Make your home a safe haven for trick-or-treaters by welcoming all the cleverly costumed kids with a well lighted front door entry. Add decorations to make it pretty or spooky – however you want – with pumpkins, scary creatures and jack-o-lanters, and provide safe footing so you can easily fill their bags with goodies.
It only happens one night a year so make it special for the kids with a basket full of candy or healthy treats. You may want to get in the spirit too and dress up yourself!
The American Academy of Pediatrics has some suggestions for a safe holiday.
**Costumes that are bright and reflective will keep kids visible even on the darkest night. **Use reflective tapes so they’re easy to see.
**Masks can block eyesight so think about using non-toxic makeup instead.
**If you’re buying a costume, choose one with a label clearly indicating it is flame retardant.
**Give kids a small flashlight to carry
Visit www.diyornot.com to compare the cost of hundreds of home improvement projects and decide to hire a contractor or do it yourself.
Let’s face it – charging cell phones, e-readers, digital cameras and other electronic devices is a part of everyday life, so why not make it easy with a charger installed in a wall where it’s conveniently located? We found a two-port device by Leviton that fits in a standard outlet that features a smart chip that recognizes and optimizes the charging power of devices for fast and efficient charging.
This device eliminates the tangle of charging cords and clutter on a kitchen counter or desk and can be installed by a handy do-it-yourselfer or by an electrician. Your decision is where to make the swap from a standard outlet that’s located in a convenient location with a counter, shelf or cabinet where you can leave the devices while charging. If you have a lot of devices to power up consider getting a USB charger with four ports.
To install a two-port USB charger an electrician will charge $100 which includes the labor and the device. If you have experience working with electrical projects and electrical tools you can buy the device for $25 and install it, and save 75 percent. You’ll find the devices sold at home centers and online.
Before you begin read the manufacturer’s directions thoroughly and turn off the source of power at the electric panel.
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We begin October with the redesign of www.diyornot.com that’s responsive to three devices – laptop, tablet and smartphone – to make it more user friendly. We hope visitors find that the new adjustable screen makes using the job cost figures easy to navigate and useful.
On another note, the weather is changing in some parts of the country so it’s a good idea to walk around your house inside and out and observe and inspect. Use these 13 suggestions to keep your house and all its systems working at peak performance.
*Replace filters or wash permanent ones in heating system
*Change batteries in carbon monoxide and smoke detectors
*Reset programmable thermostat
*Clean and inspect gutters and downspouts
*Clean and store outdoor furniture and decorations
*Wash window glass, frames and sill
*Clean out weep-holes in sliders and change screen to storm panel
*Wash storm door frame and replace storm panels
*Remove portable air conditioner unit
*Clean and store lawn equipment and tools
*Winterize sprinkler system and drain and turn off outdoor water spigots
*Plant spring flowering bulbs
*Clean up fallen leaves, pine needles etc. from lawn and garden beds, build up soil with slow-release fertilizer and mulch plants for winter protection
Visit us at www.diyornot.com to compare the cost of doing it yourself with hiring a contractor for hundreds of home repair, improvement, decorating and gardening jobs.