diy tips every home-owner should know
On July 2, 2000, an answer column was published in the newspaper.
I have been writing my \"level\" article for the past 15 months and have received more and more Reader inquiries, so the editor asked me to answer some printing questions.
Over the past seven years, these issues have been on the rise, and there have been very few weeks without some interesting new investigations that have allowed me to delve into building textbooks, or to solicit input from industry experts.
But interestingly, week after week, the same basic question is how to be asked over and over again.
For example, winning the DeWalt Combi exercise worth £ 250, the first question I answered in 2000 involved the sound insulation between the apartments of a converted house in the Edwardian era, there is also a wood worm hole on antique furniture that may pass itself on to the wood elsewhere in the house.
Over the next few weeks, I dealt with questions about trees close to buildings, noise from central heating pipes, Artex on the ceiling, and the dangers of laying attic insulation on top of cables.
All very good questions, and those that go into the first edition of The Sunday Telegraph\'s guide to taking care of your property.
The same problem continues, however.
In the past week alone, I have received three versions of the sound insulation issue, two versions are about the wood worm hole, and two versions are about laying insulation on the cable.
The most common question I \'ve been asked-sometimes 10 to 12 times a week-is about Moss on the roof.
This seems to have caught the attention of many older readers, perhaps because they mentally think it threatens their home.
It\'s a fear of no basis, but it\'s taken advantage of by the cold
Phone and leaf clothing for pressure
Washing and sealing services at high prices. (
My advice is to always look at the property ads in Country Life magazine, where there are the mossy houses
The covered roof always seems to have the highest price tag. )
Another common problem is condensation, which is caused by warm and humid air hitting a cool surface.
Our grandparents have a very clear generation of how to deal with it-they have opened the window.
But because of the decline in the level of physics in schools, and the government\'s relentless propaganda that encourages us to keep the air in our homes, this knowledge seems to have been lost --tight.
So every week several readers write to ask why the windows in their bedroom are blurry.
Then there are some conventional questions about the wet problems caused by the insulation of the cavity wall, which is a controversial value product, and the government agencies have also vigorously promoted this product.
The government and the insulation industry claim that the cavity wall insulation does not allow the rain to pass through the cavity, but I have a large reader letter document that is conclusive to indicate that it is OK as well.
Other root plants
Double glazing, Super
Wet patches on the breast of the heater and chimney.
The misconduct of the sales staff always brings a lot of problems. Double-glazing, damp-
Exterior wall paint and spray-
The foam roof bottom paint is sold by the sales staff. based salaries.
Not only do these people sometimes know less about buildings than you do, but the more they can get you to pay for their questionable products, the more they pay.
Unfortunately, thousands of homeowners continue to fall for the sale of a man in a suit.
The biggest part of the book is about plumbing and heating, as this can constitute a home disaster that requires immediate attention when the pipes start to leak, or when central heating fails.
Unfortunately, pipeline technology is no longer what it was.
Many plumbers and heating engineers seem to be confused about relatively simple issues, and they are more willing to suggest replacing the boiler on a large scale, or even the whole heating system, than trying to keep the existing equipment running. The big-
The name of the energy supply company is usually better using commissionpaid salesmen (Yes, they are again)
The sale of new boilers under various excuses, from \"manufacturers stop making spare parts\" to \"new ventilation requirements\", is often proven to be false after careful inspection.
The size of my pouch and email inbox shows how much readers care about their home, how difficult it is to get independent advice without the deception of vested interests, or by well-
But not good.
Well trained builders
Of course, in an ideal world, homeowners can seek independent advice from the Chartered measurement profession.
Unfortunately, most people only hire licensed surveyors when they buy a house and have to pay the surveyor\'s mortgage valuation report.
This experience is often not pleasant, and the surveyor appears in a suit, unwilling to move the furniture, lift the drain cover, climb the ladder, or even kneel down on one knee and look under the cabinet.
No wonder buyers are skeptical about the subsequent report, which usually makes them shop
Other \"experts\" list they should consult on sewer, electrical appliances, heating, roof and wet conditionproofing.
In this book, I am trying to explain why this is the case and how to prevent some of the most common measurement errors.
I would like to thank the thousands of readers who have written to me over the past seven years.
I reply as many letters as I can, but sometimes at a loss.
So, if I don\'t answer your particular question, then please first make sure that there is no answer in the book, and if there is certainly no, please write again and I will answer as much as I can.
Give a little care and attention to the decoration skills, wood doors and windows will continue forever.
This means polishing, touching, or repainting on an occasional basis with the proper spirit --based primer (on bare wood)
, Bottom coating and gloss.
