How Do You Heat an Outdoor Patio in the Winter?

When you have a gorgeous patio, all you want to do is use it all year round. But during winter when it’s just too cold to stay outside, chances are you’ll spend more time indoors, leaving your patio unused for a while. 

But that won’t be the case if you have proper heating in your outdoor patio.

To heat your patio, put up a patio heater or heater lamps. You can put in a customized fireplace or even a fire pit. 

If you have a sufficient budget, you can also install a patio cover for added protection and insulation. On the other hand, if you have a deck, you can go for heated floors to keep you warm on your toes. 

Whichever direction you go, you can always benefit from a professional consultation here at TNT Home Improvements. 

But just to give you an idea of how these outdoor heating solutions pan out, keep reading as we look closer into the details. 

How Do I Make My Patio Warmer in the Winter? 

You get the most of your patio when you have a heater around. Whether it’s a heating lamp, furnace, or patio heater, the warm air becomes inviting for those who long to spend more time outdoors. 

Naturally, since sunlight is either limited or overshadowed by the cold, you will have to rely on the above-mentioned devices to keep your patio warmer. 

Likewise, you need to prepare your patio or deck for the winter season by having the right furniture and items that promote insulation.

If you’re planning for a patio or deck renovation, this would be the right time to add support structures that could invite more heat to the outdoor space. 

In the meantime, check out these heating solutions for your patio during winter. 

Put in a Fireplace or Fire Pit

If you want something traditional for heating your backyard space, go for a furnace or a fire pit. 

A furnace or fire pit is often seen indoors. But you can have one customized in your deck or patio. Outdoor furnaces are designed with resistance against wind and other elements that can interfere with fire.

An outdoor fireplace can burn wood or be run off of gas and come in a few different shapes and sizes including the fireplace, fire pit, fire table, fire column, fire bowl, and chiminea, just to name a few.

You can gather around the fire to keep you warm during those cold nights. 

Pros and Cons

Having either a fireplace or fire pit is a perfect conversation starter. Aside from getting more heat, you can gather around these structures and get even closer with friends and family. You can have smores and hot cocoa outside.

Also, with a fire pit, you can use it not just for warmth but for grilling barbeque as well. It can become a fun place to have treats like cooking smoors.

One downside of a firepit or a fireplace is that they may not provide enough heat for a larger group of people. 

Moreover, the heat will most likely be concentrated in a smaller area. So, you will have to get closer to keep yourself warm. 

Furthermore, an open fire can be hazardous without supervision. 

Add a Patio Heater

If you’ve been dining in outdoor restaurants or hanging out in an outdoor bar, you may notice these mushroom-type patio heaters in the vicinity. 

But patio heaters are not just for commercial use – at least not anymore. You can get one for your patio. 

It’s highly effective as a heating device, considering the heat travels evenly in the air. Plus, it’s perfect for keeping your patio warm during social gatherings or group hangouts. 

Pros and Cons

One clear advantage of a patio heater is convenience without sacrificing its effectiveness as a heating device. 

Whether you have a large-size free-standing patio heater or a wall-mounted one, you can easily place and operate the appliance without much assistance. In addition, their mechanism is pretty straightforward. 

For example, if you have a propane-fueled patio heater, you simply make sure that the tank is in place inside the base. Then simply turn on and ignite the heater, and it gives off heat within your patio area. 

It’s even more incredibly simple with electrical patio heaters since all you have to do is plug it into an outlet. 

On the other hand, patio heaters are sometimes regarded as unsustainable, considering the level of combustion involved in producing high BTUs of heat. 

When propane and natural gas patio heaters operate, they derive the energy to power the device by burning gas. Unfortunately, this process leaves carbon that can accumulate in the atmosphere. 

Also, it produces carbon monoxide that can be deadly when trapped in an enclosed area. This is why it’s recommended never to use a patio heater indoors.  

Nevertheless, if you regulate your use and follow exactly the manufacturer’s guide, you can still enjoy using your patio heater. If you want to produce less carbon footprint, you can go for electrical heaters instead.  

What Are the Different Types of Patio Heaters?

If you look into local and physical shops for patio heaters, you’ll see different options based on your needs.

Patio heaters are mostly recognized as mushroom or umbrella-type devices emitting heat in the air through radiating heat methods. 

The principle is the same throughout all the types, but the scope, BTUs, or the amount of energy needed for heat production, size, and purpose vary. 

Nevertheless, patio heaters provide heat in the form of infrared, which is not far off from the heat produced by the sun. 

Check out the different types of patio heaters based on form and power source.

  • Free-standing patio heater

The free-standing patio heater is very distinguished because of its form and design. A typical structure for this heater contains the basic parts, which include the base, pole, heating source, and reflector.

The base is larger than the other components. It provides a foundation for the free-standing patio heater, but it also keeps the tank hidden so as not to distract people with a free-roaming tank of gas. 

The pole supports the heating source or heater and connects it to the tank. This is the typical setup for mushroom patio heaters. With other designs, the heat source and the pole merge as one. 

Naturally, the heat is dispersed through the heat source. Then, a reflector above the heat source prevents heat loss by reflecting the upward moving heat back down. 

However, not all free-standing patio heaters have reflectors. But for those who do, it’s an efficient component.  

  • Tabletop patio heater 

The tabletop patio heater is similar to the free-standing patio heater, only it’s smaller and intended for table use. You may even see some of these heaters looking like a lamp. As a result, they are also used as a centerpiece. 

A tabletop patio heater provides heat for people conversing around the table. Hence, it’s a perfect heat source for small gatherings. 

  • Wall-mounted patio heater

A wall-mounted patio heater is exactly what it sounds like. It’s a heater you install on the wall with adjustable brackets. 

Unlike the other two, this patio heater is electrical, considering the potential flame hazard near the wall. 

But since it produces less heat, it would not be enough to warm a crowd. Nevertheless, it could be enough to provide heat for the family, depending on how many you install. 

You can buy patio heaters that need the following power source to operate:

Propane

Propane-fueled patio heaters are perhaps the most common type. You simply have to secure a propane tank and place it inside the base of the heater. Then, once it’s empty, you can have it refilled or exchanged for a full one in the grocery store. 

Natural Gas

Larger patio heaters sometimes use natural gas if an outlet is available at home. With this power source, you don’t have to worry about running out. Instead, as soon as the ignition cues in, the gas flows continuously, providing high amounts of heat. 

Electricity

Electrical patio heaters are becoming a trend in many homes. If you have a small patio or deck and only need to entertain a few people, this patio heater may be enough. Just plug it in and enjoy your patio in the winter. 

Install a Patio Cover

The structure of your outdoor space matters as far as heating is concerned. For example, if you have a patio, you get better insulation and protection from the snow if you have a patio cover. 

A patio cover is essentially a roof covering for your patio, which allows you to use the area even during slight weather changes. But of course, this would depend on the cover you have 

installed. 

The patio cover becomes even more useful during winter as it adds a thin blanket of warmth by entrapping the heat from your heat source. 

Pros and Cons

If you put up a patio cover, not only will you get additional protection from the snow or rain, but during summer, you also get the necessary shade against the sun. 

Moreover, patio covers can significantly improve the aesthetic of your overall outdoor space. With that, it increases the house’s value if ever you decide to sell it in the market. 

On the other side, putting up a patio cover means you can’t move the patio elsewhere anymore. It’s there to stay unless you reconstruct in another area. Likewise, patio covers can be high maintenance due to their susceptibility to moisture damage. 

Nonetheless, you can avoid accelerated deterioration if your patio covers are built using quality materials and fine work. Leave it to experienced patio cover builders to construct the cover so you can get the assurance that the structure will withstand multiple winters. 

Types of Patio Covers for Winter

If you want a patio cover that could give you extra protection during winter, choosing the materials is a critical step. Here are some of the patio covers you can consider that suit the winter weather.

Aluminum Patio Covers

Aluminum is a reliable material when it comes to roofing and patio covers. It is highly resistant to corrosion and other critical damages. However, you may have to consider a fitting design for this patio cover to ensure that it matches the look and appeal of your outdoor space. 

Acrylic Patio Covers

If you want something low maintenance but still does the job, perhaps the acrylic patio covers are for you. Acrylic is resistant to damage, typical with wood and other materials. You also get different choices when it comes to color and patterns.

Wooden Patio Covers

A wooden patio cover is a classic one that you can design and embellish according to your outdoor theme. While wood is prone to damages caused by moisture, insects, and molds, given the right amount of annual maintenance, you could have the patio cover around for a long time. 

Add Heated Floors

If you have a deck, then you would benefit from items that encourage and provide heat in your space. 

