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Monthly Archives: October 2015

A roof and chimney

Is Your Home Weatherproofed?

By | DIY, Energy Efficiency, Home Inspection, Professional Tips, Seasonal, Winter | No Comments

They say that you take on another full-time job when you become a homeowner. Anyone that has had to do a bit of routine maintenance around the home understands this to be true.

Thankfully, some projects are easier to pull off than others. As long as you make sure that your home is as best protected from inclement weather as humanly possible, you shouldn’t have too many major projects to have to tackle later down the line.

Keeping rain, snow, and ice out of your home is going to be an ongoing battle between you and Mother Nature, but it’s one that you absolutely have to win all the time – 100% of the time – or you’re going to be looking at some seriously sticky situations.

Make sure that your roof is in tip-top shape

Verifying that your home is as weatherproofed as it gets starts with making sure that your roof is in the best possible shape it can be in.

After all, your roof is going to be the very first line of defense between you and inclement weather. It’s going to do the bulk of the heavy lifting to make sure that you stay high and dry every day of the year for at least a decade to come.

If climbing up a ladder and poking around on your roof is not your idea of a good time, Lucas Contracting is here to help. Our Ottawa roofers have the qualifications and experience to ensure your roof is in excellent shape. Preventative measures and small fixes over time will ensure you don’t have to do a complete roof overhaul ahead of schedule.

Check for any exterior damage

You also need to do a visual check of all exterior components of your home (especially your siding) to make sure that it is in tip-top shape as well.

Vinyl siding is very inexpensive and looks fantastic when installed properly, but it’s not exactly the stoutest stuff around. It chips easily when the temperature gets cold, and it gets more than a little bit “loosey-goosey” when the temperature starts to climb.

You need to be 100% certain that it’s going to continue to protect you from outside elements without allowing any weather to get into your home. Any signs of obvious damage or neglect need to be addressed ASAP.

Replace old windows and doors

Finally, you’ll want to think about swapping out all of your old windows and doors to replace them with more efficient and modern options.

This is especially true if your home is more than thirty years old and hasn’t seen any updates. The technology behind new windows and doors has come quite a way in just the last three decades. With an upgrade, you’ll be able to better protect your home from inclement weather, but you’ll also be able to dramatically reduce your energy bill while improving your overall safety to boot. This is definitely the kind of upgrade that your home deserves.

Call Lucas Contracting today for more recommendations on weatherproofing your home for whatever wild weather Ottawa has in store this year.

A gutter filled with leaves and a softball

Why It’s Important to Maintain Your Gutters & Downspouts in the Fall

By | DIY, Roofing, Seasonal | No Comments

You can’t wait to clean your gutters when you notice a problem, but by then it’s too late.

Unfortunately, that’s exactly what too many otherwise smart and savvy homeowners out there end up doing. They then end up spending a lot more on home repairs than they anticipated. If all you do this year is clean out your gutters and your downspouts before the fall, you will usually be able to save yourself a tremendous amount of headache and hassle (at the very least). You’ll also save yourself a good chunk of change in repair expenses, as well.

Here are just a couple of reasons that you will want to maintain your gutters and your downspouts before the chilly and snowy winter season comes to Ottawa.

It’s called “fall” for a reason!

Sure, you’ll always come across people that refer to this season as autumn, but all over the country people call this season fall. It’s easy to see why when you begin to notice all of the leaves that come tumbling down as the weather cools.

Well, when those leaves come drifting down, the odds are pretty good that they are going to fall right down your roof and start to collect in your gutters. This isn’t going to be a huge problem at first, but if they are allowed to stick around for any real amount of time, they are going to begin to decompose. That’s when your entire gutter system runs the risk of getting clogged.

Clogged gutters and downspouts will cause water backups, and water backups have a nasty little habit of worming their way into your home one way or another. And we all know just how dangerous water damage can be. Even if it starts off pretty small, it can quickly spiral out of control if not addressed.

Clogged gutters will ruin your natural drainage system

Gutters serve more purposes than simply making sure that water is kept entirely out of your home.

Gutter and downspout systems are also designed to work with the way that your home is situated on the land. They allow you to effortlessly drain excess rainwater away from your home so that your basement doesn’t end up turning into a swimming pool you never intended to have in the first place.

Downspouts that get rerouted because of clogged gutters are going to cause a nightmare situation almost immediately (and certainly in the spring when the snow begins to melt). Unless you are excited to run a sump pump all year round you’re going to want to make sure that you take the time to clean things out properly.