Exterior bricks should not be painted;
It captures moisture.
The only sympathetic coating on the old house is the traditional lime water.
Paint Stripping Q.
In my house in my 1930 s, we have paneled wooden doors that were originally decorated with dark varnish.
They have been painted several times and we want to peel them back to the wood before redecorating.
We have considered sending them to a company that uses caustic soda baths.
How do you rate it for nitroso compounds or heat-air gun? A.
It is quick and easy to soak in caustic soda, but it will make the old door shrink and twist, and some carpenters say it will damage the bonded seams.
Blowing lights or heat-
Airsoft guns are the traditional method, but if you use this method and put on a respirator, you will be poisoned by paint smoke. Children or pregnant women are not allowed at home.
Chemical Paint remover is usually the fastest and safest method.
Useful contact: paint off (
Chemical Paint remover)
01787 371524, www.
Stripperspaintremovs. com; Stonehealth (paint removers)
01672 511515 surface preparation Q.
I bought paint for the front room of my Victorian basement apartment, stripped the wallpaper and found the plaster below uneven and cracked.
I don\'t want to put the wallpaper back, but they look bad if I put the paint on the wall.
Is there anything I can do to make the surface better? A. Yes. Wallpaper it.
This property was originally done internally with limeand-sand plaster.
Lime plaster is a wonderful material, and as the walls move, any drastic movement is usually accommodated by a series of small cracks on the entire wall, rather (
Like hard, modern materials)
In the middle of a big blow.
But Victorian people don\'t dream of painting directly on plaster.
They always line the walls with thick lining paper, which helps to eliminate cracks and absorb movement.
The correct way to deal with cracked Lime plaster is to rake out and fill in any particularly wide crack and sandpaper when drying.
Then apply a heavy layer-grade (1000 gauge)
Lining paper, second mediumgrade (800 gauge)lining paper.
The first level should be horizontal (\'cross-lining\')
The second vertical layer
When dry, the new paper surface comes with an emulsion and provides a good soft surface.
Decorative gypsum board Q.
I moved into a new house with plasterboard walls and I need to start redecorating.
But in my experience, Plasterboard is like ink-absorbing paper, even after applying a few layers of lotion.
I was told,to-
The date method for sealing this wall is with a solution of pva glue-is this the preferred method? A.
Several readers who recently built the house complained that they started scraping off the wallpaper and found that they were scraping off the surface of the gypsum board.
On painted walls, not paper walls, care must be taken to Polish painted surfaces so as not to damage gypsum board.
Gypsum board is very absorbent and must be sealed.
Dilution of the pva glue is an option, but it is better to use one of the products recommended by the manufacturer, such as the Gyproc drywall sealant for the English plaster.
This seals the gypsum board before the paint, and if used before the wallpaper, also claims to resist the subsequent stripping of the steam wallpaper (
English plaster, 0800 225225, www. british-gypsum. bpb. co. uk).
Quick tips for removing Artex and other textured paint surfaces may contain asbestos fibers and should be treated with care.
Any potential danger from inhaling dust, so it\'s better to get it wet.
The easiest way is to use the steam wallpaper stripper and scraper and seal the wet wiper in a plastic box lining bag.
Painting does not save a lot of time in small jobs in China.
Compared to the time saved in the app, you spend more time shielding the surrounding area and cleaning the device after use.
Try the roller with a telescopic extension rod.
Blistering cleaning before paint is crucial, especially in the lotion on the old wall.
Sugar soap, a caustic solution for cleaning wood products before fresh oil coating
Based on paint, it can also help to paint the wall, especially if there are traces of paint residue on the wall.
But it usually only needs to be lightly polished and rinsed with clear water.
For any plaque that continues to bubble, the fastest solution is to cover them first with a multi-cell staining block.
I am not a big fan of drawing tiles because the effect looks amateur.
But this can be done as long as the tiles are still firmly fixed on the wall (
Check by tapping and listening to hollow noise).
Use tile paint and follow the instructions in the letter.
In order to get the best results, the old mud is raked out using a proprietary rake first
Tools, paint and re-apply
Grouting with contrasting colors.
The most common confused letter from Jeff Howell tells me that the new ventilation rules require a lot of work, otherwise my boiler will become illegal in 2008. Is this true?
Flue \"chimney\" boiler.
There are no new regulations or new safety standards on this issue, and the ventilation requirements have not changed.
The only reason for any Keki
The registered gas engineer should recommend adding ventilation if the boiler is incorrectly installed or the ventilation has been reduced or if it is free
After that, the vertical boiler is \"separated\" or enclosed in the cabinet.
