Guide: How To Buy A Commercial Dishwasher

Buying the right commercial dishwasher for your business is not a simple thing. There are several factors that you need to put into consideration to ensure that you are purchasing the right machine. You don’t want to invest in a piece appliance only to realise it is too small for your business or vice versa.

If you are planning to go to the market for a commercial dishwasher, we’ve rounded up top 7 considerations for buying commercial dishwashers that suit your needs. Here is our guide on how to buy commercial dishwashers.

Size and Capacity

The first and most obvious factor to consider is the size and the capacity of the commercial dishwasher. Buy a machine that can handle the workload in your kitchen and fit in the kitchen perfectly. So the external dimensions of the dishwasher are very crucial when it comes to size and maximum space utilisation. On the capacity, check the number of glass dishwasher racks it can clean in one hour. So before you begin your search, first consider the size based on the space and then the workload that the dishwasher will be handling.

Types of Dish Racks

effective commercial dishwasherDish racks maximise the effectiveness of cleaning dishes. That’s why they are an important factor to consider when buying commercial dishwashers. However, picking the right rack option can be tricky due to the vast range of varieties in the market. Some of the most common types of racks include peg racks, flat racks, full & half size, glass racks, and cup racks. Some have close-set tines that are perfect for more plates and bowls while the spread tines accommodate larger dishes and pots.

If you are washing glasses using the machines, you might need tacks with fold-down tines to lock in glasses. So when buying commercial dishwashers, make sure that the racks can accommodate all the dishes you will be cleaning. However, for those looking for an efficient and more flexible machine, you should consider buying a dishwasher with interchangeable racks.

Types of Dishwashers

It is important to know the type of dishwasher that will work for your commercial kitchen. There are several types of dishwashers that you can pick from. Here are five types of dishwashers that are popular in the market.

Undercounter Dishwashers

Their compact sizes make them perfect for bars and small kitchens. So if you are expecting to wash a small number of dishes, then this is the ideal machine for you. They make use of a single front-facing door and can handle up to about 25 racks per hour. That’s why they are perfect for small kitchens.

Conveyor Dishwashers

These types of commercial dishwashers are perfect for high volume cleaning. So if you need a machine to handle hospitals, cafeterias, schools, and other large institutions, conveyor version is the best option. The dishwasher uses a mechanical conveyor belt to transport racks through the machine. A good conveyor dishwasher can wash up to 400 racks in an hour. That’s how powerful it is.

Door-Type Dishwasher

door type commercial dishwasherThis is one of the popular types of commercial dishwashers. The dishwasher has doors that slide up and down for racks to move in and out easily and quickly. They are also known as rack dishwashers. They are mostly designed for a middle-size kitchen where undercounter type is too small, and the conveyor type is too large. Their capacity is about 80 racks per hour which is a pretty cool speed for most restaurants.

Glass Dishwashers

These types of dishwashers excel in washing delicate stemware such as wine glasses and other drink ware. If you are looking for a dishwasher for your bar, then this would be a perfect option.

Low and High-Temperature Dishwashers

A dishwasher either uses low or high temperature to sanitise dishes. So the choice is just a matter of preference. For the high-temperature dishwashers, they utilise high heat of around 180° F for sanitisation. However, you might need to buy a heater booster if the machine cannot meet this temperature.

For the low-temperature types of dishwashers, they use a chemical to sanitise the dishes. They have a lower running cost since the cost of heating is reduced. However, you will have a problem with cleaning grease-laden dishware.

Check The Drain Pump

One of the biggest problems with using dishwashers is draining dirty water from the machine. In cases where the drain is higher than the position of the machine, you need to have a mechanism of pumping the dirty water. Otherwise, you will have a big problem with wastewater management. So when selecting a commercial dishwasher, you need to check it has a drain pump before buying. You don’t want to undergo another cost of buying these pumps separately.

Water Filters

energy efficient commercial dishwasherThe other thing that you need to check when selecting a commercial dishwasher is whether it has a water filter system. The importance of water filters is to remove harmful contaminants, minerals, and sediment in the water. Otherwise, you might have a problem of sediment build-up in the machine and eventually damaging it. Water filters also help improves the lifespan of the dishwasher. So they are some of the crucial dishwasher accessories that you need to check while buying commercial dishwashers.

