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Find out how to improve the look and function of your kitchen with these inexpensive, do-it-yourself home improvement projects that you can tackle in a weekend.

Tile Backsplash Installation

The mosaic tile we used—Jeffrey Court Pillar Mini Brick glass and slate mosaic wall tile (available at The Home Depot)—comes in sheets with the individual tiles held together by a mesh backing.

A tile backsplash can be installed on drywall without the need for cement backer board. Start by cleaning the wall of any grease or grime, and cover the countertop with plastic. Use a notched trowel to apply thin-set tile adhesive to the wall.

Setting mosaic tile backsplash in thin-set adhesive.
Setting mosaic tile backsplash in thin-set adhesive.

To mark the location of electrical outlets on the tile, rub lipstick on the outlet, hold the tile in position on the wall, and press against the outlet to transfer the location to the tile. To cut tile to size, use either a motorized wet saw, table saw equipped with a special tile cutting blade, or a small circular trim saw.

After the thin-set adhesive is dry, use a slotted screwdriver to remove any excess adhesive between the tiles. Wet the tile down with a sponge before applying grout to the tile with a rubber float. Use a sponge and plenty of clean water to wipe the excess grout off the tile.

To find out more watch our videos on:

Range Hoods

Dedicated range hoods—such as those from Broan—do a better job of venting your kitchen than over the range microwaves, since they extend further out over the stove.

Kitchen range hood.
Kitchen range hood.

When buying a range hood, choose a model with a low sones number, to keep the noise from the fan to a minimum, and a fan rated to move enough cubic feet per minute (CFM) of air to exchange the air in the kitchen at least 15 times per hour.

To find out more, check out:

Water filtration faucet.
Water filtration faucet.

Water Filtration System

Installing a water filtration system next to the kitchen sink is a convenient way to remove unwanted chemicals, such as lead and pesticides, from the water you use for drinking and cooking.

Sink mounted water filtration systems—such as those made by Filtrete—with the filter mounted under the kitchen sink are convenient to use and easy to change the filter.

To find out more, read our article about the various types of Water Filters for Your Home.

Decorative Cabinet Display Shelf

To add a decorative touch to our kitchen update project, we routed a cove in the edge of a 1” x 6” board, then cut it to fit between the cabinets over the sink. Pilot holes were drilled in the cabinets to prevent splitting before the shelf was screwed in place.

DIY decorative cabinet shelf.
DIY decorative cabinet shelf.

Hiding Cabinet Scratches

To hide unsightly scratches on stained wood cabinets or furniture:

  • Apply matching stain to the scratch.
  • Rub a colored wax furniture pencil on the scratch.
  • Apply a touch up marker to the scratch.
  • Rub the meat from a walnut on the scratch.

To find out more, check out:

Kitchen Cabinet Shelf Liner

To keep the inside of your kitchen cabinets clean, cut Easy Liner shelf liner to fit each shelf. Easy Liner protects cabinets from spills and can be cleaned by washing it in a clothes washer.

Other Tips from This Episode

Putting duvet cover on comforter.

Simple Solutions with Joe Truini:
Comforter Cover Tip

To put a duvet cover on a comforter, turn the cover inside out and lay it on the bed with the open end at the foot. Spread the comforter out on top of the cover. Start at the head of the bed and roll the comforter and cover up together. Take the open end of the cover and turn it inside out over the comforter. (Watch Video)

Moen MotionSense Kitchen Faucet

Best New Products with Jodi Marks:
Moen MotionSense Kitchen Faucet

To turn the Moen MotionSense faucet on and off, simply wave your hand over the top of the faucet or put your hands or a pot under it. It also comes with an easily retractable, three function, pullout wand. The Moen MotionSense faucet is available at The Home Depot in several finishes. (Watch Video)

Stainless steel cleaning products on grill.

Ask Danny Lipford:
Cleaning Stainless Steel

A clean cloth dipped in warm water can be used to clean stainless steel appliances. For tougher cleaning jobs, add a little dishwashing liquid to the water. Glass cleaner is great for removing fingerprints. To add shine apply olive or baby oil to a clean, dry cloth and rub it over the surface. (Watch Video)

Editorial Contributors
Danny Lipford

Danny Lipford


Danny Lipford is a home improvement expert and television personality who started his remodeling business, Lipford Construction, at the age of 21 in Mobile, Alabama. He gained national recognition as the host of the nationally syndicated television show, Today's Homeowner with Danny Lipford, which started as a small cable show in Mobile. Danny's expertise in home improvement has also led him to be a contributor to popular magazines and websites and the go-to source for advice on everything related to the home. He has made over 200 national television appearances and served as the home improvement expert for CBS's The Early Show and The Weather Channel for over a decade. Danny is also the founder of 3 Echoes Content Studio,, and Checking In With Chelsea, a décor and lifestyle blog.

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