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Home Improvement

Despite the Darkness: 7 Tips to Light Up A Room Facing North



Whether you own or rent your place, a dull, north-facing space can become your arch enemy, feeling dry, cold, and gloomy even on the freshest of summer seasons.

The presence of natural light is not that constant, particularly in some homes. Fortunately, there are decorating tricks which can create a big difference. There’s no need for knocking down walls. It’s all about illusions that add smart brightness.

You’ll be glad to appreciate that with a couple of smart lighting touches, you can turn a north facing room into a beauty. Listed below are some tips that can help modify a dark room into a light, radiant space.

A Combination of Pendant Lengths

Excellent for providing light to bedrooms, living rooms, and kitchens, pendants are on trend on Black Mango as well.

Make them operate in a dark room with varying methods and, essentially, lengths to present a widespread and more layered lighting impact. You can further team a short and long pendant together beside a piece of furniture or a feature mirror, or in a notably gloomy edge of a room.

Energize with Floor Uplighters

Painting your walls will certainly make the room appear brighter, but it is quite a boring color design. Be that as it may, since we mostly have a white ceiling, it is a call to apply floor uplighters to energize the light heading to the ceiling and bounce it directly back in the room.

There is an excellent choice of wall or freestanding uplighter styles, which each can produce a feeling of weightlessness without the need to give up the walls, which often truly compliment the luxuriance of a gloomy room.

Appreciating the Ends of your Sofa

A single bulb in the middle of your ceiling will not produce much to light up an entire room, and that is the reason why it makes sense to consider lighting and particular furniture pieces to work together.

Usually, interior designers will suggest placing a couple of lights, whether table lamps or floor lights, at either side of your couch to generate light that will help in making glare from the TV a less strainful.

Installing floor outlets are an effective way to allow adaptability with your lighting design. For instance, if your sofa is on the other end of your room to the nearby electrical outlet. Another way is to continuously manage the lead across your room making certain it’s taped down so that you don’t trip over it.

Task Lighting and Ambient Lighting Combo

Diversity is a key factor when it comes to illuminating any room in your home. Steering for a combination of ambient lighting (delicate lighting that lights large areas) and task lighting (luminous, focused light established on a specific position) is the safest way to thoroughly light up a north-facing room without the glow feeling flat.

What makes it more simple is that the single rule works for each room. In the cookhouse, you will need task lighting for surfaces engaged in work and ambient lighting for dining or talking after hours.

If you own a desk in your living room or bedroom, that will most certainly claim the reason task lighting, while ambient lighting is best to help you relax while watching TV.

Make the room tidy

It is quite apparent when you think about it, but only a few people do it. It is good to remember that the simpler and clearer your shades, the more brightness will spring to light up your room.

Although metal pendant methods, colorful sculpture ideas, and matte tones seem good, they tend to conceal some of the brightness that you so desperately need to shine, so it is better to opt for clear glass, big shades or simply brandish the bulbs themselves.

Try to do Dimmer

If you think that you must use dimmer switches as a way to minimize light, when you need to produce a gloomy vibe in rooms that are naturally bright, but they are an excellent way to attain the exact reverse.

The answer is to utilize your dimmer at an average setting frequently so that you will get used to that as the standard level of brightness, and then when the chilly season kicks in, or you demand more illumination, switch it up to full blast.

A Light Behind Closed Doors

One concern with rooms facing north is that there’s limited natural brightness to light up closets, drawers or cupboards once opened. What’s the purpose of a closet full of clothing if you can’t recognize one piece from the other?

LED lighting strips installed to the inside roof of the storage space or a track lighting neighbouring the opened doors will help you identify the items you stored but also briefly add brightness to the room in general.


Illuminating a dark and gloomy room will instantly make it more engaging. But it is very nice to know that lighting a dreary room does not need a complete renovation or a flood of extreme brightness. Sometimes it only needs a bit of creativity and practicality to light up your darkroom efficiently.


Home Improvement

5 Things You Need to Know Before Buying a Solar Panel



Through innovation, research and billions of dollars of investment over the last couple of years, the solar panel has reached a level of development that makes it very affordable for the average household making it possible for us to draw our daily energy need from the sun. This has created a lot of advantages for the populace. Knowing the type of Solar Panel that you need involves a lot of processes.


