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Leaf Blowers and Shredder Vacs from STIHL Are Perfect for Fall Clean-Up

Joseph Coupal - Monday, September 17, 2018

This video features six different STIHL Leaf Blower and Shredder Vac models.

No matter the task, STIHL has something for any job. Use the STIHL Blowers & Shredder Vacs Selector tool to help narrow your choices for STIHL Blowers & Shredder Vacs.

For more information, contact Monnick Supply in Marlborough and Framingham, MA.

Battery Powered Leaf Blower by STIHL Will Get the Job Done

Joseph Coupal - Monday, September 10, 2018

Discover what you can accomplish with a single battery charge and the STIHL Blower with the AK 20 battery. Turns out you can clear a sidewalk seven football fields long. What can you do on a Single Charge?

Learn more about the STIHL Battery Powered Power Tools.

Available at Monnick Supply.

Leaf Blower Repair and Maintenance

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, August 28, 2018
Monnick Supply, Marlborough, Framingham, MA

Fall is right around the corner. Pretty soon the yard, driveway, sidewalks and walkways will start to get their fair share of leaves and fall debris. A leaf blower is the perfect way to do your fall clean-up without using elbow grease. But most leaf blowers have a hard time starting up when you want them to. At Monnick Supply leaf blower repair is a specialty.

Back-pack leaf blowers and electric or gas-powered leaf blowers make life easier year round. Who wants to sweep or rake when a leaf blower can move leaves and other debris far more easily? But, when your leaf blower doesn’t start, the broom or rake can really take the enjoyment out of the gorgeous fall weather.

If you are having trouble staring your leaf blower bring it in for small engine repair and maintenance. Sometimes new gaskets, new air filters, fuel stabilizer, or new spark plugs are needed. No matter what the problem is, we will do our best to fix the leaf blower and make it run smoothly and reliably again. If you just want a new leaf blower, we sell them too-gas, electric or battery powered.

Monnick Supply in Marlborough and Framingham, MA specializes in sales and service of all power tools. Contact us for more information.

Prepare your Snowblower for Winter

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, August 21, 2018
Monnick Supply, Marlborough, Framingham, MA

The last thing anyone wants after the first major snowstorm of the year is to take the snowblower out of the garage and discover that it doesn’t work.

Having simple annual snow blower maintenance performed can save you from the aggravation of this scenario.

In general, these tasks should be done either at the end of the season in preparation for the following year or in the autumn before winter starts.

Much of the basic maintenance for a snowblower is the same as that needed by automobiles and includes the following:

  • Changing the oil (drain the old oil before adding new oil)
  • Installing a new spark plug
  • Replacing oil, fuel, and air filters
  • Inspecting the belts for wear and replacing them as necessary
  • Checking the tires for proper pressure and punctures
  • Filling the tank with fresh gasoline (siphon off old gasoline first)
  • Lubricating the snowblower drive and chassis can also improve efficiency and increase the life of the snowblower. Different snowblowers require different lubricating agents.

One part that can wear down over time is the rubber on the auger. If a finger fits between the rubber and the snowblower’s housing, replacement rubber is needed to optimize performance.

The scraper bar (the bar that scrapes the snow into the blower) can also experience some wear and should be carefully examined each year. A worn scraper bar can cause damage to the snowblower’s chassis and this generally requires professional repair or even replacement of the unit.

Even if the above maintenance is done at the end of a snow season, you may wish to purchase new gasoline at the beginning of each winter. In Massachusetts, with wide climate variations, gasoline is reformulated every few months for maximum effectiveness in for the current season. This means that gas bought in spring is not the same as gas that is bought in the fall, and the fall formula is better suited for winter use.

Adding methanol to the gasoline once a year can also be useful to prevent condensation in the gas tank and icing of the carburetor. This can be done at any time and is not technically part of an annual maintenance checklist, but adding the methanol when you fill the tank for the first time can ensure it’s done at least once per year.

