Quick Fixes for Small Problems around the Home

House MAde Out of Tools

We’ve all been there – there are a couple of smaller problems around the home that shouldn’t really take all that long to fix, but… for one reason or another, we just haven’t got around to actually fixing them.

They’re a pain in the neck, even if they’re not particularly difficult to complete. Putting something off is infinitely easier than actually doing it!

But, unfortunately, we have to do it sooner or later. So with that in mind, we thought we’d cover some of the quickest fixes around, so that – if you have a problem that needs sorting out – you can get round to fixing it tout de suite! Sorted.

Squeaky Door Hinges

Your door hinges are squeaking all the time – is there anything more annoying than that? Luckily for you, it’s a super simple fix: all you need to do is spray a bit of WD-40 on the hinge, working in the liquid by moving the door backwards and forwards for a minute.

If you don’t have any WD-40 to hand, you can always try rubbing some petroleum jelly onto the hinges.

If neither of these works, it’s time for a bit of elbow grease. Lift the hinge pins out a little bit, then lubricate them up with a little three in one oil. Make sure to use a paper towel or two to catch any errant drips!

Peeling Wallpaper

Again, super simple tip, this. Grab a pot of wallpaper paste and blob some of it onto a knife. Then you just smear it onto a bit of regular old writing paper, then rub that paper against the underside of the wallpaper that’s peeling.

Next, simply press the wallpaper firmly into the wall, and slide out the writing paper from beneath the wallpaper. Lastly, you just need to smooth out the paper – we’d suggest using a clean cloth to do this.

Dusty Chandeliers

Dusting your chandeliers – where do you start? It’s a good job we’re here, isn’t it? First of all, use your common sense: turn off the lights. After waiting for the fixture to fully cool down, pop on a pair of cotton gloves. Dab one with a little glass cleaner, but keep the other dry.

All you need to do now is to rub each fixture with the dampened glove first, drying them off afterwards with the dry one. Spotless!

One thing, though: if your chandeliers are crystal, you don’t want to use glass cleaner. Instead, substitute it for a solution made up of three parts distilled water to one part rubbing alcohol.

Slamming Doors

Yet another annoyance around the home, slamming doors can thankfully be fixed with a minimum of effort. All you need to do is to get hold of a handful of pieces of foam weather stripping, and affixing a few smaller bits around the doorstop.

If you’d rather use something that you’re more likely to find around the home, grab one of those wide elastic bands that you’ll often find wrapped around a bundle of letters. Wrap the band around one of the doorknobs then stretch it around to the other side, wrapping it around the other doorknob. This will act as a cushion, stopping any nasty slams.

DIY Tips for Beginners

Frau beim Heimwerken, Werkzeug

Just by having a few tips on your side, DIY can be made a whole lot easier, and more enjoyable to boot. DIY is there to save you a bit of money, but it can be pretty costly on your time. Luckily for you, we’re here to save you a bit of time with your DIY.

It’s the best of both – so what have you got to lose? Here are our tips!

Stop Wood from Splitting

When you’re hammering nails into thin wood, you risk the wood splitting. Use this age-old carpenter’s trick to prevent that happening: drive the head of the nail into the wood perpendicular to the grain. Simple!

Keep Your Brushes in Good Nick

The best way to keep your paintbrushes in good condition is also one of the easiest: hang them from a clothes hanger after you’ve cleaned them. Keep them going for longer!

Avoid Splinters

Drilling a hole into wood? You’re always going to encounter a bit of splintering on the bottom. How to avoid this is nice and easy – all you need to do is pop a bit of spare wood underneath it, and secure it all together with clamps.

Stop Paint Drying on the Tin Edges

If paint dries on the edges of the tin, it can make it hard to get the lid back on properly, which could in turn cause the paint inside to start drying?

How do you stop this? Simply fold a bit of foil around the edges.

Drill Holes into Glazed Tiles

You don’t want to risk your drill slipping as you’re making holes in glazed tiles. All you need to do to avoid this is popping some masking tape onto the tile. Make a cross with two short strips, with the centre on the hole. Then get to work!

Catch Dust While Drilling

When you start drilling into a wall, it can create a whole heap of dust. If you want to avoid that, all you do is get a Post It note and fold it in half. Stick it to the wall beneath where you’re drilling, and all the dust you create will fall neatly onto the “shelf” you’ve made below it.

Put up a Level Shelf

Putting up a shelf is an easy job. Making sure it’s perfectly level, however, is less simple.

Here’s an easy way to make sure your shelf is 100% level. First, fix one support to the wall. Next, place the shelf on top of the support, and a spirit level on top of the shelf. Move the shelf slowly upwards, until you can see it’s perfectly level, then pencil a line below the shelf. Hey presto – that’s where to affix the second support!

Magnetise a Screwdriver

A magnetised screwdriver is a surprisingly useful thing, especially if you need to put some screws into awkward to reach places. You can easily magnetise your screwdriver at home, simply by getting a magnet and running the magnet over your screwdriver repeatedly, always in the same direction.

Need to stop it from being magnetised? Just put the same pole on the screwdriver and run the magnet in the opposite direction.

How to Project Manage Your Home Repairs

Planning and project managing home repairs and conversions is, arguably, more important than the conversion itself. If you don’t plan or have a strict timetable in place, you’ll find it difficult to keep everything on the right track. Plus, the longer your house is filled with dust and building debris, the more miserable you’ll be. Follow these 6 steps to keep your home repairs on track. For help getting the job done, take a look at these links for builders and building materials.

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  • Plan your budget. Write down everything that you’d like to get done, in the order of importance. For example, getting your kitchen redone is more important than remodelling a bedroom. Creating a beautiful new bathroom is (for most) more important than painting the dining room. Write down a list of everything you need to do, then ask a professional (or get a builder’s quote) how long everything will take and how much money you’ll have to spend. Take it step by step, and don’t do one job here and one job there – it’ll really frustrate you.
  • Keep changes – changes of the project – to a minimum. It is unbelievably expensive to change things like your kitchen cabinets halfway through or the placement of plumbing pipes or electrical outlets. Make your plan, double and triple check that what you’re doing is what you want and stand by your decisions!
  • Choose materials wisely. If you’re on a tight schedule, keep in mind that fancy or more expensive materials will usually take longer to ship, longer to fit and longer to incorporate into the build. But on the other hand, these materials could be well worth it.
  • Consider starting your repairs during the “quiet” period. For example, in the winter, storm damage is more common, but if you try to get someone to repair it they may well be booked up for the next month. Instead, call your builder and ask them when they’re most busy, and book your home repairs to occur during their quiet period. Also – and this is really important – pay for the job, rather than the hour, otherwise you could find yourself out of pocket.
  • Plan repairs according to the seasons. Sort out storm maintenance in the summer and clear out drainpipes in the summer before they get blocked with leaves during the autumn.
  • If you know that you want your home to be transformed in time for Christmas or a special event, plan, plan and plan some more. It’s unfair to give them a tight schedule, especially if they’re likely to be incredibly busy.

Source: The Nest