Brief Guide To Replacing Your Garage Door Opener

Garage door openers are one of those devices that we all take for granted – that is, until they fail. Then it’s a scramble to get it fixed so that you can get your car out and in for the day without having to open the door manually. It certainly can be stressful. I say this because I’ve been there too.

To make it even more stressful, when you go to buy a replacement you’ll notice that there are quite a few different options you can buy, each with their own set of features. It’s highly unlikely you’ve researched garage door openers until now, when you’re in dire need of purchasing one. How can you possibly go about making the right decision under such stress?

The good news is that you really can’t go wrong, and the great news is that if you’ve found this article before you make a purchase you just might be able to navigate the aisles with confidence.


One thing that you’ll notice right away is that there are quite a few brands that all offer relatively similar products. The main brands to stick to for best results are Chamberlain, Liftmaster, and Ryobi. The first two tend to specialize in garage door openers, whereas the latter makes garage door openers amongst a myriad of power tools and home devices. All have good reviews, so if you stick to these three you’ll probably be in good shape.

There is reason to get behind a brand that specializes in garage door openers such as Chamberlain or LiftMaster. This is their only game, so they’re going to make their best effort. That’s not to take away from the years of expertise that a brand like Ryobi can accumulate from making a variety of products, though. Their engineers have seen all sorts of products over the years, so they know what different components are best suited for different purposes.

Mode of Action

The other main buying factor that you’ll want to consider is how the garage door opener actually lifts the door from a mechanical point of view. The three most common designs you’ll come across are chain drive, belt drive, and direct drive.

Chain drive is certainly the most affordable option, and probably the design you’ll come across most often. To be honest, they’ll probably be completely fine for your needs. However, chains have a lot of potential breakage points so it’s entirely possible that you may need to make repairs more quickly than other designs. They are also probably the loudest type of garage door opener you can get, in case that is of any concern to you.

Belt drive designs are very similar to chain drive designs, except that the use a belt rather than a chain. Belts are much quieter in general and tend to be able to withstand less of a load than a chain would. If for any reason the garage door was trying to raise against a load (say, for example, the garage door is locked), there is the chance that the belt might break and need replacement. They also can wear out over time much like the alternator belt on your car would. Luckily, belts are fairly easy to swap out.

The Kingpin design in the world of garage door openers is the direct drive. These are going to give you the best of all worlds with quiet operation and durability. You won’t get out of maintaining them though as they’ll still need lubrication, but if you have a bit of extra cash it may be worth springing for one of these. They’re not too expensive after all.

Hopefully this article helps you quickly narrow down your search in your time of need. I know this situation can be frustrating, and any little bit of guidance can be helpful. I hope you make it through with minimal issue!

Tips For Buying Your Teenager an Electric Skateboard

As anyone with a teenager knows, teens are always looking for new exciting activities. Many teens are now asking their parents to get them electric skateboards. An electric skateboard is battery powered and has a motor which propels the skateboard forward. Most electric skateboards have a handheld remote which can be used to control speed. It takes a little practice, but they are a fun way to get around. Here are some tips for buying your teen an electric skateboard.

1) Make sure it is easy to carry.

Some electric skateboards are bulky and heavy. This makes them awkward to carry when needed. Making it easy to carry will help keep your teen motivated to keep using the electric skateboard.

2) Check for weight capacity.

Every skateboard has a different weight capacity. Every teenager is a different size. Make sure whatever electric skateboard you choose can handle your teen’s weight. Keep in mind they are still growing and give yourself some cushion!

3) Find out how noisy it is.

You know your teen is going to be riding this thing around everywhere, especially for the first few weeks. Make sure it is one that is not too noisy so that while they are driving their new electric skateboard around your yard, they aren’t driving you crazy!

4) Get some good wheels.

First, pay attention to how durable the wheels are. Teens are rough with their things, and you want this electric skateboard to last for more than a few rides. It is worth paying a little more if necessary to have wheels that will last. Wheels made out of urethane are reported to be the most durable wheels.

Also, pay attention to wheel size. Smaller wheels will limit what kind of terrain the board can be used on. If you live in a place where everything is paved, this may not be such a big deal. If you know your teen will be using the board in the grass or another type of terrain, look for larger wheels. Larger wheels will be able to handle rougher terrain and will give your teen more options when it comes to where they use their new board.

5) Check the battery life.

Some electric boards have batteries that only last a short time before needing to be recharged. You don’t want your teen showing up every 15 minutes to charge their battery. That will get annoying to both of you! Make sure to research and read up to verify that the batteries hold a charge for a long period of time so that your teen can fully utilize their board.

6) Find a company that offers a solid warranty and good customer support.

