Docstoc

Tips

Document Sample
Tips Powered By Docstoc
					  Tips
   &
Specifics


            White Lightning Development, LLC
#52221 – PO Box 34628 – Seattle – Washington – 98124-1628
                           HARDWOOD FLOORING SERVICE

Most new homeowners prefer hardwood floors to other products available as floor surfaces. Your
new home features solid oak hardwood floors with a “Swedish” finish. While hardwood floors are
beautiful, they are still wood and require special care.

Please remember that hardwood floors are a natural product. This means your floor may expand
and contract with the seasons. For further information, please read the “Hardwood Floor Checklist”
included in your New Homeowners Packet. If you feel your floor is experiencing excessive
movement during warranty period, we will be happy to inspect them and make one of the following
recommendations:

   If we believe the floors are reflecting normal seasonal changes, we will suggest monitoring them
    for six months to allow the expansion or contraction to adjust. If this natural movement disturbs
    you, we suggest a humidifier to help control the moisture in the home.
   If we believe the floors are not within industry standards and excessive gaps, cracking, or
    warping, we will send the installer out to perform repairs if desired. The procedure for this type
    of repair is to fill gaps, sand ridges, and spot refinish the affected area(s). However, we do warn
    against requesting this type of repair unless absolutely necessary, because as natural
    expansion and contraction occurs, the repaired areas can push out the filling and/or gaps
    appear in the sanded areas.

An advantage of hardwood flooring is that damage can be easily repaired. Should your floor need
sanding or just another topcoat, most floor-covering professional are trained for this work. The
nature of solid wood flooring provides great durability and longevity.

Although your hardwood floor may take care and is less predictable than a man made product,
most homeowners feel the beauty of their floors make them a worthwhile choice.

PLEASE NOTE: Some types of wood, especially Cherry, will change color with age. Cherry floors
generally tend to darken with age. Therefore we recommend that throw rugs be moved often during
the first few years to prevent “shadows” and color variations from place to place.




                              White Lightning Development, LLC
                  #52221 – PO Box 34628 – Seattle – Washington – 98124-1628
                            HARDWOOD FLOOR CHECKLIST

All hardwood flooring used in building your new home are manufactured under the strict guidelines of
the National Oak Flooring Association. No two boards are alike giving a unique floor to each owner.

Expansion & Contractions

Flooring being a product of nature will react to the season of condition it is exposed to. For
example, if we have a very cold and dry winter condition, we can expect to develop some cracking
or separation between boards. When this happens, it is much the same feeling our lips have when
the air is dry, so we use chapstick. Your floor is asking for moisture that it receive under normal
conditions.

Another reaction to nature is that if the floor receives too much humidity, it can expand or warp.
This is a result of high humidity, which can happen when the floor is exposed to too much water
from a leak, damp mopping or even lack of heat i.e. if the house is left unoccupied for a long period
of times.

When you inspect your floor with the builder, you will not likely notice any of the results of
expansion and contraction but they are there and it continues to happen. If the humidity in your
home stays the same, as the day the floor was inspected, the changes would go by unnoticed.
However, should any of the conditions discussed under expansions and contractions occur, you will
notice a change in your floor. This change of nature cannot be a condition under which a builder
can warrant the product. The only recourse would be to install a humidifier into the heating system.
The humidifier will help to control the heat and humidity during all seasons. Even then, should the
floor be exposed to excessive moisture or very dry conditions some change in size of the flooring
should be expected.

Floor Finish

Most hardwood floors today are finished with a “Swedish” finish, which is a surface finish that does
not require waxing, but does require some care and concern.

A new home comes with new landscaping and as a result mud and dirt can be tracked into the
home, which will cause wear on the finish. Also, furniture without felt glides will cause scratches on
the floor. In the kitchen’s entries and powder rooms where the floors are exposed to water and
heavy traffic, you can expect to have much more wear than in the formal living room or the den.

In heavy traffic areas it is a good idea to have area rugs to help keep the floor clean. Also, it is a
good idea to have a small area rug in front of sinks and dishwashers since there is an excess
amount of foot scuffle in those areas. There is no set rule as to how long a floor finish will remain
new and the care given to the floor will determine the life of the finish.

Heavy traffic areas can be re-coated when they receive wear but wear is not a fault of the builder and
no warranty is given for wear. Cleaning your floor should consist of vacuuming and occasionally
using a white vinegar and water solution. The mop should be fairly dry because too much water
could warp the floor.




                              White Lightning Development, LLC
                  #52221 – PO Box 34628 – Seattle – Washington – 98124-1628
Winter Humidity Conditions

As a result of very cold and dry conditions, our office in regards to shrinkage in hardwood flooring
has received numerous inquiries. Since the problem has become widespread, we offer the following
information for your use.

Dry cold winter conditions deprive us of the majority of moisture normally contained in our air. This
fact coupled with the “tightness" of our newer super insulated homes and the increased efficiency of
modern heating systems especially heat pumps and forced air natural gas, have contributed to a
dramatically reduced humidity factor in our living environments. With cold dry winter weathe r
coupled with a continuos operation of heating equipment we can expect the development of cracks
in wood flooring as well as other wood and trim items. This is normal and an inescapable rule of
nature. When woods gains moisture it expands, when it loses moisture it contracts. There is no
controlling this operation of physics. The only thing we can control, thanks to modern technology,
is the humidity of the environment in which we live. Thus the quickest resolution to shrinkage
problems in any given household, especially those with heat pump or natural gas furnaces is the
installation of a humidifier directly into the heating system. This resolution has been extremely
successful in several different instances.

