Archive for May, 2015|Monthly archive page

Cracking Plaster Ceilings / Bring Back a Shine to Marble / The Handy Camel Bag Clip

In Uncategorized on May 5, 2015 at 11:53 am


I have plaster ceilings in my house and some of them are cracking. Can anything be done to fix this and make them look nice once again?


I have inspected many homes over the years that have plaster ceilings that were becoming loose and cracking. Good news is there is an easy way to fix this sad situation without redoing the entire ceiling too.

You can fix your plaster ceilings with a “plastic washer”. This allows you to screw the loose or cracked plaster (as long as it’s not crumbling) back onto the wood lath behind it. Place a washer and drywall screw every two to four square feet, starting at the outer edge of the loose area and working to the center. Once the plaster is firmly in place, hide the washers under several coats of drywall joint compound and then paint. You can buy plastic washers from Charles Street Supply Company by calling 800-382-4360 or visit their website www.charlesstsupply.com.

If your entire ceiling is loose, or if there are a lot of soft spots, you’d be better off either replacing or covering the ceiling with 5/8-inch drywall. If you do this yourself, find out first if your joists will carry the extra weight. Consult an experienced contractor or structural engineer for this. Be sure that the drywall screws are long enough to penetrate the joists. Finally, move or extend the electrical boxes to they’re flush with the new face of the drywall.


What is the best way to clean and bring back the shine to marble tile? I have used cleaners that didn’t work Do you know of anything?


Marble is extremely porous (read that as stains easily). Most stains can be removed by applying a poultice. The type of stain will determine what cleaners or solvents you should use in your poultice.

To make a poultice, use a marble cleaner along with powdered limestone (which is also referred to as whiting). Mix enough of each to cover the stained areas. Do not add too much water. Add only enough water to hold the mixture together. Press the poultice onto the stain and cover with plastic wrap. The plastic helps keep the poultice from drying out while the stain is absorbed into the whiting.

Organic stains can be removed using hydrogen peroxide mixed with a couple drops of ammonia along with the whiting.

If you want to hire a professional to come out, check out MarbleLife of Southeastern Michigan. They work with marble, granite, terrazzo, limestone and travertine. The company deals with stone that has lost its gloss, is worn, damaged, lost its gloss or just plain dirty. They also seal the surface to reduce future problems. Check them out at marblelifeproducts.com or call 1-866-653-9737 to locate the nearest dealer for help.

The Handy Camel Bag Clip

I recently checked out a new product called the Handy Camel Bag Clip. This clip reminds me of a huge chip bag clip, except there are a few differences. First, this bag clip can carry and seal bags up to forty pounds. In lieu of just squeezing it on a bag like a chip clip, it easily locks on and securely holds and seals the bag. It has a convenient handle, which enables the user to lift, drag or pour the contents easily.

Why do you need the Handy Camel Bag Clip? You don’t, but it is a useful product for carrying large bags such as dog or bird food, charcoal, potting soil, driveway de-icer, grass seed or fertilizer, etc.

I have several large bags of mortar and grout that I wanted to save and the Handy Camel Bag Clip was perfect for storing them and helped kept the contents from deteriorating as well.

While the Handy Camel Bag Clip may not be a necessity, it does a great job of securing large bags so they won’t spill or keeps them tightly closed from curious pets, pests and insects.

The clip is a well-designed, hardened plastic and can be reused endlessly. It can be purchased online for $14.95 plus $8.95 for shipping and handling. For further information check it out on their website at www.thehandycamel.com.


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