You know your teen is going to ride their electric skateboard ALL of the time! It is inevitable that there will eventually be some kind of issue that needs to be dealt with, whether it is a question you have about use or an issue with the electric skateboard working correctly. By ensuring you pick a company that offers an excellent warranty, you can make sure that should any issue arise with the electric skateboard working properly it will be handled quickly. Also, you want a company that offers great customer support, so you can ask the questions you need to without spending your whole day on hold.

I hope these tips help you as you find the perfect electric skateboard for your teen. Now, don’t forget to get your teen some safety gear as well!

How To Avoid Poor Quality Dog Foods For Your Pup

Your new furry friend deserves the best of everything, including the best food. Unfortunately, not all dog food is created equal, and you might feel overwhelmed when you see the number of options available. Misleading marketing can make it difficult to sort out the truth about any given product, and food labels are never easy to read. However, with a few tips and your veterinarian’s advice, you can steer clear of the duds and find the perfect dog food for your pup.

Select “complete and balanced” dog foods

These magic words are not just catchy advertising; they are the official seal from the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) that a certain food contains the nutrients that dogs need. This is called the nutritional adequacy statement, and it can help you feel at ease that the food you are giving your puppy is well-rounded. The AAFCO upholds strict standards for pet foods, and its seal of approval is a good first step in evaluating a food for your dog.

Look for the age, weight and breed recommendations

Some dog owners mistakenly believe that their puppy is just a smaller version of an adult dog, but dogs need different nutrient formulations at different stages of their lives. Puppies, for instance, need a more calorie-dense diet to fuel their growing bodies. A quality dog food label will clearly state that it is suitable for puppies or for “all life stages.”

Avoid grain-free foods

Unless your pup has been officially diagnosed with a grain allergy, don’t fall for the hype of grain-free dog food. Dogs are not strict carnivores and thrive on a diet that includes meat, grains, fruits and vegetables. These ingredients are not “fillers,” they are essential to your puppy’s health and well-being. In fact, scientists are currently exploring an apparent link between grain-free diets and heart disease in some dog breeds.

Know the code words of nutritional labeling

The wording used to describe any given food can actually tell you how much of it is included in the formula. For example, simple words like “beef” or “chicken” indicate that the protein makes up 95% of the total product. Additional words like “dinner,” “platter,” “entree,” or “nuggets” are used when the protein comprises 25% of the total product. The word “with” is used to indicate that the ingredient comprises 3% of the formula. Finally, stay far away from products that only list beef or chicken “flavoring.” This means that only a trace amount is present. A trace amount of protein certainly is not enough for your growing pup!

Ask the pet food company about sourcing

Though quality control and sourcing information is not required on pet food labels, you can always call the pet food company and inquire. Speaking with a customer service representative about where ingredients are sourced from can really tell you a lot about a company’s reputability and openness. If the company has nothing to hide, they will be all too glad to tell you about the high-quality ingredients they use.

The food that you choose for your puppy can have a huge impact on their life. Selecting a high-quality food that is rich in nutrients can help your pup grow strong, avoid disease, and live a long and happy life. Though a low-quality food may be temptingly cheap, it may cost you more in the end through veterinarian’s bills and worry over your beloved pup. Armed with these tips and a little guidance from your trusted veterinarian, you are ready to pick a brand and formula that not only fits your budget but also fits your pup’s needs.

Tips for Removing Stubborn Grease Build-Up From Your Kitchen Stove

You use your stove every day and do you best to wipe it clean when all is said and done. Even with the best of your efforts, you’re bound to see grease building up on the surface on the surface. That doesn’t mean it is time to buy a new stove. With a few tips that are tried and true, you can make your stove look like new all over again. Say goodbye to that pesky grease by giving these helpful hints a try.

Try Baking Soda

If you would prefer to go with a natural method, you can use baking soda. You’ll need about a half cup. Place the baking soda into a bowl and add water a teaspoon at a time until you have created a paste from the mixture. Dip your cleaning cloth or rag into the mixture and apply to the stove wherever it is needed. Continue until you don’t see anymore grease or stains on your stove. You’ll need to take a fresh, damp cloth to wipe away the mixture. Dry the stove with another cloth and it will look like new. You can also try another alternative with baking soda. Grab the box and sprinkle it over the surface of your stove and beneath your burners. Add hydrogen peroxide. It will make the baking soda fizz up and cleaning off the surface of your stove will be easy.

Don’t Forget Dish Soap

Dish soap, or dish detergent, can also be effective when you want to eliminate grease on your stove. Set aside a bowl with hot water. Dip your rag or dishcloth in the water. Apply a coating of hot water on your stove to tackle that stubborn grease. Add dish soap to your water and continue to scrub. If you still have resistant grease, try squirting a few dabs of dish soap on the stove. Keep scrubbing, using your “elbow grease” until that pesky grease is wiped away on your stove. Dip your cloth in hot water to wipe the surface clean, getting rid of any remaining soap and debris. Dry and your stove will be in tiptop shape again.