Noise

The noise factor is something that most commercial dishwashers forget to check, but it’s crucial. The fact is that these machines make a lot of noise- the bigger the machine, the louder is the noise. Whereas the noise is not an issue, it can affect your job, especially if it is a small restaurant. So check the decibel rating of the machine before buying. If you are buying commercial dishwashers for the first, seek professional advice from dishwasher specialist on the best decibel rating for your business.

Energy Efficiency

Last but not least is the energy efficiency of the dishwasher. It would be unfortunate to buy a machine only to realise that it has poor energy efficiency. That means a high cost of energy and short lifespan. Checking the Energy Star rating by a government agency to know the best machine. Go for the highest energy efficiency as it will help you cut electricity bills in the long run.

A dishwasher is a huge investment and so be sure that you are buying the right one. Go for quality and not for cheap models. In addition, go for a commercial dishwasher that offers a lifespan of 10-15 years. That’s how you get value for money.

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Trending Bathroom Renovations Ideas For 2018

architecture-bathroom-contemporary-280209 (1)

One of the most overlooked places in our homes is usually the bathroom, as we do not spend as much time in this room as other rooms in our house. People will often not put as much thought or planning into this essential room in our home as they could. However, it is something that can be done on a modest budget, and you can transform your bathroom into not only a functional room but also one of beauty. Here are some of the current trending renovations ideas for bathrooms in 2018 that you can incorporate into your home transforming it into a place that you will want to spend more time.

Making the Most of Limited Space with Narrow Fixtures & Fittings

Trending bathroom renovation ideas 2018 - narrow bathroom

Narrow bathroom

It seems that many modern homes have less space available, which can mean that the bathroom is cramped with very little space. One way that you can combat this is to install narrow bathroom furniture which takes up less space. As well as narrow sinks, baths, and showers, you can also opt for wall-hung storage units which can help to give a feeling of openness by tricking the eye and still provide you with plenty of storage space.

A Place for Him and Her

If you are lucky enough to have ample space in your bathroom you can opt for his and hers showers and sinks, which will mean you never have to wait to use the bathroom again. You may need to forego having a bath, but if you do there should be enough room for twin showers, even in a modestly sized bathroom. Having two toilets may be a bit much, but why not go for a bidet instead?

A Blast from The Past

Trending bathroom renovation ideas 2018 - victorian style bathroom

Victorian style bathroom

Another trend which is proving popular in 2018 is period-style bathrooms, complete with freestanding cast iron bathtub and Victorian style decorations. Freestanding baths have been popular for quite some time and complimenting this with ceramic handled brass-ware will give you a period style bathroom that is both suave and sophisticated.

Add Some Style with A Metallic Finish

Trending bathroom renovation ideas 2018 - metallic accent

Copper sink and tiles

For many years chrome has been popular in both bathrooms and kitchens alike, in 2018 people are sticking with the metallic finish but choosing different colours. You can get everything from brass handles for doors and cupboards, copper fixings for your sink, or even go one step further and select copper tiles for your wall. It is important not to overdo it too much, but with a few clever touches, you can create an impressive looking bathroom. You can get a wide variety of different colour finishes which will accent the decor of your bathroom and give it a look of elegance.

Bold Accents for Your Bathroom

Trending bathroom renovation ideas 2018 - bold colors

Yellow and blue bathroom

Something else that is proving to be extremely popular in 2018 for bathroom renovations is the use of bold colours to accent your room. Many homeowners will use light colors in their bathrooms, as this helps to make the room look larger, with darker colors giving the opposite effect. However, adding some bold colors to the bathroom can provide it with character and make it stand out. You can also add patterned wallpaper or large mosaic tiles to give your bathroom a touch of class. Your porcelain does not have to be white, and there are lots of options available including basin cabinets in red, as well as many other colors.

