2
votes
1answer
3k views

Are T12 fluorescent lamps still available?

My '70s house is chock full of fluorescent tubes. the T12s look the best with the architecture. those pansy T8s are way too small. Anybody have a lead on where to get 48" 32W T12? PS. can we add '...
6
votes
2answers
13k views

Should I replace old wooden siding with brick?

I'll say first, that this isn't a question about DIY, but more about the idea and whether we should go through with it. We bought our first house last year, and in the Spring this year, we are ...
10
votes
2answers
677 views

Where can I get a switch for a 30A circuit?

I would like to add a switch to a 30A plug, but I am having trouble finding one (they are all rated at 15a/20a). Is there a reason you can't buy 30A switches or is it called something different? To ...
3
votes
1answer
435 views

Does a replacement propane supply line have to be made of a special material?

One of the propane rubber hoses in a portable generator has cracked and broken in several spots while the other one is in fine condition. As a stop gap a washing machine supply line was cut and used. ...
5
votes
2answers
5k views

How can I solder a wire onto a piece of metal?

I am replacing the antenna on my radio. I removed the old antenna to find that a wire had been soldered directly onto the bottom of the antenna. I attempted to solder the wire onto the new antenna ...
4
votes
2answers
259 views

What Good and Affordable Alternative Power Source Would You Recommend?

I am woking on a startup (read: using my computer always). 80% of the time, I generate my own electricity with a petrol/gas generator. On new years day, the Nigerian government increased the price of ...
7
votes
3answers
172 views

How can I determine if a contractor has a valid license?

Is there a website that you can check to see if a contractor is licensed and is valid? Is it a state by state thing, or is their a national database as well?
6
votes
4answers
4k views

What is normally done to bridge skirting boards around an opening with different floor levels on each side?

I have to attach some skirting boards on recently plastered walls and openings. The issue is that the floors on each side of the opening are at different levels, therefore the opening has a step on it....
3
votes
2answers
8k views

How can I prepare slightly uneven tiled floor for vinyl 'planks'?

I recently bought some very nice vinyl planks for reflooring our kitchen. It was only when I got home that I noticed it said they have to be installed on 'flat, smooth' surfaces. Our kitchen is ...
4
votes
4answers
375 views

What methods can be used to make a dark colored window become opaque?

Currently, I have some problem regarding some windows, which are dark-colored. During the day time, people outside the windows cannot see people inside the windows. However, during the night time, ...
3
votes
3answers
11k views

How can I mount speakers that don't have mount adapters?

How can I mount a pair of speakers to my apartment walls? Specifically, how do I mount speakers that have no mounting points? They are from a turntable set from the 80's most likely before the ...
4
votes
1answer
224 views

Can blue painter's tape turn glass blue if left on too long?

A yokel told me that the blue painter's tape can be permanent. He heard of someone leaving it on the window pane too long ( like a year ) and it turned the glass blue. Is there any merit to this ...
11
votes
5answers
95k views

How should I run wiring for my above-fireplace mounted TV?

I'm going to mount my 47" LCD above my fireplace. I'm not looking for arguments against this decision. I'm looking for wiring solutions. The diagram below should help explain the situation. ...
4
votes
2answers
3k views

What's involved in upgrading a circuit?

I have a LOT of computer equipment in my bonus room. Additionally, during the summer, our HVAC system has difficulty keeping it cool (as a side note, the HVAC was replaced recently, so it is not ...
1
vote
2answers
7k views

What is the expense and difficulty of moving an exterior kitchen wall?

I'm considering a kitchen remodel, that is in the front-right corner of a house, and surrounded by a covered deck on both sides. The deck extends out 8ft in the front and 9ft on the right. I'd like ...
5
votes
1answer
288 views

Should I apply termite preventative products to pressure treated wood?

There are pressure treated (4"x4") fence posts (set in concrete) nearby to a house. In that area there were previously termites (professionally treated in-ground). This is in a humid region, along the ...
3
votes
1answer
4k views

Why is there green stuff on my heater pipe?

No, really the baseboard heat is made of copper and is constructed of a series of pipes with fins. they look like heat sinks, or dissipation helpers. Well, was cleaning the carpet by the baseboard ...
11
votes
3answers
4k views

Is there a special name for a 3 foot long drill bit, and where can I buy them?

