Quick and easy 10-minute fixes for your home

By Tom Phelan - ReminderNews
Featured - posted Wed., Dec. 18, 2013
- Contributed Photo

We all seem to avoid those annoying little things in our homes that might only take 10 minutes to fix. Perhaps some of these 10-minute fixes will help you shorten your list of things to repair.

That wallpaper job you did this summer looked great, but with the dry air inside your home in the winter, a seam or two doesn't seem so invisible. You can close up a wallpaper seam quickly and easily with wallpaper touch-up glue or seam sealer. White glue will do, but I don't recommend it. Delicately remove any residue from the original glue with the point of a toothpick. Then use a tube of seam-sealer to squirt a bit of glue under the paper where it has separated from the wall. Too little will not hold the paper, but excess will make a mess on the wallpaper that you will need to clean up. Using a damp sponge, wipe down the seam, removing any excess sealer, while at the same time closing the seam. Wipe the paper dry with a paper towel. As a precaution, cover the seam with masking tape that will hold the paper in place, yet not pull it away when you remove after the repair has dried.

Your cabinet doors looked good when they were installed, but repetitive opening and closing has taken a toll. A door might not fit right, isn't aligned with the others, and may move as it opens and closes. This is easily fixed on the newer style of hinges that are hidden from view. They are equipped with adjustment screws that determine the horizontal and vertical position, as well as the front-back position relative to the cabinet facing.

Don't touch the screws that fasten the hardware to the cabinet. There are other screws for adjusting the door. One will change the depth at which the hinge closes. Just turning it may move the door. If not, adjust it manually, and tighten the screw. Use the other adjustable screw to move the door left or right.

You see a little water on floor under refrigerator, and wonder how it got there. It could be that someone dropped ice on the floor and it slid under the refrigerator. However, it is just as likely that the condenser drip pan is out of place or filled up. Remove the front cover at the bottom of the unit. This usually requires only a firm tug at each end, though some units might secure the lower face plate with screws. Use a narrow vacuum cleaner tool to suck all the dirt and dust bunnies out from under the fridge. If you don't have such a tool, your home store has a long narrow brush that is designed specifically for this process. Frozen coating on the condenser coils is a sign that air cannot circulate.  This will cause the inside of your fridge to be warmer than you want it to be. Clean the area thoroughly, empty and replace the drip pan, and the clogged coil should clear itself. You might need to empty the drip pan in this process.

Your shower provides a less-than-satisfactory bathing experience because the head is clogged. The spray is limited and some of the water doesn't even hit your body. Cover the head and the pipe with cloth before you clamp wrenches on them. Hold the wrench on the pipe steady, and slowly unscrew the head with the other. Soak the head in a product that can remove lime and calcium. The longer you soak it the better. Rinse the head in cold water, and tap it on a hard surface to shale loose any granules. Disassemble the head to the extent you are able, brush it with an old toothbrush, and poke a toothpick in the holes to clear them.

Find some more 10-minute fixes yourself, and get them done.

Let us know what you think!
Please be as specific as possible.
Include your name and email if you would like a response back.
This question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.
Enter the code without spaces and pay attention to upper/lower case.