To start with, if what you have is a composite deck, you’d be pleased to know that composite materials can absorb heat which makes the deck comfortable to walk around on. But during winter, it may not be adequate. So, one alternative is using outdoor heated floor mats. 

On the other hand, if you renovate your deck, you can opt for extra insulation underneath the floorboards. Likewise, you can go for radiant heating or outdoor hydronic systems. 

However, this may cost you lots of money considering the elaborate design of the system. Nevertheless, if you have the cash to spare, then by all means, go for it. 

Pros and Cons

If you have a deck with heated floors, it becomes easier to spend time there during winter. 

For one, having heated floors can ensure equal heat distribution. If ever you have a social gathering on the deck, you can rest assured that your guests are kept warm in the area.

A huge downside of heated floors is that they are incredibly expensive. In addition, the installation will have to be done by a professional if you want everything to be in place. 

Likewise, if something gets damaged, there goes another bout of expenses for repair. 

Moreover, heated floors can also take time to warm up, so you will have to schedule your deck use after the floors are entirely heated. 

Nevertheless, if you are adamant about renovating your deck and installing heated floors, it’s best to consult with expert deck builders first. That way, you can get the best plan that suits your budget.  

Use Heater Lamps

Winter heater lamps are a cheaper alternative to patio heaters. They are relatively smaller, but they use infrared lighting, which gives off the necessary heat the same way that patio heaters do. 

They are portable, so you can bring them in and out of the house if necessary. 

A heater lamp may be enough for a small patio or deck, especially if you’re only a couple in the house. But for larger families, you may need to add more lamps to supply adequate heat.

Pros and Cons

Heater lamps are less costly than other heating devices or structures. 

Likewise, it’s electrically operated, so you don’t need to exert much effort to set it up. Instead, just plug it in and enjoy the warmth. 

Also, since you don’t use any gas in heater lamps, you can use it indoors without risking your health. 

On the other hand, a heater lamp may not be enough if you are hosting a large party outdoors. Your guest will remain cold and would prefer to stay inside if that’s the case. 

Conclusion 

Heating your outdoor patio during winter is not a complicated task as long as you know your options. And now that you do, consider other factors such as your budget, the number of households members you have, and the intensity of the cold weather in your area during winter.

If you wish to renovate your patio or deck, don’t forget to consult with experts to help you out in ensuring quality and safety all the way. 

If you are located in the Northern Colorado/ Southern Wyoming area, then give us a call today at 970-663-2868 or visit our home page and fill out the contact form to make an appointment to discuss your next home improvement project.

What are the Most Common Types of Windows?

picture of tall new windows

Windows are more than just a way to let some light into a room. They can be a styling choice, allowing you to show off a picturesque view. They can be used to increase ventilation and airflow. So, what are the most common types of windows? 

Single-hung, double-hung, picture, jalousie, and skylights are some of the most common options. But they aren’t the only window varieties to choose from. You might opt to get arched, bay, casement, egress, or garden windows. 

If you feel like you just read a list of made-up terms, don’t worry. Choosing the right type of window shouldn’t leave you feeling overwhelmed. Keep reading for a quick overview of some of the ones that are available on the market. 

Single-Hung

This is a relatively common option. It is comprised of two parts. The upper section will be fixed.  You will be able to move the lower section up and down. This is most commonly used for areas that you want to ventilate. Because of this, it’s most common to see it being used in powder rooms. 

Double-Hung  

As the name suggests, this is a variation of the single-hung window. In this case, both the bottom and the top panels are sliding windows. This is better for adding ventilation to bigger rooms. You can have cooler air flowing in through the lower window and hotter air flowing out the upper window.

Picture Windows

If you want to highlight a feature, like a stunning view or a manicured garden, you should consider getting a picture window. These are larger, often taking up a significant portion of the wall. They are ideal for providing natural sunlight to the room. They can also help protect you from air leakage as no part of this window opens. 

But, if you are considering this option, you will need to make sure that the windows are glazed. Otherwise, heat will be able to seep through this window, warming your house during the summer months.   

Sliders

These windows will be opened by sliding them horizontally left or right. This can be a good way of controlling airflow.  Plus, this style is contemporary, making it a great addition to modern homes. Sliders are a popular form of replacement window as they require fewer internal components than windows that slide up and down. Because these windows are so popular, there are plenty of options to choose from.

Awnings

These windows are a popular choice for apartments. They have a hinge at the top of the window. You will open it at the base, swinging it open. Sometimes, you will need to use a winder, cranking the handle to open it. With this option, it’s easy to control the amount of ventilation you want. This comes in particularly useful on a rainy day. 

Skylight

These are embedded into the roof. Not only will they give you a beautiful view of a cloudy sky, but they’ll also allow you to bring in plenty of natural light. And you’ll be saving on your electricity bills. Most commonly, these will be rectangular or circular, but you can get more creative shapes if you want. 

Arched 

If you are looking to make a statement, this is the type of window you need. These half-circle windows can be found at the top of doorways and large window arrays making the window reach farther up into taller rooms. They are usually a solid window much like a picture window, but the shape resembles a sunset, sunburst, or rainbow and can really add a lot of character to a large wall. Not to mention, letting in a ton of natural light into your space.

Bay 

If you want to create a showstopping architectural feature, bay windows are the way to go. These are large windows that work in a set of three to bump out of the house. This is like creating a small ledge. There are plenty of ways that you can use this small extension of the room. Some people prefer to use it as a reading nook. If you add a mattress, it can function as a daybed. Either way, it’s an incredible feature, which adds plenty of natural light to the house. 

Casement 

These types of windows have hinges on the side of the frame. On a clear day, you will be able to throw them open and get an unobstructed view of the area. This is a great way of getting more airflow through your house. Plus, as the hinges are on the outside of the window, it’s easy to take care of. 

Egress 

If you have a basement, you should consider using egress windows. These often have a small enclosed area outside. These windows are designed to serve a few functions, including: 

  • Allowing natural light into the basement
  • Improving airflow and stopping the build-up of humidity
  • Creating a means of escape if there is a fire. Because of this, there are strict safety measures that need to be followed. 

Garden 

If you have a green thumb, you might want to install garden windows. These are a variation of the bay window. But rather than making an enclosed area big enough for a human, the garden window just needs to be a shelf. This is enough for you to channel the light and heat onto your plants, creating a tiny greenhouse within the space of the window. 

Jalousie

These are a popular choice for media rooms, as they operate a little like a set of blinds. There is a lever at the side, allowing you to set the angle the windows are positioned at. This determines the amount of light coming into the room, as well as the breeze you are getting. 

Round Circle

Finally, you might consider using round circular windows. Most of these will be fixed. Though some will contain hinges so you can add more ventilation. Whether these windows are a good choice will depend on the style of your home. For example, they tend to go well with a Gothic theme. But they might look out of place in a coastal or postmodern home. 

Finding the Right Type of Windows For Your House  

Hopefully, you now have a better idea of some of the types of windows that you can choose from. But how will you know which one you should be using? Here are some of the things you should think about: 

  • Budget. Some of these windows will be more expensive to purchase and install. For example, a picture window will be more costly than a single-hung window. 
  • Size and location of the space. This helps determine whether installing the window will be practical. 
  • Style. Think about the type of house you want to create. You don’t want your new window to look out of place. It can be a good idea to look through social media accounts, like Pinterest, to get some design ideas. 
  • Purpose. Sometimes, you want the window to be an architectural feature or help show off some aspect of your property. At other times, though, it will be more functional, intended to bring more ventilation to the area. Or you can do both. 

Final Thoughts

There are dozens of types of windows available for you to choose from. Each of these can be used effectively in your home. Now, the job becomes narrowing down the right choice for you.

If you are still struggling to decide what type of windows you should get and you live in the Northern Colorado/Southern Wyoming area, give the TNT Home Improvements team a call. We’ll be able to do a free consultation, talking you through every step of the window replacement process and helping you find the right windows for you.

For more information, visit our Window Services page and fill out the contact form or give us a call at 970-663-2868.

What Should I Put Under My Second Story Deck? -Underdecking!

Patios and deck spaces are every home entertainer’s and family’s dream! There are so many ways you can utilize the space and, like the sunrooms of old, you can thoroughly enjoy nature all year-round while enjoying total comfort. But as great as these spaces are, they aren’t very useful if you can’t keep unwanted elements out of your newly refurbished space, like rain. So what should you put under your second story deck to keep it warm and dry?

In order to stay dry, underdeck systems have to redirect the rain and snow runoff. This can be done in a number of ways such as with deck membranes, underdeck ceilings, and waterproof deck flanges. 

If you’d like to know how you can keep water out from under your deck, and who can help you with it, I invite you to read the information below. 

How do I Keep Water Out From Under My Deck?