I'm looking at the websites for our local hardware stores (Rona, Totem, Home Hardware, Home Depot) for a 3 foot long drill bit, but all I'm coming up with is standard bits. The problem is that it's ...
7
votes
2answers
15k views

If I do not have any fuel burning devices, do I need a carbon monoxide detector?

Is there any reason that a home without any fuel burning devices would need a carbon-monoxide detector?
4
votes
1answer
222 views

What's wrong with an electrical outlet that will power a lamp but not a space heater?

Thought my space heater had died when I plugged it in and it wouldn't turn on, not even the "on" indicator light, so I went out and bought a new one. When the new one wouldn't work either, I tested ...
3
votes
2answers
601 views

Is there a way to sound proof my basement while I've got part of the ceiling open?

We had a header beam installed in our basement. The floor joists are exposed for 1ft (~30cm) on both sides for the length of the beam. The basement is an apartment, so I'd like to add some sound-...
25
votes
7answers
45k views

Would you ever wire white and ground together?

I was replacing some outlets in my house with tamper-resistant ones, and came across one where the white and ground were wired together, as seen in this picture. Why? Is that okay or appropriate ...
1
vote
1answer
3k views

How to stop a shower stall from leaking

I have a corner shower stall that's leaking. The leak is occuring on the right hand side of the shower stall, about a foot off the ground. What can I do to stop this leak? Here is the shower stall: ...
3
votes
5answers
8k views

Where can I find computer readable RGB values for brand name paints?

Where can I find computer readable RGB values, or equivalents, for brand name paints such as Benjamin Moore, Sherwin Williams, and Behr paints? [Edit] My interest was not so much about the specific ...
3
votes
5answers
75k views

Why does my pilot light keep going out?

My furnace pilot light keeps going out so I changed the thermocouple. Now the furnace will come on and heat up to the degree set on my thermostat, then the pilot light will go out and the furnace will ...
0
votes
2answers
265 views

If they can put a man on the moon, why can't they build a 'composter-friendly' under-sink disposal? [closed]

If they can put a man on the moon--and add wi-fi to our thermostats--why can't they build a 'composter-friendly' under-sink disposal? I'd love a disposal that could send the ground up 'solid waste' ...
1
vote
2answers
10k views

How can a glossy finish be achieve on a wooden desk?

I'm planning to build a desk for my workstation and I wanted to have a glossy finish something like this. I'll be using a 3/4" thick plyboard and plan to cover it with patching compound to have a ...
4
votes
1answer
2k views

How do I wire a switch/receptacle combination?

Here's my current situation. I've got 14/2 to the ceiling. The hot wire has a runner, which runs down to the switch, and the other wire is a switched hot, back to the light. The other side of the ...
6
votes
2answers
2k views

Why the price differential between a cheap hammer and an expensive one?

Went to my local DIY store last week to get a hammer (somehow managed to lose my tried and tested hammer over the winter). I had a rough idea a new hammer was going to cost me £10 to £15. When I saw ...
5
votes
1answer
14k views

How should I repair damaged enamel in a clothes washer?

We have noticed recently that when clothes are left in the washer for more than the "usual" waiting time that they sometimes pick up rust spots. On inspection of the wash tub, I found that several of ...
4
votes
2answers
3k views

Can my apartment's electricity harm my computer? Is there an easy way to test the electricity?

I live in a (rented, 1980 built) row townhouse in the USA with slightly suspect electricity: A few of the outlets and light switches in the house (in various rooms) don't work at all. (Even ...
5
votes
1answer
608 views

What should I do with a 3-way light switch that is no longer needed?

How do I get rid of a 3-way switch? I am rewiring some lights in an older home and found that one of the switches is a 3-way. However, the light it was originally for was removed years ago. So we ...
3
votes
3answers
1k views

Plywood floor gets inexplicably wet, what could possibly be the cause? [closed]

House is on piers with insulation underneath. We had a plumber come look at it and he says he sees no pipes there, has no idea, cannot help. Every day there is about a 4 ftx4ft area of light water, ...
2
votes
1answer
626 views

Replace 7“ metal duct with 6” flexible or 8" flexible?

