10 Ways To Lower Your Water Bills

Pixabay. CCO Licensed.

Just been hit by an expensive water bill? While other utilities can often cost us more overall, water is an expense that can still have a tendency of sneaking up on people (especially given that many of us pay it in annual or bi-annual installments).

Fortunately, water bills are one of the easiest utility bills to reduce. It’s largely a case of reducing your water consumption in and around the home. Here are just several ways in which you may be able to spend less on water.

Fix any leaks

A leak could have a significant impact on your water bill. This could be anything from a dripping tap to a corroded pipe to a damaged seal on a washing machine.

Most leaks are easy to pinpoint – it could be a simple case of following the dripping sound or looking out for water damage. In other cases, a leak may require a bit of detective work to solve. A plumber should be able to help you find the source. Indications that there may be a leak besides unusually high water bills include unexplained damp, unexplained trickling sounds or low water pressure.

Upgrade old plumbing fixtures

You may also be able to reduce your water consumption by upgrading any old water guzzling fixtures. Old toilets, old washing machines and old showers could all be worth replacing.

Sites like Plumbers Stock sell modern toilets and showers that can help you to save water. You can meanwhile shop at appliance stores for energy-efficient washing machines. While buying new fixtures isn’t cheap, you’ll likely save money in the long run. This could be particularly the case if old fixtures are already starting to leak.

Don’t leave the tap running

Do you leave the tap running while brushing your teeth? Or do you leave it running while doing the washing up? If so, you could be wasting unnecessary water.

You only need to run a tap while rinsing your brush. As for doing the washing up, it’s much more economical to fill a bowl with water and wash all your utensils in this bowl rather than to wash each utensil under a running tap. This can be a hard habit to kick, but could save you some money.

Buy a dishwasher

On average, most people use up more water when washing dishes by hand than they do when using a dishwasher. As a result, these appliances can be worthy investments.

A decent dishwasher should be able to clean all its contents with one cycle. Some machines have economy settings, but these may not always provide a thorough clean. You can find guides at sites like Expert Reviews that list the best dishwashers on the market.

Certain utensils such as pots and pans may still benefit from being soaked in hot water to get rid of tough food debri. It’s best to leave pans to soak immediately after cooking so that food has less of a chance to harden up.

Wash full loads

In order to reduce water consumed by your washing machine, make sure that each load is full. If you’re only washing half loads, you’ll be having to use your washing machine twice as much to get through all your laundry.

Don’t worry too much about separating colors – it’s a good idea to separate whites and to be careful with new clothes (they’re more likely to run), but otherwise most colors won’t affect each other.

It is possible to overload a washing machine, but generally this involves stuffing it until nothing else will fit. Fill up the drum, but don’t try to squeeze clothes into it like a suitcase.

Shower more, bath less

You can also save water by taking less baths and more showers. The average person uses 30 gallons when filling a bathtub, while the average 10 minute shower uses up no more than 20 gallons.

If you prefer longer showers, then baths may be more economical. However, for most people showering uses up less water.

Avoid ironing

If you do a lot of ironing, you could be consuming water every time you fill it up (although admittedly not a lot in the grand scheme of things). Ironing isn’t always necessary – if you hang up clothing to dry immediately after washing, you can usually prevent most creases from setting in. Besides, ironing is a chore that most people don’t want to do anyway. So why do it?

Use your vegetable water

Most of us chuck away the excess water when boiling or steaming vegetables, however there are times when it could be reused. Vegetable water makes a great base for broth and it can even be used to cook pasta in straight after, helping to add flavor.

There’s also the option of letting it get cold and using it to water plants with – it will be full of nutrients that could benefit your shrubs.

Harvest rainwater

When it comes to watering your lawn and plants, you can save a lot of money on water by harvesting rainwater. While you shouldn’t drink rainwater without purifying it first, it can be ideal for watering plants with and will save you using your mains water supply.

You can collect water by using a rain barrel. Many of these have taps attached from which you can fit a hose or simply fill up a watering can.

