A Thorough Inspection | Service Request Form | Home Care and Routine Maintenance

Home Care and Routine Maintenance


Wood Finishes:
Dust cabinets frequently with a soft lint-free cloth. You can dampen the cloth slightly with water or a spray-type dust remover. Clean spills immediately. Use a clean cloth and mild soap if necessary. Wipe dry with a clean soft cloth. There are a number of products available for your wood cleaning needs. We recommend Guardsman. Their products are available at many stores nationwide, including Bed Bath & Beyond, Wal-Mart and ACE Hardware.

A more economical way to remove grease build-up from cabinets is to use Fantastik. Apply and remove quickly, then wash your cabinets with a mild soap. After washing, dry thoroughly and apply a silicone-free polish.

*Never use detergents, soap pads, or steel wool on your cabinetry. These harsh abrasives will mar the wood finish. Additionally, we recommend that you avoid the use of paste wax and polishes that contain silicone; the wax build-up is difficult to remove and will leave a residue that attracts dust.

Laminate Finishes:
Periodically clean the interior and exterior surfaces of the door using a damp, soft cloth. Tough stains may be cleaned using a soft, damp cloth with a “Formula 409” or “Simple Green” type cleanser.

Back to the top

Glass Doors:
You can use any commercial glass cleaner to clean the glass. Glass can be cleaned while mounted on the door or removed for better access. While cleaning mounted glass, be careful not to damage the finish of the door and cabinet parts. To remove the glass panel, carefully loosen the screws and lift panel out. The door is tempered to resist chipping and shattering. However, all glass is fragile so handle carefully.

Back to the top

Preventative Care:
If you have a self-cleaning oven, be certain that the heat gasket is sealed properly when cleaning. If the heat gasket does not seal properly, heat may escape from the oven. Cabinets installed near a self-cleaning oven can suffer finish or surface damage. To minimize the risk of damage during cleaning cycles, we recommended that you remove doors and drawers from cabinets that are above and adjacent to a self-cleaning oven.

Back to the top

Hardwood Floors

Ongoing Care and Maintenance:

  1. Vacuum, sweep or dust mop your floor once a week or more if needed. The vacuum head must be brush or felt, and a wand attachment is preferable. Do not use vacuums with beater bars or hard heads.
  2. Spills and tracked-in dirt should be wiped up immediately. For spot cleaning, apply a no-wax floor cleaner onto a clean cloth and rub onto the spot. Never apply wax treatments to your urethane-coated floor.
  3. Use interior and exterior doormats at all entrances to collect dirt and moisture to prevent it from being tracked onto the floor.
  4. Never clean or wet mop with water. Water may permanently damage the floor.
  5. Never use any of the following products, or products similar in nature on your floor: ammonia-based cleaners, acrylic finishes, wax-based products, detergents, bleach, polishes, oil soap, abrasive cleaning soaps, or acidic materials such as vinegar. Many of these products can pit or etch the finish of your flooring or prevent the proper use of maintenance materials.
  6. Do not roll or slide heavy objects directly upon the floor. When moving appliances or heavy furniture, consider laying a solid protective covering on your floor and gently “walk” the item across it. Carpet or cardboard is not adequate to prevent surface compression scratches.
  7. Use furniture leg protector pads under all furniture and make certain to keep them clean and well maintained.
  8. Replace hard, narrow furniture rollers with wide rubber rollers.
  9. Keep the relative humidity in your home between 35% and 55%.
  10. Protect your floor from direct sunlight. Use curtains and UV resistant film on large glass doors and windows. Move area rugs occasionally as they block sunlight and may give the appearance of discoloring under the rug.
Back to the top

Plumbing Products

For best results, keep the following in mind when caring for your plumbing fixtures:

Test First
Always test your cleaning solution on an inconspicuous area before applying to the entire surface

Wipe Clean
Wipe surfaces clean and rinse completely with water immediately after applying cleaner. Rinse and dry any overspray that lands on nearby surfaces. Use a mild detergent such as dishwashing soap. Do not use abrasive cleaners. Do not use cleaners containing ammonia, bleach or acid. Rinse and be sure to wipe the entire surface dry.

Don’t Let Cleaners Soak
Do not allow cleaners to sit or soak on surfaces.

Avoid Abrasive Materials
Use a soft, dampened sponge or cloth. Never use an abrasive material such as a brush or scouring pad to clean surfaces.

Use a soft nylon brush on the Safeguard surface on the bottom of the bath.

