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Steel Pipes: Because Tap Water Should Taste Fresh

steel pipeFresh-tasting drinking water is barely a problem in the United States. As a matter fact, America has one of the best public water systems on the planet. Unlike in Third World countries, you have the luxury of gulping the very same water you use to wash the dishes.

Despite this, tap water is still subject to contaminants. Hence, the quality of water may become compromised. This is a serious cause for concern, as it clearly puts your family’s health at risk. With so much at stake, it only pays to do what’s necessary and keep your drinking water safe always.

Steel over Plastic

A study revealed that plastic pipes may affect the taste and odor of drinking water. While researchers are yet to confirm if the water running through a plastic pipe work become less safer or healthier, it’s hard to think nothing bad is going to happen in drinking water with a distinct flavor and stinky smell.

Plastic may be the less costly piping material, but going for steel to keep your family’s health in check makes sense. Any expert in hydraulic steel tubing and high-strength pipes would tell you that this specialized alloy is made for plumbing. The surface of steel doesn’t breed bacteria and particle buildup easily, preventing water contamination at home.

Pollution and Wearing Pipes

Pollutants can spoil clean water supply on its way to your home. Even if it tests positive at its source, certain harmful organisms present in the environment can render public water unsafe while it travels along the pipeline.

In addition, the rust produced by deteriorating pipes can turn your tap water taste metallic and colored reddish brown. While it’s not primarily a health concern, it may harm people living with hemochromatosis—a rare condition wherein excess iron amasses in a person’s body organs. Pipe restoration is paramount to avoid all these possible risks.

The tap water’s taste may not have a direct link to our health thus far, but drinking fresh is the easiest way to gain some peace of mind. Installing steel pipes and making timely replacements are necessary to have tap water of good quality.

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Is Artificial Grass any Good?

grassLet’s face it: not all areas in your home enjoy the ideal condition for the optimal growth of lawn grass. Add the frequently uncooperative weather in the UK and you would see that it can be quite tricky to keep your grass green.

This is why many have explored the use of artificial grass in a lawn. But before you scoff at the idea of artificial grass in your home, you should know that the synthetic material is actually a good choice for different reasons.

Easier maintenance

One of the main benefits to having artificial grass is the minimal maintenance work necessary to preserve its appeal. Contrary to real grass, the artificial kind does not need all the mowing, trimming, or watering. You can simply install artificial grass in your home and leave it be whilst you have fun elsewhere. Rest assured that when you come home, your lawn would remain as verdant as you left it.

Better flexibility

Landscape gardeners in Essex would probably agree that the best edge of artificial grass its inherent flexibility. Artificial grass can exist in places where real greens can’t. Rooftop gardens, for example, would require that the structure is capable of supporting the weight of all the soil, water, and grass for it to work. Contrast this with the idea of artificial grass, wherein you would simply install it and you would have an instant green patch on your rooftop.

More savings

Although the initial cost might surprise you a little, faux grass is actually worth the investment. Think about this: investing in artificial grass is a one-time thing. Once the landscapers install the grass in your home, there’s no need to contact the exterminator regularly or purchase fertilisers. Over time, you get to recoup what you paid for in the form of savings.

Fake grass isn’t all that bad. As a matter of fact, it has its good points. When you want a flexible, cost-efficient alternative to your home’s green patch, consider this as one of your options.

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From Fast to Faster: The Wonders of Bike Fitting

bikingBike fitting is as old as time. In the beginning, though, as long as you could stand over a bicycle, then it fits; but this is not the approach anymore. The term now means the science of synchronising the rider and the bike for optimal performance.

Just because you can ride the bike and move fast it doesn’t mean you’re doing it right. As an exhausting pursuit, it sure does make you sweat, but not suffer. Cycling should be effortless and pain-free; if you’re experiencing discomfort as you pedal, then it’s a sign you need to visit a bike store because something is wrong.

Chances are you would not think you need to fit your bike until you realise its significant benefits.

Unveil Hidden Problems

An innovative bike fitting system can reveal the secrets why certain parts of your body ache while cycling. Whether your back, neck, bum, knees, or hands hurt, chances are the components of your bicycle is not proportionate to your body. Having the stem or the saddle one inch higher or lowerA single than it’s supposed to be is enough to make life miserable for you. An assessment is necessary to determine the right measurements of bike parts that suit your physique.

