Ask This Old House

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Season 6 Show Descriptions

Showing results for "Season 6"
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Episode #626
Rebuilding a toilet tank, Lawn Watering, Building a simple bookcase… more
Episode #625
Installing a water pressure reducing valve, Choosing the best types of grass seed, What is it?, Installing crown molding on kitchen cabinets… more
Episode #624
Replacing broken tile, Cutting ceramic and stone tile, Installing glass tile on a kitchen backsplash… more
Episode #623
Overseeding a lawn using a slice seeder, Viewer tip, Preparing a home for sale, Finding and fixing a mysterious plumbing leak … more
Episode #622
Installing granite steps, Choosing "Keyless" Deadbolts, Replacing polybutylene water piping… more
Episode #621
Installing an old full-mortise lockset into a new door, Installing a pellet stove, Non-Gasoline Lawn Mowers… more
Episode #620
Building a soccer goal with PVC pipe, Building stilts, Building a sandbox… more
Episode #619
Increasing attic insulation, Installing landscape lighting, Replacing an old kitchen faucet… more
Episode #618
Installing a Water Softener, Installing fiber-cement siding … more
Episode #617
Improving a lawn, What is it?, Water Supply Piping… more
Episode #616
Replacing a leaky skylight, What is it?, Repairing a 3-way light switch… more
Episode #615
The ATOH crew repairs a smelly dishwasher, transplants a rosebush, changes a circular saw blade, and plays another exciting round of What Is It?… more
Episode #614
Installing thermostatic radiator valves on hydronic radiators, What is it?, Making a refrigerator fit into an opening that is too small, Viewer tip… more
Episode #613
Installing a vinyl fence, Installing an epoxy coating on a garage floor… more
Episode #612
Determining landscape grades, What is it?, Seeing inside walls, Repairing a bathtub drain that won't hold water… more
Episode #611
Improving front steps with bluestone, What is it?, Installing a propane kitchen stove… more
Episode #610
Diverting storm runoff to a "rain garden," What is it?, Refinishing a wood floor … more
Episode #609
Picking a Christmas tree, What is it?, Safety equipment, Caulking a leaky window… more
Episode #608
Improving a muddy backyard, Choosing space heaters, Preventing condensation in a bathroom fan… more
Episode #607
Installing replacement windows, Heating water more efficiency, Home energy audit… more
Episode #606
Removing a dangerous tree, What is it?, Installing interior door trim… more
Episode #605
Repairing a jammed garbage disposer, What is it?, Stripping exterior paint, Drilling and notching in joists … more
Episode #604
Preventing floods, Removing and replacing foundation plants, What is it?, Fixing rotted wood with epoxy… more
Episode #603
Replacing a toilet flange, What is it?, Repairing cracked plaster, Viewer Tip… more
Episode #602

Original Air Date: Week of October 11, 2007

Up in the loft, general contractor Tom Silva shows host Kevin O'Connor a few different types of "squares" used for general carpentry. Then Tom and Kevin, along with plumbing and heating expert Richard Trethewey and host Kevin O'Connor ask, "What is it?" Afterward, Roger helps a homeowner build a new patio using concrete paving bricks.

Carpentry Squares

Tom shows Kevin a few different types of squares using in framing and general carpentry. He first shows a “framing” square, which can be used for tasks like laying out stair stringers and rafters. Tom also shows a “speed” square that can handle some of the same tasks as a framing square but is much smaller and can easily be kept in a tool belt or apron. Next, Tom shows a “combination” square, which he often uses for fine trim work.

Framing squares, speed squares and combination squares can all be found at your local home center or lumberyard. Empire Level manufactures a wide range of carpentry squares.

What Is It?

Roger shows WeedBall, a device used for applying herbicide without spraying.

How to Install a Patio Using Concrete Bricks

Roger helped a homeowner with a small, urban yard install a new patio using concrete pavers made to look like clay bricks. They started by removing the existing sand and soil. Next, Roger determined the finished height of the patio and ran string lines to use as a reference. Then, Roger used a gas-powered “plate compactor” to compact the existing soil. He then added a layer of “pack,” which is a combination of stone and stone dust. After running the plate compactor over the pack, Roger added a 1-inch layer of sand and used pipes as rails to “screed” the sand perfectly level. With the sand in place, Roger laid the first row of pavers called the “header course.” Next, he installed the remaining pavers in a “running bond” pattern, staggering the joints for stability. With all the pavers in place, Roger installed plastic edging around the perimeter. Afterward, he spread sand on top of the pavers and vibrated it in-between the pavers using the plate compactor. Finally, they swept off the remaining sand and the installation was complete.

Concrete patio pavers made to look like red brick:

45-55 Power Rd.
Westford, MA 01886
Episode #601
Replacing a bathtub drain trap, What is it?, Repairing a cracked drywall ceiling… more