This Blog is dedicated to the notion that fixing things on our homes as well as understanding how they work is a fun, life-long learning process.

Fixing things and remodeling are my passions, If you are interested in remodeling your home, or just happen to stumble upon my site, please spend some time in my world. You’ll be pleased that you did.

The original content contained here is proof that when you are passionate about something it is easy to find stuff to talk about.

Behind the scenes at Levco Care

We are working on setting up our systems for our clients. We have a great idea and a great place to start, I just need to free up the staff to make it happen.

Inspirational Quotes

Surround yourself with people you love and have fun. The rest is gravy. Paul Tillotson (1965 -2016)

I love the smell of sawdust in the morning. Me, renaissance man (8-28-58 Still going strong!)

“Quality construction does not cost- it pays” (as seen on a bumper sticker)

Indoor Air Cooling Season

By | HVAC, Understanding your home | No Comments

Here are a few things that will help make sense of your home’s cooling system. At Levco, when remodeling, we always evaluate the HVAC systems. We usually find something that could be done better or tuned up. Let’s face it HVAC is a system at the house that usually requires little maintenance and either works or it doesn’t. Whether you have an evaporative cooling device (Swamp Cooler), heat pump, ceiling fans, or air conditioning units all of these principals apply. Circulating air feels cooler to us. Just like when our own bodies sweat and water evaporates, we feel cooler. Heat…

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Diagnosing Concrete Problems

By | Concrete, Understanding your home | No Comments

Levco has been  asked to diagnose concrete problems with regularity. Whether it is foundations, slabs, or other, concrete,we are seeing the same issues  consistently.  I have researched the issues and  gathered the information needed to understand the more common ones. We also have extremely knowledgeable resources to assist on the less common issues. First of all there is a clear difference clear between cement and concrete. Cement is the material that is considered the binder that causes concrete to form “Concrete is the hardened version of Cement.” Portland cement also known as a hydraulic cement, is made from mined materials…

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Repairing a Chimney

By | Masonry, Roofing, Understanding your home | 2 Comments

I had noticed that my chimney was in disrepair several years ago and had meant to repair it some perfect weekend. It all came to fruition Saturday, The weather was cooperating and my son and I  had time to point the existing bricks. Plus my wife was out of town. As luck would have it , she returned just as the boys started the repair project. I suppose she is getting used to our daredevil antics and didn’t have me explain why I was risking our son’s life. I was shocked when I touched the 4 bricks on the Southwest…

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Shower Tile Problems

By | Masonry, Understanding your home | No Comments

We are starting to see a serious problem as a result of the building boom of the late 80’s and 90’s. Turns out there is no building code restricting the use of water resistant drywall as tile backer for tile. Even today some remodelers and handyman services are sneaking it in to save a few bucks. Best practices dictate using a cementatious or otherwise waterproof product that won’t expand or disintegrate with water contact. What happens is that tile is set on the “Green Board” Sheetrock because it is water resistant. Over time, the grout fails from poor sealing, failed…

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Filters and Your Home

By | Green Remodeling, HVAC, Understanding your home | No Comments

Indoor air quality is one of the four pillars of our green philosophy. Besides working with products that don’t off gas things like formaldehyde, filters are high on the list of things we have control over that keeps our indoor air quality in good shape. Residential air filters are graded on a MERV Scale (Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value) to determine how much the filter media will let pass through. Filters that pull dust and particles from the air are measured in .3 microns to 10 microns. For perspective a human hair is 100 microns. The MERV scale goes from 1-16…

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Egress Windows

By | Egress Windows, Understanding your home, Windows | 2 Comments

As a remodeler in Boise, I am often asked to discuss the possibility of adding Egress windows to existing basements. I realized that the term is foreign to many folks. What is an egress window? Egress Windows are  those that meet or exceed a rigid set of dimensions and details that allow save exit in case of emergency. In an area where most contractors will reluctantly take a stab at putting one in for you, Levco boast and brags about installing them. The primary issue is safety, secondary benefits include increased property value by adding natural light, and adding another…

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I Have a Cold Room

By | HVAC, Understanding your home | One Comment

As a remodeler I am frequently asked about this problem and often get to troubleshoot the situation prior to calling in the big guns. Here are a few of the tips I have found to solve the problem. Turns out this situation is fairly common even in newer homes. In Boise Idaho we live on the edge of a desert and have some unique climatic conditions to consider. This describes a typical home with one zone. Larger homes with multiple system and controllers require a professional.  I have a multi pronged approach to solving these problems in single system homes….

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Sound Transmission Reduction

By | Interior Walls, Sound Proofing, Understanding your home | One Comment

As a professional remodeler,Levco is asked to fix many kinds of house problems. Over the years this is where much of the challenge and joy comes form for us. Discovering clever ways to solve the problems gives a sense of accomplishment that inspires us to be creative. Here is how we approached and ultimately solved our latest challenge. Where to begin? I began with a definition: Sound is defined as a vibration in an elastic medium, that is, any material (air, water, physical object) that returns to its normal state after being deflected by an outside force such as a…

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