36 votes

How do I drywall when the studs are not flush?

The difference appears to be about 1/4" to 3/8". If so, I'd fur it out with some 1/4" plywood strips or some 3/8" lath strips.
  • 60.4k
25 votes
Accepted

Do new wire runs in an existing ceiling need to be stapled down?

If you are not removing more drywall than needed for the new recessed lights, then no per 334.30(B)(1) (assuming you are using NM cable). There are similar clauses for other flexible cable assemblies (...
23 votes
Accepted

What is the purpose of this joint in my wall stud?

Those are called "finger jointed studs". These joints are weaker than regular 2x4 or 2x6. I do a lot of woodworking and when gluing boards together (for like a table top) the glue joints ...
18 votes

Installing a 48" vanity between two walls that are 51" apart. How can I cover the 1.5" gaps on the cabinet marble top and the cabinet sides?

This is a free standing vanity. It is not made to finish against a wall. The cabinet part does not lend itself to adding what we call "fillers" as a standard vanity cabinet would. The open ...
  • 3,747
15 votes

Closet Wall, is it Load Bearing?

The framing above the pantry door is not load bearing. The doorway to the left of the pantry in the middle picture is load bearing. You can tell by the solid header.
  • 698
14 votes

How can I seal a gap between floor joist boxes and foundation?

This is a perfect scenario for spray foam, which both seals against airflow and adds insulation value. Pick up a couple cans and seal all such joints, then overlay fiberglass batts that match or ...
  • 109k
11 votes

Can new wall go over tile floor?

The "correct" way to do it, is to remove or cut the tile where the wall will go. Whether or not you want to do that, is up to your personal preference.
  • 129k
11 votes

How can I seal a gap between floor joist boxes and foundation?

Isherwood is right on the approach - spray foam or caulk - or both (caulk first). I however want to add... If I had a crack this big I would block it off with a 2x4 or even 1x's. This is mouse ...
  • 46.4k
10 votes

What is the purpose of this joint in my wall stud?

That is a join between two bits of timber. The ends are machine cut and glued.
  • 22.3k
10 votes

What should I do about this vanity that won't sit tight to the wall due to trim molding?

If that leg can be unscrewed and moved over 1/2 inch, that would be my first choice. If not, then I'd get a coping saw and cut the leg to fit the trim.
  • 60.4k
9 votes

Wood floor protection during demolition of roof

It would be very worth investing in at least two layers of protection. I'd start with something that will accommodate dust and debris. It should seal against them, but it should also cushion them if ...
  • 109k
9 votes

Do new wire runs in an existing ceiling need to be stapled down?

Electricians "fish" wires through existing homes by the thousands every day without stapling. Staple if you can (every 4' in attics, within 12" of all boxes), and don't if you can't. Use some common ...
  • 109k
9 votes

Do new wire runs in an existing ceiling need to be stapled down?

In addition to good answers by @statuephemism and @isherwood, it's worth mentioning why you might want to staple and why in your case it probably doesn't matter. First reason to staple is to keep ...
  • 784
9 votes

What adhesive is typically used to "glue" a porcelain under-counter sink to a stone countertop

Most likely it's silicone. You should be able to cut it with a razor/knife to free the sink and then scrape/peel it off completely once the sink is out of the way.
  • 3,578
8 votes
Accepted

What's the recommended order for completing these bathroom remodel tasks?

I have done quite a few bathrooms from start to finish. You don't always have to do things in a certain order but I can tell you generally how to do things the easiest. You start with your shower ...
  • 46.4k
8 votes

Previous owner didn't get permits for remodel, am I now liable?

Sorry, I am going to have to disagree with some of the above posters. It all comes down to the interpretation of due diligence. Hypothetically, if you bought the place and know that work was done ...
8 votes

How do I know if a roofing company is using subcontractors?

First, if you have a contract with someone, and a question/suspicion arises about the work specified in that contract, you should just ask the person you are contracting with, rather than go online ...
  • 962
8 votes

Installing a 48" vanity between two walls that are 51" apart. How can I cover the 1.5" gaps on the cabinet marble top and the cabinet sides?

I think I might try pushing the cabinet all the way to the left, leaving a gap of about 3" on the right. Then mount a towel bar all the way across, maybe 12" above the countertop or so. Then ...
  • 199
7 votes
Accepted

Is it a good idea to separate switch for recess lights and chandelier in living room?

It is totally normal to install two groups of lights in one room with separate switches. If you do that then you also have the option to install, now or at a later time, a dimmer and/or timer on each ...
6 votes
Accepted

Can I demo plaster walls but somehow keep the window casing?

One of the main purposes of moldings, such as the trim around doors and windows (called casings), is to act as a barrier and seal to wind and water intrusion. Moldings on wall between vertical boards, ...
  • 33.2k
6 votes

Previous owner didn't get permits for remodel, am I now liable?

You can pull a homeowner permit for fairly cheap ($70 in CO) and that'll get a city inspector to come and check things out. You won't be held liable for the work done, but will be excepted to bring it ...
  • 161
6 votes

Found Lath and Plaster wall under remodel drywall. Is it restorable?

The closeup looks like cement based backer board used to hold tile in wet/damp locations. If so, that is not original. It would be very hard to restore to lathe/plaster throughout, especially if ...
  • 33.2k
6 votes
Accepted

How can I fit a board to another that isn't straight?

The technique I've used most often is called "scribing". The word simply means "writing" or "tracing", but here's how it goes. Set your board to be fitted in place. I typically tilt it so that I ...
  • 109k
6 votes

What is the purpose of this joint in my wall stud?

As others have said, this is "finger jointed" lumber. The quality of such lumber varies from quite good to kind of piddlin' poor. The purpose of the joints is to allow knots and other bad ...
  • 1,291
6 votes

Is this kitchen wall parallel with the joists load-bearing?

Since that wall runs parallel to the joists above it is not a load bearing wall. That said, I always recommend that anytime you are going to remove any wall that could be a supporting wall that you ...
  • 12.2k
6 votes

Best saw to notch a tricky floor joist

Before you get wrapped up in "notch", have you considered drilling a hole? A long(ish) bit, either auger or spade, will go a good long ways, which makes it easy to deal with tight spaces. ...
  • 1,347
6 votes
Accepted

Are these large horizontal wood planks structural in my 1900s home?

It is possible that those planks were purposely added for sheer strength. If you live in a location with high winds and storms then those planks provide lateral resistance against those forces. If ...
  • 12.3k
5 votes
Accepted

Is a sandwiched beam made out of 2x4s laid flat a suitable for a 15' span that doesn't carry a load?

If you put a beam across the room you'll feel bad every time you look at it. if you have a flat ceiling, you'll feel proud. Use joist hangers to put some 2x4s between the ceiling joists so that they ...
  • 15k
5 votes

Accidental plumbing leak. How bad is this? What should I have my contractor do?

I'd give the contractor a chance to fix things. Your house isn't going to collapse into mold and mush over one event, but you do want to be sure that things are thoroughly dry and that there's no ...
  • 109k
5 votes
Accepted

Adding another outlet in bathroom for bidet?

Likely far easier to go down the wall and into the cabinet, across the back of the cabinet and either into the wall to a receptacle, or you could even install a receptacle into the side of the cabinet....

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