Basic DIY Home Repairs

A lot of repair jobs can be completed without calling a contractor. This is a chance to save money and become self-sufficient. Doing repairs oneself empowers a homeowner and saves a lot of time and money. All a homeowner needs are some basic tools: screwdriver, pliers, and a plunger. Homeowners just need to roll up their sleeves and make sure they have the right tools at home. The following are five common issues that a person can repair him or herself.

Toilet or Shower Leaks
Over time, the seal on toilets, showers and sinks may wear away. Thus, some moisture may scape. This can result in water damage or even mold. Caulking the area replaces the seal. Firs, one should use caulk remover and a putty knife to remove the old seal. Next, one should use a tube of caulk to draw a replacement line. Experts recommend practicing drawing a straight line on a piece of plywood to get used to the material.

Toilet Clogs
A clogged toilet is a common issue. The first step to fixing this is to look and see if there is an object clogging the bowl. A young child may have dropped a toy into the toilet or someone might have left a sanitary napkin there. Using gloves, removing this object could quickly fix the issue. If this doesn’t work, one should use a plunger. A homeowner should make sure this plunger has a solid seal so that pumping it will add the right amount of pressure. A plumbing snake could also help clear piping of toilet paper or other objects.

Leaky Faucet
Leaking faucets can cost people a lot of money in water and energy bills. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has estimated that the average homeowner wastes 11,000 gallons of water because of drips. To fix this, one should first turn off the water in the home. This valve is usually in the basement area of a home, though many individual sinks or faucets have valves so that only that water supply is turned off. First, one needs to unscrew the faucet handle so that it is removed. This could be at the back of the handle or near the decorative metal piece. Next, homeowners should remove the packing nut with a pair of pliers. The valve stem should be removed along with the screw near the washer. The washer will need to be replaced – bringing this item to a local store helps a homeowner choose the right replacement. All a person has to then do is add the new washer, replace the screw and put the faucet back together. This should stop the leak.

Squeaking or Sticking Doors

As the seasons change, wood expands or tightens up. For example, during the hot and humid months, doors may swell up. To resolve this, one should try to scrape some of the wood so that it fits again. Additionally, it is always important to check the hinges and see if any of the screws need to be tightened or if the hinge itself should be replace. If this does not work, one can sand off some of the wood using a carpenter’s plane or even some sand paper. Homeowners should draw a line where the door is having trouble closing. Depending on the spot, one may have to remove the door to shave the wood off.

Scuffed Linoleum
No one wants their flooring to become scuffed. However, normal wear and tear and even just sliding a chair the wrong way can add marks to the space. All a homeowner needs is some toothpaste, a cloth, WD-40 or an eraser to deal with this. Adding the toothpaste to the spot and gently rubbing often will remove the dirt and debris. Similarly, using a pencil eraser can also clear the mark. Another option is to add some WD-40 to the spot and to lightly rub it. After this, homeowners should degrease the spot with some dishwashing soap.

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