Monday, 12 July 2021

Home modifications/home aids

 If you need any home modifications or specific grab bars or handrails installed then you may want to start booking tradies as soon as you can. This goes for occupational therapists that may be needed to assess a persons home. This should be done as soon as possible to give the client and tradie time to source materials.

A client of mine needed some specific grab bars and a handrail installed. They tried to get multiple occupational therapist to come out and assess their home and needs before getting a report as to what was needed. This took around 6 months to do and severely hampered the time needed to source the specific grab bars needed. Once I had the report from the OT I had around 2 weeks to source specific grab bars (which were out of stock Australia wide). There was no time to have one imported and made it very stressful for me as I didn't want to have my client without the necessary grab bars after their surgery.

With my great relationship with most of my clients they were able to postpone their surgery to accommodate the delay in sourcing the necessary materials. With the extra time, it was a huge weight lifted of my shoulders knowing I had the time to wait for the grab bars to be back in stock.

As soon a someone needs a home assessment for any modifications or additional grab bars, you should be getting it done as soon as possible so all people involved have the necessary time to source materials. With the last couple of years of covid, supply of stock has been severely hampered and extra time has been needed to source some specific items.

So with all this in mind, everything that needs to be done needs to be done in a timely manor so as to not hamper the next person in getting done what they need to do. It also allows the necessary time so they don't get stressed out worrying that the specific materials won't be on site in time before the needed install date.

Tuesday, 21 July 2020

Covid-19 and the basics of masks

As I've been running Adam's Handy Hands I've come across a lot of different clients. Some are super fit and healthy and others need a respirator to breath sometimes. To me it doesn't matter who you are, what you look like or what disability you have, I will treat you all the same and give you all the same level of service.

Now that covid-19 has hit I have done some serious research into how to prevent the spread from me to you, your family and your home. Wearing a mask is one of the simplest ways to protect myself from breathing in any germs and stopping my saliva from spreading. I also sanitise my hands before leaving my vehicle to kill any germs so I don't transfer them to your home. I also have a non-rinse sanitiser to use on any hard surface I touch, this sanitiser is proven effective against the coronavirus.

Along with the research I have done I have completed some online learning to further my knowledge on basic infection control of covid-19 and how to control the spread in the workplace (or at your home).

These two certificates cover covid-19 and how to control it. The first one is quite basic and covers basic control of the virus and is free and I encourage you to all complete it (it only takes 30mins). The second one is via Deakin Uni medical school and produced by DeakinCo. This one is more comprehensive and covers how to control covid-19 in your workplace, going through how you should wash your hands, proper wearing of your mask (putting them on and taking them off) and regular sanitising of regularly touched surfaces.

There are some basics to wearing a mask and I have seen many wearing them improperly. The basic blue mask (the one doctors wear) is a single use mask which can be used for 4hrs at a time. They are not intended to be put on and taken off more then once, once they are on that is it.

The masks with filters or N95 masks can be used for around 8hrs at a time before the valve is to moist from your breath and should be air dried. Some of these have 3 layers with the middle layer being a filter that can be changed after a couple of days use. These masks will filter out small particles and better protect you against the virus but are not intended to be washed and reused over and over.

One of the most common masks you will see are the painters dust masks. These are cheap, can be use multiple times (allow to air dry between uses) but don't really filter out any small particles. These are more designed for filtering out dust particles but can filter out the larger saliva particles that can be spread during normal talking. These ones typically have no valve so all the breath you breath out is trapped in the mask.

There is increasing popularity of fabric masks, these can come in a huge variety of styles and colours. They can have multiple layers and even a space to insert a filter. They have up to 3 layers of fabric to help stop the spread of any airborne germs from person to person. The more layers the better at stopping germs spreading from one person to another.

Lastly there are spray painters masks, these can filter out very small particles and germs with the right filters. These masks can be used over and over and have valves to allow any spend breath to be expelled into the air after going through the filter. These are the best at stopping the spread but are the most expensive and not practical for every day use. They should be limited to use where you need to see or be around someone that has a confirmed case or symptoms of covid-19.

Now I will go through the proper way to wear your mask so you give yourself every chance to not catch any covid-19 germs while out and about.

