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Hardware Tip of the Week: Patching Plastic Laminate and Rain Gutter Tune-Up

Sponsored by:
ISLAND TRUE VALUE TACKLE & HARDWARE
801 N. Lake Park Blvd.   Carolina Beach, NC  28428 Phone: (910) 458-3049  
Fax: (910) 458-0988
www.islandtacklehardware.com

Formica is a brand name for a generic solid-surface material called plastic laminate. It’s used for countertops, cabinets and furniture. If you have a laminate surface somewhere in you home, chances are someday you will have to deal with a seam that needs filling or a small chip that needs to be hidden. This used to mean living with the ugliness, or replacing the countertop. That’s because paint cannot be used to repair plastic laminate. It won’t stick.
Look for a product called Seamfil. Seamfil is a resin-based paint-putty that can be purchased in a color that precisely matches your plastic-laminate surface.
All you have to know is the brand and color number of the laminate to be repaired. Out of the tube, onto a polished putty knife and into the chip -- patch made -- and the ugly is all gone.
It’s a good day for fixing-up your rain gutters (with quick-fix tips from the Carey Brothers). Gutters leak? Sag? All clogged up? Runneth over like the proverbial “cup”? To find sagging low spots pour water in the high end and gently bend metal brackets up with pliers where water accumulates. Then patch leaky joints with silicone caulk or gutter sealant. To fix a leaky steel gutter apply a liberal coat of roofing cement, add a layer of heavy-duty aluminum foil followed by more cement, more foil and a third coat of roofing cement. When clearing gutters don’t mess up siding by dumping debris overboard. Tie a long rope onto a bucket instead and lower it to the ground where a helper can dump it or you can climb down safely using both hands. Patch up the gutters and raindrops won’t be falling on your head anymore.

Bonus Tips:

Clean Grease Stains:
Do your driveway and garage floor look like an ad for grease?
If so, it’s time for one of the True Value formulas for cleaning greasy stuff. First, grab some cat litter and spread it around on the grease. Then grind it in real good, walking and twisting around on it. Sweep it up, and open a cola beverage. Spread the drink around on the floor. Wet the grease stains thoroughly. Work it in with a stiff broom, but don’t let it dry. Once the cola quits fizzing, rinse it with water, then whiten up the remaining gray stain with a solution of 1 cup of liquid chlorine bleach and 1 cup of powdered laundry detergent in 1 gallon of very hot water.

Carpet Stain Remover:
New carpeting looks warm and inviting for a week or so, then kids, company, dogs, TV dinners and things like red wine take their toll. New carpet certainly can brighten a home. It looks warm and inviting for a week or two, then kids, company, dogs, TV dinners and things like red wine take their toll. Soon your new carpet looks like a military drop zone.
Don’t fret, here are a few carpet-cleaning tips. For chewing gum, put ice cubes in a plastic bag and freeze the gum in the carpet. When it’s hard, scrape it with a butter knife. For greasy stuff like lipstick, blot up the excess, then use dry-cleaning fluid. For pet stains, blot any excess with paper towels, and then use a mixture of laundry detergent, ammonia and white vinegar. For shoe polish and ink stains, dab with paint thinner.
For fruit juice and soft drink spills, mix 1 teaspoon of both laundry detergent and white vinegar in 1 quart of warm water, and sponge well. For burns, trim off fibers, and, if needed, glue in some extras from the edges.
And that’s the tip of the week from Island True Value Tackle and Hardware.