Show Notes: Clear the Clutter – On the House

Show Notes: Clear the Clutter

By on January 12, 2019
organize tools

Show Notes for On The House with the Carey Brothers Aired January 12, 2019

We’ve got a little of everything to get your house clear of clutter! Organizing can be overwhelming regardless of how much you have to organize, but with a focused plan and a little advice from On The House, you can tackle any project you set your mind to!

Do you know which of the items you’re throwing away are actually hazardous? Check the list we’ve provided!

Recall! There’s been a recall of a water heater. Make sure it isn’t yours!

Regret any DIY or home improvement projects? You’re not alone! Find out the projects people most regret and why.

Are you a thrifty, crafty, cheapskate? We’ve got the money-saving, DIY list for you to solve some common household problems.

Organization Tips for 2019! The list you’ve been waiting for! If Tidying Up on Netflix has motivated you, this information is for you!

Missed our live show? That’s okay, we have a podcast of the show. It’s the same thing we aired on the radio, but ready for you whenever you’re ready! Check it out here.

What is Household Hazardous Waste (HHW)?


If You Are Cleaning Out The Garage Or Closets What Do You Throw Away And How?

Household hazardous wastes (HHW) are the leftover or unused portions of chemicals and products used to clean and maintain your home.  These materials are often labeled CAUTION, WARNING, DANGER, POISON, TOXIC, FLAMMABLE, or CORROSIVE.

For safety and environmental reasons, it is illegal to dispose of HHW in the garbage, sewers, or storm drains.

Did you know things that may seem harmless are considered hazardous waste! How about kids shows with flashing lights? Yes, that’s right! They are toxic waste! 

See our full list here!

The moral to our story is; if you are in doubt about disposing of a material call your local garbage collection company.



Navien Recalls Tankless Water Heaters and Boilers Due to Risk of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

Name of product:

Navien condensing tankless water heaters and combination boilers

Navien Condensing Combination Boiler


A kit installed on the tankless water heaters and boilers to convert them from natural gas to propane can cause the unit to produce excessive amounts of carbon monoxide, posing a risk of carbon monoxide poisoning to consumers.



Consumer Contact:

Navien at 800-244-8202  from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. PT or e-mail or online at for more information.



Study: The Home Improvement Projects You’ll Regret

Sometimes you’re just up for a challenge. Or you have an uncompromising vision that only you can realize. Or maybe you don’t have the budget to hire a pro. For all these reasons and more, we share the glorious pastime of DIY home improvement projects. But they don’t all turn out well, do they? Oh no. No no no. Many of them fail, and some become legendary disasters.

As you consider your many weekends ahead in 2019, and all the wonderful ways you can upgrade your home, keep in mind the collective experience of millions who came before you… and choose your project wisely!


When it comes to DIY, you live and you learn. Some things, like refurbishing an IKEA bookshelf with chalk paint, are a breeze. Others, like rewiring your kitchen, are best left to professionals.

In the spirit of new year, new DIY projects, asked 2,000 Americans who’ve dabbled in DIY what, if any, projects they felt remorseful over.  63 percent said they regretted at least one of their home renovation projects and 33 percent said they even had to call in a professional to fix their mess.


So what topped the list of DIY projects gone wrong? Installing floor tiles, replacing ceilings and refinishing hardwood floors ranked one, two and three, while installing carpet and finishing a basement rounded out the top five. Six through 10 were

  • Installing a hardwood floor
  • Refinish cabinetry
  • Install sprinklers
  • Install shower /bath
  • and last, but not least, Interior painting

The ugly truth about ways the DIY project went wrong?

55% The project took longer than expected

50% Physically harder than anticipated

48% Technically harder than anticipated

17% Cost more than anticipated

8% Caused damage to their home

6% Injured themselves



Nifty, Handy Hints For Cheapskates

Some may think these ideas are kind of crazy. While that may be true, we also think they’re kind of brilliant.

Start Seeds in Toilet Paper Tubes

toilet roll

For an easy and green way to start seeds, save your toilet paper and paper towel tubes. Cut the tubes into 2 in. lengths and set them in a waterproof tray. Fill the tubes with potting soil and plant your seeds. When the seedlings are ready to move to the garden, plant them right in their cardboard tube. The cardboard will decompose. Be sure to keep the tube below the soil surface, so it doesn’t wick moisture away from the roots.

The Easiest Way to Refresh Dry Wood Putty

Coming to the final steps in a project and finding my jar of putty as dry as the Serengeti and hard as a rock is frustrating. My solution is to remove the putty with a screwdriver and knead it with canola oil until it’s a usable consistency. The putty isn’t quite as good as new, but it works in a pinch. It’s a messy job, so wear latex gloves.