Before putting on your mask you should wash your hands (for at least 20 seconds) with soap and water (or use hand sanitiser if no running water available) so you don't contaminate you mask. This helps eliminate any chance of any bugs getting on your mask before it makes contact with your face. You should only touch it by the sides (the loops that go around your ears) as to not touch any of the part that covers your face.

After you take your mask off you should again wash your hands or use hand sanitiser as your mask will have come into contact with some airborne germs.

You should never lower your mask to sit around your chin or neck.

There will be germs that accumulate around your chin and will contaminate your mask. If you do need to take it off for any reason then it come completely off.

You should also make sure your mask has adequate pressure all around to have a good seal to provide the best possible protection. If it has a metal nose piece it should be presses tight to provide a tight seal so your breath doesn't end up fogging up your glasses.

And absolutely no peak a nose, your mask should cover your nose at all times to be effective.

I hope this information is useful to you and your family and you use it to wear a mask properly to minimise the spread. We don't want to have to go into stage 4 restrictions as that would mean almost all of us would be staying at home and my small handyman business will not be making any money.

Monday, 16 March 2020


With the coronavirus spreading all over the world I will be taking all precautions to keep myself and clients safe.

I will be hand washing with soap and water or sanitising them (if no soap and water available) before entering your home. I will be taking all precautions and I hope you will too.

I would like to be notified if you or anyone in your family has been in contact with anyone that has had symptoms or has symptoms so we can arrange to reschedule so everyone can stay safe and healthy.

You can still call me for any urgent jobs (ie: front door problems) and I will be able to take all precautions to protect myself. I have a top quality respirator, protective glasses, disposable gloves and a disposable coverall. This will enable me to get out and do you urgent job.

If you are quarantined and the job isn't urgent then it can wait. The World Health Organisation has said a full 14 days quarantined without any symptoms, so once the 14 days are over I can book you in from then, until then I won't be locking in a date.

I hope you are all keeping safe during this virus and keeping on top of your hand washing and sanitising to help limit the spread of germs. This shouldn't be limited to during this virus outbreak but all the time.

PH: 0419 393 179
Insta: adam_handy_hands

Monday, 1 April 2019

Plaster repair in Melbourne

Plaster repair in Melbourne

Plaster damage can look quite ugly and turn away potential buyers, renters or AirBNB stayers. Here is how I prepare for and repair the damage, weather it be a crack or a bigger dent.

For any repair I always try to get a sample of the paint so I can get it matched.

Lets start with the basic tools and materials you may need for plaster repairs.

  • 100mm drywall joint knife
  • 125mm drywall joint knife
  • Knife or keyhole saw
  • Plaster compound (pre-mixed multi purpose joint compound is easy to use)
  • Paper joint tape or mesh tape
  • Spare plasterboard sheet (for dents/holes)
  • Thin timber for backing of replacement plasterboard
  • Sanding block/sandpaper (not very rough)
  • Paint brush
  • Paint Roller & tray
Joint Knife

Paper tape

Mesh tape

Plaster compound

Keyhole saw

For a small crack you will need to first need to sand the area smooth so your compound has a smooth surface to start with. If the crack has a bit of a gap then you will need to use either paper joint tape or mesh tape. I use mesh tape for longer cracks as it may be house movement and it helps to hold it together, and paper tape for smaller cracks to allow something for the compound to grab to.

With paper tape you will need to apply a thin layer of compound first for the tape to adhere to. Once you have the tape on the crack you will need to smooth it out and eliminate as much of the compound under it as possible so it is smooth and as flat as possible.

Once your tape is flat and smooth you can start applying your compound to the area. Apply it in small layers and make it as smooth as possible (this will help with sanding later). Apply your compound in alternating ways, up & down, left & right. This helps eliminate the air holes and small holes that may appear in the compound. You need to apply enough compound so you can't see the tape or crack, making sure to cover around 20mm wider then the damaged area so you can feather the compound later.

Once your compound is smooth, allow this to dry for at least 24hrs so all the layers are completely dry. After 24hrs and all layers are dry you can start sanding. You need to feather your edges until you feel no bump between the repair and original wall. Sand the rest of the area so it feels as smooth as possible without sanding through to the paper tape.

Once the area is sanded to perfection you will need to get rid of the sanding dust that has accumulated on the area. I use a cheap wide paint brush to brush away all the compound dust so the paint has a clean area to stick to.

