How to Grow Japanese Red Maple Trees?

Japanese Red Maple TreesMost Japanese Maple seeds ripen within the fall. Watch the tree and watch for the seeds to show brown. The seeds square measure able to be harvested once they square measure brown and may be simply faraway from the tree.

The seeds are attached to a wing, it’s best to break the wing off before storing or planting the seeds. Japanese Maple seeds have a very hard outer coating as do many ornamental plants. Under natural conditions the seeds would have to be on the ground for almost two years before they would germinate. All that happens the first winter is the moisture softens the hard outer shell, and the second winter germination is beginning to take place.

In order for all of this to happen in the proper sequence so the seedlings actually sprout at a time of the year when freezing temperatures or hot summer sun doesn’t kill them, takes a tremendous amount of luck.

You can improve the odds by controlling some of these conditions, and shorten the cycle. Once you have picked the seeds and removed the wing just place them in a paper bag and store them in a cool dry place until you are ready for them. You don’t want to plant your seeds out in the spring until the danger of frost has past, here in the north May 15th is a safe bet.

If May 15th is your target date you should count backwards on the calendar 100 days. That will take you to about February 5th if my math is correct. On or about the 100th day prior to your target planting date, take the seeds and place them in a Styrofoam cup or other container that will withstand some hot water. Draw warm to hot water from your kitchen faucet and pour it over the seeds. Most of the seeds will float, just leave them in the water overnight as the water cools down. 24 hours later most of the seeds will have settled to the bottom of the cup.

Drain off the water. Place the seeds in a plastic bag with a mixture of sand and peat or other suitable growing mix. Even light potting soil will work. The peat or soil should be moist, but not soaking wet. Poke some holes in the bag so there is some air circulation, and place the bag in your refrigerator for a period of 100 days.

After 100 days you can plant the seeds outside. If you have timed it correctly, you should be at or close to your target planting date.

To plant the seeds just sow them on top of a bed of well drained topsoil or
sterilized potting soil, and cover with approximately 3/8” of soil. Water them thoroughly, but allow the soil to dry out completely before watering thoroughly again. If you water them frequently, not only do you stand a chance of the seeds rotting from being too wet, but you will also keep them cool, which will slow down the germination process.

Once they start to germinate provide about 50% shade to keep the sun from burning them. Snow fence suspended about 30” above the bed will provide about 50% shade. Japanese Maples will tolerate some shade so it isn’t too important to transplant them too quickly.

Depending on how close together they are, you might be able to leave them in the same bed for one or two growing seasons. Don’t transplant until they are completely dormant.

Make The Best Compost for Your Garden

Compost for Your GardenWell-finished compost will be used at any time, in any season and in any quantity. there’s no such factor as an excessive amount of compost!

Begin to relish the numerous advantages of compost by creating by removal it into the highest 4 of vegetable and flower beds within the spring. this may establish an honest humus level and mineral balance in your soil, and supply the nutrients that your plants want. In mid-season, combine compost with soil as a aspect dressing on vegetable rows or around flower plants.

In established plantings of perennials, where you want to condition the soil and increase fertility without uprooting the plants, work compost liberally into the top 4 inches of soil. Even deep-rooted perennials will perk up! The compost, which contains natural antibiotics, will also help ward off plant diseases.

You can top-dress an established lawn with up to 1/2 inch of compost, or use it as a potting soil for houseplants, or as a rich supplement to your seed-starting medium.

Some nutrients in compost are water soluble, so you can make “compost tea” for seedlings, houseplants and other delicate plants.

Here are some simple steps to the perfect compost:

Location, Location, Location

Place your composter or compost pile in a location that is preferably shady and out-of-the-way but still convenient to your kitchen and garden.

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Assemble Ingredients

The secret to great compost is a balance of green matter (i.e., fresh organic matter high in nitrogen, such as grass clippings and vegetable wastes) and brown matter (i.e., dry organic matter high in carbon, such as fallen leaves, straw, etc.). Your compost material also needs air and water.

