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Need to know how to fix a leaky faucet, stop a squeak or paint your porch? No project or renovation job is too small for National Home Improvement Expert, Danny Lipford, and seasoned contractor and author, Joe Truini. Danny and Joe host the Today's Homeowner Podcast each week — sharing the latest tips and practical advice to help you have the best–looking house on the block. If you are looking for REAL solutions for REAL homeowners, the Today's Homeowner Podcast is the place for you.
 
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Homeowners have plenty of options to create their backyard paradise. A traditional concrete patio or wooden deck is simple and functional, or you can show off your style with something like a brick paver patio. But styles and trends change as the years go by, and nothing lasts forever. That's the concern for Vic, who lives in a 1970s home in Hickor…
 
Squirrels can be entertaining and they always seem to be the first in line at the bird feeders. But these furry little entertainers are NOT that friendly when it comes to your home. Squirrels are often responsible for damaged wood around your house where they chew through to gain access into the attic. They even chew up lead roofing pipes just to s…
 
When you spend the time and effort to make your house look good on the outside, you don’t want something like a dull, gray patio to take away from its beauty. Making concrete complement your home is easy. First, clean the concrete thoroughly. You can use specialized concrete cleaners or use a pressure washer to remove any trace of dirt, mold and mi…
 
Because they sit idle all winter, lawn mowers are often neglected tools. But taking care of a few maintenance chores early in the year will ensure that your mower works well for you all summer. First, check the air filter. If it's the paper type replace it. The foam type can be washed with soap and water. When it dries condition it with a drop or t…
 
Many of the cleaners we use for our bathrooms use bleach and other harsh chemicals to disinfect and cut through soap scum but this chore doesn’t have to be an assault on your sinuses. You can make a great cleaner that will disinfect and deodorize by simply mixing a one-to-one solution of vinegar and water in a spray bottle. Once clean and dry, coat…
 
Even great paint won’t stay on a house long if the surface isn’t properly prepared before it’s applied. So, a little extra work up front will save lots of work later. Paint won’t stick well on a dirty surface, so the first order of business is cleaning. Tri Sodium Phosphate mixed with water makes a great cleaner for painted surfaces, but be sure yo…
 
A dryer vent booster fan on a roof vent can save you money and time when doing laundry. Listen to this week's podcast to hear how. Also on this episode: Fixing a gap in concrete, Removing wrinkles from carpet, Brightening up a dark wood den, Setting a fence post, Best New Product The Defiant Wi-Fi and Bluetooth-enabled outdoor smart plug gives you …
 
Everyone knows you need sunscreen to protect your skin from the harmful UV rays of the sun. The same principle applies to a wooden fence; but instead of burning, the wood will turn gray, warp, crack or cup. The solution begins with a thorough cleaning. Use a detergent made especially for fences or decks and a pressure washer to remove the dirt, alg…
 
Almost every home has special trim work outside. From brick moulding around doors and windows, boards that outline the eaves, or exterior crown moulding ….this trim has a way of adding definition and style to a home. But, because these are wood pieces on the outside, they’re constantly under the barrage of Mother Nature. Both weather conditions and…
 
The difficult things about painting a door when it’s vertical are the drips and runs that always happen. If you take the door down and paint it horizontally, you solve that problem but that means you have to wait for one side of the door to dry before you can paint the other. The solution is a simple one. Drive two 3-inch screws into the bottom of …
 
We aren’t the only ones who get more active in warmer weather, so it’s no surprise when the ants go marching one-by-one across your kitchen countertop. You grab the ant spray, give them a blast or two and wind up throwing away food and cleaning up a toxic, smelly mess of insect spray. If that sounds familiar,there’s good news because there are safe…
 
Every Spring the hood of my truck turns yellow for several weeks because the pollen in the air is so thick. That's no fun for folks with hay fever and allergies but it also makes a mess of porches, patios and decks. The problem is that the pollen is so fine that sweeping or dusting only stirs it up to land somewhere else. The only answer is to wash…
 
Window screens seem to be a magnet for dust, dirt and cobwebs, but because they are also somewhat fragile, cleaning them can be a pain. The best way to do the job is to submerge them in soapy water. But how? Well, a child’s pool will work for smaller screens but for larger ones you can build your own pool. Nail four 2x4s together, each about 6 feet…
 
Lawn plug aerators are a great tool to get your yard looking its best. But before you start giving your lawn some breathing room, make sure your sprinklers won’t get damaged. Listen to this week’s podcast to learn how. Also on this episode: Repairing a Drywall Nail Pop, Getting Rid of Squirrels in an Attic, Solving Low Water Pressure in a Bathroom …
 
