Archive for Home Repairs

Undermount Lights Attachment

Undermount Lights

Attaching Undermount Lights

As you know, kitchen lighting for the counters can really suck, depending on how your kitchen is laid out. I have some under-mounted lights that are life-savers for me, in my tiny kitchen. However, have you ever noticed how sometimes when you attach undermount lights, they don’t stick all that great? Here’s a post I did discussing when I purchased my undermount lighting.

My Story

I have undermount lights that are great in an emergency. They are battery operated. If there’s ever a power outage, which happens ALL THE TIME where I live, they become emergency flashlights. I tried to use the adhesive to stick them underneath the cupboards.

Undermount lights

Look what happened!

 

I put them up after I had painted the cupboards, using the adhesive, instead of the screws, which I had used before I painted. After a few months, the adhesive lost its grip, and they started falling. Bam! It scared the crap out of this diy home goddess the first couple of times. It must have the same problem the puck lights have. The heat causes the adhesive to corrode. On top of that, the paint was being removed with the adhesive! Look at what they did!

What To Do?

The tape light strips are hidden. They look very sophisticated. I don’t have those, because you need a power strip, and I need my outlets!

The puck lights have the same problem, they will steal my precious outlets! These cannot be adhesive attached because of the heat. They need screws. Read more

Changing the Toilet Fill Valve

FILL VALVE

Did you know a toilet flapper and a toilet fill valve were two different pieces of equipment a toilet tank? I didn’t. Yours truly thought those were different ways of saying the same thing, like some people call a river a brook, some call it a creek, some call it a “crick”.

This diy home goddess learned how to replace the toilet flapper a couple of years ago. Check out the story here. It was fairly easy once you got the hang of it. I had done it a couple of times, since I have three floors and four bathrooms. I thought I knew it all. Boy was I wrong.

The Story of My Broken Toilet Fill Valve

A couple of months ago, (Easter morning, as a matter of fact) my roommate was making all kinds of noise in the bathroom. The toilet would not fill after he flushed. We had been hearing the occasional hissing noise for a couple of weeks, but I hadn’t looked into the cause of it yet. Bad diy home goddess! I really need to learn to look at things immediately!

He was taking water from the sink, and putting it into the bowl to flush the toilet. And then the toilet bowl would not fill again. He was cussing up a storm. He didn’t know what to do, and didn’t want to wake me up. I think maybe I was ignoring the noise for about fifteen minutes before I got out of bed to find out what was going on.

Yeah, it was quite early on Sunday morning, but I just knew it was a flapper that had gone bad. The toilet as only about 2 years old, but I learned a flapper will disintegrate anywhere between two and five years, depending on the usage, the brand, the water supply, etc. After all, I had been through this before, and a diy home goddess learns form her mistakes, from mentors, other people, and the Internet! Read more

Toilet Flapper Replacement

TOILET FLAPPER

TOILET FLAPPER

The toilet flapper? The stopper? The whatchamacallit? Whatever name you use for that contraption that makes the tank refill with water after you flush the toilet, you need to become familiar with it. Why? Because it will need to be replaced every two to five years. And a home goddess doesn’t need to waste the $50-$100 by calling a plumber (I have friends who do) when you can do it yourself. Yes, even a diy home goddess can do this, easy peasy.

Why do you need to change the toilet flapper? There are two reasons to change a toilet flapper (the handyman official name for it):

  • If you have a chain, the chain broke. It’s metal, it can happen. You can’t flush the toilet at all.
  • The rubber no longer seals the hole where the water escapes. The water never stops running, because the water keeps leaving the tank; it never gets full.

My Story – “Tanks A Lot!”

When was my first time? I had used the toilet before I headed to work one morning. The toilet would not flush. I opened the tank, and saw the chain was broken and spread around the base. I lifted the metal bar for a manual flush and rushed off to work.

Read more

Total Bathroom Remodel – Not for a Novice!

BATHROOM REMODELBathroom Remodel

I desperately need a new master bath. When I bought my house I knew the master bath would have to be redone soon. I saved, but every time I was close to the estimated price (8K), something came up that had to be handled immediately. It took me 5 years, but I finally have the money and called to get a few estimates.

Bathroom Remodel

This is plastic sheeting!

FYI, I am going with Home Depot for the bathroom remodel. The estimator spent 5 hours with me, discussing each piece, showing samples, offering suggestions and guidance, explaining how things worked, rules and regulations, everything.

I got another estimate from my normal plumber, but was disappointed in the provided service. He walked into the bathroom (no measurements) and told me roughly 15K cost. Oh, did I mention when I got the estimate a week later it was 22K? He didn’t ask me questions before he gave the number, and said:

  • A european vanity.
  • No shower door
  • A medicine cabinet had to be on side wall, and didn’t discuss any mirror
  • Put a notch area in the wall for holding supplies (can’t be done in a firewall)
  • Didn’t give me options for shower other than tile
  • No colors discussed
  • No fixtures discussed
  • An exhaust fan (didn’t explain why, or that with a window it wasn’t mandatory)

Read more