Chop Ingredients Before Adding

In a “cooking” compost mixture, billions of microorganisms chew up organic matter, converting it to dark, rich humus. The smaller the pieces, the faster this process takes place.

Mix and “Cook”

Turn your composter (or pile) daily to provide the air necessary to “cook” the compost.

Add Water

As with all living things, bacteria need moisture to thrive. Add water, if needed, to keep the pile moist but not soggy.

These things do not belong in a compost pile:

  • Bones, meats, dairy products, or any products that contain animal fats.
  • Dog or cat waste.
  • Invasive plants (such as ivy and morning glory vines), poisonous plants (including poison oak and poison ivy), or invasive weeds. Check with your County Extension Office for recommendations.
  • Plants that are diseased, insect-infested or treated with pesticides or herbicides.
  • Any non-organic materials such as plastics or synthetic fibers.


Plant Vegetables Indoors, why not?

Vegetables IndoorsDeciding once to plant vegetables varies in keeping with the kind of vegetable you’re attending to grow. With the exception of cold-weather plants, you wish to make certain to not sow seeds till once the last frost for your region. you’ll go away with golf stroke them within the ground every two week, however any sooner and you may in all probability ruin the seeds. Planting at the proper time is such a very important think about a decent garden that several home gardeners plant vegetables indoors is an appealing solution.

I recommend that you plant vegetables indoors to achieve reliable sprouting. Starting them inside eliminates most of the guess work that is involved with outdoor sowing. For home gardens, space is not an issue. The typical home garden is around 50 sq. ft. which means you typically have less than 100 plants growing at one time.

Be sure to plant vegetables indoors when the temperature is consistently above 70 degrees as a rule of thumb. This is the ideal temperature range for most seeds to germinate. A windowsill in the winter time is a good choice in most homes, since the sun will provide some additional heat.

For outdoor planting, be sure to consult the planting suggestions on the back of the seed packets for each type of plant. Also be sure to pay attention to spacing requirements for each type of plant. You want to sow your seeds with adequate spacing.

Most seed packets will show a map displaying the different planting zones for each region of the country. These typically account for the last frost of the season. You can use this as a starting date for when to plant your vegetables outside, however you would be wise to consult your local weather forecast for the month you are planning to plant your vegetables in case the weather is going to unusually cold this season.

To be honest, planting vegetables indoors is better for home gardeners assuming you have the space for it. It isn’t hard to find the space for seed starting since you can start 72 plants in a space smaller than 2ft. x 2ft. I strongly suggest that everyone plant vegetables indoors. It saves a lot frustration early in the growing season.

I like the fact that outdoor temperatures can’t delay getting my garden started early for a longer growing season. The last thing any gardener wants is to get a late start on the growing season. I am sure you feel the same way. Get started on the right foot and plant vegetables indoors.

