Keeping your house in good shape can take a lot of work. In fact, it could reach a point at which it feels as though your home has become a work site for various professionals. Apart from the inconvenience that calling professionals for every necessary repair might cause you and your family, there’s also the impact on finances to think about. An easy solution to this could be making a list of some DIY home repairs that you can work on yourself. This will simply take a willing spirit, some free time, and a number of regular tools that you either already have or that you can purchase quite affordably from the nearest hardware store.
1. Painting the Interior
Over time, the interior of your home is going to get faded, stained, or even branded with abstract art if you have creative children. This has an effect on the entire house, and most people call a house painting company at this point. You can take a different route, however, and add this to your list of DIY home repairs. That’s because painting a house is not something that’s too hard to do for someone who’s willing. You can find tons of helpful instructions online if you look, and you might even come across a video tutorial by a local painter.
This is the first item on this list of DIY home repairs because it’s easy, safe, and takes just a few basic and affordable tools. If you stop by a good paint store, you can get the things that you need for this project. These include brushes, paint rollers, pans, clean-up equipment, and of course the paint itself. Choose a color and shade that you’re not likely to get tired of looking at in a short time and have to repaint the walls sooner than you may have planned to. When this project is done, you’ll be blown away by the way something so easy and economical can make as big a difference as it does.
2. Laying Plank Flooring
Something else to add to your list of DIY home repairs is laying plank flooring. This is another project that can make a massive improvement to your home’s appearance, and it’s also quite safe to do. To start with, you’ll need to remove old flooring and check to ensure that the subfloor is level and doesn’t have damage. This means that you should fill any divots or cracks with a concrete patcher if the subfloor is concrete. For a plywood subfloor, use a floor-leveling compound to fill any spaces and ensure that the entire surface is even.
The next steps are installing underlayment to absorb sounds and also additionally level the subfloor, after which you can prepare to lay down the plank flooring. Measure the room and then lay the first row of laminate, which could be something like engineered oak flooring. If the area is not too big and there’s no serious damage to the subfloor, you may not actually need to get vinyl flooring services or hire any other professionals. This is another project for which you can find a number of free instructions on how to do it online.
3. Re-Grouting Tiles
Over time, the grout between tiles can get discolored or even damaged as a result of constant use and exposure to dirt or staining materials. This is one of the DIY home repairs that could be the most satisfying for you to do. That’s because the final result will be well worth it and make a massive impact to the rest of your home. You can check online to see if there are any tile flooring contractors who’ve shared some important information on this task, including helpful tips.
This task may be time-consuming, but it actually just takes two steps to be done. The first step is removing the old grout with a combination of using an oscillating tool alongside manual scraping. The second step is to mix and apply the new grout, something that can be made considerably easier by using a grout float. To do a safe job, avoid the areas where the tile intersects with other surfaces like door frames, countertops, and another floor so that you don’t weaken them. You could also install a tile enclosure for the floor and walls of your bathroom to make the space look professional and neat.
4. Fixing Water Leaks
Water leaks around the house do a lot more than run the risk of causing stains around the house. They also wastewater, making your home less efficient and seeing you pay for water that’s gone to waste. This is a great item to add to your list of DIY home repairs so that you don’t have to call residential plumbers to come and fix them for you. Start by figuring out what the specific projects are and then check for instructions and tips on how to fix them that have been shared online by plumbers.
While each specific leak may call for a specific fix from residential plumbers at some point in the process, there are some general instructions that you can make use of. These instructions require that you begin by turning off the water supply to the leaking outlet that you want to repair. Next, clean the pipes and dry them up properly, so you find the specific source of the leak. Once you find it, you can patch it up using silicone tape, plumber’s tape, epoxy putty, self-fusing pipe tape, or even a rubber sleeve. Finally, clamp the leak and you’ll have done a proper job and eliminated the need to look for plumbing services.
5. Replacing Old and Worn Fixtures
Another easy item to consider adding to your list of DIY home repairs is replacing old and worn-out fixtures around the house. These may be prone to leaks and call for frequent repairs that will consume a lot of your time and patience. Additionally, old fixtures may be tarnished, faded, or even broken, presenting an unattractive image in your house. Hit the market and shop for modern fixtures that are going to upgrade both the function and appeal of the spaces that they’re in.
