4
votes
4answers
115k views

Toilet not always flushing fully, what could be wrong?

I have a toilet that about half of the time doesn't flush fully, but will always flush fine on the second attempt. It does this regardless of the "contents" in the bowl. I first took a plunger to it, ...
6
votes
2answers
5k views

How can I remove wax from a wooden counter so I can resurface it with Danish oil?

A wooden (beech) kitchen counter has been treated with cheap wax in the past, and is now discolouring because of food preparation and constant splashing. I've decided to make a better job using Danish ...
1
vote
1answer
2k views

Why is my outdoor air conditioner unit making a screeching/squeeling sound?

During the winter time when I have my heat on, my outdoor air conditioner unit randomly makes this awful-sounding squealing/screeching sound. It lasts for about 15-30 seconds at a time, stops, and ...
12
votes
5answers
87k views

How many CFM for a range hood do I REALLY need?

I like to cook. I would like to put in a fairly powerful range (nothing huge, though; I don't need six burners and a griddle), and will need a hood that can carry smoke, heat, steam, grease, etc. from ...
1
vote
2answers
997 views

Is my expansion tank leaking in my oil water heater system?

I have an oil water heater (see related question) used for a hydronic forced-air furnace. There is a backflow preventer on the incoming cold water and return hot water, and a small expansion tank on a ...
3
votes
1answer
599 views

How well would a hydronic furnace work with a gas tankless water heater?

My current heating system (in Ontario) is an oil hot water tank in a closed loop with a hydronic forced-air furnace (Enerzone XAH 68). The water circulates through what is basically a heat exchanger ...
2
votes
1answer
599 views

What would cause my sink to back up and my dishwasher pipe to overflow?

So I installed a new disposal and connected the dishwasher directly to the disposal. I put a stopper in the second drain pipe the dishwasher was draining to and all has been ok. Recently, the sink ...
2
votes
1answer
777 views

What alternatives are there to a gas boiler for private house?

I am looking for gas boiler alternatives for private house. At this moment I have found solid fuel boiler as replacement of gas one. Could someone suggest any alternative to gas technology or other (...
9
votes
1answer
14k views

How can I fix a hairline crack in a thin wood panel of an exterior door?

My 100-year-old house has a wooden front door made of thick wood ribs interspersed with 8 wood panels, each about 10" high, 8" wide, but only 1/8" or 3/16" thick. Perhaps the door originally had ...
3
votes
1answer
5k views

Should I add a vapor barrier to kraft faced insulation?

I am redoing our master bath. We completely gutted the room, and I have two exterior walls with R13 kraft paper faced insulation. Should I add a 6 mil plastic vapor barrier to the walls? Would it trap ...
2
votes
2answers
1k views

How do I stretch a replacement drain hose to fit over the existing pipe?

The original drain hose needed to be replaced, but the new hose is the same size as the existing pipe. What is the trick for "stretching" the hose over the pipe before reattaching the clamps?
2
votes
2answers
398 views

What is the proper installation of a dimmer switch?

I have a wall light that has 18 gauge wire. I want to hard wire this lamp in and put it on a dimmer switch that calls for 14-2 or 12-2 wire. Can this be done? I tried to hook it up but it keeps ...
1
vote
1answer
1k views

What would cause a gas fired, forced water boiler to shut down?

I have a fairly old Peerless, natural gas fired, forced water boiler. It has an electric ignition system (White Rodgers 50E47-843 Universal HSI Ignition Module). A few weeks ago it shut down (safety ...
4
votes
1answer
2k views

How can I install r-max insulation on the interior side of a cinderblock wall?

I am planning on insulating the lower level of my house with R-Max in a method similar to this: I have a few question about it though: Can I use something other than Treated wood as this is ...
3
votes
2answers
2k views

What could be causing strange voltage readings?

My wife bought some new wall sconces for the house and asked me to install them. I'm not an electrician (obviously) but this seemed like something I could handle. So I switched them out, following ...
4
votes
2answers
3k views

Why is my furnace filter alarmingly clean?

I have central air and heat at my appartment I moved into about 6 months ago. Today I decided it was probably long past time to figure out how to change filters in the furnace so I poke around until I ...
4
votes
2answers
7k views

What would cause a kitchen sink to drain very slowly?

