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Category >> repairs

Jan 15

Old MacDonald Had Some Barnwood

Posted by C. Mason Hearn | Tags: safety, repairs, preservation, millwork, hardwood, exteriors


What are the pros and cons of pressure-washing old barn wood, versus using a scrub brush?




Good question.   The best method depends on the condition of the wood and your intent in regards its eventual use.

Pressure washing, in most instances, may seem the easiest, fastest way to clean the surface of old wood (whether you are trying to remove the aged patina, mildew, paint, etc).  If there is old paint on it, there may be concerns regarding the hazardous release of toxins from lead-based coatings (harmful to people and the environment).  Refer to the EPA RRP rule for handling

Sep 18

Pucker-up, Pergo!

Posted by C. Mason Hearn | Tags: repairs, maintenance, floors

Hi Mason,

My husband and I installed a cheap laminate hardwood. Everyone says you shouldn't apply polyurethane to laminate. I tested two planks, and they seem to be fine. My goal is to seal the edges/seams with the poly and to add more high gloss sheen. When moisture sits on a seam and is not cleaned up right away, the edge will pucker. Thanks for your advice.



 I’m on a pun-roll, so I have to say this.  “Should the edges pucker-up when wet, that would be just swell!”  But

Aug 19

Cultured Marble Repairs

Posted by C. Mason Hearn | Tags: repairs, countertops



We have a cultured marble countertop in our bathroom, bought from a home center less than two years ago.  Some visible marks

Feb 25

Dr. House on Chasing Leaks

Posted by C. Mason Hearn | Tags: windows, window leaks, stucco, repairs, leaks, exteriors, cracks


Here's one for you ... how do you fix a leaking window - in a stucco / concrete block house ... that comes somewhere from the wall above (appears above the window), but only when raining from a certain direction ... which no one else can isolate??

In addition, if this is helpful info to know or not (?) ... we also had the entire front face of the house re-painted with 2 coats of a professionally recommended "rubberized" paint that was supposed to give and expand better with the severe high temps we sometimes have here ... the thought supposedly was that it would help fix it by

Jan 05

The French Conspiracy - Rotten Doors

Posted by C. Mason Hearn | Tags: repairs


I have a pair of wood French Doors on the exterior of my 25-year-old house, that have rotted over a number of years.  The bottoms of the doors are deteriorating, as well as the wood frame and moldings around the door.

I see that these are pretty expensive to replace; is there any way to repair this mess?  They are not leaking, but it looks awful!

Bill S.  Richmond, VA


Dear Bill:

Take heart that your situation is not at all unusual.  I see this problem on a regular basis.  If the French are conspiring to destroy a piece of the American housing stock, at least they are supporting the

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