We know as homeowners and as a construction company that the solution is NOT to close up the spaces between patio boards. You’ll end up rotting your entire deck because the water from rain and snow has nowhere to go until it’s all evaporated. 

Both homeowners and companies alike have three common ways to prevent water from coming into your underdeck area:

  • Deck membranes
  • Waterproof deck flanges
  • Underdeck ceilings

All three of these methods focus on redirecting the runoff away from the area under your deck, but some methods work better than others. I’ll explain the first two methods briefly, but it’s the ceiling I’ll really focus on. 

Deck Membrane

A deck membrane is a large, thick plastic tarp that is attached intermittently between each gap in your deck’s flooring with waterproof tape. They act like troughs that collect the water and then typically lead it to downspouts, which then lead the water to the gutter and then the ground.

Deck Flanges

Waterproof deck flanges are the simplest option but function pretty much the same way. They’re inserts that you stick within the gaps of your deck to be both your deck spacers and deck troughs. They lead the water to the edge of your deck and throw the water out. 

Now we can get to my favorite option.

mobile-fort-collins-wood-deck-underdecking

What is an Under Deck Ceiling?

As a construction company that specializes in decks and patio covers – among other services – we prefer to utilize under-deck ceilings with our clients for their effectiveness, their clean and professional appearance, and their durability. 

An under deck ceiling works as a ceiling should, but underneath your second story deck (hence the name). Not only does it block water from falling into the area underneath, but it also collects the water through the gaps of your deck and is tilted slightly to lead the water to gutters on the side which then drop the water away from your house via gutter downspouts. 

Gas stations have often used a similar design. We prefer this method too, because of a few reasons. Unlike the membrane, which tends to look ugly and out of place, the ceiling looks like an intentional part of your home. And the new systems these days can even be made to look like a natural wood material despite actually being made of a durable aluminum.

We also prefer the underdeck ceiling over the flanges because the gutters and pipes lead the water to the ground instead of only leading it to the edge of the deck and creating a terrible splash zone. 

The ceiling option is definitely the most labor-intensive, but the results are worth it, and the labor isn’t so bad if you have a good team to help you. In fact, If your second story deck was constructed by us at TNT Home Improvements, you don’t have to worry about water ruining your new extended living space. 

Why Choose TNT Home Improvements?

I don’t know about you, but I’m not a fan of treating each house the same and doing the exact same process for each home that may or may not work as though we’re trying to use some kind of one-size-fits-all kit. Unless you’re living in a cookie-cutter suburb, your house is going to be shaped a bit differently from anyone else’s, leaving a lot to be desired from anyone who just throws a ceiling together. 

I and my team really prefer the personal approach. We like to carefully take the specific measurements of your home to make sure everything fits perfectly and meets all specifications and needs. 

We’re a mid-sized local company here in Loveland, CO who are tired of overrated big-name contractors or unlicensed friend-of-a-friend contractors giving the rest of us a bad name! You have our word (and other proofs) that we are licensed and insured, with photographic proofs of our handiwork, 150+ glowing reviews, and a list of references available on our site

When you consider us for your next home improvement project, you can rest assured that all of our projects are engineer approved because we happen to have an engineer on our staff who is responsible for overseeing our work to make sure it’s done right the first time.

But as much as I love to praise my team toot the TNT horn, I think I’ll let Margaret, a previous customer, do that for me.

“Would recommend to anyone in Northern CO! Every single person we dealt with was just fantastic. The work was top rate and the pricing was very affordable. Most of all we appreciated knowing the job was being done right by a local company. The work was done on time and even came in under budget.” – Margaret S.

What Can I Put Under My Underdeck Space?

Once you have your new outdoor living space, what can you do with it? What can you put in that expanse of space? Plenty of things, if you’re creative enough. 

Underdeck systems are fantastic solutions for problems like the lack of space in the rest of the home, no proper entertaining area, or the severe lack of a BBQ area that you can actually use more than a few months out of the year. They’re almost like sunrooms, but for modern-day homes, and you can do more than put some chairs and plants in it. This outdoor living space holds potential for numerous applications, such as:

  • Outdoor kitchen with year-round BBQ
  • Outdoor dining area
  • Entertainment area with sofa, bar, and TV
  • Storage for the really big toys
  • Kids’ play area
  • And more

But none of these ideas can work if water from the patio above the space comes in to drench everything and everyone in it. That is why it’s crucial for deck spaces to be covered with an underdecking system or with a patio cover, which we also do.

In Short…

Underdeck systems are wonderful solutions to common household problems and are beautiful extensions of the home that can allow you and your family to enjoy quality time together and with friends in perfect comfort, especially with the right materials and the right team to help you waterproof the space. 

If you don’t live in Loveland, that’s okay. We serve Larimer County, Weld County, and even get up into some parts of Southern Wyoming. If you’re located in the Northern Colorado or Southern Wyoming areas and want to discuss your next home improvement project, then by all means, give us a call today at (970) 663-2868 or visit the Deck Services page and fill out the contact form to make an appointment. We look forward to talking with you.

How Much Does It Cost to Reside a House?

Residing your house is a major project that can increase your property value and curb appeal. And if you do it right, you might be looking at a home that can sustain its impressive exterior look for years and years to come.

But how costly is it to replace the siding on a house? The average cost to reside a house is around $2 – $50 per square foot. It can go higher or lower depending on the size of your home, the number of stories, and the siding materials you choose.

Nonetheless, it is a pretty huge investment. But despite the substantial financial demand, it also has great returns considering how much it upscales your home. With that, hiring reliable professionals to reside your house is your best option to make sure you get your money’s worth.

If you’re planning to reside your house, here’s everything you need to know regarding costs, materials, and installation.

What Is the Purpose of Residing a House?

There are essentially three major reasons why you should reside your house.

1.      To upgrade exterior protection.

Your house’s siding or wall cladding is not just for show. It has a critical role in protecting your home. A durable siding can keep your house away from the damages caused by weather changes or other extreme conditions like hurricanes or tornadoes. In addition, it keeps the entire structure sturdy along with the primary foundations.

2.      To improve your house aesthetics.

Everyone loves a beautiful house. And with beauty comes higher value.

You may choose to reside your home if you want to update its exterior design. It could be out of preference, or you may want to put your house up for sale.

3.      To repair deteriorating sliding.

If your house is 30 to 50 years old and the wall cladding is clearly hanging on for dear life, then residing your house is a much-needed home improvement project. It could improve the structure’s integrity and increase your house’s appeal.

Siding that starts to deteriorate creates holes that can let in moisture and even unwanted critters.

How Long Does Siding Lasts?

A house siding can last for an average of 50 to 60 years. However, the specific lifespan of siding depends on its materials.

For example, bricks and stone siding can last for up to 100 years. At the same time, vinyl and fiber cement can stay in good condition for 60 years.

Of course, this is mainly dependent on the quality of installation. If it is done haphazardly, you can expect minor to major defects in the future. But if it was put up impeccably, then you’ll have to wait decades before the next residing.

How Much Does It Cost to Reside a House?

You can reside your house with a budget ranging from $2,500 to $16,000. The average expenses would run at $10,000, give or take. Naturally, this would include all the construction materials for residing and labor.

However, the exact cost to reside your house depends on the size, type of siding, and design you wish to adopt. Check out the specific estimates for residing depending on the house size.

1000 Sq Ft House: A 1000 square feet house often needs a budget of $1,000 to $3,000 for residing.

1500 Sq Ft House: It will cost you at least $3,000 to reside in a 1500 square feet house.

1,800 Sq Ft House: You have to prepare more or less $4,599 for residing if you have a 1,800 square feet house.

2000 Sq Ft House: The cost of residing a 2000 square feet house is between $4,300 to $15,800.

2500 Sq Ft House: If your house is about 2500 square feet, prepare a budget between $5,750 to $32,500. The type of material primarily impacts the overall expenses along with labor.

How Much Does It Cost to Put Siding on a 2-Story House?

The average cost of residing a 2-story house is about  $7,000 to $16,000. That is if you are planning to have vinyl siding. The expenses will most likely increase if you go for wood or stone siding.

Aside from the materials, the installation cost is another critical element of the budget. Again, you might find it pricier if you opt for removing and replacing the existing siding.

In some cases, you can simply ask the contractor to put new siding on old ones. But this is conditional and requires a thorough assessment of the existing siding first.

How Does Vinyl Siding Increase Home Value?

Vinyl siding boosts your home value by 63% of the project’s cost.

You can associate this increase with the added and updated look and protection of your home. Not only will it enhance the exterior protective layer of your house, but it will also ensure its durability and longevity.

Moreover, adding new siding improves the house’s aesthetics, making it more appealing to potential homeowners if you are trying to sell your house.

