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Common Plumbing Problems That Can Easily Get Expensive

December 08, 2017

Plumbing problems may be simple household issues, but it can potentially drain your pocket. That’s why it’s best to make sure that your home’s plumbing system is always in its best shape. Here are the most expensive household plumbing repairs that homeowners in Singapore typically experience.

1. Clogged Drains
It’s very common to experience clogged drains from time to time. However, the severity of the clog depends on the things that caused the stoppage. Some causes of clog can simply be removed with plumbing tools like plungers, but there are also cases when stock-ups happen deep down the pipes, and solving such problems require professional plumbing services.

2. Leaky Faucets
Constant dripping noise is enough to drive you insane, but so is receiving a water bill that’s twice higher than your usual bill. Did you know that an unattended leak in your faucet can waste around 10,000 gallons of water a year? It’s like throwing away water that can do 270 loads of laundry. That’s a lot of water, and therefore a lot of money you are wasting. Although you can’t feel the slight increase in your monthly water bill, it can cost you hundreds of dollars each year.

3. Low Water Pressure
This may not seem like a big deal, but low water pressure can end up costing you more. The effect might not be on your water bill, but often in the cause of the problem that makes this plumbing issue expensive. The cause of the low pressure could be leaky pipes, malfunctioning water heater or underground piping issues. For plumbing in Singapore contractors to accurately detect the problem and prevent it from getting more expensive, have it checked by a professional and reliable plumber as soon as possible.

4. Running Toilet
A toilet that doesn’t stop from flushing is obviously a very costly problem, which can raise your water bill for up to thrice its usual rate. Running toilets can be because of a number of reasons. Sometimes, it can be fixed by simply adjusting some parts such as the flush handle, while other times some parts needs to be replaced. However, regardless of the cause, leaky toilets need professional plumbing services, so make sure to have it checked by a professional plumber.

5. Gas Leaks
Gas leaks can cause serious damage to property; therefore, it’s an expensive issue if left unattended. If you suspect that there’s gas leakage in your premises, evacuate your place and call a professional 24 hours plumber immediately. In some cases, people try to tamper gas lines for the purpose of sharing or tapping. These activities are illegal in Singapore, and can ultimately result in loss of property or even life. Do not attempt to fix gas plumbing problems without the help of a plumbing contractor certified in gas plumbing services.

6. Clogged Sewer Line
Clogged sewer lines are a major problem for homeowners to tackle on their own because sewer lines are oftentimes inaccessible. Even if you can access your sewer line, it requires special equipment to have your line unclogged. If unclogging is done incorrectly, the clog can cause sewage back-ups. This can be dangerous to your health as the noxious odour and toxins in the biological wastes from the sewage will enter your home through the toilet, sinks and/or drains.

Some tips to prevent plumbing repairs:
• Avoid Hanging Things on the Plumbing Line
This is a problem often found in basements, where plumbers are surprised to see wet clothes hanged from exposed pipes. These pipes may feel sturdy, but they are not designed to support weight. You would be surprised how heavy a few shirts can get, especially when wet, which can cause the pipes to destabilize and burst.

• Do Not Flush Sanitary Items Down the Toilet
The toilet is meant to hold things that we would rather not mention. If you throw anything else in the toilet that you think will not flush, such as tissues, cotton balls, wet wipes, cotton swabs, napkin and other sanitary items, you are setting yourself for a major toilet disaster.

• Inspect Leaks Right Away
A few drops of water under the kitchen sink may look harmless, but not inspecting the cause of the leak could end up more than just a few drops in a short span of time. When you find even just a small leak, call a 24 hours plumber right away. Do not wait until a few drops turn into a paddle of water, as water can potentially damage surrounding structures and fixtures, leading to more extensive and expensive plumbing works.

• Hire a Professional Plumber
Hire a reliable plumbing contractor to inspect your home’s plumbing system at least once a year. A highly skilled plumber can detect and fix complex issues that ordinary DIY-ers cannot. A clogged sewage and a damaged underground piping are just two of the many issues that are impossible to fix on your own, since such issues require advanced skills and plumbing equipment. To ensure your property’s safety and plumbing system’s functionality, only work with a certified and experienced professional.

Spending on plumbing works is never fun, but it’s necessary to protect your home—your investment. The thing you really don’t want to happen is spending way more than you want to for fixing piping issues. By being aware of the most costly plumping repairs and ways to avoid such problems will help you save money in the long run.

