What’s Next In Outdoor Living? Top Trends for 2020

(BPT) – The appeal of all things al fresco has never been higher with homeowners across the country investing more time and money than ever before into their outdoor spaces. Based on insights from decking contractors, retailers and home design experts, industry leader Trex Company has compiled its annual outdoor living forecast, predicting the top design trends for 2020 and beyond.

“It’s always fascinating to compare the trends reported by our customers with those projected by the industry at large,” said Leslie Adkins, vice president of marketing for Trex. “This year, we also engaged celebrity designer Alison Victoria to take our forecast to a whole new level.”

According to the latest report, the following five top trends will influence outdoor living in the new decade:

Mixed materials

2020 is the year to mix it up. Add visual interest to an outdoor space by juxtaposing materials such as concrete and composite, wicker and aluminum, copper and stone. Integrate nature-inspired materials that maintain cohesion with the natural surroundings, and infuse color and pattern with pillows, cushions, furnishings and decorative accents.

Sizzling kitchens

As the foodie phenomenon continues to thrive, outdoor kitchens will continue to evolve. Picture fully appointed culinary centers complete with specialty appliances such as smokers, pizza ovens and integrated refrigerated storage – all housed in stylish all-weather cabinetry. Capturing this trend is the new Trex Outdoor Kitchens collection, featuring stainless steel cabinetry solutions in color and style options that allow homeowners to create functional spaces that rival interior spaces.

“A good kitchen is essential – whether indoors or out,” emphasized Victoria, host of HGTV’s “Windy City Rehab” and DIY’s “Kitchen Crashers.” “A well-designed and well-appointed kitchen becomes the heart of any space. It’s where people gather. It’s where memories are made. So, make it memorable!”

Industrial inspiration

There is a growing shift toward sleek, contemporary designs and materials for interior and exterior spaces as homeowners are increasingly finding inspiration in commercial settings like hotels and restaurants. Outdoors, this trend is manifesting in more industrial aluminum railing styles with sleek profiles and contemporary rod, mesh or glass inserts designed to optimize sightlines and deliver a modern flair.

Fire and water

“Fire and water are all the rage right now for outdoor spaces,” Victoria noted. “These elements not only take a space to the next level; they connect it to the natural surroundings. Even in an urban setting, these elements add a sense of tranquility that can make you feel like you’re a million miles away.”

Fire pots, such as those in the new Trex Outdoor Fire & Water collection, can be positioned almost anywhere to create a cozy gathering spot – or combined in a series to provide an ambient boundary for larger outdoor areas. For even greater visual impact, a fire table can serve as a focal point and elevate the luxury and comfort of an outdoor space. Likewise, the soothing sound of trickling water from integrated spillways, bowls or other features can instantly conjure calm and set a relaxed tone and atmosphere.

Bonus space

If you have a raised deck, there is undoubtedly some open space underneath. While, historically, this space has been used for storage, the design trend for 2020 is to turn it into bonus living space by installing a deck drainage system. Designed to divert water away from a deck, systems like RainEscape create a dry space that can be outfitted with everything from furniture and accessories to lighting fixtures, ceiling fans and entertainment components.

For more outdoor living ideas and inspiration, visit Trex.com.

Hottest Kitchen Trends From KBIS 2020

(BPT) – Today’s home chefs want – and expect – more from their kitchens than ever before. To optimize their culinary and entertaining skills, they seek exciting new ways to push the boundaries of what they can do at home. These forward-thinking cooks also aim to prepare meals efficiently, using the best high-tech advances available. In fact, a new study conducted by The Research Institute for Cooking & Kitchen Intelligence reveals that kitchen designers have seen increased demand for dual-fuel appliances in the past year and that convection and induction cooking are on the rise.

Kitchen innovations on display at North America’s premier kitchen design show, the 2020 Kitchen & Bath Industry Show, offer a window on the latest technology to help home chefs achieve their culinary dreams.

As best-selling cookbook author, educator and host of the “True to Food” film series, Mark Bittman observes, “The more people cook, the more interested people become in their kitchens. When you’re interested in your kitchen, you’re exploring: What can make this easier? What can make this more fun? What can make me a better cook? Appliances are certainly a part of that.”

