Design Considerations for an L-Shaped Outdoor Kitchen

outdoor kitchen, exterior kitchenSpring will be here in a few more weeks. Now is the time to prep or even fully renovate your outdoor living space. An exterior kitchen is a noteworthy investment, particularly if you enjoy barbecuing and inviting guests over. An L-shaped outdoor kitchen is one design style to consider.

Why an L-Shaped Outdoor Kitchen?

The L-shaped kitchen design has long been in use and favored by homeowners for its simplicity. Furthermore, it’s also efficient because it establishes a kitchen work triangle. That is, primary components like the fridge, stove, and sink are all within easy reach of one another. The entire kitchen can be confined to the L-shape positioned within a section of the patio perimeter. This leaves the rest of the area free as a social space.

With that in mind, let’s explore some of the design ideas.

Warm and Rustic

Most outdoor appliances like grills and smokers have stainless steel finishes to prevent rust and corrosion. However, the steel can also invoke an industrial feel. Fortunately, this can easily be offset in an outdoor decorating elements. Use décor consisting of plants or items with a deep wood finish. Adding plenty of bright accent colors helps as well.

Countertops

You can also create balance and contrast from the stainless-steel appliances by selecting a stone countertop. Other choices include granite, wood, or other natural materials.

Rooftop Addition

Envelope the outdoor kitchen with a patio rooftop. Aside from protection from the elements, it also gives a sense of peace to the space. We use the term “rooftop” loosely here. It can be a permanent structure or a simple large fabric awning.

We Install Outdoor Kitchen Accessories

This is the ideal time of year to contact All Points Heating for major renovations both outdoors and indoors. The latter can consist of fireplaces, stoves, and other amenities. An L-shaped outdoor kitchen is not only functional but also visually pleasing.

Residential Outdoor Accessories

Serving customers from Arlington to Renton and Bellevue.  Furthermore, we service the areas of Seattle, Redmond, Bothell, Edmonds, Lynnwood, Everett, Marysville, Mill Creek, Woodinville, Kirkland, Mercer Island and the surrounding area.

Why You Should Be Concerned if Your Heater’s Boiler Is Kettling

boiler kettlingAs with the rest of your home, the HVAC, system and the water heater are prone to malfunction from time to time. One such problem is boiler kettling. This is a potentially dangerous situation that requires immediate homeowner attention.

What Is Boiler Kettling?

Kettling occurs when pressure builds up in the system’s heat exchanger. This is the part that heats the water as it flows through the system. Kettling takes place as hard water enters the system and leaves deposits in the pipes. This restricts flow much the same way clogged arteries restrict blood flow to the heart. The restricted flow causes heat to become trapped in the boiler; this is where the trouble starts.

Why Kettling Is Dangerous

Despite its name, a boiler doesn’t actually boil water. It heats it to temperatures below the boiling point before distribution throughout the home. The buildup of heat causes the water to evaporate into steam. The steam accumulating in the heat exchanger causes the entire boiler to rumble.

Some homeowners fear that this can cause the boiler to explode. Most modern systems have safety mechanisms that automatically shut the system off if the heat exceeds a set threshold. However, the safety mechanism itself isn’t 100% fail-proof and can malfunction.

Boiler Maintenance

A technician will need to access the heat exchanger and remove the accumulated mineral deposits. This will also include a checkup to rule out other potential causes for the kettling. To prevent the problem from recurring, consider installing a water softener or water treatment system.

We Prevent Boiler Kettling

Boiler and furnace maintenance are not DIY jobs and require professional repair. Leave the duty to All Points Heating. As the winter chill sets in, be sure your heater is in tip-top shape to prevent boiler kettling.

Furnace and Boiler Maintenance

Serving customers from Arlington to Renton and Bellevue to Shoreline, including Seattle, Redmond, Bothell, Edmonds, Lynnwood, Everett, Marysville, Mill Creek, Woodinville, Kirkland, Mercer Island and the surrounding area.

