Home Repair Basics

By: Danny Lipford
Homeowners Ted and Christine Learn Tips on Basic Home Repairs.

Homeowners Ted and Christine Learn Tips on Basic Home Repairs.

Ted and Christine Prescott’s home is sixty years old so there’s no surprise that it needs a few repairs. Combine the age of the home, the owner’s busy schedules and a pair of teenage boys who define rowdy; and you have the perfect location to dig into Home Repair Basics.

In this case the repairs are all very common and revolve right around the front entry door.

  • A broken doorbell
  • Drywall damage courtesy of a door knob and a broken door stop
  • Water damaged laminate flooring
  • Broken slats in a louvered closet door
  • A drafty door in need of weatherstripping and a threshold
  • A broken window pane
  • A moldy porch floor

Here’s how we tackled those issues:

Broken Doorbell

As is often the case, the problem with this doorbell was simply a broken button. Because the button is subject to weather the contacts often corrode or simply wear out. These systems operate on low voltage so testing is easy. Remove the button and touch the two wires from its back together. If the bell rings, all you need is a new button. In this case we’re replacing it with a new video doorbell system from NuTone called Knock.

Drywall Repair

The drywall damage here consists of two nickle sized holes created by the door knob and deadbolt. They’re too big to just fill with Spackle so we’re applying drywall joint compound, followed by drywall tape and more joint compound. For larger holes you may want to consider using a repair that’s often called a “Hot Patch.” Watch Repair Door Knob Hole in Drywall for details.

Water-Damaged Laminate Flooring

Apparently the damaged floor was the result of a pet that wasn’t potty trained. But whatever the cause, you’ll need some leftover pieces of matching material to repair a laminate floor. Each situation is different but here’s a video that will show some good strategies for removal and replacement. Watch Repair Damaged Laminate Flooring for a how-to video.

Sealing Entries

The front entry to the Prescott’s home was also drafty thanks to its age. Replacing the weatherstrip and threshold is important, but don’t forget to caulk around the doorway too. If you need to match existing siding or trim Red Devil’s Create-A-Color® Caulk may be just the solution.

Broken Window Pane

In addition to the broken window pane here there are also several panes that are missing most of their glazing compound. The Prescott’s got some bad advice about what to use to replace it so a brief tutorial on pane replacement and glazing is definitely in order. Watch our video on Replacing a Broken Window Pane for more details.

Moldy Porch Floor

Christine was frustrated that she had recently pressure washed the porch and it was already moldy. So Chelsea shared our favorite go-to mold, algae, and mildew remover, Wet & Forget, with her.

Other Tips from This Episode

How to Drill Pilot Holes for Finish Nails in Molding

Simple Solutions with Joe Truini:
Finish Nail Pilot Hole

Often when you’re driving finishing nails into moldings, the nail will split the wood unless you drill a pilot hole first. But tiny drill bits have a habit of breaking after a few uses. Watch the solution here.

Commercial DualCheck 2-in-1 Electrical Tester

Best New Products with Jodi Marks:
Commercial Electric DualCheck Electrical Tester

This tester combines 2 of the most popular testers used by electricians, inspectors and homeowners into a single unit. It is available at The Home Depot. Watch the video.



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Home Repair Basics