According to Solarrun, a Solar Panel Company in Australia, we can shorten this process by knowing 5 important things before buying a Solar Panel. This will not just help us in choosing the right one for our household. This will also educate us about the important things that we need to know in using a Solar Panel.


How Do Solar Panels Work and What are their Benefits?

To simply put it, solar panel turns an endless supply of sunbeams into useful electricity. Aside from the fact that it reduces electricity bill, the biggest benefit of having a solar panel is its renewable source. Solar Energy also has the least negative impact on the environment compared to other energy sources.


Manufacturer’s Warranty

Pay particular attention to the fine prints of the contract that show the warranty and issues, such as where to send your modules if you encounter a problem. Check if the manufacturer’s guarantee is at least ten years. Performance guarantee is different from a manufacturer’s guarantee. Performance warranty is about the number of kilowatt-hours a solar system actually produces over time. Most of the time, the installer and not the manufacturer itself offers the performance warranty.


Quality and Specifications

As far as quality is concerned, a lot of people insist that a solar panel made from Germany is better than the ones made from China. But some Chinese brands are just fine. For specifications, you should also check the power tolerance, voltage rating and coefficient of temperature as well as the original manufacturer. Check for different suppliers and installers in your area. Make a checklist and compare all the key specifications that are well suited for your house.


Roof Suitability

The angle of the roof is essential in installing a solar panel. You have to make sure that your roof tiles are not old, fragile or worn out. You should also check if buildings, trees or any other objects shade any area of your roof. The solar panel installer will measure your roof and give you indications about the performance of the panel on your roof.


Maintenance and Running Costs

Solar Panel does not require big maintenance cost. You can easily use a hose to remove dust or leaves that settle on the top of the panel. Some companies would recommend servicing the system for checkup and cleaning once a year and it will not cost you that much.
We have summed up the top 5 things that you need to know about solar panels.Creating a smart home through solar energy is a big decision especially because it needs a lot of investment. It is highly recommended that you do a lot of research and improve your knowledge about solar panels before making the actual purchase.

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Home Improvement

Electric or Wet Underfloor Heating System for Wood Flooring?



Your home is your sanctuary. It is where you should feel the most comfortable with. Since the home is where everything and everyone you love is, it should be prepared for anything including season changes.

You’re preparing for the cold and you’ve decided to put underfloor heating under your wooden floor, the next question is do you go for electric or water heating?


Underfloor heating 101

The main thing to remember when combining wood floor with underfloor heating is that the maximum floor surface temperature should not exceed 27 C (80.6F).

Ensuring thermal conductivity is best when you are using a denser wood. Thinner flooring material with higher density is more responsive to the system and has a shorter heat-up time.

To help you decide on which type of underfloor heating is appropriate for your home, let’s compare electric and water-based heating; listed are the pros and cons of each to help you decided which heating system might suit your home better:

  1. How It Works

Electric: Network of wires installed under your floor. You can choose loose-fit wiring or easy-made mats for larger areas.

Water: a series of pipes linked to your boiler or solar panels that pump hot water under the floor

  1. Installation

Electric: The electric heating system is easier than water based. Although usually installed by an electrician, this system can also be a DIY project.

Water: The water-based system needs an expert (professional plumber) to install them

  1. In-house structural changes

Electric – you need to place a layer of insulation below the mats or wiring so you don’t lose heat into the ground

Water – if there’s not enough room below your floors, you may need to raise the floor levels


Points of consideration:

1. Type of Installation

One of the major things you should consider is the type of installation. Are you considering to renovate or are you working on a new build? The building will give you more flexibility in the sense that your floor heights have not been established yet.

You have the freedom to choose whether you’ll go for a wet underfloor heating or an electric system beneath your final flooring.

Electric underfloor heating may be more suitable if you are renovating as it does not significantly alter or increase the floor height.

2. Location


Where you will install the underfloor heating will also have an impact on the type of system you should get. Usually, water-based underfloor heating is recommended on the ground floor with good insulation. If you’re renovating and using a low-profile system though, it may be difficult to reach enough heat output from a low build water-based system especially if the subfloor is uninsulated.

On the other hand, most energy efficiencies are achieved in large areas with water underfloor heating combined with an air or ground source heat pump. It is advisable to conduct a heat loss calculation to know which underfloor heating system provides more heat output than the maximum heat loss.

