Maintaining and Repairing your Garbage Disposal

One of the hardest working appliances in your home is your garbage disposal. And because it’s also one of the most consistent and reliable, you rarely give it a second thought… until it isn’t working! Here are a few tips for maintaining or repairing your garbage disposal so it can do its job well, followed by some pointers for what to do when it isn’t.

Items your garbage disposal can’t handle… 

  • Not only should you not put bones or eggshells through your disposal, coffee grounds are a big no-no. Frozen meats can create problems, as well. If you’ve decided that some item that has been lurking in your freezer for months needs to be tossed, allow it to thaw before feeding it through the disposal unit. Or bypass the disposal altogether and simply throw it in the regular trash.
  • Don’t pour grease down your drain/disposal either; it can easily gum up the inner workings. NEVER pour bleach, drain cleaner or any other household chemicals down there, either.

Rinsing out your garbage disposal…

  • Use cold, rather than warm water when running the disposal. Every week or so, drop a few ice cubes down the drain before operating it. This helps keep the blades sharp as well as loosening any accumulated debris from the blades.

Removing items from your disposal…

  • If you’ve dropped something in there accidentally—glass, rubber, silverware, etc.—use tongs or pliers to remove it. NEVER stick your hand down the disposal.

Repairing your garbage disposal…

  • In the event that the unit not only isn’t working, but isn’t even making a grinding or humming sound, this likely means that the unit isn’t receiving power. Before calling a repair service, check the underside of the disposal. Nearly all have a reset button located there. Press it and then try operating the unit again. That may be all that’s required to fix the problem.
  • If the disposal motor hums or makes an intermittent noise, then it is receiving power, but something has likely jammed the machinery. Don’t continue to run it, since you may well burn out the motor. Never attempt a repair a garbage disposal at this point without either unplugging the unit or turning off the power source.
  • If the blades are damaged or broken, it may be easier to replace the entire unit. While disposals aren’t necessarily inexpensive, the repair costs to fix a malfunctioning unit may come close to the price of simply installing a new one.

And, of course, you can always find help maintaining or repairing your garbage disposal by contacting your local Handyman Matters office at 1(866)FIX-MY-HOME or going to www.handymanmatters.com. Once there, you can enter your zip code and be directed to the Handyman Matters nearest you. They will be happy to assist you with fixing your old disposal or, if necessary, installing a new one.

Roof Repairs and your Home Winterization Checklist

Roof Repairs and your Winterization Checklist
A key part of the winterization process is to make sure that your home is prepared for a storm.  Perhaps it’s a monsoon, a blizzard, cooler temperatures, or just strong winds; preparing your home for the winter means to batten down the hatches.  Roofing can take the heaviest hit during the winter months, and if you ignore your home maintenance and roof repairs, you run the risk structural and interior home damage.

So how do you know what repairs to make?

  • Replace/Add Shingles Not all roof repairs need to be full overhauls.  Sometimes, a mere roofing inspection followed by the replacement of a few shingles will suffice.
  • Layer Cutoff However, the cut off point for just adding new layers of shingles to forego a roof replacement is 2 layers.  Once you hit 2 layers you are required by the International Residential Code to replace your roof.
  • Type of Shingle A roof replacement can also allow you the opportunity to opt for a heavier shingle.  Many store bought options are not optimal for roofs in high-wind areas.  If you notice your shingles blowing off, replace your roof with a sturdier shingle and cut out the regular repair costs.
  • Safety There’s a lot that can go wrong with an old roof.  Sagging and leaks can be symptomatic of larger structural issues.  Especially in higher snowfall areas, repairing compromised roofs before the weight of accumulated snow is important.  Ultimately, having a roof fall in on your house is way more problematic than the cost of roof maintenance.

While new roofs may be an expensive renovation, it’s one that can save you a lot of time, money, and stress repairing an outdated roof.  It’s these kinds of home maintenance investments that will ultimately improve the longevity of your home.  Call Handyman Matters today to get started on your roof repairs and winterization checklist, 866-FIX-MY-HOME!

Best of the Internet – Entryways

The entryway serves an important purpose in every home.  It’s akin to a waiting room, the limbo between being fully invited into a home, and standing on the porch.  It’s also probably the first thing that gets cleaned when unanticipated company is driving up the block.  What is the importance behind this room?  The entryway is your home’s first impression.  If all your guest sees is the first 50 ft. of your home, what conclusions will they draw?

Handyman Matters believes in opening up your entryways to positive interpretations.  We believe in taking this home element and transforming it into its once elegant standing as, the foyer.

But to transform an entryway to a foyer, you must consider a few key elements…

  • Space

Clear a wide doorway radius.  The more initial space, the less disorienting it will be for newcomers to step into your home.  You should try to have enough space to accommodate the special makeup of around 4 or so people.  Give your guests a second to chat and to acclimate in this open area before moving onto the rest of your home.

   

  • Organization

Like most rooms in your home, the foyer serves a specific purpose.  It is the first and last stop in and out of your home.  This means it should carry your necessary outdoor items, such as a spot for shoes, keys, jackets, umbrellas, etc.  Having a cubby system, a bench, or wall hangers will be key to getting your home organized, and at its most efficient.

   

  • Design

Similar to having extra space, it is important to not initially overwhelm your guests with design.  However, the foyer provides a unique opportunity to highlight paintings, vases, and flooring.  The key is to keep your foyer design minimal and then pick one aspect of it to highlight.

And don’t forget about lighting!  Organization is nothing without a well-lit room.  We love pendant lamps and chandeliers when it comes to lighting in your entryway.

   
Thinking about transforming your entryway into its best self? Handyman Matters is here to help.  Our craftsmen are skilled at large overhauls, and even small installations.  Give us a call today at 866-FIX-MY-HOME to begin enhancing your home’s foyer.

 

Prepare your Home for Halloween!

Will your home be a trick or treating favorite?  Halloween is a great excuse to catch up on exterior repairs, and add a little spooky ambiance while you’re at it.  And, we’re here to help.

  • Hanging Lights

A haunted house without the aura of red, green, or strobe lights is not a haunted house.  String some lights across your porch or front lawn, it will add light to walkways, as well as a festive feel.

  • Exterior Maintenance

The holiday season is a great reminder to jump on those home safety repairs.  When you’re expecting trick or treaters, it’s essential that you’ve done your necessary exterior maintenance to keep all your visitors safe. Walkway Repairs – Replace broken steps and stones, repair cracked concrete, trim back unruly branches, add walkway lights… Repair Porch – Your porch is going to experience a lot of foot traffic this Halloween.  Make sure rails, steps, and panels are all in place and functioning properly. Lighting – It’s safe to say, trick or treaters will avoid your home if your porch light is out.  Install new fixtures, maybe even go that extra mile and purchase a green, solar light.

  • Tree Décor

Are those bats in the trees?  Is that a gigantic spider web?  Trees are great for housing extra spooky details.  Harness their potential this year and hang some creative additions.

  • Other Halloween Decorations…

Christmas isn’t the only season with large home decorations.  Is there an inflatable Jabba the Hut you would like to display in your front yard? Are you looking to build a small haunted house?  The sky’s the limit.

Handyman Matters knows the holiday season is one of the busiest times of the year.  Instead of spending your weekends making safety, exterior repairs and hanging decorations, give us a call.  Our craftsmen are skilled at both large and small projects, so you can save your free time for the things you enjoy most.  Just call 866-FIX-MY-HOME to schedule your next home improvement appointment.