What Are Seamless Gutters?

Gutters are often times overlooked by home owners but are one of the most important aspects to a home’s overall construction. Every home needs gutters for the main purpose of diverting water away from the foundation of the home. Traditional gutters that have not been properly installed can allow water to wash away the grading of the home, water then absorbs into the foundation, creating a big problem to the construction of the home.

The best way to combat this problem is to have true, seamless gutters installed on your home. What makes a true, seamless gutter? EXOVATIONS explains our seamless gutter system and why there are more to gutters than meet the eye.

The next time you’re outside your home, take a look up. If your gutters were installed prior to the purchase of the home, you may not know how well and by what process they were installed. It’s important to know that gutters have evolved over the years. Originally made of galvanized steel or aluminum, this dense material becomes even heavier during a heavy rain or through clogging of debris. The old system of hanging gutters was no improvement to the material. A spike and ferrule system included a nail through the front and back of the gutter into the fascia board causing the gutters to sag and leak. Gutter seams are the first areas that begin to leak and incorrect location and number of downspouts can cause foundation erosion to occur over time.

These days, seamless gutters are the norm in exterior renovation, although not all seamless gutters are made equally. True seamless gutters are made and extruded on site, at the location of the gutter installation. Yes, seamless gutters can be manufactured off site and transported to the job location, but this is not the ideal or recommended technique. Gutters that are made off site must be moved to the installation location, causing risk of damage to the gutter during transport. Often times, gutters are tied down and carried on top of a truck where they risk the chance of being bent, dented and damaged from the wind and elements. There is also a limit to the length of the gutter due to transportation constraints, thus causing the gutters to be soldered together prior to installation.

Since true seamless gutters are made on site, it will look as if the EXOVATIONS team has arrived at your home empty handed. This is not the case, as the extrusion process begins from a large roll of standard 24 gauge aluminum mounted inside the truck. As the reel unwinds, our six inch gutters are formed. EXOVATIONS utilizes a six inch gutter with a three by four inch downspout. Through our nearly twenty years of experience, we have found this size best handles heavy water flow. There is no risk of dents or holes with gutters by EXOVATIONS because we custom fit the gutters to the length of your home.

Another difference that sets our seamless gutters apart from traditional gutters is the use of the hidden hanger system. As opposed to the spike and ferrule system, a hidden fastener exists inside the sleeve of the gutter. This creates a lateral load that will prevent the gutter from sagging during heavy rainfall or debris collection. To avoid cleaning your gutters ever again, EXOVATIONS recommends installing LeafX along with our seamless gutters.

Typically, the EXOVATIONS team can have a whole house fitted and installed with seamless gutters in less than a day. This includes removing existing gutters and improvements needed to the fascia board. Often times, our home exterior experts will choose to move downspouts from their original location to a more suitable position to maximize their capabilities.

EXOVATIONS seamless gutters are backed by our Limited Lifetime Workmanship Warranty. When we say we say offer the best, professional installation service, we back that up with a guarantee on all of our work, seamless gutters included.

Contact EXOVATIONS for a free quote on our true, seamless gutters.

WHAT ARE PVC WINDOWS?

One of the advantages of working with EXOVATIONS when improving your home’s exterior is the amount of product options we provide our customers. We are able to give our customers several options for window replacement, one being cellular PVC. Let’s explore the difference between vinyl windows and cellular PVC; both made from the same material yet a very different finished product.

You may be familiar with PVC or polyvinyl chloride; commonly used in plumbing or electrical items. PVC is also a leading material for windows. PVC is essentially a combination of different compounds (plasticizers and pigments.) The main difference between PVC windows and vinyl windows is the manufacturing processes used to make the window components. Vinyl replacement windows are very light, simply because the window components are extruded hollow chambers. Vinyl replacement windows are very common and are considered a simple way to replace your old windows.

