Finding the Benefits of Having Patio Covers

Patios are extremely common in most homes in the U.S. For entertainment purposes, there is probably no better place to hang around in than an open space like a patio. One can hope to have a gala time here at get-togethers with friends whom one has not met for some time due to everyone being busy in their lives. At some homes, the children enjoy themselves in the backyards while the patio serves as a resting place for their parents from where they can keep a watch on them and indulge in some quiet and peaceful reading too. Find the benefits of having patio covers in this article.

Just as some home owners love to use the outdoor kitchen area as a place to socialize, the patio too serves such a significant function at many houses. One can spend nice and quiet hours here all by oneself or together with other members of the family, so that it acts as a gathering spot for the entire family. For all your precious items at home, you use covers to protect them and keep them looking nice in the long run.

The patio too is no different and requires patio covers to maintain their beauty and longevity, especially since they are exposed to the elements of weather. This space, as we know, is good for acting as a dinner area for those times when you choose to have an informal one with your close buddies. If at such times, the weather plays spoilsport, it is going to pose a problem for you if there are no patio covers in place. It would be a source of shame since your friends would not be able to gather there due to the simple reason that you never thought of installing patio covers. In order to avoid such likely situations, it is best to get patio covers without further delay.

On the one hand, these covers would ensure the enhancement of beauty of your valuable patio and its protection in the long run; on the other hand, you would be able to utilize this area for multiple functions that would be of great joy to you and your family. Due to exposure to the unpredictable weather during the year, the patio could acquire damages which can clearly be avoided by having covers in place.

It is highly advisable to purchase patio covers if you have not given a thought to it before reading this. Imagine the rain falling, while you sit there enjoying with everyone, completely safe from getting drenched. It is important to get good covers installed that will guarantee longevity. If you have complete protection, there is no harm in placing your TV or your computer out there. In fact, many people have made this into a practice. Wood would be the best option for this area as it imparts a very subtle and soothing look, blending in seamlessly with the background. Some also like to use metal frames for the covers of their patio. Contact a manufacturer to know which type will be the best for you.

Looking for wooden patio covers in Folsom? We have the experience to help you build your Rancho Cordova covered patio covers as well.

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Getting New Office Furniture for Your Company - Read This So You Know What to Do

So, you've identified the need for brand new workplace furniture for your company. What to do next? Are you on a restrictive budget for this furniture project? You may want to give consideration to purchasing used office furniture from a reputable provider that is skilled in this category.

Or, some business furniture companies provide lower priced designs in their stock. Should you seek out a local furniture provider or find an office furniture firm online? Frequently, you can find an web-based dealer that can handle the commercial furniture project at a cheaper price. A solid, regional provider can usually provide more followup support should your office furniture suffer from service issues. Therefore, it can depend on what you find are the most significant decision factors. Either a furniture distributor or an office furniture installation company can help you when it comes to area planning to determine precisely what will work best for your office's layout.

The most crucial element to success of your workplace furniture project is the work undertaken during the course of the furniture installation. Business furniture providers, no matter if local or remote, often use the help of a 3rd party office furniture installation service provider that specializes in this kind of work. The usefulness and help of a furniture installer can't be understated; it can mean the difference between a smooth project and a catastrophe.

First-rate workplace furniture installers provide the following professional services to guarantee great success:

• Location evaluation and/or space planning - This is to guarantee the requested office furniture meshes as specified and possible problems like fire code compliance are attained.

• Go backs - Repairs or service work are performed to ensure your office furniture is properly functioning for its practical life.

• Electrical & data contractors - Installation companies can either complete the work themselves or arrange with a specialist to complete the necessary connectivity during the install.

• Warehousing - Installers usually maintain warehouse space to put away your business furniture until you are ready to go forward with the install.

• Moving and move management - Whether building repairs are expected or your operation is moving to new space, furniture installers are able to help you move any office furniture in the short term or permanently.