What is the new standard for loft insulation in existing houses?
There are no new standards for existing homes [
Only brand new home;
100mm of fiberglass is covered for close boarding and will provide a good level of insulation, and any additional thickness is unlikely to have any significant impact on comfort or heating costs.
Two of me.
The glaze unit has started to fog.
Premature blistering of the sealed glazed unit is usually caused by incorrect installation.
When the window is open or subject to a wind load, the glass needs to be installed in the drainage and ventilation rebate, supported on special blocks, with spacers around the edges to support it.
I received an \"outside, long term-through the door-
Life, waterproof, protective wall paint \".
The ad flyer you sent me is typical of a direct marketing strategy that readers should be careful about.
In fact, these wall coatings are much thicker than ordinary exterior masonry coatings, and the seller\'s claim that they are \"porous\" or \"breathable\" is not supported by any independent scientific evidence.
Promise of the Dragon-
Exterior walls, especially solid brick houses, do not actually require the term waterproof.
Many wet problems are caused by the moisture generated inside the house, and the coating will trap this moisture on the wall, resulting in possible condensation problems and mold growth.
For complete answers to these and other questions, see Jeff\'s book (details above).
We all like to improve and hope to add value to our homes.
But homeowners are often used by designer kitchens, limestone tiles and high
Tech bathroom suite, ignoring the practical issues that need to be addressed before starting an expensive renovation project.
Here are some of Jeff\'s Answers to Reader\'s questions: bathroom Q. How do I re-
Color bathtub in white? A. Having a cast-
Iron Bath re-appropriate
Paint bags will be an expensive and disruptive business.
More common is the application of Bath surface, epoxy coating.
The re-surface can be very effective if handled properly, and the interference of removing the bathtub and interfering with the tile and plumbing works is avoided.
The re-surface has multiple colors to choose from and should last for five to ten years before it needs to be used again.
Try Renubath for a professional job (www. renubath. co.
0800 138 2202, UK);
According to the bath conditions, the price starts at about 180.
Strong diy enthusiasts, £ 55 for a skin change kit (From Plumbworld. co. uk).
I have never re-paved the entire tub myself, but I have done some minor repairs and a good finish is very easy to implement. Flooring Q.
Can I lay oak floors on concrete? A.
I don\'t object to oak floors, but oak is a wood that is particularly difficult to use because of its high moisture movement.
Oak floors can work well on the upper and traditional hanging floors, on which
Floor ventilation eliminates any moisture on the ground below and maintains a uniform humidity balance on the floor.
The problem of laying any kind of wood floor on a solid ground --
Floor concrete floor refers to the inevitable occurrence of dry air on the board, and wet air appears below, resulting in problems of warping and deformation.
If you are determined to lay wood floors on concrete, the best option might be some type of engineering laminate that covers the cork base with real wood.
Buy from reputable manufacturers and follow their installation instructions so you can make a claim if there are any problems.
Personally, I do not recommend using any type of wood floor on concrete floorsfloor slab.
Lighting I found another problem with the lower lighter-cutting the holes on the gypsum board would obviously reduce the fire resistance of the ceiling.
I am transforming a house into three apartments, which means there must be a separate ceiling
Hourly fire rating.
The building control officer said that cutting the holes on the gypsum board for the lower lighter would weaken the integrity of the ceiling and he would not allow it to be done.
Is there a solution? Low-
Interior designers and architects are very interested in voltage reducers on the ceiling, but few consider the impact on fire safety (
Or noise or moisture transmission)
Cut 65mm holes in the ceiling to accommodate them.
Fortunately, some manufacturers are working on this and there are now several brands of lighters claiming to have 60-
Minutes of fire resistance and stop the transmission of sound and moisture through the ceiling (
See Snaplite, www. snaplite. co. uk; 0879 443 7735).
Regulations on Attic and fire protection
My house is open.
Planned living area with stairs.
If I have completed the loft conversion, do I need to restore the corridor to get approval for the building and fire regulations?
Is that not good as long as the attic window is easy to walk out? A.
If you put two
A three-story house
By adding a loft conversion, you must provide a protected fire escape route from the attic to the front door.
This means putting the stairs and corridors in one-hour fire-
Protective Housing (
Masonry or gypsum board)
, All the doors adjacent to this shell are their ownclosing.
School of Music Q.
My greenhouse is too hot.
Can you recommend air? conditioning? A.
There is no ventilation, the internal sun shade is invalid.