3. Plumber vs Electrician

When considering which system to use, it’s worth researching the cost difference between a qualified electrician wiring the electrical system versus a professional plumber installing and connecting a wet system. The architecture of your house will help you determine which is more preferable.


Post heating system installation notes:

  1. Leave an expansion gap

There should be an expansion gap left around edges of the room. A 10 mm minimum gap is recommended but it’s always best to check with the manufacturer and their installation instructions for the expansion gap width.

  1. Ensure correct moisture content

Making sure that you have the correct moisture content is important since wood is a natural material which absorbs humidity. Laying a new wood floor with too high moisture in a dry house will result in shrinking and opening gaps between the floorboards. On the other hand, installing wood floor to a humid house would expand the width of the planks.

  1. Let the floor acclimate

Post installation, the floor should be acclimated for at least 48 hours before turning the system on. You should also check with the flooring manufacturer the suitability of the flooring with the heating system that you have chosen.



Heating your home especially during the cold season is important for your health, comfort, and well-being. You should invest in a heating system that is suitable for your design, budget, and lifestyle.

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Home Improvement

Simple Tips on Small Apartment Solutions



When it comes to our big cities, most of us live in small apartments. The biggest reason for this is, of course, rising rentals. But many people now also prefer small apartments. As our families shrink from joint set-up to single child units, a smaller home is simply easier to manage. The trend now is to invest in just what you need. But does a small home seem too impractical? Do you worry that you will never be able to live comfortably in a small home?

If you are, then worry not. With innovative solutions, small spaces can be made more comfortable. Instead of investing in hundred things, just include things that can make your space look larger, like glass door accessories manufacturers. On the whole, the idea here is to be smart about your space. Here are our tips to bring space into your small apartment:

Remove the clutter: Nothing shrinks a space faster than clutter! A cluttered space always looks automatic. The biggest culprits here are horizontal places like cabinet tops or table tops. So, the first thing you need to do is clean up your space. A pile of newspaper, toys or books lying around the place makes the room look untidy and smaller. Instead, adhere strictly to the ‘each thing in its place’ philosophy.

Play with light: Space becomes much smaller in the absence of light and a small space can seem larger if it is properly lit up. Even better, find ways to let in natural light into the room. You can do this with wide windows and doors. In fact, we recommend that you remove one wall and replace it with glass. Contact glass door accessories manufacturers for installing wide French windows wherever possible. The removal of four walls automatically opens up a room. With the windows or doors opening up to the outside, you get plenty of light which makes the room seem larger.

Innovative storage solution: The biggest problem in most small homes is the storage. In the course of our life we are bound to pick up a lot of paraphernalia. While some of it can be thrown out, we will still be stuck with essentials that grow with our age, such as mementoes, important documents and the many little and big things you tend to collect once you have children. Since you cannot put everything out there and you do not have wardrobes for everything, the best way is to look for innovative storage solutions.

Look for box beds or tables with drawer space. Homes also come with number of such storage spaces today, like a shelving unit behind the door, cabinets under the bathroom sink or a window seat that opens up for storage beneath. Furniture companies are also focusing on making furniture with in-built storage space.

Get glass partitions: Wherever possible, get glass partitions instead of wooden or brick walls. It will again help you to open up the space. This is because glass allows light to pass through so you can see the entire room. If privacy is a concern, you can look for frosted glass from glass door accessories manufacturer.

Get dual purpose furniture: This can remove both the clutter and give you innovative storage solutions mentioned earlier. With space limited, you must think of smart solutions like furniture that can double up for another purpose, so that one piece can perform two functions. For instance, get a sofa-cum-bed if it’s just a one room space or of if you don’t have a spare room for the guests. You can also look at tables that can extend when required or stools that can be used as both side tables and sitting stools.

Think vertical: A room that is more ‘vertical’ then horizontal always looks more spacious. You can look for homes with high ceilings. Other solutions include putting shelving or storage units towards the ceiling. By keeping them at the top, we make the room less cluttered, while giving the room an illusion of light.

Innovative solutions like those provided by glass door accessories manufacturers can be very handy in making a small apartment look larger. Follow our tips and see a modern and stylish small space come alive.

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