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11

Working on a house that you're already living in is a lot more stressful, because you're living in a construction zone. Here are a few tips: Select a part of the house to be construction-free. Your family can be comfortable in that space while other parts are in chaos. Clean up at the end of each day. This will make the construction space less stressful. ...


8

I'm not sure if this question really falls into the DIY category, but it is interesting and I'm sure shared by many inspiring DIYers. You have already committed to the project so some of this advice is not timely. I think the most important factor in DIY work is understanding the scope of the project, and the skills needed to complete them. Working on old ...


7

Unless you have scrap laying around, you'll be buying a 4x8 sheet of drywall anyway (unless you can find damaged panels or the hardware store sells half sheets). So anything less than 4x8 will be about the same amount of work to patch, so cut out as much as you need. Just remember to try and end in the middle of a stud. If it's 8ft. from floor to ...


7

Safety first Make sure you wear proper safety gear. Safety goggles, appropriate gloves, hearing protection (if applicable), and a hardhat, might all be useful safety equipment. Watch out for that... Make sure you know what is inside the wall/floor, cutting through a wire or pipe can ruin your day really fast. "Did it come out yet?" It might be a good ...


6

Just put a piece of drywall in and give it a first coat of mud and tape. Seriously this is 10 minutes and no mess. Big box sells little kits for $10 or less for stuff like this. Then when you get around to selling no one will really mind a little patchwork to do in closet.


5

Check local codes -- you may not get a choice in the matter. Check the door to see if the fire rating requires it to be mounted one way or the other. Otherwise, look at convenience. Will the door open completely with the car in the garage or your workbench in place? From a security standpoint, having it swing into the basement would be more secure as the ...


5

Heading into a major renovation without a detailed plan, materials schedule and a clear budget can turn what should be a gratifying experience into a nightmare. Preplanning is the key to success. Take your time, if you don't have the ability to create detailed drawings of the new layout, then it may be wise to have an architect create some plans for you. ...


5

So based on advice from ratchetfreak in comments I took his advice and went with the 'corridor' effect on the 37" wall (pic below). As the room has two doors it gave me an interesting perspective on what the 'walking into the room' vibe was. For door #1 (the bottom door in pic) I felt like the closet made the room feel smaller on entrance. For door #2 (left ...


5

I don't think this indicates a problem. Circuit breakers have at least 2 different triggers for cutting the power: Thermal mechanism for small over-current protection, e.g. trying to draw 20 amps from a 15 amp circuit. This may take several seconds or even more than a minute, depending on how much over the rated capacity you are. Magnetic mechanism for ...


4

I would guess that your issue is that you didn't prime first. From Wikipedia: A primer or undercoat is a preparatory coating put on materials before painting. Priming ensures better adhesion of paint to the surface, increases paint durability, and provides additional protection for the material being painted You buy primer from the same store you ...


4

Vinyl siding has seams between the pieces. You can push/pull at one of these to make enough room to get a small pen light inside for a peak. You can also inspect around any protrusions like water faucets or vents. Lastly, you can get a special vinyl pulling tool that is a thin blade with a small hook at the end. It's designed to be forced between two pieces ...


4

The tip I got from an electrician was to just buy the big boxes; the cost difference is minor, it's easier to work in bigger boxes, and then you don't have to work about it.


3

I would not let a designer make these kind of decisions. A good architect, a builder, or a good general contractor would be your best bet. You could always bring in a city inspector and ask them for a few thoughts too. If money is no object than almost anything goes with a basement. You can basically put a wall anywhere as long as you aren't moving ...


3

There are a few considerations to cost, I don't consider reliability to be a major factor in either style of roof. Dormer and shed style roofs have been used for many hundreds of years successfully. The main choice for either of these is aesthetics, and simplicity of assembly. First, if you have to deal with a large snow load it is cheaper and easier to go ...


3

It ain't called "divorce dust" for nothing. Living with a home improvement project in the works is indeed very stressful as you can't feel "settled" in your own home, and such projects are often kindling for fights about money (the number two cause of divorce) Confine the projects to one room or area of the house at a time. Living in a completely torn-up ...