To begin with, double-check the dimensions and other specifics of any fixtures that you intend to get. The thread size and diameter are the two most important things for you to check on this note. Some tools that you’ll likely need are a basin wrench, a pipe wrench, silicone caulk, a plumber’s putty, and a screwdriver of the right dimensions. You also need replacements for relevant accessories that could either be damaged or missing, including nuts and bolts, and rubber O rings.
6. Fixing Doors and Windows
Problematic doors and windows around the house could cause you considerable discomfort and even impact your home’s energy efficiency negatively. That said, most of the things that could go wrong are actually easy enough for you to fix yourself as part of DIY home repairs. By noting these issues down and getting the supplies that you need to fix them together, you can handle a number of them in a single afternoon, improving your home significantly.
One of the issues you may face is having the doors and windows stuck and unable to latch. This could be caused by a number of things, including the settling of the house, humidity, or a lot of paint. That said, the specific fix that you need to make will depend on the cause of the issue. For matters to do with humidity, install or replace weatherstripping and lubricate seized hinges. For issues to do with the house settling, you’ll need to flatten the affected edges and reduce their width. As a crucial follow-up, call a foundation expert to check the foundation and ensure that it’s not damaged, as this is one of the things that could lead to a house settling.
7. Cleaning the Gutters
Cleaning the gutters is a task that can’t be left out of this list of DIY home repairs. That’s because, while not necessarily an actual repair project, it’s a part of preventative maintenance. Failure to do it as often as is necessary can leave you with damage to a number of elements in the house. Clogged gutters won’t be able to drain water off the roof as fast as they need to, and they may also fail to deposit it in the right place. As such, keep up with this task by ensuring that as each season ends, your gutters are clean and clear of debris.
To perform this task safely, you should have a stable ladder and know the right way to use it. A hand brush with hard bristles will help you lift the debris without damaging the roof or gutters themselves while a scoop or trowel will be useful for lifting compacted dirt. Remember to clean the downspouts by removing the downspout strainers as well as the gutter elbow and cleaning those thoroughly. This task will be easier and safer to do on a dry day as opposed to a rainy one.
8. Replacing Damaged Window Screens
Another great item to add to your list of DIY home repairs is replacing or fixing damaged window screens. These help keep your home free of bugs and such. That said, they can lead to discomfort when damaged, not to add to the fact that they’re an eyesore when in bad shape. Depending on the specific material that the screen is made for, there are various steps that you can take to fix it. Whatever the case, window screens are light and made with simple mechanics that are easy to figure out by simply looking at the screen.
9. Unclogging Drains
Clogged drains in residential properties are typically a result of grease and grime, which is easy enough to handle as a part of your DIY home repairs. The solution in this case, however, doesn’t lie at the bottom of a bottle of drain-cleaning fluid. At least not the solution that will be effective while also being safe for the environment. There are a few alternative solutions in this case, one of which is using a plunger to manually dislodge the clog. Another effective solution is using a drain snake which is very effective for clogs caused by an accumulation of hair in the drains.
10. Plastering Surface Cracks in the Walls
Another great item that belongs to this list of DIY home repairs is plastering surface cracks in your home’s walls. The first step for this project involves making sure that the cracks are on the surface and don’t reach too deep into the wall. Deep cracks indicate a structural issue that needs the expertise of a trained professional who can get to the root of the matter and solve the problem the right way. Generally, cracks resulting from structural issues are wider than three millimeters. They usually start in the corner of the wall and come down at an angle, but they can also run across the wall horizontally.
Once you ascertain that a crack isn’t a result of structural issues, you can repair it with some plaster and a coat of paint. Visit your nearest hardware store and ask them what they recommend for filling cracks in the wall. Let them know the material that your wall is made of so that they can make the right suggestions. Once you fill the cracks, you’ll need to paint the entire wall because painting a small patch will leave some discoloration.
These are 10 of the projects around the house that you can DIY with ease and familiarize yourself with working on house repairs. They can help you learn some of the basics of renovation projects, enabling you to save money down the road as you handle various projects yourself. In addition, you’ll also enjoy the gratification of knowing that you’ve had a direct role to play in keeping your home in great shape. This could make you a proud homeowner, giving you the chance to teach your children these skills as well and equip them for the future.