For questions generally relating to the proper insertion of a particular device or feature into a home, building or other structure. As this topic is very broad in general, when using this tag please include additional tags to narrow the scope of the discussion to a particular room, subsystem ...

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19
votes
4answers
22k views

How do I remove and reinstall baseboards (Skirting Board) without damaging them?

I need to temporarily remove the baseboards in a couple rooms. I am interested in some suggestions for removing the baseboards without damaging them so they can later be reinstalled. Suggestions may ...
19
votes
2answers
6k views

How much gap to leave between basement concrete floor and bottom of drywall board?

We have a dry basement with a concrete floor. When putting on the wall boards, how much (if any) gap should there be between the concrete floor and the bottom of the board? The boards are 3/8 inch, ...
14
votes
17answers
65k views

When installing hardwood floors, should I use rosin paper, roofing felt, or nothing underneath? Why?

I've installed hardwood floors, over top of OSB subfloor with a layer of roofing felt in between. I copied this from the hardwood floor contractor who did a kitchen in my home once. He'd been in ...
11
votes
9answers
97k views

What direction should laminate flooring be placed in?

I'm thinking of installing laminate flooring and have a question: If I'm installing laminate throughout the house, should ALL of it be going in the same direction? Say for example, let's say I have ...
10
votes
3answers
7k views

Did the plumber hook up my water heater backwards?

I just had a plumber install a new 50 gallon water heater, but the cold water pipe is installed to the hot side (the left pipe when facing the front of the heater) and the hot water pipe is installed ...
9
votes
2answers
5k views

When bolting down a porcelain toilet, how tight is “too tight”?

Tightening bolts on the base of a toilet is the one thing about toilet installation that has me the most nervous. They say not to over-tighten, but how tight is too tight before the porcelain is ...
8
votes
4answers
360 views

Is air conditioner installation a DIY project?

We got a bargain on a brand new 6.2kw Split System Inverter Air Conditioner. The quotes we've received for installation are almost as much as the unit cost itself. Is this something I should be ...
8
votes
1answer
326 views

Is it ok for my doors rough opening to not be square if I'm installing a prehung door?

I have a door rough opening and it isn't square but the sides are level and the top is almost level. I am installing a prehung door and it fits inside the rough opening but it doesn't have an even gap ...
8
votes
4answers
2k views

How can I install a recessed light container in an abnormally thick ceiling?

We are in the middle of our home remodeling and we have just noticed that our ceiling seems to be a bit thicker than what the maximum our recessed lights allow for. As shown within the picture link ...
7
votes
6answers
3k views

Carpet company wants to charge me for the waste they will have left over. Is this normal?

My floor measures out at 296 sq ft, but the carpet company wants to charge me for 330 sq ft. Their reasoning is that they are not charging me for the actual square feet of total area, but for the ...
7
votes
3answers
6k views

What consistency should drywall mud be?

I've been reviewing various drywall videos and documentation but I haven't found clear details on what kind of thickness the joint compound should be. Is there a definitive answer for this? Or does ...
7
votes
3answers
11k views

How do I install wood shutters on a brick house?

I've built some Board-N-Batten shutters and am ready to hang them on the house. However, I've never installed shutters before, so I want to be sure I install them properly. Do I drill pilot holes in ...
7
votes
8answers
20k views

How do I uninstall a receptacle when the wires are stuck?

I just installed a receptacle in my basement and I realized I need to reinstall it someplace else. The leads are inserted into the holes behind the receptacle and I can't get them out! The ...
7
votes
5answers
5k views

Which way should a door between the garage and basement swing?

Looked everywhere for proper answer. We have a 2 car garage attached to the basement. This house is old, built in 1968, we purchased this 2 years ago and were renovating here/there. We just ...
7
votes
3answers
4k views

Should my toilet flange sit on top of the backer board or the tile of the floor?

The bathroom model saga continues. The old toilet flange was rusting, and the subfloor was rotting, so I pulled up the subfloor around the toilet, and replaced the drain pipe with ABS, and an elbow. ...
7
votes
3answers
2k views

Are new “low noise” whole house fans actually quieter?

I've dealt with a number of older whole house fans (10 years and older) and the one thing they all had in common was a ton of noise. Are the new "low noise" fans actually that much quieter than the ...
6
votes
4answers
527 views

What's the easiest process for cutting bathroom flooring tiles to fit complex door trim?

