Ask for a Demonstration. This is not always required, but if you are not sure about job outcome or expectations, a demonstration of a service may settle your mind. Make a demonstration mandatory if you cannot be present at job start-up or if the service has few job satisfaction policies.

As a note, demonstrations take an enormous amount of time from the contractor. Often they will try to forgo demonstrations, asking the client to be on-site during the estimate and/or job start up in order for you to evaluate work performance. This is not uncommon.

Quality pressure washing contractors are in high demand and are very busy. They are just trying to make the whole process more time-efficient. If you are dissatisfied, don’t hesitate in telling them so. In the long run you will have saved them both time and effort.

Inquire about Equipment. Is it owned or rented? Owned or leased equipment is evidence of a long term commitment to the field of pressure washing. Renting shows only an occasional need for equipment. Also ask about the extent or power of their equipment.

For most pressure washing jobs they will have equipment ranging at 11-15 HP (horsepower, strength), 3000-4000 PSI (pound per square inch, force) and 3-5 GPM (gallons per minute, flow). While for the most, they will not be using their equipment at full power, equipment of this caliber provides the head room and adequacy for doing business.

A rating of 2000 PSI and 2 GPM or less, is a residential grade of equipment. It will not perform at the level of doing business (possible evidence of a substandard service provider).

Get Referrals. These provide the consumer with a detailed track record of contractors past work experience. Just remember, a pressure washing business is called to perform any number of different cleaning services.

Whether it is siding, decks, sidewalks, gutters, patios, or driveways, be sure the referrals and references you receive are representative of the service you desire. For instance, someone seeking deck cleaning should receive deck cleaning referrals, not vinyl siding cleaning.

As for a number of referrals, the more the better, but 6-12 should suffice. And don’t forget, once you have the referrals, use them. Ask specific questions concerning quality, workmanship, expected outcomes, cleaning procedures, business character, and satisfaction.

Satisfaction and Billing Policies. A number of power washing businesses offer various policies that help ensure customer satisfaction. One of which, is the suspension of billing until job completion and customer satisfaction. Ask the contractor, in the event of customer dissatisfaction, what their policy is.

Insurance. Check to see if your contractor carries liability insurance. A qualified pressure washing contractor, realizing their responsibility, will have taken the time to protect both themselves and their clients from possible on-site accidents, injury, or damage.

Be Present at Job Duration and Completion. This is your way of observing work activity as it takes place. It gives you an idea of what is involved in pressure washing and allows seeing cleaning results as they occur.

Quite often, the results in cleaning are remarkable and the consumer should experience this process first hand. You actually see the effectiveness and value of the service for which you will be paying. It settles the mind, knowing you have received good service for your hard earned dollar.

Being present also allows you to head off any problems and catch any areas that may be missed or improved upon. A contractor is much happier to improve such areas (ensuring satisfaction) during the job, than to return later in the future, since returning will consumes enormous time and effort for which the contractor is probably not getting paid. Again another benefit for both parties.

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Power WasherEducating yourself is the primary defense in protecting yourself from under-qualified and poor quality jobs from power washing specialist or company. Once the consumer understands a service and what’s involved, they will be well equipped to distinguish cut-rate jobs from quality workmanship. Realize the possibility for damage exists, and cut-rate performance increases your exposure to costly repairs. Knowing what’s involved is your protection.

Educate Yourself -Family, Friends, and Neighbors. There are several ways of educating yourself. First of which, is to consult your friends, family, and neighbors. It may be that some of them are already familiar with the service you desire. They may already be knowledgeable of the application, procedures, outcomes, and liabilities of your situation. They may even refer you to a qualified contractor. Likewise, they may advise you to avoid a certain business that is notorious for poor service.

The Internet. There is a wealth of information pertaining to power washing on the Internet. This page and many others supply information for both the homeowner and the professional. Check pressure washing home pages, consumer groups, and bulletin boards. All of these will help. Simply type “power washing” or “pressure washing” in any major search engine or try the other consumer guides provided by Carved Stone Publications to get yourself started.

Keep Your Eyes Open. As you commute across town, keep your eyes open for pressure washing specialists at work. Don’t be afraid to approach them and inquire about their service. This is an excellent time to see the process of power washing at work as well as to ask any questions you may have. Most power washing contractors should be very excited to explain their service, its strengths and its limitations.

Talk to the Pros. Refer to your Yellow pages (Deck Cleaning, Pressure Washing, Power Washing, Water Pressure Cleaning, etc.) and any other advertisements you may encounter. From these, contact several pressure washing contractors, inquiring about service, consultation, and estimates. Even if you receive a beautiful flier on your doorstep, be sure to call other contractors. This is your greatest protection. Talk to multiple contractors, asking them specific questions on service, procedures, expected outcomes, and possibilities for damage. Together you will receive a more complete picture of the service, weeding out obvious inconsistencies in service.

