Homeownership often comes with a to-do list of maintenance and repairs. While some projects require professional expertise, there are plenty of common household repairs that you can tackle on your own. Not only will these quick fixes save you money, but they’ll also give you a sense of accomplishment. In this guide, we’ll explore several common household repairs and how you can easily do them yourself.
1. Patching Small Holes in Walls
Small holes and dings in your walls from accidents or nail holes are common in any home. To fix them, you’ll need a putty knife, spackling paste, and sandpaper. Simply apply the spackling paste, smooth it with the putty knife, let it dry, and sand it down. Once painted, your wall will look as good as new.
2. Unclogging Drains
A clogged drain in the kitchen or bathroom can be a nuisance. For minor clogs, you can use a plunger or a drain snake. Plunge the drain vigorously, or insert the snake and turn it clockwise to remove blockages. Remember to wear gloves and have a bucket nearby to catch any debris.
3. Fixing a Leaky Faucet
A dripping faucet can be not only annoying but wasteful. Typically, it’s a worn-out washer or O-ring that’s the culprit. Turn off the water supply to the faucet, disassemble it, replace the damaged parts, and reassemble. If you’re not sure about the faucet model, take the old parts to a hardware store to find a matching replacement.
4. Repairing a Running Toilet
A running toilet can waste a significant amount of water and money. The issue usually stems from a worn flapper, flush valve, or float. You can buy a toilet repair kit at a hardware store, follow the instructions, and replace the faulty components to stop the running water.
5. Replacing a Light Fixture
Upgrading a light fixture can refresh the look of a room. Turn off the power to the fixture, remove the old one, and connect the wires to the new fixture following the manufacturer’s instructions. Always use appropriate safety precautions when working with electrical components.
6. Installing a New Door Lock
Whether you’re upgrading for security or style, changing a door lock is a manageable DIY project. Remove the old lock, install the new one, and make sure it’s aligned properly. A well-functioning lock is essential for your home’s safety.
7. Sealing Gaps and Cracks
Gaps and cracks around windows and doors can lead to energy loss and drafts. Use caulk or weatherstripping to seal these gaps. Proper sealing helps maintain a comfortable indoor temperature and lowers your energy bills.
8. Replacing a Broken Tile
Broken tiles in your kitchen or bathroom can be an eyesore. To replace one, use a chisel to remove the old tile and adhesive. Apply adhesive and install the new tile, making sure it’s level and properly spaced. Once the adhesive dries, grout the area to complete the repair.
9. Fixing a Running Garbage Disposal
A malfunctioning garbage disposal is often due to clogs or jammed blades. First, unplug or disconnect the power. Insert an Allen wrench into the disposal’s bottom and turn it counterclockwise to free the blades. If there’s a clog, use pliers or a disposal tool to clear it. Reconnect the power and test the disposal.
10. Lubricating Squeaky Hinges
Squeaky door hinges can be an annoyance, but they’re easily fixed with some lubricant. Apply a lubricant like WD-40 to the hinge pin and move the door back and forth to distribute the lubricant evenly.