Top appliance makers are bringing elements of professional-quality kitchens into the home, with some now catering to a new generation of forward-thinking home chefs known as “Technicureans.”

Sous vide cooking

Once limited to professional chefs, sous-vide is a cooking technique that utilizes precise temperature control to deliver consistent, restaurant-quality results. Sous-vide has been the go-to method in some of the world’s best restaurants for years, and for good reason: it brings food to the precise temperature chefs look for and delivers perfect doneness, edge-to-edge, every time for a variety of foods like steak, chicken, fish and more.

Luxury kitchen appliance brands are bringing sous-vide to home chefs. For example, Signature Kitchen Suite offers the industry’s first pro-ranges with built-in sous-vide right on your cooktop – in addition to induction and gas – culinary game-changers for today’s foodies. With these 48- and 36-inch dual-fuel pro ranges and even new rangetops with built-in sous-vide, more individuals can bring restaurant-quality results to their home kitchens.

Cutting-edge food storage options

The best chefs start with the freshest ingredients. That’s where the importance of food storage comes in.

Don’t want cool air escaping while finding what you want in the fridge? With InstaView technology from LG, knock twice on the glass panel to see inside before opening.

You can also store frequently used items in an adjustable bin; the Door-in-Door design lets you keep cold air in while quickly selecting them.

Mixology mastered

Whether you love crafting cocktails or just want unique ice options, the InstaView Refrigerator with Craft Ice is the first to create automatically large, slow-melting spherical ice, without the hassle of molds. At two inches in diameter, Craft Ice enables you to keep your drink at the perfect temperature without watering it down. You can also choose cubed or crushed ice.

Its new water dispensers also accommodate just about any size glass or bottle. Use the Measured Fill feature to dispense exact amounts of filtered water (4, 8, 16 or 32 ounces).

Smart technology

A top trend seen in many KBIS 2020 kitchen appliances, including dishwashers, refrigerators and ovens, is more precision in terms of automation, plus connectivity to consumers.

Top appliances today use the latest technology to calculate the exact amounts needed for each task, whether that means specific detergent amounts, humidity or temperature controls.

Thanks to Wi-Fi connectivity, many manufacturers make it possible for you to control and monitor your smart appliances from anywhere, using your virtual assistant or phone.

Sink innovations

Kitchen designers also showcased innovations to help home cooks clean up and access water quickly and easily. The Best of KBIS 2020 includes everything from the latest in pull-out or pull-down faucets, faucets that respond to voice commands, advanced water filtration systems and sinks that double as work stations.

Outdoor cooking options

Another trend celebrated at KBIS 2020 is the elevation of the outdoor grill. Certainly not your father’s grill, the latest models for outdoor cooking are not only elegant and sturdy in construction, but also allow for cooking at different levels, with the ability to vary the distance between the food and the heat source.

To learn more about 2020 kitchen innovations, visit LG.com and SignatureKitchenSuite.com.

Tips To Stay Warm and Safe From Carbon Monoxide

(BPT) – As temperatures drop and we crank up the heat or turn to alternative power sources, the risk for carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning significantly increases. Often dubbed “the silent killer,” CO is an invisible and odorless gas that is impossible to detect without a CO alarm.

Recent surveys revealed more than 40% of American homes do not have CO alarms, and nearly two-thirds of homes do not comply with established CO alarm recommendations. According to the National Fire Protection Association, CO alarms should be installed on each level of the home, including the basement, and near every sleeping area.

Everyone is at risk for CO poisoning, so it’s vital to be prepared and aware! As one of America’s favorite TV first responders, actor Taylor Kinney knows the importance of practicing and maintaining proper home safety precautions, which is why he is partnering with First Alert to share important messages about home safety.

“You never think your home will be the one to catch fire, but then it happened to me,” said Kinney. “It’s the same with carbon monoxide, which is why educating the public about CO is so important. The danger CO can cause in your own home is real, and the only way people can protect themselves is with an alarm.”

Here are tips on how to avoid this preventable risk:

Hidden threat

Carbon monoxide can be produced from any fuel-burning device, such as furnaces, boilers, stoves and even cars. It is important to have appliances inspected annually and never use a generator indoors or anywhere CO can collect. Also, be mindful of the garage. Never leave a car running in a garage, even if the door is open, as fumes can leak into the home.

