Home Improvement Expert Danny Lipford

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Repairing Weather Damage to Your Home


Watch this video to find out how to repair damage to your home caused by the weather, from refinishing an entry door to cleaning and staining a concrete patio to replacing rotten siding. ...More




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Repairing Weather Damage to Your Home

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Sanding a badly weathered entry door before refinishing.

Sanding a badly weathered entry door before refinishing.

From rain and snow to sun and cold, the weather can take a toll on your home. Watch this video to find out how to repair weather related damage and improve the look of your home.

Weather damage home projects:

  • Refinish Entry Door: Entry doors take a lot of abuse from the elements and the sun’s UV rays, particularly stained or natural wood doors. See how to strip, sand, stain, finish, and replace the hardware on an entry door.
  • Score and Stain Concrete Patio: Concrete patios can become dirty and unattractive over time. Learn how to clean a concrete patio, score decorative lines into the concrete, and finish the surface with concrete stain and sealer.
  • Replace Rotten Siding: Rain and sun can deteriorate hardboard siding over time. Find out how to remove damaged siding, and replace it with durable fiber cement siding.

Read episode article to find out more.

Further Information



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Danny Lipford: This week on Today’s Homeowner, we’re taking on Mother Nature and trying to correct some of what she’s messed up. Stick around. It should be a good matchup.

Allen Lyle: I’m worried this guy’s going to grab the rake and beat me with it.

Danny Lipford: One thing all houses have in common is the fact that their biggest enemy is the weather. Heat or cold, rain or snow, houses take a beating from the elements. So we’re tackling some repairs made necessary by the weather.

We want these houses to look better but also be better protected from the elements. In fact, the first one happens to be my house, where I’ve recruited my daughter, Chelsea, to help me refinish my front door.

Chelsea Lipford: Heard there was going to be lunch, so…

Danny Lipford: Whatever it takes. But check this out. You know, we always have a wreath here of some kind, and you can really see, look how it’s peeling right off.

Chelsea Lipford: Yeah. I’ve never seen a door look like that. I guess it’s going to take a while, huh?

Danny Lipford: It certainly will and the first step is to get the door off the hinges.

Chelsea Lipford: So is this what it looked like when you stained it first?

Danny Lipford: Yeah. Check that out. That’s what I hope it looks like by the end of the day.

Because painting or refinishing a door is a lot easier when it’s horizontal.

Chelsea Lipford: Is it heavy?

Danny Lipford: Very heavy.

Unfortunately refinishing does take some time, so you’ll want to cover up the opening while you’re working.

Chelsea Lipford: Would a painted door last longer in that sun or is it really, probably the same?

Danny Lipford: A lighter colored painted door would last pretty good. But still I love a stained door.

Now, check out the finish on this. That’s the way the outside of that door used to look.

Chelsea Lipford: Wow!

Danny Lipford: And again, that just shows you what the sun will do between that and that. Isn’t that unreal?

Chelsea Lipford: Yucky. I don’t want to look at it anymore.

Danny Lipford: I’m just going to carry it down to the sawhorses.

Chelsea Lipford: You want to get one end, and I’ll get the back end?

Danny Lipford: Mmm-hmm. Yep.

Chelsea Lipford: I liked it better when carried it by yourself.

Danny Lipford: God, it looks old! It looks like some old antique house, doesn’t it?

Chelsea Lipford: People pay good money to antique things, Dad. We could sell this on Craigslist.

Danny Lipford: To do the job right, you’ll want to remove the hardware and lock set from the door first.

Boy, you can really see it right there. The difference between that used to look like that. You see the finish. How much that sun’s baked it away and just all of these flakes. Gee whiz.

Of course, as with any job, safety equipment is so important.

You know, I got me a mask. And then I made you a special one.

Chelsea Lipford: Dad, that’s… Aw!

Danny Lipford: No, this one’s mine. No, no. No, you try that on. Here, put it on. I like that.

Chelsea Lipford: Why?

Danny Lipford: Because you look happy the whole time. It looks like a little puppy dog right there.

Chelsea Lipford: Can you tell I’m really smirking at you? Just wait till our lunch break. See what your mask looks like.

Danny Lipford: Okay, with the grain. So you’re going vertical here. Right. Then you’re going horizontal there. And vertical here.

We’re using a quarter-sheet pad sander with 80-grit sandpaper for the large flat areas. And a triangular detail sander to get into the tight spots.

How’s that working? Look at this right here. It’s really where we want to end up with it, it’s going to take a while.

