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September 14

Remedy for carpenter ants in the home
I've been watching build up of moop from ants dining on my carport for a few years now. What can I do to remove these critters as they've seemed impervious to my attempt to remove them so far. [more inside]
posted by diode at 3:42 PM - 8 answers

September 12

Mystery Bugs Menace Kitchen
So I have a lot of these bugs in my kitchen. [more inside]
posted by vibrotronica at 3:47 PM - 4 answers

A non-slip bath tub mat that actually doesn't slip?
You know those mats you put on the floor of the bath tub so you don't slip? Bought one and it's slipped once or twice. So is there a particular brand of these mats that you've bought and it has never, ever once slipped, say for years? The wife needs one that we can pretty much guarantee will never, ever slip. I'm not looking for "Oh just go buy one," but "We bought this specific mat x years ago and it's worked like a champ, through all sorts of soapy water, buy this one." Alternative suggestions for preventing slippage in the bathtub while showering are fine.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 6:18 AM - 17 answers

September 11

Suggestions on reducing traffic noise in a high rise apartment?
Anyone have any suggestions for sound dampening in a high rise apt near a freeway? [more inside]
posted by HonestAsian at 10:01 PM - 10 answers

Aziz! Light bulbs!
Why do these light bulbs keep dying? [more inside]
posted by purple_bird at 11:54 AM - 9 answers

September 10

Another one bites the dust
Instead of hand washing as I clearly should have, I ran two toaster oven pans through the dishwasher (bottom rack.) They were a light metal, probably aluminum. When they came out of the dishwasher they were covered in a fine gray/silver dust that came off on fingers and paper towels. The pans did not seem salvageable because the metal dust just kept coming off them. What happened chemically/physically (other than simply the pans breaking down), and is there going to be Bad Metal Dust hanging out in the dishwasher now?
posted by third rail at 4:50 PM - 5 answers

Anyone ever dealt with getting cracked brick house walls fixed?
My brick house has a number of cracks in its walls. We got the house inspected when we bought it, and the inspector said the cracks were worth taking care of, but weren't really serious. The cracks were repaired in the past, some of them repeatedly. Pics are here: [more inside]
posted by Slinga at 4:32 PM - 7 answers

September 9

Is my new window AC a hazard or am I just being a worrywort?
I just got a window AC for my stuffy studio that never gets any airflow. I live in a very old brick building and the wooden window frame is TORE UP...likely from previous window AC units. I could only get one of the three screws to tie into the lower sash that attaches to the top of the unit (it's the center screw, if that matters). How likely is it that it might dislodge itself and fall six storeys down? Is this something I should natter at my landlord about? [more inside]
posted by smirkette at 4:37 PM - 7 answers

Weird faucet odor, vinegar edition
Our house's faucets occasionally smell like vinegar. What's causing that? [more inside]
posted by pepper bird at 5:33 AM - 7 answers

How To Repair A Steel Security Door?
No idea how it happened, but there's a rip in our steel security door. Is this something that can be repaired? [more inside]
posted by Joey Michaels at 1:50 AM - 5 answers

September 8

Help me find a house inspector in Phoenix
Anyone have recommendations on a house inspector/inspection company in Phoenix? Currently the house we are buying has had a "relocation property inspection" done by a relocation company (seller is moving away and his company is relocating him along with providing this report). I think we probably need to get a full inspection done, but would like some referrals if anyone has any. Or anyone have any opinions on if another inspection should be necessary? My relator says his inspection guy is $375 and said that in this situation, it maybe worth it to just save the $375 but it was up to me. Thanks!
posted by gregjunior at 2:55 PM - 5 answers

Ice maker dispensing door will not open
My ice maker makes ice (yeah) and the auger will turn when depressing the plate on the front of the refrig door. But the little trap door will not open to let the ice drop down. Do I have to replace the whole ice maker or is there any trick to fixing this myself? [more inside]
posted by shaarog at 10:37 AM - 5 answers

Please help me be ok with the prospect of being a life-long renter.
Through a series of unfortunate events and choices, I've reached middle age without being able to purchase a house (I'm single, if it matters). It looks like my financial situation won't change in the forseeable future and I'm carrying a significant load of personal debt. [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 3:07 AM - 60 answers

Help me haul this heavy computer up into my attic
I recently moved into a new flat which has a (mostly) finished attic space. I’d love to use this room as a study – but there’s a problem. I have a large and very heavy desktop computer, and the only way into the room is up an extendible ladder... [more inside]
posted by Ted Maul at 2:53 AM - 28 answers

September 7

Basement + neighbour + bedbugs = flipout?
The guy who lives in the basement our of shared house brought a second hand mattress into the unit that was infested with bedbugs. The entire house has been heat treated once, and his unit has been heat treated three times. How do we even begin to decide if we need to move out? [more inside]
posted by slipperywhenwet at 4:26 PM - 19 answers

How to remove the overpowering rubber smell from solid tires on handcart
I recently bought a preowned hand truck with fairly new solid tires. The smell is incredibly strong and considerably more offensive than the smell of, say, the showroom of a tire shop with doors to the work area wide open. In addition to the smell of rubber there is an intensely rancid odor. It's both disgusting and pervasive. A week after bringing the hand truck home my car smells like it's still in there. Eww. Any ideas? Thanks!
posted by carriest at 8:42 AM - 6 answers

September 6

Replacement handle bolts for Black and Decker electric lawnmower?
My Black and Decker cordless electric lawnmower (model number CMM1000, Type 4) has an adjustable handle held together by four bolts with screw-on knobs. Two of the bolts and knobs have been lost. "Universal handle bolts" (the only thing I can find at the hardware store or on Amazon) do not fit, and I can't find replacement handle bolts on the Black and Decker website. Where can I find the right kind of handle bolts and knobs for this mower? Photos of bolts and knobs inside. [more inside]
posted by snowmentality at 3:23 PM - 4 answers

September 5

Thse pictures were taken 100 years ago. But where?
These two pictures were taken somewhere close to Boston, MA, probably in Malden, but possibly in Chelsea or Revere. Can you tell me the address of the house? [more inside]
posted by Right On Red at 7:24 PM - 7 answers

Doing so well with appliances today!
Well, I just accidentally ran our microwave for about 4-5 minutes, with nothing in it. Did I wreck it? Is it a Dangerous Microwave now? [more inside]
posted by Coatlicue at 6:56 PM - 8 answers

Help me get wireless TV, or at least not have guests break their legs?
Please help me understand my options for a wireless TV setup so I'm not sued by people tripping over the cable strung across the room and breaking their legs. I have DISH but they've been no help when I try to talk to them and paying $150 for a technician to come out and answer the question is absurd. [more inside]
posted by marylynn at 12:39 PM - 9 answers

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