How to Make Your Office Printer and Copier Machine Last Longer

November 30, 2017

Any type of business in Singapore cannot function without paperwork, that is why the office printer and copier machine are essential items in any enterprise. But even with improvements in the hardware and software, some machines have longer lifespans than others.

How do you make the most of your office printer or copier machine? What are the steps that should be taken to reduce the cost of major repairs and replacements? Are there factors your company should consider before you buy printer in Singapore office supply shops?

1. Buy the Right Equipment. When you buy printer from a manufacturer, make sure that you get an estimate of the print volume per day so you can determine how many printers are needed in the office. Even a high-end laser printer or copier can get overworked if it’s printing nonstop for the duration of the day. Get to know what features are included in the machine to make the workflow in the office much easier, then divide the users according to the number of copiers or printers and specific printing needs. Special printers like the graphic art printer or the colour printer should only be used for quality and colored documents, but if you can print in standard quality, always choose that option.

2. Train Personnel in Proper Use of Equipment. All the employees who need to print documents will have to be briefed about the proper usage of the laser printer or the copier. If you have a multifunction device for example, the users should know how to utilize all the features, so that minor incidences due to lack of knowledge about the machine can be reduced. This includes not just the operator but even the remote users. Each office printer or copier machine will have a limited number of users, so that the machines are not overworked.

3. Assign an Operator. Even if you train all the users, you will still need to assign at least one operator for the machines, so that the employees have someone to turn to when something goes wrong. The key operator should be an expert or a technician from the copier leasing from Singapore company who knows how to solve office printer and copier machine problems.

4. Position the Printer and Copier Properly. The office printer and copier should be placed in an area away from traffic, open windows and doors, direct heat or cold, food and plants, and other office equipment. The machines should be accessible to everyone and must have adequate room to operate. If possible, there should be one area in the office specifically assigned for the laser printers and the copier machines.

5. Read the Product Manual. Before using the new printer in Singapore, the key operator and end users should read the manual to make sure that they know how to use the office printer or the copier properly. The manual will also include a list of compatible paper or printing materials, correct toner or cartridges for the machine, and instructions for troubleshooting.

6. Use Quality Materials. A lot of offices in Singapore often try to save money by purchasing low-quality printing materials and ink cartridges, but this is doing more harm on the equipment. Read the manufacturer’s specifications about the type of materials that are compatible for your laser printer model or your copier. Low-quality printouts are often the result of low-quality paper and ink, not a faulty machine. This is crucial with special printers like the graphic art printer or the colour printer that need the right photo paper to save ink and produce quality printouts.

7. Use Standard or Economy Mode. If you don’t need high-quality printouts, switch to standard mode to conserve ink. This will also speed up the printing or copying process.

8. Load the Paper Properly. Paper jams are common because the end users do not know how to load the paper properly. This can be reduced if the employees are trained in the proper use of the machines. Place instructions near the office printer or the copier about proper paper loading. Paper jams also leave some paper in the machine, that is why it should be carefully inspected before proceeding with any printing job.

9. Practice Preventative Maintenance. Regular service checks are essential to extend the lifespan of the office machines. Schedule these checks with a professional technician who will look for minor repairs and can clean the machines. It would also be better if you have an in-house operator who can do these for you.

10. Keep the Office Clean and Organized. The office should be kept clean to prevent buildup of dust and debris on the office printer, copier, and the other equipment as well. The employees should be reminded not to touch the copier glass with their hands and to clean the paper tray before printing.

11. Get the Most Out of Ink Cartridges. Change the printer’s settings if your company does not have to print high-quality documents all the time. Choose the grayscale and change the resolution to low-quality or draft and use smaller fonts, photos, and illustrations to save on ink. The cartridges should also be kept clean by the technician with a cotton swab or warm water to prevent clogging and drying.

12. Regular Cleaning of Equipment. The glass of the copier machine should be kept clean using a non-abrasive cloth, while the other parts should be dusted off with fine-haired brush. The ink nozzle will need occasional cleaning with a cotton swab dipped in alcohol. When not in use, the office printer and copier should not be used as a shelf or table for other items.

13. Turn Off the Copier or Printer. Make sure to turn off the copier or the printer before any maintenance and cleaning can be done. If there is no need to print or copy anything, the machines should also be given time to cool.

