Saturday 15 November 2014

Our New Kitchen Door

Our kitchen door could not close properly for more than a year. A few weeks ago, it finally came off its hinge at the bottom when Sera pushed it. Ardon managed to push it to lean against the wall and luckily no one was hurt. By pushing the kitchen door to the side, it obstructed the door of the storeroom and made it quite difficult to take things out of the storeroom. The kitchen door was a wooden bifold door which was quite heavy and already more than 13 years old. So it was about time to get a new one rather than just repair it. 

Old kitchen door 
Hence we began our search for a new door. I was attracted to the eco series from Ministry of Door and contacted them for some information. One of the staff then came to take measurements first and gave me some information about what types of door we could install at the kitchen entrance. Actually I would prefer a sliding door but, due to some design constraints, a sliding door was not feasible. If we really wanted one, we have to install the frame in the living room and it might not look good. The person who took measurements told me I could consider either a bifold door or a swing slide door. He told me the swing slide door that their company used was not from PD door. We can slide the door to any point up to the midpoint (not necessarily at the midpoint) and swing it open, unlike the PD door where we have to slide it to its midpoint before we could swing it open. So we fixed an appointment with Rachael at the  Ministry of Door to visit their showroom (by appointment only) so that we could test the mechanism of the bifold door and the swing slide door to make a better decision.

Rachael explained to us that the swing slide door could actually swing open 180 degrees (same as PD door). However, it does not have the mechanism on top of the frame that holds the two panels of the door together at midpoint that the PD door has (before pushing the door to swing out). I have read some online comments/reviews that the PD door often got stuck. We have also tried the PD door before in some relatives' home and realized that it was not so easy to slide it to the correct/fixed middle position to swing it open. We were glad to have found a better alternative (in our view, as some people may prefer it to slide to the middle fixed position before swinging the door open as it is more stable). We preferred the swing slide door to be able to swing open more easily so that our children will also find it easy to open and close the door. Since we were going to install the door in such a way that it would be swinging towards the kitchen, it did not matter even if we could not close it nicely in the middle position. I preferred something different since we were getting a new door anyway and I was reluctant to use a bifold door again. A normal swing door would require more space to swing open as the kitchen door would be quite wide. A swing slide door would be the best option.

Satisfied with the slide and swing mechanism of the door, we finally opted for it. The brand was SK brand. I had previously tried to look online for reviews on SK swing slide door but could not find anything so I thought it might be a good idea to share with you. 
The designs were more limited (eco series not used for this swing slide door) when compared with the bifold doors from Ministry of Door but we thought that the mechanism was more important than the designs. We could always decorate the door later if we wanted to. We could mix and match the colours of the acrylic panels used for the door. We chose frosted glass (it was actually made of acrylic) with cream acrylic in the middle. The frame was made of aluminium.

After paying the deposit, the door was ready to be installed about one week later. We had the door installed with the door swinging towards the kitchen and to the right looking from living room. 

View of SK swing slide door from living room

View of door swung open without sliding fully to the middle

View of door swung open with door fully slid to the middle
Top of door frame

Two hinges on the right side of frame

Side view of door
You can see from the last picture above that the door was quite slim. We couldn't swing it open 180 degrees due to space constraints. The sliding feature would be useful to open the door halfway when we wanted to open the storeroom door to get something. We do not need to close the door fully so anyone can still go into the kitchen without too much problem. 

Here is a video of Sera demonstrating how she opened and closed the swing slide door. I told her to open and close it gently and she was able to do so with ease.

Sunday 9 November 2014

Hyundai Clothes Dryer HYCD-8070

Giant was having a promotion on a Hyundai Clothes Dryer model HYCD-8070 about two weeks ago. It was sold at $69 instead of the usual $100+ (don't remember exact amount).

Ardon and I had been contemplating to buy this type of clothes dryer ever since we saw one a few years ago. However, we put off the idea as they usually cost more than $100. Here was a good deal to buy a clothes dryer at $69. Furthermore, with the rainy season coming soon, this would come in handy.

There is a knob at the bottom of the Hyundai Clothes Dryer where we can set the timer for the clothes dryer to work at intervals of 30 minutes. I usually set it to 120 minutes (2 hours).

When I turn the knob clockwise to the timer side, a small red light will light up beside the "on" label.

When the clothes dryer is in operation, it will be inflated with hot air as shown in the picture below.

When I first used it, I put about 12 pieces of clothing and set the timer to 120 minutes. Once the time was up, the children's dresses and Ardon's long sleeved shirts were already dry but the sleeves of the adult cotton T-shirts were still wet.

After trying a few times, it seemed that it was better to put about 7 to 8 pieces of clothing that usually dry fast on normal sunny days (drying indoors, not directly under the sun). All of them would be dry after 2 hours in the clothes dryer. Children's clothes, adult sized sleeveless T-shirts and handkerchiefs will be dried in 2 hours in the clothes dryer. 

This clothes dryer will not damage our clothes since it does not tumble dry. It cannot dry a lot of clothes at one time but it is still useful to speed up the drying process on rainy days. Otherwise, we would have to use a lot of space to hang all the wet laundry.

Just hope that it can last...

Note: I have never used a tumble dryer before but I heard that clothes will tend to shrink a bit each time they are dried in the tumble dryer.