Here are five questions you must ask furniture installers prior to figuring out the appropriate one for your job:

1. Can this company provide you with a COI - Certificate of Insurance with reasonable workman's comp & liability coverage?

2. Can the company help with space planning?

3. Can the company supply referrals from previous clients?

4. Can they setup the electrical contractor and data contractor?

5. Just how many go backs do the company supply you with for warranty services?

This is the critical info you want to give the office furniture installers:

• The payment terms and conditions

• Physical address of a job (are elevators available)

• Period of time available during the job

• Valid flooring plans, if possible

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Design of the Highest Quality

Very few people ever consider the quality of the design when looking at buildings. When we think about quality and buildings, we typically think about construction. Is it "well built?" Is the detailing precise? Are the materials "high quality" (what does that mean, anyway)? Will it last?

Now granted, these are all important observations to make about the construction of a building, but none of them have any bearing on the building's success, or the quality of the design. So I have taken it upon myself to generate some criteria that, in my opinion, are exhibited in Architectural Design of the Highest Quality.

1. The architecture correctly identifies and responds to the problem statement.
2. The architecture is tailored to the site.
3. The architecture tells a story.
4. The architecture is placed in the context of the current times.
5. The architecture exhibits examples of original thought.
6. The architecture clearly expresses the skill of composition in both two- and three-dimensional reference.
7. The architecture contains personal meaning to the owners/users.

Design of the Highest Quality (DHQ) starts with the architect's ability to listen, think, organize, analyze, prioritize and reach conclusions against which all subsequent alternatives will be measured. This exercise starts with thorough (and sometimes numerous) discussions with the client regarding lifestyle, ideas, goals, and individual perceptions of the intended result(s) of the design. It demands that the architect take the time to think through these requirements, and correctly identify areas of conflict, harmony, mutual benefit, dependencies, etc. The architect then exhibits the ability to clearly see the analytical road map that will guide and inform the development of the building.

All building sites, no matter how small, contain clues to the proper location of buildings, rooms, and uses. As the sites grow in size, so do the options. The number of factors that come into play will vary, as well. A small, rectangular infill lot may yield as few clues as the shadows cast by an adjacent structure, or the need to make certain that adjacent neighbors not be able to see directly into large windows being contemplated. On larger sites, everything from environmental factors, to views, circulation, and issues of sustainability will all be assessed as options are developed and judged for their response to the site. DHQ will only be achieved if all valid site development alternatives have been identified and analyzed so that the final solution never leaves one pondering, "if we had only... "

Good architects are always contemplating the meaning of their architecture. Architectural metaphor has been a valid informant of design for several decades. Most are familiar with the metaphor of "the outdoor room," "the house as street," "the industrial campus," and "the building as a machine for living." Yet the notion of the architect(ture) telling a story can be much more personal, and can be brought down to very specific levels, in order to create a building of note. Typically the architectural elements, devices and design direction used to tell the story create very noticeable visual signatures for both the building and, possibly, the architect. Understanding this phenomenon, and successfully exploiting it, is a component of DHQ.

While there is no denying that an historically referential building, if executed properly, is a welcome departure from otherwise meaningless "theme" architecture, for a building's design to be of the highest quality it must exhibit the architect's understanding of the contemporary culture and the ability to respond to its clues and stimuli. For, much as we read books by Dickens and plays by Shakespeare to glimpse historically cultural slices of England, we can look to the buildings of Frank Lloyd Wright and Frank Gehry for an understanding of the American 20th Century.

An original idea successfully executed is an architect's "payback" to the profession and to the culture. Ultimately, it is what separates the leaders from the pack. These original thoughts occur at all levels of design. Some architects solve problems by looking at new ways to organize spatial relationships. Some architects create new engineering solutions. Some invent details to solve problems generated by a changing environment or society. Whatever the problem, whatever the solution, it is these individuals that "move the ball down the field," guaranteeing that architecture remains a dynamic and important part of culture and history.

