Home improvement and renovation tips


How to repair concrete (Part II)

Last time, we looked at materials and helped you decide how to tackle your concrete repair. Let’s get down to patching that damaged area. Remove any loose or crumbling sections of concrete, and brush the area firmly with a steel brush. If the surrounding area appears loose, tap it lightly with a mini-sledge to test

Read More…

Read more in Exteriors


Budget kitchen makeovers

Installing cabinets, a center island with a bar sink, or replacing all your appliances will give your kitchen a whole new look. But if you’d prefer to start small, here are some ideas to help you spruce up your kitchen without spending a lot. Add crown molding to the top of your cabinet carcasses. This

Read More…

Read more in Kitchens


How to store paint

Every painting job leaves you with leftover paint. What, you had just enough? Well, almost every painting job, then. Save it for touchups later. Here are some tips to make sure it’s still usable when the time comes. Transfer it to a smaller container. Get a quart can, and fill it from the remaining pain

Read More…

Read more in Painting/Decorating

More reno demo tips – plumbing protection

Eric Z, a long-time reader, experienced renovator/builder, and former owner of a large building supply store in Toronto, had some smart suggestions after reading our reno-demo checklist. “I lost an entire renovation,” he writes. “$40,000 in damage – due to a shut-off valve failing in the night the day before the new sink was to be installed.” As you can see from this photo, during the entirety of our long

Read More…

Five-point checklist for a trouble-free renovation demolition

A recent kitchen renovation reminded me, in some cases a little too late, about some key areas to cover up during a demolition or drywall mudding/sanding. Here you go. Mask doorways into other areas of the house Well, duh. Okay, I did remember this one. For a major old-house plaster demo or drywall sanding, 6 mil plastic and painter’s tape do the trick to seal the openings well. We stapled

Read More…

How to install a toilet – Tips

Now that we’ve installed a toilet, we’ll review a few tips to help you do the job with finesse. 1. It’s a good idea to pick up an extra valve just in case your soldering attempt isn’t up to snuff… particularly with a ball valve. Or do the job while the store’s open. 2. Use a MAPP gas torch when soldering such a valve. 3. When tightening the supply hose

Read More…