Know the symptoms

CO poisoning is notoriously difficult to diagnose. Because you can’t see or smell carbon monoxide, you might not recognize the symptoms of CO poisoning, as they can be confused with those of the common cold or flu, such as nausea, headaches, dizziness and weakness.

Take action

Equipping your home with working CO alarms is the only way to detect this poisonous gas. For premium protection against both fire and CO, install combination alarms for 2-in-1 protection, such as the First Alert 10-Year Battery Smoke & Carbon Monoxide Alarm, which eliminates battery replacements for a decade. Once installed, maintenance is key. Remember to test your alarms regularly and replace alarms at least every 10 years. If CO symptoms appear, or if an alarm sounds, move to fresh air immediately and then call 911.

Establish a family emergency plan

Knowing – and practicing – what to do in the event of an emergency is crucial. Develop a plan in case of a fire or CO incident. This includes designating an outside meeting place a safe distance from the home and, once safely outside, calling 911. If CO symptoms appear, or if an alarm sounds, get everyone outside to fresh air immediately. Once out, stay out until the home is cleared and safe to re-enter.

For more information, visit www.firstalert.com.

Bringing the Indoors Out: 2020 Outdoor Living Trends

(BPT) – 2020 outdoor living trends are all about enjoying your backyard alfresco – but with the comfort and ease you expect from your indoor spaces. Today’s outdoor spaces are transforming into an extension of the home. The current outdoor design also takes into account the look and feel of your entire home, including the interior and exterior, building materials and surroundings.

Connecting with nature: Biophilic design

Biophilic design is achieved when natural elements are incorporated into the space, helping people feel connected to the natural environment. It creates a calm, tranquil space and reduces stress. Biophilia makes sense for indoor urban environments needing to bring the outdoors in, but how does it work when you’re already outside?

Biophilic design for outdoor spaces means integrating natural elements with constructed elements to create a harmonious space. A plant wall or raised garden bed can integrate greenery and pops of color with the built elements of your outdoor space. It also means using natural materials, like wood and stone, to complement the surrounding environment.

Create greener, more sustainable spaces to celebrate the environment, which can help encourage pollinators, grow healthy food and forge a cohesive outdoor space. You can also use materials such as Belgard’s permeable pavers, which allow water to drain through the surface, replenishing the soil and aquifers beneath your path, walkway or driveway.

More than just a grill

Today’s homeowners want much more than a grill in the backyard. With aspirations to cook and entertain guests outdoors with everything the best outdoor kitchen can offer, the possibilities are endless – from grills to cooktops and ovens or even a wine cooler and an outdoor bar.

Homeowners also have many options when it comes to the design and price point of their outdoor kitchen. Some may lean toward a grill island, adding prep and storage space to their grilling station, while others might create a full-on outdoor kitchen with a grill, smoker, refrigerator, sink, seating area and more.

Either way, homeowners can get a feel for exactly what their space will look like before breaking ground through Belgard’s design resources. The Belgard Design Studio takes a simple sketch, some dimensions and a couple of photos and turns it, using design software, into 3D animations and virtual reality experiences to give homeowners a sense of the finished product in their backyard.

Sleek, modern design

While it may seem contrary to the more organic approach of biophilic design, the contemporary trend toward sleek, modular furniture can enhance your outdoor space.

Modular, sectional pieces with clean lines and streamlined design can be arranged and re-arranged to accommodate any natural elements you want to incorporate in your space, or to handle different numbers of guests when entertaining.

The minimalist approach to furnishings also allows the natural elements around you to take center stage.

Multifunctional spaces

Whether your home is in an urban area with limited green space, or you want to optimize your outdoor living, get creative:

  • Add vertical planters
  • Hang hammocks for lounging
  • Create built-in seating
  • Build raised garden beds

Here’s where some of that modular seating can come in handy, too. Some urban homes make good use of their front porches and yards, instead, which invites more neighborhood engagement and a feeling of community.

Entertaining both night and day

Regardless of the time of day – or year – you and your family can relax comfortably in your outdoor sanctuary, thanks to modern technology and the latest outdoor installations:

  • LED lighting is installed in a variety of ways. You can install strips of light and/or spotlights, even using multiple colors, to add flair at night.
  • In the harsh sunlight, large umbrellas and movable shade walls or screens can keep your space cool and more comfortable.
  • For cooler climates, an outdoor fireplace provides heat and light for cozy evenings in the yard.

