The Typical Queenslander Style Home

When you think of a typical Queenslander, apart from the massive stilts and open-plan design, one of the most recognisable qualities is the corrugated iron roof.

Since the 1840s when Australia was first developing, corrugated iron has been considered one of the best materials to use for roofing. Because of it’s lightweight, sturdy properties, it is the ideal material to use in terms of easy transportation and construction as well as protection.

Although it is a relatively strong, fire proof and weather-resistant material, if exposed to water (particularly salt) rusting is inevitable. This is why it is extremely important to coat the steel in a layer of paint in order for it to remain protected.

Even today this roofing remains to be one of the most popular choices in materials for a range of reasons. Its flexibility, strength and thin sizing allows for quick repairs, relatively cheap installation and durability with little maintenance.

Apart from the practical side of things, there is also the aesthetics. The typically 3 inch curves rolling into one another create a very symmetrical feel, breaking up the angles of the rest of the house and creating a harmonious contrast.

Since iron is quite a durable material itself, compared to wood it is very easy to prepare for installation. Instead of needing to purchase an expensive sealant, a few layers of paint will generally be enough to prevent any damage.

One aspect of corrugated iron that can pose a genuine issue is the fact that the wavelengths of most sounds are echoed loudly into the tube of the corrugated iron. This means that any noise close to or coming into contact with the roof is going to release a high pitched “ping”. This can be a genuine issue for Queenslanders as falling tree branches and wildlife are a part of our every day lives.

On the other hand, the echo can be the perfect culprit to amplify raindrops into a soothing lullaby and because of the shape of the typically 3 inch tubing and smoothness of the iron, the water runs straight down and off the roof, making cleaning very manageable. Also because it is a very thin material it allows the house to stay cool in the warm summers, making it the ideal choice for a house in Queensland. For roof restoration Brisbane, contact Retro Roof Restoration.

The iron sheets themselves are relatively cheap and can be purchased with a coat of Colorbond or made galvanised to order. They range from around 5 to 45 dollars per sheet depending on the size of the sheet and what coating you have selected.

Compared with other common roofing materials such as clay, slate, concrete, wood, Spanish and asphalt, corrugated iron is often said to be one of the most durable and certainly one of the most cost-effective.

So whether it’s the classic sound of rain on the tin roof, or the practical desires of someone looking for a sturdy home, or anyone who doesn’t want to waste their precious pennies, it is no surprise that corrugated iron is one of the most popular choices in Queensland.

Energy Bill Busting Tips

Are you dreading your next power bill? Starting to worry about how the increases in electricity costs are going to affect you. Well you’re not on your own, so here is what you can do to reduce your anxiety and your bills.

Most of the time simple and easy common sense measures can cut hundreds of dollars fromyour bills just by following these steps.

Top Ten Ways to Reduce Your Bills FOR FREE

1. Most people do not realise how much electricity a simple light bulb could be adding to the cost of their electricity bills. Turning off lights when you leave a room will make a significant difference.

2. Try to avoid using the clothes dryer, if the weather is bad purchase a clothes rank that you can use inside.

3. If going on holidays, turn off your electric hot water system at the meter box to avoid the system constantly heating up water when it’s not being used.

4. If you have a peak smart enabled air conditioner you can connect your air-conditioning unit to Tariff 33 – which provides a guaranteed 18 hours of electricity at tariff 33 rates. You may not be able to turn on the system on during peak times, but this could be a good compromise to still enjoy your heating/cooling system without costing the earth. Energex are currently offering $250 reward for split system (peak smart enabled) and $500 reward for ducted systems (peak smart enabled). To see whether your air conditioner is eligible go to the Energex website.

5. An old inefficient pool pump could be costing you up to $640 annually to run on tariff 11. By connect your pool pump to Tariff 33 (if possible) could save you hundreds off your bill. Energex are currently offering a $250 reward for connecting your pool pump to Tariff 33.

6. Turn off additional refrigerators. Have a good think about how much you really use the other fridge. If it’s only for the occasional party switch it off in-between time or if it is to store extra food think whether you really need to stock pile this much as you could be paying a fortune for “just in case you need it”.

7. When running your air conditioner set the temperature to 23 degrees in Summer, as every degree below this will cost you 10% more in running costs (eg. Running at 20 degrees will cost you 30% more than running it at 23 degrees) Or to save more open windows for ventilation rather than turning on the air conditioner in summer time.

