Gear Up For National Fire Safety Month

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October is officially National Fire Safety Month, so now is a great time to take a look around your home and see where you might need to better prepare yourself. Unfortunately, emergencies can strike at any time but a little advance planning can go a long way in the event of a crisis. Orchard has the right selection of products to keep your home, your family, and your pets safe.

Smoke and carbon monoxide alarms

The right alarm acts as an early warning system that can buy you a few precious extra minutes to get yourself and your family out of harm’s way. The ideal system setup includes a mix of alarms to better prepare for fire
and gas emergencies. 

Plan to have at least one carbon monoxide (CO) alarm on each floor of your home, and one near an attached garage. Use a combination of photoelectric and ionization smoke alarms to detect both flaming and smoldering fires. For best results, place one of each in all bedrooms, with a minimum of one alarm on every floor. 

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Fire extinguishers
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In the event of a fire, the proper extinguisher can make the difference between a small mess and a total loss. Make sure you’re paying attention to the extinguisher type, because each is designed to take on different kinds of fires. If you grab the wrong one by accident, you can end up causing the fire to spread.

Here are the three most common types of fires you may encounter:

CLASS A FIRES:

Ordinary materials like wood, paper, cloth, trash, and plastics. Class A extinguishers
are typically filled with water or air-pressurized water.

CLASS B FIRES:

Flammable liquids and gases like gasoline, petroleum oil, paint, and propane. Often filled with a dry material that removes oxygen to smother the fire.

CLASS C FIRES:

Involves energized electrical equipment like motors and appliances. Turning off the power changes the fire class.

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AFCI breakers

An Arc Fault Circuit Interrupter (AFCI) breaks the circuit when it detects and electric arc in the circuit. An arc-fault is a dangerous electrical problem caused by damaged, overheated, or stressed electrical wiring or devices. They can occur when older wires become frayed or cracked, if a nail or screw damages a wire behind a wall or when outlets or circuits are compromised.

AFCI breakers should be installed by a licensed electrician but to save on costs, purchase your breaker ahead of time at Orchard.

Safes

It’s important to keep all of your items safe in the event of a fire or flood. These specially designed boxes can help protect documents, discs, DVDs, and much more.

Fire-resistant safes are rated according to what type of material they’ll protect and for how long. Safes rated to protect paper documents shouldn’t get any hotter than
350 degrees on the inside. More sensitive materials like 35mm slides and DVDs require a safe that doesn’t exceed 125 degrees. Any of our Team Members can help you pick out the right safe for your needs.

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Emergency kits

If you find yourself in a situation where the power is out and you’re stuck in place, the right supplies are crucial. Plan to have water, food, first aid, some kind of light, and something to keep you warm as you weather the worst of it. From 33-piece first aid kits and emergency survival blankets to lanterns and headlights, Orchard offers a variety of emergency supplies to help you stay safe until help arrives.

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Portable power

It never hurts to have portable power for extended power outages or running critical electrical equipment. Make sure you have a generator (and gas - in an approved container) or coordinate with your neighbor to make sure one of you has one on hand to share. Never run a generator indoors, because it can emit dangerous carbon monoxide.

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October is officially National Fire Safety Month, so now is a great time to take a look around your home and see where you might need to better prepare yourself. Unfortunately, emergencies can strike at any time but a little advance planning can go a long way in the event of a crisis. Orchard has the right selection of products to keep your home, your family, and your pets safe.

Give Your Home a Fall Makeover

September will soon be in the rearview mirror and the holidays will be quickly approaching. Before you know it, you’ll be carving pumpkins and hosting friends and family. Now is the perfect time to spruce up your space before the hustle and bustle starts. Thankfully, Orchard carries a wide variety of high quality products to help you update your favorite spaces with little effort. And we’ve got five ways you can do it. Happy sprucing!

#1: Fresh paint

Color can instantly brighten or change the feeling of a room. Lighter shades can make a room look twice as big and look cleaner. But you don’t have to paint an entire room if that feels overwhelming. Pick an accent wall if you’re looking for a small change, or start smaller, like in the bathroom. 

Our Benjamin Moore line has specific paint that is tailored to the needs of your space. Aura® Bath and Spa has a matte finish that repels moisture and humidity and is great for the bathroom or even a laundry room. Regal® Select repels stains and cleans up easily without damaging walls. Ben® interior is formulated for an easy painting experience with its quick-fix drips and smooth touch-ups – even the most inexperienced painter will get beautiful results.

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#2: Update and upgrade your lighting

So simple and yet so powerful, lighting and lighting fixtures can instantly update a room. Whether it’s an old wall, vanity or ceiling light fixture, you can change the mood without breaking the bank.

Don’t forget to choose the right type of light for your spaces too. Refresh LED lights are ideal for playrooms, home offices and laundry rooms, while soft 60 watt Relax LED lights are ideal for bedrooms or guest rooms.

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#3: Wall fixtures

After you’ve made some changes to your lighting, don’t forget about your light cover switches and plugs. Even installing a dimmer in the dining room can make a dramatic difference. We carry wall plates that will help you mix and match or fit the hardware in the rest of the room – white, ivory, brushed nickel, stainless steel, bronze and even decorative.

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#4: Hardware

This may be one of the easiest changes you can make for the biggest impact. From cabinet knobs and pulls to updating a faucet or changing out your showerhead, you can quickly update the look in your kitchen, bathroom and even a dresser in your bedroom.