Make Your Bathroom A Wet Room

Trending bathroom renovation ideas 2018 - wet bathroom

Wet room

A wet room bathroom has been increasing in popularity for quite some time, and they are proving to still be a good choice in 2018. Making it a wet room is a practical idea, and it means you do not have to worry about leaks or spillages on your floor, with it potentially dripping through the floorboards. A wet room is highly practical and can create an inviting place, although the one drawback is if you live in a colder climate, you may have to wear slippers when you go in the bathroom to keep your feet warm.

A One Material Room

Another fad which started in the 1980’s and is making a resurgence in 2018 is the one material room. The same colors and patterns are used throughout the room, and you use the same materials as well. So, you will use the same tiles for both the floor and the walls, and instead of only having the walls partially tiled, you would cover the walls completely. When the room is done right, it can have a fantastic finish that will stand out and be characterful. If you are planning to use a darker color for this concept, it is essential that you get the lighting correct, with plenty of light in the bathroom. Otherwise, you could end up with what seems to be a claustrophobic room which looks small.

Floating Vanities Are In!

Trending bathroom renovation ideas 2018 - floating vanities

Floating bathroom vanities

2018 has also seen an increase in popularity for the floating vanity, which gives the impression that the room is larger than it is. All the plumbing components are hidden from view which means there are no pipes or wires on display. It is fashionable to have floating vanities that are made from either stone or wood, and there is a wide array of different finishes available with something to suit all tastes and budgets. Liam Howard from LJM, a bathroom renovation plumber in North Brisbane told us that this has been their number one request since they became all the rage on channel 9’s The Block. Liam said their facebook has been inundated with questions about where they can source the vanities and even how much to get the exact same bathroom!

The Technology-Based Bathroom

You may think that there is not a lot of technology that you can squeeze into a bathroom, but you may be surprised and what is available. You can turn your mirror into a touchscreen and have sensors that will automatically switch the lights on when you walk inside. You could get a fancy toilet that has a built-in bidet or even add a hand dryer. Some people add television or speakers to a bathroom, so they can listen to music or watch TV in the bath.  There are lots of different gadgets that you can incorporate into your bathroom to make it a tech-friendly and comfortable place to be.

Trending bathroom renovation ideas 2018 - latest bathroom gadgets

Latest bathroom technology

These are just some of the current trends for bathroom renovations in 2018, but there are lots more as well. You can look at the House & Home website for lots more popular trends for 2018 which can help you to plan the bathroom of your dreams for your home, no matter what your taste is!

Top Trends Bathroom Remodel Design 2018

 

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Are Pre-Purchase Inspections Really Necessary?

new home purchaseInspections can often be pivotal.

For many people, buying property will be the biggest purchase they will make in their entire lives. Strange to think that some people will spend tens of thousands, even hundreds of thousands of dollar on a home and don’t make sure they know exactly what condition it’s in.

That knowledge is essential.

Not the least because it’s a standard clause in contracts to state that the seller (or vendor) is only responsible for making sure you get the property in the same condition as when you signed the contract.

The Importance of Building Inspections

Here are some of the things pre-purchase building inspections can help you avoid.

Weak Structural Integrity

Weak FoundationThis is often the first thing people think of when it comes to getting their homes and other buildings inspected and with good reason. The knowledge that the building is structurally sound is huge.

Few people would want to spend time in a place where it felt like the floors could give out on them or the ceiling would cave in.

Unfortunately, places don’t always look like rotting shacks before part of the roof caves in. Big problems usually come from small problems compounding together over time.

On the bright side, an inspection report will let you know whether or not that crack in the wall is actually harmless. It will tell you the story behind the water spot in the ceiling. It will let you know whether or not the construction was done to proper standard.

Also, the best time to be aware of a termite infestation is before you buy.

Faulty Electrical or HVAC Systems

During a pre-purchase inspection, it is vital that the inspector examine your electrical system and your heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems.

Do you recall the clause in most contracts that states that whatever form the building was in when you made the purchase is how the seller has to get it to you?

If the central heating system wasn’t working or there was something faulty with the electrical system in the home when you signed that contract, the problem becomes 100% yours to deal with.

An inspector will ensure both that the systems are working properly and that they are affixed with the proper safety switches where applicable.

