Questions tagged [old-house]

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1answer
409 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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3answers
70 views

toilet troubles

I have a brass tube for water coming into a toilet in my very old farmhouse. The shut off valve failed and I had to cut the tube and am now trying to fix it... to no avail. We are three days without ...
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5answers
228 views

Natural ant/insect repellent [closed]

Please suggest some natural ant/insect repellent that I can use to get rid of the ants/ticks/insects. I started using clorox but I would prefer something natural. Thank you so much
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2answers
109 views

Is this mold in my bathroom?

Moved into a new house and the bathroom has a foul odour and i suspect it has something to do with he black stuff all over the place. Could it be mold?
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2answers
2k views

Is this Radiator handle/valve a replaceable part? Do I need to drain the system first?

Perhaps a stupid question... The ON / OFF valve on one of my 1900s radiators does not turn. Pictures below. The radiator is in a permanent "hot" state. Is the "valve" (handle and "small nut") ...
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2answers
155 views

Unable to hang things in certain walls

We just bought a house that was built in 1941. The bathroom doesn't have a toilet paper roll holder, so my husband tried to install one. In 4 different areas of the wall he hit something solid and our ...
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2answers
162 views

Is there an easy way to track where switches go/do?

My Aunt's house is a Frankenstein's Monster. Her late Husband made a number of unique wiring modifications. previous post about the her house: Question on toilet mounting; No visible bolts? 1st, ...
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1answer
84 views

What should be done to check the capacity of a 100+ year old wooden floor joist?

Short version A 7.5cm x 20cm wooden floor joist from an apartment constructed in 1906 in Rotterdam, the Netherlands will be subjected to an increased load. The type of loading the floor joist will ...
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2answers
111 views

Musty Smell in slab and block house

As my title states, I have a house that is on a slab and the exterior and most interior walls are block and covered with plaster. Since we bought the house we have noticed a musty smell that we ...
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1answer
232 views

Ceiling fan mounting, old home, worried I did it wrong

This weekend, I replaced a non-functioning ceiling fan in our home with a new one. The home is over 100 years old. When I replaced the fan, I found what is pictured in the attached image. It seems to ...
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1answer
74 views

What can be done to mitigate risk when buying a very old home? [closed]

Im looking to buy a house and I have found a house that I really like and want to buy. There are a couple issues though. While the house cosmetically looks awesome because it has been entirely ...
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1answer
1k 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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2answers
198 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
1k views

What can I use to back a door jamb strike plate with no framing behind?

So I'm trying to replace the original entrance handleset door lock from my almost 100 year old house and after removing the old lock and patching up the holes. I looked inside the door jamb and ...
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1answer
3k views

Alternatives to conventional weep screed, for stucco to the ground homes?

I live in one of millions of older homes that have stucco applied right to the ground, like so: There's really no way to retrofit a conventional weep screed here. Lowering grade is not feasible ...
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1answer
89 views

Fixing a curtain rail to old brick wall

I am trying to fix a curtain rail in a dormer window. The problem is that the internal wall is brick with lime mortar. Many of the bricks are very poor quality and crumble when drilled. ...
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2answers
740 views

How should I go about insulating a 1920's stucco house in LA?

I own a two story, 3200 Sq ft house in Los Angeles. The exterior is stucco and the walls are lathe and plaster. A year ago we had some water damage after a rain storm. When the contractor demo'd ...
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1answer
2k views

Pre-made rain cap for plumbing vent? (Preventing rust-through of galvanized pipe in the walls)

Are pre-made rain caps made for plumbing waste vents? My house was built 1938 with galvanized DWV pipes which have a series of elbows before reaching the roof. All such elbows retain a certain amount ...
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1answer
4k views

Is it possible to fix bowed baseboards?

I have an old house which probably dates back to 1920s or so. Most walls are plaster and the outside walls are brick. Tenants in the 80s or 90s did not take good care of it. It was rehabbed, quickly ...
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0answers
51 views

In old houses is it normal to use multi wire wiring bundles out of the breaker box?

