Rabu, 29 Februari 2012

How To Replace the Kitchen Cabinet Hardware

If you are looking for a quick, effective, yet inexpensive way to change the appearance of your kitchen, forget about repainting the walls or replacing the tiles. All you need is a few minutes and you can totally update your kitchen’s look by simply changing the hinges and pulls of your cabinets and drawers. By choosing the correct cabinet hardware, you can focus your guests’ attention to the total design of the kitchen. This guide will help you choose the best hardware, remove the old hinges and pulls from your cabinets and drawers, and install the new hardware.

    Remove a sample of the hardware.  To avoid having to repaint all your cabinets, you should consider buying new cabinet hardware that has exactly the same size as the existing handles. You can also purchase new ones that are large and long enough to cover the old mounting holes. In order to purchase the best fitting hardware, take out a sample handle and bring this to the hardware store or home improvement shop. To be able to do this, you need to pull out a drawer or open a cabinet door and loosen the bolts that go into the wood and into the hardware.

    Once this has been unscrewed, simply detach the handle. If you plan to replace the hinges in your cabinet, be sure to buy ones that are exactly at the same type and size as the old hinges. Otherwise, your cabinet doors may not open and close properly, if at all. If you do not want to bring the old cabinet handle with you to the store, just measure the size of the handle. Begin measuring from the center of the hole to the other center rather than from one end of the handle to the other. Hardware stores carry templates that aid in measuring the length of the space between handles.

    Prepare the surface for mounting your new hardware. The doors of your kitchen cabinet may have escutcheons. These are brass, wood, or porcelain plates that are used to protect the cabinet surface from wear and to keep the wood from cracking or splitting. These plates are attached to the surface with brads. To remove these, you will need a cat’s paw or brad puller. If these are not available, pry off the escutcheon with a putty knife. Do this carefully in order to avoid damaging the cabinet’s surface.
    Purchase one piece of the new hardware that you plan to install. After choosing the handle or pull that you think would best complement your existing kitchen d├ęcor, buy just one set and attach it to the mounting holes that was left from removing the sample hardware. Check if the handle fits not just size-wise but in appearance as well. Try using it for a couple of days to check if it feels comfortable.  
    Remove the rest of the handles and knobs. Once you have decided to keep the sample handle, go back to the store and purchase the remaining handles and knobs that you will need. Take off all the existing pulls and put aside all the old screws. You can use these in case the ones packaged with the new hardware do not fit exactly.

Small existing mounting holes are easy to work with because all you need to do is to enlarge the hole using the new screws. If you find that the mounting holes are too big and the new screws cannot be tightened, get a small bottle of white glue and squirt a small amount into the holes. Push in a thin piece of wood such as barbecue skewers or toothpicks. Once the glue completely dries, trim the wood flush with your cabinet’s surface and then try inserting the screw again.

Kamis, 23 Februari 2012

How To Use Drywall Knives

When you are putting up a drywall, it is essential that you use drywall knives. These are helpful tools that do jobs that no other knife can do. These are knifes that have blades that are flat and edges that are straight. If you do not know how to use drywall knives yet, check out this guide to help you along the way:

    Take note of the different types of drywall knives. Knives like this come in a variation of sizes starting from four inches to 16 inches. Take note that it is always recommended to use at least three knives with different widths for your drywall project. Each size of drywall knives does a very different job. For instance, a 10-inch knife is used in applying and also removing excess compound. On the other hand, a five-inch knife is used for applying the compound in the drywall's seams and corners. If you come equipped with different sizes of knives, you can be certain that you will be assisted all throughout the project.
    Hold the drywall knives properly for better results. If you hold the knives well, your stroke will be improved. Plus, it can promote a more even and smooth distribution of the compound when using them for your drywall projects. The right way to grip it is to use your thumb, ring, and little finger to encircle the knife's handle. The middle and index finger will be used on both sides of the blade. These two fingers will be used to add pressure on the outer edges of the blades while you work.

    Use the drywall knives for removing excess compound. When using this knife for this purpose, hold the knife's edge at an angle right against the tape. Then, pull it firmly against the excess tape so you can trim the taping off.
    Clean the drywall knives every after use. If the compound becomes dry on the knives, you can end up having problems removing it later. Plus, dried compound on the knives will make them less efficient in performing their tasks. Hence, it is advisable that you clean the blades of each knife every after use. Plus, make sure you clean the blade very thoroughly. In most cases, it even is better to wipe the two sides of the blades of your knife every couple of seconds while your work. The best tool you can use in cleaning drywall knives is a pan blade. It is a tool that is helpful not only for sharpening the blade but also for wiping the blade clean.
    Get the rust off your drywall knives. Your knives are also prone to rusting. If this happens, you can get rid of it by sanding each blade with sandpaper until you see the blade smooth again. To prevent this from happening again, make sure you dry the knives after you use them.

