How to Organize Your Home

Posted by: on January 3rd, 2012 | Make A Comment

Watch this video for lots of ideas on how to organize your home.

Learn how to transform your space from cluttered to clean and organized in just three simple steps – elimination, organization and storage. You’ll also learn little tips to make the job easier like the most efficient way to organize your clothes and ways to categorize all that stuff! Don’t forget to check out homedepot.com for containers, shelving, storage systems, and everything else you need to get organized. And you can also visit The Home Depot How-To Community Forum for advice from expert associates.

See more DIY and home improvement videos here on the Home Depot blog and on The Home Depot’s YouTube channel.

Use a Tension Rod to Organize Spray Bottles

Posted by: on January 3rd, 2012 | 7 Comments

Day 3 of 31 Days, 31 Ways to Get Organized: When you open the cabinet under sink, do all the cleaning bottles and sponges fall out? Make more floor space in the cabinet by hanging spray bottles from a tension rod. It’ll keep them neat and free up space for other important items.

Storage and organization tip: free up space under the sink by hanging spray bottles from a tension rod

Image via Pinterest

[Editor's Note: 31 Days, 31 Ways to Get Organized is a series featuring clever storage and organization tips that will help you clean house in the new year]

How to Use Chrome Shelving to Add Storage Space

Posted by: on January 2nd, 2012 | 6 Comments

Day #2 Tip of 31 Days, 31 Ways to Get Organized: Add extra storage to your kitchen or pantry with a chrome shelving unit. Outfitted with clear containers filled with your kitchen staples, it looks organized and adds an industrial look.

Chrome shelving adds storage and organization to the kitchen in this industrial, contemporary loft

We found this awesome kitchen storage idea at this Apartment Therapy house tour.

Buy this 4-shelf chrome, commercial-grade shelving unit online or in stores right now — it’s on sale!

[Editor's Note: 31 Days, 31 Ways to Get Organized is a series featuring clever storage and organization tips that will help you clean house in the new year]

Christmas Tree Recycling Gives Your Tree One More Useful Service

Posted by: on January 2nd, 2012 | 2 Comments

Recycle your old Christmas tree

Once the holidays are over, give or take a bowl game or two, it’s time to take down the decorations and bid a fond farewell to the tree that created so much Christmas spirit in your home. How about letting your natural tree provide one more useful service by recycling it instead of sending it to a landfill?

There are tree recycling or mulching projects in communities across the U.S. Often the local sanitation department or public works department will shred the tree to provide mulch for your garden or for city parks. Depending on your area, the chipped trees can be used to renew hiking paths or to create soil erosion barriers along lake shores.

The Home Depot offers Christmas tree recycling in select areas; call your local store to find out if it is participating. You can also check for local tree recycling (or other types of recycling) at Earth911. Look for “recycling search” near the top of the page, search “Christmas tree” and plug in your ZIP code.

Here’s to a happy and healthy new year… and to making good use of our former Christmas trees.

Photo (cc) sdminor81

Home Maintenance New Year’s Resolutions #7: Prevent Wear on My Outdoor Power Tools

Posted by: on January 1st, 2012 | Make A Comment

Outdoor Power Equipment Maintenance

Most of us have at least a few pieces of outdoor power equipment in our power tool arsenal to help us take care of our home and yard, but what do you do with yours after the fall growing season is over? Do you just pull them into your garage or shed and let them sit until spring?

Here are seven key maintenance tips to consider that will help you extend the life of your outdoor power equipment all year round:

1. Drain the gasoline and oil out of each outdoor power tool at the end of the fall growing season. Fuel that is older than 30 days can develop moisture and lead to gum deposits in the engine, carburetor or fuel line. When spring rolls around and the growing season begins, fill with fresh gas and oil.

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31 Days, 31 Ways to Get Organized

Posted by: on January 1st, 2012 | Make A Comment

A new year brings with it the promise of a fresh start. This year, disorganization is out, and clean, clutter-free spaces are in, and with 31 Days, 31 Ways, we plan to offer you solutions for those jumbled closets, kitchen cabinets in disarray, and under-the-bed junk. Some of these tips are tried-and-true organization best practices, and others are clever ideas from our friends all over the web. Follow 31 Days, 31 Ways to Get Organized, and let’s kick off the new year in clean, mess-free bliss!

Day 1 of 31 Days, 31 Ways to Get Organized: Store your Christmas ornaments for next year.

Wrapping Christmas ornaments in newspaper or tissue paper is the most popular method for packing up ornaments come January, but it isn’t the fastest or the most full-proof. One ornament inevitably winds up crushed at the bottom of the heap, or a cardboard box gets gets smashed or damaged. Try something new this year. Rather than wrapping your ornaments in newspaper, try storing them in plastic cups attached to cardboard à la Martha Stewart.

Store Christmas ornaments smartly in a plastic storage container in paper cups

Martha Stewart’s instructions are to hot glue plastic cups to a piece of cardboard to create individual cubbies for each ornament. Stack the cardboard layers in a plastic box, and label the box at the top, “Christmas Ornaments.”

No broken ornaments next year!

[Editor's Note: 31 Days, 31 Ways to Get Organized is a series featuring clever storage and organization tips that will help you clean house in the new year]

Home Maintenance New Year’s Resolutions #6: Finally Invest in a Programmable Thermostat

Posted by: on December 31st, 2011 | Make A Comment

A programmable thermostat

Programmable Thermostats

As we mentioned in our post Learn How to Maintain My Thermostat, air conditioners and heating systems are some of the highest energy drainers in our homes. Even though the latest technological advances have decreased the amount of energy required to run our heating and cooling systems, there are several do-it-yourself steps you can take to help get more mileage out of your HVAC system and save on energy costs.