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#5: Decorate

Last, but certainly not least, decorating is the perfect way to give a room a fresh new look or add some personalization. From candles and candleholders, to indoor plants and holiday décor, you might be surprised how many things Orchard carries online and in store to help you add those finishing touches to your space.

Bonus tip!

Sometimes all a home needs is some simple cleaning and organization. From all-natural cleaners to hooks, totes and bins, we’ve got you covered. Store summer items away and get rid of clutter by giving it a home in one of our many storage solutions.

Plant in the Fall, Enjoy in the Spring

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The seasons may be changing, but that doesn’t mean you have to put your green thumb away. In fact, fall is one of the best times to plant bulbs that will sprout into beautiful flowers come springtime. The process can be tricky, so we’re sharing our tips for two ways you can tackle your planting like a pro.

Planting Bulbs in a Pot

First, choose the right pot. You will plant your bulbs close to the surface, so if your pot is tall, consider placing pinecones at the bottom or using another lightweight space-filler. Cover your choice of space-filler with landscape fabric, then fill the rest of the pot with soil up to a few inches from the rim.

Place your bulbs in the top layer of soil. Bulbs can be planted very close together, and actually should be to get the prettiest arrangement come springtime. Place them pointy side up to make it easier for them to grow.

Top your bulbs off with a layer of soil and water well. Finish off the pot with a layer of mulch for a little protection. Then, leave your pot outside to chill during the winter. The colder the bulbs get, the better the bloom!

Planting Bulbs in the Ground

Start by loosening the soil with a shovel and getting rid of any weeds in the area. Then use a rake to smooth, grade and level the spot where your bulbs will be planted. Tap the soil to remove air bubbles, but be sure not to completely compact the area.

If you are planting your bulbs directly in the ground, plant them about four or five inches deep. If you’ve created a raised bed, plant them about six inches deep. Place the bulbs in the ground pointy side up, and give them a good drink of water.

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Cover the bulbs with peat moss and water again. Finally, cover the area completely with topsoil. Make sure the surface is smooth, and you’re done! Get ready for some beautiful blooms in the spring.

Got questions? Need help getting started? Stop by your neighborhood Orchard and let us help with all your bulb planting needs.

Prep Your Yard for Fall in 6 Easy Steps

With the fall weather approaching, take advantage of the last warm days of summer to tidy up your backyard. You'll be able to relax better inside knowing your yard outside is ready for the cold weather. And Orchard is here to help with six tips to get your yard prepped for the fall.

1. Sharpen your chainsaws, pruners, and loppers

Keeping your blades sharp is important year-round, so why not use the changing seasons as a reminder? Orchard makes it simple– just bring your dull blades to our Workbench and we'll sharpen them for you right then and there.

2. Get to the gutters with a ladder

Don't wait until it's windy and rainy to clean those gutters! Carefully climb up there with a ladder and remove all the debris that has collected during the summer. Thinking ahead will help you avoid clogged gutters when the wet weather hits.

3. Break out your pruning, raking, and leaf-gathering equipment

The same goes for the debris that has gathered on the ground. Give your yard a once-over with a rake and prune away dead plant growth. Now is also the perfect time to make sure you have the appropriate leaf-gathering equipment before they start to fall.

4. Keep the lawn and hedges trimmed and tidy

Trim around the edges of your lawn and hedges to make sure you start the season ahead of the game. Cutting your lawn slightly shorter in autumn also helps prevent the grass from matting down under leaves.

5. Re-seal your deck to protect it from rain

You've enjoyed your deck all summer long, and now it's time to make sure it stands up to the harshest weather. Repair sun damage and general wear and tear from those long summer days by re-sealing your deck before fall begins.

6. Stow your outdoor cleanup equipment in a storage shed

Once you’ve tidied up your yard, you’ll need a place to store all of your equipment. A storage shed will provide organization and allow you to easily find your equipment again should you need it during the colder months.

Don’t wait until the cold weather hits to tidy up your outdoor space. Instead enjoy a hot drink and some peace of mind knowing your yard is ready for the changing seasons.

Pork Butt Burnt Ends & BBQ Brussels Sprouts Recipe

Don’t just serve the same old thing at your next tailgate. Change it up and get a little smoky with our favorite Pork Butt and BBQ Brussels Sprouts recipe.

Ingredients

3 ea 3-4 lbs boneless pork butt

2 lbs ​halved brussels sprouts

10 oz of your favorite pork rub

2 bottles of your favorite BBQ sauce​

Instructions

  1. ​Liberally coat the pork with ½ of the rub
  2. Smoke or roast the pork at 250°F, rotating every couple hours (4-5 hours)
  3. Season the brussels sprouts with ½ of the remaining rub and place in a foil pan in the refrigerator
  4. Once the pork has reached an internal temperature of 170°F, remove the pork and cut into 1 x 1 in cubes
  5. Place cubes in foil pan and toss in BBQ sauce and the remaining rub
  6. Increase smoker temperature to 375°F and place pork back on the grill (in the foil pan uncovered)
  7. Place the brussels sprouts on the grill in the foil pan, uncovered
  8. After 30 minutes, lightly sauce the brussels sprouts with the BBQ sauce
  9. Stir both the pork and the brussels sprouts every 10 minutes so they don’t burn
  10. Cook for another 30-45 minutes to tighten the sauce and crisp them
  11. Serve and enjoy!

Our mouths are watering just thinking about this juicy, hearty recipe. Try it out for yourself and post a picture using #OSHmoment. Yum!