Chelsea Lipford: It’s a lot more work than I thought.

Danny Lipford: Yeah, I mean, when you see that it’s all peeling off like that, you’d think that it would come right off.

This part of the job goes a lot quicker with power tools, but it’s still a ton of work that takes a lot of time. Once the old stain is gone, we switch to a finer grit sandpaper to smooth out all of the surface.

I soon realize that the molding may take forever to get down to bare wood, so we decide to simply remove the varnish from it…

Chelsea Lipford: Oh, that looks pretty good. Wow!

Danny Lipford: …before we wipe off the dust and begin applying the stain.

Oh, yeah! There we go. Oh, man. That looks great, doesn’t it?

Chelsea Lipford: I don’t know. Am I doing a good job, Dad?

Danny Lipford: So far, but you’re just getting started. You see how yours seems darker than mine?

Chelsea Lipford: Yeah, did I do too much?

Danny Lipford: Well, you don’t want to overwork it.

But it doesn’t take long before Chelsea gets the hang of it…

Yep, that looks great.

…and soon the whole door is stained. The next day we can apply the first of two coats of marine-grade spar varnish that’ll protect the wood from the weather.

Sure looks good, like a piece of furniture.

When the first coat dries, it still has a slightly rough feel, so we go over it lightly with some 400-grit sandpaper before the second coat is applied.

Finally, the door is ready to be rehung. The new hardware we’re putting on includes a cool new touchscreen deadbolt from Schlage that also makes getting in easier if you forgot your key.

In fact, you can program the lock with several different codes to give others access if you’re not at home. I just need to make sure Chelsea doesn’t have one or we’ll never have food in the fridge again.

Joe Truini: There’re very few caulking projects that require you to use a full tube of caulk, so it’s important to find a way to seal it so you can reuse it next time. Now I’ve seen people use duct tape and even wire nuts to seal it but these ideas don’t really work because they don’t seal out the air. The air gets in the nozzle and dries the caulk and you can’t get it out.

So here’s an idea that works really well. After you cut it open and use some of it, plug up the nozzle with either a long steel rod, a screw, a long screw, or even just a nail. 16-penny nail, slide it in there, and then, tape the end of it with some duct tape.

What that does, it seals out most of the air and even if a little air gets inside the nozzle, you can pull out the screw or the nail, and there’ll be a channel so you can get the rest of the caulking out. And you can do this as many times as necessary, until you use up the entire tube.

Danny Lipford: This week we’re taking on projects brought about by Mother Nature.

That used to look like that.

And we’ve already restored the sun parched finish on my front door. Now we’re about to help Lori Blum with some damaged siding and a patio that’s a little less attractive than she’d like.

We started by cleaning the mold and mildew off the patio before I met with Lori to discuss the next step.

Lori Blum: Danny the patio looks so much better just by power washing it.

Danny Lipford: Yeah, it’s amazing. We used a little TSP, trisodium phosphate, to kind of loosen things up and then spraying it off. But what I was amazed at is how different it is out where it’s been raining versus what’s been covered.

Lori Blum: Right, there is such a difference where the rocks are showing on this area.

Danny Lipford: Yeah, I know. That stain will kind of camouflage that a little bit.

Lori Blum: Well, good, so you won’t notice so much of a contrast.

Danny Lipford: Yeah, you still may have a little bit there. But, of course, this is a thing I saw here that we’re going to have to deal with. Apparently the reinforcement wire that they put in the original slab, a little close to the surface, and it probably has aggravated you ever since you’ve seen that.

Lori Blum: It has. I hate this little divot in the concrete.

Danny Lipford: I also noticed it’s like some craft project got a little out of hand.

Lori Blum: Oh, I’m sure.

Danny Lipford: Yeah, so we got some lacquer thinner, maybe we can get that up. And then after that we can go ahead and move forward with maybe some of the scoring and see what else we can do here.

Lori Blum: Good.

Danny Lipford: But Allen’s on his way out with some of the fiber cement siding. I know you have some of the hardboard siding like so many people that you have a few problems. So, he’ll be able to get out here with those materials pretty soon.

Lori Blum: Well, good. My father is on his way. So, I’ll let him handle that part.

Danny Lipford: Oh, perfect, perfect. Yeah, they can have it out in the sun and we can stay…

Lori Blum: Underneath the cover.

Danny Lipford: Right, right. Well, let’s get started with this then.

Lori Blum: Okay.