Get to Know the Logistics Laws in Singapore

November 20, 2017

Picking the right freight forwarding services for your company can help you focus on improving and expanding your business, but besides considering the types of services that a logistics company offer, you should also be aware of some of the laws in importation, exportation, trade and clearance documentation and permits, licensing and warehousing, the free trade zones, the fees, offences, errors and penalties, and the list of prohibited goods. On top of that, you should at least have an idea about international transportation if you need air freight or sea freight for your international freight needs.

Sounds complicated, right? But knowing all these can also help you find the right freight forwarder in Singapore, because you understand what your company specifically needs. Let’s start by defining the terms you will often hear from your logistics company.

    1. Freight Forwarder

    A freight forwarder is ideal for small to medium-sized businesses that want to transport goods that will fit in one full container. This is much easier than utilizing postal or delivery services which will cost you more if you need to deliver more goods. Freight forwarding services after all is affiliated with shipping lines, air freight, and both local freight and international freight. They can arrange all the paperwork for you and negotiate prices for the transportation of goods with other logistics services. They can also perform other tasks for you, such as Customs clearance, insurance, warehousing, and inventory.

    2. Shipping Line

    The shipping line should be obvious. It is a freight forwarding Singapore company that operates ships and containers to transport goods around the world. Shipping lines are mostly employed by large companies, although small-time clients can book one container for cargo. So, why not contact a shipping company directly instead of going through a freight forwarder in Singapore? The shipping company usually charges full for each container regardless if you can fill each container or not. Through freight forwarding services, however, you can get competitive prices instead.

    3. Shipping Company

    A shipping company, also called an exporter, is the party responsible for the transportation of your goods, but they could also be the manufacturer, the seller, or the company where the point of origin of the product is to be picked up.

    4. Consignee and Customer

    The consignee refers to the party that receives the goods at its place of destination and is also called the receiver or importer, while the customer is the party that is responsible for booking and paying for the shipment of items. The customer contacts a freight forwarder in Singapore and the freight forwarder in turn arranges the shipment with a company that offers logistics services to move the merchandise efficiently from one place to another.

Defining which is which is important when fulfilling the requirements for importation and exportation of goods, because that will also determine your rights, responsibilities, and liabilities. Don’t worry though, because the freight forwarding services is well-versed in both local freight and international freight, and it is their task to make the process easier for you.
 

 
How International Shipping is Done

Singapore imports goods from various parts of the world, whether it’s for a small-time business or international corporations. This is also perhaps the most complicated part of the transportation of goods because a lot of parties are involved to complete it.

The logistics company is trained to deal with the shipping company, Customs brokers, air freight, sea freight, and other parties to make the shipment of goods easier. Small shipments that will fit in one standard ocean shipping container (less than 20 cubic meters), also called Less than Container Load (LCL), go through the following process: haulage (origin), handling (origin), Customs clearance (for exportation), sea freight, Customs clearance (for importation), handling (destination), and haulage (destination).

It should be clear in the contract which one will be paying for each step (yes, there are fees and documents for each), as well as establishing which one is liable for the items transported. That way, if something happens to cargo, someone will pay for the damage.

Import Procedure in Singapore

The Singapore Customs website contains all the necessary information needed for importation in Singapore, so this section will just be an overview of what you should expect during the freight forwarding process.

All the items that are imported into the country are subject to the regulations of the Customs Act, Regulation of Imports and Exports Act, and Goods and Services Tax Act.

The importer or the receiver of the goods is required to get a Customs permit regardless if the importer is an individual or a company. The receiver is specifically required to prepare the declaration requirements and the taxes for the goods, whether it’s a non-dutiable goods or dutiable goods, based on the insurance, cost, and freight values.

Import Requirements in Singapore

Besides the Customs permit, the commercial invoice is also needed to determine which party is the consignee and the importer of the items. You are also required to do the following:

    1. Check if the imported merchandise is prohibited
    2. Pay for the GST (Goods and Services tax) and other duties
    3. Deposit the merchandise in free trade zones in Singapore, regardless if it was transported through sea freight or air freight
    4. Provide containerised cargo documents for clearance

Documents should be kept within the next five years as reference if any issue arises. These will include the books of accounts, commercial invoice, packing list, air waybill, bills of lading, certificate of origin and analysis, insurance certificate, and other related documents.

Standard Trading Conditions of Freight Forwarders

The Singapore Logistics Association website contains details about the standard trading conditions that are practiced by the freight forwarding services in Singapore.

The document includes the obligations of the customer, instructions in the handling of goods and the services, indemnities and charges, rights of the company, liabilities, compensation, and laws and jurisdiction. There are currently over 500 members which follow these standards of logistics services.
 