What Should I Look for When Residing a House?

When planning to reside your house, factors such as type of siding materials, your budget, the overall theme, and the architectural design of the structure should be considered.

Since residing is a major home renovation, it requires considerable planning. Part of which includes choosing materials that suit the weather and climate in your area.

Likewise, you have to assess if said materials fit the general design of your home, unless, of course, if you’re planning to change your home’s style. For example, contemporary houses can use wood or vinyl sidings.

Nonetheless, you’ll have plenty of options for siding that might fit right for your exterior. Check out some of the most popular siding options below.

Types of Siding

1.       Vinyl

If it’s practicality you’re after, then a vinyl siding would be on top of your list. Materials for this type of siding are low maintenance and incredibly affordable, with average prices that go between $3 to $8 per square foot. 

Moreover, vinyl siding has a longer lifespan of 30 – 40 years. So, it should last you a while before needing to be replaced.

Despite their synthetic nature, you can find many vinyl sidings mimicking wood, stones, and other styles. You can also find vinyl sidings in different colors and designs. They can also be shaped like fish scales or arranged in panels, shingles, and more.

2.       Wood

Wood is a perfect choice if you’re going for traditional siding. It comes in different styles and has an inert versatility that gives you plenty of options for design. The average price for wood siding is between $5 to $14 per square foot.

Likewise, its natural looks and charm stand the test of time. Plus, it’s pretty easy to install.

However, one huge downside of wood is that it needs high maintenance as it is prone to water and weather damages.

So, it is absolutely important to choose the right wood. Or better yet, consult an expert so you can avoid colossal mistakes.

3.       Brick

Are you looking for sidings that could last for a century? Then, you can never go wrong with brick sidings. You can have your house exterior installed with full brick sidings that typically cost about $14 to $30 per square foot. But if you go for brick veneers, the costs could be lower.

Brick sidings are also low maintenance. However, the installation may be a bit pricier, considering how intricate the process is.

4.       Stone

If you have a luxurious taste that leans more on a classic design, then you might find stone sidings to be appealing.

You can choose different types of stones like granite and limestone. That is, if you’re going for a natural, earthy look for your façade.

But aside from aesthetics, stone sidings are also effective in protecting your home from any damage caused by the weather.

However, just like bricks, stone can also be expensive, costing around $30 – $50 per square foot. Stone veneers are less pricy in the $4 to $10 per square foot range.

5.       Metal

Metal sidings are often associated with retro houses. But these durable exteriors can match any other design depending on how you plan to style it.

Nonetheless, metals sidings are durable and reliable in protecting your exterior from damages like insects and physical damage.

Just make sure that you choose the right kind of metal and have it installed by professionals. Otherwise, you might encounter rust in the future. If you’re going for the long-term, stainless steel often leads the pack.

You can expect to spend an average of about $4 to $8 per square foot if you choose a metal siding.

6.       Concrete

If you’re living in an area prone to hurricanes, flooding, and wildfires, then having a concrete exterior can be a great way to defend your home. 

Concrete is a mixture of cement, water, and gravel that turns into a paste. The paste hardens over time, fortifying the wall. 

One of the many strengths of concrete siding is its longevity. You can expect it to last for generations. 

The estimated cost for concrete siding is between $3 to $6 per square foot. Installation could be pricier compared to other types of siding.

7.       Fiber Cement

Choosing a siding that you like can be tricky, especially if budget and style conflict. Or if you want a natural look but don’t want the maintenance of wood. 

Fortunately, you can still get the natural looks of wood siding without the yearly upkeep, thanks to fiber cement.

Fiber cement is an artificial exterior cladding made of cement, sand, and some wood fibers. 

The form and bits of its texture copy that of wood. Fiber Cement can come with different styling options and costs an average of $6 – $13 per square foot.

What Type of Siding Lasts the Longest?

Bricks and stone sidings are known to last the longest among different siding materials. They can even last for a hundred years provided that they’re maintained well. This is pretty obvious with comes Victorian houses that withstood the test of time. 

However, the issue with these natural sidings is that they can be significantly expensive.

If you’re on a budget but are looking for siding materials that can last for decades, then your best option can be vinyl or fiber cement siding.

A vinyl siding is cheaper, but if you’re going for the durability of concrete, you’ll have your best chances with the fiber cement.

What Color Siding Fades the Least

White is known to fade the least when it comes to color siding. However, more often than not, lighter colors don’t fade fast.

On the other hand, darker colors tend to go dull over a long period. This can result from sunlight exposure or weather changes that diminish the paint or the embedded color of the siding.

Therefore, when choosing a siding material, it is best to consider factors such as the type of weather you have in your area. If fading is inevitable, you can always go for siding materials that can be repainted instead of replaced entirely.

What Color Siding Has the Best Resale Value?

You can get the best resale value if your siding has a neutral, lighter color. It could be in the shade of gray, blue, beige, light brown, or taupe. White is also a great option if you want to increase your home’s value.

These colors are a hit in the market because they give an inviting, relaxing vibe. You can also mix and match depending on the exterior design you like.

On the other hand, strong outdated colors only interest a few people. So, it’s best to stir clear from swatches that include mustard yellow, pink, orange, and purple.

Nonetheless, there’s a slight caveat with this rule. If you can design the colors tastefully, it might give you high resale value. But this would take a lot of work and creativity on your side.

How Is Siding Installed?

The difficulty level of installing siding on your house’s exterior will depend on the type of materials you have.

For example, if you go for vinyl siding, you will notice that each panel has built-in slots where you can hammer the nail that attaches the vinyl on the wall.

However, there’s more to installing wall cladding than nailing them onto the wall. First, it needs proper leveling and cutting of angles. Not to mention the very job-specific equipment needed to get you and the siding up into the air beside your house safely.

Hence, if you’re inexperienced in this task, the best way to ensure that your residing project remains fail-proof is to hire a contractor like us right here at TNT Home Improvements to do it.

Can You Put Siding Over Old Siding?

Yes, in some circumstances you can opt to cover your old siding with new ones and use it as a substrate. But you can only do this if the existing siding is in good condition, free of wear or any critical damages.

However, you must have an expert looking into the quality and condition of the existing siding before you install new siding over it. When you assess it yourself, you might miss some damaged or deteriorating parts, leading to horrible incidents concerning your siding.

Simply put, even though it is acceptable to put new sidings over existing ones, without professional assessment, it can lead to further damages that may cost you more than the average residing expenses.

Is It Better to Remove Old Siding?

It is always better to remove old siding than have it covered with new ones.

Although the former is cheaper, retaining your old siding and having the new one sit on top of it has some drawbacks.

For example, if the old siding could have undetected water damage and placing new siding on top could potentially collapse the entire structure in the future. Likewise, wood rot can happen without knowing it, as the old siding is hidden completely. Similarly, it can be prone to pests and insect damage.

Some siding manufacturers will actually void the warranty of their product if you install it over the old siding and not just directly to a good quality OSB.

Moreover, it is cleaner and smoother to remove the old siding first. Keeping it around can lead to sloppy installation, compromising its look altogether.

Summary

Residing your house may be a big investment, but because you are upgrading the outermost layer of protection and aesthetics, the payoff always justifies the upgrade. This is because your property value increases, plus you get to live in a house that looks and feels good.

With the considerable budget it requires, it is best to hire professionals to install your new siding. This way, you’ll have the confidence that the residing project is done with care, precision, and quality in mind.

If You Are Located in the Northern Colorado/ Southern Wyoming Area, Then Give Us a Call Today at 970-663-2868 or Visit Our Siding Services Page and Fill Out the Contact Form to Make an Appointment to Discuss Your Next Home Improvement Project.

Should I Replace All My Windows at Once?

older window with plants decor

Every good contractor would advise you to replace the windows in your home after a particular period. After all, windows can degrade as they age and are prone to various damages.

However, it is always a concern whether you have to replace a few windows or every window at once. The answer lies in factors such as your budget, the reason for the replacement, and your aesthetic choice.

Nevertheless, it is ideal to replace all your windows at once. It is financially wiser as the market value for your house goes up, and you save more on labor.

If you’re wondering how a major window replacement project helps your house then you’ve come to the right place.

Should I Replace All My Windows at the Same Time?

Yes, replacing all your windows simultaneously is an ideal decision when it comes to improving your window’s aesthetics, efficiency, security, and improving your overall curb appeal. However, there are several factors influencing this choice, and they are all up for consideration.

Replacing a window boils down to the level of urgency it requires. For example, if a couple of windows are damaged, you may have to fix them immediately.

If they go beyond the state of reparability, replacing them is the best decision you can make. This might bring you to the question of whether you should replace the rest of the windows as well.

