Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Snow Shoveling Tips for Your Driveway

Heavy snow is an annual occurrence in Nassau County, and one that will occur soon. Many people have the luxury of owning a snow blower or using a snow removal service like Stasi Snow, but for some life isn't so easy. If you are one of the brave warriors who shovels their driveway, we feel for you. That is why we are giving you these tips to shovel your driveway as quickly, easily, and safely as possible.

Safety First
Shoveling snow may seem like no more than a chore, but it is a physical activity (and can be a quite rigorous one depending on the quantity and weight of the snow) and should be treated as such. Proper precautions must be taken, such as stretching before starting and making sure to keep hydrated if it will be a long job. You will want to dress warm, but be careful not to overdress – you will quickly heat up once you start working.

Shovel in a Spider Web Fashion
The Wall Street Journal recommends shoveling your driveway in the pattern of a spider web for optimal efficiency. To do this, start in the center of the driveway, and shovel out to one corner. Continue walking back to the center and shoveling to the other three corners so there is a big “X” in your driveway. Then shovel the remaining spots, outlining your previous paths, as shown in the picture below. Doing this not only increases efficiency, it allows you to shovel shorter and shorter distances as your body tires.

Don't Shovel the Same Snow Twice
This is the cardinal rule of shoveling snow. If you choose not to use the shoveling method pictured above, pick a routine which prevents you from moving the same snow twice. Dump the first shovelfuls further away from you, and progressively drop them closer and closer as you progress through the driveway.

Save The Apron for Last
This goes hand-in-hand with the last tip, but save shoveling the apron of your driveway for last. The apron is the spot where your driveway meets the street. The reason you will want to save the apron for last is because chances are good that a plow will come by while you are shoveling and push snow from the street on to it. Not touching this spot until the end will ensure that you do not have to shovel a big pile of snow twice.

Stasi Brothers is a paving contractor and snow management serviced located in Nassau County, New York. We have been in business for a proud 52 years and hold an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau. For a full list of our services, visit our website or call 516-997-PAVE. You can also connect with us on social media by following us on Twitter or liking our page on Facebook.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Halloween Decoration Ideas for Your Stairs and Sidewalk

Halloween is next week, and people are beginning to turn their homes into haunted houses for the hundreds of trick-or-treaters who will visit on October 31st. If you are having trouble thinking of ways to spook the neighborhood kids, Stasi Brothers has you covered. We are normally known for paving walkways and staircases, but in the spirit of Halloween, we can help you decorate them too.

Photo courtesy of Martha Stewart
Turn your porch into a bat cave
If you are looking for ways to make your doorstep a little more spooky, consider turning it into a bat cave. Those who are brave enough to ring your doorbell will be sure to remember the one-of-a-kind Halloween d├ęcor. Martha Stewart provides step-by-step instructions using only construction paper, a pair of scissors, and painter's tape. 

Sidewalk cemetery
Make trick-or-treaters think twice before walking up to your house by turning your walkway into a graveyard. Fake tombstones can be purchased for cheap at just about any store that sells Halloween decorations. Line your sidewalk with these decorative grave markers to give your house an instant spook factor.

A staircase full of jack-o-lanterns
Your front stairs can be as welcoming or terrifying as you'd like with a variety of jack-o-lanterns. Simply grab a handful of pumpkins and start carving them. Use bat, witch, and monster designs to add a menacing look, or carve silly faces and the words “trick or treat!” into the pumpkins to give off a more approachable vibe.

Spider Web Wreath
Door wreaths are a common decoration on many homes, regardless of the season. Put a spooky spin on this tradition with a wreath designed to look like a spider web. Give your visitors goosebumps and make their skin crawl as they lay eyes on dozens of fake spiders sitting on your door. These can be purchased at Halloween stores or you can make them yourself.