I snaked my kitchen sink drain to the end of my 20' snake so I know there is no clog for 20'. When I run water into the sink it starts to fill up immediately - not enough time to fill 20' of pipe. ...
4
votes
2answers
11k views

Proper way to attach tapered, threaded connections?

I've been ripping out the PB water line throughout my house and replacing with PEX and a bit of copper piping. However, the few threaded fittings each have very slow leaks. Above the water tank I ...
8
votes
2answers
1k views

How to build a screen canvas?

In my new apartment I have a lot of space and therefore I want to use a projector to watch TV and movies. Unfortunately, professional screen canvas are very expensive. So I plan to build one by myself....
5
votes
2answers
2k views

How to change the bulb in an enclosed ceiling light?

I have just moved to China and my apartment has these kinds of lights: I simply cant open them! The glass can be rotated without much force, as can the inner metal ring. The outer metal ring can ...
8
votes
1answer
731 views

Can I have multiple GFCIs on one circuit?

I have a 70s kitchen with a very long countertop. I understand that I only need one GFCI to protect the downstream outlets (for example near the sink). However, I decided instead to install 3 separate ...
1
vote
2answers
1k views

Why won't the heat shut off in one zone?

we have a three zone baseboard hotwater furnace. a few months ago one zone would randomly stay on, we did change the thermostat we have not noticed the problem again, but in another zone we have the ...
2
votes
2answers
1k views

What type of sub-floor is suitable for laminate flooring?

I'm planning to put laminate type of floating flooring on a floor. The floor has a sub-flooring of 3/4 inch planks and a sheathing of 1/4 inch plywood. I would like to remove the plywood because its ...
5
votes
1answer
226 views

Is a glass shower screen a suitable backing for mosaics?

I have an old boxed-in corner shower. The glass screen has three panels which are all very hazy. I can't afford to replace it right now. I was thinking of putting mosaics (big pictures - not little ...
2
votes
6answers
2k views

How to remove the “new carpet smell” (VOCs) from new carpet?

My wife is pregnant. We just had new carpet installed in the soon to be baby's room. We didn't realize until after it was installed that the "new carpet smell" is actually a bad thing. From what I've ...
2
votes
3answers
14k views

What tool should I buy to cut through very hard plastic?

I have this 55 gallon blue drum that I just picked up from car spa, but the top is not removable. What tool should I buy to remove just the top part of the plastic drum so that I can replace it with a ...
4
votes
1answer
712 views

What do I need to connect a refrigerator water line?

I currently have a water valve behind my refrigerator, but it's not hooked up to our current refrigerator. I have no tubing coming out of the valve. We purchased a new refrigerator and want to hook ...
4
votes
2answers
4k views

How should I choose between a pegwall or slatwall as a tool storage solution?

I'm interested in putting up a tool wall in my garage/workshop. Taking into consideration the price, strength, ease of use and versatility. Which of the two boards will be best for the job and what ...
6
votes
1answer
4k views

What is required to relocate a garbage disposal?

I have a garbage disposal in my two well sink, only problem is when it was installed, it was placed on the left side of the sink -- closest to the dishwasher, further from the stove. When I'm cooking, ...
3
votes
1answer
201 views

Can I replace the wax gasket without lifting the whole toilet?

I am a woman who cannot lift the back tank of a toilet. To replace the wax gaskets, can't I just turn off the water, remove the bolts from one side and replace with the new gaskets - then do the ...
2
votes
1answer
1k views

How to select the right submersible pump for my fields?

The water level is 300 feet and horizontal delivery is 800 feet flat. I want to use a rotary sprinkler for irrigation. What horsepower (HP) recommendations do you have for the submersible pump? And ...
12
votes
4answers
90k views

Do I really need a special bulb in the oven?

My oven light burnt out recently. After dismantling it I found a 40W 130V "appliance" bulb with a standard Edison connector. The bulb is slightly smaller than a normal incandescent bulb. Looking for ...
4
votes
2answers
2k views

How do I remove paint from plastic window frames?

