Author Topic: Home Improvement Thread  (Read 22023 times)

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Online NatNasty

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Re: Home Improvement Thread
« Reply #200: March 06, 2016, 02:54:54 PM »
Well, this has been an expensive week.

Replace heat pump.  Check.
Replace toilet.  Check.
Then, earlier today while I'm in the shower, I hear my wife say, "I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but the picture on the TV just went out.  There's sound but no picture."  Fortunately a reboot of the cable box fixed it.  I was about to go through the roof.

Offline mitlen

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Re: Home Improvement Thread
« Reply #201: March 06, 2016, 02:55:26 PM »
Well, this has been an expensive week.

Replace heat pump.  Check.
Replace toilet.  Check.
Then, earlier today while I'm in the shower, I hear my wife say, "I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but the picture on the TV just went out.  There's sound but no picture."  Fortunately a reboot of the cable box fixed it.  I was about to go through the roof.

New roof      :phew:

Online varoadking

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Online NatNasty

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Online imref

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Re: Home Improvement Thread
« Reply #204: March 06, 2016, 05:55:06 PM »
our showers have 4" white tiles, the grout and caulk hasn't been touched in 13 years and is stained/cracked in numerous spots, so it looks like a re-grout/ recaulk is in the cards.  I've never done this kind of work before.  Is it something a half-way decent DYI'r can do?  Any recommendations for removing the old group and caulk?

Online GburgNatsFan

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Re: Home Improvement Thread
« Reply #205: March 06, 2016, 06:28:10 PM »
Yes, a homeowner can do it, but it's not really easy. You can buy little hand-held grout saws at HD or Lowes or any like store. Consider a dremel tool with a grout attachment if you have wide grout joints. Also, consider how much grout you need to remove - you can freshen up without removing all the grout in the joint (although you do have to take out most of it to ensure a good mechanical bond).

Mixing grout takes effort (or a cord drill and mixing attachment). Application is fairly easy, although floating it into the joints is surprisingly physical. The trickiest part is knowing how much you can do before you have to start cleaning up the drying grout - that's caught me in the past.

I'd be willing to bet you can get an overview of the whole process in one of a million youtube videos.

our showers have 4" white tiles, the grout and caulk hasn't been touched in 13 years and is stained/cracked in numerous spots, so it looks like a re-grout/ recaulk is in the cards.  I've never done this kind of work before.  Is it something a half-way decent DYI'r can do?  Any recommendations for removing the old group and caulk?

Online Ali the Baseball Cat

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Re: Home Improvement Thread
« Reply #206: March 06, 2016, 06:32:47 PM »
I did DIY grout once in our first kitchen.  Will never do it again, largely because the results were crap and there are lots of experts in the parking lot at Home Depot who need the money.   

Offline tomterp

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Re: Home Improvement Thread
« Reply #207: March 06, 2016, 09:22:07 PM »
our showers have 4" white tiles, the grout and caulk hasn't been touched in 13 years and is stained/cracked in numerous spots, so it looks like a re-grout/ recaulk is in the cards.  I've never done this kind of work before.  Is it something a half-way decent DYI'r can do?  Any recommendations for removing the old group and caulk?

Tear that old sh$& out and have a professional put the tile you like in. 

Online Slateman

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Re: Home Improvement Thread
« Reply #208: March 18, 2016, 05:46:14 PM »
What solvent do you use to remove vinyl adhesive from concrete after scraping up the tile?

Online GburgNatsFan

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Re: Home Improvement Thread
« Reply #209: March 18, 2016, 09:54:04 PM »
Is there one? Or do you sand it off?

These weren't the 9 inch asbestos-laden tiles, right? Nah. The house it too new for that.

What solvent do you use to remove vinyl adhesive from concrete after scraping up the tile?

Online Slateman

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Re: Home Improvement Thread
« Reply #210: March 18, 2016, 11:16:26 PM »
85, so too new. I think I'm going with the grinder. Spent four hours today scraping with Goo Gone and it isn't enough. Probably have to buy a couple wheels and borrow my BiL's hand grinder.

Online Slateman

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Re: Home Improvement Thread
« Reply #211: May 08, 2016, 11:47:25 AM »
Need some advice.

Currently re-doing my kitchen and we're looking to start laying ceramic tile. I want the tile to be completely level with the dining room floor, so I can lay a seem less transition. Right now, the tile is a little below the wood. My first idea was to lay durock/cement board underneath, but everything I've read online seems to indicate that putting durock over a cement floor is not only a bad idea, but a crap ton of work.

How thick can I apply the mortar? Could I apply enough mortar to raise it about a fifth of an inch? Has anyone ever utilized Schluter Ditra?


Dining floor: Hardwood (bamboo I think)
Exact height difference: 0.213 inch
Size of tile: 36x6
Height of tile: 0.353 inch

If I lay the tile flat on the concrete, the top of the tile is 0.213 inch lower than the top of the hardwood. Can I "make up the difference" with thinset?

Online NatNasty

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Re: Home Improvement Thread
« Reply #212: May 19, 2016, 09:13:45 PM »
Anyone own a lithium powered weed wacker?  I'm fed up messing with 2-cycle engines and wondering if a lithium weed wacker can handle the workload.  Been eyeing a 40v model that uses the same battery as my lithium hedge trimmers (which I bought about a year ago and have been very pleased with).