6 Facts About Products Everyone Thinks Are True

Why Is A Water Softener Necessary? Some homeowners do not see yet the benefits of home water softener. Water treatment companies are there to help us keep our water pipes and fixtures from being clogged up. Shower heads and faucets in some homes are clogged up because they have hard water and this hard water contains calcium that deposits into these fixtures. For just a matter of 2 or less number of years, your shower heads will not function well because it is already clogged up. We can enumerate several benefits in getting your water supply softened using a good quality home softener. There are several choices of companies with water treatment systems that could fit your household. Know that hard water can also cause soap scum and your laundry stiff. Note that hard water does not lather soap well enough, and you will end up consuming more soap and will take more time in your laundry. Using less soap in getting your clothes clean means cutting down your costs in laundry. Since you consume less time in doing your laundry, you also save on water. Water that is softened will help make your dishes clean better and faster.
Looking On The Bright Side of Softeners
Your skin and hair is observed to be dry if unsoftened water is used. When water is soft, you can rinse out soap and shampoo better, leaving your skin and hair without residue that causes hair to be stiff and lifeless. With softened water, you won’t consume body lotions and hair conditioners that much thus consuming less with these supplies.
Finding Similarities Between Systems and Life
You will also notice that your tub, sink, shower and bathroom tiles have ugly looking orange stains, and this is due to the water that contains calcium and magnesium. To just remove the stains and clean your bathrooms, you will be spending more tough stain removers plus it is bothersome to just make your bathrooms clean. Note that the orange stains will eventually turn dark brown and rarely removed, while soft water won’t leave ugly stains. You will save time and money when your appliances and home fixtures are not replaced offer due to the home water softener you installed. Water treatment companies can advise you that you can save up to $5,000 in your plumbing system, water fixtures and appliances by installing a home water treatment system. Today, most homes install a water softener, that saves them time and money, as part of their basic home appliances. Energy and fuel costs are saved when your appliances become efficient with the softened water in use like water heaters and others. You will save on your electricity bills if you use softened water when using the rinse cycle at just one time for your dish washer or washing machine. Therefore, it is advisable that you ask for the help of water treatment companies for your water softener needs and get the benefits of this system.

The Path To Finding Better Sales

Issues to Look Into When Selecting a Ductless Minisplit

Green builders emphasize on getting high-performance windows and above-code levels of insulation to reduce air leaks in their homes thus most greenhouses have low cooling and heating loads. Apart from getting the high-performing windows and a good degree of insulation most of the green homes are being heated and cooled using ductless mini splits or ducted mini splits which are air-source heat pumps that have ratings of between 9,000-15000 Btu/h range which are suitable for small load houses. Such kind of systems use electricity thus they are a good fit for any home that has a roof-mounted photovoltaic system.

Despite the benefits that these mini splits offer some builders have some doubts regarding them and they wonder if it is possible to cool and heat a house with just one or two ductless mini splits and if extra rooms like the bedroom need a separate heater or forced heat register.

When opting for a mini-split, the first thing to look at is the load calculation of both heating and cooling which can be done using a formula that most contractors do not know and most contractors use the rule of thumbs which can lead to excessive cooling and heating loads and oversized equipment. To acquire a good mini-split system the person needs to get an overview of the available equipment such as the outdoor unit of the mini split system which is called the compressor and there are many kinds of indoors units among which one is the wall mounted unit that is designed for ceiling installation and is at times called a cassette.

There are various types of ducted indoor units such as a multi-split system that includes an outdoor unit that is connected to either one or more indoor units and most of these units are multi-zone systems not single-zone systems but both mini split and multi-split systems need 220 or 240 volt AC power. The systems are fashioned in a way that as the outdoor temperature drops both the heating capacity and the coefficient of performance (COP) of the air-source also drops thus if the person expected to heat the house with a mini split system when the temperature outside drops to -130F 0r 150F then they will have to look at the heating capacity of the equipment at these outdoor temperatures.

An electric resistance heater has a coefficient of performance (COP) of 1 which means that it is 100% efficient thus when you put in 1 energy unit it gives the user 1 unit of heat and compared annually an air-source heat pump is about two or three times more efficient than an electric resistance heater thus has an average COP of 2 and 3.