I'm going to be laying in some fairly heavy-duty vinyl bathroom flooring tiles (similar to the Armstrong Caliber product, although I'm not sure it's actually that brand). The bathroom has some tough ...
6
votes
1answer
902 views

Is it OK to mount a smoke detector vertically?

In my basement I have several lolly columns attached to wooden beams that are supporting the floor joists. On one of these wooden beams I have attached a smoke detector vertically on the side of the ...
6
votes
1answer
12k views

Do I need an outlet box to install an outdoor light fixture?

We're getting a sliding door and deck installed this week and the town inspector said I need to have an outside light by the door. I'm ready to tackle this part myself. Most of the howto stuff I ...
6
votes
3answers
963 views

What should go between a wood plank sub floor and a hardwood strip floor

I am about to install a hardwood floor into a room in my 1905 farmhouse. The subfloor is 8-12" wide 1" thick planks. The floor I am installing is 2-1/4" prefinished solid hickory tongue and groove. ...
6
votes
1answer
802 views

Installing new toilet. Does the wax ring have to fit snug around the hole in the underside of the toilet?

I got a new toilet complete with installation kit. The illustrations on the directions appear to say to apply the wax ring around the drain opening beneath the toilet then set the toilet down on the ...
6
votes
1answer
723 views

Our vinyl floor install will need to be redone — will new vinyl need to be used, or can the existing vinyl be reused?

I had a company (whose name will not be mentioned unless they refuse to fix the job) install a new vinyl floor. I'll spare all the ugly details except the one that's relevant to this question which is ...
6
votes
1answer
144 views

What do I need to know before selecting and installing a cat/pet door in a door?

We want to (finally) install a pet door for our cat. It will most likely be a model that will install in the laundry room door, the optimal location for it in our house. This brings me to my first ...
6
votes
2answers
287 views

What is the proper and accurate way to measure space for window screens?

One of our metal windows is missing a screen and I'd like to replace it. I don't have other windows of the same size so I can't easily copy the screen dimensions. How should I measure the window ...
5
votes
6answers
13k views

What material should I use for a custom, do-it-yourself desk for my home office?

I am currently remodeling my office, a converted formal dining room, and I am stuck on what material to use for the desktop. Currently I have a 1" thick Cherry Veneer particle board that is 6' wide x ...
5
votes
1answer
971 views

How can I add 100 amp electrical service to a shop?

I am going to wire my shop and want ot run #2 copper to a 100amp breaker panel. I really do not have the space in the 200 amp panel in the house, my question - is there a way to pull this wire off the ...
5
votes
2answers
8k views

How do I install a portable air conditioning unit in a large sliding window?

I have a large sliding window that is 53 inches top to bottom and I want to install a portable air conditioning unit. The kind that don't sit in the windows but vent to the window. The window ...
5
votes
3answers
6k views

Can I install cellulose insulation without a blower machine?

I've purchased a few bags of loose fill cellulose insulation from the local hardware store (GreenFiber brand). How will the insulation work if I don't put it through the machine to fluff it and force ...
5
votes
2answers
6k views

How much weight can an old work box hold?

I will be installing new light fixtures in two bathrooms that look like this: Each fixture will be replacing a light box. Meaning it is a simple chrome plated box about 30" wide with a plastic ...
5
votes
1answer
715 views

Should a curtain drain be covered/back filled?

I do some light maintenance and yard work in exchange for rent. The building had some problems with flooding. We have an extensive drain system, but it was a bit clogged. Even after the plumbers ...
5
votes
1answer
125 views

Bought a US appliance and powered directly off Aus mains, is it boned?

Hope this is on topic for this stackexchange. I recently bought a lamp from the US and had it shipped to Australia. Stupidly I powered it straight off the mains through an adapter. The device is ...
5
votes
3answers
2k views

Should backsplash be tiled before or after installing kitchen cabinets?

I've been searching the Internet and all English-speaking web sites state that the backsplash should be tiled after installing the kitchen cabinets (both lower and upper) and countertops. In some ...
5
votes
2answers
694 views

How Is “Super Laminate” flooring installed?

