Home Improvement

Tips for the Do-It-Yourselfers for the future generations

Are you planning for a home remodelling? Want to do the project by yourself? Many homeowners think or prepare for a home improvement project by themselves, knowing that they can eliminate the labour expense and chop a project's cost in half than hiring a contractor. In the first place, do-it-yourself activities are exciting and gratifying. It is immensely satisfying to see the end product when you do something from start to finish. However, engaging in a do-it-yourself task is tricky, especially if you are not a well-experienced do-it-yourselfer. As most experts often say, there are some precautions that you must follow while undertaking home projects by yourself.  


Here are a few of the standard safety tips for the do-it-yourselfers:


· When working with some hazardous materials, it is best for you to wear protective clothing. 

There are some safety goggles and gloves that you can wear while doing the home improvement task.


· Use a mask while working in dusty conditions, especially if you see wood.


· If you consider house painting, keep the room well ventilated and never smoke.


· If you are working with materials that provide toxic fumes, it is always essential to ensure that the room is airy and well-ventilated.


· Employ suitable quality types of equipment while working. One thing to note here is to use the right tools for the job.


· Speaking of tools, keep the tools in such a place that they are safe and that children and pets cannot reach.


· If you are using knives, cut away from you. Using after them, keep them locked.


· When fixing or checking electrical connections, it is advisable to switch off the power and remove the fuse. And, since we are somehow dealing with electricity here, wear rubber shoes while working with electricity.


· While fixing or examining electrical appliances, I think it is best to disconnect the device from the socket.


· Every homeowner must keep a chemical fire extinguisher at home. Most experts often advise avoiding using water to extinguish a fire caused by electricity. It is best to use a professional for electrical and gas work.


· Employ a drill that has a plastic body, as it will not conduct electricity. Also, remove the plug from the socket while fitting parts. And avoid wearing loose clothing or jewellery as they might get entangled in the drill.


· Check the ladders you are using. Note that ladders often cause several do-it-yourself accidents. So, before assembling a ladder, read the instructions carefully and produce according to the manufacturer's guidelines. It is always advised not to lean on one side as you may lose your balance while working.


· Whatever the job on hand, it is critical that you plan out your work carefully. Make sure that you can do it yourself; otherwise, hire a professional to do the tasks. Just consider your skills. Ask yourself if you really can take the job or not. Do not be in a hurry to complete the job. After all, this is not a race. Perhaps it is best to ask someone in your family or friends to help you out.


· If the job you are about to perform involves the disposal of dangerous material, it is best to contact your local environmental health department for advice.


After reading those tips, are you ready to start working on your home improvement plan yourself? For example, why don't you start working on your bathroom?


The Bathroom Revolution


Many homeowners start working on their home improvement projects in the bathroom to give their homes a new look. Do-it-yourself improvements for a bath, in the first place, not only provide you with your money's worth. It helps you make your bathroom terrific at the end of the effort.


How to spruce out your bathroom? Here are a few quick tips for you, do-it-yourselfer:


· Remove the white crust layer that has formed on your shower doors. You can use kitchen cleaner and CLR or calcium, lime and rust remover to do this. Given these materials, spray them on the shower doors and wipe them off. This will remove the crust layer immediately.


· Clean fixtures in the bathroom. Use a CLR bathroom and kitchen cleaner to remove soap and mineral deposits. You are giving those fixtures a new lease of life by doing this.


· Clean the showerhead. Note that over some time, the showerhead loses most of its showering ability as it gets clogged with scale deposits. So, instead of replacing it, clean it using a CLR bathroom and warm water mixture. All you need to do in the preparation is blend an equal amount of CLR and warm water in a cup and immerse the showerhead in it for a few minutes. After that, wash it thoroughly. The CLR is often recommended for such use as it has the power to remove clogs, and the showerhead, in the end, will work like a new one.


· Do some changes to the bathroom decors. If possible, replace or add things to the bathroom. For example, you can add a potted plant, change the artwork hanging on the walls, use a new soap dish, or change the colour and prints of towels.


· Finally, paint the walls of the bathroom in a new colour. When you do this, you are renewing the bathroom.


That's it!  