3 Roofing Tips from Someone With Experience

What Are the Benefits of Getting the Best Roofing Company? When you opt to have your home in good condition for the many years to come, then it is a must that you only get the best roofing services from the professionals. When you talk about anything related to your roof, there are a lot of things you must take into careful account. If you only hire the best and the most professional roofing contractor available around your area, then it is a guarantee that you will only get the most from your roofing solutions and services. There are numerous roofing solutions that would be good for your roofing problem, but you must know how to choose one first. Though there are numerous roof styles one can choose from brochures, do make sure to keep in mind that this will still have to depend on the characteristics and dimensions of the roof of your home. If you have come to the decision to have your roof replaced to make it more sturdy, then you must do the necessary planning in a step-by-step manner. This article will be of great help for home owners who are planning to have their roofs renovated. You have to have concrete answers as regards a few important questions first about your roofing situation before you get to learn everything about getting them installed. The first step towards your roofing endeavor is to find out which roofing contractor and manufacturer will be able the job for you. Another important consideration is the kind of building that you currently have to get your roof installed. If you are knowledgeable about the kind of building that you have that needs roof replacement or installation, then you are most definitely also knowledgeable of the things that you must do to avoid having to face roofing problems in the future. Your building being old or new is not really that important when it comes to roofing installation. What really matters most is the kind of roof that you get to have installed on your building that is sure to keep it in good condition in the long run. The condition of your building does not matter just as long as you know which roofing contractor will be able to get your roof installed or repaired that is a fit to its structure; surely, your house will look just as new.
Doing Services The Right Way
Another important aspect you must consider is the structure of your building. This must be considered because this will serve as the foundation for your roof.
The Essential Laws of Roofs Explained
To avoid any hassle, it is also recommended that you take the time to use the internet to find which kind of roof suits your building structure best. You will also be able to get a list of roofing company names that you may want to hire. If you do extensive research, you are guaranteed to know which things you must do and which things you must avoid.

Getting To The Point – Roofing

What You Should Take Into Account When Roofing This is an important aspect to put into consideration while building a house. Apart from being the topmost part of a building, it is the most important. You would face environmental hazards such as hailstorms if you didn’t have a roof. Through roofing, your belongings as well as family members are protected against dangerous animals. Rain, dust, wind and sunshine does not penetrate your home because of a roof. Different roofing materials are made available just for your home. However, there are a number of things you need to consider to ensure that you choose the most appropriate. This article will look at just a few. Take the matter of the cost into your hands as the first thing. Even as you try to fix the cost of everything in your budget, put a lot of emphasis on the cost of the roofing material you have chosen. Ensure that the model of the house and the roof you have chosen are at per. In cases where some people try to be economical, let the worth of the roofing material agree with the money you are paying for. The value of any roofing material is different from each other. Spend all the time deciding on which roof is excellent for your house. In any case, consult your architecture who is always willing to give you advice. How are your installers like? The end results of your work will be determined by these people. Don’t just settle for installers you find in the streets. You can be sure of excellent results once you take time finding installers. It therefore becomes appropriate to ask for references from friends and family members. Consider both their experience and level of professionalism. Eventually, you will discover that working with experienced and professional installers produces excellent results. You will never have room for regretting once the job is complete.
Roofing – Getting Started & Next Steps
Also, you need to understand about the condition of your current roof in case you are doing a renovation. You will always find people needing repair after their roofs spoil. In such scenarios, these people are forced to relocate to new places to make the installation process effective. It is quite impossible to replace old roofs with new ones with household tools and other belongings in the home. Therefore, as the roof is being replaced, the owner should have identified a temporary place to stay.
A Beginners Guide To Businesses
Roofs need maintenance and care in the days of their service. To ensure that this is effectively achieved, keep all the warrantees of the roofing materials you have bought. This is because, you will need to evaluate the value of the roofing materials with such documents. You may choose to believe some of the reputable brands for high quality roofing materials. In the warrantees, you need to clearly understand what the content is about. Do not assume any unclear statement. Ask the manufacturer to clarify to you on the day of purchase. This is an appropriate way of curbing future disappointments.

Florance Electrical Celebrates New Year With Service Discounts


(Yarrawonga, Australia)— Florance Electrical, a premier Northern Territory-based residential and commercial service provider, recently announced their New Year’s promotion. The company is giving their customers a chance to save money while creating a safer space by providing them with a 10 percent discount on any switchboard upgrade throughout the month of January. Home and business owners can visit to learn how to take advantage of this limited-time special offer.

