Monday, September 15, 2014

Easy home repairs you can do on your own

Hold off on the repairman, or the plumber. Go DIY. These three quick fixes need no professional: only your two hands and a couple of tools.

Leaky pipes
Old, worn washers and loose or broken fittings are usually the culprit behind the common leaky pipe. To start with, shut off the water in your house. Place a bucket under the pipe to catch the runaway water. Unscrew the compression fittings - also called compression nuts - and take out the pipe. Replace the washer and reassemble the pipe and fittings back in. Turn the water back on and check to make sure that the leak’s been resolved.

Unclogging a toilet
Use a toilet plunger. Fill the bowl with enough water to submerge the end of the plunger, and with several thrusts, the clog should be well cleared in no time. For trickier, tougher clogs, use a toilet augur. It’s a specialized tool with a hand crank, a long handle and a helical bit at the end that can break through or retrieve any obstructions. Simply reach into the bowl with the auger until the end bit hits the clog. Turn the crank. Pull the clog out or break it with the auger until it’s gone.

Replacing a light switch
Turn off the electricity or the circuit breaker in your home. Using a flathead screwdriver, remove the faceplate over the switch. Use a phillips head screwdriver to take the switch off of the wall. Take note of the two wires connected to screws on the switch. Use a circuit tester - hold it out to the wires to check if there’s any power running through, and if proven safe, unscrew the wires and simply screw in the new switch, making sure that it’s positioned right way up.

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