Thursday, January 05, 2006

By request for Melissa

I fixed our garage door on the weekend. It seems that I have found my niche as a handyman of sorts (it's kind of what I do at work too). Ever since the cold weather hit, the door from our house to our garage has not closed properly. It was fine in the fall, but now that winter is here things seem to have shifted a bit, in this case enough that the latch for the door did not line up properly with the strike-plate. At its worst you had to really pull up on the door handle in order to get the dead-bolt locked and unlocked, and the latch would not latch at all. It was easy to see what the problem was as the gap between the door and the frame was not the same all the way down, but I did not have any ideas how to fix it. A quick trip to the internet later and I was able to find a solution to the problem. The first thing to try was to tighten the hinge screws. When I did that I found that most of the screws were turning without tightening at all. So I decided to take the door off the frame altogether and start from scratch. I stuck matchsticks into all of the screw holes with some glue and waited for the glue to dry before nipping off all the parts that stuck out with a utility knife. Then I drilled pilot holes for the three long screws (the rest I discovered were self tapping which is why they kept turning instead of tightening) and got Melissa's help to hold the door while I got ready to attach it to the frame. It is a fire door, however, so that is not an easy task, the thing weighs a ton! After getting everything lined up I slipped a shim (in this case a cardboard coaster) in between the bottom hinge and the frame. This pushed the bottom of the door out a little and moved the latch up. When all the screws were back in place, I gave it a test close and it latched perfectly! Now it closes easily, and the dead-bolt can be unlocked without two hands (a big plus if you are carrying a baby in from the garage).

I really enjoy having these little jobs to do around the house. The week before it was a leaking sink drain. At the rate that they seem to pop up though I can imagine that if I did not stay on top of them that it would eventually become an overwhelming task. Unfortunately, I don't have a lot of tools, so these things inevitably require a trip to Home Depot. Thank God we live close to one. Elijah is quite the little helper too. Helping to crawl all over my legs while I have my head under the sink, helping to moisten all of my tools before I use them, he does it all.

On another note, I went for another run today. Just 25 minutes again, but at a little slower pace. I need to get into running more days a week for my training so I figure I might as well start now while the miles are still low. The weather is great for it today too.


melissa said...

He is your little helper, a Bob The Builder, or Norm Abram in the making. :)

lisa said...

hey, can you help get chad motivated to do my kick plates???? lol. good for you!

ryoohki99 said...

Whew! I am tired just reading all that. Thanks goodness i still live in an apartment, but I just know Mike is itching to do some repair work on a house when we get one!