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Top DIY jobs to get to grips with

October 27, 2012 by  
Filed under Home & Garden, Top Picks

Top DIY jobs to get to grips with

Whether you’ve just moved into a property or not, being a homeowner involves getting handy and being able to fix things when they fall apart. You’ll notice that work often needs to be done to maintain the appearance of your house – and here are some of the most common DIY projects you’ll encounter.

Putting pictures up

Putting pictures up is perhaps the most common DIY job you will see yourself doing in your home. This task is relatively easy, depending on the type of wall you want to hang your frames on. There are several things you need to ensure you have to hand before you start. These include a drill so you can make a hole in the wall where your bracket will go, a spirit level to ensure your picture hangs straight, a screwdriver and the correct picture hooks for your frame.

It is also a good idea to get your hands on a pipe and wire detector, so you don’t drill into a pipe or wire when completing this relatively trivial job.

Installing new shelves

Fitting new shelves is similar to putting up pictures, as you will need much the same tools to help with the job. However, this task requires a bit more care as you have to ensure the brackets are even at both ends of the shelf.

It is important to choose a good place to put up shelves as well. For instance, you don’t want them to be so low that people might bang into them, or so high that they are difficult to reach.

Hanging wallpaper

If you’re redecorating, wallpapering is likely to feature on your ‘to do’ list. It is quite difficult to wallpaper a room perfectly without any lumps or bumps, but the best way to do this is to have all the equipment you need at hand. For instance, you’ll require a smoothing brush or roller, wallpaper paste, scissors and a sponge. You might also want to have a paintbrush, long ruler and pencil at home as well.

Once you have everything ready, you can start by measuring and cutting the wallpaper, spreading the paste on the back of it and hanging it on the wall, making sure all the edges are smooth. Trim off any excess paper and clean off any surplus paste with a sponge.

Fitting a new floor

This is another big job that you should perhaps only attempt once you have got a few DIY jobs under your belt. Once you have bought good-quality engineered wood flooring, you need to start learning how to lay it.

You should look at the subfloor and work out whether you need flooring underlay if it is uneven. If you pick engineered floors with a groove or click system, these will be incredibly simple to install.

The slabs can be attached to one another without having to use any glue or nails, and most come with detailed instructions from the manufacturer so you can easily follow these.

You should also leave a 10 mm gap between the floor and the edges of the walls, as wood expands in the heat and you don’t want the space to be too tight, which may cause the wood to buckle.

Get sanding

Sanding is another popular DIY job that you should get used to. You can sand most wooden items, depending on whether they have been stained previously. Therefore, this is a great way to revamp old furniture or fixtures and fittings.

If you want to make your skirting boards look new, you can use an electrical sander on them or scrub away with sanding boards. Door frames, mantlepieces and wooden furniture can all be sanded down to a natural finish – and then you can choose to brighten them up with some paint or a gloss.

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