You cannot finish your drywall project without the use of drywall knives. However, take note to use each knife with precision and care. It is important that you are guided on how to properly use them for best results of your project. Plus, it must be take cared of correctly to ensure they will remain efficient for your drywall projects for a longer period of time.

Jumat, 17 Februari 2012

How To Use a Pipe Bender

If there is a task at home that needs you to bend a pipe, calling a professional can be your first impulse. However, are you really ready to pay $20 or so for the labor and services when you can do the job yourself? Yes, it is very easy to bend a pipe. If you know how to use pipe benders, you are good to go. So, check out this guide to help you in correctly using a bender for any piping problem.

    Identify the degree of bend the pipe needs. Use a protractor for this purpose. You can measure the bend of the old pipe so you can easily know the angle for the pipe bend. Get a protractor and place it at the bend's center and then measure the bend.
    Position the pipe inside the bender. Notice the center of the half circle in the bender? This is where the middle point of the pipe's bend will occur after the task.
    Leverage the pipe bender and the pipe on the ground. This is to ensure that you get the right angle for the bend. Pull up the arm of the bender slowly while you read where the bend's degree is at. Do not do this in a hurry because you do not want to bend your pipe more than you need to.
    Remove the pipe out of the bender. When you have reached the right degree for the pipe's bend, remove it from the bender. Your job of bending the pipe ends here

    Use an electric bender as an alternative. There is also an electric pipe bender that you can use these days. Though this requires a different process, it is still way similar to bending a pipe using a traditional bender. You start this by measuring the diameter that you need your pipe to bend.
    Install a pipe stop on the electric pipe bender. The pipe stop must be mounted on the exact diameter that you wish your pipe to be bent. This is a great feature that an electric bender provides because it specifies a point where you want the bend executed accurately every time. Make sure to tighten the bolt afterwards using an adjustable wrench.
    Set the electric pipe bender. Pull the brass ring and release its fastener. Then, position this fastener over the pipe bender's nozzle. Adjust the bender's angle pin also so you can set the bending angle.
    Insert the pipe into the electric pipe bender. Make sure you position the pipe properly to get the right bend. Then, lock the pipe in place so that it will not move out of its position when the bender starts to work on it.
    Turn the button on to start the bending process. Locate the power switch of the electric bender and turn it on. Press Start to begin the process of bending the pipe following the settings you have made.

Isn't it easy to bend a pipe? With the help of a pipe bender, there is no more point for you to call a professional and pay a fee when the need arises. With this, you do not only save money but also save a lot of your time. Hence, consider investing in a pipe bender today, as it will always come in handy whenever these problems come into play.

Rabu, 15 Februari 2012

How To Make a Tsunami Prediction

A tsunami is the Japanese term for a tidal wave. It is characterized by a wave train that happens when a large volume of water is displaced. Tsunamis can be caused by a number of factors. Earthquakes, underwater explosions, meteorite impacts, landslides and volcanic eruptions can produce a tsunami. Because of its huge water volume and its immense energy, tsunamis can cause huge damages to a lot of coastal areas. The 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami was the worst tsunami ever recorded. It was triggered by a 9.1 – 9.3 moment magnitude earthquake and killed as many as 300,000 people. It is considered one of the deadliest natural disasters in history. Because of this, prediction of a tsunami is a field of science that has gained importance over the years. Scientists have been constantly forming strategies and methods to predict these killer waves. Here is how you can predict a tsunami.

    Watch out for earthquakes. Earthquakes usually cause tsunamis. When a high-magnitude earthquake occurs, it can be expected that tsunamis can be generated elsewhere. The possibility of such an occurrence is intensified when an earthquake is generated in an area that is surrounded by a body of water. Since an earthquake needs to happen first before a tsunami can be expected, the best thing that people can do is to warn people living in areas that are located an hour or even a number of hours away from where the earthquake happened. Tsunamis move fast. An efficient warning system is needed because by the time that the nearest area has been warned, that same area may have already been damaged and devastated by the tsunami.