Consider recycling greywater

It’s possible to re-use waste water from your taps and shower for toilet flushing. This could help to save you a lot of water and a lot of money. Fitting a greywater recycling system isn’t cheap so this is definitely a long-term investment, but one that could be well worth looking into if you plan to stay in your home for the foreseeable future.

Please follow and like us:

Five Tips For Keeping Your Decking Cool On Sizzling Summer Days

Decking is becoming increasingly popular among homeowners looking for ways to create outdoor living spaces. These areas act like rooms in your garden, allowing you to enjoy your lifestyle while getting some much-needed fresh air at the same time. 

 

But there’s a problem: decking areas have a nasty habit of getting warm in the summer. Too warm, if you ask some!

 

Fortunately, there are several things that you can do to keep them fresh. Take a look at the following ideas. 

 

Invest In A Mist Fan

 

Mist fans are amazing devices – and fun to use even if summers don’t get hot in your neck of the woods. On the outside, they look similar to regular fans. However, when you turn them on, they emit a spray of fine water particles which the action of the fan turns into mist. The mist then evaporates in hot weather, cooling the air coming from the fan. It’s kind of ingenious. It is like having an air conditioning unit but outside. 

 

Because mist fans rely on evaporation, they work best in dry, arid climates. In humid areas, the effect is less pronounced. 

 

Get A Retractable Awning

 

When it comes to keeping your decking fresh, shade is your friend, at least according to Lifestyle Patios. By stopping the sun’s light from hitting the deck material, you prevent it from heating up and making your decking area uncomfortably warm. Having a retractable awning also means that you can bask in direct sunlight when it’s not too hot, giving you the best of both worlds. 

 

Invest In A Permanent, Reflective Roof

Pixabay – CC0 License

 

If you really want to stop your decking from getting too warm, then your best bet is to invest in a permanent, reflective roof. As light comes down from the sun, white or reflective roofs bounce it back into space, preventing it from imparting any energy from your terrace area. 

 

Buy Heat-Proof Furniture

Pixabay – CC0 License

 

Metal, wooden, and even some plastic outdoor furniture can heat up excessively in direct sunlight, making it uncomfortable for you to sit on. The furniture absorbs energy contained in light, causing the material to heat up so much that it could burn your bottom. 

 

Now, though, a range of manufacturers sell so-called “heat-proof” outdoor chairs and recliners – furniture that will remain cool to the touch, even in direct sunlight.

 

Install A Ceiling Fan

 

If you have a roof over your decking, you may be able to install a ceiling fan. 

 

The way that ceiling fans work is very similar to how mist fans work. Both rely on evaporation of one kind or another. 

 

But whereas mist fans rely on the evaporation of water fed through the device itself, ceiling fans rely on your sweat. The cool breeze from ceiling fans interacts with water droplets on the surface of your skin, causing them to evaporate and thereby keeping you cool. Thus, these fans simply speed up the way that nature keeps you cool anyway.

 

So, how will you keep yourself comfortable while out on your decking this summer?

Please follow and like us:

Managing Home Horrors The Easy Way

Homeowners everywhere spend a fortune making their homes look beautiful. Sometimes, however, home horrors happen and all of that money and time can be wasted. It’s time to check your home insurance policies, roll up your sleeves, and deal with the nasties that might be lurking in your house:

 

Mold And Mildew

Mold and mildew can be more harmful than you think. Breathing in the spores that can be released into the air can cause chest infections and complications if your health is already poor. Not all mildew or mold is easy to spot. The most obvious signs of a problem are those black, gray and brown stains in the corners, or around the bathroom tiles. Pink mold can also be lurking in your tub and around your taps. Nasty stuff! Steam is the safest approach to killing it, although bleach will whiten the stain again.

Picture source

 

To prevent these nasties turning up, check your guttering when it rains. If it’s overflowing or leaking onto your brickwork, damp can penetrate your home resulting in mold. It can also erode the bricks over time, so it should be fixed straight away. Use your extractor fans in the kitchen and bathroom every time you run the hot tap or boil water. You can use a hygrometer to check your interior humidity levels are kept low.

