0
votes
1answer
900 views

How do I find and eliminate a sickly sweet smell in my apartment with no obvious source?

Ever since the start of winter my studio apartment has been smelling quite bad. The smell is sweet and astringent, almost like rancid ice cream or sweet vomit. The apartment is only one room and a ...
3
votes
2answers
394 views

How do I replace a door hinge with no screws?

Any ideas on how I can remove this ugly looking hinge that snapped. One end of the hinge has no screws and is soldered onto the door. Any help is much appreciated. EDIT: Ok, I followed @Chris ...
4
votes
1answer
755 views

Why do my downstairs radiators run colder than upstairs?

Our combi boiler in the loft (less than 3 years old Vaillant EcoTec) is heating the upstairs radiators nicely, but the downstairs ones are lukewarm to cold. I have opened all the radiator valves ...
3
votes
3answers
885 views

Is it possible to reduce a 1“ thick board to 1”/N boards?

I have some project plans. Most of the project calls for using 1/2" parts. I bought 1" thick wood, which actually only ends up being 7/8" when I measure it (I have heard this is normal). Anyway, ...
2
votes
2answers
808 views

How can I stop heat loss due to an uninsulated porch?

I have an enclosed porch with very little insulation, it is typically very cold in the winter. However, there is a radiator in the enclosed porch. I have a gas boiler heating system in the house. ...
4
votes
1answer
355 views

Will I cause problem/cracks with jumping exercise in upper floor?

Every day I am doing my martial art practice in upper floor. It contains jumping and power movements which cause sounds downstairs. Is there any problem for concrete by this continuous jerking ...
0
votes
2answers
3k views

What could cause a shower to give warm water for a few seconds, then only cold water?

The house has four bedrooms. The 40 gallon gas water heater is about 60 feet from this shower. The house is a one story house in flat terrain. I have already changed the mixing faucet for the shower, ...
1
vote
3answers
3k views

How do I hang a pot rack in a plaster ceiling?

I am trying to hang a pot rack, and my house is all plaster walls. I have an electronic stud finder but the places it is telling me that studs exist don't seem to be correct - test nails have gone ...
0
votes
1answer
479 views

Will sealing off rafter spaces and unusable spaces help my attic insulation plan?

I am trying to warm an exercise floor in an unfinished attic and save on heating at the same time. I want to evaluate whether covering the rafters in my attic with various materials will be worthwhile ...
3
votes
1answer
434 views

Why do I have low hot water pressure in my kitchen?

I have very low hot water pressure in the kitchen only. I have disconnected the line and have great pressure from the valve. It is a two handled faucet and the cold water pressure is very good. ...
4
votes
3answers
5k views

Should I use Tyvek or tar paper on basement walls?

We are going to be redoing our basement which was done in the 60's and very cold. We have been told to apply Tyvek or tar paper to the walls, stud, then vapour barrier and drywall. We plan on using ...
2
votes
1answer
374 views

How can I improve the insulation in the lower attic space?

I live in a house with a finished attic. There's a substantial upper attic (big enough to walk around) and there are also knee walls between the upstairs rooms and the lower attic. There is ...
1
vote
0answers
256 views

How can I unclog a passive bathroom air vent?

I live in a prewar apartment building. At the top of the shower, on the wall where the water comes in, is a passive vent. There is no powered fan that is installed and no nearby electrical wiring to ...
3
votes
1answer
265 views

Do attic vents or rafter baffles need to be as wide as the rafter bay?

What happens if the attic vents or rafter baffles don't cover the entire opening between the rafters and one or two inches of wood is left exposed?
0
votes
1answer
76 views

Which pH should I aim for when neutralizing restored/refinished antique surfaces?

I have recently used different chemicals to restore, refinish and treat various types of wall and millwork surfaces. E.g. I have stripped old paint using Peel Away 1 from plaster and antique ...
4
votes
3answers
617 views

Why is it OK to use a 50 A receptacle on a 40 A circuit?

NEC's Table 210.24 " Summary of Branch-Circuit Requirements" shows required condudcor and outlet requirements for different circuit ratings: Why is it permitted to put a 50 A receptacle on a 40 A ...
1
vote
0answers
351 views

How can I stop water from coming up through the floor?