Alex Florance, owner of Florance Electrical, stated “For many people, the dawn of a new year brings new plans for property improvement projects they plan to tackle throughout the year. With that idea in mind, we’re giving home and business the opportunity to get a head start on at least one of these projects – upgrading the switchboard. Not only does this make any home or commercial property safer, but it also ensures a property is in full compliance with current standards.”

Many properties in the local area have older switchboards with fuses that supply the necessary power to lights and other circuits. Unfortunately, these systems are inconvenient and no longer meet current safety standards because they increase the potential for contact with electricity. At home and business owners can learn more about Florance Electrical’s switchboard services and the free safety inspection they offer to customers who would like to have their property evaluated by an experienced professional.

As Florance further commented, “In addition to a free safety inspections and regular promotions, our customers enjoy the benefit of around-the-clock emergency services and no callout fee during business hours. Whether a residential customer needs a ceiling fan installed or a commercial property owner needs phone lines throughout the building, our team has the capacity to handle it and guarantees that the work will exceed their expectations for quality.”

Residential and commercial customers who want to take advantage of Florance Electrical’s free safety inspection and January switchboard service discount should visit or follow the company’s Facebook page for further details.

About Florance Electrical:

Florance Electrical is owned and operated by Alex Florance a born and bred Territorian who has more than 10 years’ experience providing high-quality residential and commercial services in Darwin and surrounds. Their team of Darwin electricians are punctual, professional and have a positive attitude to every job. They offer a lifetime guarantee on all commercial, domestic and industrial electrical work, demonstrating their commitment to customer service and high-quality standards that comply with all safety codes and requirements.


Learning The “Secrets” of Screens

Home Security Systems For All Kinds Of Weather Conditions

Home security systems were created to protect our homes everyday at any kind of weather condition, however it would be best if you take extra care especially in harsh weather conditions. Some people do not know that there home security systems can malfunction during a certain season. This is mostly the time burglars invade homes. That is why you need to know the season that affects you home security system and the things that you can do in order for you security system to properly function.

Below are tips that you can do in order for your home security system to function in different kinds of weather:

A. Home security systems in springtime

Home security systems in this kind of season does not really get that much damaged and it is not that prone to burglars. In this season, the temperature constantly changes from hot to cold and from cold to hot, and this can affect the security system of a home. Usually, it affects those equipment that are outside. Examples of security equipment that can be found outside the house are security cameras, security alarms, motion detectors and more. It would be best if you get waterproof equipment, so that it wont get easily damaged.

B. Home security system in summertime

There have been studies, that this is the time when burglars invade houses. This is a proven fact. One of the reasons why burglars are prone in this season, is that almost every resident goes on a vacation. This give burglars the chance to invade houses.

People usually open their windows during this season, and this is one of the reasons why burglars steal from these houses. For example, if you leave the window open in the second floor, that is where they can enter your home. Security systems in this system do not get easily damage during this season, but it would be best if you get security systems that can monitor the whole house. This is best especially if you are on your own.

C. Home security system in Autumn

This is not a burglar prone season. People prefer to stay indoors during this season. Your home security systems must be waterproof.

D. Home security system in winter

There are many cases of burglary in this kind of season. Home security systems can really malfunction during this season. You need to have water proof and really durable home security systems.


