April 25th is National Hug your Plumber Day. When you need a plumber, you usually need one ASAP!! I would say that a good chunk of our customers that walk into our hardware store are seeking help with some type current plumbing issue or seeking a replacement plumbing fitting. That being said, this might be a “fitting” blog post to “plunge” into today.
As we all know, Home maintenance is ongoing, and can get expensive. Being proactive with your maintenance tasks, can give you an opportunity to move forward with other projects.
No worries y’all, just following these tips could add to your existing knowledge base about plumbing 🪠 so let’s plunge into the tips!
1. Know where your main water shutoff is located. Enough said! If you don’t know where your water shutoff is located, then make it your mission to find out ASAP! A water issue can be controlled much easier when you know where the main shutoff is found. Instead of a looming disaster with water everywhere inside your home, you can divert the danger by immediately turning the water off.
2. Don’t use bleach to clean with regularly if you are on a septic tank system(Think about the toilet bowl drop ins and cleaning chemicals you are using the most often.) . The bleach can kill off the good bacteria in your system. When the good bacteria are destroyed, your tank won’t be able to break down waste effectively, meaning a clogged septic tank could be inevitable. 😳
3. What goes in must come out… and everything is not flushable! Yes, to most folks this is common sense. But everyone doesn’t know that baby wipes, Q-tips, grease, feminine hygiene products, diapers, paper towels, tissues are not flushable or acceptable for drains! Yes, even coffee grounds can clump up as well as cat litter and can lead to a clog. All of these items can reek havoc on your pipes/toilets and cost you a small fortune in order to get rid of a massive clog!
4. When you do have a clog, deal with IT effectively. Using a Plunger or a snake is your first line of attack against a clog.Powerful Chemicals are secondary… especially if your plumbing lines are older. The harsh chemicals can break down your current, older plumbing lines even more quickly. 😳 AND if you have to use a chemical agent, read the directions and use it as directed!!! Be safe!
5. Check out your Insulation around water lines in basements and crawl space. If you don’t like what see, it is a good idea, especially during the extremely cold months to add insulation. Don’t forget to also check your Well pumps and pressure tanks, they should also have insulation around them too.
6. Disconnect your water hose at the end of the growing season and cover your outdoor faucets. Outdoor faucets will freeze and create greater problems for you!
7. Do a bit of Reconnaissance work as a homeowner… a visual inspection of your plumbing . It is necessary as a homeowner- check your whole house water filters, look for any leaky hoses, or visible water around base of toilet( this can become a costly repair) are your toilets flushing properly, do you see leaks around hot water heater, visible water under your sink??? The small cost of a roll of plumbers tape is definitely worth the investment to add to your home toolbox. Lastly, Some leaks are not visible… pay close attention to your water bill each month to examine any spikes in your monthly costs. If you see a noticeable increase, definitely get this checked out!
8. Know when to call in an expert. Even the best DIY homeowners often know their limits and will call in the professionals when necessary.
If you are inside shopping at our hardware store, you will probably hear the phone ring ☎️. We field lots of questions each and every day of the week. Here’s a list of the top 5 most popular questions that we address on the phone and in personal conversations with our customers
1. What time ⏰ do you close today ???
AND along the same lines…
Are y’all still closing early on Wednesday afternoons? NO! We have regular store hours on Wednesday and have had normal store hours on Wednesday afternoon for about 7 years now.
2. Can I park in the back parking lot and come in the back door? 🚪Yes! Absolutely! The lot is public parking and parking is also available on 10th Street in front of our store.
3. Is it possible for you to order this item for me???💻 Yes! I’ll be glad to check our current inventory and get a price on that item for you.
4. Can you make me a key?🔑 If you have an existing key, then we probably can… no key, call Bill, the locksmith next door.
5. How’s business going? 🛍️We need your support each and every day. We appreciate your loyalty and making purchases inside our small business so that we can continue to add new products, staff and grow our economic community in Wilkes. We want to be here for YOU years down the road. When you shop local, your money stays in our community. Please support all small businesses( retail, restaurants, and service providers) in our two towns. They need your continued support always! Local supports local!!!
