How To Tell The Difference Between Bedbugs And Carpet Beetles

Bedbugs and carpet beetles are among the most common household bugs. Although they are common, they can disrupt your household and it is important to eradicate them. Both these pests can cause itching and rashes. It is important to find out whether your household is being infested by bedbugs or carpet beetles to narrow down the form of pest control to be used.

To solve this problem, some people would approach professional pest exterminators like bed bug exterminator in Singapore .

Unlike bedbugs, carpet beetles do not bite. They do however, causes red itchy welts similar to that caused by bedbug bites. In case of carpet beetles it is due to the allergic reaction caused by tiny hairs on the larvae of carpet beetles.

Physical differences

Although both bedbugs and carpet beetles are quite small there are certain physical characteristics by which you can tell them apart.

Carpet beetles tend to have white and yellowish brown scales with tufts of hair near their abdomen while bedbugs are oval in shape and are brown in color. Adult bedbugs are the size of an apple seed while younger ones are the size of poppy seeds. Carpet beetles are much smaller than bedbugs and they are scaly as compared to bedbugs.

Bedbugs feed off human blood while carpet beetles, true to their name tend to feed on carpets, furniture, fabric, and food.

Bedbugs are more active during the night and like dark places to hide in. They are found in the folds and creases of mattresses, cushions, pillows, curtains, and bedding. Bedbugs are likely to be found in places where humans spend long time periods while carpet beetles can be found in homes, museums, or anywhere near their food source.

Bedbugs cannot jump or fly but carpet beetles can fly.

Carpet beetles can be found on walls while bedbugs are not usually found on walls.

Bedbugs do not cause damage to the structure of the house as such but carpet beetles can damage the area in which they have settled.

The best way to manage carpet beetles is by washing and drying your bedding and clothes. The eggs and larvae of carpet beetle can be removed by vacuuming carpets and your furniture. It is important to dispose off the dust in vacuum bags to prevent carpet beetle infestations. Carpet beetles can be kept away simply by regular and thorough inspection and vacuuming your home.

Unlike carpet beetles, bedbug infestations are harder to control especially since they multiply rather quickly. Once you discover a bedbug infestation, the first step is to wash and dry all your mattress covers, bed sheets, cushion covers, and curtains. In case of severe infestations, professional pest control may be required. Such infestations are usually treated by copious amounts of pesticide which can cause irritation and discomfort and you may be required to vacate your home for a few days to prevent any health risks. For more details, it is best to get in touch with a professional bed bug exterminator Singapore.

Pestbusters – A wavering mind may spell doom when you have to decide about termite control and rodent control for your house

If you have even the slightest suspicion that ants, termites or rodents have invaded your home, you should not commit the mistake of not taking immediate steps to put an end to this menace. If you have a wavering mind, termite control or control of other pests may become very difficult. In fact, there is not much of a difference between the nuisance caused by ants, rodents, or termites. While ants may not pose a serious threat to buildings, termites can even impact the strength of your building itself. Similarly, rodents can wreck a havoc on your belongings. But how can you find out that rodents, ants or termites are active in your home? The following points may help.

1. For checking if termites have invaded your home, look around your home to see if there are termite shelter-tubes, subterranean tunnels or earthen packings that look like mud. Termite shelter-tubes may begin at the ground level and can even cross barriers such as metal caps that have been used in the foundation of your home and the walls. Termites that belong to the subterranean species can alone make subterranean tunnels. Earthen packings are easy to spot.

If your home has been severely infested by termites, the floors may start sagging and the wooden infrastructure of the building may look hollow.

2. As far as rodents are concerned, you can easily find out if they are invading your home. Rodents are capable of living cozily in any environment and more specifically, in unclean spaces such as gutters. Once they start entering your home regularly, they can wreck havoc and damage all your belongings that include furniture, books, clothes, and food items. If you find that these items have been partially or fully bitten, you can conclude that rodents have been making regular entry into your home.

What will be the effects if you delay taking steps to eliminate pests and rodents?

1. Pests and rodents can damage your belongings such as books, clothes, and furniture as well as your building. In fact, your building may lose its strength itself. If the foundation of your building gets weak, the whole structure may come down. Not only that, the wooden infrastructure of your building will severely be impacted by termites. Similarly, termites may eat away even sturdy furniture.

