50 Home Improvement Skills You Need to Know

We contacted some professionals to find out what home repairs and maintenance can be done at home. From fixing a leaky kitchen or bathroom pipe to painting the outside of your home, there are a number of projects that can be completed with the right skills. Here are 50 key home improvement skills that will help you tackle any project like a pro. Replacing a shower head is a small project with a big impact.

To do this, remove the existing shower head and then tape the base of the shower arm before screwing on the new part. If you want, you can also change the shower arm while you're standing in the tub and have a screwdriver in your hand (usually sold separately). Building a planter is the perfect project for a beginning carpenter. Cut the planter to the inside width of the window frame, plus 1½ inches, and fit the pieces together with a simple butt joint.

Screw the boards and drill drain holes in the bottom. Attach the planter to the window frame with screws or sturdy brackets to ensure that your favorite flowers have a safe home. Using a caulking gun is an easy way to fill in gaps inside or waterproofing the outside. To use a sealant gun, pull back the plunger and insert the sealant tube.

Cut the plastic applicator at a 45-degree angle to reduce putty flow, and use a softer touch on the trigger for better control of the sealant. Sealing your driveway can extend its lifespan and improve its curb appeal. Make sure the weather forecast is dry, then start by repairing any cracks and washing the driveway, letting it dry overnight. Apply roadway sealant in small patches, and stay out of the driveway for 24 hours so it can set properly.

Mulching garden beds is an easy way to give your garden an instant makeover. Spread mulch evenly, 2 to 4 inches thick, and leave space around trees and shrubs for good air flow. If you need to turn off your gas meter, find an adjustable wrench and go to your gas meter. There will be a pipe that runs from the ground to the meter, with a shutoff valve approximately 6 to 8 inches from the ground.

When the gas is turned on, the valve runs parallel to the pipe. Use the wrench to turn it 90 degrees in any direction, then call your gas company to ensure that all appliances with pilot lights come back on safely. Repairing and remodeling your own home is a great way to save money and take control of the process. Some repairs and remodeling are known for DIY: painting the interior, laying plank floors, and replacing electrical outlets.

A number of other projects may not seem suitable for DIY at first, but in fact they are. In addition, there are other projects that could be just outside your current comfort zone, and that you could enjoy as a challenge or to learn new skills to improve your home.

Judy Laubach
Judy Laubach

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