Streams

The Gurus of How-To Help You Keep Your Home Ship Shape

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Our gurus of how-to, Al Ubell and Larry Ubell, give advice on home repair issues--from dripping sinks to leaking roofs and more.

Call 212-433-9692 with your questions or leave them in the comments below!

Guests:

Alvin Ubell and Larry Ubell

Comments [25]

estelle zagaria from deer park

I live in Suffolk county and my basement walls are weeping water from the rain we just experienced. Is there any way to waterproof the basement without digging out the foundation from the outside?

Aug. 13 2014 02:03 PM
kathryn kirk from brooklyn, ny

Hello,

I have a brownstone in Brooklyn and am thinking of digging out the basement(about a foot?)to get more height down there.

The basement is now damp, the floor is concrete with dirt caked on it.

I'm thinking i might be able to do something about the moisture issue at the same time.

look forward to hearing from you.

Best,
Kathryn

Aug. 13 2014 02:00 PM
estelle zagaria from deer park

I live in Suffolk county and my basement walls are weeping water from the rain we just experienced. Is there any way to waterproof the basement without digging out the foundation from the outside?

Aug. 13 2014 01:58 PM
Thomas from New Jersey

I think that scale is referred to a Three Beam Balance.

Aug. 13 2014 01:52 PM
manish from new rochelle

Is the device called a platform scale

Aug. 13 2014 01:52 PM
David from Nassau

The device is probably called a "steelyard".

Aug. 13 2014 01:51 PM
John from Queens

HELP! We recently viewed a rental apt and noticed that the metal radiator covers were very grubby and we wondered if there had been any radiator leakage. The realtor and landlord assured us that there had been no leaks. We have just moved in and while cleaning, took off the metal radiator covers in both the bedroom and living room to discover the floorboards and lower window frame around the radiator are warped as a result of a radiator leak going untreated. We have told landlord and he is sending his handy man - who has been treating the leaks and other apartment issues for years with woodfill, cocking and paint. Do we have a right to tell the landlord how we want the issue fixed???

Aug. 13 2014 01:51 PM
milna from metro NY

for the question , is the slider called mass or masse?

Aug. 13 2014 01:50 PM
Kathleen

I just had my side deck replaced. It looks great -- but the beams rest on the posts, and are nailed in by 4 nails driven at an angle. My old deck had metal braces that screwed into both the post and the beams.

My contractor says the metal braces are not needed. Is this true? It just seems like a great deal of weight depending on 4 nails per post...

Thank you, love the show, Mr Lopate and the Gurus!!

Aug. 13 2014 01:49 PM
Penelope from Park slope brooklyn


When we have a heavy rain here in Brooklyn, our brownstone yard often floods into the basement.

(we had to redirected thour roof rain water from the plumbing system into the yard because it used to back up from the street sewers during heavy rain into the basement shower and toilet)

So we are thinking now of creating a dry well in the back yard - d you think this is a good idea? any suggestions for how to do this? or any alternatives?

Aug. 13 2014 01:49 PM
Ned W from Prospect Lefferts

Pendulum?

Aug. 13 2014 01:47 PM
Don from east village

quiz answer : "Weights & Measures"

Aug. 13 2014 01:47 PM
Manish from new rochelle

Is it called a balance?

Aug. 13 2014 01:47 PM
Ned W from Prospect Lefferts

Pendulum?

Aug. 13 2014 01:47 PM
gregb

I think it is called a "balance pan"

Aug. 13 2014 01:45 PM
Sally

Counter-weight

Aug. 13 2014 01:44 PM
Francesca from Montclair, NJ

Hello. We are thinking of replacing an old wooden vanity, and we would like to reuse the original ceramic sink that seems to be very firmly glued on. How can we remove the sink in one piece to reuse it? We still miss our super, even though we moved from NYC 23 years ago. We can use all of the help we can get - thanks!

Aug. 13 2014 01:42 PM
Jack from Manhattan

Beam Scale. Answer to quiz question. (Because I'm too lazy to call.)

I loved Leonard. Woman: "I hear the water 'tapping.'" Leonard: "you mean dripping." [you fool]

Aug. 13 2014 01:42 PM
Jack from Manhattan

Beam Scale. Answer to quiz question. (Because I'm too lazy to call.)

I loved Leonard. Woman: "I hear the water 'tapping.'" Leonard: "you mean dripping." [you fool]

Aug. 13 2014 01:41 PM
Paul from UWS

Hello Gurus
Speaking of leaks and drips...
Out upstairs neighbors have two old air conditioners placed outside winds above our small terrace. Not only are they very loud, they drip over our door to the patio. Is the effluent toxic or unhealthy or legal?Is therer a reliable way to prevent or drain this> Is there a limit on noise as well?
Thanks
We live in a co -op by and by.

Aug. 13 2014 01:33 PM
Brian from Manhattan

I am purchasing a two-story single-family home in New Jersey. The home inspector noted that the attic has only a few soffit vents and recommended more ventialtion be installed. He suggested additional soffit vents, a ridge vent, and gable end vents noting that you can't really over do it. What's a reasonable plan?

Aug. 13 2014 01:06 PM
Estelle from Brooklyn

I have a house built 1899. On each side of the porch steps is a structure about 10' x 3' x 1'. There's a banister attached to one of them. I've always wanted to know what they are called.

Aug. 13 2014 01:06 PM
Kristen from Brooklyn

My boyfriend took a trip in our apartment and knocked his head into the bedroom door. His bowling ball head his fine but our cheap hollow bedroom door is now smashed in at the point of impact. We rent so we will have to replace it, but is this a job you think some rookies like us could handle or should we find a local handyman?

Aug. 13 2014 01:03 PM
Bob from Pelham, NY

I have a 2nd floor deck (10' x 12') over our kitchen porch; deck floor is asphalt roofing on which the water puddles in the middle rather than draining to the gutters. No leaks onto the porch yet, but I'm guessing this is not good long-term. Is there a DIY way for an amateur to fix the roof slant so water drains off (without ruining the roof)? Thanks for any advice.

P.S., I'm a former Accurate Building customer - Al did the inspection for our first home purchase in 1982, an apartment in a 10-family self-managed co-op in Brooklyn Heights, and I still appreciate his professionalism and patience in advising a very nervous first time buyer.

Aug. 13 2014 12:50 PM
John from Brooklyn

Hi Guys:
I am a teacher and can focus on home repair only during summer. I've been looking at the shingles on the apron roof outside my study window. (I should be writing college recommendations!) The shingles seem pretty worn, and there is a little moss growing on the roof. Do I need a need roof? How can you tell? How do you find a roofer you can trust?
Thanks!
John

Aug. 13 2014 12:47 PM

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