Bad Plumbing and Fire Proofing

Bad PlumbingThis could fairly be read as ‘waterproofing’ and fireproofing. Water and fire are two of the most damaging elements that can inflict harm on a home.

The lifespan of a building can often be determined by how well built and maintained its water systems are. Water is another one of those things that typically becomes a huge problem, rapidly, due to a number of small problems left unattended over time.

The inspector can spend time examining both an overhead tank and a simple faucet to keep an eye out for rust, corrosion, and cracks. They will also alert you to any dangerous molds and other hazardous situations.

For the ‘fireproofing’ the situation is more about ensuring that everything is in accordance with the standards of your local civic authority. As dangerous as fire is, making sure things are up to code goes a long way in keeping damage to a minimum.

Damaging Surroundings

When people think of getting an inspection, what most often comes to mind is examining the building itself. However, the surroundings of the building should be examined just as closely.

Patios and such are important, yes. However, a good inspector will make sure to inspect any fencing for soundness, termites and damp areas.

They will inspect driveways and pathways for damage. They will check garages and sheds to ensure they’re in the proper condition.

They should even look for issues with water drainage. Flooding or underground water retention can cause rising damp on the walls.

Going Over Budget

Pre-Purchase Inspection Saves BudgetOne of the most important aspects pre-purchase building inspections can help you with is staying on your target budget.

If you buy a house with a particular budget and find that there were repairs you weren’t expecting to make just a few months later, that suddenly makes the home more expensive than you had originally intended. Expense creep of this kind makes it easy to go over budget.

In addition, with your inspection report in hand, you’re aware of all of the issues with the building that you (or perhaps your agent) weren’t before. That makes you fully justified in asking for a lower price, or in finding another location altogether.

To ensure that you make a secure purchase on your properties, be sure to consider pre-purchase inspections in your plans. For more information on building inspectors in Victoria please click here. For information relating to other states please search online for information from the relevant Government authority.

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Airbnb Pushing Brisbane Renovation Boom

brisbane-airbnb

In the last few years, Brisbane’s prestige market has experienced a boom in sales. The market is benefiting immensely from the massive influx of investors from the Melbourne and Sydney. According to experts, then increasing appetite for the Brisbane’s prestige market is attributed to the excellent value it represents to the investors. Among the factors driving the demand is the rise of Airbnb rentals as an attractive investment opportunity. According to agent Frank Gosdschan, of McGrath Bulimba, at the moment, about 50 per cent of the buyers are from Sydney.

Positive Impact of Airbnb on Home Improvement

Most of these investors are buying homes for short-term rentals (Airbnb). According to Mr Gosdschan, the trend could be the reason why Brisbane’s prestige market in Brisbane is doing better than other parts of the market. He is currently marketing Adelaide Street East estates and houses and expects to secure better deals considering the recent sales deals sealed around this place. From reputable sources, some of the price-setting sales include $2.61 million for Number 119, which spans 959 square metres while a Number 125, which covers 2281 square metres of land, sold at $4.35 million.

Property owners are doing home renovations in Brisbane so they can have the property listed on Airbnb. According to Alma Clark, of Alma Clark Real Estate, he believes that these effects on the Brisbane’s market are as a result of strong Sydney Prestige price. He also mentions that investors are also gaining a lot more confidence as an ideal investment market. Buyers are also impressed by the much, much lower prices than for lesser properties in Melbourne and Sydney, said Mr Clark. It makes no sense to buy an expensive property in Sydney and still charge almost the same Airbnb prices as Brisbane investor.

Airbnb and Real Estate

Brisbane AirbnbAccording to Dr Andrew Wilson, Domain Group chief economist, numerous Brisbane suburbs are already benefiting from these developments in the marker. As of today, there is a number of city suburbs with medians over a million dollars. According to Mr Wilson, some of these suburbs include Ascot at $5,545,000, Hawthorne at $1,162,500, Bulimba at $1.05 million and Clayfield at $1.04 million amongst many others. According to him, this year, the prices could have gone up by 1.8 per cent. He also mentioned that the prices dipped at the beginning of the year but have picked up very well, and there is no doubt that the year will end on a high note.