Learning The Secrets About Electricians

Qualities of a Good Electrician Are you looking for a professional electrician for your household electrical needs? Or are you a new entrepreneur who needs the help of a professional electrician for the planning and installation of your electricity? Choosing one from your yellow pages is not really that simple because you need to make sure that the electrician you will be getting is coming from a legitimate company, with the right knowledge, skills and attitude of being a professional electrician. Before hiring an electrician for your household or for your business needs, let us first talk about the good qualities that you need to check. It is important to make sure that the electrician you’ll be getting is should be fully licensed or certified. You may contact your local utility authority or institutions governing electrical practice, to ensure that the provides their workers with proper safety measures and training in their respective fields and that it is reliable and trustworthy. Find an electrical contractor with an established and good reputation by asking referrals or recommendations from a relative, a trusted colleague or a friend who have actually experienced being serviced, because more likely you’ll receive the same excellent service as well. For you to study the track record of an electrical contractor, it may help reading online reviews and testimonials from real clients. Studying the company profile and the services offered on their website will give you an idea if the company is able to meet your electrical needs and expectations, and it is a big help contacting and asking them some few questions as well. Always remember that your home or business is at stake, so only hire electricians who are fully trained and experienced. A good electrician should be a keen observer and should able to do troubleshooting as problem arises anytime. A good and reliable electrician will explain the things to you in simple terms what needs to be done and what you need to expect, and he should be honest and is able to communicate concerns properly. A good electrician will also quote you a fair pricing and offers options that you can afford.
5 Uses For Options
This is often overlooked, but one of the best qualities of a good electrical contractor is having the accessibility and availability when you need their service right away, and is able to address prompt issues in emergency situations. It is best to choose an electrical contractor with 24/7 emergency electrician. We can help you get the best electrician you’re looking for, because we aim for efficiency, effectiveness and prompt response whenever you need our electrical services.A Beginners Guide To Electricians

6 Facts About Units Everyone Thinks Are True

Why Should Garbage be Disposal be Our Concern? If there are wastes around us then it is important to get rid of them. In our everyday lives we find a lot of things that need to go to the garbage bin. What people do today is to bunch all their wastes into trash bags and put them in garbage bins. Although it is common to throw your trash into a trash bin, there is actually a better alternative to this. There are now garbage disposals that you can install in your sink where you can throw away all your wastes. The garbage disposal system you install is powered by electricity and they can shred your wastes and send them down the plumbing system. Getting a garbage disposal for your home will be very beneficial for you in a number of ways. Here are the benefits of installing garbage disposal system in your home. One benefit of using a garbage disposal system is that it is easy to use. All you have to do is throw your wastes down and you will no longer have to worry about it at all. Without a garbage disposal, you will have to deal with trash It is not a very pleasant experience to deal with trash.
The Beginner’s Guide to Equipment
But there is more, having to deal with trash is not only unpleasant, it can also be quite dangerous. The thing with bacteria and other invasive microbes is that they love trash and this is where they thrive. And if you deal with trash then you can come in contact with this dirty trash and put you at risk of catching these dangerous microbes. Contracting these bacteria and having it get into our system is something that will really make us ill. IF you keep trash around you house then you might risk you and your family’s health.
The Beginners Guide To Disposals (Chapter 1)
If you are convinced of getting a garbage disposal to get rid of your trash you may not know what happens after you push the trash down the drain. What happens to your trash once they enter the garbage disposal system is that they are shredded to bits and then they are sent to the plumbing system where they end up in water districts. When they arrive in the water districts, these wastes are cleaned out of the water. There are people who worry that the water going in their house will become polluted if they have a garbage disposal system in their sink. However, wastes don’t end up dirtying your water supply because they simply are led to the water district. If you send you waste to your local water district then it is actually a much greener option than throwing it out in the trash bins. The reason for this is because once your wastes are in the trash, they make their way to the landfill. We all know that landfills do not help our planet. Install a garbage disposal in your home if you want to help your planet and go green.

