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Tuesday, May 19, 2015
One of the main areas in a kitchen, outside of appliances, that homeowners really focus on when having updates done is their cabinets. The color and style of cabinets can really show the age of the kitchen.
 

Kitchen Cabinet Remodeling Trends

 
Lighter kitchens are the common trend in today's remodels. White, or off-white, Shaker-style doors create a clean and light look for any style home. 
 
The lazy Susan that once was found within all kitchens has now been replaced with more modern storage options. Cabinets are now lined with pullout trays, bread boxes, and narrow spaces to organize pans, utensils, and spices. Drawer inserts are also now being added more to avoid the dreaded clutter drawer.
 
The standard cabinet is also being replaced with glass-front doors that create a break in floor to ceiling closed cabinetry. A few of these cabinets in any kitchen can make it feel much more open. 
 
Cabinets are also being used to mask appliances. For instance, placing a refrigerator behind a cabinet door. This gives a more cohesive look to the kitchen. 
 
A more dimensional trend to kitchens is to place contrasting colored cabinets in a kitchen. An example would be to have white, standard-placed cabinets and black island or cabinet in the center placed in the kitchen. 
 
There is also a growing trend to do away with cabinets altogether and replace them with open shelving. Mixing the two also helps to remove heavy cabinetry and still give the desired storage space. 
 

Options for Updating Kitchen Cabinets

 
When updating dark cabinets, there are several options a homeowner has. The least expensive option would be to simply paint the cabinets. However, they could also reface the cabinets; this would include applying a new wood veneer to the cabinet bases and installing new door and drawers. More expensive options for making kitchen cabinets look more modern include replacing them completely or have them stripped, bleached, and refinished.  
 
 
 
The Longacre Company has the necessary contractors for any type of kitchen remodeling project in the Pottstown, Limerick, Royersford, and surrounding Southeastern Pennsylvania areas. 
 
Wednesday, April 29, 2015
Recently, the Longacre team had a bathroom remodeling project in Gilbertsville. Below are some before and after pictures of the project.
 

The Toilet

Before After
 

The Sink

Before After
 

The Shower

Before After
 
 
 
The Longacre Company has the necessary contractors for your bathroom remodel. They work with any bathroom renovation project in the Pottstown, Royersford, Limerick, and surrounding Southeastern Pennsylvania area from beginning to end.
 
Friday, April 10, 2015
 
After spending time meeting with bathroom contractors to find the the right one that meets your needs and project, it is time to invite them into your home to begin work. As a homeowner it can be a bit of a struggle to live with this process and remain sane. So what do you do?
 

Prepare Yourself

 
When having bathroom renovations made, it is best to prepare yourself for a different way to live while the work goes on. It can be a bit tedious having your personal space invaded and the mess that will occur, but if you plan ahead you will be all the happier for it.
  

Relocate

 
For your own sake and sometimes for the sake of your bathroom contractor, it is best to find solace away from where the work will be taking place. For some people this means relocating to the other side of their home and for others it means camping out at a different place altogether.
 
 
Since taking a vacation is not really a realistic idea at the same time that you are having your bathroom remodeled, it is best to try  and nail down the times that your workers plan to be in your home. If you plan on being home, it is also suggested to maybe invest in a pair of noise-cancelling headphones.
 

Abiding the Dust

 
Remodeling equals dust. There is no way around that fact. You signed up for it the moment you decided on a renovation. 
 
To prevent as much tracking from the bathroom to the rest of the house cover floors exiting the room. Also, make sure that workers are laying down drop cloths. 
 

Relax

 
This may sound completely impossible while work is being on your home, but trusting your bathroom contractor is the best way to do this. Yes, ask questions and be involved in the process, but do not let all the small detail stress you out. Know that unexpected problems are bound to arise, but you went through the work of hiring a contractor that knows what they are doing so let them.  
 

Be a Good Neighbor

 
If your remodel is taking place within close proximity of other homes, it is a good idea to do a little sucking up. Bring over a gift of some sort to let them know you appreciate their patience and understanding.  
 
 
Resources: Finishing Edge, HGTV
 
 
The Longacre Company bathroom contractors can help with your bathroom remodel. The work with any bathroom renovation project in the Pottstown, Royersford, Limerick, and surrounding Southeastern Pennsylvania area from beginning to end. 
 
Tuesday, March 31, 2015

 

The frigid winter has finally turned to spring, which can mean many things, including spring cleaning. So, now that everything has thawed out, is your heating and cooling system still running correctly and efficiently?

HVAC maintenance is imperative this time of the year. Failure to maintain your system could result in a breakdown right when the weather reaches its warmest, costing you time and money, or worse. Try these HVAC contractor tips and prepare your HVAC system for the ever-changing weather conditions before it is too late.