Whether you have a straightforward vision for a patio or dream of elaborate outdoor living spaces, these ideas can help you create your oasis. For more information on how you can upgrade your outdoor space, visit Belgard.com.

Embrace Timeless Design Elements For a Lasting Aesthetic

(BPT) – As trends transition in and out of style, an understanding of what takes a space beyond temporary can help achieve a truly timeless design. Whether it’s blending the past with the present for a new take on traditional, or selecting decor and furnishings with a quiet, yet self-assured air, certain elements will establish endurance and ensure an aesthetic that is – and always will remain – relevant.

Enduring interiors

Curate a space that will withstand the test of time by opting for clean lines and even proportions to create an unobtrusive look that will remain effortlessly in style. For a sense of depth and character, consider textured wallpaper, or an authentic rosewood coffee table that will develop a natural patina over time. To further establish staying power, select a complementary neutral palette of soft gray or sandy beige, then accent the clean canvas with quintessential jewel tones for stately elegance.

Classic cues

Invite the past to the present, blending influences from the Edwardian Era and sensibilities from the Machine Age for timeless appeal. Incorporate a modern revival of classic forms with the Invari Bath Collection by Brizo. Subtle design elements display intricate craftsmanship in every graceful nuance, from hand-assembled linchpin joints to finely ridged coining for an artisanal touch. Finishing details, such as black crystal knob handles, elevate the overall look, bringing adornment into a space without excess.

Quiet confidence

A sense of poise and purpose helps to achieve an ageless aesthetic. Select perfectly scaled furnishings that enhance the design, while also serving an intentional role. Opt for fewer, more distinguished elements that can easily transform to changing tastes. Consider a stately stone fireplace to ground the space, or tasteful, yet surprising elements, such as lacquered cherry wood walls or scalloped wainscoting. For an overall cultivated tone, add worldly accents such as a decorative sculpture to create a visually striking and self-assured focal point, then position dramatic uplighting, giving it an almost regal air.

Outlasting elements

Take time to curate a space without granting trends too much influence, whether it be a patient search for an antique mirror or a large-scale painting that boasts modern, yet classic styles for a transitional effect. Make design decisions that lend versatility across aesthetics, from built-in, vaulted bookshelves in the living room, to lustrous tile flooring in the bath space for a clean, polished look. Where possible, maintain a sense of forethought and incorporate decor that is easily adaptable. Elements such as elegant pendant lighting or lush linens can be updated easily to fit current trends, carrying the space seamlessly through time.

Tips To Prepare You and Your Loved Ones For an Emergency

(BPT) – Fires can occur when you least expect it, leaving little time to plan your escape, so the time to prepare for an emergency isn’t when your alarm sounds. According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), only 32% of American households have actually developed and practiced an emergency escape plan. Make time to sit down with your family to plan and practice what you would do in case of a fire or carbon monoxide (CO) emergency. Consider the following tips when helping to prepare yourself and your loved ones:

Map It Out

Begin thinking about a home fire escape plan by first drawing a map of your home, making sure to label each window and door. Identify two ways out of each room and walk through your home to make sure the doors and windows you’ve chosen as exits open easily. If your family’s home has a second floor, consider having escape ladders in each room. You can find templates online to help you get started.

Choose a meeting spot.

After you have mapped out all of the ways you can exit, pick an outside meeting spot a safe distance away from your home, such as across the street, at a mailbox or in front of the neighbor’s home. Be sure that your family knows that once they are outside, they need to call 911 and stay outside. Additionally, explain it is important that everyone knows never to re-enter the home for any reason and to let a firefighter know if someone is missing.

Help your loved ones.

Assign someone in your family who can assist infants, seniors or pets during a fire. The responsible person should be in good health and be able to provide the assistance needed.

Check your smoke alarms.

