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Options for Fireplaces In Your Home

A fireplace in the home is both invitingly beautiful and comfortable.  Long winter nights here in Montana can be enjoyed in front of a warm blazing fire.  And today’s modern homeowner has multiple options to choose from when considering either the purchase of a new fireplace, or the replacement of one.

While technically there are many different types of fireplaces today (There are even options like electrical fireplaces which have a certain inherent beauty and warmth to them, and can be easily purchased at almost any big box-type store today) for the purposes of this article, we’re only going to be considering both the wood burning and the gas fireplace.

Wood burning fireplaces and wood burning stoves are classic and can conjure a bit of nostalgia for many.  There are pros and cons to this type of fireplace, with the major con being that a wood burning fireplace needs a chimney for venting, so, if your home doesn’t have a chimney already in place, the cost to build one will be considerable.
Also, wood is not a readily available resource and you will either have to go somewhere to purchase it, or you will have to gather it yourself with a permit.  But to use wood as a fuel source is also a pro, considering that wood gathered legally with a permit can also be considered free.
A wood burning stove insert into an old fireplace box is also another option.  Also, wood burning stoves can be placed in most areas of the home, and don’t require a full-scale chimney for venting.  Also, the wood burning fireplace will require more maintenance than the gas fireplace, and this maintenance should be performed by a professional.

For all of your roofing and home construction needs, please contact Bruce Tall Construction today!

Gas Fireplaces are becoming the norm, and for a good reason: the fuel source is already active in most any new home.  Connect to the gas line with the fireplace and you’re up and running.  Gas inserts have become common additions to homes with older fireplace boxes; this allows the homeowner to keep the charm of the original fireplace.  A major pro to a gas fireplace is that it does not require a full-scale chimney for venting.

Our recommendation is to consider the type of fuel that most makes sense for you to burn.  If you don’t want the hassle of wood, go with the gas fireplace.  However, if you would like the gravitas of wood crackling on a winter’s night, then choose the wood burning fireplace.

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Replacing Vinyl Siding Panels

Vinyl Siding is the most ubiquitous siding material covering today’s modern home.  It’s popular because it’s made in a variety of colors, and it’s easily reproduced.  Also, when vinyl is damaged it can be easily replaced.

Repairing damaged vinyl siding is an easy job that most any homeowner, with an hour or two of free time in a day, can do.  To start, go outside and look at how the panels of vinyl lock together: the siding’s strength is in it’s simple click-together design, connecting with the panel both above and below it.  The panel itself is anchored to the wall with nails. 

When you determine the area that encompasses the entire damaged panel, you will need to remove that panel from the panel below it.  To do this, you will need a toll called a zip tool, which is a thin piece of metal with a hook at the end.  This hook grabs the connection point on the siding, separating the panels.  Pulling the zip tool along underneath the panel of siding, the panel will separate from the one below it.  When the bottom of the panel is free, use the zip tool to separate the damaged panel from the panel above it.  Then remove the nails holding up the panel.

Once the panel’s free, it’s time to make a decision: will you use a brand new panel fresh from the store to fill the gap, or will you use a panel from an inconspicuous location on another wall of the home?  Most likely that will be determined by the age of the siding and just how weathered the colors are.  A new panel will still be vibrant with color from the factory, so it might stand out against an older set of weathered panels.  Removing a panel from somewhere else on the home—think a side yard that no one sees directly—will increase the chance that the colors will match.  Then, use the new panel as a replacement to the replacement, and most likely no one will ever know.

Putting in a new vinyl panel is as simple as removing the old one.  To start, connect the bottom of the old panel to the panel below it.  You should only have to pull up on the panel for it to lock into place.  Then lift the panel into position and anchor it to the wall with nails.  With the panel anchored, use the zip tool to pull down the lip of the panel above it, and lock the two in place.      

Contact Bruce Tall Construction today for all of your roofing and siding needs!