In addition to cleaning out your gutters, schedule a visit from the Ottawa roofing experts at Lucas Contracting to make sure your gutters and downspouts are in proper working order.

Open concept living room and kitchen

5 Signs An Open Concept Renovation Is Right For You

By | Design Inspiration, Fashion, Food for thought, Kitchens | No Comments

The overwhelming majority of homeowners that purchase pre-existing homes want to do one thing and one thing only the second that they get their hands on the keys. They can’t wait to rip out as many of the interior walls as humanly possible and create a real open concept floor plan ASAP – and it’s easy to see why.

Anyone that has spent any amount of time in homes that were built before the 1980s and 1990s are going to find that they are a little bit tight and some would even say cramped. There are walls everywhere cutting up the space. While that may have been all the rage in the past (we’re looking at you, Craftsman-style bungalows and single-floor ranches), nothing could be further from the truth today.

Open concept floor plans are definitely in vogue today, and here are five signs that you might need to pull off an open concept renovation the first chance that you get.

Open concept renovations open up the view

While you’ll certainly want to make sure that each space in your home is clearly delineated from the rest, and that you have privacy wherever you need it, most people don’t want a bunch of walls breaking up their view of the rest of the property.

Open concept renovations remove a significant chunk of those interior walls, and in turn open up the view.

One large living space provides breathing room

If there are too many walls in a smaller home, you’re definitely going to feel it. When you knock those walls down and really open things up with a new renovation, you’re going to be able to breathe easier. The entire space will just feel larger.

Open concept floorplans are perfect for those that like to entertain

Those that love to entertain are definitely going to want to think about opening up their floor plan as much as humanly possible. There is nothing worse than feeling like you’re stuck in the kitchen always from all the action because there are a bunch of walls between you and your guests.

Knocking out your walls will help you better monitor your children and pets

Multitasking is such an important skill in our modern world and you’re going to have to become a master of it when you need to get things done while watching your children and your pets. Take down as many walls as you can that are between you and where your kids are going to be most of the time, and you’ll be able to get work done without them ever leaving your sight.

The right open concept floor plan showcases your feature highlights

Whether you want to make sure that your kitchen really sings or that people are drawn into your living room, an open floor plan can really help to funnel the action into those specific spaces and frame them in a very positive light.

Remember, a proper open concept renovation is about a lot more than knocking down walls and calling it a day. You need to make sure everything is done properly and the structural integrity of your home is not compromised. Contact Lucas Contracting to bring your open concept vision to fruition.

A row of houses with pristine rooves

3 Tips to Make Your Roof Last

By | Energy Efficiency, Renovations, Roof Inspection, Roofing | No Comments

It is of the utmost importance that you make sure your roof is in the best possible condition. If not, you run the risk of having to do a complete tear off and replacement. This kind of intensive project can cost you countless thousands that you could have spent elsewhere.

Thankfully, it isn’t all that difficult to maintain your roof (the roof you have right now) to help stretch its longevity a bit. This is especially true when you know exactly what you’re doing or hire a trusted Ottawa roofing company like Lucas Contracting. We are going to give you three different tips to make your roof last and last. These tips are going to save you a boatload of money (not to mention time, headache, and hassle) just by putting them into action.

Shall we jump right in?

Clean up your gutters every four months or so

One of the easiest things that you’ll be able to do dramatically extend the longevity of your roof is to simply clean out your gutters on a routine basis. Swabbing out your gutters every four months or so means that you’ll have to give up three weekends a year to really get the job done right. But you’ll be able to save thousands and thousands of dollars on costly roof repairs. It’s definitely worth it. If you’d rather spend your weekend lounging, an Ottawa roofing company like Lucas Contracting can handle the task with ease.

Remove debris from your shingles

No matter where your home is situated, the odds are pretty good that you’re going to have at least some debris collect upon your roof every year. Leaves, animal drops, dust, and random neighbourhood debris collects on your roof.

While a bit of debris isn’t going to be a nightmare situation, if you allow the debris to continue to collect things can really start to spiral out of control. Make sure that you’re power washing off the debris on your roof every year (hopefully right after spring), and your roof will last at least a couple of years longer than it would have otherwise.

Get rid of any growth

Finally, it’s important that you make sure there is no living organic material on your roof that could cause it to weaken structurally or as far as weatherproofing is concerned.

Moss growing on your roof might not seem like all that big of a deal at first, but if it continues to grow, it’s going to work to destroy your roof from the outside in, causing leaks and structural problems all over the place.

These three tips and the help of your Ottawa roofing company will ensure that your roof lasts for years – even decades – to come.