3 Things Every HomeOwner Should Know How To Do

You don't have to be a professional handyman to tackle every little thing that goes wrong at home.  Here are 3 of the most common household problems.

Clogged Toilet : There's a pretty good chance that at some point in your home owning lifespan you will need to deal with a clogged toilet.  Don't panic.  You can more often than not resolve the problem yourself with a little plunger know how.  First off, a toilet plunger is not the same as a kitchen sink plunger, a toilet plunger has a higher rounded dome with an extended flange on the underside that fits into the toilet bowl drain.  Before you begin, you'll want to make sure there is enough water in the bowl to cover the rubber top of the plunger.  If there isn't enough water, don't flush the toilet, it will overflow.  Instead, collect some water from the tub faucet in a bucket and use that to fill the bowl.  Place the plunger over the drain in the bottom of the toilet and with a downward thrust, invert the rubber cap to force air into the drain.  When released, the plunger will create a vacuum. sucking up air and water with it.  If a single plunge doesn't work, try it again and again.  If the problem persists, you may need to pick up an auger, a snake like device that can be threaded through the drain by a crank handle to loosen the blockage.

Power Outage: The loss of power is one of every homeowners worst fears.  That's why it's always good to have a working flashlight on hand.  Rather than keeping one in a kitchen drawer or on a workbench, keep several in various rooms of the house. If you've lost all power, look outside to see if your neighbors are dark as well.  If so, this is a utility company that should be reported immediately.  If it appears that yours is the only house that is affected, you'll need to go to the electrical panel or fuse box that controls the power to your house.  Use the flashlight to see if one of the circuit breakers has tripped, it will be the one breaker pointing in the opposite direction.  Flip the switch and the power should return.  If you have a fuse box rather than a circuit breaker, you'll need to locate the blown fuse.  It will be the one blackened and darker than the others.

Fireplace Care: There's nothing like a warm fire to take the evening or morning chill out of the house.  But fireplaces as desirable as they are, do require routine care and maintenance.  While some issues, like soot buildup and chimney repair, require the services of a pro, every homeowner should be able to make sure the flu and damper are in good working order, and, at the very least, should know how to dispose of ashes safely.  To accomplish the latter, begin by brushing the ash into the center of the hearth.  Scoop the material into a metal container with a lid, and place it outside away from the house and any combustible materials, such as leaves.  Let the ashes sit for two weeks before disposing of them.  Some gardeners like to use cold ash for fertilizer, so perhaps you can put your ashes to similar good use.  It's always advisable to have your fireplace and chimney inspected by a pro once a year.

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