When the water from the faucet in our upstairs bathroom went from flowing freely to flowing slowly, at first it was merely an annoyance. But when it slowed so much that it could barely rinse a toothbrush, I got worried. My mind filled with fears of having to replace every last bit of plumbing in our house. I envisioned our plumber’s kids graduating from college courtesy of our life savings.
Such are the mad thoughts to one who is home maintenance challenged. I’m so unhandy that when Jude and I got married, she owned more tools than I did.
But then a few semi-rational thoughts made their way into my mind. None of the other faucets were running slowly, so it couldn’t be a whole-house plumbing problem, right?
After ruling out the possibility that one of our kids tampered with the knobs underneath the sink, I turned to the Internet. Still fearing what I might discover, I forced my trembling fingers to type, “fixing one slow faucet.” With several results mentioning “aerator,” a term that I thought only applied to poking holes in your yard for reasons that are still a mystery to me, I discovered that unscrewing the tip of the faucet and soaking the parts in vinegar may solve the problem. And to my amazement, it did!
At first, I felt like the worst little leaguer on the team who sticks his glove in the air out of self-defense and miraculously catches the game-winning fly ball.
But then I felt proud of myself for figuring out the problem and saving the $125 our plumber would have charged. Now I’m motivated to learn how to do more around the house myself, and I’m intent on teaching our kids how to fix stuff too.
Learning to Do Your Own Home Repairs
But you can just type questions into the Internet as well, which is what I did to fix our faucet.
Teaching Your Kids About DIY Projects
In order to help our kids grow up to be handy around the house, I’m going to involve them in the projects I’m learning how to do. And I’m planning to take them to some free how-to workshops offered by the two leading DIY stores.
Home Depot’s Kids Workshops are for kids age 5-12 and are offered on the first Saturday of each month.
Lowe’s Build and Grow clinics are for first to fifth graders and are offered every other Saturday.
What advice do you have about becoming handier around the house?
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