Small Adjustments, Big Improvements

The shoes, cleats and insoles are the minor stuff that matter. They provide ample support and balance the pressure on your feet for hours of pedaling. The experts would recommend the gear that matches the size and shape of your foot to prevent hot foot, or Metatarsalgia, and ride your bike over long stretches with ease.

Ultimate Potential

In cycling, proper positioning is the key to reach the peak of your speed and stamina. Riding the bike in comfort and pedaling with efficiency are only achievable if you’re on a bicycle that suits your frame. Triathletes, especially, require a fitted bike to compete at the highest level.

In the words of Ivan Illich in his essay, Energy and Equity, “Man on a bicycle can go three or four times faster than the pedestrian, but uses five times less energy in the process.” Indeed, the bicycle is the most efficient vehicle that has ever been created. With proper adjustments, going from fast to faster is a breeze.

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4 Things You Need to Do First When a Pipe Bursts

fixing a leakYou wake up in the middle of the night to the sound of flowing water. When you investigate, your worst fears are confirmed: a pipe has burst, spewing water everywhere.

The above scenario is one of a homeowner’s worst nightmares, and the damage it causes is immense. Apart from driving up your water bill and forcing repairs, it can also result in significant water damage and mould growth if you do not act quickly. And in a country like Australia, where water is scarce enough as it is, you need to do everything you can to minimise waste.

Thankfully, responding to this problem isn’t too difficult. The most important thing is to have a plan before it happens, and responding quickly when it does. Here are the first five things you need to do.

1. Turn off the water supply – Make sure that you and everyone in your family knows how to shut off your home’s main water supply. This will prevent the problem from getting much worse.

2. Turn off electricity – Depending on the amount of water and the location of the burst pipe, it may be necessary to cut off power to the affected areas, especially if the water reaches ceiling light fixtures. Be very careful when entering a room with a burst pipe, and assume that it is dangerous until proven otherwise.

3. Call for help – Now that you’ve stopped the situation from turning into a catastrophe, it’s time to call a plumber. Most Perth plumbing services offer emergency repairs, and you can contact them at any time of the day (or night). They can help you repair or replace the damaged pipe, and inspect the other parts of your system to see if anything else is at risk.

4. Contact your insurance company – Finally, it’s time to take inventory of the damage, call your insurance company, and then process your claim. Practically all home insurance policies cover water damage from burst pipes, though you should read your policy to be sure. Getting a statement from your plumber and pictures of the damaged area will also help.

Properly insulating your pipes and regularly checking for damage will prevent them from bursting, but you should know what you have to do when it happens.

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Spending Money to Make Money: Best Advertising Options for Small Businesses

online marketing servicesAdvertising doesn’t have to be expensive; rather, spending too much on it could cripple operations. While your business is still in its growing stage, it’s important that you maximise every dollar that goes into promoting your products and services. Here are some advertising options that provide excellent return on investment.

1. Online Advertising and Marketing – First on the list is one of humanity’s greatest inventions: the Internet. Always cost effective and sometimes even free, advertising on the Internet nonetheless requires you to be somewhat tech savvy, unless you ask professional online marketing services to do the heavy lifting for you.

Regardless of how you achieve it, however, an online presence is pretty much a requirement for just about every business. Big or small, local or international, everyone benefits from a good website and tons of interested leads.

2. Newspaper advertising – Print advertising is far from dead. Many people still look at the classified ads, especially adults in their 30s and above. If you think your target market enjoys sitting down with the morning paper and a hot cup of coffee, then this is a very cost effective option. Of course, this requires you to understand the target demographics of your local newspapers for maximum effectiveness.

3. Flyers – Don’t disregard the potential of the humble flyer. Incredibly cheap to mass produce, easy to place just about anywhere, and provides your information on an easy to take home slip of paper. Their potential return on investment is incredible. Using flyers effectively, however, depends on a few things.

  • Design Your flyer must be eye catching, otherwise most of them will end up in the trash without a second glance.
  • Writing – Good flyers have a great headline, easy to understand value proposition, and complete contact details.
  • Placement Get creative! Put them under windshield wipers, work out a deal with the local grocery store to include them in shopping bags, give some to local organisations related to your business. The possibilities are nearly endless.

4. Attending gatherings – There are always various events going on that you can participate in. Trade shows, community projects, and fundraisers – these are great ways to become well known in your local community, while building business connections and getting leads.