How to Find a Reliable Aircon Contractor

November 03, 2017

Find a reliable aircon servicing contractor that will ensure quality service to your air conditioning unit needs. Other than that, you need to find a reliable AC contractor to ensure that any repair made to the unit will be safe to you and your family. Faulty installation can be very costly and dangerous. Secondly, in Singapore a reliable and honest contractor will give you fair quotation for aircon maintenance and all-over system cost. So, if you’re thinking of having your Air Conditioning units repaired or checked, here are some tips and guidelines in looking for reliable air conditioning contractors.

1. Look for a contractor that belongs to a well-known company or organization

Well-known air conditioning companies (e.g. Carrier, Goodman, Rheem) follows strict guidelines that their every member must follow. Therefore, you can be sure that the contractor knows he’s doing very well and ensure safety repair and installation of your air conditioning unit.

2. Ask for reviews from clients who have had aircon maintenance done for them

Call a few aircon servicing contractors and ask for references from their previous clients. Do not just listen to their promises. Listen and hear directly from their clients the feedbacks and experiences they’ve been through from the company.

3. Verify if the contractor is using the most recent procedure and equipment

The contractor that does aircon servicing in Singapore should have well-adopted the modernization of technologies. He should also be asking about your air-conditioning needs and whether and use up-to-date guidelines and procedures in practicing aircon repair. If you have had your maintenance done by someone else, your new contractor would probably want to know about that also.

4. Verify if the technicians have sufficient on-the-job experiences

Look for certifications from different seminars and trainings they have undergone related to their work. Ask if they have been to skill enhancement schools or if they are part of any related organizations. This will ensure that you are working with highly skilled operators in Singapore.

5. Verify how long the contractor has been working in the same company

Know first how long the contractor has been working in the aircon servicing company and check whether he has an office in the area. This is for you to know where you will be able to find him in case something goes wrong with your AC unit or if you need AC maintenance. Also, ask for his office contact number and personal number where you can reach 24/7.

6. Verify whether the company is a licensed distributor

Licensed distributors are more reliable, can offer better warranty services, and have higher expertise in aircon repair. They have direct contacts and very well-versed to the air con unit brands they are selling.

7. Ask for quotations

Call a few aircon servicing companies and ask for their prices. By this, you will know who is overcharging you. If you don’t have any idea about this matter, seek help from your friends. The quotation should state all the prices with its designated description for clearer explanation. If you have doubts, don’t hesitate to call and clarify with the contractors.

8. Do a background check

Search at the Singapore licensing office for any complaints held against the contractor regarding their aircon maintenance and other services. Check also the company’s history, where the contractor works, for any irregularities. Also, check their websites and validate whether the contractor’s information are timely and accurate.

How to Choose a Good BBQ Caterer

November 02, 2017

Finding a good caterer is an important part for holding large-scale events like corporate events, wedding, and even on small affairs like parties and family gatherings. Unfortunately, a standardized grading system for caterers hasn’t been established, and anybody can put up their own catering business. But there’s nothing to worry about, here’s how you can choose the good – if not best – caterer in Singapore that will make your event memorable, for the right reasons.

1. Get and listen to word-of-mouth recommendations and suggestions.

No amount of advertising can equal or replace a good suggestion of someone you know and trust. If your friend or acquaintance recommended an excellent caterer based on the services that were provided for their event, then that caterer might be someone that you should consider making business with. Conversely, it’s also important to heed any bad reviews about a particular bbq catering company.

2. Schedule a food tasting session with the caterer.

If the caterer that you’ve chosen provides meals for large events, then it shouldn’t be a problem to them if you want to schedule a food tasting session. Do remember though that the bbq catering from Singapore food that you’ll be tasting will be the best meals that the caterer can produce. If you’re planning to go for a bbq catering service then it’s important to check on what kind of satay or barbecue they are offering. You should also understand that there’s a huge difference between the qualities of the meal that’s prepared for two persons compared to a meal for 500 people.

3. Put the specialty of the caterer into consideration.

There are some caterers that specialize in handling big events, while there are those that can only cater to small intimate events. The former have the expertise and equipment that can professionally handle large numbers of guests, while the latter can only deal with a limited number of guests or might only offer services like delivering the catered food to your venue. Keep these things in mind and be wary of caterers who claim that they can do all the services that you want.