Make a White Vinegar Spray

You can blend your own white vinegar spray. You’ll put twice as much water as vinegar in a spray bottle, apply it to the surface of your stove, and wipe away the grease.

Add a Dash of Lemon with Baking Soda

Grab your trusty box of baking soda again. Sprinkle it on top of your stove. Slice a lemon. Take one slice and rub it all over the top of your stove. The two will work together as a classic combination that will naturally cleanse your stove. It will smell delightful as well.

Break Out the Vegetable Oil

You might think that adding any type of oil to the mix would just make it worse. However, a little bit of vegetable oil will loosen up the stains on the surface of your stove. You’ll want to get your regular kitchen cleaner next. Spray the surface to wipe away the oil and remaining grime on your stove.

Give Oven Cleaner a Shot

Oven cleaner that you typically spray in the oven is highly effective as well. You’ll take the removable parts off of the stove first and set them aside. Lay them on paper towel or newspaper. Spray down the surface of your stove with your oven cleaner. Make sure that there is plenty of ventilation while you do so. Crack a window or run a fan. You’ll want to let it go to work for a few hours before you grab a cloth or rag and dip it in hot water. Wipe everything clean and your stove will gleam.

Use Rubbing Alcohol Mixed with Salt

You’ll need four times as much rubbing alcohol as salt mixed in a bowl. Grab a rag or cloth, dip it in the mixture, and apply it to the surface of your stove top. You’ll see the grease stains gradually lifting away, revealing the clean surface of your stove once again. Wipe it clean with a cloth dipped in hot water when you are done.

Top Things Every First Time Dog Owner Should Know

Congratulations! Having a new dog in your life is exciting, but if you’re a first time dog owner, there are important things you need to know. While there is much more to learn about caring for a dog than you’ll read here today, these six expert tips will help you get off to a great start.

Dog-proofing your home is a must

New pets are curious and want to check out everything — including things that could be dangerous. Get on your hands and knees and look at things from your dog’s level. What do you see? Good precautions include securing cabinet doors where toxic chemicals are stored, making sure electrical cords are out of reach and moving potentially toxic houseplants to higher ground.

Don’t anthropomorphize. Dogs are not people, too!

Canine behaviorists warn that dogs don’t experience many uniquely human emotions. Feelings like guilt, anger and spite are not part of how dogs operate. It’s a common mistake to anthropomorphize dogs — treat them as if they have the same characteristics as humans — but it leads to fundamental communication errors.

It’s tempting to try to frame your puppy’s antics in a way you understand, but thinking your dog ate your best shoes because he was mad at you for being gone too long leads to training mistakes that too often result in short, unhappy relationships.

Boot camp should start on day one

It’s never too early to teach your puppy good manners. Define your expectations for your dog’s behavior and don’t fall into the trap of allowing naughty habits because it’s cute or because you think she doesn’t know any better — of course she doesn’t!

Dogs aren’t born inherently knowing what acceptable behavior is in a human household. Good manners must be taught and consistently reinforced, which is why many dog owners turn to training collars as their puppy is learning – just make sure you find a collar from a reputable brand. Helping your dog be a model citizen is the key to many happy years together.

Socialized dogs are the best companions

Many troublesome canine behaviors develop because of lack of socialization. Pets of any age can benefit from training to make them more situation-friendly, but making your dog comfortable with a wide range of people, places and activities is best approached before he’s four months old.

If you want a dog that is relaxed and well-behaved in any setting, start socialization early. Take him for road trips and visits to the pet store. Let him romp in the dog park and meet new friends. Ultimately, your dog’s familiarity with most situations will determine his comfort level and his behavior.

Nutrition counts

There is no specific formula for how often you should feed your dog, but what you put in his bowl should meet all of his nutritional needs. Check the label for a statement from the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) that certifies the food is “complete and balanced” for your dog’s life stage. Foods for puppies, adult and senior dogs are formulated differently and the subtle differences can make a significant health impact.

When considering which dog food to by, price isn’t always a guarantee of optimal nutrition, but brands with superior ingredients get better results. Your dog will have a healthy coat that sheds less and there will be less to pick up in the pooper scooper!

Create a rainy day fund for pet care expenses

Some pet care expenses are predictable and there should be room in the budget for food and basic veterinary care, but surprise costs can threaten to derail your financial plans or worse, put you in a position in which you can’t give your dog the care he needs.

Things like boarding fees if you have to go out of town or medical care for a significant injury can add up quickly. Pet insurance is an option for veterinary bills, but starting a rainy day fund the day you bring your new dog home will cover the unexpected.

Building a relationship with your new dog takes time and patience, but with a little know-how, you’ll be on the right track. Relax, have fun, and don’t worry — you’ll learn the rest along the way.