The brick foundation in the basement of my house built in 1920 has been flaking over the last year. Along with the flaking, there is a fine white powder that is falling to the ground. I plan to scrape the loose material from the foundation with a wire brush and then apply some bleach to remove any mold. What kind of paint should be applied that will allow moisture to evaporate?
I am worried about potential frost problems in my basement. I recently completed some landscaping changes, and in the process exposed the footing of a concrete block wall about 4.5 m (15 ft) in length. The foundation was originally 1.2 m (4 ft) below grade, and it is now about 90 cm (3 ft) in depth. I have often heard that 1.2 m (4 ft) is the absolute minimum to prevent frost. Am I going to encounter problems, and if so, what can I do to prevent them?
I plan to shut down my cottage for the winter, but I realize that some heat must be generated in the cottage to protect its foundation from frost damage. What is the ideal temperature for this?
I want to insulate the crawl space in my basement. I was told that I should install a vapor barrier. Is this true?
My cottage is built on solid rock. Over the years I have encountered problems with moisture in the basement. In the past I have had to replace floor joists under the first floor. I am sure that the moisture is coming from condensation and not seepage. Should I install a vapor barrier directly under the floor joists?
The stone wall in the basement of my 90-year-old house is constructed with an exposed wall of either cement or plaster that is crumbling and becoming very porous. What can I do to fix it?
I am having a problem with the coating over my concrete foundation where the outside wall meets the grass. It has been flaking off. Is there a product that I can use to repair this?
I plan to install a bathroom and wood flooring in my unfinished basement. The concrete floor that is there now is very uneven. What should I do to even the concrete floor before installing the hardwood floor?
We recently bought a house whose previous owners built a second-story addition. Unfortunately, they did not install a support wall. The result is that the ceiling above has sagged considerably in the middle. Is it possible to add support without having to install a support wall?
Just how much insulation is really required in a basement?
I live in a basement apartment with some rather noisy upstairs neighbors. Is there anything that I can do to better soundproof my apartment?
I am refinishing my basement. I have installed white polystyrene panels, but I am not sure whether or not I should install 2x4s directly over the polystyrene panels or if I should cut out strips of the panels to allow the 2x4s to be flush with the concrete wall behind the insulation. Which method is better?
To fashion unique napkin rings for special dinner parties, gather sections of deciduous vines in the fall. Good choices for this project are grapevine, honeysuckle, trumpet vine, and wisteria.
These fragrant, topiary-like decorations last for years, and they aren't difficult to make. The ends of the rosemary sprigs stick right into the florist's foam — no glue necessary. Just work carefully, especially when trimming the sprigs to the same length.
Everyone needs a spoon rest beside the stove, and this one is as much fun to make as it to use. Sculpey clay is used here because it is more pliable and easier to roll out than other clays on the market.
Stunning yet simple, this lush arrangement looks great surrounded by groups of glowing candles. Use it on a mantel or as a fabulous centerpiece.
Turn your Christmas cards into a decorative focal point by pinning them to lengths of pretty ribbon attached to a curtain rod.
This adorable — and helpful — gift is easy to create with some paint, photos, and biscuits.
For a super-fast centerpiece, try making this gorgeous one created just for us by New York City prop stylist Jo Waller. Use a low bowl for your dining table and a footed bowl for a buffet. You’ll find Fun-Tak, ribbon, and dried pepper berry sprigs at the crafts store, and eucalyptus branches and baby’s breath at the florist.
This two-minute centerpiece will suffuse the room with a buttery glow, especially beautiful in front of a mirror. Take your wreath with you to the candle store to be sure the arrangement you desire will fit inside it, and be sure to invest in dripless tapers.