Question: “Paige, How often should air conditioning ducts be cleaned and is there a way to do it myself? We bought a house and we don't know if they have been cleaned."
Do not clean the ducts yourself! A certified, trustworthy company should cost $500- $1,500.
Here are a couple easy signs to determine if you need to have your air conditioning ducts cleaned:
1. Someone in your household is very allergic to dust or has a condition like cystic fibrosis that you need to keep the inside as clean as possible.
2. If you smell mold or mildew when you turn on your system. This is a sign that something has gotten into your ducts and is causing moisture.
3. If you see visible particles coming out any of your vents. This is best to see in the sunlight so, pick a well-lit room to test.
To keep your HVAC system as clean as possible without a professional cleaning:
1. Clean your vents.
Do this by using a screwdriver, unscrewing the two screws holding up the vent. Look inside. If there is any dirt, dust, or particles, use your vacuum to vacuum out the little box that the vent covers. Don’t vacuum any further than that box. Take the vent to the sink and wash it.
2. Find your intake grill.
· This will be larger and can be located on a wall or ceiling.
· If it is visibly dirty, take the vacuum with the brush attachment and vacuum off the dust.
· Then use car wax, a microfiber towel and a butter knife to clean in between each line of the grill. You will be amazed at how much dirt comes off, and cleaning in the future will be much easier since wax doesn’t allow the dust to sit – it will travel to the air filter where it belongs.
*You usually need to do this in place because most of these just hinge out, and don’t actually come off the wall. *
3. MOST IMPORTANT! Change out your air filter.
Change it every 3 months (each change of the season). Make sure you measure your intake grill to assure you get the right size and change them out. Easy!
Question: “Orly, could you show me the proper technique to sewing a blind stitch?"
A blind stitch is the type of stitch you’ll use anytime you’re sewing closed a pillow, sewing the edge of a scarf, etc. This is great from pillowcases to pant legs. This is going to elevate your projects and make them look professional and it can all be done by hand!
1. Press the seams so the seam allowance sits inside the turned-out casing you’ve sewn.
2. With a knot tied at the end of your thread, pierce your needle up through the underneath of your creased seam where you want your stitch to begin.
3. Pull your thread all the way through until the knot pulls taut.
4. Cross over and pierce the opposite fold’s seam crease from underneath.
5. Cross over, moving slightly forward and pierce the opposite seam, pull taut.
6. Repeat this until you’ve closed the entire opening.
7. Tie a knot and push into the seam so it isn’t visible.
Question: “What are your best tips for house training? I have a 4-month old Yorkie-Poo, Daisy, she still has several accidents. We have treid many different things but she isn't letting us know when she needs to go!"
At 4-months-old, that is totally normal for a young dog not to have control of her bladder quite yet. There are a few things that help with this:
1. It’s important to get on a strict routine: after your dog wakes up and after she eats especially.
2. Crate training is also key. Start this as soon as you can. I use an X-pen for my dogs so they can roam around more and still have a space.
3. The dog diaper is a short-term fix as you can see with Granny. Straining unusual hard time check with the vet.