Short Course on Options – What You Should Know

Factors To Consider When Choosing A Carpet Cleaning Service Among the most competitive industries is the carpet cleaning services. When you are searching for the ideal one, you will come across so many people who are talking about knowing how to do the services. Choosing the ideal person can be hard for a person especially when you consider the great number available today in the markets. Carpets are pieces of clothing in the homes that require care when washing since they easily harbor dust and dirt in them. There is a need to have professional cleaners who are good in using the right equipment to clean. When you notice that the carpet has grown dirty or dusty, you will find that it will be easier to have it cleaned immediately to avoid it being destroyed by the dirt at hand. Several factors need to be considered when it comes to choosing the right carpet cleaning services for yourself. The first thing you have to be cautious about is the level of experience that the cleaners have. You will need to consider a cleaner who has the right training on how to handle the carpets and therefore knows how well to work with the equipment. You will be required to look deeply at the certificates that are offered to you to ensure that they are the right ones.
The Essentials of Cleaners – Revisited
The next thing to be cautious about is the way the carpet cleaning company handles their customers. Keep in mind that you have to know how the people you are dealing with are able to respond to the calls that you make. The technician who will perform the work should also be quite professional as well as conduct themselves in the right manner.
Short Course on Options – Getting to Square 1
You have to make sure that the person you are dealing with takes some good time in inspecting the work they are meant to do. This is where they have the opportunity to know where there is a need to use different detergents due to stains. In order to have the carpet cleaned well, consider showing them each area of the carpet to have a thorough inspection. When the carpet does not fully dry, there is a certain odor that can come up which you have to know the ways in which they handle such. Ensure you have discussed in details on the amount of money that will need to be paid for the given services. Do not be tempted to choose a cleaning service due to its cheap ways of doing things. You must look into details how well the cleaners are in their trainings. You should always insist on getting the right value for your money in each case.

The Ultimate Guide to Options

How to Purchase Energy-Efficient Replacement Windows Homeowners these days are energy conscious – they want to lessen their heating and cooling expenses. And opting for the right windows is among of the most significant steps they can make. There are four things to consider when buying energy-efficient windows, namely, frame, glass, design and installation. Frame
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There is an assortment of materials available for window frames, each one having their own positive and negative sides. It’s up to you to come to a decision on what works for your style and your funds.
The Beginners Guide To Homes (Chapter 1)
Vinyl: A well-assembled and installed vinyl window can be a handy choice: it is cost-effective while still offering tremendous energy efficiency measures with the use of insulated glass and unyielding construction that lessens air leakage. Wood: Wood windows give the highest insulative value, even if they also need more upkeep compared to vinyl, wood-clad or aluminum frames. But due to the potential for rot, they may not be the most excellent alternative for exceptionally rainy or humid climates. Aluminum: Whereas not the best-performing choice in terms of heat transfer and loss, aluminum windows are a wise choice in rainy, humid climates, and they measure up to severe coastal building codes in hurricane-hit areas with their remarkable strength. Wood-Clad: Wood-clad windows seem like they provide the best of both worlds: a low-maintenance exterior (generally vinyl or aluminum) enclosing a temperature-transfer-resistant interior made of wood. If yours is a wet climate, however, clad windows may be susceptible to water intrusion, which can bring about rotting. Glass You don’t have to check beyond a window’s glass to realize what the unit’s efficiency attributes are. All windows which are part of the voluntary Energy Star program are provided a sticker that indicates ratings from the National Fenestration Rating Council (NFRC). To meet the criteria for Energy Star status, window producers have to satisfy standards on these two key metrics: > U-value: resistance of a window unit to heat loss > Solar Heat Gain Coefficient (SHGC): (how much heat passes through the glass into a home For both of these measurements, a larger number translates to more efficiency. Design Specific window designs are intrinsically more efficient than all the others. The following are the most popular types: Double-hung windows (bottom slides are up to open the unit): They could be efficient alternatives, except in extreme climates, which can cause air intrusion between the sliders. Casement windows: A usual sight in climates where wind is a big problem, these units, with their outward-swinging crank for opening the window, can actually seal themselves off tighter the moment the blows into the home or building. Picture windows: These generally don’t open and may be bought in a range of shapes and sizes; however, they can as well be efficient. Installation Even the priciest window unit won’t do well if it’s not installed properly. Be careful with contractors who depend a lot on expanding foams or sealants to get a good window fit — these things aren’t waterproof and may require returns down the road.