Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Choosing a New Kitchen Range: Features to Consider Before You Buy

Choosing a new kitchen range can seem daunting at first. It’s a big investment. You’ll be living with your new appliance for years, and you want to get the most for your money.

Alex Mazhukhin, also known as Mr. Build It, was facing this issue when it came time to upgrade his kitchen. He didn’t panic. Instead, he did his research, on the various kitchen range features available these days. He ended pleased with the choice he made. And he’s here to share what he learned.

Choosing a New Kitchen Range

That time had finally come for us. The time to make the commitment to choose what kitchen we want in our home for the next few decades. Wow, if that doesn’t scare you, good. If it does scare you, it shouldn’t. Not if you do your research and talk to the right people. I know we did.

We marched into our local Home Depot store in Eagle, Idaho and spoke with appliance guru Eric. He simplified the choices down to four major components.

Gas vs Electric Ranges

The first component is your classic Ford/Chevy debate. Do you want to go gas or electric on the power source? Both have pros and cons.

For example, electric is convenient if that’s what you already have wired in, and it is super easy to clean the glass surface.

And then there is gas, the el natural. The pro is that you have incredible control over the temperature. No more watching helplessly as your dinner boils, then simmers, then boils again all on different parts of the pot.

With gas you are the captain. You control your destiny, whether in the oven or on the cook top.

Oven Capacity

When it comes to the oven, you have to ask yourself, how much is really enough? Because let’s be honest, while it’s just you and your significant other for now, what will happen in two or three years when it’ll be the three or four of you? And then you’ll decide to do a crazy thing like an ADULT and host your extended family over for Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner!

I’ll tell you what, you’d better get the right size in the beginning or uncle Jerry, who might not see straight, but will probably share his opinion on how there is not enough food. If that don’t sting, I don’t know what will.

Burner Size

The burner size is as simple as it sounds. It’s the surface area that puts out the most heat. So the bigger the burner size, the more options you have. With larger burners, you don’t have to worry if you will use your 5 gallon pot or that small little pot for boiling eggs because you’re ready for whatever comes your way in the next few decades.

Convection Fan vs No Convection Fan

Now, let’s talk about the power behind the punch: a convection fan versus no convection fan.

Eric explained it this way: when you bake or broil with a traditional oven that does not have a convection fan, temperatures vary all over the oven. For example, that’s exactly why homemade pizza can come out burnt on the crust, but raw and runny on the top.

Eric said a convection fan allows for the temperatures to circulate throughout the entire oven chamber and bakes/broils things very evenly and under control…or as we like to put it, “As Seen On TV” because we all know, that is not the way out entrees come out most of the time.

Choosing a Microwave Oven

And then we have the shoes to match our evening gown: the microwave to our range. Eric explained that for the purpose of resale, but most importantly ascetics, you want to try matching the rest of your kitchen appliances to your range, especially the microwave, since they both work together.

He said when trying to figure out what model to go with, look for the highest CFM (cubic feet per minute), which is the power rating for the amount of gas, smoke or smell that is exhausted or evacuated out as fast as possible. He said to make sure you get anything 400 to 500 CFM or more. This option is available with both electric or gas ranges, simply because you can either have burns, gas, or even both. So you better be ready for anything.

And of course, the ability to “nuke” two plates is out of this world. That means no more kids competing over who gets their lunch or dinner first, and that simply means that Mom and Dad can get to their dinners quicker.

What We Chose

We took everything Eric said close to heart, and found the perfect solution for our lifestyle and family dynamic. We went with a Samsung. Here’s why.
The Samsung 30 in. 5.8 cu. ft. Slide-In Gas Range with Self-Cleaning Convection Oven has the five burners that are all completely different in size, which gives us the ability to be efficient.

It offers the gas option, which we chose because we wanted something that would help with better heat control when cooking. Also, having a griddle was a dream. The gas option is perfect for this.

Eric recommended the matching Samsung Over the Range Microwave because it helps with resale. We also went with this particular microwave because the sleek, stainless steel look fit the overall open feel in the kitchen. Samsung really knocked it out of the park.


Ordering could not have been any easier. The kitchen range and microwave combo qualified for free shipping. We also paid for the installation and haul away service, which was definitely worth it. And the best part? They even hauled away the thick bulky boxes, which saved me a trip to the recycle place. It literally could not have been any easier.

Get details on appliance delivery and hook-up options online, or talk to a Home Depot associate at your nearest Home Depot store.

The post Choosing a New Kitchen Range: Features to Consider Before You Buy appeared first on The Home Depot Blog.

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Tuesday, August 29, 2017

How to Build a Giant Pegboard Accent Wall

This giant pegboard accent wall is trendy and quite practical. For Rachel Metz, of Living to DIY, it’s an eye-catching accent wall to her office space. We could easily see it working in a kid’s bedroom, or casual bonus room.