EXOVATIONS provides a vinyl window also made from PVC although manufactured through a different process. Unlike the extruded hollow vinyl, the window components for cellular PVC windows are solid. Cellular PVC window components feature a foam or cell-structure inside. One advantage to replacing your windows with cellular PVC is that they can be nailed, sawn and fabricated like wood. These windows look exactly like wood windows and cellular PVC are stronger than extruded vinyl windows which are of the thinner material. Cellular PVC takes vinyl a step further in strength and durability.

The material is not the only difference to consider when choosing between vinyl and cellular PVC replacement windows. Both have different qualities that are important in your decision making process, but when when contemplating between vinyl and cellular PVC, consider the following factors when making your choice.

One major variation is the style difference between the two windows. Cellular PVC windows have the same architectural moldings as traditional wood windows and resemble real wood where vinyl replacement windows do not.

When it comes to design, vinyl replacement windows come in two shades, white and almond or tan. These windows are not manufactured to be painted making vinyl windows a good choice for spaces where color is not a deciding factor. If you are replacing windows and wish to match your home’s trim, cellular PVC windows would be the better choice.

If going for energy efficiency, cellular PVC is one of the best choices available. U Value measures how well the window insulates and cellular PVC scores extremely well with a U Value of .48.  This is established by the National Fenestration Rating Council which helps consumers compare the performance of windows, doors and skylights.

EXOVATIONS is here to help you decide which replacement windows will work best for your home. We are able to answer any questions you may have and provide you with at-home consultation. Contact EXOVATIONS to schedule a free quote today!

Decking Materials Beyond Basic Lumber

 


Architects, interior designers, and more ∨

From Shabby Chic home accessories to contemporary furniture and wall mirrors, browse thousands of decorating ideas to inspire your next home project.
As you get ready to host an event, be sure you have enough side chairs and dishes for dinner guests, as well as enough bakeware and chopping boards for food preparation.

 

EXOVATIONS to exhibit at the 2014 North Atlanta Home Show

With the recent unseasonal Atlanta weather, we can all agree that we are ready for springtime! It’s hard to believe that spring is right around the corner and March 20th can’t come soon enough. To kick things off, EXOVATIONS will once again be showcasing our exterior home renovations products and services at the 17th Annual North Atlanta Home Show, February 21 -23 at the Gwinnett Center!

The NAHS is the largest of its kind outside the Atlanta perimeter. Our team is thrilled to exhibit along with other experts in the home improvement community and EXOVATIONS is even more excited to showcase what we have in store for your home exterior in 2014.

Drop by our mobile display at booth 440 on Friday February 21 from noon – 6 pm, Saturday February 22 from 10 am – 6 pm and Sunday February 23 from noon to 5 pm.

At this year’s NAHS, you can expect EXOVATIONS to present a little bit of all that we do for home exteriors but we’re especially excited to feature our TREX decking display with a stair light feature as well as our cedar posts with real copper roofing.

Our very own Candice Skinner will be available to answer any questions and schedule an appointment for a FREE Quote.

The EXOVATIONS team is looking forward to better weather and we’re ready to get busy improving your home exterior! Take a look at the highlights from the 2013 NAHS and we look forward to seeing you this weekend!

 

OUT WITH THE OLD

Window replacement is one of the biggest-grossing exterior remodeling jobs performed, according to Qualified Remodeler’s 2013 Exterior 200 list, in which 90 percent of remodelers participated in some sort of window-related remodel.

Although techniques for replacing windows vary based on the material and condition of the structure, window replacement will always elevate a home’s curb appeal and create a tighter assembly when properly installed.

Roone Unger, president of home exterior remodeler Exovations in Atlanta, notes three types of window replacement his company specializes in: a sash replacement kit for wood double-hung and stationary windows; a standard vinyl replacement window; and a PVC window unit, which includes a full-frame replacement.

