22 Sep

How to Maintain and Fix Sliding Doors

The two types of doors that are easiest to open don’t have hinges at all; instead, they slide on tracks. Sliding-glass doors are a popular feature in rooms with decks or patios because their full-length glass panels open the room visually to the great outdoors while providing easy access to the outside. Interior sliding doors are frequently used for closets and pantries, and sometimes to conceal water heaters and furnaces. You can remove sliding-door panels easily to gain complete access to what’s behind them. Follow simple repairs and maintenance procedures to keep your sliding doors on track.

Getting Your Patio Door to Slide Better

Patio doors slide horizontally — or at least they’re supposed to. All too often, these big, pesky contraptions stubbornly resist opening, and getting outside becomes about as easy as dragging a refrigerator through a sandbox.

The most common cause of a sticking patio door is debris in the lower track. This channel easily becomes clogged with dirt and leaves because people and pets walk over it whenever they go in or out. Each time you vacuum your floors, use a small brush attachment or cordless vacuum to clean the sliding-door tracks. Apply a lubricant to both upper and lower tracks to keep the door hardware clean and operating freely.

In addition to cleaning and lubricating sliding-door tracks, you want to lubricate the door lock. The best way to lubricate any lock is to disassemble it and use an aerosol lubricant to flush away grime and coat the moving parts of the lock.

Sometimes, patio doors become hard to open even when the track is clean. In these cases, the problem is usually that the rollers at the bottom of the door have started to rub against the track. The rollers at the top can also wear down, lowering the bottom of the door so that it rubs on the track.

Most sliding doors have a mechanism called an adjusting screw located at the bottom of the door ends. Turning this screw raises or lowers the roller. Give the screw a clockwise turn and test to see whether the door slides easier. If the door becomes even harder to open, turn the screw in the opposite direction. After a bit of adjustment, the door should roll easily without rubbing on the bottom track.

VIDEO: Replacing Sliding Glass Doors: Removing Door Panel

Maintaining Sliding Closet Doors

Sliding closet doors operate on rollers that are positioned in tracks at the top jamb and floor, allowing the doors to bypass each other in the tracks. Because sliding doors don’t fold out the way bifold doors do, they allow access to only half the width of the opening at a time.

To clean and lubricate the hardware of a sliding closet door, use a stiff brush, a toothbrush, or a hand vacuum to clean dust from the tracks. Use an aerosol lubricant to lubricate all the door rollers. If the rollers are damaged, install replacement rollers (available at home centers).

If the door doesn’t hang level, leaving an uneven gap between the door and door frame, look for an adjustable mounting screw at the inside top of each door. Use a screwdriver to adjust the mounting screw and even out the door.

Article Source: http://www.dummies.com/how-to/content/how-to-maintain-and-fix-sliding-doors.html

30 Aug

Old House Maintenance Information

How much money should you budget for older home maintenance and repairs? Here are some tips for you.

Old House Maintenance

Floor squeaks break the cool night air. Gently rolling floors crest blindly under your favorite table creating a persistent wobble. Lights dim romantically each time the refrigerator comes on. The pleasures of owning and maintaining and older house!

Those in the real estate business often refer to these personality traits by their technical term – charm. But charm or not, old house maintenance home comes with special duties and responsibilities not realized by those used to buildings that have not surpassed adolescence. Read the full article.

The hassles are even worse in older homes. Ruth Robbins and her husband bought a 48-year-old house in Chevy Chase, Md., for $700,000 in 1994. After a home inspection, they got $15,000 back from the sellers to pay for fixing a few minor problems.

But the couple quickly discovered more glitches. The air conditioner sputtered like a Model T, and the dishwasher broke three weeks after they moved in. Now the chimney flue is leaking, the front bricks are flaking, and Ms. Robbins thinks the bathroom and kitchen need updating. Contractors’ estimates for all this exceed $200,000. Read the full article.

The age of the property will play a huge role. New construction (a home built within the last 5 – 10 years) will need very little maintenance. Homes 10-20 years old will need slightly more. Once a home turns 20-30, though, there’s a good chance that major components, such as the roof, hot water heater, and some piping, may need to be replaced. Read the full article.