Meet the Contractor During the Estimate. Meet the contractor face-to-face during the estimate. By doing this, you and the contractor will take the time to evaluate the site together.

This betters the channels of communication between the two parties, and reduces errors in the estimating process. Besides improved communication, this is perhaps the best way to judge the character and overall presentation of the pressure washing contractor.

Risks and Expected Outcomes. A qualified contractor will take the time to review your site, ask questions and seek out areas of concern. They will listen to your every word and interpret the service you desire and expect. In turn, they will also review with you, the strengths and limitations of their service.

Get Written Estimates. Having a detailed written estimate protects both you (the consumer) and the pressure washing contractor. It should explicitly state the desired service, expected outcome and complete costing in time and material. Keep in mind, less cost can mean (and probably does mean) less quality and service. Basically, you get what you pay for.

Procedures Listing. For popular and frequently demanded cleaning jobs (i.e., deck cleaning/refinishing), a pressure washing contractor may supply a procedures listing. This brief listing outlines the steps that will be taken during your particular job.

It may be a separate sheet or part of the estimate. In either case, this can be a very helpful tool in comparing one service to another, understanding the entire process, analyzing cost comparisons, and weeding out possible low quality service providers.

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Have you noticed a lot of tiny bites around your ankles or legs that itch? Most often if you can’t find the source and you haven’t been outside to get attacked by noseums you are being attacked by fleas. There are several methods for flea pest control and you should be aware of all of them before you begin treating your home for fleas.

Supervise pets outside

First to avoid a flea problem all together you should not allow your pet outside during the summer months or if you live in a hot climate at all unless you are there to supervise. Stay away from creeks, mud pits, other animals you are not familiar with, and tall grassy areas. Fleas like to ride around on live animals and they are most populated in forest or wetland areas that tend to be muggy.

Taking care of the flea problem

If you do have a flea problem or are worried about fleas, you can give your pet medication as a preventative flea pest control measure. This medication is usually a drop or two on the back of their necks every few months.

Some pets may be allergic to this medication so make sure the area is not beginning to lose hair. Also try not to hit the same spot each time, though their necks may be small you can move around a little bit.

Giving your pet a bath periodically can help keep the fleas at bay. There are also flea pest control shampoos that will allow you to de-flea your pet. There are powders and sprays you can use in the yard to prevent fleas from getting near your pets. Keep in mind your pet will need to be kept from the area for a few days so the spray can wear off without causing problems with your pet.

You home needs care

If you have a flea problem in your home, you will need to keep your pet locked out while you set off bug bombs for flea pest control to eliminate the fleas in your carpet, furniture, and bedding. If at all possible wash the pets bedding as well after you use a bug bomb to rid yourself of the fleas or buy new bedding.

Flea pest control is important if you want to get rid of the itchy ankles and legs. No one should have to put up with fleas and as long as you pay attention to your pet and make allowances for the flea season of summer you and your pet should be happy. Fleas are carriers of disease so you need to be extra careful if you even suspect you have fleas.

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Types of Water FiltersMany people are starting to become concerned by what is in their drinking water. Water filters and filtration systems are becoming popular in homes across the country. Safety is one concern, but taste is another that water filters address.

Contaminants are the cause of particles or bad taste. Testing your water for contaminants is the first step. If the contaminants are found, you can then look into a water filter.

The type of water filter you chose will be based upon a few factors. If you own your home you can pretty much install any water filter you chose, but if you do not own your home then you are limited to water filters that are non-evasive or easily removed.

Costs also vary from under $100 to over $1000. The amount of filtration also varied from filter to filter. To start with you should familiarize yourself with the types of water filters available.

Whole house filters are set up through the main water line that comes into the house. This type of water filter removes contaminants from all the water entering your home. A whole house system is good for removing particles like rust and sediment.

Under sink filters come in a variety of styles. There are filters that take multiple cartridges or only one. Each type of under sink filter is designed to remove different contaminants.

Some may only remove particles while others may have additional cartridges to remove odors and taste problems. These can be bought according to the particular needs based on the contaminants in your water. They only filter water going to the area where the filter is installed.

Faucet-mounted filters are easy to install and remove. It only filters the water coming out of the faucet where it is installed. There is not mounting required as most simply screw onto the faucet. These types of filters also come in a variety that can be chosen based upon what contaminants are in your water.

Canister filters are the simplest form of water filter. These filters are basically just a pitcher with a filtration system in the lid. Water is poured in, goes through the filter to the reserve tank (pitcher bottom) and then can be drank. The only water filtered is what is put in the pitcher.

These are the basic types of water filters. Your needs and the contaminants in your water will help you decide which water filter will work best for you.

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