ABC Blog

Can Power Washing Damage Concrete?

Power washing tips

One of the most satisfying, but time-consuming, outdoor tasks you can take on is power washing your driveway and walkways. While you know that using a power washer can almost magically erase built-up dirt, debris and stains from practically any surface, you might wonder: Can power washing damage concrete?

The quick answer is yes, power washing can degrade a concrete surface.

You can notice visible damage from water pressure at the level at which even light-duty power washers can operate. Therefore, if you aren’t careful, you can cause irreversible damage to your driveway or patio. Also, some concrete is weaker than others, making some areas more vulnerable to developing lines, pitting or other surface imperfections, not to mention the deterioration to joints if mortar or joint sand is washed away during the process.

The top reasons for pressure washing damage are using the wrong nozzle, excessive pressure, spraying too close to a concrete … Read Full Post »

How To Vacuum A Pool Using A Skimmer

How to vacuum a pool using skimmer

Most pool owners keep their chemicals balanced and use a hand skimmer when necessary to fish out leaves, twigs and other yard waste. But sometimes, big storms can bring all sorts of dirt and debris that can end up in a pool.

After one of these major weather events, or even after an infestation of algae, you may hope that your skimmer system can get your pool water clean again. But what if a few days go by, and it isn’t happening? Does this mean it’s time to manually vacuum your pool?

If you want to clean the bottom of your pool using your skimmer, you’ll need to gather the following materials:

  • A vacuum head—otherwise known as a vac head.
  • A telescopic pole that is long enough to reach even the deepest parts of your pool.
  • A vacuum hose that also can reach every part of your swimming pool.

You may want to use a skimmer … Read Full Post »

AC Unit Fan Not Spinning: What Should I Do?

AC Unit Fan Not Spinning

Air conditioning is a way of life in the southern parts of the U.S. for at least half the year. The price we pay for our mild winters is that we basically skip spring and head straight into summer. That’s why it is so troubling to come home and be hit with a blast of lukewarm air, especially when upon closer inspection, you discover your AC unit fan is not spinning.

Your air conditioner’s fan is usually located in your outside unit. The fan pulls in hot air and delivers it over your condenser coil, where the air cools to your desired temperature and can then be pumped into your home. While your fan can stop spinning for a number of reasons, in most cases, the resolution is not a simple DIY fix. Because of the complexity of air conditioning systems, the dangers of working with electricity and the simple fact … Read Full Post »

Outside AC Unit Not Running But Inside Is: What’s Going On?

Outside AC unit not running but inside is

Maybe you finally bit the bullet and turned your air conditioner on, or maybe you’ve been running your AC for weeks now. Either way, to your surprise, something is not quite right. Despite hearing the sound of the AC turning on, your house is not cooling down as it used to. After some investigating, you determine that your outside AC unit isn’t running but the inside is.

Typically, this means one of two things: your outside AC hums but the fan doesn’t spin or the entire outside AC unit isn’t working at all. What could be causing either of these problems, and, more importantly, what can you do about it? In this post, we’ll go into detail about some scenarios you may run across with your air conditioner and how your components work together to create a comfortable, cool indoor living environment.

Air Conditioner Outside Unit Fan Not Working

Maybe you notice that … Read Full Post »

Is There A Best Time To Run A Pool Pump In Summer?

You finally did it—you got a pool installed in your backyard. And you were incredibly glad you did, since it’s a nice way to cool off at the end of a long day. Then, your power bill came and your jaw dropped. You had run the pool pump all day, every day, and now you’re wondering: When is the best time to run a pool pump in the summer?

Like some questions, the answer isn’t entirely straightforward. Depending on your situation, you could choose to run your pump at night only, you may decide to switch to a different sized component to save money or you could find that running your pump all day long is preferible.

Homeowners want to do what’s right and keep their pools pristine, but they often don’t quite realize what they’re getting into, or ways to cut costs while still maintaining your pool. Let’s explore how to … Read Full Post »

Fleas In House, No Pets: Why Do I Have A Problem?