Composition is the only purely visual criteria for design of the highest quality. In order for it to be achieved, the architect must have education, training, and experience in two- and three dimensional studio art. The composition of the architecture has nothing to do with "curb appeal," as it involves a much more serious analysis of form, proportion, and balance, whereas mere curb appeal can be achieved with popular stylistic themed vocabulary. Two-dimensional composition requires analysis and organization between the elements of the floor plan, the section, and the elevations of the building. Its process is akin to solving a puzzle. Three-dimensional composition is more intuitive, as there are fewer "process of elimination" steps by which a successful three-dimensional composition is created. Additionally, three-dimensional composition is perhaps more subjective than its two-dimensional counterpart.

In order for an architect, who possesses all of the aforementioned skills, to also instill in the building a sense that it belongs to its owners and/or users, a final professional character trait must exist. That trait is humility. The architects of Designs of the Highest Quality take their work very seriously, but do not view themselves in kind. In the final analysis, they know that they provide a service, and the true owners of the architecture are others. Sometimes it is a mere individual. Sometimes it is a family. Many buildings are for the employees who will spend their careers inhabiting the structure. Maybe it is for art patrons, or school children, or worshipers or politicians. The ability to flesh out the symbols of meaning for these end groups and users, and to make concrete and integrate these symbols into the building, is the final evidence that the edifice has gone from a mere structure to a work of architecture of the highest quality, and has become a building of note.

Find more articles on residential and commercial design by Tobias Architecture at our blog: Malibu Architecture + Design

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Dryer Vents That Last - Stop Replacing Dryer Vents Every Year

There are many types of dryer vents available today. Most cost under $10 and are made out of aluminum or plastic. There are inherent problems with these vents though. Aluminum vents and plastic vents deteriorate pretty quickly in weather and sun. Many people call us and ask what dryer exhaust vents will last longer than a year or two. Unfortunately there are no cheap dryer vents that will last in the beating sun or wet climates. However there are alternatives.

One alternative is copper. Copper is a great material for vent products. Copper does not rust, it patinas, or oxidizes over time. Copper turns from its shiny natural state to a dull reddish brown for about two years. Then as rain and sun hit the metal it starts to patina turning a darker color, then getting stripes of green. 16 ounce copper vents can last up to 30 years, that is 30 times longer than their cheaper counterparts. There is also very little maintenance you need to do on a copper vent. However dryer vents need to be cleaned about every six months. Here is a great article on how to clean your dryer vent.

Another alternative dryer vent other than copper is steel. There are a variety of steel dryer vents that range in price from $15 and up. Of the steel variants stainless steel is the most resilient. Galvanized and bonderized steel vents are best for projects where the vent has to be painted to match siding color. However, stainless steel is the most resilient to rust and weather. Stainless steel vents can come in different grades of stainless steel. Industry standard for construction is 304 grade stainless steel. We have found that this low grade of stainless steel is still prone to rusting. Vents made out of 316, marine grade stainless steel, are much better at resisting rust and weather.

There are many styles of dryer vents, and a few different ways a dryer can be venting to the outside. The three main ways a dryer can be vented to the outside are through a wall, a roof, or a soffit. Venting a dryer through a wall or a roof is usually compliant with code. However in some cities venting a dryer through a soffit is against code. In all instances there are usually a few different styles you can use to get your dryer exhaust to the outside.

CopperLab has some great copper and stainless steel dryer vents for sale.

DrainsUSA also has a great selection of dryer exhaust vents

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Ensuring Your Business Doesn't Fall Victim to Sudden Data Loss

Common Causes of Data Loss:

With the increased use of computers in small business today comes the progressively enhanced risk of losing vast amounts of invaluable data in the blink of an eye. Often the data that a computer holds carries far more value than the computer itself. Hardware can be insured but the data within cannot. There are various causes for the spontaneous loss of data.

Power Surges:

A power surge is a sudden spike in voltage which subsequently produces an abrupt increase in current. Often these will occur with no consequences. This amplified current, however, can without warning occasionally damage vulnerable electronic devices such as computer hardware.

