quick, cheap loudspeaker repair

During my working days I owned a luxury used car which I purchased with 28k miles on the clock and traded in at 140k miles 10 years later - a decision I regret, since it had character (a big wrestler looking badge for the front grill) and I should have kept and nurtured it.  At about 110k the Bose sound system deteriorated and I arranged for an audioshop to replace the tuner/CD player and, since they said the Bose speakers were incompatible with the new system, the speakers as well.  But I requested Read more [...]

2 simple fixes

Hand tools I use several hand tools for my weeding and mulching operations.  They are easily misplaced in the high grass and surrounding weeds and not discovered until, accidentally, days later.  It occurred to me that a cause was their lack of distinctiveness (blame the tools not the workman).  Their handles are either natural wood color, yellow or, the logic for this beats me, green.  So, easily camouflaged.  The solution was a small pot of cherry red paint and now, with their distinctive Read more [...]

kudos for HD

I do not promote brands or permit advertising on my site.  But when credit is due - I give it.   Some 10- 15 years ago I replaced  two defective bath tub/shower faucets which had washer valves  with new identical faucets which used ceramic valves.  Coincidentally both developed problems in the past few months.  I did not have receipts but knew I had purchased them from Home Depot. The first problem was a dripping faucet which needed a new ceramic valve - cost about $6.  I am always interested Read more [...]

new electric water heater and visit to recycle center

New electric heater The electric water heater in the basement began leaking water - a lot of water by the time I discovered what it was up to.  Most of my neighbors in this rural area have propane tanks and use propane for water heating, cooking and warming their houses.  My house has a heat pump for heating and cooling and uses electricity for cooking and water heating.  This is one of the reasons I recently installed an efficient wood stove. The electric water heater was corroded, and Read more [...]

wood stove installation (part 2)

The installer said to expect him between 8am and 9am.  He arrived shortly after 8 and finished the job by 11.15am - just over 3 hours.  And to a professional standard.  Mind boggling. He offloaded the new chimney components and I noted all were new out of unopened boxes and bore UL compliance labels. He began first with removing exterior wood siding from the chimney and then the 7/16 OSB (oriented strandboard). With the OSB sheathing removed the rear of the fireplace is visible. He Read more [...]

wood stove installation (part 1)

I have always wanted a wood stove.  Think of a box with 6 sides.  If the box is inserted into the wall of a room only 1 side faces the room.  The other sides are buried in the wall and face up, down, to the left and right and to the rear - this is the fireplace in our living room.  Now I know that a lot of the heat comes out the front of the fireplace into the room, but more goes straight up the chimney - what a waste.  My other problem with our fireplace is all the particulates it releases Read more [...]

a simple repair and a Bridge Too Far

Some repairs are straightforward, others frustrating and now there is one I began and backed off - it was a Bridge Too Far.  An instantaneously rewarding repair was replacing the gasket on the cappuccino maker - immediately thereafter we were again enjoying our once a day treat and this time without spluttering plumes of hot water. About 14 years ago I bit the bullet and purchased a good cappuccino maker (Expobar) and a coffee bean grinder. (Rancilio nicknamed Rocky).  We have enjoyed cappuccino Read more [...]

gas furnace repair

Our Carrier gas furnaces are relatively new - installed January 2001, so that's 13 years.  I read that the furnace should last beyond 20 years but repair costs become crippling and many throw in the towel and simply buy a new furnace after 15 years. Some 5 years after installation one of the furnaces would not fire up, I called the installer, the serviceman came by and said it needed a new igniter which he installed for a cost of about $190 made up of $120 for the igniter and $70 for the visit.  Read more [...]