Before you fire up the grill this summer, be sure it’s clean. Not just to impress your guests, but to keep it safe. Grease build-up in a grill leads to those nasty flare-ups that are dangerous and can ruin a good steak. On a gas grill, that means first cleaning the drip pan and the shields over the burners. For a charcoal model emptying the old ash…
 
Crazy snow and ice storms, monster hurricanes, golf ball-sized hail, extreme heat and torrential downpours. Homeowners everywhere face unique climate challenges. In this special Today’s Homeowner podcast, I'm talking with Renee Ramey, Executive Director of the Metal Roofing Alliance. We're setting the record straight on how metal roofs hold up in e…
 
Paint and varnish can go bad or dry up even in a tightly sealed can because there’s always some air trapped inside the can. So, a half full paint can... is also half full of air. And that air causes the paint to dry and form a skin on its surface. Next time you seal a partial can try this: Carefully push a layer of plastic wrap down onto the surfac…
 
Whether you call it kitchen soffit or furr down, here’s what you need to consider before removing it. Also on this episode: Retiling a Bathroom Floor Resurfacing a Basement Killing Mold Under a House Best New Product The Hampton Smart Fan not only lets you control the breeze but lighting as well! Simple Solutions Keyhole slot tip — Many electrical …
 
Caulk not only improves the appearance of a paint job, it also seals out moisture and drafts. But sometimes caulk joints fail because the crack they cover is too wide. If a gap is more than a quarter inch wide you'll want to first fill the void with a product called “backer rod.” This material is essentially a roll of foam rubber rope that's availa…
 
A rain barrel is a great tool to replace that water usage because it allows you to harvest rainfall to water the landscape. Start with a sturdy 32 gallon plastic garbage can. Drill a hole near the bottom to install a spigot so you can attach a garden hose to it later. You’ll need rubber washers on the inside and outside to seal it. Next cut a hole …
 
One of the challenges for people who like to garden is finding space to store their tools. Particularly long handled tools like rakes, hoes and shovels. Try this. Buy several threaded eye hooks and several “J “ hooks at the hardware store. Screw the eye hooks into the ends of the tool handles and screw the “J” hooks into the ceiling joists in your …
 
Toilets account for a quarter of the water used in the average home. Older toilets use up to five gallons of water per flush, three times that of newer models. But, if you’ve priced the new water saving toilets you know you‘ll have to spend several hundred dollars to replace each toilet in your home. The solution may be a simple conversion kit. It …
 
It was a common practice to use materials that contained asbestos in them in home construction prior to the mid-to-late 1970’s. There are very specific guidelines for asbestos removal, however, according to the EPA, it is also perfectly safe to encapsulate the asbestos. For flooring, this means you can install directly over the old material as long…
 
Johanna Carr from Maryland wants to add an attached garage to her home. A stacked stone-block retaining wall runs along the side of her house, and she’s wondering if she can build a new wall up against it. Listen to learn the solution! Also on this episode: Organizing a Garage Painting Tile and Grout Repairing a Crack in a Driveway Venting a Bathro…
 
Replacing a faulty water heater is both expensive and aggravating, but you can extend the life of your water heater life by draining the tank and flushing away sediment at least once a year. Here's all you do: For electric heaters, turn off the power at the breaker box… for gas units, turn the fuel control to the pilot setting. Next, turn off the c…
 
Solar water heating systems are a great way to reduce energy use and save money on utility bills. These systems allow you to take advantage of the sun’s natural heat and transfer it to the water in your home. Solar water heating systems won’t provide all the hot water you need, unless you live in an extreme southern climate, but for most folks, the…
 
Whether it’s a burst pipe or a roof leak, you wind up with an ugly water stain on the wall or ceiling. While there are some good stain-blocking paints on the market, they don’t always work as well as you think. As the coat of paint dries, the water stain begins to bleed through again. The solution is to encapsulate the stain with an impenetrable ba…
 
Kids love to help with home improvement projects, but it’s often a challenge finding something that will catch their attention and suit their skills. So try this one on for size. Make your own customized stepping stones for a pathway or garden decoration. First you’ll need a form, and the top 2 or 3 inches of an old five gallon bucket works great. …
 
Lots of homeowners dream of using that extra space in the basement for a game room, a home theater or entertaining space… but it’s important to correct any moisture issues first. In other words, stop the leaks before you make improvements. You can tell if moisture is coming into the basement by taping a piece of clear plastic to the wall or floor a…
 
