Archive | March 2012

Repairs that come with having kids… with Hubby tips

With school holidays just around the corner your children will soon be spending more time at home which means more time to run amuck around the house and get up to all sorts of mischief.

All children have one thing in common and that is the ease with which they manage to break things. This week our Hubbies explore the top three things children destroy around the home and give you their tips on how to deal with the damage.

Permanent marker on walls

Every child that comes across a permanent marker will somehow find their way to the nearest wall and draw on it; it’s what kids do so our Hubbies suggest the following tips for dealing with the damage.

  • Act quickly, the sooner you try to clean the area, the better.
  • Try using toothpaste or hairspray to remove the pen, but be gentle when you scrub to avoid removing paint also.
  • If you find you’re too late and cleaning the wall isn’t an option, give your local Hubby a call and he can paint the area and have it looking as good as new in no time.

Small holes in walls

A little play fighting amongst siblings seems harmless, but more often than not, one thing leads to another and a light rough and tumble can quickly lead to arms and legs flying and elbows and heels going through walls. Our Hubbies suggest the following basic fix for small holes:

  • Tidy the area by removing any loose plaster with a scraper then apply a bonding agent to the area and wait until dry.
  • Cover the hole with plaster using a putty knife and let dry.
  • Sand the area then spot paint over it.

If you’re not confident you can do a good job of repairs like this or don’t have time, our Hubbies can help you out.

Broken windows

Playing with sports equipment close to the house can lead to broken glass windows. Fixing a broken window is a tricky task but if you’re committed to giving it a go yourself here are our top three tips:

  • Always wear gloves when removing broken glass from a window pane to avoid cutting yourself on sharp edges.
  • Keep a piece of the broken glass to use as a comparison at the store to make sure the replacement glass matches.
  • When repairing a large window it is best to remove the entire window and lay it on a flat surface. This will allow you to replace the glass as safely as possible.

These minor repairs may sound simple, but they can turn out to be a little more difficult than first expected.  For professional advice and assistance with home maintenance jobs, feel free to give Hire A Hubby a call.

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Rain and water damage: how to protect your home – with Hubby tips!

After years of drought, many parts of Australia are now being inundated by record levels of rainfall – not surprising for a land of droughts and flooding rains. So, now is the perfect time to inspect your home to prevent water damage.

There’s not much you can do to prevent water damage caused by flooding or severe weather, but you can protect your home against other forms of water damage.

Conducting a routine check of areas prone to water damage means you’re more likely to catch problems early before they cost you a lot of money in repairs. Ignoring water damage in the hope it will magically go away when the rain stops can result in mould growth and pose a serious health risk.

Our Hubbies recommend carrying out regular inspections of the following areas to protect your home against water damage:

  • Check your roof for leaks, cracked tiles and openings
  • Ensure gutters and downspouts are clear and free of leaves and debris
  • Check your fridge, dishwasher, washing machine and sinks for leaks and damaged hoses and pipes
  • Inspect caulking in your bathroom around the tub and sink and ensure it is sealed
  • If you notice water stains on a wall this is an indication of a broken pipe or leaking plumbing somewhere in the area.

If you notice water damage the most important thing is to act quickly as many water damaged areas or pieces of furniture can be salvaged and repaired if caught in time

While fixing water damaged areas in your home is important, if you don’t find the source of the problem and repair it the water damage will return.

Remember – prevention is better than cure and being proactive can save you money. If you notice water damage and can’t find the source of the problem call Hire A Hubby to help.

Safety tips for DIY carpentry

Many people like to try DIY projects at home and if you are just getting started on one it’s good to know some tips to make sure your work environment is safe.

People regularly ask our Hubbies to help out maintaining decks and pergolas, carports, ramps, installing door handles and locks, window repairs, assembling of bookcases, laying floor boards and general repairs and maintenance because we know what we are doing.

This week our Hubbies are sharing their top tips for safe carpentry practices and the basic steps to get you started on a job around your home.

