Today’s Homeowner Radio Show for May 7, 2016

Hour 1

Hour 2

Here are some of the highlights from the May 7, 2016, Today’s Homeowner with Danny Lipford radio show.

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Joe in NY
Several years ago I laid 1300sqft of ceramic tile in my home. At the same time I purchased an additional 12 boxes for any future remodel or damages. We remodeled our kitchen and when filling in the holes with the same tiles I noticed the color on the replacement tiles are several shades darker than the ones already there. They were all purchased the same day same place off the same pallet. Is there anything I can do short of tearing the entire floor up and putting down all new tile?

Adalberto in TX
How can I remove old dried exterior latex paint from paint brushes?

C.F. in AL
What is the most effective method for killing fire ants? I’m concerned to aggravate their nest until I know what to do.

Molly in KS
When we bought our home there was a wooden storage shed on concrete in the backyard. We didn’t need it so we gave it to a friend. When we moved it we found out that the concrete was never smoothed out where the shed was. It’s so rough it’s hard to walk on with bare feet and doesn’t look very good. No one seems to know of any way to fix it.

Sandra in VA
I purchased Rustoleum countertop paint. On the can it does not say to sand the surface before applying. Do I need to sand first?

Ruth in IL
My yard and our pond dam is so badly over ran with moles and groundhogs, and we have a wedding in the yard Oct the 1st of 2016, I need help BAD, we’ve tried everything!

Chris in OH
I am trying to fix drywall scratches in drywall before painting. Also, how do you fix where the paper on the drywall is torn off?

How can I stop a rocking chair from walking across a hardwood floor?

Stanley in AL
On one your shows you mentioned a place that sells used but good kitchen cabinets. But I didn’t catch the name. Could you tell me who they are? I need some to put in a workshop in a barn.

Pat in NH
How can I clean dried polyurethane off windows? I don’t want to scratch them.

Schyla in GA
My husband and I purchased our first home in 2003. The home was built in 1995. I have a question, our deck is sinking. Under the desk is dirt where the cats have dug holes in the dirt and rain has wash away from under the deck. What would you recommend for this solution?

Thomas in AL
What would be an acceptable level of humidity in my home?

Peter in NY
When I first turn the A/C on at the beginning of the season there is a smell of mold or mildew. Is it worth getting it cleaned? Can I do it myself? Or should I buy a new one. The one I have now is 20 yrs old.

Melody in GA
The side entry door to my house does not have any protection from rain.This causes water to enter house and also rot the lower portion of door jam. Can I remove and replace a portion of jam? How can I stop this problem? Would a storm door help?The roof line is high so the door is totally exposed.

Sheryl in MO
I am repainting a kitchen for a friend. Her cabinets are very plain and very old–plywood doors. I am putting moulding on fronts to dress them up. Question: what paint finish would you suggest? Will be Gray lowers and white or off white uppers.

Larry in PA
I’ve been told that I will not be able to drain my electric water heater for winter because the element must remain in water. Was I misinformed?

Bob in MI
I have a 25 yr. old house with a 50″ tall crawlspace. The crawlspace has a 4″ concrete floor with no vapor barrier under it. There is water seepage around the foundations edge only in the spring. Can I put plastic film on the concrete without moisture forming between concrete and plastic film?

Chris in TX
I have 2 mature trees 22′ apart. What’s the best way to construct a swing using both trees?

Tim in AR
What is the ratio of water to vinegar when prepping galvanized metal to be painted?

Here’s a FANTASTIC tip from a listener on how to control carpenter bees:

Ralph in CA writes:
I’ve read that carpenter bees do not like hard woods, and painted surfaces.
The experts say their favorite woods are: redwood, cedar, white pine, and southern yellow pine. The females chew perfectly round holes into the wood, down for about an inch and then drill horizontally along the grain for about 4-6 inches. They deposit their eggs in chambers they create in these tunnels. My theory: Purchase bare, untreated and unpainted boards at least 2×4 inches in dimension. Leave them outside to weather and make them more attractive to the females who do all the tunneling. Around the first of March, place these boards strategically around your property. Hang a sign on them, “Carpenter Bees Welcome. Rent Free.” At the end of the summer, I’m thinking these boards will have a number of carpenter bee holes in them, with the baby bees who will emerge next March. At some point before the end of the year, take these boards some distance into the woods and leave them there. (I hate to kill critters.) Since experts say they hatched bees tend to return to their homes, they will now come back to the same holes from which they emerged, you’ve exported your problem. Make sure you place new boards on your property for the next generation of carpenter bees. That’s my theory and I’m sticking with it.


  1. I enjoyed our conversation on 5/6/16 regarding carpenter bees and really enjoyed my national radio debut on 5/7/16!
    It was a pleasure to share Ralph’s theory.


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