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10 Good Tips for Buying a Leaf Blower

There are a lot of different factors that are involved in the purchasing of a leaf blower. A number these are just about your own choice and preference. However, you need to try and link the tool to the items that you want to do and the amount of work that has to be done. Here are 10 tips that should get you thinking in the correct way:

1. Select a walk behind leaf blower if you have a lot of blowing to do, in particular if you reside in a woodland location and have a lot of land to clear, where the leaves stack up to a depth.
2. Select a backpack blower when you have a fairly large area with quite a lot of leaves to clean up. Backpack leaf blowers are powerful, but comfortable and easy to use due to the way they are made. You can use them for longer periods of time without becoming as tired.
3. Use a hand held blower for light to moderate work where the yard is a reasonable size and you don't have to use the machine for great periods of time. Hand held blowers are quick and easy to operate, but can become heavy after using them for a time.
4. Choose a gas powered machine where you need a lot of blowing power and don't mind something that is quite heavy. Gas blowers come is various engine sizes to match your power needs.
5. Select an electric blower for small yards and light leaf blowing. Electric machines use a power wire and that can restrict the distance that you can reach.
6. Choose a battery blower for very light work and where you only need to work for about 20 minutes. Some come with 2 batteries which will increase the blowing time. The batteries are rechargeable.
7. Use a blower with a vacuum attachment if you need to collect and bag the leaves rather than just blowing them away. Some tools also have a mulching feature that will shred the leaves and compress them to take up less space.
8. Choose a fast air velocity if you want to break up clumps of wet leaves and move larger objects. The air velocity is measured in MPH and should be taken at the end of the tube.
9. Look at machines that move a lot of air volume if you need to vacuum heavy, damp and big leaves You can check this out by looking at the measurements in cubic feet per minute or CFM.
10. Select an electric blower if you need to have one that is relatively quiet. Electric machines are also light.

After you have decided on the type of blower that you want to purchase you should take a look at as many reviews as possible so that you can get the most reliable and cost effective result.


How to Buy and Use a Hedge Trimmer Safely

Anyone who has an interest in gardening and is the owner of a hedge will probably already own a hedge trimmer or is thinking of buying one. Hedge trimmers are ideal for, as the name suggests, trimming hedges. They work so well because a really nice neat and crisp finish can be achieved rather than having your hedge shredded and hacked to pieces.

However, although the majority of home owners will also own a hedge trimmer, it's important to realize that they are far from being toys and can be very lethal in the wrong hands. By following some basic advice you should be able to make use of your hedge trimmer without causing any harm to yourself or other people.

When buying a hedge trimmer it's important that you feel how heavy it is. If you buy one which is too heavy for you, there is a really high risk that you'll drop the machinery. This is obviously not something you want to happen; you can only dread to think of the consequences of a hedge trimmer falling whilst in operation.

Have a look at the cutting teeth and guards to ensure that your fingers can't fit in-between the spaces. Also make sure that no-one else in your household can fit their fingers through either.

Because hedges can grow pretty quickly in the warmer weather, you will certainly need to use your hedge trimmers quite a lot, sometimes every week. So if you are using yours a lot, make sure you have the blades sharpened well as this will prevent it catching on things and will help give you a more defined result.

Always take the time to read through the instruction manual so that you fully understand how the machinery works. It's amazing to think how many people ignore this advice and simply turn the machinery on and try to figure it all out by themselves. Because hedge trimmers are a potentially dangerous item you should always read the instructions, no matter how boring they may be.

Some hedge trimmers can be very noisy so you should consider wearing protection for your ears and also your eyes because you don't want the risk of leaves and twigs damaging your eyes.

If you have a tall hedge, always refrain from holding the hedge trimmer above your head as you could cause serious injury to yourself by doing this. If you need to reach a high area of your hedge it's much safer to go up some ladders.

This advice is far from being rocket science but it's important that you think about all the above advice. There are so many accidents every year involving machinery like this and it's all because people don't stop to think about what they are doing.