If this is the case, you have to consider your budget at hand. If you have room in your home improvement budget to do so, then go ahead and replace all your windows at the same time.

If you already have a few that are failing then this will be the proactive approach as it probably won’t be too much longer before the rest follow suit.

Partial Vs. Whole House Window Replacement

As the name implies, a partial house window replacement involves several of your house’s windows, while a whole-house window replacement covers all the windows in your home. Both types of replacement can be a major project depending on the number of units.

You can opt for a partial window replacement when minor damage has been detected on specific frames or screens. On the other hand, a whole house window replacement is appropriate if you are elevating the style of your home or if the windows go past their prime age.

Is It Worth It to Replace Home Windows?

Absolutely. Replacing your home windows come with several benefits not just for the structural integrity of your house but also in terms of property value.

Nonetheless, like any other project, there could be downsides ongoing for a whole house window replacement. Unfortunately, the gravity of these drawbacks is often felt when you pursue the project without proper planning.

So, to help you come up with the right decision, check out the following pros and cons of replacing your windows all at once.

Pros

1.       Cohesive Window Styling

If your purpose for the window replacement project is to update the style of your home, then doing it all at once is the most practical way to do it.

This is pretty common with houses that are decades old. At some point, owners would choose to remodel their home and keep the window frames and screens up the trend.

Changing the windows altogether guarantees that the quality and construction are even among all the windows. Likewise, it also ensures that the same materials are available and consistent for the project.

2.       Adds More Value to Your Home

Window replacement is considered one of the top home improvements that add value to your home. 

In most cases, you get up to 85% in ROI (return of investment) when you change your windows to an efficient design. Nevertheless, the ROI depends on different factors such as materials used, style, and durability.

3.       Repairs the Defects All at Once

Sometimes it’s tricky to find damages in your windows unless they are already too complex to ignore. But when you employ total replacement for your house windows, these defects are automatically covered.

Your contractor or window installers will secure that the frame fits well and the materials are of high quality, such as Amerimax products that can withstand the wear and tear common to windows.

Of course, you can expect this superior service level when you go for window installers committed to providing nothing but the best work.

Cons

1.       Requires a Specific Budget

Just like any other home improvement project, you will need to prepare a large sum of money depending on the window type you’re aiming for.

Hence, before pushing for a complete window replacement at home, it is beneficial to schedule a consultation with experts. Doing so will help you a lot with your planning based on your allocated budget.

If budget is a concern, reach out to us here at TNT Home Improvements to discuss our financing options.

2.       Major Home Improvement

Naturally, when you pursue a whole house window replacement, you subject your property to a major home improvement. This means that the labor process may take time and become a minor inconvenience for your household as opposed to simply having a few windows replaced.

However, this is a small sacrifice compared to the perks of a full home window replacement.

How Long Do Windows Last and How Often Should They Be Replaced?

Windows are known to last for up to 15 to 20 years. At least this is true for modern windows. Depending on the manufacturer, warranties can go for up to 25 years which is essentially a lifetime warranty considering the lifespan of the window.

You should consider replacing your windows after 15 to 25 years. Once your window goes beyond its optimum age, defects and inefficient functions become common. 

Therefore, it is crucial to learn more about your window’s warranty and the specific lifespan for the unit.

Why Should I Replace My Windows at Home?

In a nutshell, here are several factors that prompt window replacement.

Durability or Age

Some things are not meant to last forever. Unfortunately, windows are one of them. Hence, if your windows are past their intended lifespan, it’s essential to have them replaced. Otherwise, it will rapidly deteriorate in quality or be subjected to damages.

Energy Efficiency

You may want to consider replacing your windows at once if you aim for energy cost reduction. 

For example, air conditioning and heating units tend to consume more energy when air leaks through windows exist. 

Likewise, you could reposition or go for windows with larger panels to invite more natural light in obscure areas. This way, you could have minimal need for artificial lights that consume electric energy.

Damaged Windows

It’s time to change your windows when damages go out of control. These include water damage or intrusion defects, fogged glass, cracks, holes, and rattling frames.

Safety and Security

Windows that come with older homes often lack the tight safety and security offered by modern windows. So, if your windows cannot be secured tightly and efficiently, seek a whole house window replacement.

How Much Do Replacement Windows Cost on Average?

According to Forbes, the average cost for replacing a window ranges from $200 to $1,200.

Depending on the materials, you can also go for windows priced at $100 to $650. However, it may not be as superior as the pricier ones. On the other hand, the average cost for window installation or labor is between $100 to $300 for each window.

Is It Cheaper to Replace One Window at a Time?

Upfront, replacing one window at a time is cheaper. However, replacing all your windows in one order can be financially beneficial for the longer term.

For starters, contractors and window manufacturers tend to offer discounts for larger projects.

You also have the assurance that all windows are installed at the same standards, which improves heating and cooling efficiency. With that, you can save more money from energy costs.

Final Thoughts

Replacing all your house windows at once comes with a lot of perks. But you need to consider several factors given that this project is a huge investment. 

Replacing one broken window pane may feel like a potential DIY project, but when it comes to a whole house window replacement project it’s best to call in the experts.

Need Consultation About Window Replacement? We Can Help

If you are located in the Northern Colorado/ Southern Wyoming area, then give us a call today at 970-663-2868 or visit our Window services page and fill out the contact form to make an appointment to discuss your next home improvement project.

What Are the Different Types of Patios?

What Are the Different Types of Patios?

A home with a patio is nothing less than attractive with a welcoming atmosphere. Patios are century-old outdoor areas that remain trendy. They are used for many functions such as dinner by the garden or simply for hanging out.

If you wish to add or renovate a patio in your yard, it is best to understand your different options. While people often assume that patios are all the same, architecture and exterior design enthusiasts can distinguish the patio designs and materials.

Fortunately, this knowledge can now be shared with many homeowners who desire to improve their patios. Here’s everything you need to know and more about the different types of patios.

Types of Patios

The different types of patios are generally based on the materials used for the surface. You can decide on the patio you want according to your preferred design, the size of the yard, and other factors.

In the meantime, check out your options for the different patio types.

1.      Clay Bricks

If you’re aiming for a patio that has a bit of a nostalgic streak or a historical feel, then clay bricks would probably suit your taste. 

Bricks, as a whole, can attain different designs, especially geometric ones. Additionally, clay bricks are known to last for a very long time. Think of existing clay bricks that dated as far as centuries ago. Hence, it’s a pretty impressive choice.

The downside, however, is that clay bricks can be pretty expensive. Nonetheless, you can opt for slightly less costly brick alternatives such as reclaimed bricks. Not only are they relatively cheaper, but they are also more environmentally friendly.

2.      Concrete

Concrete patios are cheap yet durable. You can also even out the concrete, giving it a clean and smooth surface.

Moreover, concrete patios last a lifetime provided that they are well-maintained. Plus, if damages are sustained, it doesn’t cost a lot of money for repairs.

Concrete patios can now be given a custom look with the use of a texture and pattern method called ‘stamped concrete’. In this way, the concrete can have a stone pattern ‘stamped’ into it and can even have color dies added to it to further enhance the look.

3.      Flagstone

If you go for flagstones, you’ll need professional assistance. Flagstones are classic patio surfaces that can look completely elegant depending on the design. They are thick slabs of stone that mostly come in irregular shapes.

However, they are unbelievably heavy. Hence, installing flagstones on your patio surface will need a few tools and manpower.

Flagstones will look gorgeous on your patio. But one of its drawbacks is how it absorbs heat during a scorching hot summer. Likewise, the flagstones can be slippery during rainy seasons, so you would need extra care when walking on the patio.

4.      Gravel

Patios don’t necessarily need to be even. Gravel can suffice if you’re more into the rustic atmosphere or just want to maximize the outdoor feels.

Aside from the fact that gravel is far less affordable than other patio surface materials, it can also be installed without too much labor. You can even design the patio yourself.

Moreover, gravel can allow the smooth drainage of water out of the patio when it’s raining.

5.      Patio Pavers

If you’re looking for a patio surface that is easy to install, then the patio pavers are your best choice. The patio pavers are designed to interlock with one another. Therefore, installing them in your yard can be a walk in the park, provided that you plan it well. You can do it yourself or with minimum help.

Another great thing about patio pavers is that they come with different choices. For example, you can choose a design that resembles wood or brick.

6.      Sand

Everyone loves the beach – or at least most people do. That’s why it’s not surprising to find homeowners that like to recreate the beach environment right in their backyard. To do so, they prefer adding sand on the patio to any other materials.

While sand can be ideal if you’re holding beach-themed parties or planning to install a pool, they can sometimes be a bit annoying.

One example is when it’s raining, and the patio becomes wet. You might find yourself dragging large portions of sands everywhere.