4. Consider the kind of services you’ll need for the event.

Since you’ve already considered the services that the catering companies can offer, it’s now time to consider the kind of services you’ll need for your affair. Do you need services that only includes food preparation, delivery and set up? Or do you want to be provided with trained staff and support personnel?

To decide on this, consider the kind of event that you’ll be having first. If you’re event will be more of a formal affair that requires plated service then choose a caterer that specializes in handling big events. If you want to be more laidback and go for a barbecue party instead, then that’ll need a different catering service. You could also go online to check and get a rough idea about the services of each catering company in Singapore.

5. Ask for references from previous clients.

Since you’re entrusting a catering company to provide the food for your event, it is important that you ask for some references. Ask the caterer to provide you with the names of their clients as well as referrals of the events that they worked with.

6. Contact the local health department in your area.

Catering companies in Singapore are subject to regulation and licensing by their respective local health department, so there will be records in case there are any complaints or issues about a particular catering company. If the catering service that you’re considering have any reported issues or complaints then we suggest that you get another catering company instead.

7. Ask for the quotation of the services that you’re asking from them.

Asking for the quotation of the catering services should be the first step in hiring a caterer. It’s important to ask for the bottom line price as the charge for getting a wedding catering service is different from a bbq catering service. But be cautious when your caterer drops the price of their services as it could mean a drop in the quality of food and service as well.

Hiring Contractors for Your Rental Property

October 17, 2017

Whether you’re a property owner in Singapore or a newly hired property manager, when it comes to handling a rental property, keeping every unit in tiptop condition is a number one necessity. Therefore, it really pays off to hire a professional contractor.

Before you start scanning the yellow pages and asking family, friends, and neighbors around, find out first how you should hire a qualified contractor to take care of your investment property.

Professionals Are a Must

Professionals provide quality work, and it is the most important matter in making sure that your rental units are in their best condition. Professional contractors vary mainly in knowledge and skills, and a little research beforehand can ensure that you hire the best worker.

When hiring contractors for property management, you need to consider the quality of work and the completion time. Though the cost must be considered as well, it shouldn’t be the only deciding factor. Look for someone who is an expert in a specific task, and not someone who claims that he knows how to do various things. For instance, if you need someone who does property management in Singapore to fix your electric lines, hire an electrician. If you need someone to fix the pipes and faucets, hire a plumber. Never be fooled by a contractor who claims that he “specializes” in 10 different jobs.

Require Certifications and Licenses

Singapore has a public database for licensed and certified workers related to property management and construction industry. Hiring someone with valid license and/or certification will ensure great work and protect you from great loss if in case the hired worker damages your property or himself. Countries have created regulations to protect property owners from scammers that agree to contracts that will never be fulfilled. When you choose to hire professional contractors, estimations are often free of charge, and all works are invoiced and well-detailed after problem inspection is completed.

Payment System for Contractors

An initial payment of 20 to 30 percent is typically required by contractors to get the work started. This enables your workers to purchase all necessary materials and start the work. If your managing agent employs separate workers, the salary of those employees are already included in the down payment. Your managing agent should not require you to pay an additional amount because additional workers are required when the job starts. Always be mindful with the expenses and never fail to check it every after major purchase. Your remaining balance should only be settled after the work is done, and the contractor should be able to provide you with a warranty in case of component failure or workmanship error.

Hiring a reliable contractor for a rental property can be difficult, especially when you’re not informed with the right things to do. Following the tips above will help you avoid scammers and ensure that your property is maintained professionally. Lastly, if working with a management company, you can ask these experts for recommendations for hiring quality contractors.

Kahuna Ho Tram: Prime Investment Opportunities by the Beach

October 13, 2017

Big waves are set to take Vietnam in terms of real estate. Property investment opportunities have recently opened up, and they’ve never looked better with Kahuna Ho Tram, the newest addition to The Ho Tram Strip. Currently, it holds the title of the largest foreign-invested development in Vietnam, with over US$1.1 billion dollars’ worth in investment.
Having only been unveiled in the fourth quarter of this year, Kahuna Ho Tram sits as the hottest growth area in Vietnam, attracting investors looking to invest in condo units far and wide, with so much to offer and more.

The Condotel

The Kahuna Ho Tram condotel is conceptualized and designed by the leading firm in Ho Chi Minh City, Korn Architects. The design resembles a luxury liner about to make its maiden voyage across the open waters, with sleek, nautical lines capturing the essence of the perfect holiday beachfront experience.

This twelve-story beachfront tower has 244 keys divided among 164 condotel units. Of these units, fourteen have their own private Jacuzzis, and eight of them are penthouse units, each with its own indoor pool.

