Maintenance Monday – Test Your Air Conditioner Now

With Memorial Day next week, Summer is quickly approaching. Please test your air conditioner now to make sure it works before the real heat is upon us. Set your A/C so it comes on then let it run for a while to make sure everything is working correctly. If there is a problem, please call the maintenance department at 410-465-2151 to get your air conditioner fixed now.  You don’t want to wait for the heat of summer to fix your A/C when it will be uncomfortable without it.

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Maintenance Appreciation Month

September is Maintenance Appreciation Month, so here at The Century Corporation / Awalt Builders we are making a special effort to show our sincere appreciation to our Maintenance Team. When you see one of our Maintenance Rock Stars, please make a special effort this month to let them how much you appreciation all their hard work. As a small token of our appreciation, we have given each member of our Maintenance Team a Candy Gram.

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Who at Burnam Woods, Old Orchard or Chatham Gardens Apartments would you like to nominate for Maintenance Rock Star?

SNOW expected Tonight and Tuesday!

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Snow is headed our way tonight, so please be careful out there. Watch your step on the slippery sidewalks and watch for the plow trucks while pulling out of your parking spot and driving through the courts. When it snows, we will clear and treat the sidewalks and parking lots. Please remember to stomp your feet outside before entering your building, so you do not track in chemicals. Also, be careful when walking up or down the stairs on the tile so you don’t slip with your wet shoes.

When snow is expected, please do not park your car so close to the curb that your front or rear bumper extend over the curb edge as it prevents us from being able to clear the sidewalks with the plow. When we start clearing the parking spaces when snow starts accumulating, we ask the residents to please move your vehicles in order for us to clear multiple spaces at a time. We also ask you kindly push the snow & ice off their vehicles onto the drive area, rather then back onto the side walks or in between the vehicles. Even when we have already plowed the drive areas, please push the snow back to the driveway rather than in between the cars when clearing the snow off your car. This will help prevent unnecessary falls and allows for better snow removal and treatment between your vehicles.

Please be respectful of the snow plows, and give them ample room to move about in the parking lots. When you are driving toward or behind the plow trucks and tractors, please keep a safe distance. Wait for a signal from the plow driver that it is safe to enter or exit. In return, please give them a warning when you are about to enter or exit. The drivers are multi-tasking with the operation of the plows and salt spreaders along with the driving of the vehicle.

Be safe!

Maintenance Monday – cleaning your windows

We do not provide a window cleaning service to your individual apartment windows, but you can easily clean your windows. First remove the storm windows and the slider. Second, remove the screen and clean the window with a squeegee and a sponge (like a car wash squeegee). If you have streaks and lint on your windows after washing them, try cleaning them with newspaper instead.

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Maintenance Monday – preventing kitchen fires

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Cooking fires are the most common cause of household fires. Here are eight tips from Apartment Guide to help prevent kitchen fires:

1. Stay in the kitchen. This may seem obvious, but, according to the National Fire Protection Association, unattended cooking is the number one cause of cooking fires. If you must leave a stove unattended, turn off the heat and move the pan to a cool burner.

2. Use a timer. Check food regularly, whether you’re simmering, baking, boiling or roasting. Using a timer can help remind you to check on your dish.

3. Keep the stove top clear. Keep dishtowels, oven mitts, paper towels—anything that can catch fire—away from your stovetop.

4. Dress for the occasion. Wear close-fitting clothes, and tightly roll up sleeves, when you’re cooking. Loose clothing can come in contact with burners and catch fire.

5. Wipe up spills. Cooking on a dirty stove, or in a dirty oven, is just inviting a potential fire. Grease buildup is flammable; clean your stove every time you cook and promptly wipe up any spills.

6. Don’t overheat your oils. Overheated cooking oil can start to smoke and bubble up, which can cause it to spill out and ignite. Not sure about the smoking point for your cooking oils? Refer to this handy chart.

7: Wait for grease to cool before disposing. Toss hot grease into your trashcan and it could go up in flames! Wait for it to cool before disposing of it in the garbage. Or, better yet, pour it into an old food can before tossing it out.

8. Keep your smoke detector working. A smoke detector is an important fire safety device and your first line of defense. Make sure your landlord has installed one. And make a mental note to change the batteries twice a year, when you change your clocks fordaylight savings time.

Maintenance Monday – keeping your apartment cool

 

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In the coming Summer months, the temperatures will rise and your air conditioner will run and run causing your BGE bills to get more and more expensive. But there are some things you can do to keep your apartment cooler, so your air conditioner won’t run quite as much. Here are some apartment cooling tips from Ron Leshnower at About.com Apartment Living/Rental :

If your apartment becomes uncomfortable or unbearable when it gets hot outside, don’t assume there’s not much you can do about it. Even though you may rent an apartment and have limited control over the building’s air-conditioning system, there are still certain things you can do to help maintain a pleasant environment in your home.