7.      Stone Slate

Stone slates are essentially stones cut in tiles. They are laid on the surface to create a more textured patio. This type of slate also allows you to be more creative and flexible in your patio design.

When it comes to the costs of this type of patio, it is generally based on the type of stone you want. For example, if you’re aiming for marble, prepare to spend a few bucks more. On the other hand, a more affordable option would be travertine.

8.      Tile

Tiles are an excellent patio surface choice. They provide a clean, comfortable texture that almost seems like an extension of the inner house.

Furthermore, you get a wide range of options for tile design, color, thickness, and materials used. Tiles are also affordable and can easily be installed with a breeze.

There is no doubt that the visual appeal of tile is off the charts. However, one of its drawbacks is that tiles can often become slippery when wet. And given that patios are exposed to rain outside, this would be inevitable.

What Type of Patio Is the Best?

Experts recommend stone tiles as the best patio option if you’re looking for a patio surface that guarantees longevity and style.

Stone slates or tiles provide enough friction to avoid any accidents during rainy seasons. Moreover, it gives a natural feel or texture that elevates the entire quality of the patio.

On the other hand, if you are on a tighter budget, a concrete patio could be the best patio type for you. Concrete patios are also durable and ideal for areas with changing weather. However, it will require a certain degree of maintenance to make sure that it remains stable.

What Is the Easiest Patio to Maintain?

The easiest patio to maintain is the concrete patio. Concrete, in general, requires low maintenance. The surface is even enough to have the wind sweep off debris from the garden. Likewise, damages are easily repaired without spending too much money.

What Type of Patio Lasts the Longest?

Patios with brick clays are known to last the longest. Bricks can last a century, as evident with structures we still see today constructed about 100 years ago. So, if that’s the direction you wish to take with your patio, then, by all means, go for the brick clay.

On the other hand, you can also go for patio pavers and stone slates. They can last for years and remain durable and resistant to any damages.  

What Is the Least Expensive Patio Material?

Concrete is probably the least expensive patio material. In addition, unlike other materials for patio surfaces, concrete is more widely available and accessible in the local hardware stores. Therefore, if you choose to go for concrete, you’ll save yourself the trouble of material shortage.

What Is the Average Size of Patio?

An average patio is about 16×18 feet in dimension. This size is good enough to entertain guests, host a small get-together, or just hang out outside for a bit. If you’re using your patio for larger events, naturally, you will have to allot more space.

How To Protect Your Patio From Harsh Weather?

Choosing the type of patio you like may not be enough. At some point, you will have to find a way to protect it from the damages caused by strong sunlight or heavy rain. An excellent way to protect your patio from harsh weather is by having professional builders install a patio cover like a shingled roof cover or a pergola.

The Bottom Line

When selecting the type of patio you want for your house, consider factors such as longevity, quality, price, and weather appropriateness. Consult with the experts if necessary.

If you are located in the Northern Colorado/ Southern Wyoming area, then give us a call today at 970-663-2868 or fill out the contact form on our home page to make an appointment to discuss your next home improvement project.

All About Composite Decking

Variety of colors of composite decking

Maintaining a deck could require a lot of work, especially if the materials used are prone to damage.

Earlier deck constructions were mainly made of lumber that needed high yearly maintenance. That’s why homeowners have switched to composite decking.

Newer houses with decks can now choose either timber or composite materials for the structure. 

Composite materials are made of wood fibers mixed with plastic film through bonding agents. They are often chosen because they are more durable than their wood counterpart.

However, going for composite decking depends on many other factors. So, if you’re wondering if composite decking suits your home, stick around and find out.

What Is Composite Decking?

Simply put, composite decking refers to deck construction that uses composite materials such as deck boards made of recycled lumber and high-density plastic strips. 

It is considered eco-friendly and sustainable as composite materials are less prone to damage sustained by wood decks.

What Do I Need to Know About Composite Decking?

Composite decking is not a complicated project. All you need to know is how the composite materials match your aesthetic taste and the level of maintenance they require.

While a wooden look is often the top choice for a deck, composite decks are not too far from achieving this look. 

In terms of maintenance, composite decks require less work as they are more resistant to water damage, termite infestation, and other critical destruction.

What to Consider When Choosing a Composite Deck?

There are a few factors you need to understand before you go for composite decking. That includes the type of materials, visual aesthetic, design, size, budget, and other factors. 

Furthermore, it is best to determine if you plan to outsource the construction project to professional deck builders or do it yourself.

Materials

Composite decking materials are not hard to find, especially in this day and age where everything is found online.

We’ve established that deck boards, which comprise a majority of the deck, are made of recycled timber and plastic.

However, composite deck board quality may differ from one manufacturer to another. Hence, it greatly benefits your project if you choose high-grade composite decking products from reliable manufacturers. And if you’re looking for exactly that, you can check out TimberTech.

On the other hand, if you plan to hire a contractor or team of experts in Colorado to build your composite deck, you can rest assured that TNT Home Improvements use nothing less than quality materials from TimberTech.

Visual Aesthetics and Design

Planning to build a composite deck involves identifying the right color that matches your home, the shape of the deck, and many other factors of its visual appeal.

With composite boards, you don’t need to paint the deck as they already come in a variety of colors. Moreover, some colors and the textures almost imitate that of a wooden deck.

Hence, if you’re going for a traditional lumber deck look but with high considerations for durability, then composite decking could just be the right choice for your taste.

Size

The size of the composite deck depends on the area where the structure is placed. It could also be influenced by the type of activities you’re thinking of doing on the deck.

Moreover, size can also depend on your budget. It’s a general principle in a way. Larger composite decks will have more expenses than smaller and medium-sized ones.

Budget

The type of composite deck you can build in your home also relies on the budget at hand. If you have a tight budget, you may have to consider the size and the type of composite materials to use.

Unfortunately, cheaper boards tend to have less quality than costlier ones. So, you may have to rethink the size of the finished space.

Location

While composite decking materials are highly durable, they could still deteriorate over time. Fortunately, you can enjoy it for longer than wood boards.

Nonetheless, its speed of deterioration can be influenced by its position. For example, if it’s directly exposed to strong sunlight, it could start to fade faster. 

Therefore, it’s good to consider the position or whether you should put up a deck cover.

Is Composite Decking Any Good?

Yes, composite decking is a great choice and can be well worth the money you spend. 

You can think of composite decking as an evolutionary step in deck building. It resolved some of the critical issues that came along with wooden decks while maintaining outstanding aesthetics in the process.

Check out some of the benefits of composite decking.

Composite decking materials are made against common decking damages.

It’s always about high-quality and endurance all the way. These are what many homeowners look for in a deck. Composite decking offers exactly these qualities. 

As man-made materials, they are designed to withstand damages caused by molds, mildew, water and sunlight exposure, and many others.

It requires low maintenance.

Since composite decks are less prone to damages, it also means that they need low maintenance compared to any other type of deck. So, if you don’t have the time and extra energy to refinish your deck once a year, better stick to a composite deck.

It is easier to hide the fasteners

Because of the way most composite deck boards are manufactured, they are created with special groves down the side that can be used to attach hidden fasteners.

These fasteners have sharp teeth that grab the boards on either side of it and a screw run down through the middle holding it securely to a joist underneath. All of this sits down in between the boards making for a clean finish.

It’s environmentally friendly.

Composite materials are made of recycled items. Hence, they are more sustainable and environmentally friendly. Moreover, they last longer, so you can save yourself from frequent board replacements.

What Is Bad About Composite Decking?

Although composite decking has plenty of advantages, it doesn’t mean that it has no drawbacks.

It can be pricey.

Composite decking can be a bit pricier than your average wood deck. The high cost is primarily due to the durability that comes with the material. Nonetheless, you get your money’s worth as composite decking lasts longer than any other deck.

It lacks the natural feel of the deck.

While it’s true that composite deck imitates the color, pattern, and sometimes texture of wood. However, if you were to compare them side by side you would see that composite lacks that real wood feel. 

Especially if you are someone who likes stained wood and seeing the depth and layers of the grain, composite may not be for you.

It still needs some degree of maintenance.

You will have to maintain your composite deck to ensure that it remains durable for the years to come. It includes sweeping the deck board, picking the leaves, and the occasional light wash or spot clean.

How Much Does a Composite Deck Cost?

The average cost of a composite deck is about $8,000, give or take. The full price depends on the size of the deck and your choice of materials. Composite boards cost about $20 to $40 per square foot.

How Long Does a Composite Deck Last?

A well-maintained composite deck can last between 25 to 30 years. After that, replacing the boards wouldn’t be a pain, especially if you choose composite products with warranties.

How Does Composite Decking Drain?

