Questions tagged [old-house]

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Once a person has bought a house (not new build) what are things to be done to maintain the house?

When we buy a car, we have to check its oil and coolant level and periodically change its filters. Different parts of the car need to be changed as the car ages since some parts have longer lifespan ...
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3answers
140 views

Using new lumber in an old wall with larger lumber dimensions

I am trying to widen the doorway to a room in a house that was build in 1905. the framing is 16 on center, however the lumber is wider than a standard 2x4. by about a 1/2 inch. (the actual dimensions ...
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1answer
61 views

Electrical tape vs Wago connector

I live in Argentina where everyone use tape and nobody know Wago connectors. Should I use tape or Wago for my house? Wago can be purchased on Ebay, not in local shops.
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40 views

Blocking Arizona Termites

So, the termites in Arizona live in the ground, and they make mud tunnels up the side of the foundation of a house to get into the wood. I was thinking, if I make a plastic lip which curls down, and ...
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1answer
71 views

What should you look for when buying a 100 year old home that has been renovated to look brand new? [closed]

I am looking to buy a 1900 house with detached garage that has been completely renovated and additions have been added to the house. However, what would be the things to look out for in such an old ...
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1answer
209 views

Safety when modifying old electrical work

I have a relatively old house, built in the 1950s. I am slowly updating it to have smart switches etc., but the existing electrical wiring is fairly haphazard. Just yesterday I replaced a dimmer ...
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3answers
55 views

Can I use separate circuits for Light / Ceiling fan combo for future backup power integration?

I am in the process of rewiring my 100 year old house. I would like to use 14/3 wire from the breaker box to run 2 separate circuits, one side will be just lights, the other side will be just for ...
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2answers
64 views

Old house, no ground wire, hoping for protection of new computer?

So, I live in an older house. My current computer has happily plugged into a surge protector, which in turn plugged into a 3 prong adapter into the two pronged outlet for 8+ years. The surge ...
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Old electrical box - how to cover?

I'm replacing and old Rittenhouse doorbell transformer as part of a smart doorbell upgrade. My problem is that the screw spacing of the cover (of which the transformer is embedded) doesn't seem to ...
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1answer
84 views

Tiling over broken fireplace hearth

My flat is an old Glasgow tenement flat built around 1900. When I bought the place, the fireplace had been badly covered. I now want to do the fireplace up so removed the covering. I am planning to: ...
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2answers
451 views

1730 House how to make Ceiling Level

We had a fire last year and had to remove our plaster ceilings. We’re left with beams that have all kinds of shims etc. that were used to level the lath. Every drywaller has had a different idea of ...
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What's this exterior wall treatment and how should I paint it?

I need to paint the exterior walls of this house, but I am not sure what is the material of the walls. I know this type of houses came from Finland to to south of Argentina because they are excellent ...
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1answer
113 views

Is it okay to reuse Alumiconn connectors?

After having redone the aluminum-to-copper pigtails in my house's electrical outlets using AlumiConn connectors, I subsequently had to undo a few to debug a wiring problem. All I did is unscrew the ...
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29 views

Adding dedicate circuit to old panel

I want to add a dedicated circuit for a wall heater in the bathroom. Attached is a picture of my power panel. How do I tell if I have enough room to add to my existing panel? Housing is currently knob ...
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3answers
250 views

Mystery current on neutral wires coming into outlet box

In reworking outlets and switches in our 1960's California home to use AlumiConn connectors + copper pigtails where needed (instead of older wire nuts + Noalox), I came across a duplex wall box in the ...
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55 views

Can I use old cloth-jacketed wiring to power a new light?