Use toilet bowl cleaners on the inside of the bowl only. Do not use tank-in toilet
cleaners as they can damage the flush valve or other working parts.

Stainless Steel Lavatories and Kitchen Sinks
Clean stainless steel at least once a week. Always apply stainless steel cleaner/polish with a nonabrasive cloth or sponge, working with, not across the grain. Cleaners containing chloride are not recommended. If used, rinse the surface immediately to prevent corrosion.

*Stainless steel lavatories with colored finishes require special care and cleaning. For complete details, reference the homeowner’s guide included with the product.

Back to the top


Newly Sodded and Seeded Areas
To assure proper establishment of sodded areas, the following list of practices and procedures are recommended:

  1. Sodded areas should never be allowed to dry out completely. A new sodded or seeded area needs about a ½” of water everyday for the first two weeks.
  2. An even distribution of watering is desired for all sodded and seeded areas. The sod has to be thoroughly wet down to the soil beneath. Light sprinkling does more harm than good. Soak the sod thoroughly that when any corner of the sod is lifted, it will be dripping wet. If sod is allowed to dry out, the strips will shrink and leave gaps, which will not return to their original size. The sod must make contact with the soil beneath.
  3. Make frequent inspections to determine the moisture content of the soil. Gently lift an edge of a sod strip. If it is making good contact with the soil, you will see many strong white roots and lifting the strip will be difficult.
  4. Although lawn establishment is faster with sod than with seeding, it is not “instant. Care must be taken to keep traffic off the new lawn until sod starts to root as it can cause sinking in and uneven contact. Light walking across lawn can begin after one week but wait a month before heavier usage. Traffic should be kept to a minimum for at least the first three to six weeks for seeded areas to allow the plants to root and knot properly. After this, your sod and seed should be one of the most durable surfaces available.
  5. Care of Hydroseeding: Watering is the most important aspect of seed germination; the seed bed should not be allowed to dry out. Use a hose long enough to get all the way around without dragging it across the lawn. A fan type (oscillating) sprinkler is preferred to a rotary (pulsating) sprinkler. Spray should be gentle. Avoid puddling which dislodges seed and causes washouts. Avoid walking on hydroseed for the first 2 weeks. Water daily, to the point of saturation. There should be no run-off or puddles.
    Watering is not required on rain days. Continue to water daily, or when hydroseed has dried, until after the first mowing. First mowing can be done after a minimum uniform height of 3 inches has established. Do not fertilize during the first 3 weeks. Do not apply an herbicide until after the third cutting only if necessary.

    The following is a list of fertilizer recommendations for your new lawn:

    Mid-October: Apply fertilizer with a high nitrogen content.

    Mid-November: Apply dormant fertilizer. At this time an application of pellitized limestone would also be recommended to help raise the pH of the soil.

    Early Spring: Another application of fertilizer, a pellitized limestone application, and a pre-emergence herbicide crabgrass preventer.

    Late Spring-Early Summer: Another application of fertilizer and if necessary apply an insecticide or herbicide, if pests should arise.
Back to the top

Care and Feeding of Plants

Your new landscape has been designed for maximum enjoyment and minimum
maintenance, but as with any living thing, a certain degree of care is required to ensure that your plants are able to grow and thrive. The following is a list of recommendations:

Watering: Water is the most important requirement for a landscape, and consistent watering is a must for new installations. Always check soil moisture before watering. Symptoms for over watering and under-watering can look similar.

If you have a concern about a plant, take a sturdy stick and push it into the ground next to the root ball to the approximate bottom of the plant’s hole. Pull the stick out and look to see if it is extremely wet or dry.

Newly Planted Plants: Immediately after planting, water your new plants thoroughly. Use an open-ended hose running at moderate pressure. A thorough soaking will take from 20 seconds for small plants to 2-3 minutes for larger shrubs and trees.

Plant’s First Year: Water twice weekly with an open-ended hose running at moderate pressure, using the above guide. If drought conditions exist, water every second day.

Grow Bag Trees: These trees should be watered every day. Rain should not be considered as watering.

Established Plants: (plants that are in the ground for 2 or more years) During a hot, dry spell in mid-summer, established plants would benefit from occasional deep watering. Water once or twice weekly, depending on the severity of the weather according to the size of the plant. Proper watering practices for new plants can be less complicated if you first consider the conditions and variety of the plant, environment it’s being transplanted into, and the current and longer term weather patterns. It is important to know that too much
water can be detrimental to a plant as too little water.

