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How to breathe new life Into old sneakers

How to breathe new life Into old sneakers
THE FAMILY HANDYMAN

All you need is an old toothbrush and a little toothpaste to get your old sneakers looking like new! Non-gel white toothpaste works great for cleaning white-soled sneakers (coloured toothpaste may stain rather than clean sneakers). Apply toothpaste to an old toothbrush and then work the paste into the dirty spots. Leave the toothpaste on the shoes for about ten minutes, and then wipe it off with a damp towel.

These simple organisational tricks can save you big dollars. 

Repeat the process if necessary.

How to make your work boots last longer

How to make your work boots last longer
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Extend the life of your work boots or shoes by coating the toes with a rubbery protective shell. The product shown here is called Tuff Toe and can be found at shoe stores or online.

How to make windshield wipers last longer

How to make windshield wipers last longer
THE FAMILY HANDYMAN

“When you’re behind the wheel, nothing is more crucial than good visibility. But like most other drivers, I usually procrastinate cleaning my windshield wipers or even replacing wiper blades if necessary. Windshield wipers are notorious for drying out and cracking in a short time. To help prolong their life and clean them, soak a clean white rag with your favourite glass cleaner. Wipe the rag up and down the length of your wiper blades. You’ll see the results on the rag, and you’ll see out your windshield much better in the rain.” — Jim Nobilione

How to make your pipes last longer

How to make your pipes last longer
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Frequent use of some chemical drain cleaners can soften plastic drain pipes and corrode metal ones. Go easy on your pipes by using a drain cleaner made of natural enzymes that eat away at grease, oil and soap blockages. This type of drain cleaner isn’t nearly as aggressive as traditional cleaners and is best used as a preventive measure. Use it when you first notice the slow draining.

These mindful shopping tips will save you money and make you happier!

MYTH: It’s okay to pour grease down the drain while running hot water.

FACT: Sure, the hot water will keep the grease from hardening, but only until it cools off farther down your drain lines. That just makes the clog harder to clear. Never pour grease down your drain!

How to make permanent markers last longer

How to make permanent markers last longer
THE FAMILY HANDYMAN

To bring your permanent marker back to life, begin by removing the back from the maker. (This will be different for each brand of permanent marker – for Sharpies simply remove the back nib.) Next, deposit a few drops of isopropyl “rubbing” alcohol onto the felt material inside. Shake the marker a bit to ensure the rubbing alcohol is absorbed. It’s the solvent that the ink is mixed with that dries out first, making the pigment unable to flow. Once the felt absorbs the rubbing alcohol for a couple of minutes the marker will be practically good as new!

How to make a spreader last longer

How to make a spreader last longer
THE FAMILY HANDYMAN

Chemicals from fertilisers speed up corrosion of the metal parts of your spreader, so rinse it out every time you use it. After it dries, coat all the moving parts with a light lubricant spray like WD-40.

These money mistakes could be costing you thousands.

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How to make your winter boots last longer

How to make your winter boots last longer
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Your shoes can take a beating during the winter months. If you ever use salt to melt ice and snow it can leave a nasty white residue on your footwear that doesn’t look great. You can clean off the residue quickly with a simple solution that you can make at home. Fill a spray bottle with water and add a couple of tablespoons of white vinegar. Shake it up a bit and spritz the mixture onto a clean paper towel. Gently wipe your shoes, and watch the salt residue disappear. Keep the spray bottle near your shoe collection, so you can clean off your shoes as the season goes.

How to make drill bits last longer

How to make drill bits last longer
THE FAMILY HANDYMAN

Use Boelube to make your drill bits last longer. Whenever you drill multiple holes in metal, stick the bit into the lube before starting each one. It also works on metal-cutting reciprocating and band saw blades. It reduces friction, which makes the cutting edge last longer.

How to make a sawhorse last longer

How to make a sawhorse last longer
THE FAMILY HANDYMAN

The rough, saw-chewed top rails of most sawhorses can scratch finished wood or the painted surfaces on your projects. To provide a non-marring surface, cover the tops of your sawhorses with scraps of old carpet or rugs. Measure the size of carpet pieces that you need to wrap around the top rails of your sawhorses. Use a straightedge and marker to draw your cut lines on the back of the carpet. Then use a sharp utility knife to cut the carpet along the lines. It may take a few passes with the knife to get through the tough woven backing.

Finally, use a staple gun to secure the carpet pieces to the sides of the top rails. Now you have a padded, non-marring work surface for all of your projects!

How to make carpets last longer

How to make carpets last longer
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On carpet, dirt acts like thousands of little blades. Walking across a dirty carpet grinds sharp dirt particles against the yarn, making tiny nicks in the fibres. That dulls the sheen, which is why high-traffic areas appear duller than the rest of the carpet. Over time, grinding dirt will actually wear away the fibres themselves.

Bottom line: The less dirt in your carpet, the longer it will last. A good rule of thumb is to vacuum your carpet once a week. High-traffic areas will require more frequent vacuuming.

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