Surrounded by water from both the sea and the resort’s swimming pools, kahuna ho tram resort offers an amazing view of southern Vietnam and the vast field of The Bluffs that owners can wake up to every morning in the comfort of their own prime Vung Tau condo unit in Dur an Ho Tram.

Villas

Kahuna Ho Tram boasts of thirty-six double-key and eight beachfront villas, situated in the very heart of the development area with their own pools and private gardens. To add to that, each villa is fully furnished and in good turn-over condition.

The crown jewels are of course the eight single-key beach villas. Every single-key beach villa for sale not only has their own walkway and direct access to the beach, but also comes with maximum security to ensure the privacy of each guest.

Investors looking for a villa beside golf course will surely be delighted, as each beach villa for sale sits not far away from The Bluffs Golf Course, designed by golfer Greg Norman, which made Rank 78 in the world’s Top 100 golf courses.

Amenities

The Kahuna Ho Tram Strip and Kahuna Ho Tram Resort come with endless amenities for an enjoyable time. Complementing the view are the different restaurants, bistros, and bars lining the strip, making for an endless selection of fine food and drinks to indulge in by the sea.

Recreation and entertainment is never in short supply with Ho Tram, with multiple swimming pools, cinemas, karaoke, mini-golf, and so much more to choose from.

For an even more enjoyable time, guests looking to spend their holidays here can also make their way to the Grand Ho Tram Casino, which now services Vietnam nationals as well as foreigners. The Ho Tram Project currently leads the country in offering an international-level experience for enthusiasts.

Investment

First-time and veteran investors of all kinds looking to invest in condo units need not look further than Kahuna Ho Tram. There are several advantages to be gained in investing here, such as a minimum of eight percent guaranteed return within the first two years.
Throughout the ownership of the unit/villa, the net rental revenue is split sixty-forty in favor of the lessee. To achieve a twenty-year extension, the balance of the current lease is 41 years with the company’s resolve.

Another benefit is the ten-year rental pool agreement that applies to both the condotel units and villas, which when coupled with the 21-day-per-year free occupation per annum, means that owners too can fully enjoy the luxurious beachfront experience that Dur an Ho Tram has to offer.

10 Ways to Protect Your Children from Electrical Hazards

September 29, 2017

The moment you bring your baby from the hospital to your home, you should start thinking about child-proofing your entire house.

Do not wait too long. Before you know it, your child will start crawling around, exploring the house, investigating every single thing they can put their little hands on. The sooner you hide hazardous household chemicals and keep potential dangers away from your child’s reach, the better. Keep in mind that accidental injury is one of the leading causes of death among babies and toddlers, claiming more lives than health problems.

When setting up your home into a safer place for your little one, don’t forget about electricity. Other than blocking the staircases and using play mats in every room, you should also secure outlets within the reach of your child. Electrician services companies in Singapore recommend taking these precautions to ensure not just your baby’s, but your entire family’s safety from electrical hazards.

1. Install GFCIs

Ground Fault Circuit Interrupters (GFCIs) are essential in rooms with water source, such as kitchen and bathrooms. Enquire with some electrician services in Singapore to hire a professional electrician install a few of these around your house to protect everyone, but most especially including your child, against electrical shock. These devices automatically shut off the power when they detect current leaking from the circuit to the ground.

2. Avoid Using Extension Cords

As much as possible, avoid using extension cords and power strips in your child’s room. Kids have the tendency to chew on things, and you don’t want them to chew on something electrical. Moreover, you don’t want your kids to play with cords and wires and knocking over appliances that are plugged into them.

3. Use Electrical Outlet Caps

The cheapest way to prevent your child from sticking objects and his fingers into outlets is to use a packet of electrical outlet caps. These outlet covers are made of plastic and can be plugged directly into your power outlets. The exposed area of the cap is completely flat, making it difficult for a child to grip on it. If your child cannot poke anything into outlets, the safer he is. It’s that simple.

4. Unplug All Appliances

Before going to bed, turn off and unplug all your appliances at home. Just in case your toddler wakes up in the middle of the night and decides to play, no live wires within his reach. However, do still keep outlets and wires out of their sight, just because they are never good toys for children.

5. Shorten Cords

It happens many times—a lamp (or any other appliance) sits a foot away from the outlet, but has 10-foot long cord attached to it. The excess cord can loop around your child’s foot and either cause him to stumble or pull the lamp down on them. Either way, there will be tears. The best you can do is to buy a cord shortener. It looks neater than a coiled cable and is much safer when you have kids at home.

