Kettler Forlines Homes Blog

Blog Archive for December, 2016

A strong foundation is the start of a quality home.

Categories: Brightwell Crossing, Tips, Uncategorized | Posted: December 13, 2016 | Comments Off on A strong foundation is the start of a quality home.

When we start building your home, Kettler Forlines Homes invests in a foundation that is superior to others. After all, this foundation supports your home, so there should never be a concern with the structural integrity of your new home.

We have been working with our foundation contractor, The Bartley Corporation, for 35 years. We rely on their knowledge, experience, and expertise—and they’ve never let us down. We chose The Bartley Corporation because they take extra care with their foundations. Here are some of the ways that Bartley builds a stronger foundation for every Kettler Forlines Home:

  • A high-range water reducer in the concrete admixture increases the strength and reduces the curing time, while requiring less water in the mix.
  • Most builders meet building codes with a foundation wall that is 8 inches thick. We require 10-inch walls—25% thicker.
  • Building code requires concrete that is rated for 2,500 pounds per square inch (psi). Kettler Forlines Homes exceeds that minimum by using 3,500 psi for a stronger wall system.
  • Bartley’s factory-trained waterproofing mechanics apply a waterproofing spray for a greater level of moisture protection.
  • The drainage system is engineered to intercept water that may seep down the outside wall or under the slab due to groundwater conditions. This type of drainage provides extra protection for your home’s foundation.

Minor cracking is normal in concrete floors and walls. Foundation cracks can occur from shrinkage as the concrete cures, as a result of the water in the concrete’s mix drying. It can also result from thermal contraction or the weight of the applied load. You’ll most likely spot concrete cracks near beam pockets, window and door openings, corners, and expansion joints in concrete floors.

While you might not like the look of a crack—and we certainly don’t—they aren’t necessarily a sign that your structure is unsafe or damaged.

Our quality starts from the ground up. We have higher standards than other builders, because we have higher expectations for ourselves. If you’re thinking about a new home in the Maryland region, take the time to understand some of the differences that contribute to the quality craftsmanship that goes into every Kettler Forlines Home.

Safety tips for exterior holiday lighting

Categories: Brightwell Crossing, Tips, Uncategorized | Posted: December 7, 2016 | Comments Off on Safety tips for exterior holiday lighting

The holiday season is here. People are decorating their homes with sparkling lights that add so much sparkle to the night view.

That also means pulling out ladders, hanging lights, and connecting a growing web of extension cords.

Before you end up experiencing something like Clark Griswold’s exterior holiday lighting nightmare, follow a few safety tips.

Strings of lights
• Use only lights that are certified for use outdoors.
• Check the connection, sockets, and plugs. Never use a string of lights with cracked sockets or exposed wires.
• Hang the light strings on hooks. Don’t staple or nail them, which can damage the protective insulation.
• Use LED lights instead of incandescent. They use less electricity, last longer, and run cooler.

Extension cords
• Use only those cords that are certified by an independent testing lab (like UL).
• Choose a cord that is long enough, rather than connecting multiple cords.
• Do not staple or nail the extension cord because it can damage the insulation that protects the wiring.
• If you’re using the extension cord outdoors, make sure it’s approved for that use.
• Inspect any cord (new or used) before plugging it in, checking for fraying, cracks, or exposed wire.
• Make sure the amperage of the extension cord is compatible with the amperage of your lights.

Installation
• Do not use a metal ladder when hanging lights outdoors, because metal conducts electricity. Choose a fiberglass or wooden ladder instead.
• Stay at least 10 feet away from any power lines.
• Plug into ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCI). If your outlets are not GFCI, add a portable outdoor GFCI to handle your outdoor electrical needs.
• Do not overload your electrical outlets. The increased electricity can cause overheating, which leads to an electrical fire.

From gentle twinkling to a bright display, use caution with your exterior lighting so you can enjoy a safe holiday!