Once the area is clean from sanding dust you can paint the area. For all plaster repairs I use a paint roller of a suitable size. I paint an area larger then just the repair so the repair is less noticeable, you can even paint the entire wall.

Now for a larger dent or hole you will need to have some spare plasterboard. If the dent looks to deep and you think it will take a fair bit of compound to fill then you will need to cut out a section of damaged area.

I use a keyhole saw to cut out a square or rectangle slightly larger then the damage as it is easier to cut a replacement square or rectangle. Cut a piece of thin timber slightly wider then the hole and screw it to the original plasterboard (this will allow your replacement piece to sit flush with the existing plasterboard). Make the replacement piece as close to the hole size as possible. If the replacement piece is very close to the hole size you won't need any paper tape around the edge.

If you have a gap where the compound will sink into to easily then you will need to apply some paper tape around the edges to allow the compound to adhere properly and not sink to much into the gap.

Apply the compound as mentioned earlier and paint the area. You have now repaired your plaster damage or if this seems to complicated and you think you don't have the skill to make it perfect, fell free to call or send me a message.

It should look like the damage was never there in the first place and the wall will be like new.

PH: 0419 393 179

Thursday, 28 March 2019

Door repair and install in Melbourne

Door repair and install in Melbourne

At Adam's Handy Hands we take pride in every door, whether it be a small doggie door or a front door.

There are a few thing you need to know about doors before you start repairing them.

  1. How should a door work perfectly
  2. Roughly how old is the house/door
Once you know this you can begin to work out where the problem is. If it's hitting on the floor then you can either plane off a little from the bottom or you may be able to adjust the hinges. You can make the hinge(s) sit deeper in the frame.

If you need to plane the bottom of the door you will need to take it off the hinges. Some hinges have removable pins and some you need to remove the screws. I use an air shim to hold the door still and level to make it easier to get the hinges off.

Once the hinges are off you can lay the door down on a sheet or towel to protect it from scratches. You can now plane a little of the bottom of the door (take it easy and remove a little at a time), make sure you have a spare piece of timber at the end of the door where the plane finishes so you don't end up pulling chunks off the end.

Once you have enough planed off the end of the door you can reinstall it. You may need another person to help stable the door. I use an air shim to help level the door and push the top of the door in towards the frame.

Once it is back in place, make sure it is all working perfectly and the latch is still latching like it should be.

If the door latch isn't latching or is hard to latch there is a couple of reasons it may not be latching.

  1. If the house has shifted the latch may be hitting the striker plate a little low.
  2. Or if the door has bowed a little the latch may need to be pulled out a little.
To fix this problem you need to determine which way the latch need to go to allow the door to latch properly. You start by removing the striker plate and with a chisel you chisel out a little of the hole (whether it needs to be longer or wider).

Before reinstalling the striker plate you should check that the latch is working and hitting the hole in the middle. You can now reinstall the striker plate, you may need longer screws if you have removed a little to much of the frame.

Once the striker plate is back in place you should check that the door closes properly and perfectly. If it closes easily and the latch works perfectly then it is done.

Door and handle install.

A door install can be a simple process if you know what problems you can run into.

  • It is an old house and the frame is smaller then the new standards
  • The type of door handle to use
  • Which side the door handle goes on
  • Is it an internal or external door
Once you know these you can start to install your door.

If you have an existing door there you need to remove that first. Remove the screws from the hinges on the frame, then align it beside you new door (face to face) and mark where the hinges and latch are to line up with the new door. This will save a lot of time when installing the door.

You will need a hole saw with a 52mm and a 25mm size. Using the 52mm hole saw start drilling from one side of the door until the pilot drill bit goes all the way through. Then start from the other side, this prevents the timber around the hole from splitting as you break through the other side.

I use a door handle install kit, it makes it easier to align up the holes for the handle and latch.

Next take the 25mm hole saw and drill in from the edge of the door lined up with the centre of the hole you just drilled. Once these holes are drilled you should test fit the handle to make sure it fits perfectly.

For your hinges you need to chisel or router out just enough to recess the hinge so it sits just below the edge of the door. Have your hinge close at hand so you can test fit it to make sure you take out the right amount of timber.

Once you have all the door handle and hinges cut you can install them and get ready to install your door.