Having working smoke alarms on each level of the home and in every sleeping area is key to having a safe home. Check that you have alarms properly installed throughout your home and remember to test all of the alarms regularly and replace them at least every 10 years. If you have children, consider installing a First Alert Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarm with voice and location technology throughout your home, and especially in their bedroom. This alarm will notify your child of an emergency, distinguishing between a fire or carbon monoxide incident, in a human voice as opposed to a regular alarm. This is especially helpful if a fire strikes at night. Studies have shown children may have an easier time waking up to the sound of a human voice rather than an alarm.

“Smoke alarms are designed to give early warning in case of fire, and making sure your home has properly installed and maintained alarms is the best defense against one,” said Tarsila Wey, director of marketing for First Alert. “As far as CO is concerned, the only way to detect this fatal gas is with a CO alarm, so have one installed on each level of the home and near every sleeping area.”

Plan. Practice. Repeat.

Once your escape plan is finalized, your job is not done. Gather your family together and put your plan in action. Practice this plan at least twice a year, so if disaster strikes, your family will feel confident in their ability to exit the home safely. To make the drills as realistic as possible, conduct them both during the day and at night.

“Planning ahead can save a life,” added Wey. “Talk with your family to make a plan that fits all of your needs.”

For more information about escape planning and fire safety tools, visit www.firstalert.com.

New European House Plan With 4 Bedrooms

European Style Home Plan chp-60205 | Total Living Area: 4557 SQ FT | Bedrooms: 4 | Bathrooms: Two Full, One 3/4, 1 Half Bath | Garage Bays: 3 | Dimensions: 76′ W x 64′ D

This European style two-story house plan design looks as though it comes from a time gone by. A deliberate blend of stone and shake siding gives this European classic curb appeal that is hard to beat.

You’ll love how the kitchen, great room and dining room all work together in an open floor plan to create a spacious living area perfect for entertaining.

The two-story ceiling over the kitchen and great room adds to the overall feeling of a large home.

The master suite is directly attached to a sun room through a private doorway and features a large walk-in closet and spacious bathroom.

Upstairs you’ll love the balcony that overlooks the main level, and you’ll be pleased to find two additional bedrooms, one of which features a walk-in closet and a built-in desk area.

The finished walkout basement includes an additional bedroom, a spacious family room with wet bar and wine cellar, a separate room for a game table and a large theater room.

Click here to see the plan specifications and more interior photography from the new construction of this European Home Plan.

How To Keep Your House Warm – Even In Freezing Temperatures

(BPT) – With the early arrival of winter, the grip of cold temperatures and snowfall that landed along with it, now is a good time to start thinking about keeping your home warm and cozy all season long.

This winter, consider the strategies below to keep your house warm, even during the most frigid days of the year.

Help your HVAC system work more efficiently

No matter what kind of heating system you have, you can take steps to keep it working at its best.

  • Schedule annual heating tune-ups
  • Change the furnace filter frequently
  • Make sure ductwork dampers are open
  • Check air vents – are they open? Are any blocked by furniture?
  • If you have a home with radiators, make sure they aren’t blocked
  • Avoid wild temperature swings – set your thermostat for reasonable highs and lows at night and during the day, since extremely low temps could result in freezing pipes, and your system has to work extra hard to aim for higher temps than it can handle

Consider upgrading your HVAC system

If you have an older system that just can’t keep up or you live in a climate with extreme temperatures, consider upgrading to a new high-efficiency heating system. It may save you money and energy in the long run, while increasing your comfort level.

Thanks to advances in technology, today’s HVAC equipment can provide more consistent air flow and better maintain a constant temperature in every room. In the middle of winter, all of that adds up to a more comfortable and cozy home without the enormous utility bill.

For the latest and greatest in comfort technology for your winter upgrade, consider a duct-free split system equipped with LG’s newest heating technology, the compact and powerful LGRED° (Reliable to Extreme Degrees), designed for even the coldest of climates. With continuous heating capabilities down to -13° Fahrenheit, LGRED° technology provides superior heating performance that will keep you warm all winter long. This increased performance not only delivers heat when traditional HVAC systems are unable, but operates with top notch efficiency, cutting energy costs and increasing savings.

Pair this technology with sleek indoor units, like the LG Art CoolTM lineup, for comfort without sacrificing style. An added plus is that LG systems can make one or many rooms perfectly toasty without tearing up walls or altering the home’s appearance.

