Ideas & Tips

Kitchen Remodel

Get Busy Getting Organized

kitchen_remodel_organization_picThe kitchen is typically the most used room in the house, a favorite spot for doing homework, holding family meetings, leaving messages, entertaining, as well as for preparing meals. This important room can be designed with both efficiency and attractiveness.


The key ergonomic principle in kitchen design is the "kitchen triangle," the lines connecting the center points of the three primary work areas -- sink, stove, and refrigerator. As you decide where to place appliances and counters, imagine a triangle laid over these three points and envision the family's cooks moving from one to the other. A good triangle will save steps and enhance safety as hot dishes are moved around.

Route major traffic outside the triangle; islands should cut into the triangle by no more than 12 inches. Allow adequate countertop space beside the cooking and cleanup areas.

Each triangle leg usually measures between 4 and 9 feet, and they aren't equal in length. In larger, busier kitchens, designers often establish more than one triangle. Think about a second triangle for quick meals, connecting microwave, island counter, and fridge.

How to Stain Wood Kitchen Cabinets

Home improvement expert Bruce Johnson shares some techniques for staining wood kitchen cabinets.

Start by sanding and conditioning the wood. After that’s dry, put on two coats of polyurethane and your cabinets will look just as good as any professional could have done for you.

Before you stain the cabinets, it’s important to remove all the doors and drawers to make sanding and applying the stain easier.

Use 120 grit sandpaper to lightly sand the cabinets. Always sand in the direction of the wood grain.

For the second sanding, use 220 grit sandpaper.

After sanding, apply a wood conditioner.

Use a rag to work stain down into the pores of the wood.

Make a final pass working in the grain of the wood.

Use an oil-based polyurethane with an oil-based stain.

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For sand paper, wood stain and other materials go to Grant Road Lumber at 2543 E. Grant Road. Their friendly experts will be happy to get you all the materials and advice you'll need before starting your project. Be sure to use your MyLocalHomeShow Club Card to get Contractor Pricing.

How to Protect Your Home with a Surge Protector

A home surge protector has become almost as commonplace in the home as is a personal computer, DVD player or other expensive device that is constructed with ultra-sensitive microprocessors and PCB's (Printed Circuit Boards). The typical American now uses so many of these electronic devices that it can become confusing as to how to use one of these surge protectors.

Is Your Swimming Pool Ready For The Summer?

Sidewinder-1BThe Tucson summer is quickly approaching, and it’ll be hotter than hot sooner than we all would like.

What better way to beat the heat than sitting in a refreshing pool in your own backyard?

Here are some tips from the experts at Sidewinder Custom Pools & Hot Tubs about getting your pool prepared for the warmer temperatures.

1. Be sure to check all the equipment for leaks. Look for wet areas around the pump and filters. After the hard freezes of the summer, it is very important to make sure there aren’t any problems before you begin using the equipment more frequently.

The Adventures in Painting

Tips and Tricks to Get Started on Your Home Painting Projects

paints-_low_resThe weather is warming up and now is the best time to get some of those home maintenance projects done before the summer heat sets in. With the dry air and beautiful temperatures, it is the perfect time of year for painting that living room accent wall you’ve been thinking of or redoing all the walls in your bedroom to match your new spring decor.

Here are some handy tips and ideas to help get you started on your painting adventures.

Always wear something you can get paint on. No matter how well you cover up or try not to get paint on yourself, it never fails that you will. Get everything out of the room that you do not want paint on. Be sure to cover everything that you are not able to remove from the room. You will still have to be careful to avoid any mistakes, but the better you cover up the better your chances are to avoid a mess.

Don’t be afraid of colors. For smaller rooms, lighter colors are better. Darker colors could leave the room feeling smaller and cave-like. Accent walls are a great way to bring a room together or accentuate a specific item in a room like a piece of furniture or a piece of art. Choose a color that can be used year ‘round and will compliment all your seasonal decorations. Neutral colors are good for people who only want to paint once but may move their furniture and change pieces up often. That way no matter what you put in that room or around that wall your design scheme will not be set off.

To get started you will need, lots of drop cloths and rags for clean up, masking tape, brushes, a roller, a roller pan for the paint, an extension pole for the roller, a ladder, and most importantly paint. There are two types of paint, an oil base and a water base paint. Talk to the experts at your local hardware store to determine which will be the best for your project.

Start by laying down the drop cloths around the room, lining up against the walls that will be painted. Some people choose to use plastic sheets or newspaper instead of cloths. Use the masking tape to tape the cloths to the wall, along base boards that you may not want to get paint on and in the corners of the rooms if you do not want the colors continuing onto the adjacent walls. Using the tape will help create straight lines and protect areas that you don not want to get paint on.

Once the room is prepped you are ready to start painting. Be sure to stir the paint well, after opening the cans. Pour a small amount to start with in the roller pans. Some people like to start with a brush, but for larger rooms a roller is best. Roll in straight vertical lines, slighting over lapping as you go. Make sure you leave an even layer of paint as you make your way across the wall. Corners, tight spaces, and around ceiling and floor boards is best done with a brush to avoid mishaps.

For advice on all your home painting projects or to have the experts come do it for you, call Rob Scott at Handyman Connection. Their handy professionals are ready to help in any situation. Call Rob today at (520) 797-0800 to schedule an appointment and be sure to use your Club Card for additional savings.