2. Apart from creating nuisance and irritating you by their presence, termites, ants and rodents can harm your health as well as the health of your family members. Experts have found that if your home has been infested with pests like termites, a smell may emanate from them. This smell may harm the health of everyone and more so, the health of those who have already been suffering from respiratory issues like asthma, wheezing or palpitations.

What are the steps you should take for controlling rodents and pests?

1. The first advice you will get from experts is that you must ensure that your home and the surroundings are clean. While an unclean home invites ants and termites, unclean surroundings may encourage rodents to invade your home. Remember that keeping your home and surroundings clean is not a one-time affair. You should continuously and regularly undertake the tasks involved in the process.

2. If you have even the slightest suspicion that pests have infested your home or rodents are making regular visits to your home, you must immediately get in touch with a service provider and request them to make a visit to your place. The experts with the pest control company will undertake a thorough inspection of your home and give their suggestions as to how to reduce the infestation. They will also tell you the steps they will take to completely eliminate pest infestation as well as the invasion of rodents of your home.

3. Once you get the quotes from two or three service providers, you should zero in on that provider who renders high quality services at the most reasonable costs.

How to Recognize A Termite Infestation

Having a termite infestation can have very devasting effects on the house. The first step is to recognize the various signs that indicate that there may be an infestation in your home. Regular inspections by professionals can also help you reduce the ill effects of a termite infestation as the signs may be very subtle for a common person to recognize.

Here are a few of signs that could indicate that your home may have a termite infestation

1.Galleries that have an irregular pattern of mud like substance.

2.In homes that have a lot of wood, the termites can excavate the inner portion in such a way that there is only a very thin outer layer that remains. In this case, even if the termites break through the outer layer they use a mud like substance that is usually a mix of saliva, feces, and soil.

3.The presence of swarmers or flying ants can be an indicator that there can be a termite nest near by.

4.You can most often see the swarmers out during the day time so they are a sure indicator of a nest that can be easily identified. Observing these flying ants outside the house in the yard near trees can mean that the termite infestation is only outside, while on the other hand seeing these swarmers on the inside of your home can mean that the infestation is somewhere inside the house.

5.Another great indicator of a termite infestation is mud tunnels. The main termite nest will usually be present in the ground while they create a network of tunnels inside their food source ie wood. The tunnels will usually have traces of the mud like substance that is the first thing that you will notice about the termites. Although the presence of these mud tunnels are an indicator that the termites are present the absence of these tubes do not mean that the home is free of these pests. The insects can also reach the window sills and other wooden objects in the house through cracks and breaks in the main foundation of the home.

6.You can easily check if you need termites control in the mud tunnels are active by breaking these tubes if the tubes are rebuilt then they are active tubes as the termites usually rebuild any damaged tubes. On the other hand, a tube that is not being used will be dry and you can crumble it very easily.

7.A pile of wings that are shed from swarmers can be an indication that the termites are in the next development phase.

8.There are different types of termites mainly the reproductive termites and the workers. Being able to identify these insects can be very helpful. However, the absence of visible termites does not mean that there are no termites near the structure.

9.If you observe tiny holes in the wood of your home or the paint on the walls buckling then it can mean that there is a termites nest in your home.

10.As wood is the main food source of the termites damage to wood at major structural points can also mean that there is a termite infestation near by. Additionally, if you hear a dull thud or a hollow sound when you knock on the wood can mean that there is damage to the wood due to termites.

11.When you notice such damage a little digging with something sharp like a pen knife can expose the network of tunnels that are made by the termites.

The damage that termites do to the wood in homes is devastating and can also cause the structure to crumble if the damage is very vast however if the proper termite control steps are taken at the first signs of infestation this damage can be avoided.

How the Quality of a Wedding Reception Gets Enhanced with a Live Band

If you love to party and if you feel that your wedding reception should have a great concert atmosphere, you must necessarily opt for a live band for the occasion. Though you can expect such a good result from a reputed band, you can further enhance the quality of the ambiance if you bestow your attention on a few points while embarking upon your research on live band music for occasions. Let us elaborate.

