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DIY Home Improvement Thread..

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sounds like you've got your work cut out for you, PCS!

Do they sell hose attachment thingies that you can use to spray/wash the outside of your windows?

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I hear ya PCS,

my list just keeps growing and I bought a "move-in" ready house

-power wash siding

-dominate hornets and wasps (check)

-landscaping

-take bathroom vents through the roof

-pave driveway (currently crushed stone)

The seller was a hack. From far away, to my untrained eye as a first-time buyer, I missed a lot of his hack-ness. Baseboards don't come all the way to the wall, closet handles are jury rigged, painted over painters tape and didn't bother removing or redoing, grout work is very sloppy, hardwood floors stop shy under overhangs of lower cabinets, etc, etc. etc.

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The joys of home owning. :silly: "Move in" is apparently very,very subjective. I've got two broken bifold closet doors to add to the list as well as replacing some very banged up blinds. Oh There's also vacuuming under all the cabinets in the garage,(all kinds of webs and such there),as well as a good paint job. :)

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Quick question: 2 days ago I noticed that the water pressure in the shower that I use has decreased significantly. Before I actually look into it, do any of you think that it could be something as simple as needing a new showerhead? The house is a little old (built in '82).

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Quick question: 2 days ago I noticed that the water pressure in the shower that I use has decreased significantly. Before I actually look into it, do any of you think that it could be something as simple as needing a new showerhead? The house is a little old (built in '82).

Could just be clogged. Unscre shower head, pull out screen and remove debris. Also soak showerhead in vinegar overnight

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Check your tank as well. We lost water pressure a few years ago, the tank had a hole in it and was spraying water everywhere.

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If it's just the shower where you notice the low pressure,then yeah it's more than likely the shower head.

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Also of you want to go full scale environmental terrorist you can take the water saver washer out of your showerhead.

Remember hotel shower heads from the 1980s? It will be like that :D

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Also of you want to go full scale environmental terrorist you can take the water saver washer out of your showerhead.

First thing I do with any shower head I install in my house.

Can't have your hair looking like this!

kramershowerhead.jpg?w=300&h=202

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help me dang it.... :(

How do you guys clean the outsides of your windows around the house? our windows do not fold inwards for easy cleaning like some do...

Edited by Chew

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If it's just the shower where you notice the low pressure,then yeah it's more than likely the shower head.

About 12-14 months after we moved into our new home in we noticed lower water pressure at the sinks and shower. So I unscrewed and checked the bathroom sink & shower head. Lo and behold they were clogged with little white pieces of plastic. So I went around to every sink & shower head to clean each one. In checking around to find out the source of the problem I learned the hot water tank had a known issue. Specifically, the dip tube inside the tank (white plastic) was breaking apart. The white plastic pieces I was finding in the sink/shower were pieces of the dip tube. The tube in the tank is actually the intake tube the hot water tank uses to suck in the water to then send to the faucet. Anyway, a recall had been issued for many, many brands of hot water heaters. But the amount of money they were giving didn't come close to paying for a new replacement hot water tank. I finally replaced it a couple of years ago when the Federal government had the tax incentives to replace hot water tanks, etc.

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Quick question: 2 days ago I noticed that the water pressure in the shower that I use has decreased significantly. Before I actually look into it, do any of you think that it could be something as simple as needing a new showerhead? The house is a little old (built in '82).
Could just be clogged. Unscre shower head, pull out screen and remove debris. Also soak showerhead in vinegar overnight

Definitely remove shower head and check for two things, a re-stricter for water saving and debris. Then look at the actual pours where the water comes out, if you see white crust or film that is calcium build up from hard water. We get that a lot in Florida and it slows pressure, also happens on the laundry supply hose with a screen that prevents large particles from getting to the pump. All faucets, showers and the laundry supplies should be cleaned out six to twelve months. If your shower head or the faucet has calcium or other hard water build up soak it in white vinegar over night and magic should occur.

---------- Post added August-3rd-2012 at 03:51 PM ----------

About 12-14 months after we moved into our new home in we noticed lower water pressure at the sinks and shower. So I unscrewed and checked the bathroom sink & shower head. Lo and behold they were clogged with little white pieces of plastic. So I went around to every sink & shower head to clean each one. In checking around to find out the source of the problem I learned the hot water tank had a known issue. Specifically, the dip tube inside the tank (white plastic) was breaking apart. The white plastic pieces I was finding in the sink/shower were pieces of the dip tube. The tube in the tank is actually the intake tube the hot water tank uses to suck in the water to then send to the faucet. Anyway, a recall had been issued for many, many brands of hot water heaters. But the amount of money they were giving didn't come close to paying for a new replacement hot water tank. I finally replaced it a couple of years ago when the Federal government had the tax incentives to replace hot water tanks, etc.

