All Questions

1
vote
4answers
2k views

What would cause an AFCI breaker to trip under no load?

I have an AFCI Breaker that trips with 0 load - nothing plugged in, no lights on. To test that power is getting to the room, I turn on the overhead CFL lights (very light load) and flip the breaker. ...
5
votes
5answers
413 views

What can I do about pocket doors that are blocked by floor tiles?

I have double pocket doors in my den that I never close. I was going to clean them today, and when I tried to close them they would not close because of the tile being to high. I had the tile put in ...
4
votes
1answer
570 views

How to fix drainage from gutters?

I have two drains on the side of my house that have been filled in and no longer properly drain. I know they dont go anywhere because I just finished trying to unclog them with a rented drainage snake ...
0
votes
1answer
211 views

How can I remove flaking (likely lead based) paint from very rough, exterior stucco?

Here's a similar type of stucco to what I have: Mine is light yellow but similarly rough-seas wavy like this picture. Mine is also now looking pretty dingy and I would like to repaint. Upon closer ...
5
votes
3answers
9k views

How can I rewire my bathroom fan, light, and receptacle?

My bathroom has one switch that powers the fan and light. In that electrical box, there is also a hard wired electrical outlet that sits in the bathroom. Since I don't have room for a 2 gang box in ...
1
vote
1answer
231 views

What is the 'orangey' colour on this pine and how do I remove it?

I've recently bought some pine furniture which is well built and solid but needs a bit of TLC. It is also finished with something that gives it a kind of 'orangey' colour. It has some scratches and I ...
0
votes
2answers
294 views

What 'quick & dirty' finish for a concrete floor

I am moving into a new home for 1-2 year period. Its an old office building and the landlord is flexible with how I decorate; as it will eventually be totally gutted and renovated. My 3 rooms are ...
1
vote
2answers
172 views

Cleaning a dryer vent with a sharp elbow

Curious if there is a good solution for cleaning a dryer vent that has two sharp elbows in it, one next to the other. There is a 90 degree bend as soon as the vent enters the wall and another 90 ...
4
votes
1answer
140 views

Is there any reason why I should have a contractor get a permit himself instead of getting it on my own?

We're getting ready to have our breaker box upgraded and the electrician gave us two quotes: One price if we get the permit ourselves... and another price if he needs to get the permit. The second ...
11
votes
3answers
1k views

What size extension cord should I use for multiple computers?

We're hosting a LAN party (several computers, 50+) and I had some questions about power draw; I hope this is the right place to ask. Currently, we're assuming each PC will draw an average of 3.5 ...
1
vote
2answers
175 views

How do I know whether or not I've killed the mold?

I had some mold on the ceiling of my bathroom. I scraped it off with a sponge. The thick black mold has gone, but there are still fainter grey stains all over the ceiling which won't come off, even ...
2
votes
1answer
63 views

How do I replace my electrical receptacle?

There is 1 hot and 4 neutrals tied into one receptacle two neutrals on each screw with one hot on the other side. I want to put GFCI in its place on that circuit. I added a GFCI receptacle downstream. ...
1
vote
2answers
1k views

Did I wire my light fixture correctly?

I'm replacing a light fixture in an old apartment where the ceiling wiring has two brown/red wires and one black wire. When I removed the old fixture it was wired with black to black, the white wire ...
3
votes
5answers
228 views

What is causing extremely high water usage?

Our condo's (12 units, 2 buildings) water usage went from $300 to $3000 in a few months. We don't have separate water shutoffs to test each unit. Nobody's reporting any visible leaks. Any idea how to ...
2
votes
1answer
257 views

How to remove milk smell from hardwood floor?

I spilled a bowl of cereal on my hardwood floor. Now the whole room smells like sour milk. Tried mopping with H2Orange and water a couple hours ago, but it still smells. There are a couple of forum ...
4
votes
3answers
3k views

Can I use a cord and plug to power a wall sconce?

I have a wall sconce that my wife really likes and wants installed on a brick wall. The sconce she purchased is designed to sit on top of a wall box that has been prewired. I don't want to install ...
2
votes
1answer
487 views

Attaching sill plate to concrete, how do I attach framed wall to sill plate?