Related Video: Home Improvement & Maintenance : How to Install New Window Screens

23 Jul

How To Install Ceramic Tile

Here are some sources from the web that will help you on how to install ceramic tile:

How To: Install Ceramic Tile

Installing ceramic tile can be tricky. Successful tiling jobs are a direct result of good planning and a methodical approach. Take the time to do the right amount of prep work before you begin.

STEP 1: Assess
Begin by inspecting the surface upon which you plan to install the tile. The substrate, or what tile is installed on top of, is just as important as the tile itself. A flexing floor or a wall that is uneven can lead to broken tiles and failed grout.

Water-resistant backer board, not drywall, should be used under tile that is likely to get wet (shower walls and bathroom floors, for example). Whether it’s backer board, plywood, or concrete, the substrate needs to be sound, clean, and dimensionally stable. Surfaces need to be level or plumb and true to plane, as the pros say—that means no bumps. Wallpaper, loose plaster, flaking paint, peeling tiles or unsecured sheet flooring must be removed from the walls or floors that are to be tiled.

STEP 2: Measure
Walls—When tiling a wall, you’ll want to establish a top line that is level. Few walls are truly plumb, so use a level to mark the top line. Establish its height so that you won’t have to cut very thin tiles (or cut very thin shards from nearly full tiles) to come flush to the floor. Snap a top line on your walls, and then snap a center line, too. Be sure to lay out all the walls you plan to do before you begin tiling.

Floors—To make your finished ceramic tile surface appear symmetrical (even if it isn’t), you need to find the center of the surface first. Then measure in from the sides. Pay special attention to this step if you’re tiling a small area, where wide tiles at one edge and narrow ones at the other will make the whole job look out of balance.

Source: http://www.bobvila.com/articles/2327-how-to-install-ceramic-tile/#.VbJCN_mqqko

VIDEO: How to Install a Transition Strip From Carpet to Ceramic Tile

How to Install A Ceramic Tile Floor

Installing a ceramic tile floor may appear to be beyond the abilities of some homeowners, but most DIYers can handle it. Just don’t rush it — have a little patience! The materials are relatively easy to work with, and you can rent the tools, even the big ones.

Install ceramic tile over a subfloor that’s no less than 1 1/8 inches thick. A thinner subfloor will cause the floor to flex due to the weight of the tile. A flexing subfloor results in cracked tiles and grout — and a lot of headaches. Most tile manufacturers recommend installing a cement backer board instead of any other type of underlayment, such as plywood. The boards come in 3-x-5-foot sheets and are available where tile and grout are sold. Lear More Here.

Porcelain & Ceramic Tile That Looks Like Wood – The Definitive Buyers Guide

One of the biggest new trends in home decor over the past few years is the rise of porcelain and ceramic tile that looks like wood. This kind of wood tile has always been available but has only recently found favor with global decor trendsetters, thanks in large part to vastly improved technologies that make the wood more realistic than ever. Read More Here.

17 Jun

Ceramic Tiles Types and Uses

Porcelain Tile Flooring vs. Ceramic Tile Flooring

Tile flooring is the perennial choice of homeowners who are looking to redo the floors in their kitchens or bathrooms. Tile flooring is water resistant, durable, easy to clean, and versatile. What’s not to like? There are a lot of different types of tile flooring to choose from though, and if you’re not a flooring pro you may be a bit confused about where to start. Do you want glass or slate tile? Ceramic or porcelain? What does travertine even mean? That’s why Floor Coverings International of Orange County and Middletown, NY is here to help! In this post we’ll compare and contrast two popular tile flooring options, ceramic tile flooring and porcelain tile flooring, so that you can decide which one is right for you.

What’s the Difference Between Ceramic and Porcelain Tile Flooring?