For more information, or to make an appointment for snowblower maintenance, contact Monnick Supply.

How to Get Rid of Crabgrass in the Summer

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, August 07, 2018
Monnick Supply, Marlborough, Framingham, MA

Kill crab grass and be one step closer to having a perfect lawn.

Crabgrass is a tough opponent, but with a lawn spreader, a pump sprayer and a few turf products you can get rid of crabgrass in the spring and control it throughout the summer.

OK, your lawn has been growing for a couple of months and you notice light green blades thickening up your Kentucky Blue. Before you think your lawn is having an exceptional season, think again: It’s likely to be young crabgrass.

Pulling, at this early stage, is a surprisingly effective way to get rid of crabgrass. But if the weed has pushed up three or four rows of leaves, inspect it carefully before you snatch it. If you spot a slender, green seed head that is still closed and folded up against the leaves of the plant, go ahead and pull it, too.

However, after the seed head tines have spread out like a fork, leave it alone. Otherwise you’ll scatter scads of seeds right over that nice big hole you’ve just created by removing the mature weed. You might as well be trying to cultivate new crabgrass!

Come fall, seed bare and patchy areas. With good lawn care practices, you’ll soon crowd out those fallen crabgrass seeds.

Spraying

Lightly mist masses of immature crabgrass with a postemergence herbicide. Usually it’s too embedded to pull without yanking lots of your desirable grass with it.

Spray postemergence herbicide directly on crabgrass after it has sprouted. Pulling is equally effective, but if the roots are deeply embedded in your lawn, it may be tough to pull them out without pulling grass chunks too. It’s not worth spraying a postemergence product on crabgrass that has gone to seed. It takes about two weeks for the herbicide to work, which is about how long it takes the plant to finish its seeding process. If it has gone to seed, you’re better off waiting for next spring and applying a preemergence product then.

Post-emergence herbicides are most effective when the soil is moist and the plants are dry. Read the label for specific instructions. Typically you apply it with a hand pump sprayer. It’s best to apply it on a hot day when there’s low wind. If temperatures are too low, the product may be ineffective. Unless the crabgrass is young, you’ll probably have to reapply the product a few days later (according to the label) to kill the plant.

After postemergence application(s), keep an eye on the treated area. In extremely dry conditions, water two days after the application to aid absorption. If your grass near the treated area is turning brown, you probably were a little heavy handed.

Soak the damaged area with water to dilute the chemical and avoid further damage. Also be on the lookout for new crabgrass sprouts. These will require another herbicide treatment, or if there aren’t too many, simply pull them. Be sure to seed these areas in the fall.

Don’t waste your money on a postemergence herbicide in the fall as a route on how to kill crabgrass, when the temperatures are falling. The herbicide won’t be effective and the plant will soon die anyway.

Fight Crabgrass With a Healthy Lawn

The best way to stop crabgrass is to shade it out with a thick, healthy lawn. A thick lawn provides a dark canopy of grass blades over the seeds, so they won’t sprout. Follow these good grass-care practices.

Watering: A thorough watering once a week will encourage the grass’s root system to go deeper, making the whole lawn more hardy and heat tolerant. Avoid short, frequent waterings. These “sips” will promote a shallow, weaker root system in your lawn.

Mow: As a rule, grass should be mowed to a height of 2 to 3 in. Mowing it shorter than 2 in. will reduce the grass’s vitality and give weeds a chance to move in. Be sure to keep your lawn mower blades sharp so they won’t tear the grass. Leave grass clippings on the lawn as a natural fertilizer.

Reduce compaction: Weeds thrive in areas where compacted soil deprives the grass roots of the air and water circulation they need. If your yard is prone to compaction, rent and run an aerator over it every other year, especially if your soil contains a lot of clay.