Danny Lipford: First we remove any flaking concrete with a chisel before sweeping out the loose rocks and dust. Then we dampen the concrete with a wet brush so the fast-setting concrete we’re mixing up doesn’t dry out too quickly.

The fast-setting concrete can be applied with a putty knife or trowel. Basically you fill the void and smooth it off flush with the surrounding surface, then wait for it to dry.

The paint splatter maybe a little more difficult though, so we’re using some lacquer thinner to soften the paint before the scraping begins.

Lori Blum: You can see that I use this patio to do a lot of painting sometimes.

Danny Lipford: Everybody does. I tell you, you can see a lot of times where people will spray something, and they have the paper out there, and not enough paper.

Lori Blum: That’s how I’ve got paint marks. Well, there it goes. It’s starting to come out now.

Danny Lipford: The wire brush seems to be effective, but it takes a lot of elbow grease.

Lori Blum: It’s stubborn paint stains.

Danny Lipford: Yeah. Soaked in. That’s what it is. You know, when you have something here, you know, this has never been sealed, that’s one of the things. Once we get it stained and sealed, it’ll be a lot more resistant, you know, to stains and paint.

Lori Blum: Good, because I can’t promise that I won’t do any more painting projects out here.

Danny Lipford: While the paint stains soaks in a little more lacquer thinner, we do a little planning for our next step.

I wanted to ask you about the score joints, and how we can do the score joints. You know, you’ve seen people that get real elaborate and they put all kinds of…

Lori Blum: Oh, I’ve seen some fancy work on concrete patios before.

Danny Lipford: Yeah, I don’t think it’s really necessary on that, but what I was going to suggest—I was looking at it yesterday when we were cleaning it—is to come just this side of that column just a little bit. So, that’ll probably be, say, 14 inches off that edge.

Lori Blum: Right.

Danny Lipford: Same all the way around, and then just cut that one border around.

Lori Blum: That’ll look nice.

Danny Lipford: It’s just one thing. It kind of defines, you know, the outside part of it. And then just simply one right down the middle, and then one straight across, which probably that column’s going to hit just about where that middle one would be. Then you kind of have it divided up in you know…

Lori Blum: Four sections.

Danny Lipford: …four sections. Lot of symmetry to it. And then after we stain it I think it’s going to really look good.

Lori Blum: That would look good.

Danny Lipford: So once we finish removing the paint stain, we begin laying out our border. This is important because the circular saw we’ll use to cut the concrete has a guard that prevents it from running all the way up to the wall along the edges.

Okay, you reach out there and pop it one time.

Lori Blum: Okay.

Danny Lipford: Pull it up an inch or so and there you go—the magic string. The pattern can really be any design that you want, but be sure that you have it like you want in chalk before you break out the saw.

All right, perfect. Hey, this looks good. Give you a good idea what it’s going to look like once we get everything scored out. Yeah, you can already see it coming along now.

Lori Blum: Oh, here’s my dad, he came.

Danny Lipford: Looks like trouble. How you doing, I’m Danny.

Lori Blum: This is Danny.

Butch Fleming: Butch Fleming. How you doing, nice to meet you, Danny.

Danny Lipford: And Allen, you know.

Lori Blum: Hey, Allen. How are you?

Allen Lyle: Hey, good, good.

So you can get an idea what it’s going to look like now, huh?

Allen Lyle: Yeah.

Butch Fleming: Yeah, looks good. Looks like you’ve drawn it out and you’re ready to go.

Danny Lipford: Yeah, all we got to do now is cut everything, and did you get that abrasive blade I need?

Allen Lyle: I’ve got it. I got two abrasive blades because I’m going to have to have one out front with that fiber cement siding. Lori, I just had epiphany.

Lori Blum: Yes. Four different color stains and a giant Andy Warhol. Bam! Right here.

Lori Blum: There we go!

Allen Lyle: I love it.

Danny Lipford: No. We’re going with one stain.

Allen Lyle: Okay.

Danny Lipford: One sealer, and it’s going to be awesome.

Allen Lyle: I think it’s going to look great. Let’s get some saw blades.

Danny Lipford: Yeah, let’s get the saw.

Lori Blum: Let’s go.

Danny Lipford: Allen and Butch are going to tackle the damaged hardboard siding around the corner of Lori’s house, but it looks like they have an unwanted helper.

Allen Lyle: Yeah, I got to tell you this, Butch, I can work with pretty much anybody. Almost anybody.

Butch Fleming: Almost.