Block the leaks

If you have drafts or leaks in your home, you’re losing valuable heated air and letting in the cold. Start by checking doors and windows for any drafts.

  • Improve your doors’ weather stripping and use a draft blocker to further keep cold air out
  • For windows, an insulation kit and heavy drapes can help you prevent leaks
  • If you have an unused fireplace, install a fireplace plug to keep warm air from heading up the chimney
  • Cover up mail slots or pet door flaps that may be leaking air, especially at night
  • Close vents and shut doors to rooms that are seldom used, so more warm air can be redirected to rooms in use
  • Schedule an energy audit from your energy company to identify areas for improvement
  • Attic insulation is also recommended, since heat rises

Reverse ceiling fans

As heat does rise, ceiling fans set on low and adjusted to turn clockwise will help pull up cold air and draw down and circulate warm air that’s hanging out near the ceiling.

Warm your floors

When heat rises, don’t leave your floors out in the cold.

  • If you’re interested in remodeling, radiant floor heating can help warm up a room, and has become especially popular for bathrooms
  • Invest in thick, plush rugs to help rooms feel warmer to your feet

Following just a few of these tips will make a big difference in helping your house feel cozy and warm, even during the most extreme cold temperatures of winter. To learn more about ways to easily improve your home’s warmth this winter, visit LGHVAC.com.

How To Maximize AI Usage At Home

(BPT) – As the prevalence of artificial intelligence (AI) in the home grows, so too does the amount of helpful features available to make daily tasks much easier. While the abundance of smart home technology (powered by AI) can seem overwhelming, the more you know, the better these functions can impact your life positively. Through a true understanding of these innovative breakthroughs, you can easily expand the usage of AI in your home and take advantage of its benefits.

This vision of life made better through AI was highlighted at the recent 2019 AI Summit | New York at which key speaker Dr. Nandhu Nandhakumar, Senior Vice President of Advanced Technology at the LG Technology Center of America in Silicon Valley, discussed the company’s AI innovations on improving the quality of life as well as the need for a clear direction of AI in the home in the future. LG’s vision is manifested in LG ThinQ®, LG’s brand for products and services incorporating advanced AI technologies. It aims to deliver easy, personalized, proactive and efficient solutions, bringing new intelligence to connected living.

Here are some benefits of AI you may be overlooking:

Be more secure

Some of the newest home security systems, including video doorbells, use aspects of AI to help protect your home and family more effectively.

Security systems using AI can analyze input like video surveillance to determine when something is an actual threat, since false alarms are frequent problems with many security systems, or they can activate facial recognition software to help identify someone approaching your home.

Save water

With AI, such places like your bathrooms and lawn can use smart technology to evaluate how much water is being used and avoid waste. Smart sprinklers can not only be controlled remotely, but will even monitor the weather to avoid over-watering. The latest in-home smart water systems can detect leaks and turn off the water supply to prevent flooding inside your home.

Save energy

Perhaps one of the greatest benefits of AI today is in energy savings, which can be not only cost effective, but also helpful for the environment.

For example, LG ThinQ®, LG Electronics’ brand that incorporates advanced AI technologies, brings new intelligence to connected living through its smart, AI-powered appliances and electronics. On its popular line of dual inverter room air conditioners, you can seamlessly control the unit from anywhere via its smartphone application to turn off or lower the temperature before leaving the house to make any changes. You can even put your home’s HVAC system on “vacation mode” to lower costs while you are away.

This convenient and energy-saving connectivity works for a variety of the brand’s smart home appliances, including laundry machines and refrigerators.

Save money

LG ThinQ® also analyzes your family’s habits and preferences when using connected machines and devices. For example, it can adjust the cooling power of your refrigerator just before the most active time of use each day (such as after school/work and while dinner is being prepared). This leads to a more efficient home and positively impacts your bottom line.

It can also let you look inside your refrigerator to see what you need to shop for or how soon your milk expires. Using this kind of smart technology will lead to less spoiled food, saving money on grocery costs.

Save time

Through LG’s Proactive Customer Care, a service that uses artificial intelligence to deliver the most advanced customer service related to product maintenance, consumers are alerted to potential issues before they happen. It can also expedite repairs and offer useful maintenance tips, saving users time and money while keeping appliances performing at their best.

