Mak­ing Sense of Main­te­nance


Victorian Homes - - Contents - By Tonika Reed

Learn how to save money and be­come your own handy­man or woman.

O wn­ing a Vic­to­rian home can re­quire a lot of work, from re­uphol­ster­ing and sand­ing, to re­grout­ing, fix­ing win­dow­panes and even main­tain­ing gut­ters. Pre­serv­ing the in­tegrity of your his­toric home while mak­ing nec­es­sary up­dates and re­pairs can be tough. Not to men­tion, it can be costly. With some help from the book How To Fix Any­thing, com­piled by the ed­i­tors at Pop­u­lar Me­chan­ics, you can learn how to do most of the nec­es­sary home re­pairs your home re­quires. This easy, step-by-step read shows you how and why things may have gone awry.


Start­ing with grout and toi­let re­pair, this book jumps right in with re­pair and main­teinance on your bath­rooms. One of the first is­sues on the ta­ble is the an­noy­ance of a drip­ping toi­let. “If the toi­let runs con­tin­u­ously in a faint trickle, look to the fill valve,” the au­thors say. Af­ter iden­ti­fy­ing what you need to re­pair, the book goes on to list five other handy sug­ges­tions for what to do if the noises of your toi­let are keep­ing you and your fam­ily up at night. This drip­ping can com­monly hap­pen in older homes, which are in need of up­dates or other mi­nor re­pairs.

An­other com­mon is­sue in older homes is min­eral buildup in the shower head. To rid your shower head of block­age, “fill a Zi­ploc bag with vine­gar, place it around the shower head, then se­cure it in place with a rub­ber band or zip tie. Af­ter a few hours, take off the bag and flush the shower head with

wa­ter.” This will dis­solve and min­i­mize the block­age, al­low­ing the wa­ter to flow freely when you turn it on.


Some other tips the book lists in­clude sug­ges­tions on how to deal with diseased yards, se­cur­ing asphalt shin­gles and clean­ing gut­ters. Along with tips about how to main­tain, the book some­times even sug­gests you make your own clean­ing de­vices. For ex­am­ple, “To clean your gut­ters: Take a plank of an ap­pro­pri­ate width for your gut­ter and at­tach an old scrub brush to one end and a beveled board to the other (or just bevel the plank).” With 200 re­pairs listed that any­one can do, this book also goes on to help home­own­ers with not just homes, but also cars, gad­gets and even back­yards. This book is a great ref­er­ence tool, handy dur­ing an emer­gency or use­ful if there’s a prob­lem you may not un­der­stand.


We all want “to be the per­son who doesn’t have to call a handy­man ev­ery time there’s a rip in the screen door or the shower drain is mak­ing a funny sound,” the au­thors write. “We want to be a re­source for friends and fam­ily, of­fer­ing tools, ad­vice, and the oc­ca­sional help­ing hand.” This book can help you be just that. Since each home works within the lim­its it was con­structed, it’s im­por­tant to know how to re­pair and main­tain the orig­i­nal and tra­di­tional as­pects of your Vic­to­rian home. That’s why with the help of the book How To Fix Any­thing, you can be­come a Jackof-all-trades, work­ing to re­pair and main­tain your Vic­to­rian on your own time and in your own way.

With the help of the book, Howtofix­any­thing, you can be­come a Jack-of-all-trades, work­ing to re­pair and main­tain your Vic­to­rian on your own time and in your own way.

How To Fix Any­thing from the ed­i­tors of Pop­u­lar Me­chan­ics, pub­lished by Hearst Books, © 2018; ster­ling­pub­lish­, pop­u­larme­chan­

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