 

Pests

Insects, termites, rats, and mice can all be lurking in large numbers in your home. You might never see them, but chances are you’ll hear them. You might smell them as well. Unfortunately, these little critters don’t live for long. If they die in your property, the stench could become overwhelming. Finding them is tough if they’re between the walls or under the floors. You should find the best exterminators you can to deal with this kind of situation.

Picture source

 

To reduce the risk of infestation, make sure any wood treatments for your home are up to date. Block external holes and gaps to stop them getting in. Always vacuum up crumbles as soon as possible so you can cut off their food source. Finally, try a sonic deterrent. You won’t be able to hear it but the little blighters will hate to go anywhere near them.

 

Leaks

Not only could leaks lead to the mold and mildew we don’t want, but it could damage the home too. Holes in the roof can easily let rain in. This will then drip down onto ceilings and perhaps run across them to more vulnerable points. Over time, the water saturation will cause substantial damage to the plaster, wood, and even the brick work. The last thing you want is for the ceiling to fall down or your brand new basement renovation to flood.

Picture source

 

Other leaks can come from damaged pipework or drippy taps. Not only does the noise drive you mad, but the cost of all that lost water can soon add up. Finding a leak isn’t always easy. If you’re seeing a lot of water coming in, it’s time to turn off the supply at the mains and get a plumber to permanently fix the problem. Try a dehumidifier to help you dry the place out again.

Please follow and like us:

Want To Become More Healthier? This Is How

We can’t hide from the fact that these days our health is vitally important. Of course, the advice we hear is often mixed and changes. One minute you can’t drink wine, the next minute one glass of red each day is good for the heart. The same can be said for exercising too much or too little, drink more water or less. But the main subject of all the headlines is that your health matters and more of us should be making it our priorities. However, there is more to it than just what you eat, your health can be improved in many different ways and placing some focus on each will enable you to feel much better on the inside and out. I thought I should share with you some of the easy and simple ways you can improve your health.

Image

 

There is no hiding from the fact that your diet is vitally important

 

Your diet is so important for your health. What you put into your body helps it to function for whatever it needs to do. Putting a lot of junk food or sugary treats into your body on a daily basis can hinder your health instead of making you thrive. Of course, it is always okay to have things in moderation, but a well-balanced diet is better than denying yourself certain types of foods. Your body needs all the food groups to take out the vitamins and nutrients it needs to function. Nourish your body with lots of decent vegetables, fruits, lean meats and you can’t go far wrong. Some people even consider changing their lifestyle when it comes to food and tries out different ways of life such as becoming a vegan or even just being a vegetarian. Again, this can be a great way to boost your health. Just ensure that your diet still remains balanced.

 

You have to exercise in order to feel good

 

Of course, a good diet goes hand in hand with exercise. Normally those are the two things any one focuses on when it comes to improving their health. However, exercising is something not to dismiss when it comes to being more healthier. It is always recommended to try and take a cardio sort of workout three times a week for at least 30 minutes. Which for many of us, is more than achievable. However, combining that with other exercise options like swimming or yoga would be a great idea to improve your health in different ways. Yoga especially can help with your muscles and also your mind to prioritize what you do. Joining a gym isn’t always the way forward for some, so consider just being more active, walking locally, or even using websites like YouTube for workout inspiration.

Image

 

Sometimes you have to tackle hidden health issues

 

Our health is more than just the food we eat, and what we do, some people struggle with hidden health issues like mental health, gut problems or even things like silent reflux. It’s important to work on those health problems and research them to ensure that you are treating them in the right way to improve your health. For example, there are some things that are important to know about silent reflux like how it can be misdiagnosed regularly or even how the most prescribed treatment for it doesn’t work too well. Same can be said for things like treating anxiety or depression. Too often for some health concerns, it isn’t always a one size fits all resolve.

