Posts Tagged ‘backyard’
There are many potential outdoor safety hazards around your home. Playground and pool safety are two areas of concern most homeowners are well aware of, but everyone also needs to watch out for hazards associated with gas grills.
Here are some tips to make sure your family and friends have a safe outdoor experience:
- Regularly check the condition of playground equipment for rusted, rotted, loose or otherwise damaged components or sharp edges.
- Make sure playground equipment is age appropriate. Provide suitable supervision.
- Ensure that there is a soft, hazard-free surface under and around all playground equipment. At least 9 inches of a base material extending out six feet is advised.
- Avoid using swings and other moving components that present a higher risk of injury.
- Check for entrapment hazards from gaps in the equipment that are either too small or “v-shaped,” which could allow a child or child’s clothing to get trapped or caught, causing strangulation. Also remove any damaged or loose hanging ropes.
- Make sure rails on elevated areas are secure and not spaced too far apart presenting a fall hazard, or too close together causing an entrapment hazard.
- Provide constant supervision of children around any pools or other bodies of water; but also be aware of the hazards of adults swimming alone. Keep lifesaving devices readily available.
- Make sure the pool is surrounded by a suitable fence and gate. Install child-resistant latches and water alarms.
- Make sure all electrical components are installed to code and in good condition. Do not allow the use of any electric-powered devices around the pool.
- Gasoline and propane should only be stored outside in approved containers in good condition.
- Make sure the gas grill is on a level surface and all components are in good condition. Check periodically for loose or damaged burners, grates, handles, and hinges.
- Separate the grilling area from the eating or play areas and make sure the grill has adequate clearance from trees and shrubs, deck railings and the house. A grill can get hot enough to melt vinyl siding even several feet away.
- Check the gas lines for leaks each time a new tank is installed. Do not attempt to light burners or strike a match if the odor of gas is present.
- Turn off the gas valve on the tank after every use.
- Bugs can take up residence in the gas burner components, especially if the grill has not been used for a while, blocking or upsetting the gas flow and creating a fire and/or burn hazard. Be particularly cautious if there are spider webs and other insect activity in the area of the grill.
- Do not allow children to use a grill and make sure children are kept away from the grill area until it has cooled down.
Every homeowner may have a different reason for adding a gazebo to their backyard. Gazebo additions are often used as a kind of covered patio area that allows you to enjoy the natural setting of your yard away from your house. If you have a gardening interest, a gazebo can act as a permanent structure that helps define the garden (known as a garden bone). For general landscaping purposes, a gazebo addition will serve as a more beautifying object than a patio or deck. A deck gazebo can add a feeling of elegance to your deck installation. For outdoor parties, they will give you a covered area to set up a buffet table or an extra gathering area for guests. They are also perfect for more formal events like weddings or receptions after religious ceremonies. But, whatever the intended use, the best gazebo addition is as beautiful as it is functional, as romantic as it is valuable, to your home, your yard, and your life.
Five Keys for the Best Possible Gazebo Installation
- Gazebo Addition Placement: You might think you want to place your gazebo in the middle of your yard for decorative balance but, the best place for a gazebo is usually near other landscaping features. This can include more than just gardens. Gazebos work especially nice near water, whether you want to enjoy the trickling sound of your outdoor pond or watch the kids in your backyard pool.
- Gazebo Installation Dimensions: The size of your gazebo is usually a combination of decorative balance, budget, and purpose. A smaller gazebo will be more intimate but may reduce the options for its use when you have guests over to your home. A larger gazebo will allow more people to enjoy the structure but can also overwhelm your backyard landscaping and your pockets. Gazebo builders will have seen every size gazebo for every type and size of your yard. Sometimes it’s hard to imagine how a gazebo will look until it’s built without an experienced eye to help guide you.
- Finding a Builder for Gazebo Construction: Hiring a gazebo builder is the best way to ensure you get exactly what you want and need from your gazebo. You probably don’t realize just how many options you have for your gazebo installation. A gazebo builder will be able to help advise you on the place, size and kind of gazebo that’s right for you.
- Gazebo Construction Materials: Wood gazebo installation is the most traditional and still the most popular. Given that a large part of a gazebo’s appeal is the warmth and elegance it brings to a landscape, wood is hard to beat as a gazebo construction material. The one major drawback is maintenance: You’ll need to guard against rot, termites, and other wood-damaging pests. Aluminum gazebo installations do away with much of this maintenance. As faux wood finishes continue to improve, aluminum gazebos are beginning to catch on, but even these gazebos are far from indestructible: Make sure your gazebo meets the building requirements for wind storms and other local weathering conditions. Finally, vinyl gazebos are a nice compromise between aluminum and wood. Vinyl has similar maintenance-free qualities to aluminum and may provide a better texture than aluminum.
- Gazebo Construction Costs: The cost of adding a gazebo to the yard is usually the first question a homeowner will ask. Unfortunately, it’s also one of the more difficult questions to answer. No surprise there, right? Well, we can tell you the average cost of gazebo construction from data compiled from homeowners across the country who completed a gazebo project with one of our contractors. Our data shows this average is $10,667. You should know, however, that these figures often reflect the tough, economic decisions that homeowners must make more than the cost to build the “average” backyard gazebo. The only way to truly gauge how much your gazebo addition is going to cost is to solicit estimate along with a handful specifications to a local gazebo builder.