5. Vehicle Advertising – You can’t drive for five minutes without seeing a car, truck, or van emblazoned with a company logo and slogan. This is an incredibly cost effective form of advertising; you only need to pay for the printing and installation. In return, your company vehicles become mobile advertisements, maximising the benefits of every trip they make.

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Creative Garden Fence Decorations

garden fencingThe backyard is where you bring your gardening ideas to life. However, your creativity needs not stop at the plant selection and landscaping aspects. Whoever said that garden decorations should be limited to the greenery that you plant?

One part of the garden that can be tapped as a creative canvass for your artistic designs is the fence. With a few recycled items and an imagination let loose, you can create a personal masterpiece right in your own backyard.

Here are some ideas from AmazingFences.com.au when designing your garden fences:

Pot plants – While on the topic of garden fences, no design would be complete without incorporating plants into them. Small flower pots with lush flowers hung on fences are good accentuations.

Rain boots – Rain boots in different sizes and colours can add a fun dimension to your garden. You can hang them off the sides of your garden fence and fill them with soil to plant decorative plants in them.

Bottles – Another item that can be turned into makeshift flower pots are bottles. Even jars can be hung around the fence to grow ornamental plants in.

Mural – Instead of painting your fence, you may want to paint a mural instead. It is a good way to keep things fun, especially if you have kids who can stamp their own input on the project.

Picture frames – You can use picture frames on your fences to come up with fun, artsy designs. You do not necessarily have to put pictures in them, as long as you colour coordinate them with your garden.

Lights – Who says decorative lights are just for Christmas? By accentuating your garden fences with bright lights, you can add a fairy-ish or pixie-like feel during the night.

Trellis – What makes this idea so good is that you can grow flowing plants to add a natural design to your fence.

Let your creative juices flow and stretch your artistic nerves. It is your fence, and you should decorate it how you want to. Keep these ideas in mind you can even spruce them up and add your own modifications.

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SQL Server Performance Tuning: How to Do It Right

sql server performance tuningIt’s easy to get lost when creating a database. You may not realise it now, but you may have put in a troublesome code that made things slow down.

Health check and performance tuning is challenging; it’s a fact. You need to have experience and expertise to execute the task properly. If you’re not confident, you can always hire an SQL expert to teach you and handle it for the meantime. Find someone who knows Database Development and Administration like the back of his or her hand.

Experts like DBAServices.com.au know that SQL server performance tuning is important to prevent the onset of problems that can be difficult to solve later on. Here’s a quick look at what else you need to know about the same:

Smooth and Easy

To keep your SQL server’s health in optimal condition, you need to keep it running smoothly and avoid making errors. Here are some quick pointers to keep in mind:

- Review the server’s SQL Instance Level settings and tune it with the system workload in mind
- Analyse the system’s I/O and evaluate which distribution method is best for I/O load
- Accomplish an object level analysis and table level tuning for the I/O
- Reduce bottlenecks by suggesting the use of optimal settings for read and write database

Doing these things will help even the busiest databases endure heavy updates during peak hours.

Resource Wait Stats Analysis

Most people overlook Wait Stat Analysis because they lack knowledge about it. What they don’t realise is that it’s essential to keep the database optimised. Here are some Wait Stat Analysis procedures you need to perform to diminish performance bottleneck:

- Index Analysis
- Log Review
- Hardware Review
- TempDB Space Review
- Fragmentation and Defragmentation
- Backup and Recovery Health Check

A fast SQL server has many benefits, but it really takes a lot to achieve it. Don’t hesitate to ask for expert assistance regarding performance tuning, especially if you’re just an SQL newbie. Read, take down notes, and ask questions to learn tips and tricks on resolving deadlocks.

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On the Honour Role: 3 Essential Tips to Become a Better Educator

teachersEquipping people with the right skills and competencies is one of the most rewarding and admired professions. Respected as the job may be, some educators become complacent and don’t give much thought to pursuing further education.

It’s not just classroom teachers who need to develop themselves—parents, trainers, assessors, coaches, and anyone who passes down information to others also need to strive to be better.

Here are some of the essential tips to becoming a better educator, regardless of the field you are in:

Be Patient with Your Students

No matter how many mistakes your students make or how many times you need to explain a particular lesson, remember to always practice patience. This does not only benefit the learner, but you as a teacher as well. Unruly students are difficult to deal with, but patience will help you help students reach their maximum potential.

Become an Eager Learner

No person knows everything, but you, as an educator, can strive to learn more about your area of expertise. If you want to become a better teacher or trainer, you need to be equipped with the skills you want to impart to students. Pursuing and earning a Certificate IV in Training and Assessment, for example, proves to vocational students that you truly possess knowledge in the field. This will make them respect you more as an educator.

