DIY — DIY Tips


Fixing a leaky faucet 0

Step One: What You Need

You'll need plastic wrap, a terry-cloth towel, a flat head screwdriver AND a Phillips head screwdriver, heat-resistant lubricant, an adjustable wrench or pliers, a utility knife, and a new washer or O-ring like the one that needs to be replaced.


Step Two: Opening Up the Handle

Shut off the water by tightening the valve located under the sink. Turn on both faucets to let the pipes empty completely. Then, place a folded piece of plastic wrap over the drain and cover the sink with a terry cloth towel to protect it. If there's a cap on the handle, gently pry it off with a flat-head screwdriver. Using a Phillips head screwdriver, take off the screw that holds the dripping handle in place.


Step Three: Checking the Washer

Using your wrench or pliers, loosen the nut that holds the stem. Once you have it off, remove the stem. First check the washer. It's the little disc screwed to the bottom of the stem. If it's cracked or seems a little brittle, replace it. Take it to the hardware store and find a matching one.


Step Four: Checking the O-Ring

 Now check the O-ring. It's like a little rubber band that circles the stem. There might be more than one. If any of them look broken or otherwise damaged, carefully cut them off with a utility knife. Replace the O-rings with matching ones from the hardware store. It’s a good idea to coat the stem with a bit of heat-resistant lubricant first. You can use the flat head screwdriver to help guide the O-rings into place.


Step Five: Putting It Back Together

 Now reassemble the faucet by reversing the previous instructions. Remove the towel and plastic wrap and turn the shut-off valve back on. Now you should have a non-leaky faucet to save money and your sanity.

For more fix-it advice, read my book “Room for Improvement.” Whatever your project, AOL Coaches are here to help, so check out what else we have to offer.

Installing a floating shelf 0

  1. Measure the location you would like to put the shelf
  2. Measure the shelf and cut it to size
  3. Using the stud finder determine where the studs are
  4. If possible put fasteners directly into studs
  5. Determine the height at witch you would like to hang the shelf and mark it with a pencil
  6. Using a level make a level line across the mark longer than the shelf
  7. Put shelf brackets on level line and mark holes with pencil
  8. Drill holes for fasteners
  9. Center brackets over holes and hand tighten screws into holes then finish the job with a screw driver
  10. Place your shelf over the brackets and you are finished

Supplies: shelving unit, fasteners

Tools cordless drill, screwdriver, level, stud finder and drill bits

How to Hang Stereo Speakers 0

What you need- speakers and speaker brackets,

Tools you need- power drill, tape measure, power screwdriver

Tip- use a stud finder to locate the stud or start at the corner and measure every 16 o.c.

Step 1-find your stud then measure down from the ceiling the desired distance down

Step 2- make your mark for the holes by using a pencil through the holes in the speaker bracket .

Step 3- drill your holes. Make sure the drill bit is thinner than the screw and make sure the hole is half the depth of the screw itself

Step 4 –line your speaker bracket up with the holes in the wall that you just drilled then ;place your top screw in, Tighten with your power screwdriver approximately ¾ of the way. Follow suit with all the screws.

Step 5- Finish tightening all the screws

Step 6 Take speaker and place it in the bracket and tighten the clamp on the bracket

Installation complete

 Test your work- putting light but firm pressure on the speaker bracket make sure it is not loose. Once the speaker is in place put gentle but firm pressure in all directions on the speaker. If it does not move you are done.  

How to Secure Furniture 0

What you need- furniture straps, screw, self drilling toggle bolt

Tools you need- power drill, drill bits, power screwdriver, tape measure

Tip- finding the stud is easy, here’s how… starting from the corner, measure every 16” on center

Step 1. Once you’ve located stud drill a hole thinner than the size of the screw and half the depth of the screw into the wall

Step 2 drill a hole into the furniture aligned with the hole in the wall

Step 3 using the power screwdriver , screw the strap into the furniture

Step 4 screw the other end of the strap into the wall

Step 5 repeat on the other side


Tip: when aligning the holes make the hole in the wall 1” to the outside of the furniture so as to ease the installation of the screw

Replacing Kitchen Cabinet Handles 1


Step One: What You Need

Count the number of handles or knobs that need replacing. Remove one handle and screw to bring with you when you shop for replacements. Most cabinet door handles are secured by one or two fine-threaded screws. Choose replacements handles that are secured with the same number of screws and that the new screws are the same length and diameter as the old ones...