Under the composite deck, you can install a gutter system. Therefore, you will have to reserve the surface below for drainage that directs the water out from under the deck.

If you’re wondering if a drainage system designed for decks is right for your next project, then check out our article “What is Underdecking

Final Thoughts

A composite deck is a fine addition to your home structure. Not only does it provide a space for backyard or outdoor activities, but it also increases the value of your house. 

If you’re considering composite decking, make sure you consult with professional builders to help you plan the project within your budget range.If you are located in the Northern Colorado/ Southern Wyoming area, then give us a call today at 970-663-2868 or visit our deck services page and fill out the contact form to make an appointment to discuss your next home improvement project.

What Are Egress Windows?

Window installations can be complex and this is particularly true if you have a basement that needs some light to be provided to it through the installation of some windows. There are specific window types that must be used for these applications. You might not know much about this process, which is why you need to learn about egress windows.

Egress windows are commonly used for basement lighting or as a means of escape from a room that is lower than the ground level in your home. Egress windows are placed even with the ground line and can extend up above this line at various heights to provide light into rooms that are located below the foundation level in a home or business.

If you are ready to learn more about what egress windows are, read on!

What is the Purpose of an Egress Window?

In most places, basements are actually required to have egress windows because they provide a means to escape the room if something like a fire takes place. They also allow light to come into parts of the house or business that are built below the level of the ground. It would be a very dark and close feeling in these kinds of basement rooms without these windows.

Older homes were not required to have the same size windows as modern homes, and some of these homes will actually not have large enough windows to be used as an escape route. Many people with homes that were built before World War II choose to remodel these areas to include larger windows for improved light and for better safety for anyone who is sleeping or working in the basement.

Remember that the primary function of egress windows is to be used as a way to get out of a basement that is on fire, so you should consider safety as your first consideration when you are looking into adding these windows to your home.

What’s the Difference Between an Egress Window and a Regular Window?

Egress windows are really made with escape in mind, but they are not designed any differently than regular windows. These windows are often placed specifically for safety, but otherwise they will be the same double-paned casement or sliding windows that you might have in the rest of your home. They will have to meet a set size requirement to be an egress window and meet code standards, however.

People sometimes think that they can place regular windows into these living spaces and call it good, but you will often have to meet some code specifications for fire safety and to get your home insured. This is why it is a good idea to know what an egress window really is before you have someone come and put in new windows in the basement area of your home.

How do I Know if a Window is Egress?

You can measure your windows in your basement to see if they qualify as an egress window. You will need to measure the window placement from the ground inside your basement. This measurement must meet the code so that the window can be used for an easy escape. You will then need to measure the width of the window at the middle, top, and bottom.

Next, take vertical measurements on the sides and in the middle. This will tell you the width and the length of the window so that you can check the measurements against the codes that are upheld in your county or state. There are some international building rules and regulations that are referred to if there is no specific allowance that is made for this part of the building code in your area.

This is a simple process, but it can be very important to complete if you are considering buying a home that has basement bedrooms. You want to know if you are going to have an expensive replacement and remodel process ahead of you to be able to bring the house up to code. In some cases, you cannot get homeowner’s insurance if these windows are not sized correctly.

What Qualifies as an Egress Window?

Egress windows have to meet code, particularly if there are bedrooms in your basement. International building code states that each bedroom should have one egress window at least, just in case of fire. These must be large enough that an adult can fit out of them.

The standard that is adhered to in most situations is that the egress window must be at least 5.7 square feet, 20 inches wide by 24 inches high. The opening must be no higher than 44 inches from the floor. Double-paned casement or sliding windows are acceptable. The placement is the thing that defines them as egress windows rather than the design and materials that they are made of.

If your basement has the older-style windows that simply rotate inward some to let in some fresh air, these are not up to code. An adult person could not fit out through these windows which means that they need to be replaced. You can elect to have larger egress windows than the minimum size ones that are listed above, but you just cannot make them so small that an adult will not be able to climb out in the case of a fire or other emergency.

How Much Do Egress Windows Cost?

The answer to this can vary somewhat depending on your area and the number of alterations that will be needed to replace your windows. The job can be quite expensive if your home is older and has very small windows that are currently framed in. If you are simply replacing older egress windows with new ones, the task will not cost as much as having to remodel to fit larger windows into your basement walls.

You can expect an average of about $1,000-$5,000 per window to install. This can really add up if you have a large basement, so you should consider the rooms that will need the windows first, such as bedrooms. These rooms should be worked on first so that your home can meet code more quickly. This can also be a major cost if you are thinking of buying an older home and realize that this change needs to be made to secure insurance for your home.

Get Help With Your Egress Window Installation

Egress windows are not tough to install, but you might have a lot of questions about the process before you want to start on the work. This is normal and having an expert come help you to decide which windows you will need and how much the project will cost is a big help. Working with a team of qualified installers, this kind of window replacement job can be a breeze.If you need help with your window installation in Northern Colorado or Southern Wyoming, we can help! You can contact us today at 970-663-2868 or visit our window services page and fill out the contact form to reach out to us. Make an appointment and we will be happy to discuss your window installation project needs in detail.

What is a Composite Deck and What Are the Pros and Cons?

pic of a Composite deck built in fort collins, co

Nothing says comfortable backyard time like a lovely deck.

Over the years, more and more homeowners have opted for a pleasantly cozy deck suitable for cooling off or just hanging around. 

While wood decks are all the rage decades ago, nowadays, many homeowners are considering composite decks over traditional lumber decks.

According to a study by The Freedonia Group, the demand for decking is projected to increase at 1.3% annually. The demand paves the way for companies like TimberTech to offer high-quality decking materials.  

Nevertheless, residential renovations largely take part in this expansion. It comes as no surprise as modern composite decks are flexible and durable.

You could host a Sunday barbeque for your friends or have some good-old fashion group games. This can easily be achieved with the right deck of choice and the craftsmanship of reliable deck builders.

So, if you are contemplating the installation or renovation of your deck, stick around to find out why a composite deck could be your best choice.       

What Is a Composite Deck?

A composite deck is made of a combination of materials, primarily wood, and plastic. It is best known among homeowners as a durable alternative for lumber or traditional wood decking.

Furthermore, it requires less maintenance which makes it a convenient choice.

You may recognize a composite deck board as a wood-like material as most boards are patterned to imitate the natural looks of a traditional wood deck. But, with other materials in the mixture, it goes against the disadvantages of pure wood, such as decays, rots, and other damages.

Composite deck boards are meticulously made through a co-extrusion process where wood fibers, sawdust, and polyethylene polymers are combined under high temperatures to create a resilient and sturdy core material.

In most cases, a polymeric cap is wrapped around the core. Finally, the mixture is finished with the co-extrusion of other materials and pigments specialized in preventing damages to the deck.  

Pros of Composite Deck

The benefits of composite decking span from low maintenance requirements to a wide variety of colors and patterns you can choose from.

To top it all, composite decks come with a warranty that protects your investment.

Take a closer look at these advantages to help you decide if a composite deck is for you.

  1. Durable

Composite deck materials are designed to last for decades. The boards and rails are water and stain-resistant. And they don’t harbor molds and pests that could damage the deck.

  1. Customizable

When you go for a composite deck, you might be surprised by how flexible the materials are. You get plenty of options when it comes to designs and patterns.

Moreover, you can also combine or rearrange the patterns, especially if you’re going for tiled boards.

  1. Requires Low Maintenance

It is far easier to clean and keep a composite deck away from damages than a wood deck.

Primarily, the raw materials involved in a composite deck can sustain various damaging threats. Furthermore, the deck itself is protected from fading.

  1. Prevents Common Deck Injuries

Splintering can occur in wood decks causing injuries to your friends and family members.

During rainy days, the dangers of the deck can increase as it tends to become slippery.

In the case of a composite deck, injuries from slips or splinters can be avoided as the materials are compact and textured enough to protect you and your family.  

  1. Provides an Array of Natural Colors

If you already have a vision or an inspiration, perhaps with what you want your deck to look like, chances are you will have more success achieving that look with a composite deck.

TimberTech, for example, offers a variety of rustic choices when it comes to colors and patterns.

So, if you still want that natural wood aesthetic, you can still have it and with added benefits on the side.

  1. Sustainable and Environmentally friendly

One of the best qualities of a composite deck is that it’s ecologically sustainable.

The raw materials used in making parts of the composite deck are recyclable. Therefore, if you choose to have this type of deck, you are taking part in saving the environment.

Cons of Composite Deck

Not everything is perfect – and that includes the composite deck.

Despite its promising benefits, there are several disadvantages when you go for composite materials instead of wood.

Nonetheless, these cons are also easily mitigated by choosing the right products and deck contractor, like TNT Home Improvements of course.

