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Archive for September 2010

A reader of The Annapolis Capital wrote, "I have a situation that my husband and I cannot for the life of us figure out. We recently noticed a couple of what looks like water stains on our living room ceiling. There are a couple of straight ones, one about one to two feet long and one shorter one. There are also stains around where the ceiling fan is installed to the ceiling. What puzzles us is that there is a bedroom above the living room. It is unoccupied, we just use it for an extra clothes closet. There is nothing on the floor up there such as water spills or an animal accident. We have an elderly cat and we frequently sit for the neighbors dog. It is carpeted in that room and there is nothing obvious to us like a spill of any kind. Certainly no leakage from the roof. Other facts about the house: It was built in 1984 and there is a dormer in that second floor room along with a small "under the roof" storage area. We do have a fireplace insert on the main floor in the living room that we use all winter long to heat the house. What should we be looking at and how can we figure out what this is and how to repair it?" More

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Barbara Christensen, manager of EN-R-GY Saver Inc. in Holliston, Mass., makes a four-point case for installing a fireplace or wood- or pellet-burning stoves to reduce heating bills. "Burning wood or pellets saves money. It uses a locally grown renewable resource that's better for the environment and it reduces our dependence on foreign oil," she said. More

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Fall is the perfect time to start prepping your fireplace for winter. Whether it's wood-burning, gas or electric, here are cleaning tips to get your fireplace in tip-top shape before frosty temperatures hit. Given what happened last winter on the East Coast, despite a milder winter prediction, we should all be prepared for the season's worst. Part of this preparation includes inspecting and cleaning the accumulation of soot, ashes and debris from your wood-burning, gas or electric fireplace. Doing this will assure safe and efficient heating of your home come winter. More

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Not all Americans packed away the barbecue grill after the end-of-summer Labor Day celebration. Outdoor grilling is at an all-time high, nearly double what it was 20 years ago, according to the market research firm NPD Group's 22nd annual Eating Patterns in America report. Some 38.2 percent of households reported eating at least one grilled food over a two-week period, year-round. Some 39.9 said they did the same, September through November, while 26.5 percent continued doing so December through February. More

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One of the less glamorous activities that need doing if you're going to use a wood burning stove over the winter is chopping kindling; and the thing about kindling is you always need way more than you think when you get started. So, the first good tip about chopping kindling is, when you think you have enough, you're probably only about half way there, so chop some more, and keep it up until you have twice as much as you do now. More

With fall around the corner, unemployment rates up, and environmental alternatives more relevant than ever, many Americans are considering installing wood stoves or fireplace inserts to help keep their homes warm this winter and reduce heating bills. But is wood burning really a green thing to do? And will it actually save money? We explore your burning questions. More

Nothing adds ambience to a room like the glow from a fireplace. Whether modern gas-fired or traditional wood-burning, fireplaces have become all but a standard feature in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, homes. With the selection of efficient and space-saving designs available today, it is easy to see why fireplaces continue to grow in popularity. More

David Holloway wrote in The Press-Register, "Other regions in this great nation may celebrate the turning of the leaves in the fall or the first robin in the spring. But we here in the Deep South are content to derive our changing of the seasons from watching very large men chase a funny-shaped ball around for four hours on a Saturday. We do, indeed, take our football seriously. Likewise, we regard our tailgating with equal zest because food is a close second to football in the importance to our daily lives. Break out the lawn chairs, ice chests and all the necessary accoutrements, it's time to plan a party in the parking lot." More

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There are a large number of fireplace accessories that can enhance the feel of your home. If you're really interested in creating a specific mood in a bedroom or living room with a fireplace, then you need to think carefully about what you choose. From fireplace screens to andirons, everything affects how people view the space. Setting the theme for a room will determine everything that goes into it. Whether you are looking at a more rustic setting or one that is delicate and French. The choice is yours and there are fireplace supplies for every taste. More

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