With the many DIY outlets around, there really is no excuse but to fix the problem yourself. This is certainly true of anything where safety is not a factor. Of course, gas boilers and more advanced electrical jobs are best left to the professionals, but there are many other jobs within the home that you can do yourself and only get better at doing.

We shall have a think about what sorts of jobs we might mean. Ones that we can tackle ourselves with relative ease and expertise.

 

Leaks

Leaks can spring up any time of the year. A common problem is to have a persistently leaking tap. It can be as simple as replacing a washer or the whole tap. Either way, all these items are available at a good DIY store, who will even have staff on hand to help talk you through the job. Or alternatively, online at home you can see close-up pictures of what you are trying to replace the worn items with and go back and forth to check the sizes. Then, you can turn to online video clips to explain to you how to do the job.

To fix a leaking tap, remember to turn off the water at the stopcock or at the point of the isolation valve. Either can be found on the pipes that are underneath your sink. Then, a spanner, that you may have already, should see you right to take the tap apart. The first thing to do is to inspect the condition of the washer. If it looks worn, then you are likely to have found your problem. If not, it may be a case of checking and tightening joints or replacing a different part.

 

Unblocking

A sign of a blockage is water overflowing. Typical areas to get blocked include sinks, baths, toilets, or drains. A good plunger is invaluable. There are three types of plungers available. These include the common sink or cup plunger, a toilet or flange plunger, or an accordion plunger.

The common sink plunger is familiar to most people as a wooden handle with a rubber cap, mostly red in colour, attached to the end of it. They work well on flat surfaces by creating a vacuum that is intended to dislodge what is causing the blockage. This type of plunger is good for use on sinks or baths.

The toilet plunger is flexible enough to fit into any drain. In addition to the traditional rubber cap of the sink plunger, it also has a soft rubber flap which folds out and will fit well over a curved surface such as a toilet drain to provide the required suction to unblock. It is perfect for toilets, as the name implies.

The accordion plunger brings music to the ears when it is described as having the capabilities to produce a lot more force. Having said that, though, it is not that easy to use. The plastic is hard, so creating the required force needed for unblocking can be challenging. Also, because the plunger is plastic in construction, there is also the possibility that you might scratch the surface of your toilet, whereas rubber plungers will not.

So, take the plunge and give it a go.

Some tips for plunging include using the correct plunger out of the ones described, creating suction by slowly pressing down on the plunger cup to create a suction, and not using a plunger after applying toxic chemicals, as you do not want those splashing around your bathroom or anywhere else.

 

Sewing

More and more DIY stores are catering for other crafts in addition to traditionally thought of DIY projects, such as carpentry, plumbing, and home decorating. This now extends into the domain of sewing and fixing clothes that would otherwise end up as rags and recycled by a charity shop. Not that there is anything wrong with that, except it is not value for money to throw away old clothes that can be revived. This can often be through transformation and turning what was once a dress into just a skirt, or trousers that were once long, into shorts. The possibilities are endless for the hobbyist or professional who is adept at using a needle, or at least controlling it while it is fixed to a sewing machine.

 

Painting

Painting is a form of fixing. If paint is flaking off, it needs renewing. We are in a sense fixing something unsightly by making our walls look pleasing again. The selection of paints available exceeds the possibilities of many rainbows. Every colour and shade conceivable can be purchased.

 

The key to a good finish is to first sand down the surface that you wish to paint and then seal it with a good wood primer. This should be left to dry for an hour. A tip between painting is to put your brush in a plastic bag and in the fridge so that it stays moist and reusable for later.

 

So, there is nothing to stop us as a home DIY enthusiast, just the motivation to start the job.