Identify Soil Type:

Sandy: a soil consisting of mostly sandy with poor moisture retention
Loamy: (ideal soil) a soil combination of clay and enough sand to counteract the undesirable properties of clay, with a significant presence of organic matter
Clay: a soil with fine particles that become compacted and do not allow much drainage; found in most new developments.

Fertilizing: If planting has been done in the Spring, you will not need to fertilize until the Fall. We recommend fertilizing two times a year, Late Fall (October, November) and Early Spring (March, April) with a 10-6-4 fertilizer, consisting of 50% organics. This general fertilizer will be good for almost all plant material with a handful being placed around the outer perimeter of the each plant. By placing the fertilizer on the ground, it will allow water to dilute and slowly provide nutrients to the new roots which are extending into the soil around the plant.

Trimming: Most new plants will be trimmed at the time of planting or soon before planting, therefore, needing no trimming during the first year. However, during the second season, we recommend plants be trimmed in mid-Spring to mid-Summer. The importance of this period is that it is a time after most plants have flowered but before the plants have begun to establish their growth in the new season. By proper trimming, a plant will remain healthy and full for many years to come.

Re-Mulching: Your new beds have been provided with a good foundation for mulch, which while providing a base for the plantings also helps keep weed growth to a minimum. In most cases, beds will need to be top dressed with a one-inch layer of mulch each Spring, thereby keeping your planting and beds looking clean and manicured.

Warranty: All tree and shrubs come with a warranty provided that during the warranty period they are maintained properly. This warranty is for a one year period during which plants will be replaced only once during that period. There is no warranty of any kind on annuals, perennials, potted plants or plants transplanted or supplied by the homeowner. This warranty goes into effect upon receipt of payment in full. All warranties are null and void for non-payment of services. The warranty does not cover acts of God, fire or casualty, flooding or drought restrictions.

Back to the top

Concrete Pavers and Wall Stones

Interlocking concrete pavers and walls are an excellent, relatively carefree alternative to your hardscaping needs. To keep pavers and walls looking their best, follow these simple recommendations:

  1. Periodic sweeping of sand into any joints or voids (once a year)
  2. Cleaning with a brick cleaning agent sold at local brick retailers or a diluted solution of bleach (once ever 2 years)
  3. Removal of any oil or grease stains with an over the counter degreaser. Please follow all manufacturer’s instructions.
  4. Some common problems that may present themselves are settlement due to natural shifting of the soil and the freezing/thaw cycle of the ground, in addition, pavers coming loose on hard surface areas once adhered with an epoxy resin.
  5. A minor settlement is an easy repair that required removing the effected pavers, modifying the sub-base with typically sand and re-compacting and finally reinstallation of the pavers. Sand will need to be broom swept into all joints for a finished product.
  6. Pavers that have come loose from hard surface areas need to be removed, cleaned of all prior resin and silt, and then reinstalled with new epoxy onto a clean, dry surface. Please be advised that seasonal temperatures may affect the performance of the epoxy.
Back to the top

Interlocking Concrete Paver Warranty

Interlocking concrete products are made from natural materials. Variations in shade can be expected. Photographic reproductions may vary in color from the actual product. Final color selection should be made from actual product samples. However, variations and post efflorescence may occur.

Efflorescence is a whitish powder-like deposit common on concrete and masonry products that normally will disappear over time due to weathering.

Back to the top

Schlage Lock Products

Schlage brass hardware is produced under the highest quality control standards and manufacturing processes available. Lock trim is factory treated with a clear protective coating, electrostatically applied, to provide both beauty and durability.

Brass, like sterling silver, will however, gradually tarnish and eventually take on an antique appearance. Atmospheric conditions, direct sunlight, caustic agents such as paint; abrasive materials or contact with sharp objects may cause the protective coating to crack or peel, exposing the natural brass causing spotting and discoloration. Schlage, and its authorized distributors, cannot warrant the integrity of the brass trim surface under such conditions of exposure. However, you can maintain the beauty of the metal by taking a few actions such as:

  • Periodic cleaning with mild, non-abrasive soap and light buffing with a soft cloth.

  • When peeling, spotting or discoloration occurs, you can restore the beauty of the metal by completely removing the remaining coating and hand polishing the item with a suitable brass polish. Applying a thin coat of wax and buffing with a soft cloth will renew and maintain the gloss of the brass surface. If discoloration continues, repeat the cleaning, polishing and waxing process.

    *Please keep in mind that brass hardware requires care and attention to maintain its inherent beauty and function.