All posts in Home Improvement
With spring just around the corner, it’s time to take inventory of home improvement projects you’d like to get done in the months to come. Winter weather can be tough on homes and outdoor spaces often need a little sprucing up before the spring time entertaining season arrives. Continue reading →
Built-in book cases are an excellent addition to any living room. They provide extra storage, as well as give your home a custom, cozy look. We particularly like this Built-in Bookcase Tutorial from Maillardville Manor because it’s utilizes bookcases that are already constructed, making this an easy DIY project. With recessed sides and a center shelf that pops out, this bookcase add a unique touch to the home.
What you’ll need:
- 2 full width billy bookcases
- 3 half-width bookcases
- MDF board
- EcoGlue Premium Wood Adhesive
For complete instructions and diagrams, visit Maillardville Manor. To see more tutorials and tips for building and organizing bookshelves, check out the following links:
Photo credit: Maillardville Manor
On just about every list of popular New Year’s resolutions, you’ll find “Get Organized” in the top 10. After weeks of holiday entertaining and receiving gifts (more stuff!), it comes as no surprise that we aim to tame the clutter in the new year. If you’ve resolved to get organized in 2011, one of the best ways to get started is by preparing your storage spaces.
This week, we’d like to share a do-it-yourself project for creating custom drawer organizers that provide a fast and easy fix to organize the odds and ends that are cluttering your home.
To create custom organizers for drawers in the kitchen, bathroom, or office, you need just two things:
- Wood (such as pine or poplar)
- EcoGlue Premium Wood Adhesive
That’s it! Throw in a jigsaw (or have wood pieces cut at your hardware store), sand paper, and a tape measure, and you’ll have custom drawer organizers in no time at all.
- After measuring the width and length of the drawer you plan to organize, determine the layout of each compartment.
- Select a wood type. Pine and poplar are both easy to work with and affordable. A sheet of 1/4 inch (thick) x 3 inches width works well.
- If wood has not been pre-cut, cut it into pieces of the desired length for each section. Sand the wood to finish.
- Assemble wood pieces in the drawer to test the layout of your compartments.
- Align the boards and apply a small amount of EcoGlue Premium Wood Adhesive to the bottom and edges of the wood pieces.
- Finish gluing and assembling wood pieces.
- Allow to dry for 24 hours. (Full water and heat resistance is reached within 3 to 5 days).
With a few easy steps, you have a custom built organizer that you can create for any drawer in the house. And now you’re one step closer to keeping your New Year’s resolution.
Photos from Yahoo! Shine, where you can find more on this project, and additional ideas.
Now that all the prep work is done, we can get started on the installation of new stair treads and railings. This part of the project, does take some time, but like we said before, it’s well worth it and you’re already half way there! Fore more information on this project visit DIY Network.
Step 1: Cut the Treads
Each tread will need to be slightly different in size. Measure each tread and cut it to size then install it using 2-1/4″ trim screws.
Step 2: Install the Treads
Start at the bottom and work your way up the steps so that you can add extra screws into treads from the back of the riser above it. Space the holes on the treads evenly since the wood filler will be visible after the steps are finished.
Step 3: Brace the Top Tread
Add a 2×4 brace between the stringers at the top step, which will give extra support for the final tread.
Step 4: Fill Screw Holes
Fill in all of the screw holes left in the treads with FAMOWOOD Wood Filler.
Step 5: Install the Hardwood Landing
Staple down 15-lb. roofing felt to the area. Install the nosing border (image 1) that’s cut at a 45-degree angle by pre-drilling the wood, and attach with 2-1/4″ trim screws. Since the nosing has a groove facing out, insert a spline (image 2) in order to create a tongue for the wood flooring to connect to. Use a rubber mallet and protective block to tap the hardwood planks into position, and then secure it in place using a pneumatic floor nailer. Stagger the planks as you work across the landing. The wall may prevent the use of the floor nailer on the last few rows, so use a regular nail gun with finishing nails in the edge of the boards. Rip cut floor boards for the last row and nail in place. Finish the landing’s new hardwood floor by filling the holes with FAMOWOOD Wood Filler.