I am replacing the flexible ductwork in my attic, which is a mix of ancient 6" and 7" metal ducting. I'm having a hard time finding 7" flexible ductwork for sale locally, but no problem with 6" and 8"...
7
votes
7answers
27k views

How to remove closet shelf clips and brackets without damaging the wall?

The previous owner of my new house installed ClosetMaid shelves in the closet. I removed the shelves, but had a really hard time with those clips and brackets (pictures attached). Seem like they were ...
6
votes
2answers
2k views

Spray bottle w/ vinegar solution…eventually makes spray bottle not work…why?

I bought two spray bottles intending on using it for cleaning solutions. I filled one with a 50/50 vinegar/water solution for household cleaning. After a few weeks of use, the pumping action on the ...
3
votes
2answers
4k views

How to patch this PVC elbow connection?

I bought a home about 3 months back, and recently discovered a slow leak under a wall in my utility room. I ended up removing that part of the wall to get to it, and the leak is coming from the feed ...
2
votes
2answers
4k views

need feedback on radiator heating systems and carbon monoxide

I live in an old apartment with radiators for heat, The gas boiler is down two levels in the basement. oddly enough there are no cold air returns...is this correct? Our carbon monoxide alarm ...
8
votes
6answers
30k views

What is this soft, sticky wood finish and how do I remove it?

We have a second-hand table with a mysterious finish. The wood underneath is pale, possibly pine. With the finish, it's a slightly darker and "warmer" colour. The table is not antique; I'd guess only ...
4
votes
2answers
8k views

Should I bind the edge of an unbound remnant rug? If so, how do I do so?

I was looking at possible area rugs for my apartment and found that the cheapest one was something called an "unbound remnant." However, a little googling revealed that unbound remnants shed their ...
19
votes
5answers
21k views

What is the best way to incrementally finish an unfinished basement?

my wife and I are in the process of buying our first house. The house has a 750 square foot unfinished basement (cinderblock walls and concrete floor), and is brand new (rather, it will be brand new ...
7
votes
3answers
1k views

Is it OK for bushes to touch the house and fence?

I have a house in the Seattle area. A realtor told me to trim all the bushes so that they don't touch the house and wood fences before putting it for sale. Is that really necessary? What's the harm?...
12
votes
1answer
1k views

How can I fix the noise level in my home?

When anyone walks above me in our two level home it sounds like a herd of elephants stomping through. Is there any way to fix this?
4
votes
1answer
7k views

How to design a radiator cover for good heat distribution?

I want to replace some battered, ugly radiator covers in my 1910 home. I have read that to function effectively, a radiator cover needs openings at the front top and bottom, so that natural ...
3
votes
5answers
7k views

Is cleaning out the main sewer line a regular scheduled maintenance item?

I just had to have my main sewer line snaked, and the technician said it should be done once every 2 years. Is this really the case, or was he just trying to insure he has job security?
1
vote
2answers
3k views

What could cause a clicking sound in an underfloor heating controller?

I have a underfloor heating system installed in my apartment. Each room has a Uponor T-37 thermostat, hooked up to C-35 controller. The system is about four years old and recently I have noticed a ...
1
vote
1answer
948 views

How to balance thermostat settings between zones to maximize efficiency?

I recently purchased a house so this is my first winter in it. The house was built in 1939 so most of the house is on a single heating zone using hot water radiated heat. The radiators are cast iron ...
1
vote
2answers
273 views

What could be causing my oven to display an error when touched?

Often, when I touch my oven, especially in the area of the controller, the oven controller lights up completely and resets to "PF". or Power failure. I then need to set the clock all over again and ...
2
votes
3answers
5k views

How do I fix a stuck toilet tap that hasn't been turned in 3+ years?

I am trying to close the tap which connects to my toilet tank but the tap will not budge. I don't think that this tap has been touched in more than 3 years. Is there a way to fix it so that I can ...
3
votes
2answers
3k views

Why is my toilet backing up?

I have a house bulit in 1959 and the original bathroom/toilet keeps backing up. Not sure how old the toilet is. The plumber says its a 3" steel line running out to the yard and he installed 4" pvc ...

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