Allen Lyle: I have to work with Danny Lipford. I can work with almost anybody. But Godzilla over here, is not going to work.

Butch Fleming: Listen, I’ve raised him from a baby.

Allen Lyle: You know what worries me more than anything, I’m worried this guy’s going to grab the rake and beat me with it.

Butch Fleming: See, there he comes.

Allen Lyle: Here he comes. Come on now.

Danny Lipford: Once the spider is safely exiled to the neighbor’s yard…

Allen Lyle: I’m going to give you to another…

Butch Fleming: He’s got you!

Allen Lyle: Aww! Yeah, go visit.

Danny Lipford: …Butch and Allen can resume thinning the shrubs to make room for their work. While they do that, let’s check in with Jodi for this week’s Best New Product.

Jodi Marks: You know if you’re trying to grow a garden or have a beautiful lawn, water is your best friend; but on any other surface it can be your biggest nightmare. Things like wood or concrete, metal, plastic, until now. Take a look at this.

Rust-Oleum, has come up with this product called, NeverWet. It’s a two-step process. And it’s pretty good because it’s a multi-surface, liquid repelling treatment. And it works virtually on anything.

I love the picture on the back of this box right here, because this shows exactly how it would work on an untreated surface like your work boots. Something as simple as your work boots. You spray it on and virtually makes them water, mud, and ice repellent.

Also, you can put it on work gloves. Something like these leather gloves here. Just spray on the application, let it dry, and again, it’s ready to go. You can also put it on, say, your planter boxes to preserve them because over time a cedar planter box will actually start to break down.

So this is a very quick, easy application. And after you do just these few steps, all your things will be water repellant and cleaner longer.

Danny Lipford: This week we’re making repairs and improvements to combat the effects of Mother Nature on our homes.

Lori and I have cleaned and repaired her patio. Now we’re upgrading the look of the patio by scoring shallow grooves into the surface.

The piece of plywood Lori is standing on serves as a straight edge for my saw. This is really important for cutting long lines, especially in a rough surface like concrete.

This process is relatively simple but incredibly noisy and dusty. It’s also a bit time consuming because you have to move the saw through the concrete very slowly.

Meanwhile, Allen and Butch are done landscaping and wrangling spiders.

Butch Fleming: You’re awful brave against that little spider.

Allen Lyle: Yeah, don’t bring the big one back.

Danny Lipford: And they’re ready to go to work. Actually, right now, there’s one little problem here, Butch. I mean, you talk about lap siding. I mean, if you look at it, every piece is on top of another piece.

Butch Fleming: Correct.

Allen Lyle: When you get down here to the bottom, instead of cantilevered out, it’s flat down. So there’s no starter piece.

Butch Fleming: Okay.

Allen Lyle: So we’ve to put a starter piece up first.

Butch Fleming: Okay, that’ll work.

Danny Lipford: But before that starter strip goes up, the old damaged siding has to come off.

Allen Lyle: I’ll start on this end.

Butch Fleming: All right. Pry from the bottom?

Allen Lyle: Pry from bottom up and pull the bottom two.

Danny Lipford: The process is pretty simple. You pry off the boards one at a time, working from the bottom up. As the boards pull away from the wall, they come loose from the nails that hold them beneath the boards above.

Allen Lyle: That’s it.

Danny Lipford: The only real difficulties are there are penetrations like this garden hose spigot. There you just have to pick away at the siding one small piece at a time.

Butch Fleming: It’s all rotted except in that one spot.

Allen Lyle: Yeah, the one spot.

Danny Lipford: Meanwhile, Lori and I have finished cutting and we’re ready to clean up.

Lots of dust, huh?

Lori Blum: It sure did make a lot of dust. So what do we do next?

Danny Lipford: Well, what we’re going to do is dump our stain. We’ve got this translucent water-based stain—“golden wheat” is what you’ve picked out—that sounds good. I’ll cut around the edges with a paint brush…

Lori Blum: Okay.

Danny Lipford: …and I’ll let you do the rolling. I’ll let you do the fun part.

Lori Blum: So you just roll it right on?

Danny Lipford: Yeah, just roll it on.

Lori Blum: Okay.

Danny Lipford: We just want it real thin and real even.

Lori Blum: Okay, sounds good.

Danny Lipford: Like wood stains, this stuff is super thin. So it pours more like water than paint.

It’s not paint. So, it’s just real, real thin..

Lori Blum: Just like that?

Danny Lipford: Yeah. And just, It’ll go a long way. This is supposed to get—handle—up to almost 400 square feet.

