Navigation Menu+

Gathering Accurate Construction and Contracting Bids Online

Using Clean Fill In New South Wales: Advice For House Builders

Posted by on 7:35 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Using Clean Fill In New South Wales: Advice For House Builders

The term ‘clean fill’ refers to earth and soil that is completely free from contaminants like grass, rubble and industrial waste. House builders commonly use clean fill to raise the height of a low-lying construction site or to fill in unwanted features like swimming pools and ponds. If you’re building a home in New South Wales, it’s important to understand how local environmental regulations can affect the supply and use of clean fill material. Find out what you need to know here. Why do builders want clean fill? Construction projects often create large quantities of clean fill when they remove subsoil to make way for a new development. In theory, clean fill is a form of recycling because you use up valuable unwanted material from another site that may otherwise end up in landfill. Clean fill has almost no organic matter present. As such, this type of soil doesn’t decompose. This makes clean fill a great material to use in foundations and other parts of a project because you don’t need to worry about pockets of space that occur with low-quality soil that quickly decomposes. Is it legal to source clean fill? Many people in New South Wales advertise clean fill for sale. In most cases, this type of clean fill simply comes from a small excavation project that has created a pile of unwanted soil. While this type of clean fill may seem OK, it’s unlikely that it has the properties you need. There is actually no legal definition of clean fill in New South Wales. When soil leaves its place of origin, it automatically becomes waste. Strict regulations in NSW control the movement of waste material. For example, before you accept any waste, you must check that the waste comes with a consignment authority. Someone selling clean fill from his land probably won’t have this, so you will break the law if you accept delivery of this material. What steps should you take before accepting clean fill? In New South Wales, you should always check with your local council to find out what controls may restrict the use of clean fill. The council will often need to check and approve that the material does not present any health or environmental risks. For example, a batch of clean fill could still harm local plants and wildlife. What’s more, if you don’t have permission to use waste material in this way, you could face severe penalties, including fines and jail time. Even if you don’t face criminal charges, you may have to foot the bill to remove the waste and clean up the site. Which suppliers should you use? Always use a professional clean fill supplier with the right credentials. Reliable suppliers can give you a valid business name and ABN, as well as customer testimonials that prove their quality of service. If an unknown operator contacts you and offers to put clean fill on your land for free, you should contact the authorities. Unscrupulous providers have scammed innocent consumers and left them with contaminated soil that costs thousands of dollars to remove. It’s important to know where your clean fill comes from. Reputable suppliers will give you details of source sites, as well as information about the site’s usage and why the soil is available. A quick visual inspection...

read more

Is Your Cooling Tower Operating at Peak Efficiency?

Posted by on 2:03 pm in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Is Your Cooling Tower Operating at Peak Efficiency?

As a busy maintenance and engineering manager you are well aware of the vital role your cooling towers perform at your facility. With the many urgent demands on the budget, keeping them operating at peak performance may sometimes be difficult to manage. However, by attending to just three common cooling tower issues you can increase their efficiency, improve their operation and extend their working life. Effective management of the motors, successful handling of contamination, and close observation of water levels will result in more efficient performance. This in turn means cost effective operation over the longer term. Managing Cooling Tower Motors Your cooling tower needs to be upgraded to have the latest high efficiency motors installed. This is necessary because: Today’s motors are manufactured with higher-quality components, conform to more exacting processes and are therefore a much better motor. More reliable electronic controls are able to match the operating speed of electric motors to the requirements of the load. These motors are suited exactly to the application and allow the entire spectrum, ranging from the small pump applications to the huge centrifugal chillers, to operate at peak efficiency. Although the energy efficient motors are initially more expensive than a standard efficiency model, significant savings can be made over long term operation, particularly when contemplating the number of hours of horsepower the motor consumes in annual operation.     Weekly motor maintenance checks are also highly desirable. Technicians should check to detect any signs of excessive heat or vibration in the tower fan motors. Gearboxes must be maintained with the correct oil level and checked for leaks. Knowing the Causes of Cooling Tower Contamination Because of their operating environments, cooling towers are exposed to a wide range of contaminants. Inorganic particles, such as dirt, dust, silt and sand, from the atmosphere and organic particles such as pollen, leaves, bacteria and algae are introduced into the tower’s water supply. These solids eventually collect in the basin of the tower. They begin to erode away the components, particularly the circulation propellers. They develop a scaly growth on the heat transfer surfaces and block the spray nozzles. Dealing with Contamination Regular inspection and maintenance by qualified technicians is best possible strategy of reducing contamination. A proper water treatment program will limit the contaminant’s ability to form scale and minimize their spread and growth throughout the tower. Treatment with ultra-violet light and biocides is the preferred method. A regular replacement of a percentage of the circulating water will keep down the concentration of suspended solids. Technicians can bleed off the necessary amount of water at regular intervals to keep operation within recommended levels. Maintaining the Ideal Water Level The task of keeping just the right amount of water circulating through the system is a common issue for cooling tower engineers. The water circulates through the tower in a cycle by collecting in the tower basin and then returning to the pumps. When the water level becomes too low, the pumps begin to draw in air. If the level is too high, water then overflows to create damage and leaks. Technicians can monitor the float valves and add water to the basin to compensate for water loss and check water levels. Replacing the float valves with electronic level controls will make the task of monitoring the water levels...