I have an old house, ca 1928. A lot of the wiring is old. A lot has been replaced over the years. I'm not an electrician but I am very comfortable doing wiring. But I don't have the experience of an ...
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2answers
82 views

How do you wire and replace an old bathroom vanity light fixture

I am replacing a bathroom light fixture in an old condo built in the 70s. There is armored cable coming into the fixture from the wall. From my understanding is that I need to do these steps, 1) ...
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1answer
78 views

Is this flowerpot insert made from asbestos?

I own three flowerpots with strange white inserts. I haven't bought them in fact they were already part of the 1970 built house when I moved in. I've heard of asbestos flowerpots but couldn't find ...
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0answers
32 views

Old-style ceiling vent in DC rowhouse, top-floor bathroom

I'm looking to recreate the original mechanism for opening and closing the ceiling "window-frame" vent in the topfloor bathroom of my 1938 Wash DC rowhouse. Problem is, I have no friggin' idea what ...
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0answers
34 views

Motion sensor light fail on this old house

My old home has a mixture of knob and tube, 2-wire, and 3-wire (w/ ground). I replaced an incandescent floodlight with a motion sensing, LED light. The circuit also has another switch in the garage, a ...
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0answers
356 views

How to repair a brass toilet flange connected to a lead pipe

I went to replace a toilet recently and I found the following situation (images below): The toilet flange was brass and connected to a lead pipe The brass flange had a crack in it, possibly because A ...
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0answers
138 views

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
1k 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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0answers
51 views

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
59 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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0answers
60 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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0answers
189 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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0answers
380 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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4answers
3k views

How to install an outdoor outlet in new stucco (not retrofit) — with details done right

Previous questions pertain to adding an outdoor electrical box to old stucco (How do I install electrical through existing stucco (e.g. "old work") ). What are the ways it's done on a wall ...
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3answers
150 views

What is the best way to fix broken OLD plaster in a very old house? [closed]

I've recently bought a house which was built in the 1900s. The entire plaster walls are covered with wallpapers. First time home buyer mistake, our first project is to remove the wallpaper and paint ...
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1answer
62 views

Why did my plaster walls stop half inch above floor and expose room to wall cavity?

My home was built in the 1930s. I recently pulled up my carpet to get it replaced. When I did this, I noticed that the plaster walls stopped half an inch above the hardwood floor. It looked very ...
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1answer
149 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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3answers
98 views

Is it really a good idea to buy an old house which needs some rework? [closed]

Long ago I read somewhere that it is best to buy houses that need some amount of rework rather than those in tip-top condition. The reasons given were: There is less competition from other buyers so ...
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3answers
188 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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1answer
443 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
201 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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2answers
88 views

ideas for using a closed stair

This is a 300 years old building split into multiple apartments in the middle of Lisbon. When doing some cleaning (removing some cover tables), what supposed to be a "small" cubicle/closet turns out ...
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1answer
76 views

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

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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1answer
459 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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2answers
980 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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1answer
258 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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2answers
1k 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
101 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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2answers
623 views

How can I rearrange this plumbing to drain correctly?

So here's some plumbing in my house (not done by me): This was before I sealed everything up behind drywall. The drain is actually used for a Cat Genie, our laundry is in another room. Now we're ...
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2answers
42 views

When removing siding with a mildew smell, and then replacing it, should I wrap the house in something airtight first?

I have a home built in the late 1960s in Massachusetts. The prior owner covered the house with vinyl, which was not done with care. Water gets behind the vinyl. The cedar wood clapboard and trim is ...
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1answer
76 views

Who manufactured this shower diverter valve?

I am replacing the diverter valve in a 1963 residential shower and wondering if anyone knows the make and model from the maker's marks on this hardware? I see imprinted: P-P, C.W., and 18. The ...