Home improvement and renovation tips

Bathrooms


GFCI line and load

You need to installing a GFCI outlet near wet locations in bathrooms and kitchens, and as simple as it is, replacing a standard outlet with a GFCI does have a couple of wrinkles. With a standard outlet, you may connect the black (hot) wire coming from the panel to one of the brass screws on

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Kitchens


All about kitchen floors (Part I)

Choosing floors for your kitchen might take a little more attention than you’d spend on other rooms. This is because kitchen floors must do a number of things well. They should complement your cabinets and appliances. They need to be tough enough to handle a lot of traffic and the inevitable spills. And they must

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Tools


An introduction to wrenches

    There’s at least one in every toolbox. But wrenches come in all shapes, sizes and types, and each is suited to different tasks. Here’s a rundown of a few you should add to your arsenal, if you don’t have them already. Adjustable wrench. The old standby is a great, versatile tool. It comes in various

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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

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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

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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

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