This has been a great season for both the buyers and the real estate agents in Brisbane. With the prices being much lower than in Sydney and Melbourne, the appetite on Brisbane prestige market will not end any soon as long as Airbnb rentals are in high demand. The ripple effect will be felt in the entire real estate economy and the wider economy. “This is indeed one of the best economic environments,” said Mr Scott Darwon, Ray White New Farm Agent.

Reference:

https://www.domain.com.au/news/booming-brisbane-prestige-market-lures-sydney-and-melbourne-buyers-north-20170803-gxfcwo/

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A Growing Interest In Solar Panel Investment

residential solar system The idea of solar panel investment is rapidly becoming a viable option for many Australians. This should not come as a surprise given the many benefits that can be gained when using energy produced by the sun. For starters, solar power is completely clean and environment-friendly unlike other energy sources. This is just one aspect of solar panel installation that has made it an ideal alternative to traditional power being provided by many commercial companies.

A growing number of businesses in Australia have actually gone into some type of solar panel investment. Many of these have been quite satisfied as they are able to see a possible return on their investments in as short as four years. As such, Australian business owners are currently targeting a completely self-sufficient energy system founded on solar-based technology. This means that in time, they will no longer be receiving regular electricity bills.

Meanwhile, private homeowners also find the shift to solar power ideal although the initial costs involved in solar panel investment tend to discourage them. This is understandable, but when considering the life span of the typical solar panel, the initial expenses of getting them installed should be reasonably fair. On the average, these panels can last anywhere from 20 to 30 years while the accompanying inverters have been known to work efficiently for at least a decade.

Additionally, the Australian government has enacted a measure whereby local residents who opt to settle for solar panels as an energy source become eligible for some type of discount. Specifically, when making an investment in solar panel installation, Australians are issued what are known as RECs or Renewable Energy Certificates. RECs are credits that can come in the form of rebates which can be redeemed after the solar panels have been installed. Alternatively, these can be used directly when purchasing the solar panels for significant discounts. Australian solar PV system and solar lighting supplier Top Frog Energy recommends installing a small scale solar system that produces no more than 100kW so you are eligible for the solar feed-in tariffs for your state.Solar panels

These credits have become less prevalent across the country lately, and since the reduction in the rates of solar feed-in tariffs, the segment of people who can benefit from solar has narrowed slightly to those who can use energy during the day or residents who opt for off the grid storage solutions for energy produced like the Tesla Powerwall released earlier this month on pre-order. Because of these changes it is important to keep up to date with government legislation for feed-in solar tariffs in each state. Here you can find appropriate information for QLD & NSW.

Some people, however, see these incentives as short-term. Nevertheless, they remain attractive options for many Australians seriously considering a solar panel investment. In this regard, it should be worth noting that solar-based technology is bound to further improve in the coming years. This should eventually make solar panels more affordable for the average Australian household and enable them to see solar energy as the practical solution to the rising costs of commercial energy.

Of course, the vision of seeing an Australia that is fully dependent on solar power remains an elusive dream. Presently, solar energy production is still unable to accommodate the needs of people living in the metropolitan areas of the country. This is expected given the number of businesses as well as residential properties which have been in these parts for many years.

Still, in the regional territories of Australia, many homes and commercial companies have helped make solar power a major component of daily living. They serve as concrete proof of the viability of switching over to alternative and clean energy sources like the sun.

A few other natural sources of power have also been made available in recent years. Wind energy, as generated by ubiquitous windmills, shows promise but requires large-scale infrastructure and planning. On the other hand, solar panel investment can be conveniently made even at the micro-level category.

If you’re in the construction industry make sure you take advantage of the benefits available to homeowners when installing solar panel systems, solar hot water, and other renewable energy systems and be sure to encourage your clients to take up these options to help the earth and reduce their bills.

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Getting a Head-Start in The Roofing Industry

A roof being fixedAre you interested in becoming a roofer? We spoke with a renowned Melbourne roof restoration company to find out what is required. The process is rather straightforward and most professionals got a head-start in the industry through an apprenticeship with a local company. Apprenticeships provide opportunities to learn the more basic skills needed, while also giving the apprentice a chance to polish their skills and abilities. At the same time, payment is received as an on-the-job trainee. It’s like getting paid to study!