Rachel shows us the steps to follow so you can build your own pegboard accent wall in your home.

Jumbo Pegboard Accent Wall

Pinterest interior design inspiration has always been a weak spot of mine. I goo and gah over the photos that I search at one in the morning when I should be sleeping. When I decided to take on the task of transforming my office space, I decided make all my wildest Pinterest dreams come true. First on the list – not just a DIY giant pegboard but an entire DIY jumbo pegboard accent wall – yes, the entire wall!



Step 1

I started off by getting my plywood cut down to size at my local Home Depot store. This saves me a ton of time and it will for you too if you aren’t familiar with large cuts. I bought two pieces and cut them down to 46 in. x 92 in. since I wanted to put them together (flush) to cover my entire wall.

Per all DIY projects, these measurements will vary with your space.

Step 2

Take your ruler and figure out the spacing that works best for you! Everyone’s taste will be different whether you want the holes to be closer together or not. I took my pencil and went along the bottom/sides marking a line at every 5¾ in.

Step 3

When you have made your marks along the sides; take your ruler and pencil to draw straight lines at those markings which will create a grid.

Step 4

Where the lines intersect is where you will be drilling your hole to place your dowels or “pegs.”

For me, the spacing was a little too close, so I decided to go back in with my pencil to create a “X” at every other point. This will space it out which gives me that minimalist vibe I am looking for.

Step 5

You want to slide some wood underneath the plywood you are about to drill to protect the drill bit and flooring. When you prop it up, simply drill a hole exactly where your X’s are marked, or if you are okay with how close the grid is naturally, make a hole at every intersection.

Tip: You can purchase a drill guide or DIY one, which I show you in my full YouTube tutorial for this giant pegboard wall project. This will ensure your holes are straight so your dowels won’t go in crooked!

Tip: Drill a little bit to break through the surface so the wood doesn’t splinter so much then drill all the way through. This makes the holes look super clean opposed to splintering and sanding it down.

Step 6

Sand off your pencil markings once you’ve drilled all your holes.

Step 7

In order to install the pegboard accent wall properly, I needed to find the studs in the wall.

I marked the studs with a X and screwed my 2 x 4’s horizontally into the wall, which the pegboard will be directly screwed into. To find out where I wanted to hang the 2 x 4’s, I measured from the top of my plywood piece and made note of where there weren’t holes. I then measured and marked the same spacing on the wall when I put up the 2 x 4’s.

Tip: Make sure you have your level handy to ensure all your 2 x 4’s are straight.

Step 8

Please make sure you have a human handy to help you install your plywood.

Place the board up and align it so the beams are hiding into between the holes! Then drill your wood screws into the plywood then into your beams.

Step 9

I used wood putty to cover up the screws and then sanded it down once it dried – it looked flawless!

Step 10

Slide your dowels into the pegboard accent wall and measure where you’d like to cut. Grab some wood (width of your choice) and ensure your dowels are long enough to hold them up. Once I figured out how long I needed these, I cut them on my table saw.

Step 11

Hang them up! Have fun with it, get crazy and move stuff around on the pegboard accent wall until you are happy with the placement.

Creating an accent wall has always been on my list of DIY home decor and this was the perfect addition.

See Rachel’s video tutorial for this giant pegboard accent wall on YouTube.

Find more DIY projects here on The Home Depot Blog.

The post How to Build a Giant Pegboard Accent Wall appeared first on The Home Depot Blog.

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Monday, August 28, 2017

How to Build a Small Wooden Shed

Since buying her home in 2011, Amanda Hendrix, of Love & Renovations, has been making both big and small updates. The next thing on her list was to find a way to keep her outdoor tools organized and safe from the elements.

Check out how Amanda built a small wooden shed in 11 steps!

DIY Small Wooden Shed

This small wooden shed is perfect for keeping your lawn mower safe from the elements. It also has some great wall storage to hang other outdoor tools. You won’t need any fancy tools or DIY know-how to build this storage shed. With a few basic tools that you probably already have on hand, you can build this shed in a weekend and keep your backyard looking clean and clutter-free!



Step 1: Lay the foundation

First up, you’ll need some sort of foundation for your shed.

We originally planned on burying some cinder blocks to rest our shed on. We quickly realized, though, how difficult that would be with our Central Texas “soil.” If you dig down more than a few inches, it’s almost entirely rock! So instead, we chose to use shed skids.

Basically, all this means is that we used pressure-treated 4 x 6 boards that we laid directly on level, compacted soil. This was the best choice for us. For one thing, the shed was going to be small. We also wanted to be able to quickly and easily move the shed if needed.

For a larger shed, one that will be in a location permanently, or a shed that will be on ground that is prone to freezing, you’re going to want to use a more permanent foundation. Be sure to check local building codes if you use a permanent foundation.