While they are often treated as two separate flooring materials, porcelain tile flooring is actually just a subset of ceramic tile flooring. Ceramic tiles are made from clay that is kiln-fired after being shaped into tiles and glazed. Find more…

Ceramic Tile vs. Porcelain Tile

Ceramic tiles are more absorbent and delicate than porcelain tiles, so they work better in indoor places where they are less likely to get damaged. Porcelain tiles are usually more expensive than ceramic ones, but they’re more durable and stain resistant. Porcelain tiles, which are denser than ceramic tiles, can be used outdoors, for kitchen countertops, walls and floors in high traffic areas. Also note that if you want to use porcelain tile outdoors, you must be sure to choose one that was made for outdoor use, because not all of them are. Find more…

VIDEO: How to Remove Ceramic Floor Tile

Three Basic Types of Ceramic Tiles

Ceramic tiles are mainly of three types. Basically ceramic is the mixture of clay and sand with natural substances. Each type of ceramic tile is quite different from each other. If it’s the regular on you don’t get many options. But, while choosing decorative tiles you need to understand each type and then decide which is ideal for you. Find more…

How to Choose the Right Kitchen Floor

You scoot chairs across them. Kids play on them. Family pets sprawl out on them. No doubt about it, kitchen floors take a beating. That’s why it’s so important to do your research before selecting a new floor for this all-important room. Find more…

05 Jan

Ceramic Wall Tiles

Ceramic Wall TilesOne of the famous flooring and wall tiles for residential and commercial spaces worldwide are ceramic tiles. It is a great option for back splashes, shower rooms, kitchen sinks and a lot more. Ceramics are known to be environmentally friendly and minimizes the cause of household allergens, heightens the home’s worth and is one of the best choice in walls and floors. It is also practical and functional, not to mention the beautiful designs, various shapes and sizes that you get to choose from.

Every home had used ceramic tiles one way or the other. There are many benefits that you can get from using this type of tiles as follows:

  • Environmentally friendly. Since these are made from clay, sand and glass, they are considered safe to use. These raw materials in combination with recycled materials create a ceramic tile. They are also known to make your homes cooler, thus there is the tendency to lower your electric consumption. During winter, there are also insulating characteristics that can be beneficial.
  • Convenient to maintain. Ceramic tiles are easy to clean and maintain, and there is no need for special cleaning products to make it shine and bright.
  • No complex cleaning involved. A sweep and a wash can already tidy these tiles up. In kitchen walls and sink, you use soap and water to simply wipe away stains.
  • Grout in between tiles. Although Ceramic tiles are convenient to clean, the grout can get dirtier compared to the tiles. You can use grout cleaning products available in the market.

Ceramic tile is a dependable and a versatile material used for finishing. It can be installed almost anywhere and can withstand moisture and resist scrubbing than any other materials. The installation can be an easy task which can readily be done by anyone. Some tools for this procedure is needed. Here are simple tips to remember when doing the installation process:

  • Check on the weak walls that need to be replaced before installing ceramic tiles.
  • Press on the wall, because if it gives way or feels softer, it may need some work to do.
  • Evaluating the wall’s structure before installation is a must. A weak wall may cause the tiling job to fall or break down.
  • Molds can also be destructive. You will need a tiling board to work as a back up. Do not install the ceramic tiles directly to the wall because the board will work as protection from warping and cracking your tile work.
  • Use a measuring tape to measure accurately your location and remember to be wary on the level. This will serve as a guide to keep tiles straight.
  • You can use a chalk snap line to mark the location compared to drawing a line. It is more accurate to do so by simply placing a nail to both ends where you want your tiles installed.
  • Dry fit, cut size tiles according your desired look. Measure how much space is necessary and use a diamond tipped saw when cutting the tiles.

How to Select Ceramic Tiles Properly

  • Halls and Corridors. These are entrance points that experiences traffic intensity and where some forms of abrasive materials are carried on the inside of the house or buildings. Highly abrasive tiles should be used in these areas, with anti-slip and stain resistance properties.
  • Living Room areas. This area needs tiles that are not really abrasive, but more on stain resistant. Soft shoes are often used in this area, and before reaching this portion of the premises, a lot of dirt materials such as sand were already left in the entrance hallways.
  • Balcony, elevated areas. This portion is exposed with fluctuated temperatures, and require tiles that have low water absorption and freeze-resistance properties.
  • Kitchen and Bathrooms as we already know, need more water and stain resistant properties since these areas are prone to water related activities.


Tiles are fabulous especially when used as decors. If you have the minds of an artist, you can easily design parts of your homes using ceramic wall tiles. If you are on a tight budget, there are also tips on how to use these tiles beautifully without overspending. Those who are luxurious enough to buy and choose what tiles they want can even be more creative to make their spaces really look extravagant using these materials. Even so, everything will all depend on what you want to do with your rooms and homes to make it look bright and cozy.