Step 6: Install the Half-Newel Post
Pre-drill holes in the post and holes for toggle bolts in the wall. Insert screws for toggle bolts and attach toggles on the other side. Insert the toggles into the wall and tighten the screws
Step 7: Install the Newel Posts
Notch the newel post’s bottom to fit snugly around the step and secure it with lag bolts. Attach the bottom newel post goes in the same way.
Step 8: Cut Railing to Length
To mark the stair railing, hold it in place, resting along the stairs, and mark it for the angled cut.
Step 9: Install Balusters
Pre-drill the landing and treads for the balusters, using a special stair bit that drills the hole and then creates a thread to accept the baluster bolts. To prepare the balusters, drill out the center and insert the baluster bolts in the bottom. Screw the balusters into the floor.
Step 10: Attach the Railing
Attach the rail fasteners into the newel posts. Loosen the newel post and set the railing in place first by guiding it onto the rail fastener, and then by inserting the balusters into the holes in the railing. The angled portion of the railing may require removing the bottom newel post. Lining up all the balusters and holding the railing in place goes much easier with two people. Re-attach the newel post and tighten up the rail fastener.
Step 11: Install Moldings
To complete the project, install the new base moldings all around the stairs and landing.
If you’re like us, you’re always planning or thinking about your next DIY project. As we say goodbye to summer and welcome fall, consider these do-it-yourself household repair and home improvement projects that can save you time and money.
Reattach loose tile
If you have tile flooring, you may notice over time that some of the tiles getting loose. This could be because the adhesive securing it to the floor is no longer sticky and all you need to do is use a little heat to make the adhesive tacky again to reattach the tile.
Try this tip from TLC: grab a sheet of aluminum foil and an iron. Place a sheet of aluminum foil over the tile to protect it from the direct heat. Turn your iron to high and place it directly on the foil over the tile. Keep the iron on the foil and tile long enough for the adhesive to melt and reattach to the floor. If it’s a small tile, it should take about five minutes; a larger tile might take 10. Finally, place a heavy object, such as a bathroom scale, on the tile until the adhesive dries again.
HVAC: Install a Programmable Thermostat
DIY Network suggests improving your home’s comfort and efficiency with a unit that allows multiple settings. A programmable thermostat offers more control options and saves on home heating and cooling expenses. It allows you to set different temperatures for different times of the day, and even different times on different days.
Silence a Squeaky Floor
Living in an older home may mean that you have squeaky floorboards. This is generally caused by slightly shifted floorboards that rub against one another and cause the squeak. To get started, be sure to locate all the squeaking planks. Then, apply a small amount of Amazing GOOP Craft adhesive in between them, making sure to wipe excess adhesive away and let it dry overnight.
Patch a Holey Screen
You can fix small holes in your screens instead of spending hundreds on replacing them. It’s easy: just apply a small spot of E-6000 in the hole to seal it right up.
Basement Build Out
Consider this a maximum value big ticket upgrade that will not only add extra square footage, but will pay you back when it comes time to sell. Not sure where to start? Check out HGTV’s Front Door, which provides great advice and tips regardless of your budget. If you’re just looking to remodel an unfinished basement, DIY Network shares easy how-to steps on installing drywall, bamboo paneling, subfloor panels and more.
It is the middle of August, but summer isn’t over yet and there’s still plenty of time to complete those home improvement projects you haven’t checked off your list. If you’re kitchen needs a little facelift, consider updating the countertops with new laminate. Laminate is affordable, easy to care for and available in a wide variety of colors, so it’s easy to find a design to match your lifestyle and taste.
If this is your first time tackling a project like this, we recommend asking a friend to help you. You’ll appreciate the extra hand as well as the company as this can take several hours.