Fertilize right: Avoid lawn fertilizer that say “quick green-up” on the label. These have excessive nitrogen ingredients that will actually weaken your lawn over time, making it more susceptible to weeds. Instead, select a fertilizer product with half of its nitrogen in a slow-release form. For a 1,000-sq.-ft. lawn, use less than 3 lbs. of nitrogen annually.

Reseed: Weed-damaged or thin areas should be seeded (sometimes called “overseeded”) in the fall, when the days are warm, the nights are cool and you have dew in the mornings.

Apply a double dose near hot spots

Some spots need special attention

Lawn near driveways, sidewalks and curbs or on south-facing banks absorbs a lot of heat during the summer months, which makes it more susceptible to crabgrass. Limit crabgrass growth in these areas by doing a targeted double treatment. After you’ve treated your entire lawn, go back and make another pass, as one option on how to kill crabgrass, about 6 to 8 ft. wide, along these areas (and make sure to sweep it off hard surfaces afterward). This will help keep crabgrass from taking hold along these heat absorbers.

Kill it all and start over!

How to Get Rid of Crabgrass

Expose bare soil

Kill off patches of lawn with nonselective herbicide in the fall if more than half the area is weeds. When it’s safe to replant (check the herbicide label), soak the patch with water and rake off dead grass and thatch to bare the soil.

While we all admire those who relentlessly defend their turf against crabgrass, there comes a time when the best strategy is to give up. That time is when your lawn only has 30 to 40 percent desirable grass left in a given area and the rest is lost to crabgrass and other weeds, and all options on how to kill crabgrass have been exhausted.

Begin by killing all the vegetation. On a low-wind day, apply a nonselective herbicide that is approved for lawn use, like Round-Up or Kleen-Up. Follow the label directions exactly. Depending on the product, weeds and grass will die and dry up in five to 14 days following application. Then renovation can proceed.

Thoroughly soak the area to give your new grass its best chance for a good start. Check your watering depth by pushing a spade into the ground and pulling it back to get a deep view of the soil. If the soil is moist to a depth of 6 to 8 in., you’re ready. For patchy bare areas and turf-free areas up to about 8 ft. square, use the spade technique for seeding. It’s effective, although it would be slow and tedious on areas that are much larger. Scuff up the dead vegetation with a rake and, using a spade, make 1/4-in.-deep furrows about 2 in. apart. Broadcast your grass seed, then flip a rake upside down and knock the seeds into the furrows. These furrows ensure that the seeds will make good contact with soil; they provide some moisture-retaining shelter as well. Then be sure to keep the seeds and soil moist. Continue to baby your new grass until after its first mowing. Do not apply crabgrass preventer to freshly planted areas.

Consider Chemical-Free Control Methods

Pre-emergent herbicides are the most effective and economical way to control crabgrass. But if you’d rather not use herbicides, you can try hand-weeding individual crabgrass plants in late spring before they get too big. They pull easily in soft ground after a rain. 

Learn more on how to eliminate weeds in your yard, contact Monnick Supply in Marlborough and Framingham, MA.

Source: familyhandyman.com

Dog Days of Summer Lawn Care

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, July 31, 2018
Monnick Supply, Marlborough, Framingham, MA

When it comes to mushrooms in the soil, there are billions of micro-organisms which are constantly working, eating and decomposing organic matter in the soil. Fungal fruiting structures release tiny spores that are easily carried in the air to new sites. These spores find a home on organic materials such as a piece of rotting wood and start to grow, some develop sufficient mushrooms that grow and appear in your lawn. These fungi can live in your soil for years and when conditions are right, they prosper, such as after periods of prolonged wet weather. Mushrooms are usually found in areas of poor water drainage.

New sod lawn installations and newly reseeded lawns require frequent irrigation and this sometimes promotes the growth of mushrooms. The mushrooms do not harm the lawn and will disappear as the volume of water is reduced.

