5 Fast Fixes 4 Labor Day

Labor Day weekend is often an opportunity for homeowners to do some home improvements and/or adjustments to their homes. It’s also the beginning of college football (Go Bucks!).
Here are some quick fixes and serets to save you time and probably some money. To make it easy for you, I’ve highlighted any materials that you may need.

Cracking Plaster

If you’ve got an old house with plaster walls, you know how hard it is to get rid of stress cracks. And they’ll eventally resurface. The trick is to bridge the gaps with fiberglass tape. Steps:

1-Apply a thin layer of setting compound to the crack, preferably a powdered, mix-with-water variety. Use a wide putty knife or trowel.
2-Press the fiberglass tape into the wet compound and apply more compound over it.
3-Spread or “feather” the compound out on each side of the crack so that it blends in with the rest of the wall.
4-Oce it’s dry, sand (with sandpaper) it smooth to match the existing finish (use that leftover paint in your basement or garge to match the colors but be sure to stir it up good first).

Scuffed Up Hardwood Floors

Get some extra-fine stell wood (grade 000) and rub the scuffs ever so lightly. You’ll be surprised what a gleaming, like-new floor you have when you’re done!

Squeaky Garage Doors

Don’t use WD-40 or grease but DO lubricate the metal parts. Try a few drops of an all-purpose lubricant, such as 3-in-One oil. Use this on rollers, hinges, torsion spring (the big spring that help lift the door), and bearings alongside the door. Keep the tracks clean and dry so the rollers won’t drag. If the problem still isn’t fixed, disconnect the door from the opener and operate by hand to see whether the noises are coming from the door or the moving parts inside the opener motor. Once you’ve pinpointed the source, lubricate.

Loose Door Hinges
The most likely problem is not the screw itself but that the screw has torn through the wood that’s holding it in place. Once you’ve determined which hinge is loose, repair the wood. Steps:
1-Prop the door open all the way and remove the screws from the loose side of the malfunctioning hinge.
2-Use a drill to round out the hole where each screw had been.
3-Get a wooden dowel of the same diameter as the drill bit you used.
4-Slide the dowel into the hole to measure how deep into the wood it will go and mark it with a pencil.
5-Saw it off at the line you drew, then slather the dowel with yellow carpenters glue and slide back into the hold you drilled.
6-Let the glue dry, then reinstall the hinges.

Note:You can use wooden toothpicks in place of the dowel. Just dip them in the glue one at a time. Once they’re dry, use a utility knife to cut them flush with the door/frame and

Cracks Around Wood Trim

Whether it’s a windowsill, door casing, or crown molding, movement due to seasonal temperature changes are going to happen…which creates cracking.
Fill the gap with caulk and then touch up with paint. The secret? Look for acrylic latex siliconized caulk (and a caulk gun if you don’t have one). Unlike latex caulk, which is not flexible and silicone caulk that won’t hold paint, this caulk (a fairly new addition to the caulking family) is both flexible and paint absorbent. What to do:

1-Cut off just the very tip of the caulk nozzle, giving the thinnest bead possible.
2-After applying a small amount, wipe the surface with a damp cloth leaving just a think layer of caulk.
3-Let the caulk dry then repeat.
4-Once it’s dry, paint it to match and you’re done.

Source: Readers Digest Book “Five Minute Fixes”
I make no warranties or representations about the effectiveness of these fixes.

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