    Watch out for volcanic eruptions. Explosive eruptions can displace a large amount of water through debris avalanches, pyroclastic flows and landslides. Formation of calderas because of collapsing volcanoes can also suddenly displace water. When any of these disasters happen, you can expect that a tsunami can be generated. Hence, you need to always watch out for news for explosive eruptions in order to be warned of the risk of tsunami generation.
    Watch out for tsunami warnings from monitoring stations. In the Pacific Ocean, a warning system called the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center has been set up in order to monitor tsunami occurrences. It uses a network of seismographic and tidal stations strategically located in the Pacific basin in order to get and process data to predict whether a tsunami can be generated. Warning signals are sent out to coastal areas in the Pacific when a tsunami is detected.
    Know if the area where you live in has been visited by tsunamis in the past. Some places are more prone to tsunamis than others. Tokyo, Hawaii, California and Singapore are some of these. In case you are living in an area where there is a great threat of a tsunami occurrence, be aware of some of the tsunami safety rules and make sure that you follow all of them.

Take note of all of these ways to predict a tsunami since a tsunami knows no concept of time. It can occur at any time, on any day so you should be prepared at all times.

How To Protect your Plants from your Cat

Cats like playing around with stuff they can get their paws on including your plants. They are most especially drawn to green and leafy plants and will not hesitate to nip at your plants given the opportunity. Your cat is not different from all other cats so expect the same behavior. Short of banning your cat from the premises of your home or before it even gets to the point where you put your cat up for adoption, there are ways to approach this problem before it really gets out of hand.

Here are some suggestions on keeping your cat off your plants.

    Pile on some rough stones. Your cat will dig through the soil surrounding your plants before actually moving on to the leaves or flowers. Provide a deterrent by placing rough stones around the soil of your plants. Once you are done with this task, observe how your cat will go about the new addition. If you see that he is still able to dig his way through. Go to the next suggestion.
    Sprinkle used coffee grounds on the soil. Coffee grounds are also great for soil fertilization so by sprinkling these on the soil, not only will your turn your cat off from playing with your plants, you also promote healthier soil.
    Elevate your plants. Get someone to make hanging shelves for you to place your plants on. By elevating your plants you are essentially solving the problem and nipping it in the bud. Just make sure your cat wouldn’t be able to find your way to the shelves by climbing through steel bars or steel enclosures near the shelves.

    Place your potted plants in a cart or barrel. It will make it difficult for your cat to climb through either to get to your plants.
    Sprinkle cayenne pepper on the soil and the leaves of your plants. The sting alone will make your cat leave your plants well alone.
    Buy plants that cats don’t like. Thorny plants and plants that give off a repugnant smell (for animals like cats) are one of the best deterrents for your cat.
    Make a green patch of grass. Here’s something you might not know: cats love grass and prefer it to plants. Maybe your cat attacks your plants because you don’t have a patch of green grass in your garden? Well, it’s time to get one in your garden. Buy the fast-growing variety of green grass. For sure, your cat will hang out on the grass more often than he would on your plants. However, you have to be aware of the fact that it will take a transition period from plants to grass but your cat will wise up eventually.
    Place lemon peels on the soil. The citrus scent of lemon and other citrus fruits for that matter turn cats off. It will also keep insects off your plants. Again – dual purpose.
    Tie tea bags on the stems of your plants. Tea bags also work against your cat’s instinct of nipping your plants. The green tea variety is particularly repugnant to your house feline.

You have to remember that cats don’t automatically focus on your plants as a plaything to destroy. In fact, this is the last resort when they are bored. Aside from using the suggestions listed on this page, you can buy toys or create home-made catnip that cats like playing with.

Rabu, 08 Februari 2012

How To Troubleshoot your Refrigerator

Your refrigerator can be considered a heavy-duty appliance since it works all day round. However, there are cases in which problems arise. Before you consider replacing your refrigerator, do some troubleshooting and investigation first. Learning how to troubleshoot your refrigerator can save you time, effort, and a good amount of money. Here are some easy-to-follow tips in solving common refrigerator woes.

