Category Archives: Home Maintenance

Popular Home Color Trends for 2015

If you’re looking to upgrade your home you may not need to remodel. Sometimes a fresh coat or two of paint will do the trick. This is true for kitchen cabinets, bedroom walls, exterior siding, and decks.

So you’re considering painting, but not sure on colors? According to Benjamin Moore, one of the largest paint manufacturers in the US, the color of the year for 2015 is “guilford green.” As you can see here it’s kind of a soft olive color.

Darker tones are also popular this year, particularly deep blues. According to HGTV, blue is the best color for your master bedroom. The reason is that it’s considering soothing, which can help you relax and sleep better. Furthermore, darker colors, like blue, make the room look bigger.

color trends

Due to the elements, painting your home’s exterior is an essential part of your maintenance. How often you need to paint it will depend on the siding.  For wood siding (hardboard or lapped) you’re safe with any color. However, if you go with a drastic color change you should prime with a 100% acrylic latex primer (and possibly 2 coats of paint).

For vinyl siding, avoid selecting a color that is darker than the original color. Darker colors absorb more radiant energy from the sun, which may cause the vinyl to warp.

For aluminum siding, you’ll want to avoid latex primers since they contain ammonia that has a chemical reaction with aluminum. This can the primer to expand and bubble. Instead, opt for an oil-based primer followed by 100% acrylic paint.

For stucco, the key is patching and calking appropriately. Then find a reputable acrylic latex paint. If you’re going light over a dark color you may need two coats.

If you’re considering remodeling or painting your home and you’d like to learn more about how Greyhound General can help then leave us your information here or call us at 800-568-7108. We proudly serve the entire San Diego area.

Fall Home Maintenance Tips

San Diego Fall Home MaintenancePart of the allure of the greater San Diego area is the climate. You can count on it being pleasant for pretty much the entire year. However, that doesn’t mean that we don’t experience changes in the seasons. For home owners, it’s always a good idea to prepare your home for Winter.

Here are some home maintenance to-dos to look into in the Fall…

1) Heating: did you know that heating and cooling often amount to nearly 50% of a home’s energy bill? If you’re heating or cooling you want to make sure that your home is properly sealed. Check for air leaks around windows & doors and apply weather stripping and caulking as needed. Also, check for places around the exterior where pipes enter your home from the outside. You’ll want to make sure these are sealed.

You’ll also want to make sure that your air ducts are clean. It’s generally recommended that you have these cleaned every 3-5 years. If you have a fireplace you’ll want to make sure it’s in working order. Like your air ducts, you’ll want to have your chimney swept frequently. Many professionals recommend annual chimney inspections.

2) Appliances: As the weather starts to cool you’ll want to switch the direction your ceiling fans rotate in order to create an upward draft and redistribute warmer air from the ceiling.

Fall, like Spring, is also a good time to test and change the batteries for your smoke detectors and carbon dioxide detectors. Also, if you have a humidifier you use in the Winter make sure you clean it out as bacteria and spores can build up in a dirty water tank.

3) Yard: Unlike our friends in the Mid West and East Coast, we don’t have to prepare for snow.  We also don’t have to turn off the water to outside hoses. However, it’s still a good idea cover your outdoor furniture and grill. December through March are the wettest months in San Diego.

4) Exterior: Start your exterior inspection by checking for peeling or blistering paint. This could leave your home exposed during the wetter Winter months. You’ll also want to inspect your roof, or if its been a while, have a professional roofer inspect it. Lastly, you’ll want to clean your gutters and downspouts.

In addition to having to prepare less for Winter, San Diegans also have more flexibility when it comes to home improvement. Most remodeling jobs can be done year-round. If you have an area of concern or section of your home that you’d like improved talk to Greyhound General today! Schedule your free consultation by calling 800-568-7108 or filling out the form here.


