Water Heater Safety It’s never a good idea to disable a safety valve by capping it. Perhaps this homeowner missed the MythBusters episode which showed how this mistake can allow the water heater to blow up.
Fashionable sinks haven’t sported S-traps for over 100 years. Like wearing white shoes after labor day, S-traps simply aren’t done. Of course, the lack of a high loop at the dishwasher drain is also a sad error. These mistakes will make little difference, however, to the poor soul who reaches a wet hand under the sink to turn on the disposer, only to [...]
You’ve got to ask yourself one question: “Do I feel lucky?” I’ve got to ask myself, “did Dirty Harry” install the cardboard in this attic?
The wrong thing the right way Is it still anal-retentive if you fix the symptom, but not the problem? Someone spent a lot of time doing the wrong thing the right way.
Looks good! (Not) Gutters are supposed to stop before they touch the siding or trim. By burying the end of the gutter in the trim, any leaks will flow behind the siding and trim, causing damage to the house.
An Ounce of prevention Clothes dryers cause almost 16,000 fires each year in the US. What does your dryer duct look like?
What are we trying to achieve here? We’re not sure exactly what’s going on here with this electrical setup, but it looks like the breaker on the left was tripping and someone “solved” the problem by running three strands of magnet wire to an adjacent breaker. This would certainly stop the first breaker from tripping. Of course, it could also cause the house [...]
This plumbing work stinks. Each plumbing fixture in a home connects to a drain/waste/vent (DWV) piping system that takes wastewater to the municipal sewer or a septic tank. Those sewers and septic tanks produce gases and foul odors that (unsurprisingly) we want to keep out of our homes. To do that, each fixture’s drain should have a trap that holds a small plug [...]
Et Tu, Plumber? Back in the day, this would have been the house’s “main grounding connection.” It’s where the electrical service was grounded to the house’s steel water pipe. Somewhere along the way, someone changed out the thicker steel pipe for a more slender copper tube. Disturbed rust on the screw threads shows where someone loosened the clamp to change it, but callously [...]
So You Bought a Gas Range... Our intrepid homeowner switched from an electric range to a gas range. To accommodate the new range, any electrician could easily have changed the old 240-volt circuit to a 120-volt circuit, but our hero came up with a better way: Mangle the old range cord to make an “adapter.” Why is that a problem? Let us count [...]