Unger prefers to replace his clients’ windows from the inside, though he notes some contractors prefer doing it from the outside. When utilizing the sash replacement kit, Unger removes the window stop and pulls out the sash and balances, which are the tracks in which the sashes move up and down. He then installs a new balance system and sashes. “You’re replacing a single-pane window with an insulated window that ties in the existing frame and looks just like what you took out.” To use this method, however, the existing frame must be square and in good shape to ensure air and water tightness.

A vinyl replacement window is installed in a similar fashion. The entire enclosed vinyl replacement window is inserted into the hole left behind when the old unit is removed. “The existing wood frame stays in place so you still have the wood brick mold, wood sill and sill nosing on the exterior,” Unger explains. “You just take the vinyl-coated aluminum trim coil and mold and cap that. The whole exterior then becomes a maintenance-free area.”

Despite offering notable energy savings, the installation of vinyl replacement windows results in the loss of glass space, which some people don’t like, according to Unger. The self-enclosed units fit into the existing frame, which means the unit is adding frame to the window opening where glass had been prior to the replacement, he notes, estimating that clients usually will have only about 90 percent of the glass surface area they did before.

Full unit replacement is the most work intensive of the procedures. “We would take out the entire frame as well as the sashes and balances,” Unger says. To do so, the window replacement team removes the interior casing around the window, including the stool, then cuts the nails to pull out the entire jamb, frame, sashes and exterior casing. Extra fiberglass insulation is placed between the studs and window frame and the new low-E PVC window unit placed in that hole and the interior re-trimmed.

Each of these types of window replacements takes between 30 and 45 minutes to complete, making most whole-house window replacement jobs executable in one day. Unger notes many communities in the Atlanta area have aluminum windows, which he often replaces with these PVC windows.

A miter box is the only specialty tool that might be needed to perform these replacements, Unger says. “You’re cutting interior trim and sill so you have to be a fairly good trim carpenter, which I think most guys installing windows are,” he continues.

One of Unger’s primary tasks is to educate customers about what their choices are and offer guidance for determining the best fit. If someone has wood windows, for example, that have not been maintained and are suffering from rot, a full unit replacement is an appropriate application. For a well-maintained unit, however, where the customer is simply looking to increase energy efficiency, a sash replacement kit is a suitable fit.

Article written by Laurie Banyay, Managing Editor for Qualified Remodeler Magazine and previously posted here.

EXOVATIONS named as 5 star rated company by Talk Of The Town News!

Exovations of Atlanta, LLC has been selected as a 5 star rated company for 2014 by Talk of the Town News
As you recall, in 2013 EXOVATIONS was awarded the Talk of the Town Customer Satisfaction Award and through hard work and commitment the Exovations of Atlanta, LLC team has achieved a consecutive win in 2014.
This research is vital to business owners. Unlike other services that rate and posts customer satisfaction scores, Talk of the Town News reviews scores and data from user-review and business-review websites, social networks, business-rating services, and industry resources all by hand.
Each company receives one score for the year, and it is a stable rating that does not change until new research is done the following year. Thriving businesses know that the key to success is being in the forefront of consumers’ minds and getting noticed.
www.talkofthetownnews.com/awards2014/7702052995

Susan Singer
ssinger@talkofthetownnews.com
228-539-0300 Direct Line
877-498-6405 ext. 880

Talk of the Town News
Where the Stars in Customer Satisfaction Shine…
32000 Northwestern Hwy., Suite 128, Farmington Hills, MI 48334
www.talkofthetownnews.com
877.498.6405

Your New Favorite Room: The Great Outdoors

Bring the Indoors Out

 

Outdoor living not only provides additional living space for your family, but it can also add significant value to your home. Many homeowners first think about remodeling the interior of their home, while interior renovation increases home value, many home owners and prospective home buyers are looking for unique outdoor living areas. There are a number of things to consider as you look to expand your home’s outdoor living space while improving the overall value.

 

Keep the heat in (or out)

Energy efficient windows and exterior doors can not only cut the energy consumption cost, but adds significant curb appeal to your home. Cellular PVC windows are the alternative to wood windows, offering a no-rot, natural wood aesthetic. Cellular PVC windows are stronger than vinyl windows, offer more glass space, are lower in maintenance and can be painted to match your home’s color scheme. Energy efficiency is also a considering factor for many prospective home buyers.