An alternative method to becoming a roofer is to complete a course with concentration on roof slating or another specific area of roofing. This will often require the completion of a specific set of hours and can be availed of through a government-sponsored program. These programs are available through selected local colleges as well as through any number of building/construction companies.

Either way, the duties that a typical roofer is expected to carry out can be wide-ranging although many of these tend to center around the repair and renovate aspect. In this regard, it is important for the aspiring roofer to familiarize themselves with existing roof types. At present, many roofing platforms are either flat or the sloped type, however, some less common models are known to exist. In any case, when it comes to sloped or pitched roofing, the repair will involve replacing the damaged tiles or colorbond sheeting with new ones.

On the other hand, flat roof repairs will often involve the use of felt asphalt. This will be used to replace waterproof roofing that has become damaged over time. In some cases a bitumen layer is used to coat the original roof layer.

Regardless of the roof type involved, becoming a roofer requires having a basic knowledge of all existing roofing systems even though the typical roofer will tend to specialize in only one particular variant. In this regard, it should also be noted that while most roofer jobs revolve around repairs and renovation tasks, orders for the installation of completely new roofs is also quite common.

roofing work in progressWhen it comes to accepting roof repair jobs, the experienced roofer is expected to follow a few essential steps to ensure that the job is completed in a satisfactory manner. For starters, any broken roof tiles need to be removed initially, through a process known as stripping. The next step will require an examination of the roof timbers with a view to confirming their soundness. Then the roofing materials will have to be measured and cut according to the required shape and size. After the cutting process, the roofer will work on spreading felt strips onto the timbers.

At this point, the tile rows will also have to be re-fitted to ensure uniformity in the roofing system. Afterwards, the roof joints are sealed with mortar with emphasis on the ridges. As roofing jobs require working at generally high areas, becoming a roofer will require overcoming a fear of heights assuming this exists. Other than that, roofers must always maintain a standard of protective gears, notably knee pads and hard hats, to keep them safe while at work. Needless to say, becoming a roofer is not for the faint-hearted.

Roofing jobs are often dirty and demanding from a physical standpoint. As such, aspiring roofers need to be physically fit, diligent and skilled to ensure a high level of work for each of their clients.

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On the Job as a Possum Removal Technician

The pest control trade has been growing in popularity in Australia in recent years. Low barriers to entry, above average wages and the enjoyment of having a variety of work roles and getting to work with animals are some of the reasons for this. One branch of the trade, possum removal technicians, are high in demand right now.

A possum removalist technician and his trapPossums are an arboreal marsupial species that are native to Australia. They are typically nocturnal creatures and inhabit mostly forested lands but are also very adaptable to different environments. As we have encroached on their natural habitat, many of their species have found shelter in suburban areas. They can often be found on roofs and ceilings of homes and can be a nuisance especially during evenings when they are most active. Possums can also chew through electrical wiring and timber, resulting in unsightly damage and costly repairs, and their urine and excrement are a health concern.

The increasing spread of possums into suburban areas has caused an increase in demand for possum removal specialists. These pest control technicians are specially trained in dealing with possums, and are well verses in safe and humane ways of catching and removing these troublesome marsupials. A possum catcher must be knowledgeable, highly-skilled and well-trained to ensure compliance with government laws and regulations. This is because the laws relating to the removal and relocation of one Australia’s fauna are very specific and very strict.

On the Job

A day in the life of a possum removal technician includes finding solutions for up to 10 call-outs concerning rogue possums. Once on-site, the possum pest controller must find all existing entry points into the premises in question, often involving a thorough search from up on the rooftop of the structure.

Once all entry points have been located they need to be blocked off, to stop re-entry occurring. This may leave possums trapped inside the dwelling, so traps need to be set to ensure the safe removal of any possums still inside. Red apples are usually used as bait, as possums have a penchant for such fruits. The traps need to be checked regularly over the next few days and any caught possum are set free back into their own natural habitat.

