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Andy Alvarez
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The Inspector Newsletter
July 2015: Roof Inspections
Maintenance Matters

Maintenance Matters

Caring for Your Countertops

You might not give your kitchen countertops much thought, but they do require some maintenance to keep to keep them in good condition. Depending on the material, your countertops may even require a little extra maintenance. Here’s what you need to know about caring for your countertops.

Basic Maintenance Tips

Every countertop requires the following, regardless of the material it is made from:

  • Prevent scratches to the surface by wiping countertops daily.
  • Wipe up spills when they happen to prevent staining or discoloration.
  • Make sure that any cleaners used are approved for your countertops. For example, vinegar is fine to use on laminate countertops but not on marble.
  • Be careful about putting hot pans on your countertops.
  • Keep countertops dry, as water can cause a film that can dull countertop materials such as Corian.
  • Use a cutting board when using a knife to chop or cut food.

Caring for Stone Countertops

Granite, quartz, marble, travertine and other stone materials often need special care:

  • Some stone countertops, such as some types of granite, require periodic sealing. Make sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for when to reseal your countertops.
  • Use trivets under hot pans — even stone countertops can be adversely affected by heat.
  • Use trivets or mats under ceramic objects, which can scratch some types of stone countertops.
  • Do not use strong chemicals, such as bleach, on stone countertops.

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Did You Know?

What’s a ‘White Roof’?

Most people know that the color white reflects light, and thus the sun’s heat, and that’s the principle behind a white roof. A good option in warmer climates, a white, light-colored or reflective roof helps reflect the sun’s heat away from the house. Commonly called cool roofs, a white roof is particularly effective when trees are located next to the reflective surface: The trees absorb the reflected sunlight and, in the process of photosynthesis, provide evaporative water that cools the air around the house.

The benefits of a white roof in warm climates can be significant:

  • Reduce air conditioning bills
  • Prolong the life of your air conditioner
  • Receive utility rebates in some areas
  • If you live in a cool climate, a white roof is probably not a good option for your home. It will likely save money during hot summer months, but you could experience higher heating bills in the cold winter months.

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    MONTHLY TRIVIA QUESTION

    True or False: A ceiling fan cools a room’s temperature.

    Be the first to answer correctly and win a $10 Starbucks gift card. Submit your answer to your local NPI/GPI inspector to find out if you’ve won.

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