1. Remember having the right band to play during your wedding reception will make the occasion a memorable one. As experts point out, when people listen to the music that is played during the reception, they will easily slip into the right mood so they will soak in the ambiance and experience utmost enjoyment. For example, a jazz band singapore can give attendees a warm and fuzzy feeling to prepare for the wedding speech. In other words, having the most suitable band perform during your wedding reception will enhance the quality of the occasion.

2. Keep in mind the fact that the task of choosing the most suitable band for your wedding reception is almost similar to choosing other providers like the florists, bakers and photographers. This means that only if you carry out the task of making your choice carefully, you can have the best results. Therefore, when you are checking various types of live band music for occasions or when you are talking to the bands you have short-listed, ask them if they have dedicated and experienced performers with them. Never forget the fact that there may be world of difference between the performances given by experienced professionals and those provided by novices.

Firstly, experienced professionals will understand the mood of the audience and perform accordingly. On the contrary, those who lack experience may want to show-case what all they know and by doing so, they may make the audience go restless. In other words, they may not be able to read the pulse of the audience.

Similarly, experienced performers know the tricks of the trade and so, as soon as they observe that the enthusiasm of the audience has started sagging, they immediately come out with an enlivening music that revives the mood of the audience and enhances the quality of the occasion.

Further, experienced professionals may be aware that the invitees to a wedding reception may consist of both elderly people and younger folks as well as children. Hence, they will use their experience and versatility and play different types of music for catering to the expectations of every group. In other words, they will not allow any group to feel let down.

On the contrary, those performers who are new to the game may not know this secret and so, there are chances of some of your invitees feeling let down. Therefore, you are advised to opt for a band that has experienced performers with them so you need not worry if the quality of your wedding reception will be to your expectations.

3. Your wedding reception is an once-in-a-lifetime occasion and hence, you cannot afford to make compromises while choosing a live band. You should ensure that the band you engage performs the best and improves the quality of the event.

The only way to ensure this is to ask for references from the bands with which you are speaking. Once they provide references of the past users, you can get in touch with those past users and inquire if the track-records of the bands are good, if they will be able to perform in tune with the occasions for which they are hired and if they will provide optimum entertainment to the audience. This exercise will help in further short-listing the bands. You can delve still deeper and choose “the best among the equals.”

To summarize, if you carefully choose a band with an excellent track-record, you will certainly succeed in enhancing the quality of your wedding reception.

Is having a live wedding band nowadays worth it and how to go about doing it?

In today’s economy, during the greatest occasion of one’s lifetime, which is none other then your wedding. Anyone would be willing to splurge any amount of money in order to make it the grandest affair by investing in all sorts of costs. From the a posh hotel which a good menu, to a good host and hostess and recently, the rage has been hiring a live band during the wedding who not just entertain anyone but also cater to everyone’s musical and gastronomical taste. But at what costs? The burning question is whether it is worth going about severely burdening your wedding budget. Even if we would one to proceed it, how do we go about selecting the right live wedding band at the right costs and fit?

The following article by Sandy Malone from brides.com discusses upfront what are the hidden costs that are usually overlooked.

The Hidden Costs of a Live Wedding Band

Have you always envisioned a live band playing at your wedding reception? Do you have a specific kind of music in mind? Do you want a cover band, or traditional wedding band that plays a wide variety? Maybe you’re looking for a Big Band sound, or music reflective of the culture of the place that you’re getting married.

Live music can add an extra special boost to a wedding reception if you choose a good group. The rub is that bands (all kinds of bands) are expensive. How expensive depends on their popularity, their size, and whether they’re locally based for your wedding reception.

What you have to keep in mind when you’re pricing your live music options for your wedding reception is that there are frequently additional charges that you’ll also have to accommodate, and they probably won’t be mentioned when you ask how much the five or six hour performance will cost at your wedding reception.Read more here!

Now that we already know the hidden costs to look out for from a live wedding , we start exploring how to go about looking for the right live wedding band. At first glance, there are many ways to start. We could start by asking around for recommendations, asking our relatives and friend are great ways to start after after a while we realise that we would need to take the pragmatic approach to this problem given the large investment cost at stake. The following article by weddingbeauty gives some great insights how to get started.

