Smart ideas for those DIY moments that’ll save time and hassle, making life just that much easier…
1 Avoid sticky situations
If the lid of your glue won’t undo because it’s stuck to itself, try keeping a pot of Vaseline in the same place as you keep the glue. When you use the glue, get into the habit of dabbing a little Vaseline on to the threads before you close it, and it will open easily next time.
2 Protect your thumbs
If you’re hammering in a nail and fear for your thumbs, stick the nail through one end of a folded sheet of stiff paper then hold the other end as you hammer. Just before the nail is fully hammered in, tear the paper away. Or use tweezers or long-nose pliers to hold the nail.
3 Show screws who’s the boss
If you are screwing a screw into a tight spot, keep it in place by magnetising your screwdriver. Do this by dragging its blade over a magnet (is there one on your fridge door?) several times in one direction. Keep the screwdriver away from other metal objects and it should hold its charge for a week.
4 Banish plaster dust
If you are drilling into a ceiling, first drill through the centre of a plastic coffee jar lid, leaving the lid on the drill bit. Then, as you drill, hold the lid steady and it will collect the dust. Clear lids are ideal so you can see the drill bit, too. For walls, tape an open paper bag or coffee filter under the hole.
5 Tame tricky ladders
Make sure your stepladder has skid-free traction on smooth surfaces by standing the feet in an old pair of children’s Wellington boots.
Words Victoria Young