Now, look at the other do-it-yourself home improvement tips, starting with sanding, staining, home refinishing, and some DIY lighting and window treatment ideas.


DIY Sanding


Many homeowners plan their do-it-yourself home improvement projects with some sanding processes. But, what is sanding? Sanding has to be prepared to receive the stain, which is the last stage that gives the furniture its new look. According to some resources, staining wood can bring out the natural colour, feel, and grain of the wood. It can improve the beauty of old furniture in the house and give the entire room a new lease of life. However, to see such effects, sanding must be considered. Though time-consuming, it is an essential step in staining.


Here are a few pointers to help you through the sanding process:


For delicate furniture and a fine finish, experts recommend using hand sanding. Here, it would be best to make sandpaper pieces that are large enough to hold with three fingers.  

If you find it more comfortable, wrap a piece of sandpaper around a block of wood that you can quickly grasp. You could also employ a contoured sanding block that is readily available in most hardware stores. Perhaps it is worth noting that the union has grooves at the end of the league, and it is on those grooves where you can insert the sandpaper.  


Inspect the surface of the wood to be sanded. That's one of the most important rules to be considered. You can see pores in the wood that form a pattern by doing it. Note that these pores are the grain of the wood. So, sand in the direction of the grain, but never against it. As commonly noted, sanding against the grain will cause scratches that will show up on finished wood, especially after staining.


The next step is to place the sanding block horizontally on the surface with the wood grain. Hold the block firmly and apply pressure equally as you move the league too and froe. 

If you apply more pressure than needed to the block, it will, unfortunately, cause depressions on the surface. And even while employing the mechanical palm sander, you must hold the block flat against the surface and start exerting pressure on it evenly.


So, you're done with sanding? Before going through the following process, which is staining, the dust must be taken off the surface of the wood. You can use a tack cloth or cheesecloth made for removing dust. Once one side of the fabric gets dusty, refold it and use the fresh side of the material. And, since you will be working with wood dust, remember to use a sanding particle mask to prevent inhalation of dust, which may cause particular harm to yourself.


DIY Wood Staining


As mentioned earlier, staining adds colour to wood. It is typically in some minor home improvement projects to accentuate wood, improve the grain pattern, change the appearance of the wood, emphasize the finer points of the furniture, or make it look like another type of wood. Given this fact, it is necessary to do a spot test of the stain before applying it to the furniture. However, if you cannot obtain a scrap of wood that your furniture is made of, apply colour on the spot on the table that is not visible.


Note that three components make up stain: pigment, dyes and a carrier. In the first place, the airline decides whether the colour is oil-based or water-based. If you find out that the stain's test patch looks blotchy, you will have to use a conditioner on the wood. You can apply generous amounts of the required type of wood conditioner, either water-based or oil-based. This must be similar to the stain you are using. Then, apply the conditioner about a quarter-hour before staining. You can use strokes identical to a staining pad, brush or rag. Remove extra stain with a cloth. If you have completed the staining, let the dry wood overnight. And, if you want a darker shade, apply more paint. 

Note that once the stain dries up, it may look dull, but it will look bright again once the finish is applied.



DIY Home Refinishing


Perhaps one of the quickest and easiest ways to liven your bathroom or kitchen is to paint. Just one single coat will make a world of difference. You can consider and use paint to provide a sense of life to your cabinets and countertops, but you can also use it to refinish bathtubs, fibreglass fixtures, and bathroom tiles.


Considering a do-it-yourself refinishing is favourable that using a professional can be very expensive. It will help you save money and the fact that you can have the satisfaction of doing something great.  


For those interested in some DIY refinishing, here are some tips that could help you with how to go about refinishing your bath and cabinets. 

First, you may need the following tools and materials:


· Palm sander

· Spray gun with high volume and low pressure

· Sandpaper and masking tape paper

· Respirator to protect you from paint fumes

· EP-acrylic topcoat and refinishing coatings primer

· Fixing agent for tiles and porcelain, reducers and caulk

· Chemical cleaners


The Preparation


Preparing the surface to be refinished well is an essential move to obtain the best results from refinishing. You have the option to apply the chemical cleaners on all the characters that have to be refinished. And, speaking of chemical cleaners, there are two functions that these cleaners perform. First, they clean and eliminate the grease from your countertops, tiles, cabinets, and tubs. And second, they ready the refinishing surface for a chemical bonding agent, which will react with paint and touch, creating a durable finish for tile and porcelain.