Removing mushrooms from the top of your lawn will not kill the underground mycelia from which they are growing, so they may return. To manage mushrooms, aeration is necessary to break up the existing dense fungal mat of mycelia. Remove cores at least ¼" to 1 inch in diameter deeper than the fungal mat penetrates the soil. Determine the depth of this mat with a trowel or shovel. You may have to aerate these areas more than once each year to keep ahead of the regrowing mushrooms. This aeration breaks up the fungal mat but also improves water and air penetration into the soil creating a better lawn growing environment. If the fungal mat is more than 3" deep, a shovel or auger may be used to penetrate deeper into the ground. If the mushroom infestation is extreme and you want to completely eradicate mushrooms, you may need to remove the soil to a depth of 12" to 18". Refill the trench with fresh soil and reseed the area. Be careful not to infest any surrounding areas with the contaminated soil! You also may apply lawn fertilizer to help the grass to grow and thrive; this fertilization hastens the breakdown of organic matter.

Chinch Bugs

Chinch bugs will return with the dry weather and if the temperatures stays in the 90's. Damage frequently appears from early July through late August when the insects are actively feeding. Chinch bug nymphs and adults cause significant feeding damage by removing plant fluids and by injecting a toxin that causes the grass to yellow, then turn reddish brown, and eventually die.

Chinch bugs can be repelled by the use of endophyte enhanced-turf grasses such as the Black Beauty grass seed mixtures.

Apply Grub and Insect Control and water it in if you have Chinch bugs. If you have a history of chinch bugs, you may need to reapply in 25-28 days to prevent a second or even third generation of chinch bugs damaging the lawn later in the year.

For more information on summer lawn care, contact Monnick Supply in Marlborough and Framingham, MA.

Jonathan Green

Painting Interiors? Gray is Red Hot

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, July 24, 2018
Monnick Supply - Benjamin Moore's Perfect Gray Shades -  Marlborough, Framingham, MA

When it comes to painting rooms, gray is red-hot. Benjamin Moore carries over 150 shades of gray, of their top 50 colors for interiors, 30 are grays.

The trend toward gray started in Scandinavia, became big in the U.S. around six years ago, and is still on the rise.

Andrea Magno of Benjamin Moore says, "Gray is not going anywhere, and is still growing in popularity. It updates things instantly, and it's evolving over time. And we're seeing more gray cabinetry and more trim in gray now."

Just 15 years ago, if you told someone you were going to paint your room gray, they would groan and say, 'How depressing.' Before about 2010, it was all about warm Tuscan colors. Since then, it's really about cool modern grays, and not just for paint colors. Stone, marble, tile and wood have also gone a lot cooler.

But picking the correct shade of gray can be tricky.

It's crucial to pay attention to the undertones, and also how the light reacts to it. Gray is a very sneaky color.

Grays have undertones of blue, purple or green, and you'll want to make sure the undertones are compatible with surrounding tile, furnishings and fabrics, designers say.

For a real "smack-in-the-middle gray," Benjamin Moore suggests Repose Gray.

Repose Gray goes great with pink and creates a neutral background. Amazing Gray has a greener undertone, while Passive is cooler with more blue.

In addition to undertones, there's a big difference between cool and warm grays, with the former better suited to modern interiors and the latter often better for traditional homes with warmer-colored furnishings.

Some best advice is to select your three favorite grays, paint a poster board with each one, and look at them in your home over a weekend, tallying up which one you like best at various times of the day and night. If you plunge in before doing that, you may regret it.

You might love a picture you saw in a magazine, but it's important to remember that the very same shade of gray might look entirely different in your own home.

While undertones are hard to spot in a paint chip, they become more obvious on a larger surface like a poster board placed prominently in the room you are planning to paint.

Some of Benjamin Moore's more popular grays are Gray Owl, Balboa Mist, Coventry Gray, Stonington Gray, Revere Pewter and Thunder.

Revere Pewter has a gray cast "but it's warm and very livable". For cabinetry, it's Kendall Charcoal.