I have a house that is on a high water table, and water is coming up through the floor. The property was excavated around the perimeter a couple of years ago and installed a new Big "O". Drycore was ...
4
votes
2answers
2k views

How do I cut bamboo flooring with only a hand miter saw and a circular saw available?

I am about to install some hardwood flooring, which calls for cutting a number of planks crosswise, very accurately. The best tool for this is a miter saw, but I only have a circular saw, and a hand ...
1
vote
1answer
299 views

Where should I discharge my bathroom exhaust to?

Everyone in general lean towards roof or gable end of house venting. Then of these two whichever is shortest run..Also everyone agrees down hill slope toward exterior of house..If one is to vent ...
2
votes
1answer
1k views

How can I vent my bathroom through a ground floor vertical-slider privacy window?

I live in an old style garden level unit in Chicago (roughly 80 years old). The bathroom currently has no ventilation. The window is cracked and I'll leave the bathroom door open when I shower, but ...
10
votes
1answer
419 views

What are “termination points” and why do I need them on my electrical supply?

An inspection of my electric supply service on the outside of my home in Maryland said I need 3 termination points and two grounding rods. The grounding rods I can get but I have no clue about these ...
4
votes
1answer
2k views

Should I use caulk or grout between the edge of a tiled bathroom floor and the walls?

I just tiled my bathroom floor. What should I put between the tiles and the walls, silicone or grout?
2
votes
1answer
128 views

Is there a way to make a thermostat based heating system more accurate through either adding probes or hacking?

In my Brooklyn apartment, heated via steam radiator, my thermostat is in the unheated hallway between all the rooms. The temperature it reads is often different, than both the rooms with heaters and ...
2
votes
0answers
64 views

Should I install the jumper on my new limit control?

I needed to replace fan and limit control (White-Rodgers, model 5D51-35), because the fan switch was broken (fan would constantly run) and heat would not stay on. I took a picture of the control, ...
3
votes
1answer
165 views

What is the correct way to secure a gas standalone range?

Can somebody tell me the best way to secure a gas standalone range. If there is an earthquake, I would prefer that the range not slide around. It's on engineered flooring over 1-1/8" plywood.
5
votes
2answers
1k views

How can I plane the edges of plywood?

I'm working on an 8ft x 12ft climbing wall. I have 3/4 inch ACX plywood attached to a frame. Since the frame isn't perfectly square, the plywood overlaps on the edges (up to about 1cm) so I need to ...
2
votes
1answer
81 views

How do I install a range anti-tip kit into hardwood floor on concrete?

I'm preparing to install an anti-tip kit for an electric range. It's a piece of shaped metal designed to be bolted to the floor with two screws or bolts. The floor is hardwood (probably engineered) ...
4
votes
2answers
3k views

Why won't my deadbolt unlock and how can I fix it?

We've got a deadbolt that decided to stop working today. When we turn with either the key (outside) or the lever (inside), the deadbolt moves about 1/2", but no more. It does not retract all the way ...
5
votes
3answers
335 views

How can I tell if the sagging in my plaster ceiling is getting worse?

We moved into an old house, and one room still has the original 1890 horsehair lathed plaster all over. On the walls it's the consistency of sawdust held in place by a layer of paint. On the ceiling ...
3
votes
1answer
472 views

What considerations do I need to make when mounting heavy objects on plaster walls?

I have just moved into an old apartment in Brooklyn. The landlord has warned us that all the walls are plaster with wood framing. I have not dealt with this type of wall before. I would like to hang ...
5
votes
1answer
621 views

Is it possible to earthquake-proof furniture when you have plaster walls?

Is it possible to earthquake-proof furniture (e.g. tall bookshelves) when you have plaster walls? I was dissuaded from attaching to studs by an employee at a local hardware shop, while at the same ...
-1
votes
3answers
963 views

How can I keep neighbor's cats from using my yard as their litter box? [closed]

My neighbor's cats like to use my backyard as their litter box. I clean up after them frequently. I have two young children and worry that I might have missed something and my kids will get it all ...
8
votes
4answers
9k views

Should I put a dimmer switch on a ceiling fan?