3

If your basement is even somewhat functional then I would try to wire to the attic. I think a good rule of thumb would be would you let your out of work cousin stay in your basement a few days? If it is even that nice I would go for the attic, given that you can reasonably get to almost all areas of your attic. Remember for bedrooms with outer walls that ...


3

99.9% of the time, an entry door from a garage into the house swings in towards the house like any other entry door. Not only does it secure the hinge pins indoors, but allows installation of a screen or storm door on the garage side. Often a door opening into a garage would interfere with a car entering or a car door opening if left open. Funny fact: ...


3

This is the same as removing any in-wall cabinet or shelving. Drywall repair really isn't a big deal. Any kind of cover panel is going to raise questions about why access is needed at that point, and "because I didn't want to deal with drywall" is probably not going to be very convincing to the prospective buyer. Frankly, if you really hate the idea of ...


3

Freestanding steel studs are fine (assuming they are anchored to a sill and top plate). Steel studs anchored to the furring strips are fine. Why wouldn't steel studs anchored to the furring strips, plaster and lath be fine? The only limitation would be if the lath and plaster had significant bowing or hollowing in spots that the new studs came in contact ...


3

The hydraulic jack is an excellent way to be sure you have enough leverage, but more importantly, a high degree of control. Jackscrews are not as good at lifting by rotating the leadscrew due to high friction, which is overcome with a cheater bar so there is not as much feel developed. The jackscrew is excellent for holding a load securely, whereas a ...


3

Every 14 ga. wire entering (or exiting) the box needs 2 cubic inches. Every 12 ga. needs 2.25 cubic inches. All grounds together count as 1 wire, as do internal clamps. Every device (such as a switch or a receptacle on a single strap) counts as double the wire size it connects to. Rough add-up (" standing for cubic inches): One 14/2 cable in (2x2"), two ...


3

You would certainly need to consult a structural engineer and get all plans approved and permitted before beginning work. It will be expensive but since you indicate willingness here goes.... It is completely possible to relocate that post. The question will always be price and design. In my humble opinion the work isn't even all that difficult once you know ...


3

You cannot do what you propose. This would create a new installation that would have to meet current code. As you describe this would not even be close to making the clearances. You can however flip the panel around 180 deg where it is now and cover it with a picture or something else that is temporary. You could even simply paint the cover the same as the ...


3

Can I tear down all the dividing floors on the main floor? They are not load bearing of any sort, right? No. At least half are likely load bearing. You will need to bring in an engineer and likely retrofit by installing beams to carry the load. I like the functionality of modern-day plastic framed, double glass windows, but won't they look ...


2

Do smaller projects before you attempt a full remodeling so that both you and your spouse can calibrate your expectations for how long things take, and so that you are sure that you enjoy the process. If the project is large and you only have evenings and weekends available, only do it if your spouse is also taking part in the work (even if it is to a ...


2

A floor drain is no problem in a bathroom, in fact that's a bonus! Just don't let it dry up. As for where to start, here is a general guideline: Tear out all the drywall and to expose any rotten areas. Replace rotten studs, one at a time (full-length, don't patch). You don't won't to remove a whole wall at once, it may be load-bearing. Put in temporary ...


2

I agree with what has already been said, and I empathize with you - DIY renovation is a pain. When I had to do some renovation to a condo I was living in (with 3 small children), my wife and I could only designated a couple hours each night after the kids were asleep to get done as much as we could. My only advice is that sometimes it's actually worth the ...


2

One thing to consider is whether there are any steps involved. A door cannot open over steps. If you absolutely need to have it open into a stairwell, then you need to build a proper landing, big enough for a person, and the door to open. Next, prefer to have the door open inward, so that the hinges are inside. However, the main point of security should ...


2

With the shed style, you have fewer intersections to worry about so statistically you would have a lower risk of leaks. But if a quality contractor does the construction of either style, then you don't have worry about this being a problem. Depending on the construction of the roof, a shed style dormer might not be possible. It's also possible you might not ...


2

Yes you can set drywall directly to the block wall. If it intersects with an exterior wall that is exposed to the weather, I would place a layer of poly of out of the intersecting corner, if accessible, out no more than 2', 18" would probably be better, vertically to prevent any moisture coming through the block and getting into the sheetrock. Use drywall ...



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