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Home Improvement Tips & Advice

  • Transcript

    Hosts: Tom Kraeutler & Leslie Segrete

    (Note: The timestamps below correspond to the running time of the downloadable audio file of this show.)


    (theme song, commercial)

    TOM: Coast to coast and floorboards to shingles. This is The Money Pit Home Improvement Radio Show. I’m Tom Kraeutler.

    LESLIE: And I’m Leslie Segrete.

    TOM: 1-888-MONEY-PIT. 888-666-3974. Call us with your home improvement question right now. You’ll get the answer and a chance to win a great prize because we’re giving away the Ryobi MultiTASKit this hour. It’s worth 50 bucks. Call us right now. 1-888-MONEY-PIT.

    So, Leslie, I’ve been moseying around my own money pit and …

    LESLIE: And what have you found?

    TOM: You know how we’re always recommending the braided steel hoses, for like washing machines, as being like the most durable option?

    LESLIE: Okay. What happened?

    TOM: Well, I have braided steel hoses in … for my kitchen sink. And I’ve noticed that the rubber hoses beneath them have blistered right through the steel. (laughing)

    LESLIE: Oh.

    TOM: It looks like a blister about to break and it’s going to flood the entire first floor of my house.

    LESLIE: So what are you going to do?

    TOM: I’ve got to replace them. But I was very disappointed because here we are telling people that that’s the best hose to get – and it probably is and I’ve never seen one break down until today.

    LESLIE: Yeah. And now you’re eating your words.

    TOM: I am. I am.

    LESLIE: I mean it, they look very, very cool and I’m always trying to figure out what other projects can I make out of it. You know, can I make interesting drawer pulls? Can I …?

    TOM: You like the artistic version.

    LESLIE: I think … I think they’re beautiful. Like I think there’s something very attractive about them, not to mention that they’re super functional.

    TOM: Yeah. So do as we say; once in a while do as we do. (laughing) But do this.

    LESLIE: So now you’re going to have a major project on your hands.

    TOM: No, it’s not that bad. They’re just … you know, easy to unscrew and easy to replace. But I’ve got to drag …

    LESLIE: Right. But you’d better do it before it happens.

    TOM: I’ve got to do it before it happens. I’ve got to drag all the soaps and everything else that are stored by the family under the kitchen sink. And I’ve got to squeeze my large body into a small cabinet and … (laughing) you know. It’s not going to be pretty but it’ll get done. (laughing)

    So whether your home improvement project is pretty or not, call us right now at 1-888-MONEY-PIT. We’ve got a great show in store for you. Fabulous guest coming up.

    LESLIE: Yeah, we’ve got a great guest. We’ve got Joan Kohn. She is a bathroom designer and she’s going to tell us on what’s all luxurious. And not so much luxurious anymore but almost a necessity. How people are really starting to make their bathrooms a wonderful place to escape and worthy of the rich and famous. And even worthy of the everyday folks. So, good ideas from her to have a wonderful, relaxing bathroom experience.

    TOM: Bathrooms, I think, are some of the hardest rooms to redecorate because they’re small.

    LESLIE: Well …

    TOM: So it’s not like you have a lot of room to work with.

    LESLIE: They can be small. Plus, if you only have one in your house, what exactly do you do when you’re about to undergo a renovation?

    TOM: Yeah. Can’t take it out of service.

    LESLIE: No. I always joke that we only have one … one full bath. And I always say, ‘Gosh, if we were ever to do something, I know we’d be showering at the gas station down the road.’ (laughing) Like, ‘Hey, do you mind if we just come in for a minute? We won’t be long.’

    TOM: 888-666-3974. Call us with your home improvement question. Let’s go to the phones.

    LESLIE: Mitchell in Florida finds The Money Pit on WWBA in Tampa. And how can we help you?

    MITCHELL: Hi, guys. Thank you for taking my call.

    LESLIE: You’re so welcome. What’s on your mind?

    MITCHELL: Well, my wife would like me to put in a greenhouse and I’d like some ideas on how to build a nice, but not too large, greenhouse.

    TOM: Is it going to be a stand-alone greenhouse, Mitch? Or is it going to be like attached to your house?

    MITCHELL: It will actually be a stand-alone but close to the house, unless you recommend otherwise.

    TOM: Okay. Well, that’s a fun project. I mean it’s basically a shed with glass walls. And so the first thing that you need to do is to prep the soil and create a good foundation for that. And you need to check zoning on this because the best thing for you to do is to actually put a shallow footing in and some concrete block and form a very level, solid, even foundation wall all around the outside of that.

