A Little DIY Can Save a Lot of Money: Easy Home Maintenance Fixes
Home ownership is a costly proposition, what with mortgage payments (if you decide to finance the purchase, which Watson International does not typically recommend), property taxes, homeowners association dues, and maintenance and upkeep. The costs add up quickly. You may be seeking ways to defray mounting expenses, especially if yours is an older property. The more you can do to minimize costs, the better off you’ll be in the long run and in the foreseeable future as well. Fortunately, there are plenty of small-scale fixes that you can tackle with ease.
Holes and drawer handles
Say you’re in a hurry and you want to find something in that one kitchen drawer that seems to hold everything. You yank a bit too hard on the handle which cracks, bends, or just comes loose. You could get out the Super Glue and attempt the painstaking job of putting it back together. Or, you could choose the route that won’t require another quick fix in a couple weeks when it happens again.
Why not buy a new handle at the corner hardware store? Just pop out the drawer, and with the turn of a couple of screws, you’ve got yourself a nice shiny new drawer handle. Fortunately, it’s not an expense that’s going to put your summer vacation at risk.
Those annoying holes that appear in your drywall, usually in the vicinity of a door and doorknob, are among the most common small maintenance tasks and also one of the easiest to repair. Find yourself a little self-adhesive drywall patch mesh, at least twice the size of the hole you’re repairing, with about an inch extra on each side. Press the piece in place over the hole making sure the edges are in solid contact with the wall all around the hole. Put a layer of joint compound over the mesh with a compound blade, gently pushing on the mesh to ensure the holes are filled with no bubbles.
After about 24 hours, sand the first layer down and apply another one. Repeat the same procedure after another 24 hours. If it still doesn’t look quite right, add more joint compound. Then, install one of those little spring bumpers at the bottom of the wall to make sure it doesn’t happen again.
Cracks in molding are usually caused by fluctuations in humidity. Fortunately, this small home repair is also an easy one. You can try using spackling to create an invisible seam, though you’ll likely have to do it again once the wood expands and contracts again in response to changes in atmospheric conditions. Instead, try a more flexible material, such as siliconized latex caulking, and forget about it.
Filters are your friends
When you hear your HVAC unit switch on at night, do you sometimes wonder how many more years of service it’ll provide? If you make liberal use of air filters, you can delay the inevitable by a few years and keep breathing healthy air. You can find the right size at most big retailers or have them shipped directly to you.
Does that mysterious little mechanism in your kitchen sink concern you? If yours is in need of a little cleaning, put some lemon and vinegar in an ice cube tray, and when it freezes, simply dump the vinegar “rocks” down the disposal and flick the switch. Vinegar’s potent cleaning properties will freshen things up down there, the lemon will make it smell nice, and the hardness of the cubes will help sharpen the blades a bit.
When to call the pros
Some home projects just aren’t meant to be completed without a professional. For instance, if an appliance isn’t functioning properly anymore, you’ll want to hire an expert. This way, the job can be done safely and efficiently, and you’ll avoid the need to spend more money on a replacement. Searching for an appliance repair company in NYC can seem daunting, but thanks to websites like Angi, it can actually be quite simple. They provide lists of highly-rated companies to help you narrow your search more quickly. The listings also indicate any awards the companies have earned. Focusing on these key points will guide you toward making a wise decision.
Some home repairs are more so meant to be “DIY jobs.” DIY means you’re saving money both now and later, and it offers the satisfaction of making you feel like a bona fide handyperson. However, it is important to know when to call in a pro — after all, when it comes to maintenance and repairs, safety should be the highest priority.
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Author: Linda Chase of Ablehire