First, align your hinges with the door frame and I use an air shim to raise the door enough so the hinges line up with where the old hinges cam out of. You can use a screwdriver to raise the door or have someone else assist to hold the door steady.

You can now screw the hinge screws in to secure the door to the frame and check that the latch is in the correct position and latches correctly.

For a quality door install call Adam's Handy Hands
PH: 0419 393 179

Monday, 17 September 2018

Mould removal in plaster

How to determine if you have mould in your plaster?

If you notice any dark irregular marks on your walls or ceiling keep an eye on them and see if they grow or more appear. If you have had a water leak then it can cause the plaster to get wet and insulation to soak up the water.

With the insulation being wet this will cause the plaster to stay wet and allow the mould to grow. The affected plaster and wet insulation needs to be removed and disposed of properly. The affected plaster and insulation should be placed in a garbage bag and straight into the bin, making sure you vacuum the dust straight away.

This ceiling area started out as a small patch, about the size of your fist. The client just painted over thinking it was a stain. After a few weeks the area grew to what you can see here. The mould could have been spreading harmful spores into the are and harming your family.

Once the cause of the mould (leak) had been fixed you will need to cut out and remove all the affected plaster. Even if the plaster doesn't have mould, it can be growing underneath, so make sure you remove more plaster then you think is necessary.

This is what was on the underside of the plaster, growing mould spreading unnoticed to the eye.

The first thing to do when tackling mould is to be prepared for the worst. Wear appropriate clothing and protective gear. Long sleeves, gloves, respirator (suitable for mould) and eye protection or face shield.

This respirator is for both airborne particles (wet and dry) and dust, it keeps out all particles that are harmful to you. 

These goggles help keep all the dust and harmful mould spores out of your eyes.

If you don't have any goggles you can use some glasses to protect your eyes. This basic safety equipment is needed to keep the harmful mould off you and stop you from breathing it in.

If you have a large drop sheet or something you can use to catch the dust it would be good, but not necessary.

Once you are prepared with all your safety gear you can start to remove the plaster and insulation. Once you have removed the affected area you can proceed to patch the area.

If you don't want to take the risk and prefer to get it professionally removed then you can call Adam's Handy Hands

PH: 0419 393 179

Monday, 18 June 2018

The dangers of mould!

Mould can be very dangerous and can spread bad spores into the air. It can be very dangerous to breath in the spores. All precaution is needed to remove any mould in plaster.

Before any work commences on treating the mould you need to make sure that the source of and how it go there has been fixed. Whether it be a leaky roof or not enough ventilation in the walls, allowing the build up of water in the wall. You may not have enough ventilation in your bathroom, causing the steam to affect the ceiling.

You need to remove all the contaminated/wet plaster and any insulation that is wet. The insulation may not look contaminated but since it is wet it can still grow some mould and will affect the plaster patch.

This is a recent plaster repair I had to do that had a lot of mould. The client said they just painted over the area to try and cover the discolour. They said it just came back and that the mould has been spreading. I had to remove the entire affected section and the soaking wet insulation.

This shows how wet the plaster was and how easy it was to poke through. I could just poke my finger through without any force, meaning that the plaster could have fallen at any stage.

I had the affected area removed, which was bigger then it looked. The underside of the plaster (the side up in the roof) was very wet and starting to get mouldy. 

This shows how bad the plaster was and it was just falling away as I removed it. It's the worst I have ever seen and was in a bedroom, which is the worst as you spend about 8hrs there breathing in any mould spores in the area.

Upon further inspection I found that one of the roof tiles was cracked, so that will need to be replaced before any further work commences.

With the bad weather it had to wait until it cleared to get on the roof to replace the tile and have the plaster repaired.

This is s lesson to all that mould can be very dangerous and you should get professional help to deal with it. If left untreated or not removed completely it will most likely come back. You can't simply just paint over the area with normal paint, you need to use mould inhibiting paint or the best options is to remove the affected plaster and replace it with fresh plaster.

If you notice anything that resembles mould you should consult a professional to inspect it and have it treated properly. I can always inspect affected plaster and treat it to remove the mould. If it is in a bedroom it is best to limit the use of the room until it is treated or removed.

Always remember to be protected when doing his sort of work, wear a dust mask and rubber gloves.

PH: 0419 393 179