6. Cover Power Strips

Power strips are common in residential properties here in Singapore. They are convenient and economical since they can power multiple appliances at once. The downside is that they sit on the ground, which for a baby, could look like something to play with. A power strip cover is the ideal solutions for this. The cover slides into the strip and has an opening for the cords to hang out.

7. Use Nightlights

Use a nightlight to provide illumination in the dark for your child’s safety. Perfect for your kid’s bedroom and bathroom, so they won’t stumble over on things when they wake up in the middle of the night to pee. These lights come in a variety of styles, such as outlet-mounted or table mounted. One practical style is an outlet-mounted nightlight that fits over the two outlets of a duplex receptacle, blocking the unused electrical holes from the prying fingers of your toddler.

8. Educate Them

Older kids and pre-teens are old enough to understand the dangers of playing with electrical wires and devices. Explain to your kids that outlets cannot be overloaded with extension cords and power strips. They should not be using the TV, laptop, video game console and phone charger all at once in a single outlet. Make sure to explain the same thing for their room. Check every night that everything in their room is plugged out.

9. Regular Electrical Maintenance

Take care of loose and frayed wires that are located in accessible areas of your home. At least once a year, have a licensed electrician check your home’s electrical works. Ask your professional contractor to get those loose wires fixed and loose cords fasten to walls to avoid electrical shock and accidents.

10. Replace or Repair Faulty Appliances

If you have appliances that are hot or feel tingly to the touch, have it checked by a professional electrician right away. You really wouldn’t want your kids to get their hands on these appliances and possibly cause an injury to them. A good electrician will be able to detect the problem and fix it immediately before anything severe happens.

If you have kids at home, regular maintenance and repair of your home’s electrical system will not only keep your entire family safe, but also enjoy the benefits of properly-working electricity. With the help of a reputable electrician services company, you can protect your family and property from the risk of serious injury, damage and fire.

Trends in VoIP

September 26, 2017

Voice over Internet Protocol or VoIP is a type of service that allows you to make phone calls for free or at a cheaper price than a traditional phone system. As the name implies, it uses the Internet, that is why it is also referred to as Internet calling, IP telephone or Internet telephony. VoIP is hailed as the most innovative way of communication not just at home, but also in different business sectors, especially companies that have offices overseas.

In Singapore, it is considered by the business and communications sectors as the best way to cut down communication costs and is also an opportunity to tap into features that are not available in the traditional phone system.

Types of VoIP

VoIP works by converting the analog voice signals into digital signals (communication experts call this packets) and then transmitting these through a network or the Internet. Below are the different ways to use VoIP:

    1. Phone to Phone

    Sometimes called analog telephone adapter (ATA), phone-to-phone communication will let you receive and make calls if your standard landline is connected to a computer network. The phone will need the ATA to be able to convert analog into digital signals and transmit the converted signals with the use of VoIP.

    2. Computer to Computer

    Using VoIP, you will now be able to make and receive calls through a computer if both the sender and receiver are connected to the same network. This replaces the long-distance calls that are expensive, because you will only be paying for the voip in Singapore Internet service. Both the receiver and sender, however, need to install and register for the same software and use a speaker and a microphone to be able to connect. These VoIP software are usually free and easy to use.

    3. Phone to Computer

    Sometimes called IP phone, phone-to-computer communication is now possible and is gaining popularity even among those at home and not just in business. An IP phone is similar to your smart phones, but it needs an RJ45 connector so that it can use a network through a router. The IP phone already has built-in hardware and software for such purposes and it can even connect to Wi-Fi so that you can make calls anywhere even outside Singapore.

    4. Computer to Phone

    The same is true for making calls from your computer to a phone as long as both devices are using the same VoIP software and are connected to the Internet. It’s possible to make video calls as well if both the computer and the phone have microphones and speakers installed.

    5. Mobile Devices to Other Devices

    It is now possible to make calls from your phone to other mobile devices and vice versa, as long as both devices are using the same VoIP software and are connected to the Internet.

VoIP in Business

A hosted VoIP system for your business in Singapore is an investment that allows the company to do more things efficiently with less cost. Why is it cheaper than a traditional telephony system that has been used in business for years? VoIP integrates all the phone, video, and data bundles into one service that primarily uses the Internet.

