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Articles by Philip Schmidt


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Home Radiators are Leaking

Posted by Philip Schmidt | Mar 18, 2014

The story of home radiators begins in the 19th century and features a motley cast of characters, each with its own temperament and vulnerabilities. There are steam radiators, relics...


Photo: Boa-Franc/Flickr

Hardwood Floor vs Engineered Floor

Posted by Philip Schmidt | Mar 13, 2014

On the surface, a traditional solid hardwood floor and an engineered wood floor are pretty much identical. They look the same. They can be made with the same wood species. They're...


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Help, My Air Conditioner Is Rattling!

Posted by Philip Schmidt | Mar 13, 2014

Virtually everything in the world with moving parts eventually starts making a mysterious and troubling sound. Cars tend to be the worst culprits for this, but around the house HVAC...


Photo: KitAy/Flickr

What's the Best Choice for Horse Fencing?

Posted by Philip Schmidt | Mar 07, 2014

The best choice for horse fencing is a material that meets your practical needs, your budget and your aesthetic and maintenance requirements. In other words, there’s no simple...


Photo: Andy Franklin/Flickr

Stamped Concrete Cost

Posted by Philip Schmidt | Feb 14, 2014

What's not to love about concrete? It's relatively inexpensive, it installs quickly, its durability is unmatched, and its beauty is...Oh, wait a minute; that's what's not to love about...


Photo: A National Acrobat/Flickr

Garage Door Replacement Cost

Posted by Philip Schmidt | Feb 14, 2014

Shortly after I bought my 1950s house a few years ago, I released the garage door opener from the door, for a reason I can't remember. What I do remember was the heavy wood door sliding...


Photo: Aleksey Gnilenkov/Flickr

Does Orange Oil Work for Termites?

Posted by Philip Schmidt | Feb 10, 2014

Yes, orange oil kills termites. Few pest control experts would dispute this basic claim. But ask a number of them the more loaded question, Does orange oil really work for termites?...


Photo: Randall Degges/Flickr

Estimating Concrete Walkway Cost

Posted by Philip Schmidt | Feb 06, 2014

The same characteristics that make concrete an ideal material for public curbs and sidewalks also apply to your own walkway: It's cheap, it goes down fast and it pretty much lasts...


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Can You Lay New Roof Shingles Over Old?

Posted by Philip Schmidt | Jan 23, 2014

The answer is yes, you can lay new roof shingles over old ones. Now that we've taken care of the primary question at hand, we'll consider a couple of reasons why you might want to...


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Convert Flat Roof to Pitched

Posted by Philip Schmidt | Jan 16, 2014

There are many good reasons to covert a flat roof to a pitched, or sloped, roof. A pitched roof can add curb appeal and storage or even living space, it can reduce maintenance (in...