Check out some of the cons you can prepare for if you plan to have a composite deck.

  1. Pricier Than Traditional Wood

Composite decking is pricier than the traditional wood deck. Mainly, the price is due to the quality and the intricate process of making the composite materials.

Nevertheless, you regain the amount you invest on a composite deck with its durability that lasts for a long time.

  1. Lacks the Natural Aesthetic of Real Wood

Several materials try to mimic the natural beauty of wood but fail to do so.

A lumber deck sanded and stained with bucolic colors is always pleasing to the eye.

Although a composite deck is only partially wood, the likelihood of still achieving the “wood-like” look is still high with the right materials. If you go for TimberTech, this won’t be a problem.   

  1. Needs Better Frame Structure

The composite deck is heavier than the wood deck. As a result, you will have to potentially add more joists to the structure, and physically moving the materials to the deck location will be that much more work.

So, if you’re planning to have a do-it-yourself project with your composite deck, it may cost you more time and energy.

You can always consult and seek the services of professional deck builders like TNT Home Improvements.

  1. Hotter Temperature

Composite materials can absorb heat, making your deck a bit hot when it’s sunny. That’s why it’s crucial to choose the right location for your composite deck.

Avoid placing it in areas hit by direct sunlight.

Another option is to talk to an expert here at TNT about a deck cover as well.

How Long Do Composite Decks Last?

Composite decks can last for 25 to 30 years. On the other hand, wood decks are known to have a lifespan of 10 to 15 years.

The longevity of composite decks is credited to the type of raw materials included in its co-extrusion process. In addition, it is highly durable, which makes it suitable for areas with harsh weather conditions.

Does a Composite Deck Get Slippery When Wet?

Composite decks are generally not slippery when wet. Or at least not as slick as a wood deck.

With TimberTech decking composite products, the materials have an anti-slip component that minimizes slipping injuries when the board is wet.

For example, its 4-sided capped composite collections are textured to mimic wood and provide a hand-scraped texture adding friction against water.

Is a Composite Deck Worth the Money?

Yes, a composite deck is worth the money you invest. You don’t simply get to have a durable and high-quality deck; you will also enjoy its textured and aesthetically pleasing look as well.

However, there are still instances wherein homeowners are disappointed by how their composite decks are built. The expectations aren’t met, and the result diminishes the comfort and fun supposedly brought by the deck.

That’s why it is of utmost importance to choose the right decking products and employ deck builders who provide nothing less than quality services.

If you’re living in the Loveland, Colorado area and looking for licensed professionals to help you renovate or build your deck, then let TNT Home Improvements come build your dream deck.

This locally-based company only uses the best decking products like TimberTech to give you a cozy and lavish-looking composite deck.

Conclusion

To build the composite deck of your dreams, don’t settle for less.

A comfortable and well-built deck can be your haven within your home, and nothing can put a price on that.

Savor the benefits of a composite deck and avoid the disadvantages by hiring professional deck builders who know the best materials in the industry.If you are located in the Northern Colorado/ Southern Wyoming area, then give us a call today at 970-663-2868 or visit the deck services page and fill out the contact form to make an appointment to discuss your next home improvement project.

What Is the Difference Between a Deck, Patio, Porch, Covered Roof, and Sunroom?

picture of a huge deck and cover built in Loveland, CO

When it comes to home improvements and additions, it helps to know the difference between some of the different options before you start hiring contractors to begin working on your property. You may want to add things that will increase the value of your property while giving you more space to do some of your favorite things, such as grilling, sunbathing, or simply relaxing outdoors.

Whether you want a deck, patio, porch, or something else added to your home, it helps to know the difference between these options before you officially pay to have anything done. So, what is the difference?

A deck is a wood framed platform that is commonly attached directly to your home. A patio is usually a cement slab in the backyard right up against the house. A porch is most commonly a covered deck with screens for walls. A Covered Roof (or sometimes referred to as a hard cover) is a shade covering for a deck or concrete patio and is commonly made from the same roofing materials as the house. And lastly, a sunroom is similar to a porch except made from as much glass as possible.

pic of a wood deck built in Loveland featuring built in seating and lighting

What Is a Deck?

A deck is a structure composed of wood that does not have a roof attached to it. As a homeowner, you can get a deck installed on any specific area of your home. Some people like to have a deck in their backyard, while others prefer having a deck that is off to the side of the property. It all depends on the location of your home and the amount of space you have available to get this type of addition constructed.

Decks come in all different sizes and shapes. Before getting a deck installed, you would need to have measurements taken to determine how much space you have available to work with in the first place. You may want a large deck to have plenty of room for a grill and chairs that you will have out for guests to sit on when they visit you. In addition to getting a deck that is the perfect size for your personal space, you will also need to decide on the shape, style, and color of the deck.

You can have a deck built with different types of materials. While wood is the most common goto for decking, decks made from wood-plastic composite have become extremely popular. No matter what you plan on choosing, you will need to decide on the species of wood that you would like used based on its longevity and general appearance. You want something that is going to look good and last a long time while not requiring nearly as much maintenance as some other options.

What Is a Patio?

Many people often confuse a patio with a deck or porch, but these are three entirely different things. While the patio is an outdoor area like a porch and deck, it is typically a paved area that is outside of the home and not attached to it. When constructing patios for clients, it is common for contractors to use concrete, bricks, and even assorted stones that were selected by the clients.

The purpose of having a patio is to have an outdoor area where you can sit, eat, and relax. Many people with patios like to host parties and gatherings with their loved ones where they are preparing food and serving it outdoors. Once there is the patio, homeowners may invest in items for those patios, including outdoor furniture, that they can leave outside and use whenever they want to sit outdoors.

Not all patios look the same, and some are much bigger than others. It does depend on the space available to the homeowner. One thing that most patios have in common is that they are found in the back of the home and may even be situated near a deck.

What Is a Porch?

The porch is an open structure that has breathable walls, but protection above it. Because there is a cover or roof above the porch, you can comfortably sit outside in any weather without worrying about dealing with the rain, sun, snow, and other elements. The porch is often added to the front of the home. There are several reasons that homeowners choose to get a front porch installed if they do not already have one. It gives them a safe and comfortable place to sit out while enjoying the weather and chatting with their neighbors.

There are different types of materials used to create sturdy and reliable porches for those who would like them. Some of the most commonly selected porch materials include plastic, PVC, wood, aluminum, and solid stone. The materials, colors, and overall style picked for the porch will vary from one home to the next and will typically depend on the personal preference of the homeowners.

You can choose from various porch options. For example, you may want an open-air porch that does not have walls, or you may prefer having a porch with screened walls. These are some of the things you will need to think about before you get this type of addition to your home.

covered deck shingled roof stone pillars all covering a hot tub

What Is a Covered Roof?

A covered roof often goes along with a patio. While patios are usually out in the open and provide a space for dining and relaxing with friends, some people choose to invest in a covered roof that gets installed directly over the patio. Having a covered roof comes in handy for potential rainstorms and other weather elements that could get in the way of an outdoor event. The closed roof also provides additional protection from the sun when sitting outside for extended periods.

Before getting a covered roof installed over the patio, professionals must first take measurements. It is necessary to make sure that the roof will provide the maximum amount of coverage for the patio. If you are thinking about getting a covered roof, you must also decide how much coverage you want. Some people like to have a portion of the patio covered while leaving a separate part open because that allows them to soak in the sun if they would like to do so.

What Is a Sunroom?

The sunroom is a sheltered room that is attached to the home. It is an added room to the house that has more windows than the average room, allowing plenty of natural sunlight to soak through. Property owners often like adding assorted plants to their sunrooms because that is the perfect room to get plants to thrive because of the added sunlight. Those who want to enjoy the benefits of the sun without sitting directly outside where they would end up dealing with insects may enjoy having a sunroom available to them.

Sunrooms are often smaller than the average size of a living room or bedroom, but they still offer an adequate amount of space. While the location of a sunroom may vary from one home to the next, it is common for homeowners to have a sunroom attached to the back of the house. There is a common misconception that a sunroom and back porch are the same thing, but this is false. These two home features are different from one another.

It is quite common for people to confuse decks, patios, porches, covered roofs, and sunrooms. Many people believe these home additions are all the same, but that is the furthest thing from the truth. Each addition has something unique to offer. If you are thinking about adding something extra to your home, you should make a list of your wants and needs and then decide which of these different options are the best for you.

Once you decide which additions to add to your home, you can start choosing materials, styles, and colors. You can go over these details with a professional contractor by giving us a call today at 970-663-2868 or visit the contact page to send us a message. Also, if you want more info please check out our DECK and PATIO COVER services pages.

timber frame sun-room with amazing mountain views built by TNT Home Improvements