Public Indoor Air Quality: How to Improve the Air in Your Place of Business

indoor air qualityCustomer wellness is a priority whether you run a restaurant, retail store, or other service industry. Fortunately, it’s not hard to improve public indoor air quality. Making some minor adjustments can make a major difference in the well-being of your customers and employees.

Revelations About Public Indoor Air Quality

In one study, commercial areas were found to have a significant level of volatile organic compounds and other microbiological contaminants. The study, entitled Ventilation and Indoor Air Quality in Retail Stores, focused mainly on the retail sector. However, we believe it applies across all industries.

The study revealed that contaminants can be reduced significantly by having ample ventilation and air filtration. Proper HVAC maintenance is necessary. Commercial HVAC and exhaust systems are required in some industries, particularly those that serve food, such as restaurants and pubs. Continue Reading →

Commercial Refrigerator Odor Removal: How to Eliminate Foul Smells

refrigerator odorAfter several years of use, you may notice that the refrigerator for your restaurant or food plant begins to develop unpleasant smells. Commercial refrigerator odor removal is doable and doesn’t necessarily require professional assistance, but it does require time and attention to detail.

What Causes the Odor?

The odor can be attributed to a number of causes. The main culprit is the food itself. Perishable goods like milk can leak and spoil. The odor may also be an indicator that mold and bacteria is growing somewhere inside the unit. Either way, the matter requires your immediate attention.

Empty and Clean

Before you clean, empty the shelves of all consumable items and store them in another temperature-appropriate room. Once everything is safely out of the refrigerator, scrub the walls and floor using a simple solution of soap and water. To enhance this solution’s ability to remove odors add white vinegar and baking soda to the solution. Both are known for their odor-removing properties. Once every area is thoroughly scrubbed, let the unit fully air out before returning the food. Continue Reading →

Common Thermostat Problems and Their Impact on Home Cooling

Common thermostat problemsAn abrupt malfunction in your HVAC system can cause alarm. The issue may very well be with the air conditioning or heating unit itself. However, it could also be due to a faulty thermostat. Here’s how to identify common thermostat problems and how they inhibit optimal HVAC operation.

AC Won’t Start or Won’t Turn Off

If the furnace/AC won’t start at all, this may be due to a wiring defect within the thermostat. When the wiring is loose, the thermostat can’t read the room temperatures correctly and may fail to switch on the cooling or heating.

Bad wiring may also lead to the opposite problem, in which the HVAC units won’t switch off. It’s also possible the thermostat is improperly calibrated and sending the wrong instructions to the HVAC system. Continue Reading →

How to Clean a Dirty Furnace Flame Sensor

furnace flame sensor, flame sensorWith summer just about over and the arrival of fall around the corner, you need to be sure your furnace is in working order. When the furnace switches on, you may find that it only runs for a few seconds before shutting off. One possible cause may be a dirty furnace flame sensor.

What Is a Furnace Flame Sensor?

The flame sensor is a thin metallic rod located on the burner assembly and in front of the pilot flame. The furnace flame sensor determines whether a flame is present when the gas is on. Without the sensor, the pilot light could go out, and the furnace could emit harmful gas.

The sensor acts as a safety device. When it detects that the flame isn’t on, it shuts down the entire unit to prevent dangerous gas emissions.

Signs of a Dirty Flame Sensor

The flame sensor can become corroded due to carbon buildup from the flame. This can cause the sensor to fail. If the burner light goes out within seconds of switching on the unit, this is a telltale sign of a dirty sensor. If you see soot clearly covering the sensor, then it’s time for a cleaning. Continue Reading →

Four Summer Barbecue Theme Ideas

barbecue themeWe are moving towards the end of the summer. Nevertheless, now is a better time than ever for a backyard barbecue. Break out your barbecue grill and explore these summer barbecue theme ideas. Make the most of outdoor living during this time of year.

1. All American Barbecue

Even though we’re past the 4th of July, American pride never goes out of style. Adorn your property with red, white, and blue decorations. Scatter miniature American flags over the lawn and bunting over the deck railings. For the grub, serve American-style foods, such as hamburgers, hotdogs, chicken wings, and apple pie.

