A Spark From The Sun

Green Mountain Energy began in Vermont in 1997 with a simple but powerful mission: Use the power of consumer choice to change the way power is made. Green Mountain Energy is one of the nations longest serving renewable energy retailer. Growing Energy solutions, and a clean energy future is what more people want these days! Offering information on Solar, wind, geothermal and more Green Mountain Energy offers several options for the residential consumer.

Customers on the SolarSPARC® (Smart People Accelerating Renewable Change) plan help accelerate the growth, adoption, and innovation of solar energy.

Lets Talk Solar Energy

With East Coast storms brewing yearly, you may ask yourself is Solar a good source of renewable energy. Solar panels do work in the winter because solar energy is created by sunlight  not heat. So even though it may get cold or snowy where you here in upstate New York, as long as there’s sunlight, solar panels will produce energy. In some situations, solar panels actually work better in the wintertime because the cooler temperatures help boost their efficiency. Solar panels are a cost-efficient form of alternative energy, with an overwhelming percentage of new systems being installed in tangent with the traditional electrical grid.

Solar panel installation

NIST (The National Institute of Standards and Technology’s) Test House Blows Past Goals In One-Year Trial.

Despite 38 days when the test house’s solar panels were covered with snow or ice, the NIST sun-powered generation system produced 13,577 kilowatt hours of energy. That’s 491 kilowatt hours more than used by the house and its occupants, a computer-simulated family of two working parents and two children, ages 8 and 14.

You do have to physically remove snow if there is excessive accumulation. There are special snow rakes (snow brum snow pro) to remove snow from Solar panels without damaging them, but you may also want to call a local professional to help depending on the height and slope of your roof. Remember the few extra tens of kWh you can generate in a day are not worth a trip to the hospital.

As long as a structure is connected to the power grid, electricity will not be interrupted when snow accumulation makes solar energy unattainable. With continued research and installations, solar power remains a viable option for Americans hoping to utilize reusable energy.

Stop at Booth 144, for more information, are you ready to join them? Let Green Mountain Energy Customize a plan just for you!

As always stay tuned for more Adventures in Styleland…

Sweetly,

Michele Conti

Asphalt Offers Driveway Durability

The majority of commercial and residential driveways are finished with either asphalt or concrete. Both are cost-effective, but asphalt comes with more benefits. If you’re paving a new driveway or refinishing and existing one you’re probably wondering about the relative benefits of asphalt over concrete. L.Browe Asphalt Services is ready to answer your questions.

An asphalt driveway can usually be laid in one or two days, depending on the size of the project. Concrete, on the other hand, typically takes twice as long to lay and even longer to set. Depending on the season, asphalt driveways can be ready for use in as little as two days after completion, whereas concrete can take up to a week to cure.

Unlike concrete, asphalt is not subject to surface flaking caused by poor installation, incorrect preparations of the mixture or the application of salts to melt ice and snow. Known as ‘spalling,’ this surface flaking is an ongoing problem with many concrete driveways, especially those that were hastily installed. Given its flexibility, asphalt is also considerably less likely than pavement to crack over time.

If your asphalt driveway does start to show some lineal cracking, you can repair these easily and inexpensively. The crack sealant products you need are widely available through home improvement retailers. They don’t cost very much and can easily be applied on your own, even if you have absolutely no previous paving expertise.

In addition, regular preventative maintenance, like crack filling and seal-coating, can extend the lifespan of your asphalt driveway to 20 years or more. Concrete is more difficult to maintain, because it cannot be heated and repaired with the same ease as asphalt pavement.

Need help maintaining your asphalt? Give L. Browe a call 518 479-1400 Janeen Browe will be happy to get you started with a free estimate!

 

Stay tuned for more Adventures in Styleland…

 

Sweetly,

Michele Conti

 

Renovation Financing You Can Bank On…

Well, it’s been a few days since I’ve posted here on the blog, and what better way to say hello again than to share some before and after photos.

The secret to getting a renovation just right is to do your homework!  Research is the key to getting what you want. Study magazines and books to get an idea of the look you want. Visit friends, family members and colleagues who have renovated recently. Consider your lifestyle and the needs of your family, both in the short and long term. Discuss your project with a designer or decorator for contractor recommendations.

Living Room Before
Living Room After

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Once you have a firm idea of the kind of renovation you would like to undertake, it is time to decide how you are going to pay for it. Trustco Bank is at The Home Expo to help with questions about how to finance your next project. If you are thinking of using outside funds, discuss your borrowing needs and options with Trustco Bank. You will probably find that there are many financing possibilities to consider, from personal loans and lines of credit to home equity loans and homeowner’s mortgages.

Are you planning a renovation? Times Union Home Expo is offering smart solutions for your home project! Whether you are building your dream home or simply sprucing up your present home, Home Expo 2018 has the consumer in mind!

There will be hundreds of exciting exhibits, that will display the best in home products, technology and services of every description. Visit one-on-one with builders, mortgage lenders, realtors, decorators, landscapers and more. From hardwood flooring to home theater systems, you can find the latest in product technology and design.

We look forward to seeing you at our new location, the 2018 Times Union Home Expo will be hosted exclusively at the new Albany Capital Center 55 Eagle St Albany NY 12207.

DATES & HOURS

Friday, February 9, 2018 | 3:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Saturday, February 10, 2018 | 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Sunday, February 11, 2018 | 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

See you Soon! Stay tuned for more Adventures in Styleland…

 

XOXO

Michele Conti

Designs by Michele

 

Dream Decks

When you want to enjoy more outdoor time a deck, pergola, or patio may be just what you need. There are many styles that can help you achieve the beautiful and relaxing outdoor space you’re trying to create. For example, you can choose from a multi-level deck, a gazebo, curved deck or an elegant pergola. RM Fence and Deck are at The Times Union Home Expo this year to create your outdoor space.

It’s kind of hard to enjoy your deck when it’s wide open to neighbors. Maybe you want to enjoy an intimate summer evening, or sunbath free from onlookers’. Or maybe you just prefer the comfortable feeling of knowing nobody can see you even if you’re just eating or reading. Love the thought of a fence but don’t want to feel boxed in or claustrophobic? One thing you can do is build the top of the six-foot fence with a foot of lattice, keeping the airy feeling while still maintaining privacy.

These are a handful of things you can do improve the privacy of your backyard living space other than adding bushes to trim or trees that can become overgrown. A tall solid fence is probably the best way to completely isolate your deck or patio for maximum privacy.  Ask RM Fence and Deck for information on different types of fencing material, they can help you choose what style and material will suit your needs.

Decks can be free standing or detached from the rest of your home or you can choose a deck that is attached, such as a wrap-around deck. When you choose RM Fence and Deck, you’ll have plenty of options regarding the design of your outdoor space as well as the materials that are used to build it.

Where will your new deck be? RM Fence and Deck will be in booth 205, on the second floor of the Albany Capital Center, come talk with their friendly staff and start building your dream deck.

Stay Tuned for more Adventures in Styleland…

XOXO

Michele Conti

Designs by Michele