Make Yourself Accessible and Approachable

You want to be the educator people flock to, not one people run away from. You want to become a go-to resource. The best thing to do is to always smile, as it makes you look more approachable. When you smile a lot, your students will start to like you—and that’s when learning starts.

Have a broader vision, anticipate, and adapt to trends. Remember that you are preparing the students not for the world as it is today, but for the one they will inherit someday. While teaching sometimes comes naturally for some people, others have to work hard and put so much effort to become a better teacher. Even so, the payoff is great—for both you and your students.

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Aluminium vs. Steel Fencing: Which is the Better Option?

steel fencingAluminium and steel are two of the best materials ideal for building gates and fences. While both materials are durable, you need to think about the layout of your house and factor in specific needs to choose the most appropriate material.

Read on to learn more about the pros and cons of each:

Aluminium

Aluminium is a durable and lightweight material, and is resistant to corrosion. According to fencing NSW companies, aluminium fences can be coated for additional durability. Compared to steel, aluminium is more affordable and easier to install. This makes it an ideal fencing material for beachside homes or houses in locations that see regular and heavy rainfall.

The only drawback of this material is that is weaker and can be bent more easily than steel. It is not an effective fencing material for establishments that require tough security. Aluminium is best used for garden, yard, or pool fencing.

Steel

Steel is a long-lasting fencing material that is resistant to extreme weather damage. Steel fences are usually galvanised and coated to avoid rusting. Another good thing about this material is that it is impact resistant, making it the best material for properties that require high levels of security.

As steel fencing is heavier and more difficult to install, it is more expensive than aluminium fences. It is also less practical for home use and a much better fit for commercial and industrial premises. If budget is not a concern for you, however, steel fences can be a great addition to your property.

Which is the Better Option?

Each material has its own advantages and disadvantages. As mentioned above, aluminium is a practical choice for your home exteriors while steel is more appropriate for commercial premises. Aluminium is the best material for residential fencing, as it affordable, lightweight, and easy to install. Steel fencing, however, is a much better choice for industrial and commercial setting because of its strength and greater durability.

Always think about its main use when choosing a fencing material. If you want an ornamental fence, aluminium is the perfect option. It is an excellent material for dividing properties or keeping pets out of the pool and yard. If you want a sturdy fence that can stand up to harsh weather and years of use, steel is the better option.

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Tips on Fertilising or Watering Your Lawn

watering your lawnThe exterior of the house is as essential as the other portions of the structure. It plays a significant role in enhancing the appearance and value of their homes. When you talk about exterior landscaping, lawns are one of the priorities of most households.

The lawn provides its best function when it is well-kept regularly. According to Allenview Turf, “Regular maintenance and repair is one of the significant aspects in making sure that your grass is in great quality. It allows your lawn grass to grow healthily, eliminate potential threats in the environment, and extend its shelf life.”

Here are three tips on using fertilisers or water on the grass in your yard:

Don’t Drown the Soil

During summer, the heat of the sun causes the leaves to turn brown. It may look dead, but the roots underneath are still alive can remain inactive for months. Watering is one of the ways to maintain the lawn.

If you want to maintain your green lawn all season-long, then water it deeply but infrequently. An hour per week or two of watering is sufficient to make the soil wet enough for the roots to dig deeper.

Not Too Much, Just the Right Amount

Fertilisers are a big boost for plants as these escalate the growth of the lawn. Nourishing the grass repeatedly, though, can cause irregular growth – making plants more prone to diseases and swarm of insects. Use it only once during autumn. Why on fall season?

The cold air during the transition to winter slows and stops the growth of the grass. By applying an adequate amount of fertiliser, the grass roots can outlast the humid season and support a green lawn for the following seasons.

Check the Chemical Level

It is advisable to use fertilisers that are low in nitrogen. Most commercialised plant stimulants contain massive amounts of nitrogen than can cause fast growth and weaker resistance to drought and disease. Check the packaging of the fertilisers for the percentage of nitrogen. Usually you can find it in the leftmost part of the three-number sequence. The highest you can apply is 10 per cent.

Lawn maintenance can be quite time-consuming, but achieving the best condition and look of your landscape can definitely give your house a boost. Just follow the easy steps and you’ll surely find yourself enjoying that soft texture of your lawn.

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