A Guide To Hiring A Great Live Wedding Band

Getting the music right for your big day is crucial. Many people decide to cut corners and do their own music with an iPod, and if you get it right, it can work. On the other hand, it’s a safer bet to put your important wedding music into the hands of a professional, like a DJ. However, you might also be considering taking the big leap and hiring a live wedding band.

When it comes to music, nothing compares to the vibrancy of seeing and hearing it made right before your eyes – and for your big day, you deserve to splash out.

Of course, hiring a live band isn’t something you do every day of the week, and once you start to do your research, you’ll realise that knowing who to pick really is quite difficult. Great live music is often what people remember the most about a wedding reception – but the same is also true when the wedding band was… less than great.

So here’s how to get that important choice right, our tips for hiring a wedding band. Read more here !

Finally now we have covered the hub and spokes of hiring a live wedding band in singapore, how to look about managing the costs and also looking at getting the right live wedding band. It seem like we are all set and ready to go! The big question reads, is that all? Are we ready to proceed with this big investment? No! We have missed out one very important point, that is, the main product deliverable. The music! The following article by ioulord discusses whether to go for a live wedding band or a function band as it determines on the genre of music and type of singers we will be getting.

Do You Need To Find A Function Band Or Live Wedding Band?

If you are having a function such as a birthday party, corporate event or you are having a wedding – the music is going to be one of the most important aspects of the party. Of course you have other things like the food and the flowers and or decorations, but if you need a way to jazz up the party (no pun intended) you are going to need good entertainers to spice it up. One of the ways of going about this is to get a band for hire – for a party or occasion or to hire a London wedding band for your nuptials or the party afterward.

In order to do this you are going to have to do a bit of research, but in the end it’s really going to pay off big time! Just because you need to hire a band doesn’t necessarily mean it’s going to cost you an arm and a leg. There are numerous “companies” out there that are willing to work with your discretion and your budget. Usually they will work with a five to nine piece line-up, but if you are willing and able to spend a little more you can incorporate more band members and singers along with the basic five-piece band with one, two or three brass players according to your budget.Read more here!

To conclude, getting a live band for your wedding really requires thorough decision making cost-wise most importantly followed by how are to do about researching and locating the right band, how to utilize you’re your existing networks to gain information and how to reach out to additional resources in order to make an informed decision and lastly determining if your live band has the right musical products and talents to meet yours and your audience’s musical appetite.

 

 

 

Top Ten Most Valuable Records

After searching the Internet for the world’s Top Ten Most Valuable Vinyl Records, one can be sure that the lists can be subjective, vary from country to country and will fluctuate over time. For instance, the copy of John Lennon & Yoko Ono “Double Fantasy” LP, the one that he signed for Mark David Chapman just a few hours before he was shot to death, is at the top of a common list. However, the record remains unsold, so the asking price may not be exactly what the record is worth. With the recent death of Michael Jackson, copies of “Thriller” were selling at more than three times what the record price guides listed and Jackson’s rare vinyl has also skyrocketed. Although the prices for his more common records will even out, one can assume his rare vinyl will remain at high prices.

In all actuality, a record is worth what someone will pay for it; which is true of most collectibles. Many variables will effect the price, such as demand, the death of an artist, the condition of the vinyl itself, just to name a few. However, in the case of vinyl records, there are some recording artists that always show up on the ‘top ten’ lists, including the Beatles and the Sex Pistols. My guess is that there will always be a demand for the Fab Four and the Sex Pistols, hence the prices for their records and the rare ones will always be on the high end of any list. Also, the lists include acetates, which are another rare form of a record release.

Now, chances are slim that you will find one of these rare records at a flea market or garage sale, but as all vinyl record collectors know, it is the hunt that is one of the most satisfying elements of the hobby.

If we take a look at the three lists below we see that the early Beatles work done as the Quarrymen show up on both the Wikipedia list and the list from the Telegraph in the UK. Also, the Beatles show up as the one that command the most money at www.popsike.com (according to their database).