 

Outside entertainment

When improving your home’s exterior, consider building or replacing a deck or porch. Decks should be made for enjoyment but also built to last. Consider a high quality, wood-alternative decking material like composite decking. Composite decking withstands the Georgia heat and humidity as well as frost during winter months. Composite decking is mildew and insect resistant and maintains its color and beauty for years to come. Decks and porches can be built in a variety of designs, from contemporary to coastal, matching the style of your home.

 

Outdoor Living with Trex decking products provided to you by EXOVATIONS

Outdoor Living with Trex decking products provided to you by EXOVATIONS

Your new favorite room

With any luck, Georgia’s unseasonal rainfall in 2013 didn’t put a stop to enjoying the great outdoors. If it did and you were rained out from relaxing in your outside living space, consider installing an under deck ceiling system. Transform your deck to a waterproof outdoor living area for your family. Painted to match your home exterior, this rustproof aluminum system adds hours of entertainment to your outdoor living space. Never let the rain or extreme heat stop another cookout or party. Enjoy your deck year round with an under deck ceiling system.

 

When it comes to your outdoor living space, don’t limit your creativity. Everything you think can’t be done can be done. Talk to a certified exterior remodeling contractor for home exterior remodeling ideas. Doing so will help you get a better sense of what is possible for outdoor living. An outside living space can transform the style of your home and will bring fun and relaxation for years to come.

 

How to Protect Your Basement from Hurricanes, Blizzards & Ice This Winter

Think April showers pose the biggest threat to your nice, dry basement? Think again. While spring is perhaps most notorious for rain, between now and April, hurricanes, blizzards and ice loom can cause power outages and rapidly rising water levels, wreaking havoc on defenseless basements. And considering this winter is expected to bring abnormally cool temperatures and high precipitation to many parts of the U.S., basement waterproofing should be taken seriously.

Don’t let your basement fall victim to flooding. Let’s take a look at each disastrous scenario followed by tips on preparing your basement and advice on what to do if, despite your best efforts, flooding does occur.

Basement Enemy #1: Hurricanes
The hurricane season in the Atlantic officially runs from June 1 to November 30. Torrential rains, high winds and storm surges are all characteristics of a hurricane. Protecting your property, including your basement, is important to weathering a hurricane. Make sure your home’s siding is in a good shape and your basement windows are well-sealed. High winds and long-lasting rainfall can do serious damage both to the inside and outside of your home.

Basement Enemy #2: Blizzards
Heavy snow, mixed with water already in the ground, can be a recipe for disaster for your basement, especially if it is prone to flooding. And extended power outages can add up to big problems if you don’t have a backup power source for your sump pump.

Basement Enemy #3: Ice
Although less obvious, ice is just as dangerous to a basement as blizzards and hurricanes. Like blizzards, ice can cause extended power outages, but it is also capable of weakening the integrity of your foundation. See, when water freezes it expands unlike many other substances that contract. This means that water that froze inside the cracks of your foundation is likely to make these cracks bigger and make its way in eventually.

10 Tips to Prepare Your Basement before a Hurricane, Blizzard or an Ice Storm
Protect valuable items stored in your basement by moving them off the basement floor and placing inside plastic bins.
• Examine the drains near your exterior basement doors and windows and remove any debris to prevent clogging.
• Roll up and store area rugs on a higher level.
• Clean your gutters and downspouts to allow the water to flow away from the sides of your home and its foundation. If they are damaged, now is the good time to proceed with gutter replacement.
• Test your sump pump to make sure it is working and make sure you have a battery backup or a generator ready in case of a power outage.
• Reshape the landscaping around the foundation to make sure the ground slopes away from the foundation.
• If previous water damage has caused any interior cracks, caulk them to prevent more water from entering through the same spot.
• If an entire wall is or has been damp from previous flooding, consider having a licensed waterproofing contractor inspect and repair the damage.