I recently learned about AABSO "Super Laminate" flooring (aka Vinyl flooring planks). It seems to have some advantages over standard laminate flooring when it comes to moisture resistance so I'm ...
5
votes
3answers
668 views

How do I secure a vinyl window to the wall?

When installing my vinyl windows should I put a nail into every little hole around the window? It has a flange that has many little holes around it. Also what size nails would you recommend? Finally ...
5
votes
1answer
77 views

Choosing Hurricane Shutters

In Florida, it is now officially hurricane season. I am in the market for aluminum hurricane shutters. However, I do have some questions. Home Depot offers aluminum shutters that are either 48 inches ...
4
votes
4answers
3k views

Do I have to check if my floor is level before installing new linoleum (from a roll, not tiles)?

I just tore up my old linoleum flooring and will be installing new linoleum in the next few days. Some internet research has revealed that I need to make sure the floor is level and, if it is not ...
4
votes
1answer
610 views

Is it frequent to use two Ethernet cables for one phone line?

I'm experiencing some noise on my phone when it is connected in the wall. There's no noise when connected right in the modem. So I decided to check things out and I noticed something that seems odd ...
4
votes
5answers
7k views

How do I install this wall mount bathroom sink?

I'm replacing a sink that was on a vanity cabinet and hoping to do as little busting through the perfectly good tile as possible. I heard a rumor that I need to make very sure that the sink is ...
4
votes
3answers
9k views

How do I install a pre-hung door in a rough opening that's too wide?

I'm replacing an interior door -- including the original jamb -- in my house with a new 30" pre-hung door. With the jambs, the new door is 31 3/8" wide. However, the original rough opening is ...
4
votes
2answers
5k views

How can double swinging closet doors be installed?

I have a coat closet that long ago had double sliding doors and now has no doors at all. I would like it to have double swinging doors, like french doors but without glass. I found a couple of ...
4
votes
2answers
300 views

How far to put a prehung door in a rough opening?

I've put in a prehung door before but the last one had a brick-mold on the exterior part of the frame and I just pushed it in until it was against the house. The prehung door I have to install now ...
4
votes
1answer
324 views

Installing a new exterior door into a taller existing opening

We are remodeling our 1948 home, and the previous owner was quite tall. We are trying to replace our exterior door, and have come across a wonderful deal on a door. Here is the issue: How can I make ...
4
votes
1answer
2k views

How do I add a quiet blower or fan to a gas fireplace?

I have beautiful fireplace in my family room, although it is gas rather than wood burning, and it vents strait outside. Due to the nature of how it is vented, I don't really get much heat from it, and ...
4
votes
1answer
2k views

How do I anchor an acrylic claw foot tub?

I have been working on remodeling my bathroom. As part of the renovations we have decided to replace our old tub with an acrylic claw foot tub. The tub is extremely light weight. I am assuming that ...
4
votes
1answer
271 views

Can hurricane shutters be installed horizontally?

Looking at the photos at this site, it appears that they are able to be installed horizontally. Do you have to use a track or can you drill into the shutters and then Tapcon them to the masonry? I ...
3
votes
3answers
1k views

What are the pros and cons of vinyl gutters?

I need to add some gutters to part of our house and I'm seriously considering vinyl gutters because they seem REALLY easy to setup (with minimal tools required too). That being said, I've heard some ...
3
votes
2answers
421 views

What is the most efficient way to dig a hole in a slope?

I need to dig a rectangular box hole for a rainwater cistern. The dimensions are 4m x 3m x 2m (13ft x 10ft x 6ft). There is a slope of about 10 degrees, and the dirt will be used at a point of lower ...
3
votes
4answers
12k views

How do I install laminate counter tops? What are some tips/tricks to it?

I'm preparing to install a new laminate counter top in my kitchen; as this is the first I have installed by myself, I would like to know if there are any tip/tricks or things to look out for while ...
3
votes
4answers
2k views

How do I widen a hole in wood for flex tube?

I bought some 1" smurf tube so that I could run coax, ethernet, and speaker cable to various low voltage outlets in my house. I used a 1-1/4" speedbor bit to make a hole in the floor from my crawl ...
3
votes
2answers
238 views

How do I install kitchen cabinets?

I am thinking of replacing all the cabinets in our kitchen. What is the process for installing kitchen cabinets? (Ie. best to start in corner, and work out? Top cabinets first?) Edit: We have two ...