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Protect your Pets, Pipes & Plants from extreme cold

by VanBeck Home Management Inc. on 01/21/13

With severe cold coming to the Tri-State, it is important to protect your PETS, PIPES & PLANTS!

PROTECT YOUR PETS:

Housing: Provide proper shelter for your pet whether they live indoors or outdoors. Indoor pets should have their bed or crate placed in a safe and warm place that is away from drafts. Outdoor pets should have a well insulated house that is wind and waterproof resistant and elevated off the ground so wind and moisture can’t seep inside. Install a door flap to protect against drafts and gusts of wind. Extra blankets and straw will also help to increase your pet’s warmth. Room and floor heaters should be kept away from your pet as they are an obvious fire hazard and can cause serious injuries as well.

Food & Water: Make sure to provide fresh, clean, unfrozen water for your pet every day. Outdoor pets need to consume 25 to 50 percent more calories than usual because the cold weather tends to deplete their energy. Make sure to talk to your veterinarian to make sure what is right for your pet.

Cats and Cars: Keep your cats indoors during the winter. Not only can outdoor cats freeze, they sometimes sleep under the hoods of cars to stay warm. When the motor is started, the cat can be injured or killed by the fan belt. Give an outdoor cat a chance to escape by banging loudly on the car hood before starting your car.
Warmth: If you have a short-haired breed of dog, consider getting him / her a sweater with a high collar or turtleneck with coverage from the base of the tail to the belly to keep them warm. Never shave your dog down to the skin in the winter months as a longer coat will provide more warmth.

Antifreeze: Dogs and cats are attracted to the sweet smell and taste of antifreeze which contains ethylene glycol. A tiny lick can kill your dog or cat so make sure to check your car for leaks on your driveway or gutter. Keep containers tightly closed and clean up spills immediately. Check your local retailer for "pet safe" antifreeze.

PROTECT YOUR PIPES:

Wrap exposed faucets and pipes, including those outside the house or in unheated crawl spaces, attics, garages and other areas. If you don't have the foam pipe coverings, a towel or rag and duct tape will do the trick.
Let your indoor faucets drip.
Open cabinets below sinks to allow the heat to circulate around the water pipes.

Drain and store water hoses indoors.
Protect outdoor electrical pumps.

Make sure you know where your home’s shut-off valve is and how to turn it on and off.

If Your Pipes Freeze
If a pipe bursts and floods your home, turn the water off at the shut-off valve. Call a plumber for help if you can’t find the broken pipe or if it’s inaccessible. Don’t turn the water back on until the pipe has been repaired.

PROTECT YOUR PLANTS:

Bring potted plants inside or store in garage near interior wall to provide extra warmth and protection from wind.
For cold-sensitive outdoor plants, put down extra mulch and consider covering with a cloth fabric of some kind to shield the plants from wind and frost. Don't use plastic because when the sun comes out, it could "bake" your plants.

Why choose professional cleaning services with VanBeck Home Management?

by VanBeck Home Management Inc. on 01/12/13

Its always a challenge to find a good housekeeper but using a professional cleaning service has some distinct advantages.  When you are looking for housecleaning in Evansville and the surrounding area, VanBeck Home Management Inc. can provide peace of mind.  All our cleaning team members are professional, uniformed, background checked and insured.  From our initial consultation and estimate, through continual quality assessment, VanBeck Home Management ensures that you receive the best residential cleaning service possible.  If you ever have a special request or concern, just let our office know, eliminating uncomfortable conversations.  Our goal is to meet and exceed your expectations each and every time.  From routine housecleaning to deep cleaning, specialty cleaning, high cleaning or window washing, VanBeck Home Management is there for you.

It's our Birthday!!!

by VanBeck Home Management Inc. on 01/09/13

VanBeck Home Management Inc. turns One Year old today.  It has been an incredible year filled with joys and challenges but throughout this year the one constant has been the support and encouragement we have been shown by our family, friends, mentors, team members, vendors, suppliers and most importantly our members and customers.  We thank you all and look forward to an amazing year two!


Fireplace Safety

by VanBeck Home Management Inc. on 01/08/13

Winter is in full swing and many of us are gathering around the fireplace with family and friends. Do not forget that fire safety is paramount. Here are a few tips that we all need to know as we fire up the fireplace... 

The U.S. Fire Administration (USFA) encourages you to practice the following fire safety steps to keep those home fires safely burning. Remember, fire safety is your personal responsibility ...Fire Stops With You!

Keep Fireplaces and Wood Stoves Clean

Have your chimney or wood stove inspected and cleaned annually by a certified chimney specialist.
Clear the area around the hearth of debris, decorations and flammable materials.
Leave glass doors open while burning a fire. Leaving the doors open ensures that the fire receives enough air to ensure complete combustion and keeps creosote from building up in the chimney.
Close glass doors when the fire is out to keep air from the chimney opening from getting into the room. Most glass fireplace doors have a metal mesh screen which should be closed when the glass doors are open. This mesh screen helps keep embers from getting out of the fireplace area.
Always use a metal mesh screen with fireplaces that do not have a glass fireplace door.
Install stovepipe thermometers to help monitor flue temperatures.
Keep air inlets on wood stoves open, and never restrict air supply to fireplaces. Otherwise you may cause creosote buildup that could lead to a chimney fire.
Use fire-resistant materials on walls around wood stoves.
Safely Burn Fuels

Never use flammable liquids to start a fire.
Use only seasoned hardwood. Soft, moist wood accelerates creosote buildup. In pellet stoves, burn only dry, seasoned wood pellets.
Build small fires that burn completely and produce less smoke.
Never burn cardboard boxes, trash or debris in your fireplace or wood stove.
When building a fire, place logs at the rear of the fireplace on an adequate supporting grate.
Never leave a fire in the fireplace unattended. Extinguish the fire before going to bed or leaving the house.
Allow ashes to cool before disposing of them. Place ashes in a tightly covered metal container and keep the ash container at least 10 feet away from your home and any other nearby buildings. Never empty the ash directly into a trash can. Douse and saturate the ashes with water.
Protect the Outside of Your Home

Stack firewood outdoors at least 30 feet away from your home.
Keep the roof clear of leaves, pine needles and other debris.
Cover the chimney with a mesh screen spark arrester.
Remove branches hanging above the chimney, flues or vents.
Protect the Inside of Your Home

Install smoke alarms on every level of your home and inside and outside of sleeping areas. Test them monthly and change the batteries at least once a year. Consider installing the new long life smoke alarms.
Provide proper venting systems for all heating equipment.
Extend all vent pipes at least three feet above the roof

It's why we do what we do!

by VanBeck Home Management Inc. on 08/31/12

Many of our customers have told us that we are the reason they can stay in their homes.  It's why we do what we do!