Here are suggestions for keeping cool in your apartment that require little time and effort, don’t cost a cent, and could help reduce the amount of your monthly electricity bill:

1. Close or Open Doors

Depending on your air-conditioning situation, you may need to close or open doors to maximize the amount of cool air in your rental.

For instance, say you’re renting a small one-bedroom apartment and you rely on one air-conditioning unit in your bedroom to keep cool. You should be sure to keep your bedroom door open to allow cool air from your unit to circulate throughout your apartment.

However, if your concern is making sure the bedroom (and not the rest of the apartment) gets enough cool air (such as when you go to sleep at night), you might want to keep the door closed to prevent cool air from seeping out.

2. Close or Open Windows

If you’re running air-conditioning units, you should keep the windows closed. Otherwise, much of the cool air will escape and you’ll add unnecessarily to your electricity bills. If outside temperatures fall significantly (such as at sunset), you might want to open your windows and shut off your air-conditioners to take advantage of a natural, cool breeze.

3. Keep the Sunlight Out

If you’ve got blinds or curtains, keep them closed on hot, sunny days to conserve energy.

Also, if you have air-conditioning units, they’ll have to work that much harder to lower the temperature the more heat that enters through your apartment’s window. When you leave your apartment, don’t forget to shut blinds or close curtains, whether or not you keep your air-conditioners running.

4. Set Your Ceiling Fan to Cool

Many people who buy ceiling fans to cool a room don’t realize that most of these fans have a switch that changes the direction of the blades and actually makes the fans work to keep heat from escaping.

If you’ve got a ceiling fan, find out if your blades are circulating air in the right direction and, if not, how to change it.

5. Move Furniture Away from Air-Conditioning Units

Avoid placing a couch, dresser, or other large pieces of furniture directly in front of or to the side of an air-conditioning unit. Make sure any units in your apartment have enough space to send cool air forward and sideways, ideally at least to a 45-degree angle.

Maintenance Monday – RECYCLE

Recycling is finally coming to Chatham Gardens Apartments! Soon there will be recycling bins next to the dumpsters. Please separate your recycling from your trash. It only takes a few extra minutes, and will go a long way to help the environment and protect our resources. Be on the lookout for recycling instructions.

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For the residents of Burnam Woods and Old Orchard Apartments, you already have recycling bins in your community. Please continue to recycle.

 

 

 

St. Patrick’s Day Snow

No one ever sang “I’m dreaming of a White St. Patrick’s Day,” but that is what we woke up to this morning. Please be careful out there. Watch your step on the slippery sidewalks and watch for the plow trucks while pulling out of your parking spot and driving through the courts. We will clear and treat the sidewalks and parking lots. Please remember to stomp your feet outside before entering your building, so you do not track in chemicals. Also, be careful when walking up or down the stairs on the tile so you don’t slip with your wet shoes.

(photo by Chatham resident Marguerite Buzza)

(photo by Chatham resident Marguerite Buzza)

When we start clearing the parking spaces, we ask the residents to please move your vehicles in order for us to clear multiple spaces at a time. We also ask you to kindly push the snow & ice off your vehicles onto the drive area, rather then back onto the sidewalks or in between the vehicles. (Even if the drive area has been plowed, we prefer you push the snow onto the drive area).

Please be respectful of the snow plows, and give them ample room to move about in the parking lots. When you are driving toward or behind the plow trucks and tractors, please keep a safe distance. Wait for a signal from the plow driver that it is safe to enter or exit. In return, please give them a warning when you are about to enter or exit. The drivers are multi-tasking with the operation of the plows and salt spreaders along with the driving of the vehicle.

Maintenance Monday – keeping your garbage disposal clean

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Garbage Disposals are a great appliance, but they aren’t so great if you don’t keep them clean. Here are three great tips from our maintenance department on how to keep your garbage disposal clean and smelling fresh:

  1. Ice Cubes – Using ice cubes at least once a month will keep your disposal clean and smelling fresh. Simply fill the disposal/drain with ice cubes and turn the cold water on to a slow steady flow directly into the drain. Then turn your disposal on and let it run until the ice has been ground up completely.
  2. Bleach – Use 1/4 cup of bleach in the disposal during this process which will help clear out stale odors. Simply pour the bleach in the drain before filling with ice (this will prevent splash back of bleach), however it would be wise to wear an old shirt when cleaning your disposal with bleach.
  3. Grease – When disposing of grease from cooking, such as bacon grease, you should turn on the hot water and leave it running while rinsing the grease from you pan and dishes. Leave the hot water running for a suffecient amount of time to allow for the grease to completely clear the drain line.

Maintenance Monday – THANK YOU to our Residents!

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We at Century Corporation / Awalt Builders want to thank our wonderful residents for your assistance and patience during this recent snow storm. We couldn’t have done it without you!

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