Today’s Homeowner Radio Show | April 16, 2022

This week, what to ask when hiring a house painter and what’s worm grunting? (Split images: MPKphoto/Getty Images Signature, danienel/Getty Images)

In this week’s radio show — what to ask when hiring a house painter, how to troubleshoot a leaky shower, and what’s worm grunting?

Hiring a house painter can be a daunting task, but if you know what to ask, it will be easier. (Andy Dean Photography)

What to Ask When Hiring a House Painter

When painting your home’s exterior, the hardest decision is choosing what paint color. After that, the next difficult thing is to find a reliable and trustworthy contractor to do the job right. 

First, ask your friends and neighbors. Take a look at their home, and see if you like the results.

Next, find some paint-only stores where the pros buy their materials. Call them and tell them what you’re looking for, and they should be able to recommend someone.

Then, get everything in writing. Make sure they detail for you what they will do, like washing the surface, caulking, how many coats of paint, and what brand of paint they will use.

The paint brand is important because there’s a big fluctuation in paint costs. Go the middle of the road when it comes to paint pricing — don’t get the cheapest and don’t get the most expensive. 

Don’t be afraid to ask questions. You won’t hurt anyone’s feelings. Make sure they have insurance. You don’t want to be stuck paying medical bills if a painter falls off your roof.

If someone is trying to put too much pressure on you, turn away. If they’re offering a special price or say they have leftover paint to use, those are red flags.

Get an estimated work schedule with a start and finish date, and be sure you can get in contact with them easily.

Never pay 100 percent up front, because what’s the incentive to come back? Usually, you pay a third up front, a third midway, and the last third when the job is complete. 

Read more about what to do when hiring a painter.

Skip to [45:35] for the full segment on the Today’s Homeowner Radio Show.

Stop shower leaks in a second-story bathroom fast to save the living area below it. (Andrei310/Getty Images)

Fixing Shower Leaks

A leaky shower on a second story means trouble for the living space below it. Do you have to remove the tile, or can it be re-grouted and resealed? 

Unfortunately, 90 percent of the time you have to take out the tile. Many times, the leak is coming from a microscopic crack from where something has settled, especially on the second floor. 

Before you take out the tile, try resealing the shower. Clean the tile thoroughly, and seal around the drain.

Next, seal the grout along the floor and about six to eight inches up the sidewall.

Doing this might solve the problem, but if the leak continues, you’ll have to remove the tile and find that crack.

Skip to [43:02] for the full segment on the Today’s Homeowner Radio Show.

Worm grunting is a neat technique to drive earthworms to the soil’s surface.

Worm Grunting

This week, I’m hanging out with the grandchildren to do some worm grunting. 

The National Wildlife Federation describes the practice as driving a stake into the ground, then rubbing the stake with a long piece of steel in order to produce a sound that drives earthworms to the surface, where they could be collected for bait.

According to Modern Farmer, worm grunting works because the vibrations created by the metal and wood sound, to worms, like the sounds of a hungry mole.

The practice of worm grunting dates back at least 100 years and reached its peak in the 1960s in Sopchoppy, Fla., Vanderbilt University reports. This was when hundreds of worm grunters tramped the Apalachicola National Forest, harvesting millions of worms to sell to sports fishermen. 

I hope we have the same luck as those worm grunters past so we will have a happy fishing trip soon!

Skip to [1:09:36] for the full segment on the Today’s Homeowner Radio Show.

Also on this episode:

  • Fixing Front Porch Cracks
  • Changing Brick Color
  • Finding the Cause of a Window Leak
  • Painting a Bath Tub
  • Painting Dark Wood Paneling
  • Fixing a Shower Leak
  • What to Ask When Contracting a House Painter
  • Installing a Rain Diverter
  • Adjusting a Sprinkler Head

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In The Aisles of Home Depot

With a little creativity, DIY projects can be a great way to refresh your home and be budget-friendly.

The Home Depot’s free, interactive livestream workshops with expert associates can help you tackle your DIY projects, teach you how to care for different areas of your home and more.

A favorite spring project is How to Build a Greenhouse Project Guide. DIY greenhouses allow you to customize and form-fit them to your individual needs, and The Home Depot’s guide can help you determine which materials would be best suited for you.

This is one of more than 6,000 DIY projects available on  The Home Depot website.

If you’re not looking for a long-term DIY project, start small with spring cleaning. It’s a great way refresh without tackling too large of a project. The Home Depot has everything you need from start to finish — including cleaning supplies, paint and new furniture pieces to brighten up any space. Check out our Spring Cleaning Checklist on to help guide you this season.

Whether you’re in need of home maintenance or in the process of remodeling your home, you can save time and money when you hire The Home Depot’s certified Home Services professionals. The Home Depot has everything you need for your installation, repair and design needs, offering over 400 services.

Other Products and Links Mentioned

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Further Reading

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