When cleaning the refinishing surfaces, wash them off thoroughly and dry. Then, you need to sand the surface before you can paint it. Many experts commonly note that sanding roughens the surface a little that helps the bond of the coats. This can be discussed later in this article.


For roughening the surface, however, you need to use the palm sander as it will assist you in preparing an even surface, which is perfect for painting. 

Then, you can employ paper or masking tape to cover the spots you do not want to paint—for example, the ceiling edges.


Also, while refurnishing tiled surfaces or those made of porcelain, it is often recommended that you apply the chemical bonding agent Adhesion. 

You can apply this with paper towels or cheesecloth. Then, after applying, let it dry for five minutes and apply primer and topcoat.




One particular thing to note when the painting is that the EP-acrylic paint that is commonly recommended is acrylic polymer coating.  

Accordingly, this double component-refinishing product offers a beautiful and durable finish that will last years. Many homeowners apply this in their kitchens, tiles and bathtubs.


Such kind of paint offers many colour options for you to pick. You can even select a finish such as the semi-gloss, gloss or satin. Speaking of satin, it has been noted that this kind of finish is particularly best for countertops and cabinets, while a gloss finish is appropriate for tubs and tiles.


For primer mixing, it is just essential to follow specific directions carefully. Then, you can pout it into the paint and fix the spray gun. However, test the spray gun first on a piece of scrap wood for you to ensure that the flow and air pressure are proper. After doing the testing, you can start painting from the top of the surface that you are working on. One simple tip here is to move the spray gun backwards and forwards. And, if you want a smooth finish, make sure that every new stroke you've made overlaps about a quarter of the previous stroke. And, always note that the paint is toxic, so wear rubber gloves and protective glasses while working.


Lighting and Window Treatment DIY Ideas


While decorating the room's interior, don't forget to give enough time and effort to treat your windows and the lighting. Both elegant lighting and nicely done up windows can enhance the beauty of a room.


For a few tips on how to select lighting and do up windows to add to the character of the room, read the following:




When it comes to lighting, the first thing you can do is make sure that the lighting in the bedroom is softer than that in the kitchen and dining room. Then, if you need light to read in the bedroom, you have the option to use bedside lamps.


Also, you can install a small chandelier above your bed. According to some experts, this will add to the style and elegance of the room. Concerning this, it is often recommended that you use chandeliers that are modern in manner. Try to use ones with a burned gold finish made with round crystals. Small chandeliers can also be used to add character to any room.


You should read the instructions carefully before installing when it comes to installation. And, if you have any doubt about it, there's nothing with asking an electrician to do it for you.


Choose candle bulbs made of translucent glass when considering lighting. 

This will make the light look like natural candlelight. Now, isn't it interesting?


Seating Area Lighting


To add character to the seating area in your house here is what you can do:


· Use a ceiling fan with a light if your seating room needs light. According to some, this is one of the best options to take.


· Since light ceiling fans come in different styles, it is best that you can find one that suits the décor you have in your seating room.


· Note that the light from the fan will provide enough light needed for reading. Aside from that, the air supplied by the fan will make the room pleasant.


· add a dimmer to the ceiling fan light.


Window Treatment


To add a glimmer of elegance to your windows, consider these tips:


· Before buying any materials for your window, try first to measure each window. Always note that though windows look-alike from far, they may measure differently.


· Take ideas from magazines, paintings, and other resources, and adapt them to fit your home.


· Consider the colours. Coordinate them to match the rest of the room and the decors you have in the room.


· Use easy-care polyester. According to many experts, this fabric has a fine finish that looks like silk.


· Finally, select your window drapes with care, as they may substantially impact the way the room finally looks.


I think I have done my part – to give you some ideas on improving the appearance of your home. Note, however, that you don't need to work BY yourself even though you are considering those tasks by yourself. Instead, ask for some help from your friends or your family. Home improvement, after all, is not an easy task.







Larry Gaza

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