I removed some wood paneling in a hallway closet and found this wire bundle between the studs. Is this electrical wires? Can I reuse this to install a light source for the closet?
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2answers
152 views

Two way door lock for thin door

I'm converting one of the rooms in my 1840 house into an office. The thing is I have 5 kids and need to be able to lock the door so I can have some level of quiet. I also don't want the kids tinkering ...
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1answer
192 views

Passing wire down through Exterior Wall

Replacing some old wiring with crumbling insulation. One of the wires passes down through an exterior wall from the attic, to an outlet on the second floor, and continues down to the first floor. I ...
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2answers
126 views

Hardware for a barn/sliding door that cantilevers into free space when open

I've salvaged an old door from a neighbor's demolition to upgrade the door of my small laundry closet. I thought it would be interesting to mount the door as a sliding barn door, both as a visual ...
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1answer
104 views

my house has old warped joists. Is joist blocking safe?

I purchased a house built in 1960 and like other people have mentioned the terrible bounce, I got the same exact situation. I'm thinking of installing blocking to strengthen the floor. The 7 joists ...
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1answer
140 views

Is joist blocking safe on these old warped joists?

I purchased a house built in 1960 and like other people have mentioned the terrible bounce, I got the same exact situation. I'm thinking of installing blocking to strengthen the floor. The 7 joists ...
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1answer
73 views

How old is my house?

Have purchased an older home in Corinth, MS (No. Mississippi) and found that ALL the walls are T&G on the inside with shiplap on the exterior (the exterior has been resided with vinyl which will ...
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1answer
131 views

No grounding wire in an old house?

My new house was built in 1966 and I've been told by the inspector and the electrician that put in the GFCI outlets that the meter and box are grounded but that no third wire was run through the house....
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2answers
71 views

Remove old light box with a stud and nut anchor

I read a post asking this question, but there is no answer for actually removing the box. I do want to remove the box to install a retrofit recessed LED light. My bungalow was built in 1952. All ...
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1answer
53 views

Trying to change out a ceiling fan need help… 5 wires

I'm in an old house. I removed and replaced 2 out of 3 with no problem. I get to the third and there are 5 wires: 2 black, 2 white/cream, and one bare copper wire. I think I have it hooked up right ...
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1answer
88 views

Is is okay to run 4" PVC drain pipe on the outside of a house?

I have to run 4" drain pipe for the washer that is on the second floor, but, the building being old and all, I wouldn't want to rip the floors, instead, I was thinking of running the drain on the ...
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1answer
69 views

Hanging heavy things on old walls. Running out of options. What would you do

Just moved in to an old victorian home and the wife wants shelves in the mud room. Now I know what you are thinking "Shelves?! Seriously?!", Just hear me out. These are 6 foot shelves with 4 steel ...
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1answer
510 views

Old structure: 2X4 studs at 24'' on center

I have an old freestanding 2-car garage on my property that needs a lot of work. There are some major rot issues where the sills were sitting in water for a long time. Which brings me to the issue: ...
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0answers
46 views

Air brick in old Toronto home?

We have a house that was built in 1937 in Toronto. It is a double brick design. On one of the outside walls, I can see what appears to be a single-brick-sized vent and I don't know what its function ...
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1answer
105 views

New plaster over top of exposed horsehair plaster in Bathroom

I've taken wainscoting off of my bathroom wall that seems to have been around since the house was built (1900). Under one of the walls is an exposed horsehair plaster that was done right up against ...
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1answer
3k views

What is this balloon with “eyes” printed on it, hanging from the eave on this house?

I have seen this, or something very similar on various houses in the city I live in. It is rare enough to be remarkable, but common enough to make me think it is a "thing". Any ideas?
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2answers
132 views

Minimum ampacity for circuits in a home from 1964

I’m attempting to fact-check a seemingly very dubious claim from my landlord, but I’m having a great deal of trouble finding useful information on older electrical codes, especially in a form that I ...
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1answer
108 views

What kind of appliance(s) used to be here? [closed]

I'm remodeling a room in a fairly old house (~100 yrs), and I discovered a capped-off gas pipe behind some framing+drywall that had been hastily installed whenever this room had been converted into a ...
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2answers
372 views

Adapting 3/4 gas outlet to 1/2" appliance?