  • Change Filters: This is usually the quickest, easiest and most crucial fix. Your air filter will rack up the dirt and grime in the winter so come spring it is time to change it out and replace it with a new air filter. This simple change can better your indoor air quality and prolong the life of your unit. As the weather gets warmer and more pollinated, you may have to even continue to change your air filters out once a month or so. Keep in mind, a dirty air filter can increase your utility bill by up to 15 percent.
  • Program Thermostats: Using a programmable thermostat can save you and your unit money and energy by only allowing devices to work only when they are needed. This way while you are gone on vacation or at work all day, your unit knows it can raise the temperature, thus saving you about 10 percent on energy bills. 
  • Clean Coils: Much like your filters, your unit's coils will also suffer a build-up of dirt, dust, debris, and worse throughout the winter and stormy weather. You will want to remove as much of the debris as you can from your coils by turning off the power to your system, opening the metal cage, and hosing the coils down until they are clean.
  • Go Green: Making energy-conscious decisions can greatly improve your home and HVAC system. This can include adding a ceiling fan to a room to take some pressure off your air conditioner or even closing or shading windows to keep your home cooler. Additionally, you could switch to an energy efficient HVAC system altogether, as this more modern model is known to lower energy costs and be better for everyone.
  • Insulate: If your duct work is leaking it is literally like throwing money out the door, and you could be losing as much as 25 percent on your energy bill each month. Be sure your home and your ducts are sealed and insulated in order to stop leaks, which will save you energy and money, as well as save the life of your system.
  • Get Help: You cannot do it all alone so do not be afraid to ask for help. That is why we are here. Whether you do not know what you are doing, or you just don't have time, feel free to call a Longacre HVAC contractor to do the dirty work. If your system needs a big fix, routine maintenance, or only an inspection, we are ready for it all and can give you the final word on where your system stands. Additionally, having a professional do maintenance is not only safer, but sometimes essential, as there are some tasks that should only be performed by someone certified in the process or service.
  • Replace It: Sometimes it is all right to let go. In many cases, especially those where a unit is more than 15 years old, it is time to consider a replacement. If your air conditioner is not working completely or properly, is costing you more money than it is worth, or is unsafe, it is time to go ahead and update to a newer model. Though it may cost you money at the time, newer systems are known to be up to 50 percent more efficient and can begin to save you money on your energy bill immediately. Not only that, but your new system will perform so well you will wonder how you have lived without it the last few years.

 

Resources: Air Specialty, Doug's Refrigeration, T.N. Bowes Heating & Air Conditioning, Inc.

The Longacre Company is one of the leading HVAC contractors in the Pottstown, Royersford, Limerick, and surrounding Southeastern Pennsylvania area. For over 50 years, Longacre has provided high quality heating and air conditioner services to residential and commercial customers.

Posted By: Caitlin Rickard

 
 
Tuesday, March 24, 2015
 
You would not just throw money down the drain or out of the window, would you? For this reason there are plenty of ways you can improve your home daily in order to save energy and more favorable, money. Here are a few easy and effective energy saving tips that you can begin trying out today.
 
Programmable Thermostats: Did you know that by simply installing a programmable thermostat you can save a few hundred dollars a year on your heating and cooling costs? With a programmable thermostat you allow your HVAC systems to be automatically turned on, off, up, or down during peak and down times.
 
Unplug It: If you are not in a room, turn off the lights. If you are not using an appliance or electronics, unplug it. It really is that simple. “Vampire power,” or electronics sucking energy out of your home when they are not in use, has been known to cost you hundreds of dollars a year.
 
Insulate and Seal: Properly sealing off and insulating your home is another thing that can save you hundreds of dollars a year, and it is perhaps the most cost-effective. Be sure to check windows, doors, outlets, attics, basements, fireplaces, baseboards, and everywhere in between to see if there is anyway hot or cold air is sneaking out. If you find a leak, have edges and cracks filled and sealed immediately. In addition to saving you money on your energy bill, this practice will also increase the comfort in your home by keeping you warm in the winter and cool in the summer.
 
Laundry Fixes: There is a lot you can do in the laundry room to save on energy. First, if possible, try using cold water more often than not, especially if the clothes you are washing are not very dirty. Additionally, shy away from doing small loads of laundry or running a cycle for just one or two items, as this wastes water and energy. Also, do not forget, for energy and safety purposes, to clean the lint tray after every load of laundry you do. When applicable, try air-drying your clothes instead of running the dryer to excess.
 
Bathroom Products: The bathroom is another place where a lot of energy goes down the drain—literally. Install only efficient products in your bathroom, such as low-flow faucets, shower heads, toilets and tanks in an effort to conserve water and save on your bills.
 
Filters: Changing or cleaning the filters in your furnace or air conditioner regularly (about every three months) will keep your home running efficiently and can save you a little money, too. Keep in mind, leaving old filters will only dirty your appliances or slow down your air flow, costing you money either way.
 
Kitchen and Cooking: Tons of energy is wasted in the kitchen daily, which is why it is important to know some of the most efficient ways to cook. Try using a convection oven over a conventional oven, as convection ovens use about 20 percent less electricity than conventional ovens. However, if you really wish to save, microwaves trump them all, using about 80 percent less energy than conventional ovens.
 
Lighting: When it comes to the lighting situation in your home, there are a few options, natural and otherwise, you can try in order to save energy. Light your home up during the day with natural light from the outside instead of turning on every light bulb in the house. Plus, keeping your blinds open in the depths of winter can bring in some slight warmy rays of sunshine, heating your home more cost-effectively. When it is time to turn on the lights, make sure to switch to new and improved energy-efficient light bulbs, such as LEDs and CFLs, to reduce your use (and they have also been known to last longer).
 
 
 
The Longacre Company is one of the leading HVAC contractors in the Pottstown, Royersford, Limerick, and surrounding Southeastern Pennsylvania area. For over 50 years, Longacre has provided high quality heating and air conditioning services to residential and commercial customers.
 
Posted by: Caitlin Rickard
 
 
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