 

Drink more water

 

Water is one of the easiest ways to start improving your health it can be the simplest change you make. Just increasing your water intake alone can improve your energy levels, improve skin tone, and even help with the quality of sleep you get. It is fairly obvious to do, but something we should all do a little more of.

 

Sleep is far more important than you realize

 

Your sleep is just as important as the time you spend awake. While you sleep, your body is repairing itself from the day, relaxing, and also allowing you to rest your mind and help calm any stress levels or anxiety you might be feeling. To improve the quality of sleep you get, the first place to start would be to switch off the technology at least an hour before bed. Instead develop a new bedtime routine of your own consisting of a warm bath, a hot drink and even some time to read.

 

I hope these tips help you become healthier.

 

Please follow and like us:

Healthy Habits For Life

When it comes to your long-term health, getting into the right habits really does make all the difference. The whole point of a habit is that it is something that is very difficult to break. A lot of the time, we naturally associate the word ‘habit’ with the word ‘bad’, so taking back the word to mean something positive should be your first aim! With health and fitness, people often tend to set short-term goals. They may go on a fad diet for a few weeks or go through a sudden burst of exercise to get beach body ready. But, in reality, you are much better off focusing your energy on developing some good long-term habits. Wondering what some of these are? Well, wonder no more!

 

Eat Breakfast Every Day

Photo Credit

 

Far too many of us don’t eat breakfast in the morning, so if this is you, it is time to make a change. People who eat this morning meal tend to take in more vitamins and minerals and reduce their cholesterol count. They are also less likely to overeat during the day. There is no single ‘perfect’ breakfast that you need to eat every day, but you should be aiming for something which includes some carbohydrates, protein and a small amount of fat. Though this may be a tricky habit to begin with since your body won’t be used to eating in the morning, it is beneficial in the long run.

 

Get Enough Sleep

Photo Credit

 

This one sounds simple enough, but a huge number of people don’t get the sleep they need which is so important in your physical and mental health. Sleep deprivation can affect memory, learning and logical reasoning. Not only this, if you are tired, you are a lot less likely to have the motivation you need to continue exercising on a regular basis. A major issue that people are having these days is that they are continually surrounded by screens. Studies have found that if you are staring at a screen just before you go to bed, this can affect your body’s serotonin production which is the sleep hormone. Try having a no screens policy in the bedroom to see what a difference this could make.

 

Set Your Exercise Times

Photo Credit

 

Obviously, there are no guarantees when it comes to your health which is why you need to learn more about the insurance options that are available to you, but exercising on a regular basis is one of the best ways to maintain your long-term health. As we have talked about at the start, the problem comes when people don’t commit themselves to exercise on a long-term basis. That is why you should set yourself certain times of the week to exercise and stick to them as closely as possible. If you have already set aside time for yourself to work out, this will become a fixture of your schedule. If you are struggling for exercise motivation, there are plenty of ways that you can maintain it including getting a workout buddy, setting yourself goals and varying up your routines.

 

Protect Your Skin

Photo Credit

 

A lot of people don’t give their skin the attention it deserves, which is bad considering how important is is to our overall health and wellbeing. The UV rays from the sun are always a risk, so you should always wear sunscreen even on cloudy days. If you struggle to remember to put this on all the time, you should use a moisturiser with an SPF factor so it becomes a normal part of your skincare routine. Overexposure to the sun can cause sunburn, skin texture changes, dilated blood vessels and skin cancer.

 

Drink Plenty of Water (and Tea)

Photo Credit

 

Drinking plenty of water is essential to your wellbeing. If you are one of those people who often forgets, you could try keeping a refillable water bottle in your bag and set reminders on your phone telling you to drink water every couple of hours. There are so many reasons why the body needs to get enough water, but essentially, your joints need it to stay in motion, and your brain, heart, kidneys and liver need it to function properly. Rather than going for your usual cup of coffee in the morning, you could instead try drinking tea which has been shown to have a whole myriad of health properties.