Offline HalfSmokes

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Re: Home Improvement Thread
« Reply #213: May 19, 2016, 09:16:24 PM »
Anyone own a lithium powered weed wacker?  I'm fed up messing with 2-cycle engines and wondering if a lithium weed wacker can handle the workload.  Been eyeing a 40v model that uses the same battery as my lithium hedge trimmers (which I bought about a year ago and have been very pleased with).

I had a worx, after a couple of years I needed a new battery, but the shape had changed in the meantime and the old ones had doubled in price- I bought a gas powered one instead of a new battery- my new rule is that, if feasible I want my tools to be corded or gas powered

Online Natsinpwc

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Re: Home Improvement Thread
« Reply #214: May 19, 2016, 09:40:29 PM »
Anyone own a lithium powered weed wacker?  I'm fed up messing with 2-cycle engines and wondering if a lithium weed wacker can handle the workload.  Been eyeing a 40v model that uses the same battery as my lithium hedge trimmers (which I bought about a year ago and have been very pleased with).
I've had a Black and Decker--whatever the cheapest model is (18v battery?).  Worked oK for a few years but winding down its life and the batteries don't hold charge as well as they used to.  Batteries are like $50 so I went and bought a Ryobi model this year--was on sale at Home Depot. $70 I believe. Working well so far although I don't do much heavy duty stuff.  The line seems shorter than the B&D one so had to start on the replacements already.  And it only came with one battery.  If I get 5 or so years out of it seems worth it.  As you say the 2 cycle engines are a pain. 

Online imref

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Re: Home Improvement Thread
« Reply #215: May 19, 2016, 11:16:13 PM »
i use an electric black and decker

Offline HalfSmokes

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Re: Home Improvement Thread
« Reply #216: May 23, 2016, 07:55:47 AM »
I had covered gutters installed a while ago on the whole house except for a utility room. Last night my wife points out water is dripping in rather aggressively- apparently that's what happens when you forget to.clean the gutters for a year- fun thing to do on a rainy night. At least its an uninsulated room, so no real mold worries

Online GburgNatsFan

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Re: Home Improvement Thread
« Reply #217: May 23, 2016, 09:20:10 AM »
I have the four-stroke ryobi. It's a very nice unit. No mixing, starts easily every year with no maintenance (except the occasional oil change).

The new battery operated ones are interesting. Let me know how it works out.

Anyone own a lithium powered weed wacker?  I'm fed up messing with 2-cycle engines and wondering if a lithium weed wacker can handle the workload.  Been eyeing a 40v model that uses the same battery as my lithium hedge trimmers (which I bought about a year ago and have been very pleased with).

Online GburgNatsFan

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Re: Home Improvement Thread
« Reply #218: May 23, 2016, 09:21:28 AM »
That kind of intentional obsolescence is unforgivable.

I had a worx, after a couple of years I needed a new battery, but the shape had changed in the meantime and the old ones had doubled in price- I bought a gas powered one instead of a new battery- my new rule is that, if feasible I want my tools to be corded or gas powered

Offline HalfSmokes

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Re: Home Improvement Thread
« Reply #219: May 23, 2016, 09:40:09 AM »
That kind of intentional obsolescence is unforgivable.


I just expect it, same thing happened with my dewalt drill- you can only expect the design to stay static for so long, that's why I try to stick with gas or plug in (with hand tools, plug in also just works better assuming you're near enough to an outlet, and since most things I do are home improvement/repair and not at a jobsite, that's usually the case)

Offline mitlen

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Re: Home Improvement Thread
« Reply #220: May 23, 2016, 09:51:12 AM »
When is your new laptop/phone/PC/power tool, etc. obsolete?       When you walk out the door with it.

Offline BrandonK

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Re: Home Improvement Thread
« Reply #221: May 23, 2016, 09:57:22 AM »
When is your new laptop/phone/PC/power tool, etc. obsolete?       When you walk out the door with it.

Buy secondhand!

Online GburgNatsFan

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Re: Home Improvement Thread
« Reply #222: May 23, 2016, 10:02:00 AM »
I understand when advancements happen, but the price of older packs shouldn't jump just to push you to the newest thing.

Gotta say, though... I love my cordless hand tools. I personally hate cords, but that's just me.

I've seen several videos on youtube of people pretty easily rebuilding their power tool battery pack. If you can get it open, the cells are pretty standard and can be reworked. Or so it appears. I haven't had an Li pack go out yet (although all of my nickel metal hydride packs are done).

I just expect it, same thing happened with my dewalt drill- you can only expect the design to stay static for so long, that's why I try to stick with gas or plug in (with hand tools, plug in also just works better assuming you're near enough to an outlet, and since most things I do are home improvement/repair and not at a jobsite, that's usually the case)

Offline NJ Ave

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Re: Home Improvement Thread
« Reply #223: May 23, 2016, 10:39:24 AM »
I have a cordless B&D. Works pretty well but I'm glad it came with a second battery.

Offline mitlen

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Re: Home Improvement Thread
« Reply #224: May 23, 2016, 11:59:41 AM »
Buy secondhand!

Don't turn on your cellphone and hire other people.