Fleas in house no pets

If you think that you can only have fleas in your home if you have a dog or a cat, you aren’t alone. Contrary to this common misconception, although flea infestations are more common if you have a dog or a cat, these parasites can make their way inside on any type of fabric—which includes any piece of clothing on your body or any item you may bring inside your house that has been in an infested area.

If you have grass in your front or back yard, these tiny parasites can hitch a ride with you or a guest into your home. Fleas could also enter your living spaces if you return from a friend’s house with a flea problem which has yet to be discovered. Another possibility is that a wild animal with fleas, such as an opossum, feral cat, skunk or raccoon, may have taken up residence without … Read Full Post »

Does Lavender Really Repel Bed Bugs?

Does lavender really repel bed bugs

Waking up in the morning to find yourself covered in itchy, irritated red bumps is a shocking experience. If the bumps are situated in lines along your skin instead of in more random clusters, you might be even more concerned, as that is a common bite pattern associated with bed bugs. Instantly, you may wonder if these unwelcome pests are infesting your mattress or other areas of your home. If you’ve ever heard about natural repellents alleged to be effective in controlling these insects, you might wonder, does lavender really repel bed bugs?

Unfortunately, lavender is not an effective method to keep bed bugs away. Public health officials recognize the significant psychological toll an infestation can have and advise against DIY bed bug control methods and in favor of enlisting an experienced pest professional to deal with the problem. In order to completely eliminate bed bugs from your home, entomologists recommend … Read Full Post »

How Long Do Garbage Disposals Last: Appliance Repair 101

how long do garbage disposals last

Garbage disposals are the backbone of your kitchen. These electric powerhouses shred away food waste within a matter of seconds, making clean up a much easier-to-complete task. But if these machines are so important, why do many of us go blank when someone asks “how long do garbage disposals last?” And what should we do if we wake up one morning to find puddles of water under the sink? Or perhaps even worse, what if our garbage disposal was not working with no noise at all indicating that you flipped the switch to the “On” position?

While garbage disposals are part of our daily routine, their operation remains foreign to many of us. This not only makes garbage disposal troubleshooting difficult, but also can make it harder to know how to properly care for and maintain this important kitchen appliance.

If you came to this post to find out how long disposals last, … Read Full Post »

AC Compressor Not Working: What’s Going On?

AC Compressor Not Working

It’s a hot day, and you’ve just returned home after a long afternoon out in the grueling Texas heat. The first thing you probably want to do is plop yourself down on the living room sofa and enjoy a refreshing rush of cold air. Except that today, of all days, you realize that something seems to be wrong with your air conditioner. How could this be? You hear the machine powering on and the familiar sound of air whirring through the system. Maybe it’s because of your AC compressor not working or another component that’s broken. Perhaps it’s another problem entirely.

Understanding how HVAC systems work can help you diagnose the problem you are having and determine what to do next. In this blog post, we’ll explain some of the common air conditioner problems, including why your air conditioner compressor might be turning on, but not cooling, and why an important part of … Read Full Post »

Garbage Disposal Humming: Quick Fix Or Big Problem?

Garbage Disposal Humming

We tend not to think much about our appliances. That is, until something goes wrong.

One evening, as you are going about your normal routine, you scrape your leftover food from your dinner plate, turn on the disposal and wait for that familiar and gratifying noise of food heading down your garbage disposal.

But something’s not quite right. What’s that humming sound? There’s supposed to be roaring. Grinding. Not a soft little purr.

But that’s all you’re getting.

What does it mean? Is there some kind of quick fix? Or is your disposal ruined?

We rely on our garbage disposals after pretty much every meal. We expect these appliances to take whatever we throw at them and keep on going, even when you don’t notice and a spoon slips down your drain or your children put eggshells in the garbage disposal.

Unfortunately, these kinds of common plumbing mistakes—as well as just general wear and tear—can cause … Read Full Post »