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20

Clean your gutters Make sure your chimney is clean Install storm windows Empty the gas from your mower and Reverse ceiling fans


19

After you have closed change all the locks. You don't know who else the previous owner has given keys to over the years.


19

No, in general, you don't need to prime existing paint. To prepare for repainting: wash the wall to remove any grease. fill any holes and cracks with suitable filler, possibly using flexible filler for cracks. sand and prime the filled areas - priming will seal the filler and keep it in place. You might want to sand and reprime the whole wall to avoid a ...


18

Play "what went off" — turn all of the lights on, plug radios, lamps, etc., into as many outlets as possible, then turn circuits off one at a time; make a list of which breaker controls what, and post it near the panel. Make sure you know where the main water shutoff is, and test it to see if it works. If you have a water filter, check it or replace it. ...


17

Take the snowblower out of storage. Put a little bit of gas in and make sure that it starts. No sense in trying to diagnose a small engine problem in the freezing cold (if you can help it).


15

Give your car a once over: Check fluid levels (oil, coolant, brake, steering, transmission) Make sure you top up the washer fluid Check the tires. Check tire pressure, and adjust as necessary Check the treads. If you insert a penny in the tread, and can see the top of Lincoln's head, then you are due for new tires. Double check your spare is in good ...


15

Check/change batteries in smoke detectors. We bought our house a year ago and realized today that none of the smoke detectors had batteries in them.


13

Drain all your garden hoses and insulate external faucets with these.


8

Blow out your sprinkler (irrigation) lines so the water does not freeze and break the line or sprinkler heads.


7

If you want a really nice job, get a drywall pole sander and give the wall a quick going over with 200-250 grit paper before priming, and before your final colour coat. Remember to wipe with a damp rag (use the pole sander if you like) before applying any paint/primer.


7

If you have a fireplace - get the chimney swept/inspected.


7

First of all, they should be done BEFORE you buy the home - ie before you close. Secondly, you want to have a fully qualified, thorough home inspector go over that property with a fine tooth comb. He/she should test all the appliances, verify the working heat and cooling, test outlets and light fixtures, and the like. They can't open walls but the GOOD ...


7

I'm late to this question, but I wanted to share some hard-learned advice. In addition to checking batteries in smoke alarms and testing them (twice a year), do your family a favor and make sure you have a few fire extinguishers for the house. We had a small fire in our utility room, and the fact that we happened to have a fire extinguisher nearby (which ...


6

Two things I wish I'd done when I bought my house: Plumbing inspection using a scope: My home inspector didn't do this service and suggested that I could, maybe, if I really wanted to, get a plumber in to stick a camera in the drains. I really regret not doing this as there was about $4000 in repairs waiting to be done that I discovered when the drains ...


5

About a year ago, I prepared my concrete floors to be covered first with an overlay and then stained. My situation was a bit different, but I bet the prep needs to be about the same. You can read my blog post about the preparation we did on lauramakes.com. For your situation, you will want to use a floor scraper to remove anything loose on the floor, like ...


5

To answer your question: it depends. The larger the screw, the more likely you'll need to pre-drill. If you're installing the screw near the edge, or if the screw is larger than maybe 1/8" wide on the solid part, then I'd pre-drill. To pre-drill, make the hole almost as large as the solid part of the screw (not the threads themselves, they need to have ...


5

I often make checklists for jobs, especially if they are a distance from my shop, and assures my helpers get all the stuff I want on the site. Rather than one word headings, I usually two or three checklists like 1) Tools and equipment. This includes the obvious tools and things like ladders, extension cords, compressor hoses and the like. 2) Material list. ...


5

Cover your air conditioning condenser to prevent snow/ice buildup. Before covering, be sure to clean off the coil, and inspect for any damage.


5

First you need to remove the masking tape and the label prior to painting, or they will show through on the finished surface. Use Goo Gone or Goof Off as BMitch and Tester suggest. (I've never used Goof Off, so I can't vouch for how well it works, but I have firsthand experience on how well Goo Gone works.) Next you need to clean the surface, at least with ...


5

It makes me die a little inside when people paint over raw red brick.... That said, you tape and paper the walls where they meet the brick. Then you plastic from the paper as far out as you think you might overspray. You may even want to form a "curtain" out of the plastic to keep the brick in a make-shift paint booth. It is just as you would mask any ...


4

Priming is best. If you have to do two coats of paint to cover the old color, why not use a good primer or primer/sealer and one coat of a good paint? Most people will say otherwise, but primer will stick to old paint a lot better than new paint will. I recommend wiping the walls down with a damp cloth first, but it's a lot of work, and I've never done it ...


4

There's one tip that was completely missed, and should have been at the start: When painting over a surface that has had to be repaired or was very dirty (scrub it clean first), get both the paint and the primer tinted to the same color. As long as you buy the paint/primer in the same brand and they are both the same base, you will have exact match. This ...


4

Lots of good advice so far from the others. Most important thing of all is to hire your own qualified home inspector, follow him/her around on the inspection and ask questions about systems you do not understand. I good inspector will be happy to explain problems or how items work or should be maintained. Under no circumstances take an inspection report from ...


4

I am not sure how the process is in Canada but generally speaking before even thinking of buying the house you want to do an intermediate survey which checks the integrity of the house. The surveyor will know the type of construction used and will know what problems to look for, cracking in foundations, degrading cavity walls, subsided foundations, water ...


4

For the tape and stickers, try a cleaner like Goof Off. Just be sure to test on the bottom to be sure it won't damage the faux-leather.


3

I have run into the same situation many times. Let me say first, that I don't condone doing work that requires permits without them, as it often leads to crappy quality or safety issues. I always prefer to do quality work, but occasionally budgets make it necessary to do a quicky fix. In your case, the most important thing is to strip away all old wax and ...


3

Overspray can be managed with masking on the sides with kraft paper made explicitly for this purpose. For floors and / or large wall areas you can also use poly plastic that comes on large rolls with the plastic up to 12 feet wide


3

I'd suggest a quality primer (Killz would be a good brand) and then a high-gloss latex, perhaps with an anti-mildew additive (most paint departments will have anti-mildew bases designed for high moisture areas).


3

One paint company defines the various finishes as follows: Satin: A finish with a low luster appearance. Washable surface, reflects some light. Semi-Gloss: A finish that has noticable gloss and sheen. Washable, sometimes scrubbable surface, but shows surface imperfections. Reflects light noticeably Eggshell / Low Gloss: A finish ½ way between ...



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