read more

Diagnosing The Grind: Three Sensory Steps To Troubleshooting Your Heavy Machinery Gearbox

Posted by on 8:55 am in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Diagnosing The Grind: Three Sensory Steps To Troubleshooting Your Heavy Machinery Gearbox

Heavy machinery is often the backbone of a business, and when it’s not working right, the downtime to fix the machine will cost your business money. While some heavy machinery gearbox issues can be avoided with regular preventative maintenance, it is up to you as the business owner to know when it is time to call in a gearbox mechanic before things go extremely wrong. Leaving heavy machinery to continue running when the gearbox is giving you grief will only earn you a bigger repair bill. So that you know when it is the right time to call in the experts, here are three ways to help you troubleshoot gearbox problems within your machinery gear. What Can You See? A visual inspection is the first step to identifying what your gearbox issues are. Bear in mind that heavy machinery rarely works in a clean environment, so a damaged seal, for example, could be letting dust and dirt particles into the gear wheels of your hard working machine. To do a visual inspection, you must: Have a camera ready to photograph any damage that you see. Once you clean the housing surrounding the gearbox, you could destroy evidence that your mechanic needs before making repairs. By taking photos of everything that you see, you take the guesswork out of trying to describe what you saw at a later time. Look at the seals around the gearbox housing. Are they in perfect condition? Or are they cracked and deteriorated? As mentioned above, if your mechanic opens up the gearbox housing and finds that dirt is mixed in with the lubrication that keeps your gears moving, then the dirt has likely entered through these cracks. Even small particles of dirt can cause gear wheels to wear unevenly or throw the gear wheels completely out of balance. So, a fully sealed gearbox is essential. Unless you are an experienced mechanic, leave the opening of the gearbox for closer visual inspection to a professional. They are trained to detect irregular wearing of the gear teeth and have the tools needed to have a really close look at what is happening beneath the gearbox housing case. What Can You Smell? After you have looked at the exterior of your gearbox, it is time to get your nose to work. Much like a bloodhound dog, you are sniffing the air to see if your olfactory detectors notice any unusual smells coming from the gearbox area. What you are sniffing for are scented clues that your gearbox is overheating. Odours that will help you confirm this diagnosis include the smell of smoke coming from the gearbox seals, or the smell of hot oil leaking out of the gearbox area and striking the hot metal of a running machine. A visual inspection will be required to narrow down where the smell is coming from, but telling your mechanic what you can smell will help them to quickly get the repairs under way. What Can You Hear? Sight and smell are not the only two senses that can help you troubleshoot gearbox issues, as your hearing will play a role in your diagnosis as well. In particular, you’re listening for the sound of vibration, knocking, or clunking coming from the gearbox area. When the gear teeth turn, they should perfectly mesh...