    LESLIE: Well, also, you would want to do that because you need to make sure it’s environmentally stable, especially with the weather that they get down there.

    MITCHELL: Absolutely.

    TOM: Yeah, exactly. So that’s the first thing that you need to do. So I mean this is a lot of work. This is like building a shed or building a small house.

    LESLIE: Well, also, aren’t there some … aren’t there some prefabricated greenhouse kits out there?

    TOM: Well, that’s what I was thinking. You know you may be able to find a prefabricated kit that’s going to be a lot easier and a lot less expensive for you to buy and install than doing it yourself.

    MITCHELL: That is a great idea. I … the genesis for the idea came from a relative. We went to visit somebody overseas and he had an elaborate greenhouse. And, of course, I’m not familiar with their codes – with their building codes – but it was the genesis for the idea and I couldn’t wait to get back to begin building the ground work for that project.

    LESLIE: Well, I think these prefab greenhouses are probably the best way to go. And then, what you need to sort of do to make it a little bit more stable for your area, is check out what the hurricane codes are to make sure that if, in the event of a strong wind, this is going to stay where it belongs.

    TOM: Yeah, you don’t want it to be picked up and tilted over. So that’s why it has to be connected straight through to a solid foundation. Because it could become airborne. I mean look at what happens to all of those screen rooms around the pools down there, when the winds come through.

    MITCHELL: Guys, that’s great information. I really appreciate it. I will follow up and if I have any questions, I will give you a call back.

    TOM: Alright, Mitch. Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT. 888-666-3974.

    LESLIE: Walter in Florida wants to talk about framing a house and what tools are best. So have you started the project yet or are you getting ready to?

    WALTER: I’m just getting into the trade. I’ve been in for about four months now and I’ve got all my hand tools and I’m contemplating which brand and what voltage to go with. And I’m not … I’ve talked to a bunch of guys but I was just wondering what you all had to say about it.

    TOM: Well, if you’re a professional, then I would recommend you look at the Ridgid line of tools. R-i-d-g-i-d.

    LESLIE: Yeah, they’re framing nailer is really nice.

    TOM: Leslie uses Ridgid stuff all the time on While You Were Out.

    LESLIE: Well, I really like them. And the compressor-generated tools – the pneumatic tools – have such wonderful features that really make them user-friendly; especially when you’re up high on a ladder or in a precarious situation. It kind of keeps everything that you need on you. It has an interesting hook where you can hang it off your tool belt. All of the … the rapid fire to single fire; that little switch is right at your fingertip, at the trigger. And the point where the tool attaches to the air hose has like a swivel head on it. And while, once or twice, I’ve caught my hand in it, it really is helpful in the fact that as I’m reaching around, it sort of gives and goes with me. So I think they’ve done a lot of great advancements in their design and that’s all happened really recently. So … and they’re really durable.

    WALTER: You’d recommend the air hoses instead of the ‘pass-float’ tools.

    LESLIE: Well, I like … I like pneumatic tools …

    WALTER: Okay.

    LESLIE: … but I’m not a framer.

    WALTER: Okay.

    LESLIE: What about you, Tom?

    WALTER: What about the (inaudible)?

    TOM: Well, now, when it comes to nailing, I would use the battery-powered, not the air hoses. Because you don’t want to drag the hoses around. I think that’s what you’re asking. Correct, Walter?

    WALTER: Yeah, as far as using ‘pass-floater’ or air hose just for framing a house.

    TOM: (overlapping) Yeah. Right. I would recommend … for that, I would use battery. And you asked about … also asked about voltage.

    WALTER: Yes.

    TOM: The bigger the battery, the longer the run time. When you’re framing …

    LESLIE: Well, also the heavier the tool is.

    TOM: Well, it’s also heavier. But you know what? When you’re framing, you can’t get power. Getting power is sometimes a challenge. You’ve got to run off a generator or you’ve got to run long cords. So I would always probably opt for the bigger the voltage. Because you’re really going to have more power, get more job done.

    WALTER: Well, I know that DEWALT makes an 18-volt line that a lot of people use and I was wondering about that. Because a lot of people use the 18-volt rather than the 24-volt.

    TOM: I think what we’re seeing now, Walt, is that the 18-volt has become more of the consumer line or the serious DIY line. Ryobi is a fabulous name, too. It’s designed pretty much for the serious do-it-yourselfer or the consumer; and all that stuff is 18-volt. Same company, TTI, makes Ridgid at the 24-volt level, which is a lot tougher and designed to take a lot … take the abuse that a professional would throw at it every single day.

    WALTER: And they make the full line of 7

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