    Check the power cord and plug. Before you end up whining, check if the cord is properly plugged in. If the cord is plugged in but the refrigerator is not working at all, the circuit breaker may have been tripped. Most house designs have a separate circuit breaker for heavy-duty appliances like HVAC and refrigeration. Check your fuse box, or use a voltage tester to see if the power outlet is working.
    Move the appliance away from the wall. Never position the appliance too close to the wall. Instead, leave at least four inches from the wall in order for the coils on the back to circulate properly. Some refrigerators have internal coils at the side, so consider your ref’s design in positioning it relative to the wall.
    Check the bulb or the bulb switch. Your fridge bulb should light up whenever the door is open. If it doesn’t turn on, this might indicate that either the bulb or the fridge is not working. Sometimes, though, the bulb remains turned on even when the door is shut, and this will result in cooling problems. Press on the kill switch along the door to check if the light is going off as intended. The light should turn off when you press the button. Change the switch if it is not functioning properly.

    Adjust the thermostat controller. The normal temperature inside a refrigerator is between 1 to 5 degrees Celsius. If you feel that your fringe is giving off warm air, then you have to check the thermostat setting. Simply adjust the thermostat controller located inside the refrigerator to a higher level.
    Check the fan and the condenser coils. If adjusting the temperature does not make any difference, then the problem may be in the fan or condenser coils. Their location will depend on the model of your fridge. Remove the fan and condenser coil cover and clean the inside with a vacuum cleaner or brush. Wash these with soap and water if the particles have thickened and have become greasy.
    Defrost the fridge. Defrosting involves removing the ice or frost from inside the freezer and the cooling elements. While some refrigerator models are self-defrosting, some will require manual defrosting on a regular basis. Remove all of the perishable foods and other items from the fridge and freezer. Turn off the refrigerator and leave the doors open overnight for the ice to melt. In the morning, make sure that you remove the remaining water first before replacing the items.

    Switch on the refrigerator and set the thermostat to its medium setting. Open the refrigerator after six hours and check if the temperature is back to normal. Some refrigerators offer a one-touch defrost setting, in which you just press a button, and the fridge turns off. It will automatically turn on when all the ice in the freezer has melted. After defrosting check the backside of the refrigerator for any accumulated water in the water receptacle. This is usually where the melted frost goes.

Most minor fridge problems can be solved on your own. However, if the issue is in the coolant or power supply, then you will have to ask for professional help.

Kamis, 02 Februari 2012

How To Unscrew a Bathtub Stopper

Unscrewing your bathtub stopper is necessary in order to replace it and to have your drain unclogged. Some people hire a plumber to do this but doing this yourself will actually save you money. You will also be able to acquire experience in maintaining and fixing your bathtub. This is actually a very easy task. Just make sure you know what type it is and you’ll be able to do it in no time. Just follow the simple instructions below and you will be able to successfully remove your bathtub stopper.

    Remove foot-lock plug. Remove your tub’s foot-lock plug. To do so, just unscrew it by simply turning it around in a counterclockwise manner. You shall find out if this is the type of your plug through the manner in which the drain is plugged. If the drain is sealed and unsealed by the foot pushing toward the plug, then it is a foot-lock plug.
    Remove roller-ball-type plug. If it is a roller-ball-type plug, unscrew it by simply turning it around in a counter-clockwise manner. If in the case you get the push and pull variant of this plug, know that you will need to either push or pull on its drain knob in order to have its seal changed.
    Remove lift-and-turn drain. If you have this type, look for its set screw. It should be underside. Unscrew it. You can now remove the plug. If you rotate its drain plug to have it sealed or unsealed, then it is a lift-and-turn drain.

    Remove pop-up drains. If you have this type, use pliers in order to hold down the stem underneath its cap. Unscrew this cap in order to have the plugged removed. You have this type if plug the drain by using the trip lever controlling the plug.

Now that you know the basics, the job should be easy enough, but if you are still unsure, you might want to ask your plumber about it. You should also take note that the instructions may change depending on the material of your bathtub stopper. Just remember the quick guidelines. Usually, bath tubs already come with a stopper. It is very simple especially if you already know the drain plug that you have. If the tub doesn’t have its trip lever, then it means that it’s a foot lock, lift-and-turn, or roller ball. If it has a smooth stopper, with no handle at the center, then it’s a foot-lock drain. If there is a handle at the center and it needs pushing and pulling, yours is a roller-ball drain. The twist-and-turn kinds of drains are similar to the roller-ball drains. However, they will require twisting the stopper along different directions in order to open it or close it. If the tub has its own trip lever allowing the stopper to be raised or lowered from its overflow plate, then it makes use of either a plunger or a pop-up drain. There are metal bathtub stoppers so you must want to ask your plumber about that.

If you are about to purchase your bath tub, it would be convenient for you in the future if you already ask questions while you are at it. You can also consult with your local handyman and bathroom fixture stores.

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