Lori Blum: Oh, so it really does go on thin.

Danny Lipford: Mmm-hmm. Yeah, what you’re seeing right there is just what we want to end up with.

Lori Blum: Okay.

Danny Lipford: This ain’t going to take long at all, Lori.

Lori Blum: No, this seems to be going on pretty quick.

Danny Lipford: Yeah.

Lori Blum: So about how long will it take for this to dry?

Danny Lipford: Oh, it dries to touch in about an hour and a half, and foot traffic after about four.

Lori Blum: Okay.

Danny Lipford: Now see, all the people in the neighborhood are going to want you to come and do their patios now.

Lori Blum: Oh, they are. They’re going to be jealous.

Danny Lipford: I know it. Pick you up some extra money. You know, actually, this is a pretty easy way to put it on, as long as you get it nice and even. You can also use a pump up sprayer like a garden sprayer?

Lori Blum: Oh, yeah.

Danny Lipford: Works pretty good. We’ll be finished pretty soon here. I don’t know about that other crew.

Allen Lyle: Hey, I can hear you!

Lori Blum: I don’t know what they’re doing over there.

Danny Lipford: Yeah, they’re just making a lot of noise. Besides the banging, there’s also a fair amount of sawing as Allen cuts the fiber cement siding that they’re using to replace the damaged hardboard. But before the new siding goes up, Allen and Butch are tacking a vapor barrier over the exposed wood sheeting to protect it from future moisture.

Fiber cement works best when it’s blind nailed. That means the nails go in the top of each piece so that the row above it covers the fasteners. Occasionally there are old nails that have to be clipped to allow you to slide the last piece behind the existing siding. This row also attaches a little differently.

Allen Lyle: Since this is the insert run, we can’t blind nail it.

Butch Fleming: Okay.

Allen Lyle: But rather than nail from the bottom into this, and we don’t need to do that, we’re going to actually nail through this one…

Butch Fleming: Through that.

Allen Lyle: …into this one. Let’s see. So we’ve got two to go through. All right. One more piece and we’re done. Looking good.

Danny Lipford: The last two pieces are seamed around the spigot with small notches cut in each. This arrangement means we don’t have to call a plumber to remove and reinstall the valve. Now around back, once the stain has dried on the patio, there’s one last step.

Lori seemed very pleased with the color of her patio. And I really like this type of stain—a translucent stain—that allows a little bit of the character of the concrete to kind of shine right through.

But it’s about to look a lot better because I have some water-proofing sealer that I just put in a pump up sprayer that makes it so easy to apply. And it’ll give it a little more of a finished look and also add even more protection.

Once you coat an area, you backroll it with a roller to even out the finish. While I do that, check out this question we received recently from one of our viewers.

Rob is asking, “Is it difficult to install a peephole in a front door?”

No, it’s not a hard project at all to install a peephole in any type door, including a metal door like this one. I just installed this one a few minutes ago.

The main thing is to position your peephole at the right height for the person that’ll be answering the door the most. I have seen people who put a second peephole in for the kids. But it all starts with measuring. Measure exactly where you want it, then use the right size drill bit.

But don’t drill all the way through the door even if it’s a metal door. You want to go until you see the drill bit starting to emerge, then go around to the other side and drill back through so that you don’t have any splintering or any damage to the door.

Then the peephole comes apart—two different pieces—you screw it in, tighten it up, and you’re through. That way next time someone knocks on the door, you’ll know who it is.

This week we’ve done some weather rehab on both wood and concrete surfaces, as well as some repairs that involve a little of both. In each case, we made the surface more attractive. But more importantly, we protected them from the future effects of the elements. Now there’s nothing left but the decorating.

Now, your neighbors are going to want one of these.

Lori Blum: Yes.

Danny Lipford: Because everybody in neighborhood has a concrete patio, so will you be able to handle this? And what about the scoring the joints there with a saw?

Lori Blum: Well, I know how to do it now. I am a perfect director for it.

Danny Lipford: Well, it was a little messy.

Lori Blum: Yes, it was.

Danny Lipford: A little intimidating with all the dust and such. But we love being able to show you these very common repairs that a lot of homeowners face, and hopefully we’ve been able to share with you the right amount of information that you can do it yourself.

Hey, thanks so much for being with us this week. I’m Danny Lipford, we’ll see you next week, here on Today’s Homeowner. I see the spoilt one around here.

Lori Blum: Oh, yeah.

Danny Lipford: I love her mask. Look at it.