That is why VoIP is a cheap, fast, flexible, and secure communications system for your business. But how will you know which hosted VoIP system is the right one for your company? Most companies hire a third party to host VoIP and to provide the necessary hardware as well.

When looking for a company that will handle your IP PBX telephone system, make sure that their services will fit the needs of the business. The perks usually include services and products for computer networking, cloud VoIP, PBX phone system, data management, telephone/computer and cabling, and video conferencing options. Other host companies have different packages for business VoIP and those that need special and advanced features.

The following services are the trends in business VoIP:

    1. Cloud VoIP

    The cloud VoIP is a system that is based on the technology called cloud computing. It means that all the data that are received, transmitted, and stored are placed in the Internet instead of storing them in the computer or other hardware. You may be surprised to know that cloud has been around since the 1990s as a means of storing data from point to point. Nowadays, cloud VoIP is considered an efficient way of storing data that will allow all users from the same company to access files regardless of the device used and the location of the user, as long as there is Internet connection. Businesses in Singapore can use cloud VoIP or cloud PBX (private branch exchange) even without the use of an IP PBX telephone system that will be discussed below.

    2. Hosted PBX

    Hosted PBX (private branch exchange) is type of VoIP system does not require the business to have their own VoIP system, but they can hire a third party to let them lease equipment and services. The company’s current telephone system may be used or replaced, and other devices such as mobile phones can be used through the hosted PBX. Employees can work outside the office premises with the use of different mobile devices, but they are still connected to the same VoIP system.

    3. PBX Phone System

    Some companies prefer a separate network for voice communications and another for data communications. This system is called IP PBX telephone system, PBX phone system or hosted PBX, which uses a converged voice and data network so that each employee in the company has one line to access the Internet, phone, and other non-traditional communication systems. It works as a telephone switching system within the company, allowing the employee to switch between the local traditional lines and VoIP, and vice versa.

Learning the Proper Form in Tennis for Beginners

September 08, 2017

Once you have learned the basics of playing tennis, it’s time to practice consistency of your form when serving, creating a spin, and judging the ideal height and distance (trajectory) of the ball.

 

Although having the correct form will not matter in the number of points you’ll get in a match, being able to do it naturally will help you hit the ball faster and to control the ball with less effort.

 

Basic Drills

Learning comes from repetition. The correct form and movement should come as natural as breathing for you allowing you to concentrate on your opponent. It might sound easy, but those endless drills given by your tennis coaching staff during your tennis lessons in Singapore are the key. You might be itching to play matches, but techniques that could win professional matches are learned through boring, repetitive drills; such as grips, swinging your arm with the racket, running around the court, receiving, and serving.

 

Basic Strokes

These are the basic strokes that the tennis coach in Singapore will teach you. Later, you can vary your strokes to adjust to different attacks.

  • When practicing this stroke during your tennis lessons, the tennis coach will tell you to use your dominant hand while the other will load the racket before you hit the ball. Tennis coaching instructions will drill you to bend your knees while the torso and hips are coiled.
  • This can be either a one-handed or two-handed backhand depending on which one you’re comfortable with and your reach. Some younger players will be advised by the tennis coach to use two-handed backhand to add more power to the stroke.
  • This refers to act of striking a ball while it’s still in the air and has not yet reached the surface of the court. To do a volley, you need to practice backswings while hitting the ball in front of you or from the side.
  • An overhead will not need a ball toss, but your coach will tell you to practice proper footwork to pull this off. Balance and positioning are key when trying to anticipate where the ball will drop next so that you can make adjustments to hit the ball overhead.

 

Basic Grips

To learn tennis by developing your own style, you should at least be familiar with the construction of the racket and with all the grips, which are all based on where the heel pad and the index knuckle are resting in your hand. The basic grips you will learn in your tennis lessons are the continental grip, eastern forehand grip, semi-western forehand grip, western forehand grip, two-handed backhand grip, eastern backhand grip, and semi-western or extreme backhand grip. The tennis coaching staff in Singapore can help you find which one works for you best if you’re still a beginner.

 

Basic Serves

There are four types of serves you should learn as a beginner from your tennis coach in Singapore, such as; the flat serve, slice, serve, kick serve, and underhanded serve. But what is common among these serves are the proper positioning of the feet when you make a stance, the tossing of a ball, the backswing, weight transfer and bending the knee, the trophy pose, racket drop, leg push, and the swinging up to contact or pronation. All these can be learned during the drills in your tennis lessons, that is why the only way to get better in tennis is to keep practicing.