Tuesday, February 19, 2013


In case you were not aware, as of January 1, 2013, if you live in multi-housing you need to be aware of the new state law requiring the installation of a Carbon Monoxide (CO) alarm.  Single family homes and multi family homes, not exceeding 4 units were subject to this law effective July 1, 2011. This California law requires the installation of a carbon monoxide (CO) alarm or a combined CO/Smoke detector.  

Carbon Monoxide (CO), also known as the “Silent Killer”, is the leading cause of accidental poisoning deaths in the United States, with over 500 per year and sends another 20,000 annually to emergency rooms nationwide.  Carbon Monoxide is an odorless, colorless and tasteless gas produced whenever any fuel is burned.  It can enter the home from sources such as a gas or wood-stove, fireplace, household appliances, vehicles and other devices that burn fuel.

According to the law, detectors must be installed in all dwelling units that contain fossil fuel burning heaters and appliances, as well as a fireplace.  It also applies to dwellings that have an attached garage.  The definition of fossil fuel is “Fuel derived from prehistoric organisms: any carbon-containing fuel derived from the decomposed remains of prehistoric plants and animals, e.g., coal, peat, petroleum natural gas, gasoline and firewood.”

Effective Dates for CO Alarm Installation:

July 1, 2011 - all existing single-family dwelling units intended for human occupancy.

January 1, 2013 - all other existing dwelling units intended for human occupancy, e.g. condominiums, apartments and hotels.
Approved CO Alarms:

New Construction must be hardwired with battery backup and interconnected.

Existing homes may be battery operated, plug-in with battery backup or hardwired with battery backup.

Installation Location:

Carbon Monoxide alarms must be installed outside each separate sleeping area in the immediate vicinity of the bedroom(s), and on every level of home, including basements.

According to California law, if you do not comply with the new law, you may face a maximum $200.00 fine.  However, residents will receive a 30-day notice to correct, before fine will be imposed.

For further information, please click here.

If you are interested in getting Carbon Monoxide alarms installed in your home, apartment or condo, please give Steve’s Handyman Service a call.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013


With warmer weather just around the corner, home and business owners alike, are dusting off their home improvement to-do lists and finding that many of their projects fell through the cracks this past year.

Here are a few tips to consider for your spring home maintenance check-list:

Inspect the outside of your home as well as other wooden structures for dry rot.  Use a screwdriver to probe areas you believe there might be wood rot.  If the tip exposes any soft or mushy areas, this should be added to your list of home maintenance chores.  Some areas to inspect include wood siding and corner trim as well as window sills and trim. 

Inspect your window and door screens.  I love fresh air which means having my doors and windows open.  Now is the time to start cleaning and making sure that your screens are free from rips and tears as well as bent frames.  You don’t want any unwelcome critters entering your home.

If you have a crawl space or basement, make sure to inspect it for standing water and/or excessive moisture.  

If you are like me, I love having fires all winter long.  Now is the time to have your fireplace or wood stove and chimney cleaned and serviced, as needed.  

Another item to include on your list is to start inspecting your deck for deterioration.  Look for loose or cracked wood.  If a deck board feels too spongy, it probably needs to be replaced.  Use the screw driver method mentioned above on the deck posts.  If there is wood rot, it’s time to get this repaired as well.  If you have handrails, make sure they feel secure and not wobbly.

Once your deck seems good to go…why not get it pressure washed as well as sealed.

Oh, the dreaded Spring Cleaning – click HERE for a downloadable list to help make your spring cleaning easier, room by room! 

Why not take your Spring Cleaning one step further and replace last years wall colors with something new or maybe have some ceiling fans installed to help circulate the fresh air.

Adding more storage to your home not only decreases clutter, but increases your home value as well.

In summary, you can do a lot of the small items on your list, but for some of the bigger things like paint, dry rot repair, etc...why not contact Steve's Handyman Service. I can save you time and energy!!

Remember...I am just a phone call away!