If replacing an ugly bathtub isn’t in your budget, try painting it with a do-it-yourself refinishing kit. The prep work might be grueling, but the payoff is worth it! Listen to this week's podcast for more details. Also on this episode: Fixing Front Porch Cracks Changing Brick Color Painting Dark Wood Paneling What to Ask When Contracting a House P…
 
When the screws that hold a door hinge in place get loose, you notice it pretty quickly. The door rattles and doesn’t close the way it should….so you break out a screwdriver and fix the problem…you think. But because these screws are holding the weight of the door they’re under a lot of tension, and it’s not uncommon for them to wallow out the wood…
 
Kitchen remodeling is still one of the most popular home improvement projects, and it’s also one of the most expensive. You may not be able to afford to start from scratch, but there are several low-cost changes you can make to breathe new life into your kitchen without breaking the bank. If you’re willing to provide the elbow grease, a fresh coat …
 
Removing unwanted and unpleasant odors in your house doesn’t mean you have to spray harsh chemicals everywhere …you just have to go to the source. If you have carpet AND pets, chances are you’ve got some unwanted odors under foot. Here’s a simple solution. Sprinkle baking soda all over the carpet and then lightly mist it with water. Then scrub the …
 
Do you ever get frustrated removing those stickers from new tools or appliances? Take an electric heat gun, set it to “low,” and use it to warm up the sticker. Within just a few seconds, the heat will soften the adhesive and you’ll be able to peel off the sticker. (If you don’t own a heat gun, try using a blow dryer.) For stickers larger than, say …
 
Gasoline is one of the most flammable – and dangerous - liquids around. Its vapors are completely invisible, very heavy, and can travel from room to room without anyone knowing. That's why you should never store gasoline in your basement or inside your home. Always keep gasoline cool, completely sealed in an approved safety container and out of rea…
 
Small window air conditioner units overall are more efficient than they were a decade ago, but you want to take these things into account before you buy one. Listen to this week’s podcast to learn what to look for. Also on this episode: Repairing Cracks in Stucco Recreating This Accent Wall Replacing a Whole House Generator Advice on Range Hood Exh…
 
When you sit down on a toilet, the last thing you want is to rock from side-to-side. In many cases, a simple plastic wedge placed under the toilet, followed by a bead of caulk around the base where the toilet meets the floor will solve the problem. Sometimes, it’s just a loose toilet bolt that needs to be tightened. But, if the bolt is spinning in …
 
While a home’s crawl space can be home to a vast amount of spiders, bugs and other kinds of undesirable guests, it can also be an unwelcome source of moisture. As ground moisture migrates upward, it can become trapped underneath the house leading to possible structural damage. I’ve even seen it begin to buckle hardwood floors inside. Putting a simp…
 
Water is one of the single biggest enemies to a home - especially water produced from rain or melting snow. Poor drainage around a home will cause soil to erode or swell around the foundation. Either situation can cause problems and create cracks over windows and doors. Plus an excess of moisture around and beneath a house will also threaten siding…
 
The time to start feeding the grass is early in the spring so that it will be really healthy by the time it gets really hot. First, consider using an organic fertilizer to boost growth rather than a chemical mix. These products reduce the possibility of “burning” the grass and they don't have to be watered after application. Regardless of the produ…
 
Finding the right way to border flower beds to keep the lawn from encroaching on them is a common problem. The challenge is finding something flexible, effective and easy to work with... that doesn't cost a fortune. Try recycling leftover paver blocks. If you don't have any around the house you can usually buy them secondhand in the classifieds for…
 
John Oozoonian is installing some outdoor flooring for a friend. He wants to know the best way to lay down porcelain tile on a concrete porch and walkway. Listen to learn how. Also on this episode: Danny’s Soil Mixture Recommendation for Raised Beds Cleaning a Long Dryer Vent Daich’s Tracsafe Anti-Slip Color Coat Installing Cable Deck Railing on a …
 
Spring is a great time for outdoor projects, but often the process of building a pergola or pathway causes damage to the lawn the project is intended to help you enjoy. All the traffic from feet and wheelbarrows beats the grass down and piles of dirt from post holes smother it. So plan to protect it. Before you dig holes for posts or planting... la…
 
Since your mower’s been sitting idle for the last few months, it will need a little attention before you fire it up this Spring. First, remove the spark plug wire before you check the blade for sharpness and balance. If the blade is dull, remove and sharpen it. A dull blade will simply tear the grass instead of making a clean cut, and THAT can lead…
 
Choosing the right type of paint can be just as important as picking a color. One problem every home encounters is exposure to sunlight. UV rays will cause paint to fade, chalk and lose its original tint. Latex paint tends to resist these effects better than oil-based paints. Another enemy of outside wood is moisture. Wood exposed to wet conditions…
 
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