Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Generator Season is Approaching. Are You Prepared?

People spend an inordinate amount of time talking about the weather.  How good it is.  How bad it is. What it will be this afternoon, tomorrow, over the weekend.  I am pretty sure the advent of the Weather Channel and multiple weather-themed reality t.v. shows have helped turn a topic of general interest into a national obsession.  After our area was decimated by Hurricane Sandy, how could weather help but become a local obsession as well?  I know that I am paying attention to the weather reports now when before I never used to care what the weather forecast was.

Since the calendar has turned over again into hurricane season, it seems like a good idea to talk a little about generators.  Last year during Sandy, and the year before during Hurricane Irene we suffered a major power outage here on Long Island.  So what did Bob do?  When the power went out Bob enthusiastically reached for his box of camping gear. Out came the flashlights, the lanterns and the candles. Bob looks at a power outage as a way to forcibly separate our kids rom their cell phones and computers and maybe get them to play a board game with him.  I look at it as a huge inconvenience because if it goes on too long it means all the food in my fridge and freezer is going to need to be cleaned out and who looks forward to that? 

What is your next move after grabbing the candles?  Naturally you look our your front door to see if your neighbors have power. When I opened my front door after the wind died down what did I notice?  The sound of a generator humming.  Not my generator, but one around the block.  After all, who would expect a contractor to have a generator?  The funny part is that I started whining about getting a generator right after Irene and I kept it up for a year and guess what?  Going into Sandy I still had no generator. Of course, after Sandy hit, we couldn't get our hands on a generator no matter how much we were willing to pay for it. This fall I am prepared.  I finally got Bob to buy a generator,- against his will.  I am willing to bet that even if we have a power outage this fall he won't want to hook it up.  I will probably have to pay someone else to hook it up for me, lol.  If you want to play it safe and go out an buy a generator, here are a few things to keep in mind.

The purpose of a generator is to provide electricity to your home during a power failure.  Generators can be fueled by gasoline, diesel fuel, propane or natural gas.  The first thing you need to figure out is whether your particular situation requires a portable generator or a stationary/stand-by generator.  Portable generators are smaller and cheaper and you can keep them in your garage to haul out when necessary.  You can get a decent portable that runs on gas for around $500.00. The downside to the portable is that you have to refill the tank frequently because it has a relatively short run time of about 12 hours.  This can be a problem if the outage lasts a while or if the gas pumps are down due to lack of electricity.  And really, it's not the best idea to store a large quantity of gasoline in your garage.  Some of the portables can run on a tank of propane like you use for the bbq grill but run time is still a factor.  Be mindful of house close the equipment is to your house because you don't want to
risk carbon monoxide coming inside.

If you are concerned about being without power for a longer period of time, you want to run your central air, or someone in your family suffers from a medical condition and needs to run equipment to live, you probably need to consider a stand-by generator.  This type of generator can also run on a variety of fuels.  In our area, you can hook it up to the gas line the same as you do your grill.  This type of generator can also be equipped with an automatic switch that senses the power failure and turns on the generator.  This is  a convenient feature because you don't have to be home to turn it on and it will turn off automatically when the power is restored.  The downside here is that the sophistication of this equipment is reflected in its price.  If you are interested in more detailed information about what size generator will fit your particular needs, check out the Generating Size Calculator at http://www.generac.com/Residential/Sizer/.  Here's hoping none of us need one this fall.

Monday, May 6, 2013

An Award-Winning Remodeling Project Isn't Just About the Pictures

Don't get me wrong - a great picture is important.  Even in this D.I.Y. world of ours there are some jobs better left to the professionals.  We do professional work, why wouldn't I want the right lighting, the staging and the skilled eye of an accomplished photographer behind the lens?  We always use Joan Wozniak of Photographic Links for our photos and she gets us great shots every time. But there are other important aspects to a presenting a winner.

One thing that stands out in a competition is providing solutions to clients' problems. In our most recent win, the client wanted beautiful bathroom molding that would remain crisp and white over time. Low maintenance was also a consideration.  The perfect solution was to use Azek trim which is typically found in exterior renovations. Azek doesn’t require painting and since it is exterior grade, it is made to withstand wet situations. Problem solved. Since the client rose very early in the a.m. and didn't want to awaken the rest of the family, a higher than usual level of sound-proofing was also required on this job. The use of sound- deadening board in the interior walls rather than simple insulation did the trick. Simply repurposing material helped us pull ahead of the competition.

Of course it also helps to have great clients who are willing to go with some out of the box thinking. Our clients are really our inspiration and what makes the jobs fun.  Sometimes I think we spend as much time creating relationships as creating beautiful homes.






Friday, May 3, 2013

Company Background

Bob Krendel started out in the remodeling business in 1982 while in college. Bob had always enjoyed working with his hands and it seemed like a great way to earn a living while doing something he loved, learn more!

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Serving Nassau County for Over 30 Years

Your home is both an asset and a haven. At R.A. Krendel Contracting, we understand this and are committed to a completed remodeling project that exceeds your expectations, adds value to your home and provides you with years of enjoyment.