2. Beach Barbecue

You don’t have to live near the coast to have a beach barbecue. Decorate the table with little seashells and starfish. You can also fill a clear vase with sand for use as a table centerpiece. If kids are in attendance, create a sandpit play area complete with plastic buckets and shovels. For food, serve grilled seafood and tropical fruits such as pineapple and papaya. Continue Reading →

Summer Commercial Refrigerator Maintenance: How to Keep Your Unit in Peak Condition

commercial refrigerator maintenance, refrigerator maintenance, commercial refrigeratorProperly functioning commercial refrigeration is crucial for any business that stores perishable goods. This is especially critical in the warmest time of year. A broken system can result in spoiled goods totaling thousands of dollars. It goes without saying that summer commercial refrigerator maintenance is vital.

Why Summer Commercial Refrigerator Maintenance Matters

During cooler months, lower ambient temperatures keep storage items cool even if the fridge has minor issues. Unfortunately, this benefit goes out the window in the summer months. This is why pre-summer and summer maintenance is the best prevention. It reduces chances of requiring a last-minute emergency repair. Continue Reading →

Summer HVAC Tips for Maximum Air Efficiency

summer HVAC tips, summer air conditioningSummer is here along with the scorching heat. For homes, this means ramping up the air conditioner. Most homeowners, though, also fear drastically higher utility bills. The good news is you can keep the cost to a minimum by following some simple summer HVAC tips.

1. Change the Filter

Changing the air filter is one of the few acceptable summer air conditioning maintenance practices for DIYers. If the AC uses a disposable filter, change it at least once a month. Change it more often if you have pets or are a smoker. Too much dust restricts the flow of cool air.

2. Use a Programmable Thermostat

Manage your HVAC with smart technology. Customize your summer air conditioning schedule even when you’re not at home. If nobody’s home, use your mobile device to switch off the AC. Alternatively, turn it down and let the indoor temperature rise a bit.

3. Use Fans

We especially recommend ceiling fans. Here’s a little-known trick: set the fan to rotate clockwise during summer. This causes air to flow downward instead of flowing upwards where it warms the upper levels of the home.

4. Utilize Curtain and Drapes

How is heat making its way indoors? Heat enters when sunrays penetrate the windows. This causes the HVAC to work harder to combat the incoming heat. Incorporate blinds and drapes and completely conceal the windows to block out sunrays.

5. Reduce Appliance Heat

Unbeknownst to most homeowners, appliances are the biggest generators of indoor heat, which subsequently forces the AC to work harder. Instead of using your oven, for example, consider using an outdoor appliance like a backyard grill.

Apply These Summer HVAC Tips Today

The warmest time of year is upon us. Call All Points Heating to find out if your HVAC is in tiptop shape. Improve indoor air quality this season by following these summer HVAC tips for maximum home comfort.

HVAC Maintenance for Snohomish Residences

Serving customers from Arlington to Renton and Bellevue to Shoreline, including Seattle, Redmond, Bothell, Edmonds, Lynnwood, Everett, Marysville, Mill Creek, Woodinville, Kirkland, Mercer Island and the surrounding area.

How Often Should You Change a Mobile Home Furnace Filter?

mobile home furnace filter, furnace filterAll furnaces have a filter. This is true for furnaces in different kinds of residences, including mobile homes. You need to change the filter regularly to facilitate smooth airflow and keep the heat circulating. So, how often should you change a mobile home furnace filter?

How Are Mobile Home Furnace Filters Different?

Like other homes, mobile homes may have an electric or gas furnace. The ductwork in mobile homes, though, is typically narrower. In addition, the furnace filters are also installed at the grill. This differs from conventional furnaces, which have a separate compartment between the ductwork and furnace for storing the filter.

How Often Should You Change the Filter?

Like any other filter, change it out according to the manufacturer’s recommendations. Usually, this is every one to three months. You will need to change the filter more frequently if you have pets, or if someone is a smoker. More frequent changing is also necessary if an occupant has allergies. Continue Reading →