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15 Easiest Do-It-Yourself Home Repairs for Everyone

By Jarrod Heil

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Even though you may not want to spend your free weekend conducting do-it-yourself home repairs around the house, some repairs don’t need the helping hand of a professional. The easiest home repairs to do yourself simply require a bit of elbow grease and know-how.

Plus, not hailing in the help of a professional also means you’ll be saving a boatload of money that you would’ve been spending on hourly labor that may or may not seem to go on a tad too long.

When considering whether or not you should conduct home repairs yourself, you must first evaluate the situation at hand and figure out if the repair is doable or if you suspect a larger issue may be at play. If it’s the latter, you can always repair as much as you can before calling in the pros.

These are the 15 easiest home repairs to do yourself and a few tips about how to finish the project and what to do if the job winds up being over your head.

1. Unclogging Drains

Arguably the easiest DIY home repair every homeowner should know how to do is unclog the drains in their home. Whether your drains were clogged by hair caught in the shower drain or food you probably weren’t supposed to put down the drain, unclogging them is easy.

Simply take a cleaning substance like drano, pour it down the drain, wait ample time and bingo, you’ve got clean drains. For clogged hair in the bathroom drains, you may need to construct a DIY hair remover from an old clothes hanger to truly get every last drop.

2. Dripping Faucets

When faucets begin to drip, it’s not a cause for immediate panic. Although it is cause for alarm, most dripping faucets can be fixed easily with an adjustable wrench. Just tighten the base of the faucet with a wrench and it should stop dripping.

However, if the faucet doesn’t stop dripping after you’ve tightened it to the moon and back, the faucet’s sealers may be shot. There’s also a possibility that you need a new faucet if your leaking one is pretty old. But replacing those are easy as turning off the main water supply to your home, using that same wrench to remove your faucets and replace them with new ones.

3. Running Toilets

Ah, the running toilet. You don’t realize it’s running until hours after it starts, racking up your water bill by about 20 gallons that month. But the good thing is that running toilets are one of the easiest home repairs to do yourself.

At first, try jiggling the handle. The chain inside the back bowl attached to the lever may just be caught on something. If that works, be on the lookout for the next few weeks to see if the toilet continues to run. If it doesn’t work, the sealer inside the back bowl may be worn out.

To fix it, turn off your home’s water supply temporarily and drain the excess water out of the back bowl by flushing the toilet. Now all you need to do is replace that rubber ring connected to a chain, which is then connected to the level. That should do the trick.

4. Cleaning Moldy Grout

Removing mold and mildew from the grouts of your bathroom floors can be painstaking work if you’re not doing it properly. But for those of you who were lucky enough to stumble upon this article, this devastating chore can be completed in a few hours.

All you need is a cleaning solution with bleach and a heavy-duty handheld grout brush. Using a bleach-based cleaning solution is the easiest way, so you may need to buck up and give in to the bleach cleaner.

Spray the cleaner on the grout — and don’t be stingy with the cleaning solution. Make sure the grout is soaking in it for about an hour and then come behind it with the heavy-duty grout brush. You’ll need to put some elbow grease into it, but this should remove all the built-up mold and mildew that found its way into your grout.

5. Caulking Tubs

Many people who caulk tubs themselves are left with a sub-par job because they have no idea you need to remove the old caulk before putting in the new stuff.

You need to clean out the old caulk, then clean the area with ceramic tile cleaner to create a fresh surface for the new caulk. Doing this ensures no dirt or grime gets between the caulk and tub.

6. Stripped Screws

Stripped screws are the sworn enemy of every homeowner. There’s no uncomforting feeling quite like using an electric screwdriver and hearing the loud sound of stripping at the end. It’s devastating because you know the screws are going to be that much harder to remove.

But there’s good news. When you’re removing stripped screws, do so with a handheld screwdriver, placing a rubber band on the tip of the screwdriver. The rubber from the band fills the stripped gaps and acts as a gripper that allows you to remove stripped screws without much work.

7. Repairing Torn Screens

Whether the screen rips on your windows or outdoor lanai, the thought of having to replace the entire screen may give you cold sweats. It’s expensive and time-consuming. Luckily, you don’t have to replace the entire screen, just the part that was ripped.

For small tears, using clear fingernail polish will patch them right up. However, for larger holes, you’ll just need some replacement screens that will hold up to high winds and hot glue.

Place the patch over the screen (a little larger than the hole on each side), glue the corners down, wipe up the excess glue with an old rag and you’ve just saved yourself hundreds of dollars.

8. Washing Windows

Washing windows can be brutal if you have a lot of windows in your home. And many people spend an entire day washing their windows only to find streaks and grime the next day. Since the sun evaporates the cleaning solution on windows quickly, you’ll need to clean your windows when the sun isn’t shining directly at them.

Try cleaning your windows on a cloudy day. If you can’t wait, start in the morning with the windows opposite the sun, take a break during the mid-afternoon and hit the windows on the opposite side of the house in the late afternoon.

9. Dealing With Pet Damage

Whether your pet damaged the carpet, doors, walls or something else in your home, fixing the damage yourself will save you a boatload of money.

If you don’t want to spend a lot of money on repairs (or out of fear it may happen again), cover torn carpets with rugs and paint your pet’s scratches with matching paint or fingernail polish.

10. Removing Wallpaper

Removing wallpaper may sound like a daunting task — but that tacky old wallpaper may be daunting to your home’s value. To remove wallpaper, simply get a putty knife, steamer and removing agent.

Simply steam the wallpaper to get it loose from the wall, sprinkle some removing agent behind the wallpaper and take your putty knife along the back of the wallpaper to remove it easily.

11. Patching Holes

Patching holes is as easy as cutting out spare drywall, spackling some patcher onto the front, sanding it down by hand and repainting the outside. But if you’re not careful, the patch job could look a lot like an amateur job.

12. Squeaking Floors

Sure, wood floors look amazing and can increase the property value of your home, but squeaking floorboards are downright annoying. The first fix is to lubricate the floorboards with a handheld lubricant.

If that doesn’t work, try a dry silicone lubricant or powdered graphite. However, if those don’t do the trick, it may be time to call in a professional. This is one of those tasks that can cause more damage if you don’t know what you’re doing.

13. Unnerving Ceiling Fans

A shaking ceiling fan can create all kinds of feels in your head — and not the good ones. At some point, the ceiling fan gets so loud you can’t sleep or shakes so much you think it’s going to fly off its bearings. But all you need to do is get a ladder and tighten the screws and bolts and that should do the trick!

14. Painting the Exterior

One of the best (and cheapest ways) to increase the value of your home is to give it a fresh coat of paint. While this job will likely take a few weekends, painting your house by yourself (or with the help of a friend) could jazz up your home and save you thousands of dollars.

15. Landscaping Updates

Nobody likes to do their own landscaping, but everybody loves to look at great landscape designs that have been so carefully crafted and curated. Instead of spending thousands of dollars to hire professional landscapers to update the look and feel, jot down what you want on a piece of paper, buy the supplies and designate a weekend to update!

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