I am building a 12x12 shed on a concrete slab. I am going to bury j-bolts in the wet concrete so that I can attach the treated sill plate to it. The problem I'm running into is that the nut will be ...
2
votes
1answer
180 views

How can I brace a freestanding downspout?

My front downspout is not long enough and currently all the water just comes back and rests between my sloped sidewalk and the graded edge of my house. I'm thinking I can move the downspout so that ...
2
votes
1answer
261 views

Water Softener using 150 gallons of water a day to regenerate?

We have an Ultimate II water softener that is aprox 12 yrs old. I've been told it's on it's last legs but I don't know much about them. I have a few questions. We noticed our water bill has ...
4
votes
4answers
2k views

How do I install a junction box with NM-clamps?

I bought a junction box in order to splice three Romex together along the 2x4's in the ceiling of my (unfinished) basement. The box looks like this: When I bought it, I assumed that I could just ...
3
votes
2answers
132 views

How can I block this venting from rodents?

As a follow up to this question, I have two 54' x 3 " gaps running the length of an overhang in my roof supposedly for venting. I believe these to be the point of entry for some squirrels and who ...
3
votes
1answer
181 views

When to use a spline vrs a biscuit joiner?

I know how to do either, but want to know if one is better than the other for particular joints (if so, what cases). Or is it just a trade off between time / labor (spline) and ease / cost (biscuit ...
1
vote
1answer
100 views

Can I reuse a live rodent trap?

After finding, what turned out to be squirrel scat in my attic, I set a live a trap to catch the animal in question. I didn't know if they were caused by rats or squirrels, but my suspension was ...
3
votes
4answers
7k views

What is the best flooring for my basement?

I live in Michigan, where humidity is fairly high. I have a 70 pint dehumidifier that works great. I also have a sump pump and water powered backup sump pump. I am looking to floor my basement ...
7
votes
4answers
322 views

How best can I seal up an old coal door?

Alongside my house is an old coal door that was never properly sealed. Some caulk was added around the metal exterior door, and a piece of plywood nailed over the interior opening (more to keep out ...
3
votes
4answers
7k views

What is the most suitable material to use for baseboards in bathroom

I used particle board baseboards in our bathroom a few years ago, but found, even after prepping/painting them, they have swelled up with the moisture in the bathroom (more around the bath area). I ...
5
votes
2answers
414 views

How to fill between door frame and tile

When tiling the bathroom, I cut the door frame higher up than I needed to and now have a large gap. Please advise the best method of filling this gaps so that it looks professional. Some choices - 1. ...
4
votes
2answers
840 views

How should I connect to a short ground wire in a metal box?

I live in a 50's era house that has breakers and a ground wire in every metal box of the house. The problem is they only used 2 prong outlets. They cut the ground wire short and wrapped it around the ...
1
vote
0answers
60 views

Need help identifying 75mm threaded sash window bolt

I recently moved into a new flat with period wooden sash windows. Obviously they are not the most secure and any additional security we can add would be great. One of the sets of windows had 1 of ...
4
votes
5answers
1k views

Why will 26 1.2W 220V LED lights not work with an 800W inverter?

We live off the grid and have just installed 26 220V 1.2W LED lights. We are using 220V as the batteries are some way from the house and and thick copper wire is expensive. Everything works on the ...
1
vote
1answer
210 views

Can I connect two separate ducts systems together?

My apartment, which I own, is split upstairs by two hallways. Each hallway has its own A/C unit, to cool 6 single person rooms each. Recently the south side A/C broke. I have called the repairmen out ...
2
votes
2answers
8k views

Is PVC Schedule 40 pipe safe to use in a potable water supply?

I have not had a problem for nine years and never noticed what my plumbing pipes used. My hot and cold water feed away from heater use "Bristol 1120 Schedule 40 PVC. 480 PSI 73 deg." Is there strong ...
2
votes
3answers
6k views

Why does only the hot water have low Water Pressure from my 2 handle kitchen faucet?

My kitchen faucet is a two handle style with a single delivery spout. The water pressure for the cold water and for ALL the other water sources in the home work fine. The water pressure for the hot ...
2
votes
2answers
2k views

What does this square icon mean on my Honeywell thermostat?

