Do It Yourself Power Washing a Deck in the Proper Way

Power washing a deck can be a daunting task even for professionals. Doing it incorrectly can lead to extensive damage to both wood and composite decking. However, as a do it yourself job, it’s not beyond reach even for DIY amateurs or novices. Be focused on the main reason why you need to power wash your deck safely. This is to wash away dirt, grime, and debris. You just need to know how to do it the right and safe way.

Watch Out and Always Be Prepared

When operating a power washer, it’s important to wear heavy duty work boots and eye protection. Wear foul weather gear if you have it because you are dealing with a dangerously strong stream of water.

Rent a Pressure Washer

If you don’t already have a power washer, visit your local hardware store and rent one. Alternatively, check with your neighbors to see if anyone can loan one to you. You can also check with relatives or close friends to see if you can borrow one, saving you the rental fee.

Move Everything and Dry Clean Your Deck

Move everything off the deck. Pressure washing damages outdoor furniture and grills. Sweep your deck with a broom to remove dust, debris, small tree branches, and leaves.

Wash the Railings First

Connect the pressure washer to your hose. The proper pressure setting to use on your deck is 1200 pounds per square inch. Never set the pressure to 1500 or more because this will cause damage to your decking. Begin on the outside of your deck and pressure wash the deck railings and the exterior of the deck in a smooth and vertical movement.

Now Wash the Deck Floor

Move onto the deck, and in a long, smooth, sweeping motion begin pressure washing the deck floor. You have the option to go over dirtier sections of the deck again to get them clean.

Letting the Deck Dry

Let your deck dry for a minimum of 24 hours. You are able to see areas that you missed more easily when the deck is dry.

If Needed Go Back and Touch Up

Look over your deck and take note of areas you missed. Take the pressure washer back out and pressure wash those areas. Let dry again for 24 hours.

The key to power washing a deck is to not use the highest pressure possible. Instead, use the pressure that cleans the deck without damaging it.

How to Replace a Stinky and Damaged Garbage Disposal

A garbage disposal unit under the sink provides a convenient way to eliminate food scraps and reduce garbage odor. However, garbage disposals are not indestructible and will eventually burn out with extended wear and tear. If your garbage disposal no longer works properly, you can save money by replacing it yourself.

The following guide provides step-by-step instructions for installing a new sink garbage disposal unit.

Turn Off the Electricity

It is important to make sure the power is off before performing any electrical work. To do this, locate the circuit breaker panel for your main power supply. Flip the breaker that controls the power to your existing garbage disposal into the off position. Make sure the power is off by trying to turn on your garbage disposal.

Remove the Old Unit

Unplug the old garbage disposal. Using a pipe wrench, unscrew the drainpipe connected to the disposal. Be sure to have a bucket and a big rag on hand to catch water trapped in the pipe. Disconnect the old garbage disposal from its mounting ring. Including the flange inside the sink’s drain hole, remove the old mounting assembly and strip residual putty from around the drain hole.

Install the New Sink Flange

From the new mounting assembly separate the new flange. The flange fits over the drain hole, and the mounting assembly fits under it. To form a putty snake and run it around the rim of the flange, roll plumber’s putty between your hands. Set the flange into the drain hole, and press it down evenly and firmly.

Attach the New Gasket

From under the sink, slip the gasket over the bottom of the flange. Place the mounting ring over the gasket, and secure it with the mounting screws that come with your new under sink garbage disposal. While holding the flange in place, snap the retaining ring over the ridge on the mounting ring. Tighten all screws until nearly all of the plumber’s putty squeezes out from between the sink and the flange. Trim excess putty, and wipe the sink clean.

Attach the New Disposal

Fit the new unit in place over the mounting assembly, and turn the mounting ring until the unit is securely engaged. Tighten the mounting lugs or bolts. Reconnect the disposal’s discharge tube to the drainpipe.

Check for Correct Installation

Before you plug in your new disposal and turn the power back on, make sure that the new disposal doesn’t leak. Run your water for a few minutes, and monitor the disposal unit and drainpipe for moisture. If everything remains dry, turn the power back on, plug in your new disposal and give it a test run.

What Should You Have in Your DIY Tool Box (or Workspace)?

Before any DIY person gains enough experience for major DIY projects, they need to first learn to have at least some basic tools in a handy tool box. This is necessary for common home repairs or small projects. Slowly, the “DIY toolbox” can have more tools as the homeowner gains more home improvement experience. All basic and handy tools, naturally, should all be together in a toolbox, tool bag, plastic tote, or plastic bucket and in one place where you can always find it.

Basic toolbox items are perfect for doing minor things like hanging pictures, spackling some wall imperfections, adjusting a door, and the like. Don’t buy super cheap items, but you don’t need top of the line either. It’s not a good idea to buy used or second hand basic tools. Just go for decent quality. There are two categories below. Prices are not included so homeowners can find the best prices themselves:

Basic DIY Toolbox –

  • Multi-end screwdriver or screwdriver set with different ends
  • Tape measure
  • 24″ level
  • 3″ putty knife
  • Slip joint pliers
  • Roll of duct tape
  • Hack saw
  • Safety glasses
  • Hammer
  • Red bar
  • Adjustable tri-square
  • Utility knife
  • 8″ Adjustable wrench
  • Basic hand saw
  • Stud finder
  • Caulking gun
  • Wood chisel

Luxury tools are pricier tools, but they can really make things quicker and easier. If you want to build that in the back yard or install new gutters, these are the items that you should not be without. Just like the basic toolbox items, don’t buy the cheapest tools you can find, and also there are sometimes good deals on used tools out there that people are selling because they are upgrading to higher end tools. Ask your friends and relatives about luxury or power tools they need to sell or get rid of. Also it may cheaper to rent certain tools that you may not use again. This may also give you the chance to use a much higher quality tool than you would have bought.

DIY Luxury and Power Tools –

Cordless drill

Jig saw

Reciprocating saw

Squeeze clamps (At least 5 of different sizes)

Small air compressor

Wet and dry vacuum

Circular saw

Folding saw horses (At least 2)

Framing square

Compound miter saw

18 gauge brad nail gun