Clothes Hanger Drain Cleaner

wire hanger

Hair clogs in the drain are inevitable; and they’re more likely if there are longhaired people in your home. I’ve found that a wire coat hanger is the most effective tool for removing them. First, untwist the wire under the hook. This leaves the hook at one end and a miniature “auger” at the other end. Push the auger end down the drain up to the clog. Bend the free end 90 degrees, forming a handle. Crank the handle so the auger bores into the clog, allowing you to pull it out.

Easy Vinyl Blade Guards

I am a stickler for keeping my cutting tools sharp and protected when transporting or storing them. I have tried almost every technique known to man when it comes to blade guards. But, I believe I have found the best blade guard yet in a simple piece of trim used when installing vinyl siding. I use under sill trim as DIY blade guards. I cut the trim piece a little long so as to cover the saw blade or knife blade fully. A heat gun can be used to flare out one end to make the guard easier to slide onto the blade. The friction holds the guard on the blade quite strong and will not easily come off.

Get Wrinkles Out of Your Laundry with Zero Effort

ice cubes

Ditch the time-consuming iron or handheld steamer to get wrinkles out of a shirt or slacks. Throw a few ice cubes or a wet washcloth in the dryer with your wrinkled clothes. As the ice melts and the water turns to steam, it will remove the wrinkles. This trick isn’t as effective with heavier clothing but is a miracle for lighter fabrics. The best part is that you don’t have to set the dryer for longer than 10 minutes for it to work.

Use Dryer Sheets to Clean Your Floors

Don’t throw away used dryer sheets. There’s another use for them. Wrap a couple of dryer sheets onto the flat head of a sweeper. The dryer sheets pick up dust and hair just as well as name-brand sweeper refills. Say goodbye to those dust bunnies!

Instant (and Inexpensive) Picture Frame Bumpers

hot glue gun

Stop wall frames from slipping out of place and scratching the wall paint by putting small dots of hot glue on the back corners of the frame. The hot glue not only prevents movement, it also holds the picture away from the wall to prevent scratches and nicks.

Lighter Not Long Enough? No Problem

We’re sure you’re stocking up on sweet smelling candles to make your home extra cozy for the colder months. But, if your candles are burning too low to reach the wick, there’s no reason to go without your favorite scent. Instead of burning your fingers, light a piece of uncooked spaghetti. It’ll reach into those deep candles and burn long enough to light the candles on grandpa’s birthday cake!

Homemade Heating Pad


Next time you have a sore neck or back, don’t reach for an electric heating pad. Instead, fill a sock with uncooked rice, tie the end and microwave it for two or three minutes. I like this better than a heating pad, as it conforms to whatever body part that needs heat. You can even put in some fragrant herbs like cinnamon or lavender to make it smell nice!



Organization and Decluttering Tips for 2019

metal drawer

You’ll need to clear out the clutter before you can move on to getting organized. Let’s start here:

Sort your belongings into Keep, Donate, and Toss piles, which will start the ball rolling as you begin your home’s transformation.

If you got a new one for a holiday gift, get rid of the old one. Clothing with stains or holes should be replaced with updated versions. Sort through your bookshelves to make room for new books, plus, your local library or school will be grateful for a donation.

Be sure to deal with your Toss and Donate piles on the same day you made them — if you leave piles sitting around, it might feel even more cluttered than before you started!

Don’t overwhelm yourself, however: this is not a one-day job. Be realistic about what you can get done. Break it up by room or by area. Living and dining room one day, kitchen and laundry room the next, and then on to the bedrooms.

Organize next

A place for everything, and everything in its place. That’s important to remember as you move on to organizing: If you can’t find or make a home for it, then it doesn’t belong in your home.

Boxes, baskets, jars, shelves; plastic, wicker, wire, glass: There are so many options for neatening your possessions and ensuring they’re readily accessible. Whatever you choose, here are some basics for keeping them organized and functional:

Put like with like. This seems like a no-brainer, until you realize you have 12 tubes of toothpaste.

Favorites up front. Things you use the most need to be the easiest to get to.

Label everything. If you’re not using clear containers, this is an especially crucial step, but even if you are, you can’t go wrong by labeling them. That way no one in your home will have an excuse for not putting things where they belong.

Break down storage spaces into even smaller units.

organized drawer

Drawer dividers separate socks from underwear; under-sink shelves allow you to see how much toilet paper you have left and your cleaning supplies; a table or shelf in your entryway with (labeled!) baskets and bowls will ensure keys, purses, backpacks, and mail can all be found quickly and easily.


That’s it for this week! Thanks for tuning and come back next week!

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