Handyman: Projects you can do over Labor Day weekend
With the Labor Day weekend coming up, you may be planning your last trip up north or that final big barbecue party of the season. But a three-day weekend can also be a great time to get a jump on doing some maintenance around the house.
Here are some projects you should be able to tackle during the Labor Day weekend.
Caulking windows, showers and tubs
While I wouldn’t ordinarily combine bathroom and outdoor projects, I do when it comes to caulking. If you already have the caulk removal tools and caulk gun out, you might as well accomplish both of these tasks.
With winter on the horizon, it is a great time to ensure the cold air doesn’t seep into your home get by doing some window maintenance.
Start by checking the caulking around your windows to look for any gaps and seams that need to be caulked or hardened caulk that needs to be removed and re-caulked.
If the caulk has hardened, first use a product like 3M’s Indoor/Outdoor Caulk Remover, 3M.com, to soften the old caulk and then remove it with a plastic caulk removal tool or a linoleum knife. Then clean the area around the window after removing it and re-caulk it with a high-end, waterproof, paintable product such as GE Window and Door Supreme Paintable Silicone, caulkyourhome.com.
Once you are done with the window caulking, turn your attention to your bathtub or walk-in shower. Remove all the old caulk using the same plastic caulk removal tool or linoleum knife you used for removing window caulk. Then wash the area with X-14, x14brand.com, to get rid of any mold. After it dries, apply a nonpaintable silicone like DAP Kitchen & Bath 100% Silicone Sealant, dap.com.
The next day you can spray Concrobium Mold Control, concrobium.com, on the newly dried caulk bead to keep the mold and mildew from growing. For a bathtub, first fill it about halfway with cold water before stripping and re-caulking. Then drain the tub after the new caulk dries.
Organize the garage, and give the door some TLC
With fall approaching, it won’t be too long before you will need to store your outdoor furniture and other warm weather items in the garage for the winter. So make sure you will have enough room to do that by cleaning and organizing it now.
Before you get started, make sure you have some type of storage system in the garage to help you get things organized. If you already have shelves and storage hooks hanging from your walls, you will just need to spend time putting things away and hanging lawn and garden items. But if you basically use your entire garage floor for storage, you can hang some shelves and even put up pegboard on the walls to hang hooks to improve your storage capabilities. You can also go online now to sites like Whirlpool’s Gladiator Garage Works gladiatorgw.com, or RedLine Garage Gear, redlinegaragegear.com, and order some garage organization storage systems now so you will be ready to complete this project over the Labor Day weekend.
When you are ready to start, move all your garage items out into the driveway, then sweep the floor and clean it with a good all-purpose cleaner such as tri-sodium phosphate or Simple Green. If you have oil stains, you can also use ACT Concrete Cleaner, actcleaners.com Pour-N-Restore, pour-n-restore.com.
Next, store items you still use and get rid of the things you don’t need anymore.
While you are working in the garage, it is also a good time to give your garage door some TLC to make sure it opens and closes properly. Many people think putting grease in the tracks is the best way to keep it from squeaking when it opens and closes, but grease collects dirt and can gum up the tracks. If you have grease on the tracks, clean it with a paper towel using Contractors’ Solvent, de-solv-it.com or another solvent-based cleaner. Then use a good quality spray lubricant like Liquid Wrench, liquidwrench.com and spray the door’s moving parts including the hinges, rollers, cables and springs.
If you are real industrious, you can accomplish all of these projects over the three-day weekend and still have time for a little end-of-summer entertaining.
For more home improvement advice, call “The Handyman Show With Glenn Haege” on WJR-AM (760) at (866) ASK GLENN, (866) 275-4536 from 8-10 a.m. Saturday and from 10 a.m. to noon Sunday. “The Handyman Show” can also be heard on more than 135 radio stations nationwide.