Placing A Value On Vinyl Records

One element of the ever changing music industry is that the sale of vinyl records has increased and that these audio treasures are still in demand. In our age of digital products and downloads, there are still millions who prefer the sound and experience of vinyl records. In this article, let’s explore how a person can ascertain just how much a particular record is worth.

There are many factors and variables that come into play, whether buying or selling records. The ‘grading’ of a record is very subjective and because no two people grade the record the same, many problems arise when reselling new and used vinyl.

The value of a record is, and this is putting it in a very simplistic way, is what a person is willing to pay another person or business for the record. But there are many other variables that must be considered to put a value on a record, let’s look at them:

There is a common misconception that because a record is old, that it is valuable. On the contrary, some records that are just a few months old have more value than some that are 50 years old. And, while it is true that some bands and artists are more sought after and command a better resale price, the condition of the record is paramount, whether the record is a week old or seventy years old; age is not a determining factor, but condition is.

Grading

There are several different methods of grading records and unfortunately there is no ‘standard’ that everyone uses. But let’s look at one of the more widely accepted grading methods, which is in the “Rockin’ Records” price guide, written by the genre’s leading authority; Jerry Osborne. In this method, the record are given a certain ‘grade’ as to their condition, here are the grades:

Mint (M)- an absolutely perfect record in every way-to allow for a tiny blemish or flaw, this record would be considered Near Mint, which is the highest grade used the in the Osborne record price guides and what the prices in the record guides reflect.

Very Good (VG) – records in this condition should have a minimum of visual or audio imperfections that do not detract from your enjoyment and listening pleasure. You may see a plus or minus after this grade.

Good (G) – From a practical standpoint, this grade may mean the record is a good enough copy to fill a gap in your collection until you can secure a better copy. This record will show obvious signs of wear and tear and play all the way through without skipping.

The prices quoted in the record guides are for records in Near Mint condition. Osborne explains what you can expect using the following formula. For very good condition, the record is worth 25-50% of the Near Mint price listed in his guides. For Good, figure 10-25% of the near mint price given in his guides. Another common mistake is that people take the price in the guides, grade the record and then do not ‘downgrade’ for the flaws and condition issues.

Another confusing aspect to this method is that some records might be listed as VG + or VG- or VG++ or NM-. But, what exactly is the person grading the record mean with these notations? Is it for the record, the sleeve, the LP jacket or the record itself? You can see why this way of grading can be very confusing to someone just starting a record collection.

Osborne also suggests a ten point grading scale and some feel that this system allows for a more precise description of the record than the mint, very good, good scale. Here is the scale:

10-Mint
9- Near Mint
8- better than VG but below NM
7- VG
6- better than Good but below VG
5- Good
4- better than Poor but below Good
3- Poor
2 and 1- why bother adding these to a collection?

I prefer the ten point scale, as it eliminates some of the confusion and provides a better description than VG- or VG++ or G-. One important factor that Osborne stresses is to be honest about the condition and grade, meaning apply the same standard to the record you want to buy or sell as you would want the seller or buyer to give. But, and this goes along with Osborne’s recommendation, is a TRUST factor. You must assume and trust that the person giving the grade to the record is honest and will be held accountable for the grade.

But just because a record is visually acceptable may not mean it plays that way, so one must take that into consideration as well. So if you are buying a record you may also ask if it plays the grade that it was given. A long time ago, these two went together, but it seems that we have gotten away from this.

Another element in the grading process, and I have seen this done several ways, is the condition of the LP jacket, picture sleeve, inserts and liner notes. Some sellers may give you two ratings, one for the record and one for the other elements. There are some very valuable album covers and picture sleeves (from 45 rpm records) and these must also be accounted for in the selling price or the value of a vinyl record.

As you can see, this is a ‘gray area’ when buying and selling vinyl and one that is very subjective. Condition is the most important factor when buying and selling vinyl and when buying records you must be able to find a trustworthy seller and ascertain which method they are using to grade what they have for sale. And, as previously stated, the record price guides lists the prices for records in near mint condition, so that must be taken into account. Obviously, this all can be a bit confusing for a beginner, but a little common sense and education can help any buyer in their quest to add to their collection.

