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S20 E5: Smart Doorbells, Recessed Lights

Ross discusses the pros and cons of smart doorbells; Mauro demonstrates techniques for painting wood paneling; Heath shares some of his most-used tools and helps a homeowner install recessed lights.

Previous episode: S20 E4 | Next episode: S20 E6

In this episode:

Home technology expert Ross Trethewey shows host Kevin O’Connor how smart a doorbell can be (even catching him arriving late for work!). Ross sets up a mock wall to show Kevin the different types of smart doorbells, and the two discuss how popular and common they’re becoming. And, despite having several smart doorbells on the wall, Ross explains they all have the same basic functions, including cameras, motion detection, and two-way audio.

Ross continues by showing Kevin the differences between the doorbells. Some models need hardwiring to existing low-voltage doorbell circuits, while others have rechargeable batteries. Ross also explains that regardless of the power source, all smart doorbells utilize the home’s WiFi system, highlighting the importance of a strong signal.

Finally, Kevin hits the topic on everyone’s mind: safety and security. Ross explains what can happen when hackers access a smart doorbell and what you can look for when choosing the most secure door locks. Ross suggests checking out encryption, authentication processes, and the fine print regarding how smart doorbell companies handle data.

Next, expert painter Mauro Henrique teaches Kevin all about painting wood paneling. When Kevin asks if folks are right to be nervous about painting wood paneling, Mauro explains that it’s possible, and although it might not be the traditional take on paneling, it’s up to the homeowner. Then, the two set out to roughen the surface of a panel wall with a bit of sandpaper.

With the sanding finished, Mauro shows Kevin how to apply a coat of primer to the paneling. With brushes and rollers in hand, they coat the entire surface, working the primer into the beadboard cracks and the moldings’ profiles. After waiting an hour, the two brush and roll a coat of paint over the surface, ensuring that all cracks and crevices receive color. Once finished, Mauro explains that they’ll wait about two hours before coming back and applying the final coat for a beautiful finish.

Then, Kevin meets master electrician Heath Eastman to talk tools. With Heath’s tool bag on full display, Kevin asks which tools he uses the most. Heath explains that his linesman’s pliers, multi-bit screwdriver, diagonal cutters, wire strippers, electrical tester, and a torpedo level are his go-to tools. Heath also explains that a dust shroud, which collects drywall dust during drilling, is essential for keeping jobs as neat as possible.

After explaining his favorite tools, Heath heads to a homeowner’s house to help her with a dimly lit room. The homeowner explains that she has recessed lights in some of her rooms, but the children’s playroom is lit only with a lamp. Heath knows just what to do, offering recessed lighting in the playroom to match the other areas in the home.

After accessing the layout of the framing and the plumbing in the ceiling, Heath gets to work. After ensuring that the power is off, Heath rewires a switch-controlled outlet so that it’s on constant power. Then, after removing the switch, Heath can look into the wall cavity to ensure that it’s free of obstruction. Next, Heath drills holes in the ceiling for recessed lights (utilizing the dust shroud for mess control) and inside the wall for wiring.

With the homeowner’s help, Heath pulls wires for the new lights through the ceiling and back to the switch location before wiring the individual devices. Then, back at the switch, Heath installs a dimmer switch to control the room’s brightness.


How to Choose a Smart Doorbell

Home technology expert Ross Tretheway shows host Kevin O’Connor everything he needs to know about smart home doorbells.

Where to find it?

Ross explains how smart doorbells work, and displayed five different models:

Expert assistance with this segment was provided by Ring.


How to Paint Wood Paneling

Master painter Mauro Henrique shows host Kevin O’Connor a universal approach to painting wood paneling.

Where to find it?

To prep the wood paneling, Mauro used a sanding block with 220 grit sandpaper, which can be found at home centers.

To prime the wood, Mauro used Zinsser BullsEye 1-2-3 Interior/Exterior Water-Based Gray Primer, which is manufactured by Rust-Oleum. Mauro likes to use the gray primer instead of white when he’s painting with darker colors. For paint, Mauro chose Benjamin Moore Acrylic Interior Paint in the color “Crisp Romaine


Top 7 Tools for Electrical Projects

Master electrician Heath Eastman shows host Kevin O’Connor the tools he uses the most during day-to-day electrical work.


How To Install Recessed Lights

Where to find it?

Heath installed HALO brand HLBSL 4 in. Color Selectable New Construction or Remodel Canless Recessed Integrated LED Kit, which are manufactured by Cooper Lighting.

The other tools and materials Heath used to install the recessed lights, including the drill, dust shroud, and wiring, can all be found at home centers and electrical supply stores.

Original Air Date: Oct 28, 2021, Season 20; Ep. 5 23:42


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