 

Though there are plenty more healthy habits you could get into, this guide provides you with a good overview of some of the main ones.          

Please follow and like us:

How To Keep Cool This Summer!

Image

 

It’s going to be a hot summer this year, so preparations should be in order! Instead of putting up with the scorching heat and wishing you could transport yourself into an igloo – get creative and find your own ways to keep cool.

It’s really not as complicated as you’d expect it to be. So here’s a list of all the different options you have this summer.

 

Cold water bottle

It is exactly the same idea as to how you would use a hot water bottle in the winter, but instead of filling it up with boiling water, instead, fill it and put it in the freezer. You’ll have the perfect sized ice pack that’ll last for at least an hour or two.

 

Damp sleep

Dunk your towel into ice cold water and use that as a blanket when you go to sleep, this will keep your body temperature down long enough for you to fall asleep. You should probably keep a dry towel under you though so you don’t get your whole bed soaking wet!

 

Pop them in the freezer

Put your clothes or bed sheets in a plastic bag, and place them in the freezer for a couple of minutes before you want to use them. It’ll be a great quick fix if you’re too hot.

 

Get loose, not naked

You would expect to be cooler if you strip bare instead of wearing pajamas in bed, but this can actually leave you feeling very hot and sticky. So it’s best to choose some loose, light cotton clothing instead. – Obviously not something that covers your whole body, but shorts and a tank top would be ideal.

 

Air con

If you haven’t already thought about getting a decent air conditioner – now is your chance. There are many on the market to choose from, so if you want to start looking, acpulse.com may be the best place to start.

 

Make your own cooler

All you will need is a fan, ice, and something to put the ice in.

Put as much ice inside a pan, or something similar, and position the fan so that it blows the icy air in your direction. It sounds silly but it 100% works! – Try it and see for yourself.

 

Hang it up

Attach a wet sheet in front of an open window, as the wind blows through, you will be getting a cool gentle breeze entering the room.

 

Put it on your pulse

If you need to cool down asap, grab something icy and place it wherever your pulse is. So this can be your wrists, your neck, your groin or even behind your knees. This will give you an instant relief.

 

Stick to cotton

Cotton sheets and clothes are a wise choice when the weather gets hot because they allow a lot of ventilation and airflow compared to polyester or silk. The lighter the color – the better. White reflects heat remember, whereas darker colors absorb it.

 

Fly solo

If it’s too hot on those summer nights, an effective option is to kick your partner out of bed. It may sound harsh, but sometimes you just have to be. Cuddling with your other half will just double the body heat between the two of you, leaving you drowning in sweat… Ew.

 

Go wild

If you have one, use a hammock to sleep in instead of a bed. Because of the way it is suspended, you will allow yourself a lot more airflow from all angles.

 

Go hard or go home

Instead of sleeping in a cozy, snuggly bed, why not go back to basics and sleep on a rustic straw-like matt. Sure, they may not give you as much comfort as a double bed would, but they won’t be anywhere near as hot.

 

Drink plenty of water

We all know how great water is for us, but it’s so much more important to drink it than you normally would in the next few months. The more you sweat, the more water you lose, which means you can end up with a nasty case of dehydration.

Just don’t drink too much before you go to bed otherwise you’ll be waking up in the middle of the night, sweaty and needing the bathroom!

 

Nice cold shower

Having a cold shower sounds pretty daunting, but when you get hot and desperate, this will be your favorite thing to do. The sensation of the cool water gliding over your body will leave you feeling pure bliss.

 

Get down low

Hot air rises right? So set up camp as low to the floor as possible. If that means dragging your mattress downstairs and sleeping in the kitchen – so be it!

 

Turn the lights off

Keep your rooms dark and aired. Even if you have energy saving light bulbs, they still give off heat, so turn everything off and open the windows instead.

 

Unplug your things

Believe it or not, even your appliances that you leave plugged in at night can give off heat. So unplug your charger! Plus it’ll save you energy, essentially cutting the costs of your bill.