The first thing you will need is to invest in some basic hand and power tools. It’s important to buy good quality tools and this doesn’t necessarily mean they have to be expensive, but investing in reliable, top notch tools saves you money in the long run as you will need fewer replacements and produce better quality work.

Before you attempt any carpentry work make sure you have familiarised yourself with your tools. If used incorrectly, your power tools pose a serious safety threat. Knowing your way around your tools is safer and more efficient. It’s a good idea to practice first on some spare wood for example.

Safety is one of the most important factors in basic carpentry. Our top five safety tips are:

  • Always wear safety glasses while working;
  • Don’t wear any dangling jewellery as it may get getting tangled in your equipment;
  • Disconnect tools entirely before changing blades or bits. It’s easy to bump a switch and turn a tool on accidentally so your safest option is to switch them off at the wall or even unplug them;
  • Always use sharp tools as blunt ones require more force and are at risk of bending or kicking-back; and
  • Don’t reach over a blade. After the blade has stopped use a push stick, rather than your hands, to move any scraps out of the way.

The most basic and important rule to remember with your work is to measure twice and cut once. Successful carpentry is about accuracy and experience. Practice makes perfect and will determine the quality of your work. Carpentry, even at a basic level, requires knowledge that comes with experience and you’ll be required to use tools that pose a danger if used incorrectly. If you’re not confident in your level of expertise, leave it to the professionals and give Hire A Hubby a call on 1800 803 339 or visit www.hireahubby.com.au for more information.

Autumn is here – Hire A Hubby tips for Autumn leaves

Autumn has arrived and that means deciduous trees will start dropping their leaves everywhere including into your gutters and onto your deck.

Luckily Hire A Hubby is here to help, so break out the rake and your gardening gloves – it’s time to clean up the leaves.

GUTTERS

If you have autumn trees (deciduous) around your property, there’s every chance leaf litter is going to end up in your gutters. This can sometimes be unavoidable, but the tips below should help you get your gutters sparkling clean.

  • Never lean on the gutter system. This can cause damage to the system, as guttering is not made to support a person’s weight.
  • Be sure to use safe, strong ladders that will easily reach the height of your gutters. Stretching from a ladder that is not quite high enough is an accident waiting to happen.
  • Downpipes that become clogged can easily be washed out using a garden hose. If debris has become lodged and will not come out with the hose, you can use a plumber’s snake, or even just a long piece of wire.

DECKING

Leaves left to rot on your deck are a major cause of damage to timber decking. The sap and organic chemicals in the leaves will eventually eat through your deck sealant and into the timber, causing mould, rot and decay. Follow these tips and ensure your deck is a leaf free zone.

  • A regular sweep of your deck is the best thing you can do. Leaves will only damage your decking if left to decompose. During autumn it’s important to check the deck regularly and get your sweep on!
  • A common problem is leaves stuck between decking boards. Try putting a screw hook on the end of a broom handle and simply fishing them out. If your boards are too close together, tape the end of a coat hanger onto the handle.
  • If your deck has already taken significant damage and needs a deep clean and reseal, check out our tips here

IN THE GARDEN

So you might be thinking that autumn leaves are all bad, but they can actually be great in the garden. Check out the tips below to see how to use those autumn leaves to your advantage.

  • Autumn leaves are great additions to your compost pile especially when chopped or shredded. Leaves are a great source of “brown,” high-carbon material for the compost and should be combined with some green material (lawn clippings, vegetable scraps, etc).
  • Shredded leaves can also be used as organic mulch. Simply apply a two or three inch layer of shredded leaves to your garden beds, keeping the mulch from directly touching the stems of your plants. The mulch will help the soil retain moisture, stay cool, and limit weeds.
  • If you decide to simply mow leaves into your lawn, rather than raking them up don’t worry! After being mown in, leaves will actually break down over winter, providing your soil with nutrients and shading the soil, resulting in fewer weeds.

Autumn leaves getting on top of you? Call the professionals at Hire A Hubby on 1800 803 339 or visit our website for more info www.hireahubby.com.au.