TIPS FROM FLAT ANDY
Craft-Bilt Manufacturing Company thanks you for choosing a Betterliving® Patio or Sunroom. The components used to build your room were lovingly made by our team here in Souderton, Pennsylvania. We are proud of our attention to detail. We work hard to make sure you are 100% satisfied with the strength and quality of our materials. We would like to offer you these suggestions for the maintenance of your new patio room.
- The first time you clean the glass, use a mild soap and water solution; dishwashing liquid is ideal, or vinegar and water. After the first washing, glass may be cleaned with your regular glass cleaner.
- Please do not use harsh cleaners, chemicals, abrasives or power wash the glass or frames.
- Keep the weep holes (small holes punched in the bottom track) free of dirt and debris by vacuuming.
- Visually inspect your patio room every spring to see if adjustments are needed. Ask your dealer about a routine service program.
- To keep your doors, windows and screens rolling smoothly, keep the tracks free of dirt and debris, and clean the stainless steel track by wiping with a non-abrasive cleaner a couple times a year. The wheels are lubricated and factory sealed to eliminate the need for maintenance.
- Condensation is a natural result of moisture in the air and varies with changes in temperature or humidity.
- Products made from aluminum or vinyl (car engines, aluminum heating registers and siding), may create noises resulting from natural expansion and contraction as temperatures change. This is a natural occurrence and not a structural problem.
Above all, enjoy your new Betterliving room. And please stop by and visit our factory if you are ever in the area.
WHAT IS THE BEST WAY TO CLEAN
THE OUTSIDE WALLS AND ROOF OF OUR SUNROOM?
Cleaning of Factory Pre-painted Aluminum Surfaces on Patio Rooms and Sunrooms
Your Betterliving Sunroom components, roof panels and wall system are permanently painted in the factory.
Though factory applied, pre-painted finishes such as those applied to the roof and wall panels of Betterliving aluminum patio rooms and sunrooms are very durable and will last many years, eventually it may be desirable to thoroughly clean the wall or roof surfaces. “Chalk,” the paint film decomposition product caused by sunlight and moisture, occurs to greater or lesser degree as a direct function of paint finish system quality. Chalk and dirt can be removed in most cases, and the cleaning procedures described below will successfully remove film chalk and dirt build-up on the aluminum surfaces of your sunroom.
Some aluminum patio room owners choose to implement a regular exterior maintenance or cleaning program, particularly in unusually dirt laden or aggressive environments. Although not necessary, routine maintenance can keep your sunroom looking bright and new throughout the 50 years of your patio room manufacturer’s warranty!
In many situations, low pressure power washing with plain water may be adequate. In situations where heavy dirt deposits dull the paint surface, a long handle soft bristle brush and a solution of water and detergent may be used. In still other situations, it may be necessary to use a detergent solution in the power washer to achieve the desired results. NOTE: Power washing is not recommended for windows and doors in your sun room.
Strong solvent and abrasive cleaners should NOT be used on factory painted panels!
One example of a basic detergent cleaning solution would be one-third cup of Tide® detergent dissolved in one gallon of water.
If black/green mildew is apparent, the above detergent solution should be modified as follows:
One-third cup detergent (e.g. Tide® or equivalent)
Two-thirds cup tri-sodium phosphate (available at hardware stores)
One quart 5% sodium hypochlorite solution (e.g. Clorox® or equivalent)
Three quarts of water
Consult maintenance professionals and/or label instructions for proper handling and disposal of washing solution. However, the last and very important step in any cleaning procedure should be thorough rinsing with clear water.
It is also advisable to test any cleaning procedure on a representative, small area for the desired results before initiating work on a larger scale.
Caulking compounds, oil, grease, tar, was and similar substances can usually be removed with a cloth dampened with mineral spirits. Spot clean contaminated areas only. Again, since different paint finishes show different solvent sensitivities, test a representative small area for the desired result before initiating work on a larger scale. Follow any solvent cleaning procedure with a water-detergent washing and thorough clear water rinsing.
A NOTE ABOUT CONDENSATION
Winter air might be cold and dry outside, but chances are the air inside your home has quite the opposite problem! Winter is the worst time of the year for high humidity problems indoors, leading to condensation, possible damage of window sills and walls, the growth of mold and mildew and even health problems. But there are many practical ways you can combat high humidity and make your home environment more comfortable.
Moisture is most often a winter problem because people seal themselves up inside from the chilly temperatures. Homeowners spend more time indoors during the winter and rarely open windows. Residents are trapped with the same contaminated moist air until spring.
Newer homes tend to have even greater moisture problems because of improvements in construction. Plastic sheeting and other materials used to make the home more energy efficient also prevent clean, healthy air from getting inside. Over-insulating an attic and improper roof venting may also become problematic, preventing proper airflow.
Dean Soell, a seasoned home inspector from Fargo, North Dakota, says "If your roof is properly vented, it takes a lot of the moisture out of the house. It comes down to having your roof evaluated."
Eliminating the source of moisture in your home is impossible. Water is added to the air by everyday activities as simple as breathing, bathing or showering, boiling water, using a dishwasher, taking a dip in the hot tub, having plants, and the list goes on.
A comfortable humidity level for a home is about 60 percent, meaning the air is holding slightly more than half of what it can before water would be released as condensation. If you do not have a humidistat in your home to provide a humidity level reading, it's probably a good time to get one.
You will notice if you have a humidity problem if there is excessive condensation on your window panes, sills and other surrounding frames. Check your outside doors for proper sealing and condensation on the door bottom. Doors may be difficult to open or even freeze shut. The moisture will gather wherever there's a cooler spot, such as along a patio door. You'll see ice and condensation there.
Other locations to check for moisture problems include the bathroom, kitchen and anywhere dusty or dirty. "Moisture finds dirt," says Soell.
Sunrooms, because of their walls of glass, are a prime place to find condensation during the winter months. Warm air coming from the house into an unheated sunroom condenses quickly on the expansive glass windows. Finding a way to block the warm air, cracking the windows, or using an air exchanger, can help alleviate condensation in sun rooms.
Source: Lake and Home Magazine