Ronnie the Handyman

Ronnie the Handyman

Don't let things that sag get ya down!

by Jenn Barber on 08/02/11

Once upon a time there was a door and it was a happy door. Then one day it rained and the door became heavy with moisture and began to rub against the frame a bit... no big deal, right?  Just lift a little on the knob, no problem. Then the family comes over and the kids (or adults) can't help themselves but to lean (or swing) on that door (don't judge me... it looked fun) and just like that you  have a full on sagging door. Don't worry, friends, the solution could be a simple as driving longer screws into the jamb hinges so the door is anchored to the stud behind the jamb as well.

Here's what ya need;

  1. Three inch screws
  2. A screwgun (or a drill with a flathead or phillipshead bit)

Here's what ya do;

  1. Open the door and face the jamb, that's where the hinges are attached to the door. (Make sure the hinges are straight and not bent, as that could be the problem)
  2. Remove all but the bottom screw on each hinge ( if your door has  three hinges, you only need to do the top two)
  3. Doing the top hinge first, place the tip of your first three inch screw in the existing uppermost hole and hold it in place with the bit on your screw gun
  4. Now, take the door handle and pull up on the door as far as it will go
  5. Then drive the screw you are holding in place.
  6. Repeat this process for the remaining holes in the hinges.

Hooray! Now open and close your door with joy!

Licensed contractors build complacency!

by Jenn Barber on 08/02/11

Here at Ronnies, we take pride in a job well done and guarantee all of our work. As Ronnie says, "Using a licensed contractor doesn't guarantee good work, but we do." For that reason, we choose not to be a licensed contractor.

According to The Arizona Republic, 13,000 Arizonans filed claims against licensed contractors with the Registrar of Contractors (ROC) last year.             

Arizona has more contractors than it used to. As more companies lay off employees, those employees go out on their own, as it is very simple to get a contractor's license, a test and a fee in most cases. Not all of them have the experience to see a job through to a successful finish.  Someone might start a project at your house and abandon it in the middle—and have no money to repay your deposit.               

The most common homeowner complaints are failure to complete the work, failure to start the work or work that doesn't meet industry standards.            

If you live in a single-family home and have lost money to a contractor for any of those reasons, your first step is to ask the contractor to make it right.            

If that doesn't work, you can ask the ROC to intervene. After you file a written complaint, the ROC might inspect your property and order the contractor to take a specific action to solve the problem. If the contractor can't or won't comply, the ROC might suspend or revoke the contractor's license. If it does, you may be able to apply for up to $30,000 from the ROC's Recovery Fund. You'll have to fill out lots of forms (find them at www.azroc.gov) and meet numerous qualifications, which require you to describe your "injury"; file your complaint within two years of the issue; and get bids for finishing the work or repairing contractor caused problems.

You're not guaranteed any money, of course, and the amount you get depends on how many other homeowners have asked for funds because of the same contractor; the ROC will pay a maximum of $200,000 per contractor and if you think that's interesting, read this!

Which means, licensed contractors protect themselves… not you. So what should you do? Hire someone you trust! 

Stop varmits in their tracks!!

by Jenn Barber on 08/02/11

Those cute, fuzzy, little critters lose their charm when they invade your garden and leave behind a trail of destruction and mutilated vegetables. We have all had that primal urge to blow them to smithereens! But new ones just replace the old when there is a food source. There has to be a more convincing, lasting way to dismiss these pests... well read on, friends!

First order of business, know your enemy. Varmints don't like loud noises, flashing lights, or food they can't digest. 

  • Place empty milk jugs or tin cans upside down over a fence post or stake (metal is the noisiest) and when the wind blows it will scare them.
  • Take strips of aluminum foil and old cd's and hang them from trees and fencing.
  • For wire mesh or chicken wire to be most effective, dig a trench around your garden and bury the barrier, so 12 inches is underground and about 36 inches is above ground.
  • Raise your garden bed and place a layer of chicken wire or wire mesh 12 to 14 inches deep, so nothing can burrow in.
  • Mix together cayenne pepper, garlic, black pepper, Tabasco sauce, etc. thin enough to use in a spray bottle and spray to your heart's content, this will not harm your plants, just be sure to wash them very well before you eat them.
  • In the event rodents are setting up shop in or around your garden, unwrap a stick of gum and drop it in their borough, they can't digest it and will seek food elsewhere.
  • Grow castor beans.
  • Cut rubber hose into sections about 18 to 24 inches long and scatter in your garden, because just like the rest of us, birds and rodents don't want to be bit by a snake!

Good luck folks and stay tuned!

Dear John, I cherish our time together but why must you waste so much water?!

by Jenn Barber on 08/02/11

Oh, if only writing a letter to the toilet would inspire it to stop leaking... if wishes were fishes, right?

Here is a detailed, easy to follow guide on how to replace your toilet flapper and save yourself a few bucks on the water bill. And remember, no matter what the package says, a flapper should be replaced about once a year.

  1. Close the water supply to your toilet. This is usually behind the bowl, below the tank. If there's no valve or the valve is stuck, turn off the water to the house.
  2. Flush the water in the tank and note the length of the chain from the flush handle to the flapper. This will save time when installing the new flapper.
  3. If the flapper is connected by a circular ring around the tube, remove the refill tube from the overflow tube. (If not, skip this step)
  4. Remove the chain from the flush lever, then remove the old flapper by sliding it up and off of the overflow tube. Or, unhook the flapper ears from the overflow tube. For new plastic flush valves, you may have to bend the flapper ears out and off the pins on the flush valve.
  5. Write down the toilet manufacturer and the model number, if you know it. The manufacturer's name is often stamped on the outside of the bowl near the seat hinges and the model number is normally on the inside at the back of the tank.
  6. Buy a new flapper. We here at Ronnie's are big fans of Ace hardware... just sayin'... Be prepared to pay $2 - $10 for the right flapper. You may also need a beaded metal flapper chain replacement.
  7. Install the new flapper by sliding it down and over the overflow tube until the ring touches the bottom of the tank, with the flapper bulb centered on the valve opening.
  8. Ronnie also says it's a good idea to smear some vaseline around the edge of the flapper to ensure a good seal.
  9. Good job, you did it! (If you are having any trouble give us a call at (520) 297-8724. We are happy to help!)