Power Outages:

A Power outage is the temporary loss of electrical power to any given area. This sudden loss of power can mean hours of unsaved work is permanently erased. Saving your work often can minimize the effects of a power outage but occasionally the sudden removal of power to the computer can in some cases destroy sensitive computer hardware or corrupt specific files.

Hard Disk Failure:

As with everything hard disks cannot last forever and will fail given enough time. It is worth doing some research into the hard disk that you choose for your next computer before making a purchase as some are known to last longer than others. But even the best and most costly will in some unlucky circumstances fail prematurely. Hard disk failure is a nasty event that almost always means the loss of the entire disk's contents. It is therefore worth considering some of the options to prevent the data from being permanently lost.

Prevention is the Key:

In some cases files can be recovered after serious data loss but this is often an expensive and painstaking process. Before spending money every small business has to weigh up the cost versus potential gain from any purchase and although losing a piece of computer hardware to any of the following causes might be insignificant, the loss of its contents could potentially have dramatic effects. Prevention is the key.

Surge Protectors:

The most cost effective method of protecting your computer against sudden surges in power such as those from lightning strikes, short of unplugging them from the power point, is to have them powered through a surge protected power board. These are fairly cheap considering their effectiveness and will almost always make all the difference.

Uninterrupted Power Supplies:

Uninterrupted power supplies (UPS) act as surge protectors 'on steroids'. These are slightly more expensive than a surge protector but have the added bonus of powering your computer during a power outage. They often don't have enough battery life to finish the day on. However the 15 or 20 minutes of extra electricity that they do provide is often long enough to finish the task that you are working on, save the document and safely shut the computer down until power is restored. The UPS that I use has paid for itself many times over.

Redundant Array of Independent Disks:

There are various configurations of redundant array of independent disks (RAID). Essentially they are a set of two or more hard disks working together to either increase speed and efficiency or hard disk failure tolerance. When the hard disks are set up in RAID to prevent data loss through hard disk failure the same information is written to two or more disks simultaneously. This allows for one disk to fail as the other will still have the data stored on it and be accessible. This increase in reliability comes at a slight cost in speed and efficiency.

Online Backup:

A UPS powered through a surge protector will prevent loss of data during power outages and electrical surges and RAID can reduce the chance of data loss through hard disk failure but in the case water damage, theft, fire or meteor shower remote backup services are really the only saviour. There are various online backup services available at slightly different costs, each coming with its own advantages and disadvantages. Doing a bit of research before spending money is always wise but any of these will allow you to recover your lost data after a devastating event.

A combination of all of the above methods of prevention of data loss will save your small business a lot of heartache. Do yourself and your clients a favour and spend the few hundred dollars necessary to protect your invaluable data from being lost forever.

Visit architectural rendering Perth for more information about the author Daniel Nitsche, Creative Director of Shadow Gap Architectural Visualisation.

With the increased use of computers in small business today comes the progressively enhanced risk of losing vast amounts of invaluable data in the blink of an eye. Often the data that a computer holds carries far more value than the computer itself. Hardware can be insured but the data within cannot.

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Executive Suites Bring Flexibility to Your Office Floor Plan

Settling on a new commercial space for lease is a daunting process. After you and your moving team have finalized a space and design strategy for your business and conducted a lengthy search for the best space, there is still a long haggling process between lawyers as the final price is hashed out. Then, once that is said and done, your business is now chained to a space for five or ten years. Who knows to what extent the economy, real estate market, or your own business could change during that time? Consider where your business is now and the growth expected over the next few years. Is such a lengthy commitment best for the company? Where can your business turn for more and better options?

Executive suites allow companies expand into pre-designed spaces that meet their needs. An executive suite rental is a short-term, pay-as-you-go system that offers furnished offices, meeting rooms, and work spaces for growing businesses. This is especially a great option for new businesses that are just starting out because all services are provided for you at a flat rate. Instead of pouring a large amount of money and time into a commercial lease, office design strategies, and bid haggling on movers and IT staff, a business can simply rent an executive suite at a fixed price and actually focus on what's important-running the business. Then, when your company does have increased success and needs to expand, it is easy to end the current rental agreement and move into a larger executive suite that better fits your new needs.

