Ask This Old House

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Season 4 Show Descriptions

Showing results for "Season 4"
Scan the episodes below and select "more" to get information on products or services you saw on that episode.

Episode #426
Installing a mini-split air conditioning system, what is it?, de-thatching a lawn… more
Episode #425
Cutting ceramic and stone tile, installing a sump pump … more
Episode #424
Replacing an old dishwasher, what is it?, sharpening a wood chisel, using lawn spreaders… more
Episode #423
Replacing an interior "hollow-core" door with a new "solid-core" door, repairing a leaky kitchen faucet… more
Episode #422
Repairing stripped threads on a cast-iron radiator, fixing a grading problem, what is it?, stabilizing a wobbly newel post, refinishing an old cast-iron bathtub… more
Episode #421
Installing an instantaneous water heater, planting trees to save energy, installing cellulose insulation … more
Episode #420
Installing a granite driveway marker, what is it, repairing a hot water radiator system … more
Episode #419
Building a custom radiator cover, installing a steam humidifier in a forced-air heating system … more
Episode #418
Transplanting a white spruce tree, what is it?, extending a staircase handrail … more
Episode #417
Repairing a residential well, repairing a hole in vinyl siding … more
Episode #416
Choosing and using hammers, repairing a pressure-assisted toilet, repairing a plastered wall … more
Episode #415
Installing a low cost in-ground sprinkler system, what is it?, pouring a concrete footing for a deck … more
Episode #414
Installing a radon mitigation system, pruning an apple tree for fruit production… more
Episode #413
Installing a new vinyl floor, what is it?, preventing frozen pipes… more
Episode #412


Original Air Date: Week of December 22, 2005

Host Kevin O'Connor heads to southern California and meets with a local expert to learn about the proper tools techniques for window washing. Then back in the loft, Kevin, along with landscaping contractor Roger Cook, plumbing and heating expert Richard Trethewey, and general contractor Tom Silva ask, "What is it?" Then, Richard helps a pair of homeowners flush the sediment out of their aging electric water heater. Later, up in the loft, Richard demonstrates several water heater maintenance tips.

Viewer Tips
Host Kevin O'Connor heads to sunny southern California where he and a local expert help a homeowner learn how to wash windows like a professional. Window cleaning expert Garry Jalowka tells them that ordinary dishwashing detergent mixed with water works best because it doesn't evaporate quickly like ammonia-based cleaners do. He then shows how to get professional-quality results using different types and sizes of squeegees and rags.

Where to Find It
Window cleaning contractor:
Mr Window Cleaning
Lake Elsinore, CA 92530-7326

Technical assistance provided by:
International Window Cleaning Association
703-971-7771

What is it?
The guys try to guess the intended purpose of an unusual-looking product.

Where to Find It
Tom showed a tube used for melting ice dams in an emergency.

Ice Viper Roof Ice Dam Melting Tube
Manufacturer: Ice Dam Removal Systems, Inc.
800-686-8915

Flushing an electric water heater
Plumbing and heating expert Richard Trethewey helped a pair of homeowners flush sediment from their electric water heater. The water heater was 10 years old and had not been adequately maintained. Richard suggested draining the tank to remove the sediment, but warned that the tank might later leak due to its age. Richard flushed the tank using a hose connected to an electric pump which pulled the water and sediment from inside the tank to the outside of the house. Once the water ran clear, Richard added some water to the tank to stir up any remaining sediment on the bottom and then pumped it out again. A few weeks later, the homeowners reported that the tank had started leaking, just like Richard warned that it might. So, Richard replaced their water heater and brought the old one up into the loft for an autopsy, which revealed that corrosion inside the tank had caused it to leak.

Where to Find It
Replacement electric water heater (not shown), anode rods and electric elements provided by:
Gourley Co.
80 Felton St
Waltham, MA 02453
781-894-9500

Replacement electric water heater (not shown) manufactured by:
Rheem-Rudd
800-432-8373
Episode #411
Snowthrowers, what is it?, where to find it… more
Episode #410
Pruning an overgrown privet hedge, installing a new basement laundry sink … more
Episode #409
Viewer tips, re-shingling a garage roof using asphalt-fiberglass shingles… more
Episode #408
Circular saw 101, what is it?, installing a new outdoor faucet using PEX, cabling an oak tree to prevent splitting… more
Episode #407
Removing and preventing moss, algae and lichen from a roof, what is it?, repairing a leaky water valve, planting shade-tolerant ground cover under a European Beech tree … more
Episode #406
Building a raised garden bed with landscape timbers, clearing a bathtub drain. … more
Episode #405
Caring for a rose bush, how to steady a wobbly toilet, plugging a basement water leak using hydraulic cement.… more
Episode #404
Repairing a flat wheelbarrow tire, repairing an aluminum rain gutter, viewer tips, installing a thermal expansion tank … more
Episode #403
Installing an under-sink water filter, planting a drought-resistant tree.… more
Episode #402
Quieting creaky stairs, static cling solution, and installing an electric shut-off valve for a washing machine … more
Episode #401
Repairing a mortared stone walkway, patching an oak floor… more