I have a ceiling fan on our bedroom's vaulted ceiling. Since we don't want 7' pull-cords, the speed is stuck at full-tilt, which is no good. The fan has separate switches on the wall for lights and ...
2
votes
3answers
936 views

Should I mount brackets to the wall or the shelves first?

I've planning to mount some shelves using these IKEA Lerberg brackets Should I mount them to the wall or the shelf first?
2
votes
1answer
116 views

Can I wash and continue to use dishes that were in a sink with a brush used for varnishing?

A brush used with varnish has been put into a sink, full of water with dishes. The dishes have not come into contact directly with the varnish, but with the varnish diluted in water. Is throwing all ...
1
vote
1answer
360 views

What could be causing my air conditioner to make a humming sound?

I have an air conditioner that has an in-floor intake. When the heat pump turns on, there is a fairly loud humming that comes from the intake. If I step in certain places around the intake the ...
1
vote
0answers
231 views

Why do I have to seal my bath screen from the outside?

I bought a pivoting bath screen. In the documentation that comes with it they say to seal it from the outside. They even put an exclamation mark ! What's the logic behind that?
4
votes
2answers
9k views

Why is my hot water heater making my water smell like sulfur?

I have an electric hot water heater that gives the water a sulfur smell. It is only from the hot water. I have heard that changing the anode in the unit can help. If this is the case, what material ...
1
vote
2answers
485 views

Which screw and anchor should I use to mount a projector screen?

I have a projector screen which weighs about 8 kg (~17.6 lbs) and to light it up a little for when I don't use it I decided to mount a LED strip behind it. I already bought matching strips of wood (24 ...
0
votes
3answers
1k views

Is a built-in oven easier to maintain than a standalone one?

What is the more suitable to buy, so that its maintenance is easier and less costly, a built-in oven and stove or a standalone oven? A built-in like this one: or a standalone oven like this one: ...
2
votes
1answer
2k views

What are the codes for electrical wiring in attics?

What is the typical code for wiring in attics? I understand these vary but what's best practice? Can you just have electrical wires exposed with all the junctions, in junction boxes, provided all the ...
1
vote
0answers
320 views

Why is my furnace blowing hot air outside?

So I have been having trouble heating my home. I noticed today that there is a vent blowing hot air outside. It is not the return, chimney or venting. Any ideas other that the builder thought we ...
1
vote
0answers
151 views

Is this a scuff on my hardwood floor? How can I fix it?

We've tried using a whole bunch of wood cleaning products for this and similar marks on our floor, but nothing seems to work. What exactly am I dealing with here and how can I fix it?
2
votes
5answers
12k views

How do I replace a wooden fence post that was set in concrete?

I need to replace a wooden fence post that was set into concrete. The post has snapped through rot at the base and the rot has set in so far that the post snapped about 2 inches beneath the surface. ...
2
votes
2answers
1k views

Can I re-use a roller tray liner?

I am wondering if re-using a roller tray liner is asking for trouble. The old paint was white primer; the new paint is very slightly different white. Even if I scrape out all the possible flakes and ...
3
votes
1answer
2k views

How do I easily separate unglued PVC pipe from joints?

I've been retrofitting an existing PVC irrigation system around my house. Part of that work requires that I work in shallow holes adding T joints and elbows in places where there were none before. In ...
4
votes
3answers
6k views

What is the correct use for linseed oil on outdoor wood?

I have doors, patio furniture and windows which all need constant attention in terms of varnish and wood sealers. I have recently found a good contact for raw linseed oil, and would like to use ...
1
vote
2answers
31k views

What is the minimum roof slope to accommodate rainwater drainage?

I have a patio with a 13ft(4m) by 26ft (8m) Roof, the slope runs vertically down the short (13ft) side.. and the height difference from the high point to the low point is only about 10in (25cm). ...
3
votes
1answer
261 views

Should I continue to remove the cement board, or just remove the tiles?

I'm in the middle of replacing the tile in my bathroom and started to take off the backer board but now I'm wondering if I should've just cleaned off the top of the boards and reused it. The backer ...
4
votes
3answers
1k views

How can I wire this three-way circuit between two buildings with only 3 conductors?

I am rewiring my entire house after a major malfunction of two antique knob and tube circuits. I'm up against a challenge with some outdoor lights. Here's the situation: I have a detached garage. It ...

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