8. Use cold water to wash your clothes. With the many washing detergents available today that are made for cold water washing it makes sense to use these rather using your electricity to heat up the water.

9. Once the weather starts to cool down, remember to close any windows that have been left open, use a throw blanket to snuggle up and keep warm whilst watching TV and get out the ugg boots. . If you do turn on the heater, keep the heat in the room you’re in by closing the door.

10. Using low flow showerheads in your shower usually consume less energy and provide the same amount of comfort.

All these free suggestions will reduce your energy usage and your power bills but they do take self discipline and children are often the worst offenders in leaving everything turned on. So if you don’t want to comprise on life style you can still reduce your bills by purchasing energy saving products such as a solar hot water system, solar power system, led lighting, skylights and monitoring systems. If you’d like to find out more visit www.anyenergy.com.au

Cladding Mackay – Consider Vinyl Cladding Over Painting

Over the past several decades, more and more people have become aware of the numerous benefits of modern vinyl cladding and started to use it instead of paint. Paint is a great choice if you plan on selling the house in the near future since it does not involve a major investment, but if you want to make your home more comfortable, then vinyl cladding is the best choice. The truth is that vinyl cladding does have a series of advantages that should be taken into account if you want to get the best quality for your money. Here you will find the most important benefits:

What Is Vinyl Cladding?
In order to fully understand its benefits, you must firstly know what vinyl cladding is. In a nutshell, this is a type of cladding made from PVC combined with several other substances that aim to increase durability. This material is fixed on the exterior of your home to improve its overall aspect and also for improving thermal performance. Paint, on the other hand, is used only for improving the aspect of your home and it does not improve the thermal performance of your house in any way.

This type of cladding is also very durable in the long run, unlike paint which peels off and loses its intensity thoughout the years. This is possible with the help of the acrylic components found in vinyl cladding, which help it stand the test of time – and weather! It does not rot or crust, and it can last for decades even in the harshest weather conditions.

One of the most important advantages of this type of cladding is that unlike paint, it is very easy to maintain in the long run, and it adds value to your home. Paint is difficult to maintain over the years as it can easily deteriorate, but fortunately this is not the case with this type of cladding: you can easily wash it with a sprayer and some mild detergent once in a while, and that is it! It is true that vinyl cladding does require an initial investment, but the quality and the comfort are certainly worth it. Besides, this will also lower your energy bills.

Vinyl cladding is undoubtedly one of the most affordable and versatile cladding options: you can easily adapt it in order to match the overall style of your home, no matter if you own a traditional or a modern house. All you need in order to make your home stylish and unique is some high-quality products and a little bit of creativity. Besides, it is so affordable that you can even clad your entire home with it without having to spend a little fortune!

Last but certainly not least, another great benefit of this type of cladding is that it comes with an important warranty that confirms the quality and the durability of the material. This warranty will give you the peace of mind you need: your investment is fully protected, should anything happen with the cladding.

In conclusion, these are the main advantages of vinyl cladding over painting. Painting may be cheaper, but it is less durable in the long run, it does involve some maintenance costs, it can easily peel off and it does not improve the thermal performance. On the other hand, vinyl cladding is extremely durable, affordable, easy to maintain, it adds extra style to your home and it improves thermal performance as well. For cladding Mackay contact Prestige Exteriors today. Make sure you check out the before and after photo gallery.

Ideas All Trades Fixing Brisbane’s Storm Damaged Homes and New Building Projects

Brisbane based and BSA licensed Ideas All Trades Pty Ltd  is stepping up their private building project. The family owned business is expanding rapidly to cater to the more diverse requirements of private construction in the Brisbane area.

Ideas All Trades Pty. Ltd. formerly Ideas Painting & Plastering are armed with 9 years of trades and trades management experience in the Brisbane region with a focus on building in the Logan area.

With well demonstrated success in the insurance repair sector, and a thirst for solid growth in work load capacity and service provision, Ideas All Trades Pty Ltd are branching out in pursuit of low rise building projects including renovation, repairs and extensions on homes, new homes and commercial buildings.

