Quick Fixes Around the Home

Don't despair. Some repair projects around the home may need a professional's attention, but you can dispatch many others with the quick fixes we've compiled here.

| December/January 1993

  • country skills - quick fixes - swollen door
    Wet, swollen wood is the cause of sticking doors. Use a hair dryer to remove moisture from areas that stick, then use a wood sealer to keep moisture out.
    ANNE FRAKER
  • country skills - quick fixes - tea window cleaner
    Strong tea — in fact the stronger the better — works very well as a window cleaner.
    ANNE FRAKER
  • country skills - quick fixes - sticking lock - graphite
    To lube a lock: color the fitting key with lead from a pencil. Then stick key in lock and move back and forth.
    ANNE FRAKER
  • country skills - quick fixes - scaffold
    A mini-scaffold made from inverted milk cases and a board is a reliable quick fix when you need to reach repair projects up close to the ceiling.
    ILLUSTRATION: ANNE FRAKER
  • country skills - quick fixes - drill ceiling
    If you have to drill into the ceiling, use a disposable pie tin to catch falling sawdust and debris.
    ANNE FRAKER

  • country skills - quick fixes - swollen door
  • country skills - quick fixes - tea window cleaner
  • country skills - quick fixes - sticking lock - graphite
  • country skills - quick fixes - scaffold
  • country skills - quick fixes - drill ceiling
Editor's Note: There are no more excuses. You've been putting off that minor repair project around the house for months now, even though it's making the whole family crazy. Either you're not sure how to fix it, you fear you'll have to call in a money-sucking professional, or you've simply been too involved with the outdoor thrills of summer and fall to be bothered.

But now it's winter and you're trapped indoors, so you may as well repair the door that keeps slamming or adjust the window shade that won't snap back up. To help you along, we have compiled over a dozen quick fixes to the most common — and most irritating — problems you're likely to encounter around the home, based on the extensive home-repair experience of "Super Handyman" Al Carrell.

Door Repairs

An Easy Way to Sand

If a door is dragging on the floor or threshold — making scraping sounds — place sandpaper on top of a stack of magazines and position the pile under the door. (Use enough magazines so that the door hits the sandpaper.) Then work the door back and forth over the abrasive.

Dripless Lube Job



Use petroleum jelly instead of oil on door hinges. That way you don't have to worry about oil dripping on the carpet.

Lubricate Locks the "Write" Way






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