I have upstairs Honeywell Thermostat showing me a square icon since yesterday. The upstairs AC is not working. It is blowing air since the fan is on but the air is not cold. I opened up the ...
0
votes
1answer
403 views

How do I build wall-mounted shelves?

I've spent the past few months getting my flat renovated, and would now like to build some bookshelves across two of the walls in my living room, and around the corner that joins these walls. The ...
0
votes
1answer
2k views

Replacing a standard 2-gang light switch with an electric dimmer switch

I'm looking for a some assistance in fitting a new electric dimmer light switch. I'm in the UK if that makes a difference. I am trying to replace my existing two-gang light switch with a LightWaveRF ...
3
votes
2answers
92 views

Dimensional treated yellow pine lumber, non-standard widths?

I ordered lumber from Lowes for building deck beams, but now I realize after putting up the beam that while they are all level, the boards are of slightly different widths. Of the 2x10 boards I had ...
2
votes
1answer
66 views

How to add dimmer to “one switch controls another switch” configuration

In my dining room, I currently have a switch configuration that functions as follows: Switch 1: when toggled, turns light on/off Switch 2: when toggled, turns Switch 1 on/off Can I have 2 dimmers ...
2
votes
1answer
2k views

Why isn't my 3-way dimmer setup working?

My dining room light is currently controlled by 2 different light switches. However it isn't wired how I am used to seeing them. In my old house, there were 2 switches that controlled the dining ...
1
vote
0answers
142 views

Live wire running through entire apartment wall?

I'm currently renting an apartment and my spouse and I want to hang a metal fixture above the wall where our bed is (in lieu of a headboard...for now at least). Where I want to hang it is 4 feet above ...
3
votes
1answer
2k views

What are these horizontal & diagonal 'studs' in the wall called?

My single-story house was built in the 1940s in the San Francisco Bay Area (Earthquake-country). Here is a picture of the wall with the wallboard removed. This is from my neighbour’s house (Same ...
1
vote
1answer
362 views

Can I add/install overhead kitchen cabinets without a wall?

Setup In my current kitchen, I have a semi-decent (yet always inadequate) amount of cabinet space. I would like to add some overhead cabinets over the peninsula. However, being a peninsula, there is ...
0
votes
0answers
50 views

how to install a portable air conditioner on a second floor

I would like to install a portable air conditioner in my upstairs office and wondered how that might be done. I have regular windows in the office but didn't know how to run the hose and where the ...
4
votes
1answer
272 views

Why does turning my kitchen light off turn on my outside light?

when I turn my fluorescent kitchen light off, my outside p.i.r security light comes on, why? the problem started when my father moved the p.i.r up above the door
2
votes
3answers
311 views

Why does my front loading clothes washer stink?

I have a front loading washing machine which smells really bad. I have also had the brown sludge problem which I've managed to clear with hot cleaning etc. I've noticed I have to empty the filter of ...
1
vote
1answer
666 views

How to efficiently circulate air to keep room cool?

I live in Indonesia and I have an apartment with a 6.7 x 5m room, which contains a dining table and a couch. In this room are two 1.5PK (13,000 BTU) AC units on the same side of room nearer to the ...
0
votes
1answer
104 views

Why does my HVAC begin vibrating and stop cooling at night?

I am calling a HVAC technician since this is probably too complex a problem for me, but wanted to hear some possible diagnosis. The symptoms are as follows: The A/C is working well during the day ...
1
vote
2answers
89 views

How do I keep a triple sat dish stable after directing towards the satellites?

I have a triple sat dish to receive tv channels broadcasted through three satellites. . It is a very convenient dish, it is small making it easier to install out of sight and allows us to watch a ...
4
votes
3answers
271 views

what is the woodworking technique used to build this piece?

I'm interested in building a side table similar to the one shown in this link. The woodwork technique looks complicated for an inexperienced builder (like me). How was this piece built?
0
votes
0answers
110 views

How do I change my closet doors?

I have an old wall closet wich has dark brown wooden doors with a little frame for decoration. Something like this. I would like to achieve this kind of doors: With gloss or dark mirror. The think ...

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