As Ideas Painting & Plastering, they assisted thousands of Brisbane residence affected by the major floods of Australia Day 2012. They continue to repair storm damaged and flood affected homes; homes broken into and homes burnt out by fire on behalf of several National insurers and other major National Builders.

The trust earned by thousands of Brisbane residence is clear. Just have a look at the myriad of video testimonials they accrued on their You Tube channel. The link here will take you to the company’s founding director Will Warrens’ YouTube channel which is packed with Brisbane homeowners all voicing their approval and thanks to the Ideas tradies and administration staff for their swift and quality service.

In fact, speed, quality and ensuring customers have as little disruption to their home life with as higher quality finish as possible, is a major part of the Ideas All Trades customer service policy. They are trying to bring positive attitudes to the fore about trades practices, quality, trust in trades and value in the building trades consumer market.

Their experience as a builder responsible for insurance claim funded repairs has heightened Ideas All Trades’ commitment to quality building. The demand of high standards in insurance repairs plus the need to adapt high turnovers of unique repair requirements has given Ideas All Trades a building advantage.

The advantage is the Ideas All Trades Pty Ltd model of job management. They have most skilled building trades people required for any home repair, renovation or house extension job on their books and maintain their relationship with Brisbane construction industry and custom manufacturing small businesses by regular contact and support.

They have also developed strong ties to local engineers and other building professionals offering the owner builder, and potential homeowner assured standards of structural safety. They offer experienced support to gaining council approval to building projects such as extensions and major renovations as well.

The benefits flow to the customer who no longer needs to worry about finding trusted tradesmen and engineers to complete each complicated task. Neither is there worry for the customer to organize the order and scheduling of each tradesman in turn.

For more information or to find out how you can get started on your building project visit the Ideas All Trades website and arrange a quote today.

Have Cane Will Travel – Disabled Travel in Australia

Award-winning comedy writer, Ian Heydon (Kingswood Country, How Green Was My Cactus, The Samuel Pepys Show, The Year My Country Broke) recently took out an unexpected award – for writing about travelling with a disability.

In 2010 Ian was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis. That led to the question – what does a writer who has a disability and who loves to travel write about? The answer was pretty obvious. Because Ian uses a cane for mobility assistance, he built a website called Cane & Able Travel and that site won the inaugural Business disAbility Award for Business Innovation in 2012.

Back in 2003, Ian had a travel book on Australia published called The Small Guide to A Big Country (Explore) and he subsequently bought a travel agent’s licence (Small Guide Travel). Much of Ian’s research for that book is still valid. As Ian says, “They haven’t moved the Sydney Opera House or most of Australia’s main attractions, so all I really needed to do was update where necessary and add the accessibility and disability facility information. It’s a bonus that the Small Guide Travel consultants can assist with itinerary advice and bookings.”

When Ian travels these days he uses both a cane and a wheelchair for getting around. “Before my diagnosis with MS I guess I felt a bit of pity when I saw other people in wheelchairs. I didn’t realise that wheelchairs give a person with a disability so much freedom. Mine allows me to get around much better at airports, especially when the boarding gate can be a fair distance from check-in, and it makes art galleries, museums and theatre so much more accessible and enjoyable.”

Ian first took his wheelchair on a trip to Dubai, London and Paris in 2012. While there are websites with attractions and disability information for those destinations in the pipeline, Ian’s first priority is writing about Australia. In late 2012 he visited Cairns and road-tested attractions like Skyrail and Quicksilver’s Great Barrier Reef as well as disabled-friendly accommodation. From this came the destination specific website, Cairns Disabled Travel.

The next cab of the rank was Canberra. According to Ian, Canberra is arguably Australia’s most rewarding destination for travellers with a disability. “There are flights from all other major cities and centres, they have an excellent public transport and wheelchair-assisted taxi system and all the major attractions are accessible, with many of them free. There’s excellent accommodation, terrific restaurants and bars and so much to see and do. It really is a fabulous tourist destination. Sure, after a couple of weeks there might be some thumb twiddling but for a few days away it is fabulous.” Ian visited Canberra in 2011 and 2013 to research accessible accommodation and attractions and the Canberra Disabled Travel website is now live.

Ian has a multi-destination itinerary on the drawing board for all Australian capital cities and major regional centres so you could see him soon in your part of the country. But the Kingswood? No, he won’t be taking the Kingswood!