Did that opening title have you think about the classic song 🎵 from MC Hammer??? This blog post isn’t intended to discuss music today BUT to get y’all thinking about those surfaces in your home that you DON’T need to touch before you disinfect.
Can you easily identify the “high-touch surfaces” in your home? Do a quick visual survey of your surroundings inside your home.
Whoever does the cleaning in your home is likely to catch several of these “high-touchsurfaces” on a day to day basis. I hope that these tips for finding “high-touch” areas will be useful.
Spring is less than 30 days away now and it may have you thinking about a good healthy dose of cleaning. So let’s begin with a few basics below.
What are “high-touch surfaces”??? These are the surfaces in your home that receive the most direct daily contact with your family. High-touch surfaces are the areas where dirt, dust, and germs if left unchecked, will thrive. High-touch surfaces should be regularly cleaned and disinfected daily.
When I use the term disinfect, here’s the gist of what happens when you do that…to disinfect is using a chemical cleaner to remove viruses and bacteria.
Now the quick breakdown of TEN high-touch surfaces, to disinfect inside your home. These TEN areas are based upon my own personal experience as a mom AND also as one who actively works in and participates in the hardware life. I’ll be curious to know if you found several of your “high-touch” surfaces in your quick surroundings survey of your own home, are you a novice or a pro??? Or maybe somewhere in between???
Top Ten Hardware Life High-Touch Surfaces
1. Think about Small and large appliances (ex. coffee pot, microwave, refrigerator) that are frequently used by each member of the family each day. Don’t forget about things like a can opener, or even the knife block!
2. Door knobs and light switches, & even your house keys!
3. The Kitchen Sink. Yes, it is definite.. a highly used kitchen item and don’t forget to clean the faucet handles.
4. The Countertop. This is where food gets cooked & consumed… often my counter gets scattered with keys, phones, and mail. Our kitchen counter is a drop zone of sorts. Yikes! Keys and cellphones are also high-touch! 😳
5. The Bathroom. Clean and disinfect fixtures, sinks, toilet seat, and toilet handle.
6. Remote control for tv, cell phones, iPads, game controllers.
7. Kitchen chairs and table. If you use it daily, then clean it often. Think about where your family meals occur everyday and clean and disinfect often.
8. Toys and play areas for your children. Kids play hard all day, and make sure to clean toys that are often used by your child everyday and disinfect often.
9. The Pantry. Think about the door knob, and other touchable areas outside/ inside (if you and have kids, or grandkids, they use it frequently throughout the day)
10. The Laundry Room. Wipe down your appliances AND clean your laundry basket! A laundry basket holds all of your dirty clothes AND clean clothes. Wipe them down often. I have separate baskets for clean and dirty clothes but, I regularly clean all of my laundry baskets.
Now that you have my top ten list, what should you use to disinfect effectively?
Here are a few tips that you can use for cleaning “high-touch” areas. A more detailed guide can be found with CDC recommendations on cleaning those frequently used areas in your home and workplace. The internet is a plethora of information on the subject.
The Hardware Life Daily Cleaning Tips
1. Begin with a clean surface. Clean area first by removing any visible dirt or dust. I keep a good multi-surface spray handy for quick cleanups.
2. Use gloves … a pair of disposable gloves might work best especially when disinfecting surfaces. Throw away once you finish cleaning.
3. Pick Easy disinfectant choices… Clorox or Lysol wipes. These will do the job quickly and easily.
5. Read the label on your disinfectant carefully. Do you need to rinse after application? Allow for drying time.
4. The Multi surface Cleaner… Keep a good multi-surface spray handy for quick cleanups. I keep one upstairs and have at least one multi surface spray available for cleaning in the downstairs areas my home.
Lastly, let’s evaluate some “germy“ cleaning utensils and those you might not think to clean.