Stasi Brothers has been Nassau County's number one paving contractor for 52 proud years. We offer a variety of residential and commercial services and have received an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau. You can visit our website for a list of our services or like us on Facebook for company news, promotions, and tips.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Prepare Your Driveway for Winter in 3 Easy Steps

Winter is right around the corner, is your driveway prepared? The harsh winter weather not only takes its toll on us, our homes, and our cars – but our driveways as well. If you do not properly prepare your driveway for the winter, it might not look the same come spring. Follow these three steps from Stasi Brothers to make sure your driveway is as ready as you are.

Repair All Cracks and Potholes
Use this time of the year to fill all of the cracks and holes in your driveway before it is underneath a blanket of snow. If you don't repair the damages before the winter season, you are leaving them susceptible to getting worse. During the winter time, water can start to puddle in these cracks due to rain, sleet, slush, and melted snow. When the temperature dips below 32°F, this water freezes and expands, forcing the cracks to expand with it. If your driveway is in relatively good shape, you can do these repairs yourself in only an hour or two. We have a guide for this here. If there are numerous large cracks and deep potholes in your driveway, you will have to get it professionally repaired. If you live in Nassau County, Stasi Brothers can provide these services.

Apply Sealcoat
After your driveway is patched and level, the next step is to apply a layer of sealcoat. This can be done by the homeowner or a professional contractor, such as Stasi Brothers. Applying sealcoat to your driveway adds an extra layer of protection against the harsh winter weather. If correctly applied, it will also fill in minor imperfections and provide a beautiful, slip-resistant finish that makes your driveway look new. Regularly maintaining your driveway by applying sealcoat every couple of years can also more than triple the life of your driveway.

Stock Up Now
Rather than waiting until the day before the first big storm, take a trip to the hardware store now and get any supplies you may need for the winter. You will save yourself the headache of dealing with crowds of people, long lines, and out-of-stock products. If you have a snow blower, start it up to make sure that it is running properly. If you prefer to clear your driveway the old fashioned way, make sure you have at least two shovels in case there is too much snow for a one-man job. Grab a couple of containers of play sand or kitty litter to add traction when your driveways become slippery. Avoid salt and chemical deicers – not only are they bad for the environment, they can also cause serious damage to your driveway.

If you need your driveway prepared for winter, call Stasi Brothers at 516-997-PAVE. When the snow does hit, we also offer snow removal services. Visit our website for more information, and make sure to like us on Facebook for more tips as winter approaches.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

How to Patch Potholes in Your Driveway

Winter is almost here, and that means a lot of snow, ice, and slush is on the way. Not only does this mean extra layers for you, but it means extra damage for roads, sidewalks, and your asphalt driveway. If you currently have any cracks or potholes in your driveway, expect them to get worse this winter due to the weather conditions. One way to prevent this is by patching your driveway before the first snowfall. This is a quick job that can be done in less than an hour and will save you time and money down the road. Stasi Brothers has provided you with a quick, concise guide on patching your asphalt driveway in seven easy steps.

1. Remove any objects and debris from the hole. It is not necessary to remove every particle, but large objects should be removed either by hand or with a shovel.

2. Pick up some cold asphalt patch at a local hardware store. Most places sell this in 50 lb bags or 5 gallon buckets. How much patch you need is dependent on the size of the pothole, but anything smaller than a one foot diameter up to four inches deep should be fixed with one 50 lb bag.

3. Pour the asphalt patch into the pothole. If you cannot lift the bag or the bucket, you can shovel it in. Stop when you have poured about two inches of the material into the hole.

4. Compress the asphalt patch. This is the key to a good fix. You can compress this with a hand tamp or a shovel, but whatever you use, make sure to press it down tight.

5. Repeat this process of pouring and compressing until the hole is filled and the patching material is flush with the rest of your driveway.

6. Cover the patch with a piece of cardboard or plywood for 48-72 hours. This isn't necessary, however it will produce better results.

7. Remove the cover and enjoy your patched up asphalt driveway!

Remember: only use this method if you have one or two small potholes. If your driveway is covered in cracks in holes, it may be time to repave it. If you live in Nassau County, call Stasi Brothers at 516-997-PAVE. You can also like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for more asphalt tips.