How to unclog a drain; drain unclogging

Keep drains clear by treating them monthly with boiling water and 2 tablespoons of baking soda or, infrequently, with a liquid drain cleaner. These cleaners may also clear partially clogged drains. If you use a chemical cleaner, follow the directions and rinse the drain afterwards.

Caution: Chemical drain cleaners are dangerous. If you splash any on your skin, wash it off immediately in cold water. If a drain is clogged and the cleaner remains in the sink, call a plumber. Don’t try unclogging the drain by other means; the leftover cleaner may splatter you.

How to make and install wood drawers

A drawer is nothing more than an open box. It can fit flush with the front of a cabinet or it can be made with a false front, a board that overlaps part of the cabinet front, concealing the gap between the cabinet and the drawer sides. A flush drawer must be more precisely made because this gap remains visible.

Plan drawers on graph paper with the rest of the cabinet. Design the back and bottom to fit into 1/4-inch grooves cut into the sides. In calculating the size of the front and bottom, allow for the thickness of the drawer sides minus the depth of the grooves the front and the bottom will fit into. Also allow room for wooden runners or metal slides. A standard slide takes up 1/2 inch.

How to fix a drawer

High humidity may temporarily swell wooden drawers, causing them to stick. If sticking persists in drier weather, lightly sand and then lubricate wooden runners with wax or soap, or clean metal slides and apply a small amount of grease. If you see any loose joints in the drawer, reglue them.

To fix a split drawer bottom, glue a canvas strip along the underside of the split and the bottom edges of the drawer sides. Use white glue.

Flush-front drawers sometimes get pushed too far into the cabinet. To prevent this, glue or tack small blocks of wood to the rear of the drawer runners to serve as stops.