Upgrading to a new programmable thermostat is the next step in saving some real dough.

Estimates on energy cost savings when using a programmable thermostat range from 7-40 percent. Most experts agree that a household can save an average of 20-30 percent off their energy bills, depending on region and climate.

The Home Depot carries a large selection of programmable thermostats with such features at various price points.

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How to Use Joint Compound to Repair Damaged Drywall and Create Texture, Part 1

Posted by: on December 30th, 2011 | Make A Comment

Once upon a time in the 1980s when wallpaper was a hot home décor trend, a home was built with wallpaper attached directly to the drywall. One day, the new owner of the house, CraftyGalDIY (a.k.a. me) decided to give the bathroom a makeover. First step, ditch the wallpaper. Off to the store I went to get a scorer, wallpaper remover and paint.

Like a good little, amateur DIYer, I scored the wallpaper, steamed it and began to pull it off the walls. Down came the wallpaper and part of the drywall paper, too. Since no primer was applied to the wall before the wallpaper was put up, the wallpaper became a part of the drywall. Frustrated, I dropped the project and began to really hate my bathroom.

Joint Compound

Image from CraftyGalDIY

I happened upon a Drywall Texturing thread started by homedepot.com community member tbsmiley33, seeking advice on texturing bathroom walls using the Spanish Knife method of applying joint compound. I was immediately interested since I was having some drywall issues of my own.

Paul, another community member, shared a link to DrywallSchool.com. The website provides step-by-step instructions on drywall texturing and a video tutorial on the Spanish Knife technique.
Call it a DIY epiphany, but I believed this Forum thread provided the solution to my problem with my bathroom walls. Could I really solve my drywall and wallpaper problems by using joint compound?  I checked out the instructions on Drywall School.com, made my shopping list, went shopping at my local The Home Depot store, then returned home to try to fix my walls…fingers crossed. :)

Did it work? Is my love-hate-relationship with my bathroom over? Check back next week for part 2 of How to Use Joint Compound To Repair Damaged Drywall and Create Texture.

Have you created texture on wall using spackle or joint compound?

Editor’s Note: Want more advice from our experts? Join the conversation. Visit the Forum for DIY tips and tricks from our Store Associates. From the Forum Friday is our weekly column highlighting expert advice.

Home Maintenance New Year’s Resolutions #5: Learn How to Maintain my HVAC

Posted by: on December 30th, 2011 | Make A Comment

HVAC Maintenance

Air conditioners and heating systems are some of the highest energy drainers in our homes. Even though the latest technological advances have decreased the amount of energy required to run our heating and cooling systems, there are several do-it-yourself steps you can take to help get more mileage out of your HVAC system and save on energy costs.

According to HVAC Hub, a leading resource for homeowners and HVAC professionals, there are 15 DIY maintenance tips to help keep your heating and cooling systems operating efficiently:

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Home Maintenance New Year’s Resolutions #4: Stop Air Conditioning the Outdoors

Posted by: on December 29th, 2011 | Make A Comment

Home Winterization

Since New Year’s Day is almost here, it’s a great time to discuss winterizing your home. There are many small projects you can do that will keep the cold air out and save you money on utility bills.

One test that everyone should try is the hair-dryer & ribbon test for doors and windows that demonstrates whether or not you have gaps that need plugging.

Here is a picture of the ribbon test set up. Tape the ribbons on the door near the bottom so the ribbons lay on the floor in front of the door on the inside. In this photo, the ribbons are lying still on the floor.

Once on the other side of the door, aim your hair dryer at the door threshold and turn it on. If the ribbons don’t move, you have a sharp, air tight seal. If the ribbons spring to life, you have some work to do. Here you can clearly see our ribbons dancing around, indicating gaps that need to be plugged. You can also run this same test on your windows.

To plug any gaps around windows and doors, think weather stripping.

The Home Depot carries over 300 weather stripping-related products on homedepot.com. You can find all kinds of door seals, sweeps, bottoms and thresholds that help you get air-tight seals to keep out the elements.

We also have window insulation kits that improve the insulating power – called the R-value – of single pane windows by up to 90%. These kits will stop window drafts and limit heat loss. Caulk is another great application. Apply caulk in any gaps you find in your baseboards or crown moulding.

Next, let’s talk insulation. One of the best ways to get a warm cozy home is by adding insulation in your attic and basements to reach the recommended R-value for your area. This R-Value chart paints a colorful picture so you know how much insulation you need for your attics and floors.

Remember to stock up on ice melt and traction control mixtures to melt away snow and ice from your porches, walkways, driveways and sidewalks. Make sure your snow blower is ready for the season by checking the spark plugs, gasoline and oil levels.

To make sure you are on top of these all-important tasks, make a note on your calendar, day-timer, blackberry or smart phone for January 1, 2012. At that time, conduct the ribbon tests and consider adding insulation if your R-values are not up to code. Then, complete your home winterization planning by ordering some ice melt from homedepot.com, and checking to make sure your snow blower is in tip-top shape.

Editor’s Note: In this 7-part series on home maintenance, we take a look at different home maintenance topics that sometimes slip our minds. We offer research and advice on how to tackle each one without emptying your wallet. Be sure to use homedepot.com as a resource throughout the year to successfully complete each task and save money.