AP NEWS

Use Leak Alert so you don’t get caught with wet feet

March 11, 2019

Is your water heater upstairs in the attic? Sounds like a good place, right? Until it fails and you step out of the bed one morning and the carpet goes squish.

I don’t know about you, but wet carpet under my toes is not a comforting feeling. But when the hot water heater is in the attic, how in the world are you supposed to know it’s getting ready to bite the dust and spill gallons and gallons of water down on floors below? It’s not that it sends you a text message! No, but you can get an alarm.

Zircon makes Leak Alert which is a water detector that will send out a piercing 85 decibel alarm when it gets wet. I know what you are going to say, “Well if it alarms, it’s too late.” No! You know why?

Because all failures — whether it’s a hot water heater, toilet, dishwasher, plumbing under the sink — start out as a little leak, which always goes undetected until it’s a full-blown gusher. And then, it’s too late. But if you have a Leak Alert under your hot water heater, sink and toilet, it sends out a SOS message the minute water touches it, warning for 72 hours. It looks like a garage door opener with metal sensors that run down the side. When those get wet, you will know it! And guess what, it floats!

I was closing on my house, and I was the only one left living there. The extra bathrooms were not ever used, so I never noticed that small leak under the toilet. Then one morning my neighbor called me to tell me that water was pouring out of my second story eves. That small toilet flooded all of the upstairs and stalled my closing for another two weeks while I replaced carpets and painted. Place Leak Alert under fixtures that you don’t use often so you don’t get caught with wet feet!

Now to the email …

Question: We have adhesive strips in the bottom of the tub and over the years they have started wearing off. So I just pulled them off and was left with a sticky adhesive that will not budge. The tub is porcelain and I am wondering what will get it clean but not damage the tub surface.

Answer: Since you have removed the strips all you need to do is remove the adhesive with Lift Off Adhesive Remover. They make several formulas of Lift Off and one is tape, label and adhesive remover. It has a low VOC formula that has very little odor. I like it because it breaks the bond between the adhesive and the surface and gives you a clean finish. It also removes labels, stickers, gum, wax and glue from hard surfaces.

Question: I have a door that constantly closes when I want it to stay open. Is there anything I can do beside put one of those door stops on the floor. Those are not very attractive.

Answer: Take the middle door pin out of the hinge and rough it up using pliers. Put the pin back in place. The added friction on the pin will be enough to keep the door open right where you want it.

Question: We have a varnished front door and the finish is dull. What do I have to do to refinish the door? Do you have to sand down to the wood before you apply a new varnish?

Answer: Since the finish on the door is intact, just use Sun Shield. Apply a small amount on a clean soft cloth and then wipe down the door. If it is really dry, apply a second coat. It’s just that simple, and the door will look beautiful!

Question: I have padlocks on my fence and since they are outside they get rusty and hard to open. I am buying new padlocks and I’m wondering if there is anything I can use as a preventive, so these padlocks last a little longer.

Answer: Just spray the new locks with Tri Flow. This spray comes with a little straw so you can get down inside where your key goes. It will keep it oiled and lubricated.

If you cannot find the products mentioned here locally, you can find them at www.happyhandyman.com . Click on Shop Johnnie’s Favorites, or call the store at 210-341-1573. Email Trudy Chuoke Lesage at happyhandy man2@yahoo.com. Mail can be sent to Johnnie Chuoke’s Home and Hardware, 2361 NW Military, San Antonio, TX 78231.