We cut our skids down to the length of the shed (which is 72 in.), leveled the ground, ensured the soil was compact, and laid them down so that the outside of each skid was 36 in. apart (which would be the width of our shed). We made sure the skids were level, with each other, and that they were exactly parallel. There’s a lot of little adjusting and re-checking involved here, but this step is vital to ensure the rest of your shed is square, straight, and level.

Step 2: Build the base

Now you’re going to build the base of your shed.

We used pressure-treated wood for the base since it was the closest to the ground and the most likely to be exposed to the elements. Create a rectangle in the dimensions of your shed (again, ours was 72 in. x 36 in. – our only goal was to fit the lawnmower inside, so we kept it small) using outdoor wood screws. Be sure to check that it’s square as you go.

Once you’ve built your base, cut a board that will fit lengthwise inside the base and attach it.

Then, add support boards perpendicular to that on either side – we did two on each side.

Cut your plywood base down to the correct size to fit on top of the base, then prime and paint it.

You can leave it bare if you purchase pressure-treated plywood that is intended to be used outside, but we went with non pressure-treated wood, so it was vital to paint it. We used oil-based porch and floor paint – we’ve found that to be the most durable when it comes to these types of buildings, and it’s relatively easy to keep clean as well.

Be sure to give it ample time to dry – oil-based paint typically takes 24 hours or so before you can handle it – the longer you can give it, the better.

Install your flooring by simply screwing the plywood on top of the base. Then, bring your base out to your foundation and lay it in place. We did not attach the base to the foundation in any way, because we knew we’d be moving the shed at some point and we wanted the flexibility of moving it easily.

Step 3: Frame the walls

Framing out the walls is very similar to building the base. It’s the exact same process, only we used regular 2 x 4s (not pressure-treated). You could definitely use pressure-treated wood here, but it’s significantly more expensive – this part of the shed will not be exposed to the elements, so a plain old 2 x 4 is just fine.

For our shed, we wanted a slightly slanted roof, so we made one wall 5½ ft. tall and the other 5 ft. You’ll create a rectangle for your wall just like you did for the base, then add your studs every 16- or 24-in. We went with 24 in. simply to save on wood and since it is an outside building, we didn’t feel the need to build it to standard 16 in. centers.

In this step, you’ll only build the two side walls (the ones that run lengthwise down the shed) – you will build the back wall of the shed in place after these have been installed.

Step 4: Install the framing

Once your walls are framed, you can put them into place. Simply use your outdoor wood screws to attach them directly to the base of the shed. Don’t forget to pre-drill here, and you’ll definitely need a second person on hand to help you hold the wall in place as you work.

Step 5: Build your final wall

You will build your final wall in place.

We started by installing the base plate and the studs on either side, since those can easily be measured. Once the outside studs are in place, the top plate must be measured and installed at an angle. This part can be can be intimidating, but if you cut an extra piece that is the same length as the base plate and clamp it between the two outside studs, it will keep them in-square while you measure for the top plate. Once the top plate is installed, measure for a center stud, cut to length, and install.

Step 6: Add the ceiling joists

For the ceiling joists, we cut 4 pieces of 2 x 4 to 47½ in. and then drew out the “birdsmouth” joints, or the little cut-outs that rest on the top plates to support the roof sheathing. We spaced them out evenly across the top and secured them with screws.

Step 7: It’s time for siding

Now comes the fun part – siding! Installing the siding is very simple, and probably the most rewarding part of the process as it’s finally going to look like a shed!

Simply cut the siding down to the appropriate size, have a partner help you hold it in place, and use construction adhesive and your nail gun to attach it. Siding is typically interlocking, so as you lay it be sure it all fits together properly.

Step 8: Add the roof

Now, take your second (thinner) piece of plywood, cut it down to size, and lay it on top of the ceiling joists. Use the same outdoor screws to attach it.

Step 9: Add trim

Now it’s time to put the finishing touches on the shed.

We used 1 x 4 boards to add trim to all of the corners. We used the 1 x 6 boards on both the front and the back of the shed to make the finished product look more polished (and to hide the slight gap between the ceiling joist and the edge of the shed). This can be attached with construction adhesive and your nail gun.

Step 10: Paint

I know I said the siding was the most rewarding part, but this might actually be the best part. It’s time to stain or paint your shed whatever color your heart desires.

We went with navy siding and white trim, to match the workshop in our backyard.

Step 11: Add the roofing

This technically could be done sooner, but we chose to save the shingles for last because we didn’t want to accidentally get any paint on them.

This process is relatively simple – just lay your felt barrier, then nail the shingles in one sheet at a time. For this step, be sure to follow the directions laid out for the specific brand and product you purchase, as every different shingle brands will require different offsets.

The Small Wooden Shed Completed

How to Build a Small Wooden Shed

Find more DIY projects here on The Home Depot Blog.

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