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How to... fix a squeaky door

  • Try applying petroleum jelly on the hinges.
  • Powdered graphite is also an excellent lubricant, however the powder needs to be used very carefully, so that it doesn’t stain carpets, for example. You can use white lithium grease as an alternative, especially if you have white doors.
  • Still squeaking? Carefully lift the pin out of the hinge andlubricate the whole pin.

How to... tighten loose cabinet handles
  • Of course you can tighten the screw with a screwdriver.
  • But if the screw keeps turning, try a bigger screw, if possible, or put some glue in the hole (with a toothpick or cotton swab) to fit the screw better.

How to... remove scratches in wood
  • There are actually special wood fillers to fill scratches in wooden cabinets. They come stained in different shades of wood, natural or even stainable, so that you can stain them to the individual color of your cabinet.

How to build a basic toolbox

 Basic toolbox

 Keeping a basic toolkit is always a good idea, because you can easily do basic household repairs yourself quickly and cost effectively. Leaking pipes, stuck cabinet doors or a loose screws shouldn’t be a problem with the right tools around. Here is how to get started:

 

Decide which tools you might need the most

 And if you’re unsure? We are introducing different tools on a regular basis (click here) to give you an idea of which tools are a good addition to a basic toolbox.

 

One tool at a time

 Rome was not built in a day and getting started with your first toolbox doesn’t really mean you need to break the bank by getting all tools at once. Even professional contractors build their toolkits over time. Start by getting tools as you need them and look for bargains on other tools that you think will be useful. Next to regular sales, refurbished tools can be a great bargain. Or look out for TSA auctions where you can get confiscated tools for less.

 

Budget

 This is an important thing to consider, since saving on the wrong end might actually lead to getting low-quality tools that will probably snap after a couple of times of use. Ask family, friends, neighbors or your favorite contractor for recommendations. If you’re putting together a basic toolbox for household repairs, invest on common tools you’ll need more often and rent the ones you are likely use once (such as a floor sander).

 

Storage

 It might seem obvious, but actually thinking about where to store your tools is quite important: it’s definitely not fun in running around the house trying to locate a screwdriver when you need one. You can store tools in a drawer or invest in an actual toolbox with dedicated compartments for every tool. The trick is to put the tools back in place after every use.

 

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How to deal with snow

 Girl shoveling snow

Catching snowflakes, making snowmen and indulging in some exciting snowball action can be great fun for kids. But winter can also be a lot of work for homeowners – waking up to inches of snow and ice on the roof, driveway, porch, and everywhere! Here are a few tips that help you deal with snow better.

 

Equip Yourself

First things first – dress appropriately when you’re up for some DIY job! Wear layers of warm clothing and never forget to slip into proper snow boots. Start your snow-clearing project right in the morning. After all, doing away with loose snow is always better than moving hard snow.

 

Get the Right Shovel

While swapping the shovel between hands and keeping the shovel blade closer to you are common tips to reduce strain on your body, choosing the right shovel makes all the difference. Make sure the shovel has a long and lightweight handle with a slight bend, so you need not strain your back with every scoop. For the snow to slide away easily, the shovel should have a non-stick surface. And remember, a smaller blade lets you move more snow with less effort. If your goal is just to push snow off the driveway, use a snow pusher instead of a shovel. Spreading some salt, sand or wood ashes when you’re done is a great way to provide proper foot traction and de-ice the ground.


Do It

When you’re ready to mow, space your hands wide apart on the shovel handle to get more leverage. You will have to squat and stand upright while shoveling. To avoid pain, be sure to keep your back as straight as possible. Bending at the knees and not at the waist can work wonders. It’s also imperative that you don’t extend your arms while shoveling. Work with smaller portions at a time and dump the shovel loads in such a way that you don’t have to twist your body every time unloading it. Once it is done, treat yourself to a hot cup of your favorite beverage!

 

Other Options

Often, it’s the avalanche from the roof that causes more damage than the piling snow on the ground. Dealing with it is just as simple as installing a snow guard to the roof. Apart from snow shovels and pushers, you can use electric snow blowers or roof rakes.

 

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