DO NOT FILL CRACKS AND RECOAT DURING DRY CLIMATIC CONDITIONS!

When moisture is reintroduced into our climate with the coming warmer spring and summer
weather, any filler applied will be forced out of the cracks as the wood undergoes its normal
expansion. Also, the finish will have to be repaired. Our best recommendation to those who do not
want a humidifier installed in their heating system is to wait until spring and summer to allow their
floors to return to a more natural state before effecting any kind of repair. Most often one complete
heating season will allow the floor to remain much more stable.




                              White Lightning Development, LLC
                  #52221 – PO Box 34628 – Seattle – Washington – 98124-1628
                                CARPET SOIL FILTRATION

In the past couple of years we have had an increasing number of calls from homeowners with
concerns over “patterned soiling” of the carpet. These patterns are generally described as “dark
lines” in the carpet. The patterns can show anywhere, but we generally get the calls in instances
where they appear in areas, which do not get much traffic. These areas include perimeter walls,
under draperies, or at doorways of seldom, used rooms and where doors are generally kept shut.

This soiling is not the result of a defect in the carpet or construction of the home. In this area the
effect is called “soil filtration.” In many parts of the country they are called “soot lines” and in
others, “smog lines.” By whatever name, they are the result of carpet fibers acting as a filter of the
various pollutants or particles of dust, etc. in the home airflow. If you haven’t done so recently,
check the filters in your return air registers and clean them when you do. You will get a good idea
of how much debris does circulate in the air. The reason for the lines more often appearing at
windows or doorways probably has to do with the fact that the airflow itself is compressed as it
moves under draperies and generally the bottoms and tops. When the condition appears at the
perimeter walls it is generally on the sunny side of the house. We can only surmise that the
heating and cooling of these exterior walls between day and night causes convective air flow to
sweep back and forth in fairly regular patterns and that particles in the air tend to settle out as the
air moves up or down the wall.

This condition is not newly recognized. We suspect that decorating trends have more to do with
the fact that more people today seem to notice it. In the 1960’s & 1970’s the dark colors were very
much in preference. Through the 1980’s it was “earth tones,” predominantly beiges and grays, but
still medium in color. The preferences today are very much “light and bright.” You see this not just
in carpet, but throughout the house in the white painted millwork and light stain choices in cabinets,
floors and doors. Obviously, the lighter the carpet color, the more apt you are t o notice soiling.

How effectively the patterns can be cleaned, once noticed, depends a great deal on how much of
the stain is carbon. This particular pollutant is the most difficult to remove. Hint: be sure to have
your fireplace cleaned regularly and do not leave dampers open when not in use.

The best approach is preventative maintenance, particularly if you have a very light or bright carpet.
Contact a reputable, professional cleaning company for suggestions on specific carpet care. Clean
your air return filters regularly. Keep your fireboxes clean between burnings and have your flues
professionally cleaned annually.

Barring any evidence of negligence or non-compliance with the applicable codes in effect at the time
your home was built, the occurrence of this condition is not a matter of warranty.




                              White Lightning Development, LLC
                  #52221 – PO Box 34628 – Seattle – Washington – 98124-1628
                                      TILE AND GROUT

One of the nice features of your new home is the use of tile on various surfaces. Tile is often the
preferred choice for both appearance and wear. As you know, tile has been is use for many
generations yet modern technology has not solved all of its shortcomings. Like most things in your
new home, tile will need maintenance and care.

In particular, the grout used with the tile is not a perfect product. It is hard and yet it is porous.
This means it will crack and stain and almost nothing will stop this. Currently we believe the best
care for tile and grout is to purchase and apply a sealer such as one you might buy at a hardware
store. As always, read the instructions, and spot test an area first. Sealing usually helps with
staining for a limited period of time. A great time to do the first application is before you use your
new surfaces.

The grout will certainly crack from time to time. It is very easy to apply a small amount of grout to
the cracks and cure this problem. Small containers of your grout were left in your new home for this
purpose. We suggest a very small bead of clear caulk be applied to the seam between countertops
and backsplashes for additional protection.




                              White Lightning Development, LLC
                  #52221 – PO Box 34628 – Seattle – Washington – 98124-1628
                                         TREE POLICY

We strive to maintain as many natural trees on each lot as practical. This is our effort to be
environmentally aware and create a more aesthetically pleasing neighborhood.

Unfortunately, occasionally one of these trees does not survive for any number of reason. Since a
tree’s health is governed mainly by nature, we do not warranty their health. However, if you notice
one of your trees is looking unhealthy, please report it within 100 days of closing. If reported during
this time frame we will examine the tree and make one of the following recommendations:

   If it’s symptoms are unclear, we may suggest to monitor it and review again in 6 months.
   If it is in a safe location and poses no danger to property or person, let nature take its course.
   If it is dead or definitely dying through no fault of the homeowner and is in a dangerous location,
    we will reimburse the homeowners for ½ the cost of having the tree cut down (up to $200.00).
    Please call us for our approval before ordering the work.

If a problem tree is NOT reported within the first 100 days of closing, responsibility falls to the
homeowner for any conditions or costs of removal.

In either case, we urge you to be sensible and take action quickly if a potentially dangerous
situation exists.

We hope you will not experience this situation, and we have taken precautions to protect the health
of your trees while your lot was under construction.




                              White Lightning Development, LLC
                  #52221 – PO Box 34628 – Seattle – Washington – 98124-1628

				
DOCUMENT INFO