For added time saving convenience, enabled smart TVs can help you save time through bringing a higher intelligence and convenience to your living room. With the installed Google Assistant and Alexa, you can enjoy personalized entertainment and even enjoy online shopping straight from the TV. They are also ready to control your entire connected home from changing the light settings of your living space or adjusting the room temperature.

The AI platform for LG TVs is constantly evolving through its deep learning engine, and this helps the TVs learn how to properly respond to users based on voice command data. The ultimate goal of LG’s AI platform isn’t just to create a smart device that responds to users’ requests, but to analyze user behavior to offer personalized recommendations and optimal settings for unique tastes and specific environments.

Through meaningful innovations, AI intends to make daily routines simpler and more enjoyable. By better understanding users – recognizing patterns and preferences – it can anticipate user needs and proactively take action on their behalf. The more consumers use it, the better it works for them.

Such features need to be clearly communicated to users to aid in their understanding of the technology. When used well, AI enables consumers to live fully and seamlessly connected to a wide range of products in the home, all working together to make life easier. “We, as an industry, need to do a better job of educating consumers on the advantages of AI as it can be overwhelming. To do this, a clear direction in which AI needs to be headed is a must,” emphasized Dr. Nandhu.

To learn how AI can improve your daily life, visit LG.com/us/lg-thinq.

8 Tips To Prep Your Home During (and After) the Holidays

(BPT) – Hosting guests, baking treats, kids on school break and managing a packed social calendar – the holidays can be a stressful, busy time. And with so much to do, household chores can fall by the wayside, leaving your home messy and disorganized.

These eight tips will help you enjoy a cleaner home so you can focus on spending time with loved ones and start the new year off with a sparkling, welcoming home.

1) In the kitchen, clean as you go

Before you start baking or cooking, make sure the dishwasher is empty and ready for your dirty dishes. As you mix ingredients and use dishes, rinse and place them in the dishwasher along the way so you prevent pile-up in the sink. And as you finish using each ingredient, put it back in its rightful place.

2) Boost your laundry loads

If you host friends and family, chances are you’ll have plenty of bed linens to wash when your guests leave. Save time with a washing machine that can quickly handle your family-sized loads without compromising performance. The LG TurboWash 360 will clean a large laundry load in less than 30 minutes, helping you save money and energy as well.

3) Give everyone a task

Cleaning up is easy when you get the whole family involved. Divide and conquer the cleaning tasks to get the job done in no time.

4) Stock up on supplies

Equip your bathrooms and kitchen with all the necessary cleaning supplies. It only takes a few minutes to wipe up a spill or quick mess – especially when your supplies are within easy reach – making your cleaning tasks more manageable.

5) Refresh kitchen appliances

After you’ve cooked, baked and stored feasts, your kitchen will be ready for a deep clean. Use a disinfecting cleaner to scrub all the surfaces of your refrigerator, freezer, blender, oven, dishwasher, sink, cabinets and drawers. Dispose of food items that have expired or that you no longer need and make your kitchen feel new again.

6) Prevent winter boot mess

In areas with ice, snow, or even rain, boots can make a huge mess. Avoid stepping in puddles inside your home by asking everyone to take their boots off before they come through the door and place them into plastic bags. The bag collects the ice and snow as it melts and keeps your floors nice and dry.

7) Revive area rugs

High foot traffic areas accumulate stains, dirt and odors – so don’t skimp on cleaning your rugs. Take each rug outside and gently shake away dirt and dust. Leave the rug hanging out to remove more dust and air out any odors. You can also use a rug brush to help remove hair or caked-on dirt.

8) Prep for the rest of winter

Even when the holidays are over, winter sticks around for a few more months.

While preparing for the rest of winter, upgrading your HVAC system will help you and your guests stay warm and cozy. With continuous heating capabilities down to -13° Farenheit, LGRED° technology provides superior heating performance that will keep you warm all winter long. This increased performance not only delivers heat when traditional HVAC systems are unable, but operates with top-notch efficiency, cutting energy costs and increasing savings. Pair this technology with sleek indoor units, like the LG Art Cool(TM) lineup, for comfort without sacrificing style. An added plus is that LG HVAC systems can be installed easily by a contractor to make one or many rooms perfectly toasty without tearing up walls or altering the home’s appearance.