1. The Sponge.. if you use a sponge to clean, let your nose to guide in your decision to keep or throw out. Your nose knows! If the sponge smells, then it is time to stop by our hardware store and pick up a new one.
2. The kitchen brush- if you have one of these brushes to scrub surfaces in your kitchen, sanitizing it is a must! Put it in the dishwasher after each use.
3. The toilet brush. It should be disinfected weekly or after each use. Rinse well after cleaning toilet, apply a disinfectant spray and allow to dry before replacing into toilet brush cover. Some experts say to replace your toilet brush every 6 months.
4. The plunger. Clean and disinfect after each use and allow to dry.
5. The bucket. If you carry your cleaning essentials inside your bucket as you clean at home, don’t forget to regularly disinfect your bucket.
6. The Mop. Let your nose be the guide again! If it smells, it is time for a new one. Regardless of the type of mop you use, the mop should be clean and disinfected. Your floors will be as clean as your mop. Some recommendations are to replace your mop every 3 months depending on the style of your mop.
I found this quote as I was working on this blog post, “our house is clean enough to be healthy, but dirty enough to be happy”. This reigns true in our house. Things are never perfect … shoes are often in the floor, keys are on the kitchen counter, blankets are thrown about on the couch, and two sweet pups roam absolutely everywhere. But it is HOME! I clean intentionally now that I’m more aware of surfaces that require an bit of extra “love and work”. Deep cleaning occurs when I can get to it. Whether you are a novice or a pro at finding all the frequently used areas of your home, home should always be a place a of comfort and joy. Happy Spring Cleaning Y’all!
Work… the mechanical manifestation of energy, according to science. Work it could be said, is the “nuts and bolts “ of what we do each and every day. After all, nuts and bolts are not the whole of a project, they are only a portion of a project.
The successful concept of work today creates within the soul a feeling of pride, satisfaction of a job well done, and contribution back into your greater community in some type of capacity. Today I’m offering y’all an inside look at our hardware work… the “nuts and bolts” view of what we do each day.
Walking inside Wilkes County Hardware may take you back into a time of nostalgia… viewing our old building, wood stove, historic elevator, or even remembering a time when hardware stores used to be full service for the customer. We still do that each and every day. Our customers always come first! Customers are the essential element in our business, and that is why we are customer service oriented in what we do! Wilkes County Hardware is definitely more than a place to go pick up a few nuts and bolts.
Yes, we have several folks who stop by to shop our extensive selection of nuts 🔩 and bolts… whether you are looking to purchase one or two or even multiple boxes. But did you know that we do the following things as well??
1. Key duplication
2. Kerosene wick replacement
3. Threading and pipe cutting
4. Glass cutting up to 36 inches
5. Chain cut to exact length
6. Basic lamp repair
7. Tool handle replacement
8. Pool water testing for free!
9. Roll pipe cut to length (most hardware retailers sell the entire roll) and copper pipe
10. Gas and plumbing fittings … including a good selection of Pex and Shark Bite
11. Vast selection of furnace filters
12. Window screen repair
13. Knife and scissor sharpening
As y’all can see we work hard to be a full service hardware store for our customers. Our goal is to keep our customers coming back to us for all of the things that they need for any project. Thank you for being a great part of what we do each and every day whether it is a purchase of nuts and bolts, a key or even a bag of bird seed. We couldn’t be here without you!
So there it is… the “nuts and bolts” of the hardware life daily work. Stop by and see us soon. We appreciate your support of our small business. YOU are the part that holds all of our work together in our nuts and bolts analogy. Thank you for joining us in our journey of the hardware life for the last seven years.
The colors of Fall is distinctively different from any other season of the year. The Fall season is truly a mosaic of colors of the rainbow… green, gold, red, orange, & brown set against the bright blue sky.
Our natural world which we have grown accustomed to during the summer, suddenly changes into a magical world of autumnal colors, happening almost overnight it seems. I’m sharing my favorite, everyday hardware life Fall photos with y’all today to celebrate the season of Fall using the caption of Fall is…
Living the "hardwarelife", join us in our journey of hardware store ownership