 

Stay away from the oven

Summer isn’t the time to start cooking tuna pasta bakes or lasagna; it’s far too hot for that.

Go grocery shopping and get yourself lots of fresh ingredients, and a whole load of fruit and veg. Get creative and make some big salads. Not only will this be a healthy option, but it’s the perfect food to eat when you’re hot and exhausted. No one wants to be full in the sun!

 

Keep your feet cool

When you’re cold, you are told to wear socks to instantly warm your whole body up. So it works the opposite way too. Get a bowl of cold water and dunk your feet inside. It may be tough at first, but within seconds you’ll feel cooler! Another thing you can do is keep the bowl by your bed so you can have a cool off if you get too hot throughout the night.

body up. So it works the opposite way too. Get a bowl of cold water and dunk your feet inside. It may be tough at first, but within seconds you’ll feel cooler! Another thing you can do is keep the bowl by your bed so you can have a cool off if you get too hot throughout the night.

Pexels

“This post may contain affiliate links”

Please follow and like us:

I’m turning 50 and I like it…. A fishing trip.

“Did you hear that?”, I turned to look at what I was supposed to be hearing, but all I could see is water. At that point, I thought maybe my husband or myself were literally going crazy. It is 6:30 in the morning and the sun is just coming up and we are sitting in a boat on the water….

My husband and I have been married for almost 18 years now. I came into this marriage with three children, who we have raised together and are now adults. Every weekend, he loves to go fishing, I was sitting on the boat reflecting how this wasn’t my favorite past time, but Robby, my hubby, sure does love it.

So off we go this morning to fish the day away…As the day started I landed the first redfish and thought wow this isn’t so bad after all. I began teasing my husband who is ad avid fisherman and really great at it. I then land an even bigger redfish than before, of course, each time he put his pole down and netted for me as I continued to tease him about how he better be glad I came cause at least we get to eat supper!!

As the day started I landed the first redfish and thought wow this isn’t so bad after all. I began teasing my husband who is an avid fisherman and really great at it. I then landed an even bigger redfish than before. Of course, each time he had put his pole down and net for me. I continued to tease him about how he better be glad I came because at least we get to eat supper!!

 

This continued throughout the morning while I caught 4 big keepers to his one, then it dawned on me, he is doing this to make sure I have a great time. Each time he would stop fishing to net my fish, recheck my bait and make sure he put me in a position to catch the big one.

 

I realized right then, how happy I am. I am not just talking about catching the most fish but in life. I turn 50 this year and was determined to not be depressed about it but what I didn’t realize is how happy I could be about it.

I am married to my best friend, blessed with three successful children, have three amazing grandsons and I still have my parents and we love God.

Even after our morning fishing trip, he cleaned the boat, cleaned the fish and offered to fry me up some for supper. Now I know I am blessed.

Please follow and like us:

Rockport Texas #rockporttexas #rockport Flounder Recipe

We bought a condo in Rockport, Texas, which is located on Aransas Bay, home of some great fishing and beautiful water. I have had the pleasure of the most beautiful photo opportunities. I am by no means a professional but you can’t go wrong when you are surrounded by beauty. I wanted to share a few of my favorite pictures.

Our Condo is facing the water and we have a 750′ pier, as you can tell I love taking pictures of the pier!! Especially the sunset.

This year I want to try and take some with people fishing in the background. I love walking down the beach road and listening to the water, and finding new photo opportunities.

These are just a few of my favorites, hopefully I will have more in the next couple weeks to share.

We loving fishing here, we catch flounder, trout and red fish. Our favorite is flounder. It is some of the best fish you will ever eat!

I have an amazing flounder covered and smothered recipe:

Season and bake flounder (we use Tony Chachere’s)

Melt butter and onions in a pan add flour and a broth (we use veggie broth)

mix until smooth, then add craw fish tails cook about 7 minutes longer.

We serve this over rice and it is to die for!!

Craw fish tail cover and smother mixture

 

 

Please follow and like us: