2
votes
2answers
3k views

Do I need crushed rock under a rarely used rock paver walkway?

I am installing a rock paver walkway in my backyard. It won't be walked on frequently except by my dog. Approximate dimensions will be 9 x 4 feet. A base of about 4 inches of sand will be needed based ...
3
votes
1answer
11k views

Why did my surge suppressor make a “pop” sound when I plugged something in?

I bought a surge-protecting power bar yesterday. It's a seven-outlet model, made by American Power Conversion Corp.; I found it at the thrift store for $4 second-hand. It appeared to be in decent ...
1
vote
1answer
704 views

What framing is needed for swinging closet doors?

How do you frame an existing, finished opening for double swinging closet doors to be installed?
4
votes
1answer
1k views

How do I determine the correct rise of a step for a concrete footing on a slope?

Going to be building a retaining wall in the front yard on a slope. I'm going to be using King size residential bricks to make a 2 wythe wall. Because of the slope I'll need to have 3-4 steps in the ...
4
votes
1answer
478 views

What is the sheathing underneath my brick exterior walls?

I am trying to figure out what is inside of my exterior plaster wall that the brick is attached to. The house was built in 1946, has no insulation in the walls, and (oddly enough to me), has drywall ...
5
votes
2answers
300 views

Are most contractors capable of building any home?

I know very little about building homes. However, I have a vision of what I want my next home to be like. But when I look at the websites of local builders and contractors, it looks like they only ...
3
votes
2answers
18k views

Does it matter if I mix neutrals and grounds in the main panel?

Code question here. I do a lot of electrical and like to follow code exactly. I have done pretty much everything but hook up lines to main box. Taking a stab at it this time. First I see that I ...
1
vote
0answers
211 views

Can I convert my front intermediate light (with only 1 wire) to a junction box with live, neutral and ground wires?

I want to change my entire front light housing because it is old and uses an intermediate-base light bulb. The new one I have purchased has black, white and copper wires. The old one only has a wire ...
0
votes
2answers
3k views

What is the best way to build a simple desk capable of supporting several hundred lbs.?

I'm in the middle of designing a desk that will have to support several hundred lbs., but I'm unsure of what would be the simplest method of bracing to carry a significant amount of weight. All my ...
2
votes
2answers
350 views

Does it make sense to add an upstairs dormer in two phases?

We are planning to add an upstairs dormer to our 900-square-foot ranch (adding about 500 additional square feet). The entire project for us is very daunting and we don't yet have enough money to ...
0
votes
2answers
8k views

Is it better to leave the door open or run the fan while showering?

I want my bathroom door open while showering, and I don't want to have to turn on the fan. My husband wants the door closed and the fan on. Our bathroom seems to accumulate mold regardless of which ...
5
votes
2answers
127 views

How should I landscape my yard to make my home more efficient?

At some point in the future, I plan on owning a home and I would like to use landscaping to improve both the appearance and energy efficiency of the property. I have heard that the right landscaping ...
4
votes
2answers
2k views

How do I fix this leaking tub faucet?

I have an old tub/shower with 3 handles in it (hot/cold/shower on) that are all twist knobs. The hot or cold can not fully disengage because they are a bit older and have some sediment built up in ...
0
votes
2answers
462 views

How do I paint old brass fireplace doors?

Have old brass fireplace doors. Would like them black or some other color. Can I paint these? If so do I need to take the glass out? And with what paint?
3
votes
1answer
140 views

Can I mix joint compounds with different setting times to get a custom setting time?

I'm currently skim coating some really bad looking walls and my 45 minute joint compound is setting too fast for me to get a nice finish. Can I mix the remainder of my 45 minute Joint Compound with ...
2
votes
3answers
2k views

How do I prepare doors to be hung?

Changing out interior doors in house. All of them. Going from brown crap to white 6 panel. I have two hinges on each door. Would like to buy new door with predrilled knob hole, cut it down ...
1
vote
0answers
488 views

How can I attach cabinets and shelves to an Insulating Concrete Form wall?

So my house and garage have been built with Insulating Concrete Forms (Perform wall to be exact) and I want to attach shelves and cabinets in my garage. Pictures and other lighter stuff have been ...
0
votes
2answers
830 views

Plastic or metal pipes? what do you recommend? [closed]

I need to install piping for hot and cold water, do you suggest plastic or metal pipes?
2
votes
3answers
1k views

How do I remove a bolt that's stuck in a ceiling junction box?

I cannot get the bolt off the screw in a ceiling junction box. The junction box is damaged and I need to replace it to be able to put in a new one so I can rehang the ceiling fan. It's time for summer ...
2
votes
2answers
2k views

Do 240V receptacle use the same connectors as 120V receptacles for the same amperage?

I feel like I'm missing something obvious. I know different plug styles are used based on a circuit's amperage (in the US) but is the same style of plug used for both 110V and 220V outlets of the same ...
5
votes
1answer
5k views

How do I widen an existing asphalt driveway with crushed gravel?

I've got an existing asphalt driveway that's around 20 feet long. It's in fair shape. I want to widen it by about 5 feet. The ground is level, I'm in the soggy Willamette Valley, Oregon so frost ...
4
votes
5answers
17k views

How should I prepare a plywood subfloor for floating vinyl plank flooring?

The floor of my laundry room was three layers of hideous vinyl flooring of various vintages, a layer of 3/4" plywood underlayment (to match the height of the vinyl to surrounding hardwood flooring) ...
5
votes
3answers
2k views

Is it a problem that my toilet flange is 3/8" below the surrounding tile?

My tile setter had to elevate the tiles around the toilet hole in order to make up for some unevennesses. As a result, the toilet flange is approx. 3/8" below the surrounding tile. Can that be ...
11
votes
2answers
2k views

How can I tighten a bolt in a circular hole?

I've assembled a set of swings, and am trying to tighten the nuts at the top. The trouble is that they are embedded deep inside a circular hole and I can't get to them with a regular spanner. What ...
3
votes
1answer
663 views

How do I remove carpet tape from a painted wall?

How to remove carpet tape from painted wall without damaging the paint? This article suggests using warm cooking oil, but I am afraid the oil will irreversibly damage the paint. Should I try some ...
1
vote
1answer
21k views

Where do I attach the grounding conductor to my bedroom light fixture?

I have a problem, I broke the center piece that holds the glass part on my light fixture in my room. I purchased a replacement and removed the two screws holding my fixture on to the ceiling. Now I ...
1
vote
1answer
4k views

What economical ways exist to dampen floor vibration on top floor apartment?

I live in a top floor apartment which is above the garage (open air, really just a lot). The unit is at the end of the building; the apartment is held up by columns. The building was built around the ...
2
votes
1answer
92 views

Is there a way to fix a leak in the pressurized side of a pool system without digging it up?

I have a pool that has a pretty bad leak on the pressurized side, and it's not in the backwash line nor in any line that is above ground. Right now I don't know which pipe has the leak in it, but I ...
0
votes
2answers
2k views

What grout to use on this glass mosaic tile

I am curious as to what grout should I use for this [glass mosaic tile][1]? Do I use a sanded or unsanded grout? Has anyone used the Bostik Dimension grout from My Tile Backsplash?
2
votes
2answers
2k views

Why am I getting 20V from a light socket after changing the bulb?

I had a bulb burn out, and when I went to replace it, the new bulb didn't work. I put a multimeter on the socket to test it and I'm getting 20V instead of 120V. There are no other electrical problems ...
2
votes
1answer
24k views

How do I wire a 3 gang switch in my new bath?

I am putting a basement bath in and I need help. I will be adding a new 20 amp circuit for the single pole outlet. Also, a 20 amp line for a 3 switch box. Switch #1 is for the vanity light, #2 is for ...
1
vote
5answers
14k views

What is the official name for wiring hole stops/plugs and where can I buy them?

We have several holes in our house (floor and external wall) that are used for cables (coax and cat5e). The holes are bigger than the cable that goes through them so we'd like to minimize the excess ...
0
votes
1answer
201 views

How do you disconnect a TV cable that runs all along the walls throughout the house?

Is it dangerous to disconnect it by myself, or is the standard protective gloves and shears sufficient? The cable was installed by Time Warner Cable company, and now we no longer have their service.
2
votes
1answer
242 views

Can brick patio and walk edging be removed without damaging the edging?

