects. Read this article to know the sources and effects of dampness in a house.

Top 7 Sources of Dampness in a House & its Harmful Effects

Flaky paint, leaky ceiling, wet and patchy walls – Aren’t these a common sight in most houses we see around us? Let’s face it, our own houses, too, must have had one or a few of these imperfections at some point in time. We noticed; we disliked; we thought of doing something about it; and perhaps, we moved on! – Often, taking inadequate or no measures at all. But do you know – dampness is one of the most harmful things that can cause a building to deteriorate prematurely? Worse – it affects the health of the residents severely.

To prevent a house from becoming damp, we must know the reasons behind it. Faulty sills, bad masonry work, subsoil water in the foundation are just some of the most common causes of dampness in a building. What are the other sources of dampness? What are the effects of it? Read on to know it all.

Sources of Dampness in Buildings

There are a number of sources of dampness in buildings. Some of the common causes are as follows:

Improper plumbing installation in buildings can lead to leakage/dampness problems with gradual use.

1. Improper Plumbing Installation

Improper plumbing installation in buildings can lead to leakage/dampness problems with gradual use. This can be due to the following few things:

  • If FTA (female threaded adapter) of a plumbing fitting is installed inside the tiles then an extension piece is required. This creates an extra joint in the pipeline which may lead to leakage.
  • UPVC pipe used in a hot water line is an example of the incorrect material selected as per its properties. In such cases, the material, unable to withstand high temperatures, will begin to degrade and break down leading to leakage.
  • The wrong solvent-material used for joining pipes can be another cause of plumbing failure. For example, if pipes are made of UPVC, the solvent or glue to be used should also be UPVC-compatible. The same is applicable to CPVC pipes. Any incompatibility here can lead to leakage and dampness due to a less firm joint.
  • If grouting is not provided at the junction around bathroom floor drain outlet pipe, there will be spreading of moisture. This will ultimately lead to unhealthy & unhygienic conditions for residents and can lead to deterioration at below storey ceiling surfaces in due course of time.
  • Loose plumbing fitting or inadequate tightening of plumbing fitting with FTA or other faulty workmanship at the time of installation etc. are also one of the common reasons which lead to leakage/ dampness problem.
If the waterproofing membranes are not overlapped properly, rainwater can seep through the gaps.

2. Faulty waterproofing

If the waterproofing membranes are not overlapped properly, rainwater can seep through the gaps. Besides, wrong sloping, defective junctions between the slab of the roof, terrace and parapet of the wall, and clogged outlets may also lead to water stagnation resulting in dampness.

Moisture intrusion can also happen if no fillet or drip mould is provided at the chhajja.

3. The intrusion of rainwater through walls

Most common damage inside homes occurs due to water seepage from the gaps between window frame & external wall. Gap will be a source for moisture to flow inside the home. If gaps are not filled properly, it will lead to moisture intrusion, paint deterioration & damage to inside walls.

Moisture intrusion can also happen if no fillet or drip mould is provided at the chhajja. Also, If the paint used on the exterior wall is not of water-repelling variety then moisture can settle beneath the coat and spread internally over time. In both cases, exterior walls begin to deteriorate fast due to moisture.

Sometimes defective construction materials are used during the construction of the building which can lead to construction quality issues.

4. Poor construction materials

Sometimes defective construction materials are used during the construction of the building which can lead to construction quality issues. For example: If poor quality materials are used like sand with excess salt then efflorescence will happen sooner or later. Poor quality bricks will swell upon absorbing rainwater leading to dampness.

5. Indoor Plants

Most plants release moisture into the surrounding air through small pores called stomata on the leaves – a process called transpiration. This increases the moisture content1 of the indoor air. But not all plants are humidifying. Moreover, you must know how much to water your potted green friends so that they do not release excess moisture into the air. A little knowledge of indoor gardening can help you avoid dampness in your home while still making it eco-friendly and sustainable.

Vegetation growth around the wall is very harmful as vegetation in and around the walls leads to cracks in them and over time these cracks widen.

6. Vegetation

Vegetation growth around the wall is very harmful as vegetation in and around the walls leads to cracks in them and over time these cracks widen. Water deposits in these cracks causing further dampness.

Dampness is inevitable if your house is improperly ventilated.

7. Improper Ventilation

Dampness is inevitable if your house is improperly ventilated. Numerous processes like exhalation by the inmates of the house, cooking, and use of geyser in the bathroom add moisture to the indoor air. If the area is closed, this excess moisture gets trapped. There should be proper air circulation in the house so that an optimum moisture level is maintained and indoor air quality never deteriorates.

Dampness has serious consequences on the health of a building.

Adverse effects of Dampness in a House / Property

Dampness has serious consequences on the health of a building. It needs to be dealt with urgency. Otherwise, a culmination of all these damages may eventually lower its life expectancy.

  • Pest and insect growth: Damp households cause unhygienic conditions of living. Damp places attract microbes and insects. Damp places are breeding places of gregarious pests like mosquitoes, flies, and termites. Respiratory problems, wheezing skin rashes, allergies are often found in inhabitants living in damp areas.
  • Electric appliance damage: Moisture present in a house, if it comes in contact with the electric appliances, will damage them. This can also lead to serious problems like electrocution of the appliance and the person handling it might suffer an electric shock. So it is very important that areas around the switchboard and wiring have no moisture deposition.
  • Damage to doors and walls: Damp environment can have serious damage to wooden doors and windows. This leads to termite infestation in them along with swelling up of the wood. Doors and windows may even completely get damaged becoming function-less. In severe cases, installations might get damaged.
  • Damage to wooden furniture: A humid indoor atmosphere can affect the wooden furniture and other materials made of wood in the house. Wood absorbs moisture and swells up and this is certainly not good for the longevity of the furniture.
  • Corrosion of metal: Metal appliances, furniture or other items may get corroded due to the presence of moisture. Metals attract moisture and rust or lose the sheen with time. Metal installations may even become brittle and break off. This is dangerous especially in the case of railings and grills.
  • The efflorescence of plaster, bricks and paint: As already discussed, dampness renders bricks and plaster to crumble. Porosity increases and the strength of the materials decrease which is harmful to the building. The coating of paint also turns flaky and tends to fall off. This gives a nasty feel & look to the house. Peeling of the paint exposes the walls and ceiling to further damage.
  • Unpleasant-looking household: Damp patches on the walls with algal spores growing on them give a bad and unwelcoming look to the house. A stale, suffocating smell fills the air. This smell can cause allergy and skin diseases in many individuals.
A damp house is a constant source of illness. Dampness affects your two most important assets - your home and your health.

Effects of Dampness – On Health

A damp house is a constant source of illness. It causes:

  • Respiratory ailments: Allergic rhinitis, chronic to acute breathing problems or asthma
  • Skin ailments: Rashes and redness
  • Recurring cold and flu
  • Depression

Therefore practically, dampness affects your two most important assets- your home and your health. Can anything be scarier than this?

Watch the video for better understanding:

Last but not the least, dampness lowers your living standards. Who would like to reside in a perennially cold, stale-smelling house? To avoid this unpleasant situation, the source and the cause of damp should be identified first, and then repaired for a permanent cure.

Nowadays, waterproofing and damp-proofing materials are available widely in the market to shield your abode from dampness and its harmful effects. With the advancement in technology, effective moisture and damp assessment can be done with thermal imaging technology, as well. You must opt for professionals for effective detection of dampness for ensuring a healthy home.

Don’t make living with dampness a habit. Take definitive steps to get rid of this hidden devil corroding away your hygiene and safety silently but steadily.