Home Improvement

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How to Care for Your Septic System

If you live in a rural area or have vacation property in the middle of nowhere, you’re no doubt familiar with the form and function of a septic system. In brief, a septic system is your very own onsite [more…]

How to Balance Your Central Heating System

If some rooms in your home are too hot, some too cold, and some just right, you need to fine-tune your heating system for maximum efficiency. Balancing your central heating minimizes energy consumption [more…]

How to Troubleshoot Your Home Thermostat

If your house too hot or too cool, your problem could be the thermostat. Troubleshooting thermostat problems isn’t that difficult. Once you find out what the problem is, you can fix it or decide you need [more…]

How to Fix Curling Vinyl Tile

Curls in your hair may look great, but when they’re in your vinyl flooring, they can lead to bigger problems. Curling vinyl occurs at seams and edges. The adhesive that’s supposed to hold the vinyl flat [more…]

How to Fix Gouged, Cut, or Scratched Sheet Vinyl

Sheet vinyl has far fewer seams than tile, so when it comes to making a patch, it can be a little trickier than replacing a single tile. Obviously, the best patch is a piece of the original flooring material [more…]

How to Remove Rust

The real secret to dealing with rust is to remove as much of it as possible before trying to apply a new finish. Depending upon the configuration of the item in question, removing rust can be a tedious [more…]

How to Care for Glass Shower Doors

Glass shower doors look modern and stylish and keep water off your floors, but some people hate them because they are hard to clean and slide off their tracks too easily. You can use the hints here to [more…]

How to Fix Fireplace Cracks

In a masonry fireplace, firebrick is used to construct the firebox. Refractory brick panels line the firebox of a prefabricated metal fireplace. In both cases, the bricks and fireclay mortar are designed [more…]

How to Fix a Stuck Fireplace Damper

The damper is a steel or cast-iron door that opens and closes the throat of the firebox into the flue. Often, a damper becomes difficult to operate or sticks in one position. One of the most pervasive [more…]

How to Care for the Outside of Your Chimney

A chimney can be an exposed pipe, a framed enclosure that is covered with siding (called a sided chase) that houses the flue pipe, or a masonry chimney. The chimney travels from the inside of the home [more…]

How to Prevent Carbon-Monoxide Build-Up in Your Home

You want to avoid carbon monoxide (CO) build-up in your home. CO is the number-one cause of poisoning deaths in the United States. It's an invisible, odorless, poisonous gas produced by the incomplete [more…]

How to Remove Grease and Oil Stains from Concrete

You probably let your vehicle rest in a garage, carport, or driveway when you’re not driving it. Depending upon the mechanical condition of your vehicle, oil and grease spots soon begin to decorate the [more…]

How to Level Settled Brick Patios and Walkways

Although leveling and resetting a brick patio is slow, heavy work, it’s not a complex project — just one that takes time and effort to do right. If you are ready to break a sweat, gather your tools and [more…]

How to Recoat an Asphalt Driveway

Few home-maintenance projects are easier than sealing an asphalt driveway. Mostly you need a strong back to maneuver the big, heavy buckets of sealer. When you’ve gathered everything you need, follow these [more…]

How to Clean Masonry

If you have a brick home, you probably have some problem spots in your masonry, such as mold growth or oil and paint stains. If these unsightly areas bother you, you can clean them. The most common masonry-cleaning [more…]

How to Preserve Your Deck

One of the best ways to protect your outdoor wood surfaces is to use a high-quality, oil-based wood preservative. Using an oil-based wood preservative with ultraviolet inhibitors keeps your deck surfaces [more…]

Tips for Painting Your Deck

A painted deck or fence can be beautiful, but painting can also be a real problem. Unlike wood siding, wood in decks, handrails, fences, retaining walls, and other complex structures expose several surfaces [more…]

How to Fix a Sagging Gate

A sagging wooden gate is a nuisance at best, and can, at some point, become impossible to open. The problem must be pretty common, because someone has already packaged and marketed a repair kit for exactly [more…]

Preventing Grills and Patio Furniture from Rusting

Barbecues, patio furniture, handrails, lawn and garden equipment, steel window frames, rain gutters, and downspouts are all susceptible to damage by rust. Aside from its ugly appearance, untreated rust [more…]

How to Add a Tempered Glass Inset to a Laminate Countertop

If you have a damaged area on your kitchen countertop, you can replace it with a tempered or heat-resistant glass inset. Then you can put a hot pan or baking dish directly onto it without worrying about [more…]

How to Fix a Broken Hard-Wired Doorbell

In older homes, doorbells are hardwired into the door frame or very near it. They usually don’t present problems for years. But, inevitably, they no longer work and you have to take them apart to repair [more…]

How to Maintain Hot Water Heating Systems

Hot water heating systems need a little maintenance, like venting the radiators and draining the boiler, to keep things running efficiently. Gravity and hot water furnaces are not often installed in new [more…]

How to Recane a Chair

Chairs with machine-woven cane are easy to repair. Look at the seat. Does a band of wood on all four sides frame the cane? And is there a “ribbon” between the cane and the wood? If so, you can fix the [more…]

How to Paint with a Sprayer

You can't just hook the sprayer up to the paint and start painting. Painting with a sprayer takes a little practice. Try perfecting your technique on cardboard. After you're sure you can provide nice even [more…]

How to Patch Chipped Wood before Painting

Before you paint your woodwork, you need to prepare it. If the wood is chipped, gouged, or otherwise damaged, and you plan to paint, you can make an easy, invisible repair by using a two-part polyester [more…]

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