One of these things is not like the other. That's a 3/4 gas outlet and a gas dryer with a 1/2" fitting. What's the best approach to making them connect? The dryer is old so I'm a bit leery of trying ...
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3answers
683 views

What hard material is behind the plaster on interior walls in my 1920s apartment?

I moved into an old (c. 1920s) rental apartment building in the northeastern US (Philadelphia) and would like to hang pictures and secure some furniture. I tried putting nails in several places ...
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0answers
122 views

bleeding radiator without access to the bleeder valve

I've got a cast iron radiator where the end with the bleeder valve is shoved up against a wall. Is there any other way to bleed a radiator? Supply and return pipes are at top and bottom of the ...
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2answers
121 views

If I want to expose the beams of my ceiling, is it sufficient to just install roofing insulation?

I own a house built in the 1930s. I live in San Francisco in the Bayview district where it’s fairly sunny similarly to the Mission District. This house is all lath and plaster and because of which I ...
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1answer
310 views

I need to know how to replace a water damaged wood rotten stud in a wall

I just bought a house built in 1930. The previous owners had a crack in the shower. I need to know how to replace the stud that holds up that wall as it is now rotten from water damage. The drywall is ...
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3answers
84 views

Dog-friendly mouse hunting strategies after a year of using standard products?

TL;DR: When commercial products have been ineffective or proven dog-unfriendly, what are some other mouse-catching strategies when the mice hide in baseboard heaters and have learned to avoid most ...
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1answer
108 views

Sagging Floors and loose floorboards

My house is about 118 years old and I can tell from all around the house that there seems to be a sagging on my floors in one specific area. This sagging is obvious in the first and second floor. Now ...
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0answers
309 views

Can I ground a new light to an old metal box via a switch yoke?

All of my switches are installed in old metal boxes with no threaded ground screw holes. The boxes are wired using old cloth BX with no ground wire(grounded via casing). Some of the BX wire ...
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1answer
259 views

How do I fix metal clad wood casement windows that won't close?

I recently purchased a house that built in 1937. I believe the windows are original, and they are all casement windows. I'm not sure of the correct term, but the windows are clad in metal with a slot, ...
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2answers
130 views

metal looking ball dust in attic, dangerous?

I was installing insulation in our attic. On the beams, there was this metal looking ball dust. Any clue what it is? Was exposed to by breathing it breifly, then skin contact for a few hours. I have ...
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1answer
777 views

Removing old electrical box in ceiling

I have hit an obstacle in my quest to replace my light fixture. The current electrical box in the ceiling is a very old type as shown in the picture I attached. How does one go about removing this? ...
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1answer
72 views

Ceiling fan wiring

How do I wire a new ceiling fan to the wiring in the picture?
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2answers
357 views

Leveling a sinking 1st floor addition that is about 4' off the ground [closed]

First time home buyer looking for good advice about possibly raising a sunken 2 room addition ourselves. Wood frame, the sill is in good shape no rotting. No warping or "cupping" of the rooms. The ...
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1answer
2k views

How to get rid of old house smell?

Our house is pretty old. It had an old house smell when we bought it. It's not a mold smell, not a sewer, not cat urine. It's a smell of old wooden furniture or books. The house has hardwood floors ...
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2answers
2k views

What is this metal bar in my 1950s electrical box?

I recently bought a house and am in the process of replacing all the ungrounded outlets with GFCI outlets. I was able to install one correctly in a bedroom, but there are two others that I wasn't able ...
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1answer
175 views

How to repair integrated window screens from a 1930s house?

I'm purchasing a house built in 1937. All the windows and fixtures are original. A fair number of the windows have an integrated screen that pulls down from the top of the window. The tracks are ...
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5answers
10k views

What should be done before using a fireplace that has not been used in decades?

We are moving into a house with a fire-place. The current tenants (friends of ours), have been living there just short of 2 decades, and have never used it once. The house is about 90 years old, so it ...