The paint is dark red and has dried. It only covers little areas on the plastic of the window frame. How do I remove it without damaging the frame? The frames are white.
6
votes
5answers
5k views

How can I extract rusted/painted outdoor screws?

We have an outdoor lamppost that is controlled by a switch from inside. Originally the light was burnt out, so we replaced it, and it started working again, but it blew out the light again. So I'm ...
7
votes
2answers
1k views

How can I remove tiny dust particles from the air?

As a basic prep step before I painted, I sanded some of my walls. Later, I cleaned the area and swept up any visible dust particles. Now however, a member of my family is having difficulty breathing ...
7
votes
3answers
208 views

Should tiles of “stones” be removed from the backing?

We had a stone floor installed in our shower. The stones came on 1' x 1' "sheets". The installer kept the stones on the backing, and now you can clearly see lines in both directions where each 1' ...
6
votes
3answers
9k views

What are the advantages and disadvantages of nails and dowel pins?

I'm planning to build some cubbies and drawers based on the design in the picture in a closet in my house. I'm planning to use plywood for most of it. I've seen some designs use glue and dowel ...
4
votes
1answer
6k views

How can I diagnose disturbing voltage potentials?

Earlier today, I read Acceptable ground to neutral voltage?, and thought it'd be fun to stick my multimeter in the socket and have a voltage to report back. Neutral to ground read 60 volts. My head ...
2
votes
0answers
610 views

Why isn't my Empire heater getting any gas? [closed]

My Empire heater does not seem to be receiving any gas when I turn or press the pilot knob. I believe the gas is supposed to flow when you press the pilot knob to light the heater but nothing comes ...
4
votes
1answer
696 views

Why is water only coming through the handheld hose?

I have a hose at my kitchen sink, installed alongside the cold water faucet. Every once in awhile when I press the hose trigger, it becomes stuck and will not return to the off position automatically,...
9
votes
2answers
24k views

How does Thermal Release Device (TRD) work

Rheem hot water heaters have a device in the combustion chamber called Thermal Release Device (TRD). It contains a vial filled with liquid that seems to be mounted in a flex metal plate. It is a ...
2
votes
2answers
2k views

How do I install GFCI on multi wire branch cicuit? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: How do I install a GFCI receptacle with two hot wires and common neutral? I am planning on changing the old large gauge/3 wire that fed my electric dryer into a multi wire ...
6
votes
1answer
1k views

Should I lubricate the motor in my power drill?

I have a power drill that looks like the picture below. I've had it for years, but recently I noticed that it squeaks when I use it (I only really hear the squeaking while it's winding down, when it's ...
3
votes
1answer
763 views

How can I eliminate moisture dripping from my ceilings?

I have a 30 yr old bungalow. Last year we replaced every door and window in our house to make it more energy efficient. Our main heating source is an air-tight wood fireplace which runs all day ...
1
vote
2answers
794 views

What could be wrong with my furnace?

The furnace started blowing cold air so I checked the furnace and the burners weren't lit only the pilot was on. This happened last year and repairman said that if it got too hot would trip a sensor ...
6
votes
2answers
2k views

How do I restore paintbrushes ruined by dried latex paint?

I have had a couple of good natural bristle brushes for several years. I've been careful about cleaning them until now, but a couple months ago I left them in a jar with water "to get back to tomorrow....
3
votes
2answers
4k views

How can I make a mixer shower more powerful?

The Mira mixer shower has variable temperate settings from 1 (cold) through 10 (hot), plus the extra bit for hot water only. I normally shower at 3 and was thinking there must be a way to let more ...
4
votes
5answers
15k views

How can I locate floor joists?

I want to use some stop squeak screws that pull the subfloor tight to the joists, then break off beneath the surface of the floor. I am having a difficult time locating the joists: my stud finder ...
3
votes
1answer
7k views

How to screw the edge of a sheet of drywall where there is no stud directly behind it?

wall A old wall ________________ edge of frame new wall ________________| | | Wall B | I recently floated a new wall over ...
4
votes
5answers
7k views

How Do I Power A 220 Water Heater Off Two 110 Breakers

First off I know this is not the best idea. To start my 200 Amp Main has suffered a partial failure and as it is old (60s) and unusual it will be very hard or impossible to replace it. Since the main ...

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