Scarcity

Many, many millions of vinyl records are in circulation, with almost every household in the US, either having some vinyl records at one time or another. We even had a vinyl record ‘boon’ from around 1955-1980. But, how many of those records are still around and more importantly, what condition are they in?

For instance, rhythm and blues records from the 1950’s suffered from poor promotion and publicity, therefore there were fewer of these that were pressed. The record companies that produced these particular records were small and lacked the resources that the larger record companies enjoyed, some may have been limited to only one or two thousand being pressed, On the other hand, the Beatles records were massed produced and they benefited from much larger pressings and are a fairly common record (depending on the label) and some are not worth as much as one might think. This brings us to another element-demand.

Demand

Like any other commodity, vinyl records are subject to the old supply and demand adage that is prevalent in any free market society. Record values were affected by the Internet age, especially with the many online auction sites. Records that were thought to be rare and valuable suddenly came out of the closets and basements and were put up for sale and brought some prices down. But, that has evened out at this time and the record price guides and prices reflect that. If there is a demand for a certain genre or artist, chances are the price will go up, more people want these type of record and there is more competition for them. For instance, the music genre called Northern Soul (commonly known as Motown) enjoyed resurgence in sales in the past few years, driving up the prices. Conversely, there is not a lot of demand for classical music (in fact, there aren’t even any price guides for this genre of music); therefore you cannot expect to get much for the records.

History

This element of putting a value on a vinyl record goes hand in hand with the relative scarcity of the record. Many special musical genres in recorded music often command a higher price because of their place in music history. For instance, the early roots of country music from the early 1930s and 1940’s, early jazz recordings, the rock and roll ‘infancy’ recordings (including rockabilly, rhythm and blues, the ‘girl’ groups of the 60’s, ) are often highly sought after and therefore of more value. Some early Motown, psychedelic music, surf music, garage band rock and doo wop often command a higher price because these are records that have a prominent historical value in recorded sound.

Artist or Group

Obviously, there are some musical icons that sell better than others and are in command. Early Elvis records, the Beatles, the Rolling Stones, Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin, Bob Dylan, Jimi Hendrix just to name a few all command top dollar because there is always a demand for these records. But that is not to say that some obscure bands or artists are precluded from being valuable, on the contrary, there may be an artist that you have never heard of and the record may be selling for thousands of dollars.

LP Jacket, Inserts, Picture Sleeves

When issued, some records came with an added incentive and that is also collected and can add value to a record. LP’s came with fantastic artwork, inner sleeves with liner notes, lyrics, posters, cut out and all these elements are included when establishing a resale price. Again, the condition of these ‘extras’ must be taken into account when ascertaining the value of the record. 45rpm records came with picture sleeves and some of them are even more valuable than the record that they may hold.

The Year of Release

First pressings may be of more value than a reissue of the same record ten years later. For instance, a Beatles record that was released in 1965 is of more value to a collector than a reissue that was released in 1980.

The Record Label

Some record labels are also more collectible than others. Old R & B or jazz on the record label Bluenote is generally worth more than if the same music and artist are released on another label. Another example is Beatles’ records released on the Capitol record label as opposed to the Vee Jay label. For instance, if you were to own the record “I Want To Hold Your Hand” on the Capitol label, it will generally be worth more than the same record on the Apple label (which was formed after the record was issued). Certainly there are exceptions, but there are a lot of record labels that suffered from poor distribution and, quite frankly, there are not that many to be had.

Stereo vs. Mono

As a general statement, all 45’s manufactured by all record labels after 1970 were pressed in stereo. But there were labels that issued records between 1957-1970 that were issued in both formats, and you would have to check the catalog number of the record to find out which one you may have. Some mono versions may be worth more than there stereo counterparts, while some records in stereo may be worth more than mono; it all depends on the artist and label.

As we review this article, we see that there are many elements that can factor into ascertaining what a record may be worth. We have covered the basics, there are more like picture discs, colored vinyl, promotional releases, misprints, why even the color of the record label may affect the price; but this is a good starting point. One element we should highlight is what you get for a record can also be determined to who you are selling the record to, a dealer will probably give you only a portion of what the record may be worth, or you may be able to find a rare and valuable record at a garage sale for pennies on the dollar. And that is the fun part for record collectors!