Also a great idea and one that does not get done nearly enough is back washing the water heater out. Should be done yearly. You turn off the supply to the water heater and attach a hose at the bottom. Drain, or attempt to drain the WH completely. I say this because many times it stops draining as the particles all get caught up in the drain. Have a supply spigot ready and within reach of the hose to back flow water in for a few minutes and run again, and again until you no longer see any particles. I was amazed at how much was in there and can only imagine the affect on the WH ability to heat the water. Recovery time is key for a water heaters efficiency. This job is a pain at first but once you have done it and figured out the particulars of your home and getting the draining down it is not a big deal and I do it every year. I have a whole house filter and I still get a lot of sentiment in the heads, faucets and water heater.

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Good thing I said if it was just the shower head. Keep in mind too that if you do find build up of sediments around the shower head or other fixtures,(there are other more obvious spots of hard water build up),then that is a wonderful reminder of the old water tank drainage thing,(one of the most obvious as in DUH,but overlooked maintenance items in many households).

Check building and re-screening window screens off the list on the house along with repaired sprinkler heads off the list,(few minor tune ups but they're done). Next up....**** there's so much to do I'll just throw a dart at the list.;)

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we're starting a major project as soon as the weather clears. The roof of our single story rancher is 4 - sided (can't remember the term.) we are taking the roof off, putting a 9-12 pitch roof on and putting 2 bedrooms and a bathroom on top of our existing house. this isn't really diy, as my neighbor is contractor / handyman and is heading it up...but i'll be heavily involved. the plan was to have it under the new roof by thanksgiving...but permits are a ***** and now we're waiting until spring. sucks because i jumped the gun in anticipation and took all the gutter, fascia and soffit off of the house...

ok, so this has been quite a journey...and i'm nowhere near done.

it's been significantly more time and money than anticipated, but we are getting very close to being finished on the outside. just a bit more fascia, then soffit and siding. the sub-flooring upstairs is about 1/2 way finished.

the first pic is before we started.

the 2nd pic is during the operation. note the newly built roof, the section with no roof, and the section with old roof.

the 3rd pic is after we finished framing the roof.

the gable-end walls have been built and closed in. i have gutters as of 2 days ago. will post that pic soon.

[ATTACH]47116[/ATTACH]

Edited by Major Harris

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thanks zoony. i have a lot more pics but those kind of sum it up. we also extended the front porch roof so it spans the entire front (used to go about 2/3).

this has been the biggest roller coaster ever. i honestly didn't realize what i was getting into. it's exciting to be close to being done on the outside.

and i can't believe i forgot to throw the "es thank you" out to zoony, who hooked me up with a good deal on several tools that have spent a lot of time on this job.

Edited by Major Harris

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Best way to kill an in-ground yellow jacket nest?

I've tried spray and spray foam and the next day they keep coming. Off the internets, I read about sealing the entrance with a bowl which I'm trying today. I saw a bunch of them trying to get out this morning when I left for work, not sure of the efficacy.

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Best way to kill an in-ground yellow jacket nest?

I've tried spray and spray foam and the next day they keep coming. Off the internets, I read about sealing the entrance with a bowl which I'm trying today. I saw a bunch of them trying to get out this morning when I left for work, not sure of the efficacy.

Have you tried gas and a match? That's probably what I'd do. Wait until nighttime when they've all returned to the nest

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spray can of starting fluid(ether) and a match is more impressive

don't try this in a brick wall :silly:

Edited by twa

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Now that was a re-model. But at leas the light at the end of the tunnel can be seen.

As for here. The sprinkler project is just about done. That will leave time for the garage. Lot's of building going on there including some hang from the ceiling shelves that I'll hopefully have up some time over the weekend. Fall will be under eave and roof vent time,(way too hot to try that now,even though that's the best reason to have them).

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Okay carpenters of ES, I need some help....

I bought custom blinds for some windows in my kitchen. Unfortunately, I'm a moron and didn't measure all the way at the top of the window frames. One of the blinds is about 1/2 inch too big for the top of the frame... it fits perfectly in the middle of the frame! Apparently frames aren't the same size all the way down... who knew? Anyway, is there a way I can shave the top of the frame a bit to make the blinds fit? Or am I screwed?

Cutting the blinds is not an option, they are cellular shades.