I suggest the installation is low permanently
Flat the vents in the walls and/or doors and investigate the possibility of locking the roof lights in the open position when going out (
Recommended only if there is a lockable door between your greenhouse and the House).
The idea of building a greenhouse into the sun-
I always feel a bit crazy and then install the air conditioner to cool it down.
There should be a basic kit for all families including tape measure, claw hammer, screwdriver (
Slotting and crossinghead)
Sharp Wood saw (
To prevent rust, put it in a cardboard sheath)
, Primary steel saw, pliers, pipe pliers (
Mole grip or vice grip)
, Mental level and adjustable wrench.
The optional add-on features include 25mm chisels, aircraft or Surform and 50mm support, double the floor lift.
All of this is best purchased separately-do not fall into the \"full kit\" scam;
Their quality is usually the cheapest and you won\'t use half of them.
There are a lot of professional Wickes
High quality manual tools and some heavy tools
Store them in the storage box on duty.
Many builders I know no longer buy top power toolsof-the-
Due to the theft of construction sites and the theft of trucks, there is a wide range of electric tools.
The value of the Wickes professional range is high and the tools look as good as the more expensive brand.
Every family needs an electric drill with a hammer. action.
Cordless electric drill (
With rechargeable battery)
Also useful, can be used as an electric screwdriver, but your main bit should be plug-in
In Variety, due to the lack of power of the battery drill through tough materials. A jig-
Saw is the same as track Sander and is usually useful-triangle Sander
The shaped head is perfect for awkward corners like window glass strips.
Buying replacement discs and triangles from the store can be expensive-I purchased them in bulk from www. screwfix. com.
The steam wallpaper stripper will save you hours of energy.
Can also be used (with a scraper)
Clear paint, varnish, floor-
Tile adhesive, even Artex.
Use a copper tube instead of a flat plate to fit it.
Plate steamer, you can even use it to spray paint from a Victorian plaster cornice (
Don\'t forget to use gloves, work clothes and safety specifications).
Christmas gift of any power
Tool lovers are a dustextractor.
These are like vacuum cleaners (
And can be used like this)
But there are also plug sockets for power tools, which are automatically turned on when using tools.
Today, almost all power tools come with ports connected to dustextractor.
The smartest gadget I \'ve come across recently is the easy Raker mortar. removing tool.
This is a diamond.
Mounting position for disc-
Grinder and Larkin short work-
Remove the mortar before re-pointing. The 100mm-
The long version can remove the entire brick from the wall in an instant.
JB industrial tools, available at 0870 166 0041.
Maintenance skills when real estate agents and mortgage lenders are keen to tell them first --
Time buyers can borrow as a multiple of their income, and they rarely mention that an additional amount of 1 to 5 of the value of the property they are buying needs to be spent each year to maintain good order.
At least, you should make the following repairs: 1.
Clean up your ditches every fall and make sure they drain freely. 2.
Painting the carpentry outside
Doors, windows, fascias and barge boards-
If not in the past five years.
You should start by burning the old glossy paint, but test the lead first;
If there is a layer of lead paint, then it is better not to be disturbed, but to apply a layer. 3.
Outdoor Ground as low as 150mm (
Two brick courses)
Under the DPC, if you have a new path or terrace, don\'t let the builder put them on the top of the existing
Always dig the ground first.
Don\'t let the soil in the flower bed pile up
Against the outer wall. 4.
Once a leak is found, especially a drip overflow pipe, the leak is repaired.
Most of our families need three months of heating.
Several quarters of the year
It is no wonder that when there is a problem with heating, it is easy for homeowners to be held for ransom by the transaction.
Corrosion Inhibitor Q.
How can I tell if it is enough (or any)
Added corrosion inhibitor to my central heating system?
A British Gas station clerk poured some water into the glass from the radiator and told me that because the water was black, the system was stained, I need to pay for the electricity.
But I\'m sure when we installed a new radiator in the bathroom two years ago, the system was drained and preservatives were added. A.
You cannot judge the condition of the system from the color of the water.
Even in the clean Center
In the heating system, after the corrosion inhibitor is added, the water will appear dark due to dissolved oxides and residues.
Any heating engineer can test the presence of an inhibitor (
For example, by using the Fernox protector test kit, the cost of 50 tests is about £ 20, or the cost of two Tests is about £ 1 Sentinel X100 test kit).
Both can be used to test concentrations that inhibit chemicals (
By collecting a little bit of water from the radiator vent valve, add the tablets and pay attention to the color.
GE Water also provides a complete analysis of system Water and tap Water for about £ 10, including sending samples to the lab.