read more

Raise Your Home with Style: 5 Fun Designs and Ideas for Raised Houses

Posted by on 1:05 pm in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Whether you are building a raised home from scratch or modifying your current home, there are a range of styles you can embrace. Keep in mind that a raised home does not need to look utilitarian or boring, and it also doesn’t have to be based on the traditional Queenslander, one of the first styles of raised homes in Australia. Stumped for ideas? To get your creativity flowing, here are five stylistically diverse raised housing ideas and designs to consider: 1. Modern lifted box Take a style cue from the Sydney Opera house, and imagine a home that complements the water. However, instead of wave shapes, consider a modern, rectangular home that looks reminiscent of a long dock. To lift the home, simple metallic stilts at jaunty angles sit under its base. 2. Antique shutters If modernity isn’t your passion, consider antique embellishments for your raised home. If you already have an old home or if you simply love Victorian, plantation, Queenslander or any other turn of the 20th century styles, lift your home and then add a unique facade of antique shutters around the space under your home. This covering creates a seamless look with the rest of your home’s exterior and almost makes it appear as if the raised area hosts living spaces. If a ten or twenty-year floor occurs, your home should be safely out of the rising water, but any wood elements in the antique shutters may need to be replaced. 3. Classic firehouse style If neither modern nor antique styles appeal to you, get into the action with a raised house modeled after a classic firehouse. Traditional firehouses and many contemporary ones feature the parking spots on the ground floor of the firehouse and the living area above it. This option appeals to homeowners for several reasons. By turning the area under your home into a parking garage, you keep the area useful which is much more efficient than having wasted space under your home. Additionally, because you have to raise the home so it is elevated enough to accommodate parking, you actually gain extra respite from flooding because your home is more elevated than it would be if you simply created a metre-high deadspace under your home. 4. Treehouse Instead of adding parking under your home, take a foray back into childhood with a raised home based on a treehouse. The tree house idea is perfect for homes that already have that log cabin look, or you can easily embrace this idea if you are building a new home in a flood zone with lots of trees. To create a treehouse look, you can use trees as some of your posts, or you can simply set your raised home in or near a grove of trees. For stylistic consistency, your home can be a log cabin home, or it can take on a clapboard style. Instead of metal or steel posts, a lifted home modeled after a treehouse looks best with timber stilts, the traditional type of stilts used in house raising. 5. Outdoor living Instead of foraying back into childhood, create more space for your adult lifestyle by turning the raised area into a living space. There area few ways to achieve this effect. For example, you can raise your home, and underneath...

read more

Annoyed By Graffiti? What To Do When It Strikes Your Business

Posted by on 2:23 pm in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Annoyed By Graffiti? What To Do When It Strikes Your Business

While some graffiti has a lot of thought put into the design, most is just vandalism of buildings. Graffiti continues to be a problem for many businesses in Queensland, but there are a few things you can do to deal with this nationwide problem. Now that you are dealing with this issue yourself, you need to put these three tips to immediate use so that you can deal with the current problem, and also hopefully prevent it from happening again. Remove It Quickly When your business is tagged with graffiti, the number one tool you have for future graffiti prevention is to remove it from your building quickly. While graffiti may look like random letters or words to you, many times they are identification tags that are unique to each graffiti artist. The person who has placed the graffiti on your business is hoping that all their friends and associates will see their handiwork and give them the attention they crave. Therefore, you will achieve two things when you attend to graffiti removal fast: The faster you remove the graffiti from the building, the less attention the artist will get. This will discourage them from tagging your building again in the future. The fresher the graffiti paint is, the easier it is to remove. When it is time to remove graffiti, you need to head down to your paint supply store to get the tools you will need. Choose The Right Graffiti Removal Tools When you get to the paint store, you need to decide which method of graffiti removal you are going to use. There are two popular methods that you will choose between: Purchase the paint that you are going to use and a long-handled paint roller, and simply paint straight over the top of the graffiti. The main downfall to this method is that it can be difficult to colour match the existing paint if this has faded over time. You may end up needing to paint the whole side of the building, which could take up a lot of your time. Purchase chemicals at the paint store that can be used to remove the graffiti. These solvents work best when the paint is fresh. The longer the paint has to soak into the wall, the harder it will be to remove the stain. You may still need to paint over the top of the graffiti once it has been removed depending on how far in the paint colour has set. Once the graffiti has been removed, you need to consider how you are going to keep the graffiti from coming back. Plan For Future Graffiti Prevention Once you have removed the graffiti, your business will look great again, but there is no guarantee that you will not be paid a visit by the vandals again in the future. There are several ways that you can minimise future graffiti damage to your building: Add good quality lighting to the areas being targeted. Graffiti artists like to hide in the shadows since they will be charged with a crime if they get caught. By illuminating the area well, they won’t want to risk being seen by passing police. Use a graffiti-resistant overcoat once you have repainted the wall. You can purchase this from your paint supplier, and...

read more