And don't think just because you've turned over the office design reins to a commercial property owner that you won't have a choice when it comes to aesthetics. Many property owners that rent executive suites have a number of locations in a single area, allowing for plenty of choices when it comes to office design. You may even be able to arrange for some modern updates to the space before moving in, if you don't mind paying a bit extra to give the space a personal touch.

The main benefit of this flexible system is that it matches the changing nature of the economy, giving your business the flexibility to react accordingly should a sudden shift occur. For example, will real estate prices rise or fall this month? With the executive suite rental system, if your business finds a better deal, it can easily leave the current space and actually take advantage of a great opportunity.

There are a number of other options for short-term commercial rentals, from virtual offices to hourly-rented meeting spaces, and more. These many options, offered by a number of commercial property owners, are meant to give your business the flexibility it would not otherwise have. With that added flexibility, your business can cope with any surprises that come its way at a price that won't break the bank.
Isn't it nice for once to have some stability in your office relocation? has even more helpful information on executive suites and more.

Plus, we have a limited time special executive suites offer: 2 months of office space for free!

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Exclusions in Architectural CAD Drafting Services

Architectural CAD drafting services are the output of an independent unit that drafts Architectural drawings as a specialized service. Segregating Architectural CAD drafting services came from the need for focus.

Measurements An Architectural CAD drafting services firm would not assume a dimension which is either missing or not clear. Such dimensions are not interpreted, assumed or measured unless specifically asked. Here are some reasons:

A wrong dimension can have a huge impact on the design intent whether it be the slope of a floor, the size of a room or the aesthetics of the building Will cause a lot of rework when discovered at a late stage and take the project months behind An error in the architectural drawing has a cascading effect on all related service drawings Measurement needs a different skill set, normally employed by a focused drafting serviceThe best 2 rules to follow when a dimension is not clear are: Do not assume When in doubt, leave it out, and askDesigning The raison d'ĂȘtre of an drafting service is to leave the designers freedom to design and create. So, accepting designing pretty much defeats the intent of hiring a focused drafting service. At the same time, at every stage of the project there is design. Every drawing made opens a new line of vision, every sectioned detailed out is food for thought and fodder for the designer. In this background, when the client and the drafting service have reached a level of comfort, Design interpretation, does get done, though subject to the designer's final approval.Direct interaction with external parties Direct dealing by the architectural CAD service with the client, service consultants, manufacturers or end users is not recommended. Let's see whyIn design, it is critical that there must be a Single Point of Communication (SPOC) for all decisions. Ultimately, despite the plethora of inputs from multi sources, there is one brain processing that information and delivering the design There are some experts who believe that the SPOC system creates a bottleneck in process flow. While the debate continues, one of the outcomes of crossed communications could be lack of accountability and direction. Data collection During CAD documentation, at times data might be needed from the Internet or Reference books, like standards or codes. These are also excluded from the scope of architectural CAD services becauseInternet data cannot be trusted Interpretation and application of data varies Standards and codes applied to a project must be current. Every website does not necessarily have the latest update all the time

Conclusively it is important to mention that these are services normally excluded from the scope of drafting service. This article does not deem to restrict or dictate these exclusions in the reader's agreements with architectural CAD service firms. In fact, questioning a norm is the starting point of change.

The AEC Associates are, as the name suggests, your partners in ever dynamic and invigorating AEC domain; your service providers for all disciplines of the architecture, engineering and construction industry. We will assist you in all your drawing, drafting, documentation, CAD/BIM and value added services. A well-knit consortium of professionals, our combined experiences spans across continents, millions of square feet in construction spread through a wide gamut of executed projects. Our Vertical focus includes: Architectural, Structural and MEP.

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