Questions in the Home & Garden category.
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March 16

How to handle hardwood floor damage with landlords?

I am moving out of my current rental soon after several years. The property has light hardwood floors with a dark polyurethane(?) coating. I have a dog (approved by landlord), and from the dog plus furniture moving there are several places where at least the coating is scratched or worn away. However, there were also several spots when I moved in. Should I bring this up with the landlord directly and offer to recoat the floors, or just have them decide what to do about it? Complicating factors below. [more inside]
posted by RobotNinja at 9:06 AM - 19 answers

March 15

Cheap Canvas Awning Replacement for house

I have a pair of fairly ratty canvas awnings (on aluminum or steel frames) on my house. They're maybe 2 feet by 2 feet by 1 foot, so not that big. The canvas is shot and I'm hoping to get new ones. I just got a quote and it was almost $1000 for the two, just replacing the canvas. I have some other quotes coming, but is there a cheap alternative here? Could I just find a local craftsperson/sewing expert?
posted by Slinga at 2:24 PM - 8 answers

What do we need to do to get our Central Air working well?

We've replaced both the furnace and AC units, but heating and cooling are really uneven through the house, no matter what we've tried (opening/closing vents, adjusting the dampers in the ducts, keeping unused room doors open/closed, etc.). We've been told by other people in our community that the ducting in our units isn't designed very well. What are our next steps? What kind of professional is best to have come in to evaluate the system? Bonus points for specific recommendations in the northern NJ area. [more inside]
posted by MsVader at 11:25 AM - 10 answers

March 14

I want fabric, but I don't know anything about fabric.

I want to staple fabric up in my basement as a temporary and quick way to hide the wires and spiderwebs going willy-nilly between the supports. It'll need to be opaque, not stretchy, either light enough or sturdy not to sag, able to handle being stapled without falling apart, and cheap, since I'll need a lot of it. What fabric-words should I be looking for if I want fabric suited to this purpose?
posted by Pwoink at 4:57 PM - 17 answers

Bring back home ec

I'm interested in finding all sorts of online things (blogs, newspapers, community discussion/projects, photos, videos) around the idea of bringing back home economics. I know that Lichtenstein & Ludwig published a paper in the Journal of the American Medical Association in 2010 which has been cited by over 130 people since, but I really want non-academic sources. [more inside]
posted by b33j at 4:45 PM - 7 answers

How do I move this toilet base?

So the wax ring in my basement 'utility' toilet finally failed. Difficulty level: Unusual toilet. [more inside]
posted by Kyol at 12:06 PM - 4 answers

Slate tile fell off roof -- how urgent is this?

We live in a large, old house (1890s?). The roof is made of slate tiles, and I have no idea when they were most recently replaced/repaired/examined. A few days ago I found two connected tiles that had fallen off -- one full tile (4x8?) and one half tile section (4x4?). I cannot actually see where the tile fell from, it's too high/steep to see from either the ground or a 2nd-floor window. How urgent is this issue? [more inside]
posted by Bebo at 11:21 AM - 8 answers

March 13

What kind of professional will help me get lit up?

Are affordable lighting design consultants a thing? If yes, how best to find one? ...I've already tried Houzz, Homestars, and The Interwebs in general. [more inside]
posted by OlivesAndTurkishCoffee at 3:23 PM - 3 answers

March 12

Container plants that would thrive in a covered (but light) carport

I'm looking for a container plant that will be happy in a covered (but light) carport in southern California. No direct sunlight, but it does get very light during the day. I'm looking for something that will provide a nice screen for an ugly HVAC unit so something that will grow tall would be great. I'd been considering Snakeskin plant (sanseveria). What else should we consider?
posted by stewiethegreat at 8:26 PM - 4 answers

Where to buy auto battery vent caps?

Where can we buy auto battery vent caps? We need only the small plastic caps, not an entire battery. [more inside]
posted by ragtimepiano at 3:45 PM - 3 answers

March 11

NYC: renting a sponsored unit in a co-op

My partner and I are in the unenviable position of being pushed out of our apartment in Queens and are now looking for a new place. We found one in a co-op building that we really like, but I'm really nervous about renting a non-stabilized apartment. What do I need to be prepared for? [more inside]
posted by Neely O'Hara at 6:32 PM - 9 answers

Creative/fun way to celebrate first home purchase?

My husband and I were fortunate enough to recently be able to purchase our first home, and we get the keys this weekend. What's a neat way we could celebrate/commemorate this big life event? [more inside]
posted by lovableiago at 5:29 PM - 23 answers

Edumacate me about basement drainage and sump pumps

So, we bought our house a few years ago. It's a small one-story job, built around 1940 or so. The previous owners told us that the basement flooded years ago due to backup from the sewer system and after that episode, they installed a backflow prevention valve and a sump pump. I'd love to know more about how this basement is protected from moisture since I can't seem to figure it out myself. [more inside]
posted by greatgefilte at 2:40 PM - 11 answers

Wall oven error code F1...seeking help from MeFi experts

My double wall oven is throwing error code F1, I have tried all options that I have found on the web. Any other ideas? [more inside]
posted by Ginesthoi at 6:02 AM - 12 answers

March 9

Storage/space solutions for a galley bathroom?

I'm seeking ideas for making my galley-style bathroom more functional. Maybe you have some suggestions for improving how the space works, and maybe adding storage that won't have everybody ducking or squeezing by? [more inside]
posted by MonkeyToes at 8:44 AM - 18 answers

March 8

how to insulate pipes flush agaist an outside wall

i have CPVC pipes running from my outdoor continuous hot water heater through the garage wall, ceiling, and then to the entire house. how do i insulate the pipes when they are installed flush up against the house? [more inside]
posted by chasles at 12:39 PM - 2 answers

March 4

Natural gas line: CSST flex pipe or black iron pipe?

I'm in the process of installing a long natural gas line in my mid-19th century rowhouse. It will run about 45 feet (inside the house) from the gas meter in the basement all the way to the attic. It appears that I have two options - CSST flex pipe or black iron pipe. Help? [more inside]
posted by ClaireBear at 5:32 PM - 6 answers

Novice gardener in deer country ...

I'm a lifelong urban dweller about to move to a house surrounded by woods--and deer. Lots of deer. Whats the best strategy for planning my garden, and reconciling "start small" with the need to build a 6-foot fence around the thing to keep the critters out? [more inside]
posted by agent99 at 6:52 AM - 12 answers

Move one street away or remodel house?

We can't decide whether to take on quite a substantial re-modeling project or to move to a house in the next street. Any advice very welcome. [more inside]
posted by melisande at 4:24 AM - 19 answers

March 3

Ikea Kimsta / Poang Cover

My very old Kimsta needs a new cushion. The Poang long ago replaced the Kimsta, but it is slightly different (at least the newer ones are). Does anyone know if Poang replacement covers will fit the old Kimsta style? [more inside]
posted by evening at 4:36 PM - 0 answers

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