Edited by SloppyOneXXVI

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Have you tried gas and a match? That's probably what I'd do. Wait until nighttime when they've all returned to the nest

Well, I sealed the entrance with a plastic bin and monitored it for a week. Day 1, I could see them actively buzzing inside the bin and a few seemed to have gotten out and were buzzing about. I was worried they would dig an exit tunnel or burrow underneath the bin between gaps in the grass and dirt, but they didn't. Yesterday was a week and I finally took the bin off, a little of making sure they were dead and gone (had not seen any activity for a week) and a little of hadn't really gotten around to go back there, and there were about 200 dead yellow jackets!! My neighbor came over and we were talking over the conquest when the ground underneath his boot gave a little. He picked at the ground and exposed the nest and saw yjs crawling down there but they were lethargic and looked to be juveniles. A couple flew out and tried to attack but they were dealt with and there was no more visible activity. I went back and gave it another good spray of foam into the exposed nest, so I think they're done done.

Next time, I'd do the pesticide dust, because while it doesn't kill on contact they will track it back into the nest and kill others, larvae and essentially poison the nest. Then I'd hit the entrance with foam and seal the entrance. If it's a really virulent hive, I'd go nuclear and hit it with the gasoline but I hated killing the grass in that area.

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you won't be worrying about those anymore. Go west young man!

---------- Post added August-14th-2012 at 12:12 PM ----------

Yeah it is. Came with place actually. I first saw it,it was :rubeyes:

As for the countertops.....

*

Figures somone would notice. :silly: Came with the place. Like the floor. :doh:

No need to worry about those any longer, go west young man. :ols:

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Well, I finally decided to re-dip my toe into home improvements, even though the last thing I did was furniture restoration, and not really a "home improvement" so to speak. Last night's project? Kitchen faucet replacement, which became a project when my wife turned on the water and the faucet handle snapped off. I knew it was old, but holy hell....

Anyway, like all people who are relatively new to this sort of thing, I figured this would be an easy fix. Went to the store, purchased a faucet for four holes (we have a sprayer) and some plumbers putty. I opened it, and the first direction is this massive diagram of nuts, bolts, and screws being put together, but apparently this was FYI for part replacement because the faucet came pre-assembled. Direction two was shut off the water. Direction three was a list of tools I would need. Direction four was "choose with sprayer or without sprayer installation." If without, go to #5. If with, go to #7.

Holy ****!! I was already up to step seven (out of nine) and all I had to do was shut off the water and collect my tools. This was easy!

Well, maybe not, as step seven was where I began being required to actually do stuff. First, I had to unscrew two plastic cap things (you can tell me DIY vocabulary is limited) but they had been there for so long, and sealed with putty for some reason, that they wouldn't budge. I had to work a small hammer up in the space and give them a few medium taps to loosen them, along with a shower of rust and corrosion. And while I'm thinking about it, who the **** designed these under sink spaces? You have to be a damn midget to do anything under there comfortably.

Anyway, with those off, the next step was disconnecting the hoses. The hot water one came off with some work, then promptly leaked the remaining water it had all over the towel I had put down, soaking it. New towel. The cold water hose...no such luck. It is secured up near the access hole with a large hexagonal nut which won't budge. My adjustable wrench is to small to fit over it. My much larger wrench I can't fit up in the area, thanks to the sink and garbage disposal, or get any torque. So after trying to loosen it by hand, then by hand with a towel, then with a big wrench that wouldn't fit, then with pliers of all things, I managed to make no progress unless you count sore hands and a nagging back.

Instead, I went to the other end of the hose and loosened a much smaller and more accessible nut, breaking whatever seal was there, because when I refastened it and tested the water line, water sprayed everywhere. I would up yanking the hose out of the pipe at that end instead of bothering with the large nut anymore. All that was left was to loosen the sprayer. Well, this should have been easier, but due to it's positioning against the back wall and behind the hot/cold water connections, I couldn't really get to it, and my hands were getting torn up, so we cut the sprayer hose in half with a pair of scissors, which is okay, because the new one comes with its own sprayer hose. Success, after some jimmying, we were able to pull the entire faucet off of the sink, exposing some pretty hideous looking stuff, and remove the rest of the sprayer as well.

That was it for the night. We now have a kitchen sink with three holes, a rusty pool that needs to be cleaned along the back, and a new faucet waiting to be installed. I need to go back to the store for a replacement cold water hose and the corresponding nuts to hopefully avoid leaks, but otherwise, I think this might turn out alright. Hopefully, there will be positive updates tonight/tomorrow.

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