Caulking Can Be An Easy Project
19 great tips before you start
Spring is home improvement time. Generally speaking, this falls into major categories such as: spring cleaning, lawn and garden work, maintenance and repairs, upgrades and the usual list of accumulated small things.
Deciding what to do (and in what order) is an annual survival technique for those emerging from a long winter hibernation — and the answer is obvious. Spring cleaning requires lots of motivation and dedication. Lawn and garden work (once started) goes until next fall. And doing “big stuff” requires dragging out tools and costs some evenings and maybe weekends as well.
Thus, for those wanting to “ease” into their chores — the “honey-do” list wins hands down. And this year, completing it (and then some) is incredibly easier and more creative than ever.
Previously, it required digging out a full complement of repair “goodies” — glues, caulks and adhesives, nails, screws, hooks and duct tape — all in preparation for that which needed to be done.
Not this year. Many quick and creative household tune-ups can now be found in a handy tube of all-purpose adhesive caulk.
Besides all the traditional uses (such as small caulking jobs for the kitchen and bath), here are a few ideas and interesting uses:
- Loose tile in the shower? On a countertop or backsplash? Remove it, add a few dollops and press it back into place. In 24 hours, you’re good to go. Grout needs a touch-up? Use some there too.
- Noisy cabinet doors or drawers that slam shut with a “bang?” A dab on inside corners (or on the frame) serves to quiet “bumpers.”
- Keep picture frames and mirrors hanging straight with a dab on corners too.
- Make non-scratch, non-slip “feet” for soap dishes, liquid soap dispensers and ceramic canisters.
- Flower pot or patio table rocks back and forth due to an uneven surface or bottom? To make “self-leveling” feet, turn it over, add a few dabs, let it partially set up (six or seven hours) and place the bottom or legs down on pieces of wax paper right where you want it. Next day, you’ll have a “solid” fit.
- Toilet tank lid doesn’t fit right? Scrapes and grinds because its loose? Put a bead around the top edge of the tank or inside the lid. Let dry for 24 hours and replace for a snug (and quiet) fit.
- Caulk any gaps or cracks that appeared over the winter. Saves energy, prevents water damage, and improves appearance! Touch up windows, doors, baseboards, tubs & sinks and much more!
- Want wood baseboard where it cant be nailed, like around your bathtub? Glue it in place with adhesive/caulk instead.
- Repair cracks and holes in walls, molding or railings (or hide mitering mistakes). Leave white or paint within two hours.
- Loose linoleum, floor tiles or wood trim? Glue down with adhesive/caulk.
- Use as wallpaper “helper.” Glue loose edges back into place and seal to prevent curling due to moisture.
- No need for mounting holes in exterior surfaces for hooks, signs, decorations or thermometers. Just apply adhesive/caulk onto the item, tape it into place and let dry. Great for brick, stucco and all types of siding. (Adhere address numbers on the house and mailbox too.)
- Mount pegboard panels on studs in garage, carport or in the attic for storage.
- Firm up wobbly chair and table legs.
Before running off to attack your “honey-do” list with a tube of adhesive/caulk, have a look at the following handy tips. They will make your projects go more smoothly and render professional results.
- Always “knead” the soft tube to ensure a smooth adhesive/caulk mixture.
- Have everything you need ready before you start.
- Test flow and practice on scrap material first.
- For better “control” on smaller jobs, squeeze adhesive/caulk into a disposable container first (paper cup, bottle cap or jar lid) and apply dabs or dots with an applicator stick or toothpick.
- To smooth a bead of adhesive/caulk, use a popsicle stick or moistened finger. Many pros use an ice cube for a “slick” finish.