When you own your own home, you quickly realize that things don’t stay as they did at the time of purchase. The gorgeous paint treatment that once adorned your walls, overtime, show signs of age and wear. Lots of things things may start breakdown, and hail and winds can cause your roof to leak. 

Part of the responsibility of home ownership is that it’s you that’s on the hook for the expense to repair these things. It’s your bank balance that’s that is going to feel the hit. 

Making repairs are a part of the territory when it comes to home ownership. Therefore, it’s a good idea to get familiar with small home repairs so that you don’t have to pay a contractor for the every single repair that needs to be made. It’s not just their time that you’ll pay for, but also the cost of materials. That can be a significant blow to your bank account.

Here are four home repairs/updates that you should learn to handle on your own.

Painting Like A Pro

Person holding paint roller on wall
Photo by Malte Luk on Pexels

When you own a house, you can expect to have to repaint interior walls every few years. It could be because you just want a fresh new look and painting instantly transforms a room. Other times a wall has to be painted because there has been damage from furniture rubs, roughhousing children, or pet accidents. Whatever your your reasons, knowing the process for painting a room will help.

When it comes to painting, preparation is king. First, you need to lay down drop cloths on the floor to absorb any spilled paint and prevent it from damaging your floors. Second, you need to remove fixtures and fittings so that they don’t get in the way. Don’t try to paint around outlet and light switch covers! It’s tons easier to remove them and then paint. Cover the outlets and switches with painters tape so when you replace the covers everything is clean. Cover permanent light fixtures as well- paint spatter can go further than you think.

Finally, you need to clean the walls with a damp sponge to remove any dust or grease from the wall, leaving a clean, smooth surface to which you can apply paint. 

Now you’re ready to apply your paint. Choose your finish accordingly, semi-gloss is typically used in kitchens and bathrooms for easy clean up. Use a scrubbable satin or eggshell finish for other rooms.

Use a brush to cut-in the edges of the walls- meaning just brush the area like a frame- come in about six inches. Then you simply fill in the open area using a paint roller with a nap appropriate for the texture of your wall. Your hardware store paint professional can help you decide what is best. Using a “W” stroke will keep the paint from leaving “stripes” as you paint.

Door Maintenance

Building metal house architecture
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We rarely think about the doors in our house until there is an issue. Door squeaking is the major problem you’ll encounter. This usually occurs when there is not enough lubrication in the hinges. The noise is created by friction in the flex in the hinge door assembly. Applying a little grease to the affected area according to WD-40 should fix it right up. However, if the noise persists, you may need to replace the entire hinge mechanism. For most doors, all you need to do is unscrew the faulty hinge and replace it with one that is similar. 

If your door is catching on the floor, or hitting the door jamb it could that the hinge is broken or the attaching screw hole is stripped out. If you can lift the door and get it to close without hitting, you likely have a hinge issue. Many times the hole into which the hinge is screwed can get stripped out. A wooden golf tee can save the day. Just apply some wood glue to the tee and insert it into the stripped hole. After it dries, cut it flush and then screw the hinge back into place. This should pull the door back up into the proper angle to shut just fine.

Applying Caulk

Once you’ve owned a property for several years, you’ll likely find the need to reapply caulk in bathrooms or around windows.  This sticky white substance’s primary role is to seal gaps around your home where water could penetrate and cause damage due to wood swell and such. The caulk around kitchen and bathroom faucets can wear away over time and need to be resealed. Bathroom tile caulk can also let go where the tiles meet the bathtub. 

Fortunately, learning to caulk is pretty simple, once you understand how caulking guns work. To load the caulk tube, just pull the plunger on the gun back and insert tube. Push the plunger until it’s tight against the tube. Cut the tip of the tube to the size of the bead of caulk you want, and pull the trigger. 

Unblocking The Toilet

There is no worse feeling than when you flush the toilet and you don’t see the water swirl down but start to fill the bowl. Panic city! You should definitely have a flange plunger next to the toilet just in case. Check to be sure the flange is extended then push the plunger into the drain opening. Push and pull quickly on the handle for about 20 seconds without lifting the plunger out of the drain. this will hopefully clear the clog.

If the plunger method doesn’t work, you can use a toilet auger, available from most hardware stores. Insert the end of the auger into the drain and turn the handle until you feel resistance. Rotate the auger against the blockage until you feel it break free.

The One Thing You Can’t Repair Yourself

There are many things around your home you can repair. But there are some that you can’t.  

If your home has experienced storm damage due to high winds and hail, you are likely not going to be able to make those repairs yourself. According to https://avidusroofing.com/, storm damage like missing or damaged roof shingles is best left to professionals.

Hail damaged roofs are very common where I live. You may not even realize it and that’s why a professional inspection by a reputable roofing company is recommended. High winds can cause large tree branches to fall and scrape across your roof taking with it shingles and flashing. It’s not long until you’ll see signs of water damage from leaks caused by unknown roof damage. 

Age can also cause roof shingles to fail. If you bought a house and have no idea how old the roof is, it’s not a bad idea to get an inspection. If you wait until the next storm, you may wind up with damage that will cost into the thousands to repair. It won’t just be the cost of replacing the roof, but the cost of repairing the damage caused by the roof failure.

In other words, it’s better to be safe than sorry.

Take on the repairs you can but leave the others to the pros!

It’s your home and you should feel confident to make many repairs yourself. I hope these tips have added to your knowledge bank and have helped you feel like you are up to the task. 

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