The first step in the possum removal process involves finding out how the critters are entering the home. Possums commonly enter under eaves or through gaps in tiles and roofing. Brown marks around these areas are a good indicator that a possum is entering through that aperture. Once these holes have been sealed to keep possums out, traps must be set to ensure no possums are caught inside where they might starve to death.

a mother possum and her baby caught in a trapAny caught possums must be released at dusk to a location that is no more than 150 metres away from where it was captured. When relocating a possum, it should be somewhere near trees or a tall fence that it can climb, otherwise the possum may not survive.

Safety is always a priority. Possum removal technicians only use natural methods to catch the possums to make sure that the people living in the home or property, as well as the troublesome marsupials, are kept safe. It is also the technician’s job to understand these creatures that have no other choice but to search for new places for food and shelter. Relocating them to a more suitable environment is a crucial task, but it is an absolute necessity that experts always comply with government regulations for their utmost safety.

If you’d like to know more about becoming a possum removal technician, speak with you local governmental authority to find out what is required, or get in touch with a local possum removal company e.g. Pesky Possum if you are in Brisbane, and find out how they can help you achieve your dream.

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The Minefield of Solar Panel Installer Accreditation

A solar panel installer working on a roof in SunnybankThe path to becoming a solar installer in Australia is not an easy one. This is largely because of the stringent requirements to get the appropriate licenses that lead to a solar panel installer certification.

The problem does not really end at this point as the process of solar certification can be a bit complicated at times. For example, depending on what the solar panels are going to be connected to, there may be other legislation required to perform specialist work. This will require the acquisition of a separate license. Just like other professionals in Australia, electricians need to be properly licensed prior to extending any type of electrical service.

In Queensland for example, a qualified electrician needs to also be certified with a solar install and design accreditation. We spoke with Kosta from Brisbane Solar Needs about the licensing required for solar panel installers. His company installs solar panels all around Brisbane, but focused on the south-side of the city around Sunnybank Hills, Springwood, Eight Mile Plains and Runcorn. He informed us that while the solar install accreditation was a much easier to attain than the initial trade certification as an electrician, the course still taught him a lot and was quite involving.

Laws vary from state to state. Presently, every Australian territory has its respective system with regard to providing occupational licenses. A professional license issued in Western Australia, for instance, is only valid in that state and will not necessarily be applicable in other regions.

This can pose a number of problems to many Australian skilled workers especially if they have plans of moving to a different city. Simply put, if they opt to find jobs in another Australian state, they will be required to secure a second license.

Needless to say, if you are thinking of becoming a solar panel installer in Australia the process will not be a walk in the park. This has little to do with the availability of jobs, but more of getting adequately certified, a process often delayed due to government red tape.

Nevertheless, a measure is currently being pushed by Australian authorities which should effectively address the issue. Officially referred to as NOLS or the National Occupational Licensing System, the initiative seeks to introduce a single certification for all Australian workers that will allow them to find the appropriate jobs anywhere within the region without worrying about securing additional licenses.

This is one piece of good news for many Australian solar panel installers. For starters, the costs and paperwork involved in getting several licenses for works inclusive of a given solar panel installation job will be reduced significantly. This may however cause problems in some areas which lure in installers from interstate, creating an oversupply and pushing down costs in the area.

Overall however, a consolidated licensing system should eventually help prevent cases of undue delay in getting to process various Australian government documents. This should lead to a faster and smoother workflow in related government offices in Australia.

Victorian legislators have already introduced the bill seeking to make NOLS an official Australian law. Several other states are expected to follow suit; unfortunately, some territories have still yet to. Until this happens across the entire country, the process of becoming a solar panel installer will unfortunately remain to be a slow and complex one.

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Metal Roofing And DIY Repairs

Generally, metal roofing requires very little maintenance as colorbond or corrugated iron is exceptionally durable. When properly installed, these strong, metal roofs can expect to last for several decades.

a metal roof on a Sydney home

A Colorbond metal roof on a magnificent Sydney home

This however, does not mean that metal roofing is totally immune to damage. When problems arise, repairs may have to be made. In some cases, this may even involve the installation of a completely new roofing system. This can either mean adding a new roofing atop the old one or removing the existing roof and replacing it accordingly.

