Before you take your next vacation, road trip or getaway, do a little research and download a few travel apps that will help you along the way. We’ve listed some handy apps below, but there many more out there related to maps, travel time, things to do in specific cities, gas prices, places to shop and eat, flight arrival times, hotels, and countless more. Below are a few that we like to use:
City Maps 2Go
MapQuest Gas Prices
My Max Speed
TripGo Real Time Trip Planner
While the stock plans offered by The Garage Plan Shop can be built almost anywhere, we often hear from Canadian customers looking for plans drawn by Canadian designers. We are pleased to offer two collections of detached garage plans drawn by designers in Canada. Additionally, we also offer a collection of garage apartment plans drawn by a Canadian designer. Garage apartment plans are thoughtfully designed to offer distinct parking and living areas. Typically, they are two-story structures designed with the garage on the main level and living quarters above. Just like garage apartment plans drawn by US designers, those drawn by our Canadian designer are designed to meet national building codes. Keep in mind it may be necessary to take the plans to a local designer to have any changes made or notes added to the plans in order to meet specific provincial codes before construction begins. Additionally, if your building department requires engineering, it will be necessary to hire a local engineer to review the plans and engineer them to meet local building codes and requirements. The engineer must be registered/licensed in the province where you plan to build. Below is a link to our garage apartment plans drawn by a Canadian designer:
Canadian Garage Apartment Plans
For more designs, please browse our entire garage apartment plan collection which includes those drawn by US designers as well.
It is fairly common for our customers ask if we offer Canadian garage plans. The Garage Plan Shop is pleased to respond, “YES, we do!” We offer two extensive garage plan collections from two of Canada’s top-notch designers. These collections include 1-car, 2-car and 3-car garages, garage workshops, garages with boat storage, garage loft plans, and RV garage plans just to name a few. However, just like the garage floor plans drawn by our US designers, those drawn by our Canadian designers are designed to meet national building codes. We do not guarantee these plans will meet all provincial building codes and they are not engineered. It may be necessary for you or your builder to hire a local design professional to review the plans and add any notes or make any necessary changes to meet specific provincial codes. Likewise, if you are required to have your garage plans engineered in order to get building permits, it will be up to you or your builder to hire a local engineer to review the plans and seal or stamp them.
We’ve provided the links to our Canadian garage plan collections below. Take some time to browse through them to find the one that satisfies your needs.
Canadian garage plan collection A
Canadian garage plan collection B
When it comes to choosing the best lighting for your garage or workshop, there are many options to consider, however it all comes down to how you plan to use your garage or shop and your personal preferences. Whether you’re building a new garage or just upgrading the one you have, your choice of lighting will influence how usable your garage or shop will be and how much time you’ll spend there. These three easy steps will help you choose the appropriate garage or workshop lighting for your needs:
- Determine how you plan to use your garage or shop. Will it only be used for parking? Do you plan to work on cars? Will you use the garage for storage space? Hobbies? A workshop?
- Select general purpose lighting to illuminate all sections of the garage or workshop including the corners. Fluorescent light fixtures are a popular choice as they are relatively common, they provide more than adequate general lighting and they can be equally spaced across the span of your garage for the best illumination. If you have questions, about fluorescent lighting, check with your lighting professional and your electrician.
- Consider the layout of your garage or workshop and create individual work or storage spaces within it. Select task lighting for each designated space or purpose. If you plan to have a workbench, choose track lighting or a fixture that fits neatly under an overhead cabinet to illuminate your workbench. Consider positioning an overhead light above a craft or hobby table. Use incandescent lighting inside storage closets and other small spaces. Finally, purchase a trouble or drop light to illuminate dark and obscure spaces, such as under the hood of a car. A drop light is portable and can be use for all kinds of purposes within your garage or workshop.
After you’ve selected the lighting fixtures you need, hire a licensed electrician to install them according to local building and electrical codes.
What better way to ring in the New Year than to make a resolution to green your transportation in 2013. There are all kinds of ways to make transportation earth-friendly this year. We’ve listed some of them here for you:
- Consider working from home. Telecommuting is an easy way to reduce work related travel. It will save you and your company money and time while cutting greenhouse emissions.
- Buy an eco-friendly car such as the Nissan Leaf or Chevrolet Volt. Hybrid and all-electric cars are great options that are environmentally friendly.
- Car pool whenever possible. Whether you need a ride to work or the kids need a ride to their soccer games, car pooling with co-workers, other parents, etc., saves everyone money and wear and tear on cars while reducing emissions.
- Recycle your oil and use recycled engine oil. Used oil doesn’t wear out, it just gets dirty. It can be cleansed of contaminants and recycled in a continuous cycle. New engine oil made from recycled oil meets industry lubrication standards. According to the American Petroleum Institute, re-refined oil is of as high a quality as a virgin oil product.
- Drive responsibly. Irresponsible and erratic driving burns gas at a phenomenal rate. Poor driving practices can dramatically lower your gas mileage. Some aggressive driving behaviors include speeding, rapid acceleration, and heavy breaking. All of these will lower your fuel efficiency.
- Unload your car. Many of us tend to turn our cars into storage lockers. Every pound your car carries goes against your fuel economy. Get in the habit of removing non-essential items from your car. Every little bit helps.
- Arrange your errands in order to save gas, time and money.
- Bike to work and other nearby activities when weather permits.
- Turn off the hose when washing the car to save water. Only turn it on when it is time to rinse.
- Keep your tires properly inflated for the best performance and fuel economy.
For other ideas about living green, please browse our Energy Efficiency and Green Building blogs.