Test kits can be purchased from PlumbCenter or Plumbase or call GE Water (
0151 420 9595, www. gewater. com)for stockists.
Alternatively, a simple DIY test is to pour some water into a glass jar and put a few steel nails and a 1 p coin (
Metal in a simulated heating system).
If the nail rusts after a month, this will happen to your radiator as well.
If the nails are kept clean, there is enough preservatives in the system.
Radiator does not work Q.
One of mine has four radiators. bedroom flat.
The two closest to the boiler are working, but the two at both ends of the apartment are not working.
This is not a gas gate problem.
I think the system needs to be flushed.
Can I do it myself? A.
First try to turn off the two heat sinks to see if this will pass some heat to the other radiators.
You may need to raise the speed of the pump by a notch.
If this is done, then this is just an example of balancing the radiator.
If not, then the next step is to drain the system to see if the blockage can be eliminated.
If it fails, use Fernox or Sentinel central heating recovery (
Fernox helpline, 01799 550811, www. fernox. com)
Clean up the system before draining and refilling.
Faster hot water
When we want the hot water in the kitchen, we waste a sink full of cold water before it gets hot. A.
This is a common problem.
The simple answer is to get a small one without venting
Electric water heater sink.
These are very simple, can be from the nearest 13-amp socket.
They\'re usually 10-to 15-
The capacity of the liter, which means they can be heated quickly and provide enough hot water for cleaning.
Let it feed with cold water in the water pipe and use your existing hot water
Only the water system in the bathroom.
Manufacturers include Ariston (01494 755600)
And Heatrae Sadiya (www. heatraesadia.
Com, 01603 420100).
Competitor: win the DeWalt Combi exercise worth £ 250. The Sunday Telegraph works with Screwfix.
Two DeWalt Combi exercises were presented.
This professional tool is one of the best-selling drill bits in Europe.
Now the latest version adds power consumption, running time, and durability
All the features you need to help your DIY project succeed.
Screwfix also has some DIY tips and tricks to get the best out of power tools.
The company\'s research found that 2 out of 3 customers now prefer to download DIY guides from the Internet, referring to suggestions from MP4 players during their work, rather than looking up a large number of hardcover manuals.
The company, in collaboration with TV DIY expert Gavin Lowe, has produced a \"how to\" video guide that can be downloaded from www. howto. tv/screwfix.
In order to win the chance of an exercise, all you need to do is email: home and living @ telegraph. co.
UK and answer this question: please add the words \"exercise contest\" to the subject field of your email and include your name, address and phone number during the day, as well as the answer to the question
The deadline is two o\'clock P. M. on Friday, December 14, 2007.
Screwfix DeWalt Combi lottery draw terms and conditions 1.
The draw is open to residents of the United Kingdom, the Channel Islands, Mando and Ireland aged 18 or over, except for employees of Telegram Media Group Limited and Screwfix Direct Limited, their family, agents, or any professionals related to the draw. 2.
How to enter details of a part of the terms and conditions.
All rules are accepted as final rules, and competitors agree to comply with them, a condition for entry.
The judge\'s decision was final and no communication would be made. 3.
Entries must be submitted to home and live @ telegraph by email. co.
One per person for UK and entry restrictions.
Contestants must include \"drill contest\" in the subject field, name, address and day phone number of the email and the answer to the question \".
Entries that are Late, illegible, incomplete, defaced or corrupt are not accepted.
No liability can be accepted for lost entries, and the proof of sending will not be accepted as proof of receipt.
The winner will be randomly drawn from all the correct entries received before the deadline.
The winner\'s name and county can be obtained by sending sae to Screwfix Winners, Telegraph Home and live, 111 Buckingham Palace Road, SW1W 0DT, London, from December 16-20, 2007 to January 15. 4.
All entries must be received by two o\'clock P. M. on Friday, December 14, 2007. 5.
Winners will be notified within 24 hours of the draw deadline. 6.
The prizes described are available on the date of publication. 7.
Two contestants will each win a De Walt Combi exercise. 8.
Prizes are subject to availability, non-transferable, and there is no cash option. 9.
Winners may be required to participate in the promotion. 10.
There may be events that, for reasons beyond the control of the promoter, make the award of the prize itself or the prize impossible, therefore, the Promoter may, at its sole discretion, change or modify the entrant to the promotion to agree that the promoter shall not assume any responsibility for this. 11.
The telegram is responsible for the first part of the promotion, that is, the publication and award of the lottery.
All other facilities related to the provision of prizes are the responsibility of Screwfix Direct Limited.