In this case, the need to hire a professional roofing expert should be considered paramount. This is especially true in dense urban areas like Sydney where skilled workers need to be properly certified before they are allowed to accept jobs related to their expertise.

Unfortunately, a number of Australian homeowners have had to deal with various economic issues in recent years, and these have led them to reconsider their options. In this regard, getting necessary repairs done to their damaged metal roofs is one area that has often been forgotten.

In particular, many homeowners in Australia in need of roof replacements have been known to settle for the so-called do-it-yourself or DIY technique. The reason for this is obvious – hiring roofing companies to complete a roof replacement job can be quite expensive.

homeowners working on their roofIndeed, the DIY approach can be quite appealing, especially since people get the convenience and satisfaction of working on their own homes. After the task is completed, there is also a sense of achievement that can be felt.

However, the DIY option also has its disadvantages. Primarily this has to do with safety, an aspect of home repairs often disregarded by many overzealous and inexperienced homeowners. Carelessness can easily result in unwanted injuries, and this is not an entirely remote scenario especially when the repair job involves the replacement of damaged metal roofing.

For this reason, it is best to settle for highly-skilled workers when there is a need to replace an existing roofing system. Needless to say, there is no need to sacrifice safety just for the sake of avoiding the expected costs.

Additionally, after the repairs are complete one can rest assured that the roof will remain in top condition, at least for the next few decades. Roofs founded on metal have always been known to be highly durable, and this eliminates the need for regular or ongoing repairs. Even the adverse weather conditions in Australia are rarely a problem for the durable metal sheets commonly used here.

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Different Types of Home Construction

As technology has evolved we have learned how to make shelters from branches and turn leaves into magnificent skyscrapers. Each building has its own set of benefits because of its construction and it’s important to know what each type of home construction can offer before you make a decision on what type of building materials are best suited to you.

One of the nicest things about a well-made home is that it creates a more healthy living space. It can also, if done correctly, making your home more energy efficient. With this in mind, there are several ways to build your home using construction methods that are tried and true. We spoke with staff from one of Brisbane’s leading construction companies about the various home types that can be built.

stickbuiltconstructionStick Built Homes: One of the more popular types of home construction is a stick built (made out of wood) custom home. It’s the most common form of home construction because of the abundance of wood throughout many areas of the world.

Concrete Homes: Cooler in the summer, toasty in the winter and solid as a rock. Those are some of the benefits of concrete home construction. Building with this method offers you a solid home that is also weather resistant and very energy efficient; putting more money back in your pocket, while providing maximum comfort. Concrete homes are popular in climates that are hot and that are susceptible to hurricanes or storms.

Log Homes: The log homes are constructed out of whole tree logs. This method of home construction is not the most energy efficient way to build a home, but it does come with a certain pedigree that people love. Because of the less refined nature of the building materials for these houses, costs are often kept to a minimum during the construction phase.

Modular Homes: Modular homes, which burst on the scene and became popular in the 80s, are now one of the more popular residential home types. A modular home is basically a prebuilt, manufactured home that sits on top of a foundation. It is one of the cheapest ways to build a home.

brickconstructionBrick Homes: In many parts of the country, brick homes can be found in abundance. They are as much a part of the architectural style as the very landscape itself. Brick style homes these days do not require extensive masonry. The brick “look” can even be sprayed on to give the home a faux-brick like look that is very popular and aesthetically pleasing.

Paneled Homes: Rather than building a home board by board or stick by stick, many contractors realize that is no longer the most efficient building method. Paneled homes are instead built indoors and then delivered just as the name implies; as an entire panel. These offer an ingenious way to maximize energy efficiency, while offering a fast method of home building. The builders can craft the panels to exacting measurements in a climate-controlled environment, which is also great in regions which experience extreme weather conditions of hot or cold.

Tilt Slab Homes: This method of building with slabs is popular in new housing developments especially for townhouses. The concrete panels are made on site and then tilted up and fixed in place as the building is constructed. You can read more about tilt slab construction and how it works here.

Custom Home Construction: If you want a home built a different way – such as combinations with bricks and concrete or sticks and stones, the way to design your own home is with a custom home builder. They can work with you to choose the interior layout, exterior look and overall design of your custom home.

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