What about trims? Although grays are generally used with lighter grays, whites and off-whites, the latest trend is toward trim in the same or even a darker shade of gray.

Gray with gray trim is also becoming a trend.

White still feels safer to some people, but it's easy to overlook how harsh white can feel. Give gray a chance. If you're nervous starting out, choose a shade with blue undertones.

For help choosing interior paint color, see the paint specialists at Monnick Supply in Marlborough and Framingham.

Husqvarna Ride-On Mowers for Performance and Quality

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, July 17, 2018
Monnick Supply - Husqvarna YTH22V46 – 46” Lawn Tractor

Husqvarna's ride-on lawn mowers offer premium performance with quality results. Their compact size makes them easy to maneuver and require less space for storage.

Features such as fender-mounted cutting height adjustment, adjustable seat and an ergonomic steering wheel make these riding lawn mowers simple and comfortable to operate.

All tractors feature hydrostatic transmissions for smooth, variable forward and reverse speed. Air Induction mowing technology improves airflow within the deck, ensuring a clean, consistent cut every time. For added versatility, all models can be equipped with a range of towable accessories and mulch kit for effective lawn fertilization.

Features:

Briggs & Stratton Intek Single Cylinder -
Designed from the ground up as a best-in-class engine, combining power, performance, features and durability.

Hydrostatic transmission -
Easy speed and direction control with a fender mounted lever.

Cruise control -
Allows the tractor to maintain consistent speed, even in rough terrain.

Step-through -
Ensures comfortable and easy mounting and dismounting.

For more information on Husqvarna ride-on mowers or yard tractors, contact Monnick Supply in Marlborough and Framingham.

Useful Outdoor Tools Homeowners Should Have

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Monnick Supply, Marlborough, Framingham, MAWhen it comes to outdoor maintenance, homeowners have two options: do it yourself; or pay someone to do it for you. If you like to do it on you own, you’ll need to gather some tools to maintain your yard. Here’s a list of the most useful outdoor tools that homeowners should have.

A good pair of gloves. No matter what chore you’re doing, your hands will thank you for a good pair of gloves. A few tips: leather doesn’t breathe; try to find gloves that fit tight; gripping material is always appreciated.

Hedge trimmer. Buy this only if you have hedges. If you’re a new homeowner and assembling your toolkit, consider investing in a cordless model. Many brands have full lines of tools that have interchangeable batteries. Sort of a one-battery-to-rule-them-all situation.

Leaf rake. This isn’t only for homes with trees. Your rake will be handy to clean up grass clippings and for spring/fall lawn rakings.

Garden hose & sprinkler. For those dry summer days. A word of warning – your grass will die if you let it go without water for too long. You should absolutely conserve water, but won’t it take more water to establish a new lawn if yours goes kaput?

Garden rake. This is a great multipurpose tool to have. It’s good for spreading material, weeding, and tamping down soil. Pro tip: always lay it prongs down. Leaf blower/mulcher. A lot of these tools come as a combo. The leaf blower function is great for cleaning up debris, clearing leaves from large areas and cleaning up after mowing. The mulcher function significantly reduces the number of bags you’ll need for your leaves.

Pressure washer. An invaluable tool for cleaning your walkways, patio furniture, and maintaining a deck. You’ll need to choose between gas and electric models. Gas models will be FAR more powerful (be careful not to use too much power), but require more maintenance. Electric models should provide adequate power for light to medium duties.

Shovels. There are many types of shovel, so be sure to think about how you’ll use it the most. There are rounded digging shovels, scoop shovels, flat shovels (for edging or transferring) and more.

Loppers. The go-to tool for pruning trees and other shrubbery up to about an inch wide (some will cut thicker branches). If you need to cut thicker branches, consider purchasing a reciprocating saw as a safer alternative to a chainsaw.

Extension cord. This will be especially useful if you have electric yard tools. Be sure the cord and length you choose is heavy duty enough to handle the equipment you’re running. Check out this guide for details.