Discover These Amazing Landscaping Ideas

For anyone with a garden, there are so many great, easy garden landscaping ideas that you can try out to relax you - no matter if you're working in the garden or just sitting outside enjoying the air. Here are five great ideas that you can easily try out without a lot of effort:

Idea #1: Fountains are a great way to spice it up - No matter who you are, a nice little fountain is always something relaxing in a garden. And, these great little garden landscaping ideas offer you a sweet way to get a small, cheap fountain and place it in your garden to liven up any space. It doesn't matter what size fountain you choose, the sound of the water and the birds and butterflies it will attract will help you relax and enjoy your space.

Idea #2: Plant your favorite flowers or plants in pots - By doing this, you will be able to move them around your garden any time new garden landscaping ideas strike you. You'll be able to put them up on the porch, by your new fountain, or just spread them out in different ways to create new and unique looks all the time.

Idea #3: Simplify the colors that you have in your garden - Most people have at least a few colored plants in their gardens and one of the easiest garden landscaping ideas is to simplify these colors. You don't want a thousand different colors of flowers everywhere. Instead, stick to a few colors that go well together and space them out so that they are all pleasing to the eye, yet still gives you a sense of flow to your garden area.

Idea #4: Use climbing plants - These are wonderful ways to dress up any garden landscaping ideas and add in some spots of color and green no matter where you place them. Find an old trellis, a ladder, or anything else that you might not use much and plant some climbing plants around it. There are so many great plants that climb just about anything and offer some beautiful flowers any time of year.

Idea #5: Be creative with artwork in your garden - Many garden landscaping ideas revolve around a focal piece, but they don't have to. You can have different garden art pieces in other areas of your garden as well, and they don't always have to be right in the center. Try moving some of your items around to see where they might fit better in your garden and you will find that it will change the whole look of your space.

And there you have it, five great, easy to use garden landscaping ideas that you can fit into your time and budget. It's so easy to make small changes in your garden that will actually create a big change when you step back and take a look at it.


Working With Sprinkler Valves Helpful Hints

The purpose of having a yard sprinkler system is to make less work for you. It makes the task of keeping the lawn watered totally automated. When your sprinklers are working, they really do save you a lot of time. All you have to think about is how good your green grass is looking! However, what happens when something goes wrong? You will then have the tricky task of locating, cleaning, and fixing the sprinkler valves.

To locate these valves, your first step is to start back at the beginning. Find the main sprinkler system's supply line. This waterline can sometimes be located in your house, and sometimes it may be located at its own separate pump and well that supplies the water for the system. Once you have found that main line, you just follow it until you get to the area where it splits and you see multiple waterlines. The sprinkler valves usually lie just beyond this split, and can be easy to locate. Sometimes, however, they can be buried underground.

If the valves are indeed buried underground, you can start by looking for green or black valve boxes in your yard. These are often located in flowerbeds or near the sprinkler controller so it may be best to start looking in those spots. If you cannot locate a box, you can contact your sprinkler installer, or even get out your old trusty metal detector to sweep the ground looking for the buried sprinkler valves.

Once you finally locate your valves it is time to get to work. Valves issues usually present in a few recognizable ways. They either get stuck, thus allowing the water to run non-stop until it is manually shut off; or, they end up doing the opposite and do not turn on at all, block any water flow. They can also simply "weep", which is a small but never ending leak that can do some serious damage. If weeping is the case it might be time to call in a professional to fix your sprinkler valves.

If the valve is not turning on or is not shutting off then it is very likely that some debris has gotten lodged in it. You will need to take it apart carefully and clean each piece. Start by removing the solenoid (usually a black box with wires sticking out) and then check the plunger beneath it. It should move easily and be springy; if it is not, it may need to be replaced. Clean all parts of the valve thoroughly removing any bugs or dirt you see and then put it back together. If you have cleaned every part of the sprinkler valves and they are still not working properly, it may be a bad solenoid, bad wiring or even a ruined diaphragm. You can choose to read up on how to fix these matters yourself, or you can save yourself some time and call in the pros.

There are options you can try to fix sprinkler valves. With a little hard work, you can get your sprinklers back up and running again!


Ideas For Yards: 5 Inexpensive Ways to Improve Your Yard

Ask anybody who does not have their own yard and they'll tell you that having a yard is a privilege. That's true - if you spend the time to properly take care of it, that is. On the other hand, if you have let your yard go to pot, it can quickly become a curse. Let's face it: without the proper upkeep and care, having a eyesore of a yard is much worse than having no yard at all.