What to Do If Flooding Does Occur
First of all, don’t panic. Follow these five simple steps to stay safe and minimize further damage.

• Turn off power to your basement and wear rubber boots while walking through the basement in case there are live wires (and because it wet!)
• Use a wet vacuum cleaner to suck up puddles in your basement.
• Once the water has been removed, use fans and humidifiers to get the air circulating throughout the basement to prevent mold.
• If at any time you begin to feel unsafe, call a professional to pump out water and repair your basement.
• Wipe down and disinfect anything that comes in contact with the water, including washers and dryers and furniture too large to remove. Some of the heavily damaged items might have to be tossed.

Preparedness is the key if you want your basement to make it dry through the unpredictable fall and winter weather. Remember that generators and sump pumps tend to sell out fast before a major storm and contractors are busy, so don’t wait till the last minute.

Patios, Porches and Pergolas, Oh My!

In a recent article posted by My Home Ideas.com 101 patios, porches and pergolas were showcased for their outdoor living and entertaining splendor. We picked our top ten to share with all of you for some remodeling and decorating tips.

10. Rustic Wooden Pergola

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This rustic wooden charm enchants the back yard with an area designated for your heart’s desire; be it an outdoor party or a quiet night gazing at the stars.

9. Patriotic Patio

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While we all may not have this view from our backyard, creating a decorative space for entertaining over holidays such as Memorial Day, The Fourth of July and Labor Day is easily displayed by changing up some patio furniture colors and adding some red accents such as flowers, wreaths and complete with a beautiful American flag.

8. Family Firepit

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The family that plays together, stays together. A picture is worth one thousand words and this picture captures an outdoor family adventure centered around this backyard firepit. Grab the s’mores and some tunes and you have the perfect evening for just your family or entertaining guests.

7. Perfect Porch

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This back porch says, ” Sit and stay a while.” Entertaining is made easy with this design for the television placed over the fireplace and cozy seating for a  few guests or the entire family. It allows you to sit and feast on the afternoon sun setting in the evening as well as enjoy a few good meals with good company.

6. Extended Coverage Pergola = Extended Fun!

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If you are working with a limited budget, but envision something more for your outdoors, consider an extended pergola for your next project. Many companies offer DIY kits for a low cost and with little labor to install. A pergola by name is a garden feature forming a shaded walkway, but a free standing pergola such as this is known for providing a sitting area that allows for breeze and light sun, but offers protection from the harsh glare of direct sunlight.

5. Enclosed Porch

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An enclosed porch offers indoor and outdoor living in one unique solution. A rainy day suddenly isn’t so bad when you can escape to this room and read, relax or spend a day playing family games. Even these beautiful family pets are enjoying the comfort of this inviting space.

4. Front Porch/Portico

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If your home doesn’t currently have a friendly covered greeting area ( some say front porch and others say portico) you can always add this option to the front of your home. Adding a portico or front porch area is a common remodeling project desired by many homeowners to vamp the look of their home or serve as a need for keeping their guests dry during rain. This space has been designed to welcome guests and generate a relaxing and welcoming environment.

3. Southern Charm

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Nothing says, ” Southern” like sweet tea and a lazy day on the porch. This chic look is perfect for the back porch area of a home for dining and hosting guests or for just sitting and watching the clouds drift by on a warm summer’s day.

2. Swaying To The Breeze

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This enchanted sitting area is ideal for a vacation home or beach scene but it’s also perfect for the open porch on the back of your home. Enjoy a nap with the breeze of a cool Fall day or relax to your favorite music for an escape from reality.

1. Screened Porch

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Whether you are screening in an existing porch or adding a screened porch onto your home, this option is always a win for outdoor living. You get the best of both worlds for a space that exposes you to the great outdoors while keeping you comfortable from extreme temperatures or weather. This particular design was our favorite for the color combinations and product selections.