Summer Maintenance Tips for Your Home

San Diego Summer home maintenance tipsUnlike many parts of the country that experience harsh weather in the Winter and Spring, San Diegans have it mild year round. This helps keep home maintenance work from piling up. That said, it’s still a good idea to examine a few areas of your home as the weather heats up and we head into Summer.

1) Keep Cool: If you have AC, remember to replace your air filters every 30-60 days, or whatever the manufacturer recommends. You may even consider replacing them more frequently if you have pets or allergies. Also, if you’re looking to cut down on your energy bills consider installing ceiling fans.

2) Clean the Gutters: This one is self-explanatory. If you’ve let leaves and debris build up in your gutters over the past few months (or since last Fall) you need to clear them out or you risk water damage. Also consider installing a wire mesh cover for your gutters to keep larger debris out.

3) Clean the Dryer Vent: We’re not talking about the lint trap. Use a vent cleaning brush kit or vacuum to clean out the dryer vent tubing. You simply need to disconnect the tube from the wall and remove all the trapped lint.

4) Watch the Paint: Examine the paint on the exterior of your home, particularly the sides that get the most sun. Is it cracking, bubbling or peeling? You’ll want to get that taken care of so you don’t risk exposing bare wood to the elements. Just scrape/sand, prime and then paint over these areas. Also examine for mold or mildew. That can be cleaned by power washing with a mild detergent.

5) Examine Your Deck: Look for curling, cracked or rotting wood. Any boards that fit that bill will need to be replaced. Also consider re-sealing your deck every year, whether it gets a lot of sun or not. Sunlight can fade or dry the wood and shade can lead to algae and fungus spore growth. Simply power wash, remove the old seal, sand, and re-seal (after removing the dust from sanding).

These are just a handful of tips for keeping your home safe and beautiful during the Summer here in San Diego. For more information about beautifying your home through a remodel leave Greyhound a message here, or call us directly at 800-568-7108.

Winter Home Maintenance Tips

Unlike most parts of the country, we really don’t need to do a ton of prepping for Winter here in San Diego. Still, the temperature does drop significantly and most people start to turn on their heaters. Here are some tips for getting your San Diego home prepped for Winter and the Holidays.

1) Inspect your Holiday decorations: Putting up Christmas lights on your house is a fun way to get in the Holiday spirit, but it can turn into a nightmare if you don’t take a few simple safety precautions. Check your lights for any kind of wear-and-tear. Exposed or frayed wiring is a huge red flag. Also, make sure you keep your Christmas tree well-watered, as a dry tree is more likely to catch fire.

2) Keep the heat in: Make sure you inspect your HVAC filter before you kick-start it, and you’ll want to replace that filter every month if you’re running your heater on a daily basis. Also, check on your insulation. Anywhere where air can get in from the outside should be properly sealed. Check windows, doors and plumbing entering your home and make sure they’re all sealed up well.

3) Put together an emergency prep kit: You’re not going to ever have to worry about a snowstorm knocking out power in San Diego. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be prepared for other emergencies. Put together a kit full of bottled water, non-perishable food, flashlights, blankets, batteries & back up power sources and a first aid kit. Remember to replace the bottled water every 6-12 months.

4) Inspect your fireplace and chimney: A thrifty alternative to running the heater is lighting a fire. Just make sure that you properly inspect your fireplace and chimney before using it for the first time in nearly a year. You can inspect the chimney yourself for creosote, which builds up in the chimney when a fire does not have enough oxygen. Shine a flashlight at the top of the firebox, in the smoke chamber and around the damper. Check the flue as well. You may also want to pay for a chimney sweep if you haven’t done so in years. Lastly, when you light a fire, make sure the dampers are open in the bottom of the firebox (if provided), otherwise consider opening the nearest window slightly. This will prevent the fire from drawing warm air out of the rest of the house and replacing it with cold air.

Unlike most areas of the country, Winter isn’t a bad time to remodel in San Diego. If you’re thinking of remodeling your kitchen  bathroom, living room, or any area of your home, leave us a note here. You can also call Greyhound directly at 800-568-7108.