If you are ready to get back out there and enjoy your yard again the way it was meant to be enjoyed, here are 5 ideas for yards. These are all inexpensive and fun ways to make your yard more beautiful, more livable, and more enjoyable:

1. Make a walk out of stepping stones:

A great way to spruce things up in your yard is to create a nice-looking walk out of stepping stones. This can actually be a very inexpensive idea to improve your yard because you can create your own stepping stones from scratch. All you need is a mold, some concrete, and something with which to decorate your new stepping stones. Done right, you can get the cost down to around $3.00 per stone.

2. Create your own rose garden:

Recall any classic photos of beautiful gardens you have seen over the years and one thing comes to mind more readily than any other: roses. If you think having a rose garden of your own is too costly, think again. To create your own rose garden, start by picking a spot in your yard that you tend to walk by frequently and that is near a spigot. Outline the rose bed with native rock or landscape timbers, and make sure that you expose your roses to the best possible conditions by buying some garden soil.

3. Make a butterfly garden:

Yes, you can create a patch of garden in your yard that actually attracts enough butterflies to call it a butterfly garden. Hint: different species of butterflies prefer different types of nectar, so try planting in an alternating pattern both wild and cultivated plants. Note that groups of the same plants will easier for butterflies to see than singly planted flowers.

4. Aerate your lawn regularly:

Aerating your lawn is a smart way to keep it looking its best all year 'round. Some master gardeners call aeration your secret weapon for keeping your lawn looking healthy. Benefits to aeration include: allowing your lawn to breathe, helping organic fertilizers and nutrients to get more direct access to your lawn's roots, helping break up thatch (that matted layer just above the soil), and allowing more water to get to your lawn's roots. A fun and inexpensive way to aerate your lawn is with special cleats available from your local lawn and garden center: just walk around and aerate as you go!

5. Build your own garden shed:

Finally, one thing you can do for your yard to give it a cleaner, better-organized look in a very short period of time is through having garden shed. With a shed, you can organize your tools, garden supplies, miscellaneous building materials, and just about anything else currently laying around in your yard. The least expensive way to acquire a new garden shed that also affords you the most design options is to build your own. You can find master carpenter-quality plans right on the Internet, download them, and then build the shed yourself with your existing tools.

Take advantage of these ideas and tips for making your yard a much more organized, beautiful, and fun place to spend time for you, your family, and friends.


Lawn Mower Madness - Can The Right Brand Stop The Insanity

The two main types of lawn mowers are the push mower and the riding lawn mower. Lets look at the push mower first. There are three main categories to look into when choosing a push mower. They are gas powered, electric, and non-powered. Each has their own advantages and disadvantages. Looking at the riding lawn mower, these are generally chosen for larger yards that would take hours to cut with a push mower.

The brands of lawn mowers are as extensive as automobiles. It is almost like choosing a car really. You can pick out the horsepower, color and options just like an automobile. Some even cost as much. There are some men who really do not care what type of mower they get as long as it cuts the grass. Others are as particular as making sure it is bigger and better than the guy next door. Some men take so much pride in their lawn mowers that you would think they are comparing baby picture of their children.

Practicality and ease of use are two main keys on deciding what lawn best suits you. Of course you need to be practical when choosing a lawn mower. Yard size is very important thing to consider when purchasing your lawn mower. You certainly do not want to choose the model currently on sale when it would not be best lawn mower for the job. If a riding lawn mower is on sale for $250.00 less than the standard push mower next to it, you may look twice at the riding lawn mower.

If your yard size is 10 feet by 10 fen and you have five trees, maybe the riding lawn mower is not the best choice. If when looking at all of the models of lawn mowers at your disposal and some look like you need to take a two week study course on how to operate it, then maybe that lawn mower is not the best choice either. Price is also a huge factor when choosing a lawn mower. Some are priced very reasonable while others can be as expensive as the car in your driveway.

The thing to keep in mind is that this is a long-term purchase. With proper care and regular cleaning, your lawn mower can last your years and years. A little blade sharpening here and a hose off there can greatly extend the life of your lawn mower, therefore making your time spent with your lawn mower more rewarding.


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