Materials & Tools:
- Belt sander
- Caulk gun
- Rubber mallet
- Saw horses
- EcoGlue Premium Wood Adhesive
- Safety glasses
- Manufactured countertop
- Drawing compass
- Miter clamp kit
- Silicone caulk
- Carpenter pencil
Tips before getting started:
When you measure for your countertop, be sure to include the counter overhang, which is usually between 3/4″ – 1″ in front and on open ends.
The point where two counters meet in a corner must be square. Make a mark 3′ from the corner on one wall and 4′ from the corner on the other wall. If the distance between marks isn’t 5′, consider having a professional make and install a custom counter.
Make all measurements twice for accuracy.
Note: You can custom make your own countertop, or you can select a stock countertop from a home improvement center. Many color and pattern combinations are available.
Shut off power at the breaker box for any electrical appliances under the countertop. Then shut off the water supply at the valves under the countertop.
Double-check to ensure your sawhorses are level and stable before placing the countertop on them.
Step 1: Set and Level the Countertop
- Set and clamp the countertop in place.
- Shim as needed to make it level.
- Check for gaps between the backsplash and the wall. If the gaps are narrow, fill them in with caulk and proceed to step four. If the gaps are large, follow steps two and three below.
- Set a drawing compass to the span of the largest gap between the backsplash and the wall.
- Set the compass point next to the wall and the marker on the backsplash.
- Pull the compass along the wall to mark what will need to be removed on the backsplash.
Step 3: Remove Countertop and Clamp to Sawhorses
- Remove the countertop and clamp it in place on sawhorses.
- Use a belt sander to sand the backsplash to the line drawn with the compass.
- Place the countertop on the cabinet and ensure the backsplash is flush against the wall.
Step 4: Glue Edges Together
- Where two pieces of the cabinet meet, glue them together with the glue from a miter-clamp kit. If the kit has no glue, apply a thin bead of silicone caulk to the edges of both pieces.
- Apply EcoGlue Premium Wood Adhesive to the rest of the edges and press together.
Step 5: Tighten Miter Clamps
- Make sure the entire surface is flush at the seam along the front edge of the counter.
- Tighten the nearest miter clamp and wipe away any excess glue.
- Stand behind the backsplash and push the countertop up and down as needed to make the seam flush along the back of the counter.
- Tighten the miter clamp nearest the backsplash.
- If one side of the seam is higher than the other, protect the surface with a piece of wood and tap the countertop with a rubber mallet.
- When the seam is level, tighten the remaining miter clamps.
Step 7: Fasten the Countertop to the Cabinet
Note: Check the length of every screw carefully before driving it into the countertop.
- If the cabinet has a top surface, fasten the countertop by screwing up through the bottom of the cabinet top into the countertop. If the cabinets have no tops, screw through the front rail and any blocks built into the cabinet.
- Seal the seam between the backsplash and the wall with silicone caulk that matches the color of the countertop.
- Your countertop installation is complete!
Sometimes the easiest way to learn how to do a home improvement or DIY project is by watching it done by someone experienced. For this reason, Mashable put together a great list of the best DIY and Home Improvement channels on YouTube, we think you’ll find quite helpful.
VideoJug offers a huge selection of instructional videos to help you, as they put it, get good at life. The YouTube channel features a selection of their videos covering topics like how to stop squeaky hinges and how to tile a wall. For even more videos you can visit the main site.
Ron Hazelton is the host of ‘Ron Hazelton’s House Calls’ and specializes in basic home improvement projects. He demonstrates things like how to remove wallpaper, how to remove and replace tile grout and how to replace damaged molding.
Tim Carter is the host of Ask the Builder, DIY video tutorials that focus on projects to help you save money and time. Carter offers general overviews of products and processes like roof moss and stump removal.
HomeAdditionPlus offers helpful video tutorials on DIY, home improvement and home remodeling tips and information. Host Mark Donavan’s quick and concise approach may be best for those looking for a project overview as opposed to an in-depth step by step instructional.
eHow Home offers advice on decor, soft furnishings, troubleshooting problems around the home, and cleaning tips.