Wheelbarrow. Great for hauling piles of leaves, bulk mulch orders or landscaping stones. Plus, it makes everything that much easier on your back.

Lawn Mower. There are zero-turn, professional grade riding lawnmowers and your standard push mowers.

Weed whacker. Before you buy, you’ll have to ask yourself: gas or electric? Gas models will be more expensive and need more maintenance. But, you do get much more power and more portability. Electric will come at a much lower initial and ongoing cost, but you’ll be limited to lighter duty and the length of your extension cord. Don’t think about it too hard – there’s no right or wrong answer.

Snow blower or shovel. If you live in a climate that gets a lot of snow, this is something you can’t overlook. If you have a snow blower, be sure to get it serviced in September or October so you can be ready for the first big snow of the year.

For more information, contact Monnick Supply in Framingham and Marlborough, MA.

Plymouth Rock

10 Essential Tools for Homeowners

Joseph Coupal - Monday, July 02, 2018

Monnick Supply, Marlborough, Framingham, MAIf you’re a homeowner or even just a DIY renter, you’ll need to be prepared to roll up your sleeves to tackle projects around the house.

Get ready by assembling a toolbox filled with the most essential tools to get simple jobs done. Here are the most frequently recommended beginner tools from homeowners. Keep in mind, this isn’t a comprehensive list and make sure to always put safety first.

Pliers/Needle Nose Pliers

Get a grip with a good pair of pliers. If you need bend wire, pull carpet staples or tightly grasp anything else, this will be your go-to tool. If you plan to use them for long periods, look for some with rubber-coated handles.

Tape Measure

Measure twice, drill/cut/nail once. If you’re fractionally challenged, look for models that have fractions printed right on the tape.

Level

Hang pictures and shelves straight as an arrow with this tool. You’ll have a couple of options: the classic bubble level or a laser level. Bubble levels will likely be the less expensive option, but laser levels will give you far greater range.

Hammer

Can you image a toolbox without a hammer? Hanging pictures, taking doors off their hinges, pounding in finishing nails and securing paint can lids are just a few of the many, many tasks for which you’ll use your hammer. You’ll see several different types of hammers at the hardware store; go with a classic claw hammer.

Screw Driver Set

Just like your hammer, a screw driver set is absolutely essential. Look for a set that includes both flathead and Phillips head drivers.

Adjustable Wrench

A versatile tool that’s helpful if you’re trying to loosen a garden hose from the spigot or shut off utilities, like gas.

Stud Finder

If you’re hanging a heavy object on a wall, you’ll need to secure it to something. Unless you still have those X-ray specs from your childhood, a stud finder is your best option. You’ll typically be using this along with your hammer and level.

Putty Knife

A must if you’re filling old picture holes and wall dings with spackle. It’s also an excellent tool for removing wallpaper.

Drill

Pick up either a cordless or corded one. If you don’t plan on using your drill often, go for a corded model and a nice extension cord.

Allen Wrench Set

If you’ve ever put together (Swedish) furniture, you’re familiar with these tools, which are also called Allen keys or hex keys. Look for a set that has a few various sizes that are bound together like a pocket knife so you don’t lose them.

That’s our list of basic tools. But, let’s hear from you: what other basic tools to you find most useful around the house? Let us know in the comments.

Looking for tools for your home? Contact Monnick Supply in Framingham and Marlborough, MA.

Plymouth Rock


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Call (508) 318-4788


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Monnick Supply $$
135 Maple St.
Marlborough MA 01752
United States
(508) 318-4788
Mon-Fri 7am - 6pm
Sat 7am - 5:30pm
Sun 12pm - 4pm
Monnick Supply $$
759 Waverly St.
Framingham MA 01702
United States
(508) 386-9876
Mon-Fri 7am - 6pm
Sat 8am - 5:30pm
Sun 10am - 4pm