The original installed patio and walk plastic edging around my brick pavers has become dislodged and is above the lawn line in some places. Can those places or all of the edging be removed and will ...
1
vote
1answer
138 views

Is a single ductless HVAC system more efficient than two smaller ductless systems?

I have an 809 sq ft stand-alone room with concrete slab and block walls that needs to have AC and heat. We have windows on all sides, 8' ceilings, and live in Florida. The room will be used as a dog ...
4
votes
1answer
1k views

How much movement is normal after mounting a TV on partition wall?

I have a wall that's made of plasterboards mounted on metal studs. I have mounted two DVD cabinets (each 22kg) and an LCD TV (40kg). To mount all this, I installed 6mm thick MDF panels across 5 of ...
2
votes
3answers
944 views

Can you make your own epoxy grout?

I've been using it but it's very expensive. The grout powder appears to be normal grout... could I just combine it with some sort of epoxy mix?
2
votes
2answers
13k views

Should I use primer alone first, or can I use paint+primer on renovated/patched walls?

I have a number of walls that have a mix of old lath+plaster and new drywall (parts of walls are plaster, other parts new drywall). The old plaster walls have paint on them but they have not been ...
3
votes
2answers
20k views

How do I transition between tile and drywall in a tub surround?

I'm working on a tub surround, which is about to be tiled. And the last piece I need to figure out, is how to transition between finished tile and adjacent wall. This is how my wall looks right now. ...
5
votes
4answers
2k views

What are these holes in my concrete wall and how can I mount things to them?

I have several 2.3" holes in my concrete walls. I think they were likely used as part of the construction or assembly process. They're maybe an inch to an inch and a half deep, and they look like ...
3
votes
1answer
30k views

Why is water collecting in the base of my furnace?

I changed my filter the other day and noticed a pool of water in the bottom of the furnace, below the filter. The humidifier has been off so that's not the issue. I removed the furnace panels and see ...
6
votes
1answer
6k views

Can I safely make a door frame taller?

UPDATE: April 22 What I ended up doing was removing the trim non-destructively. Above the door frame, it was clearly not load bearing, so I continued and was not so non-destructive. The end-result ...
1
vote
1answer
95 views

How do I patch a hole in the slab under a kitchen island?

This is one step further than How do I remove musty smell in coat closet?. There was a sewage backflow under my kitchen island :( I fixed that problem, but now there's a musty smell in one of the ...
1
vote
0answers
114 views

How can I make a smooth transition from granite to drywall?

I had solid sheets of granite installed for shower. Looks good except for the adjoining areas. First shower does not run width of room - so there is a support wall for the right hand side of ...
4
votes
3answers
12k views

How can I tell if a ceiling box will support a real light fixture?

I removed a fluorescent light fixture from kitchen but I'm not sure the work box will support a real light fixture. The work box is round and plastic. The fluorescent light wasn't even held up by the ...
3
votes
2answers
11k views

Can I use a drywall anchor in a stud to hang a shower curtain rod?

I am hanging a curved shower curtain rod to replace a spring loaded/standard curtain rod. The rod came with drywall anchors (3 each side) and I started drilling the holes for the anchors. First hole, ...
2
votes
1answer
1k views

How can I electrically test an RJ45 plug?

I live in a dorm and there's a RJ45 connector on the wall, which is connected to a router somewhere in the building (which I do not have access to). Supposing I do not know the exact hardware ...
4
votes
3answers
5k views

Why does it take a second for water to come out of the kitchen faucet?

Starting about a week ago, our kitchen faucet has exhibited some odd behavior. When you lift the handle for it, nothing comes out for a second. You can hear air or water flowing, but nothing comes out....
3
votes
2answers
2k views

How can I create low-cost, fire resistant, hidden in-wall storage?

I've taken all the sheetrock off of an interior wall for some renovations we're doing. What I would like to do is use a section of that wall to create a fire resistant hidden storage compartment. It's ...
1
vote
1answer
441 views

How do I clean a root cellar under my porch to make it suitable for food storage?

I have a root cellar under my porch. How should I clean loose stones on the floor and get rid of a musty smell so I can use the space as a safe food storage area. Small field mice entered and some of ...

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