QUESTION: Last year, my sliding glass door stopped sliding! The repairman said the roller was broken and he could not locate the company or an interchangeable part. He said the whole thing might have to be replaced.
It seems that a few months ago you mentioned the name and telephone number of a company that has thousands of replacement parts (this one is American, I think).
Will you please tell me once again how I might be able to make contact with this company so that I can replace my broken roller? The repairman lost the broken roller so I don't have something to have a part made from. Before you know it, it will be hot again, and I need to have that door working!
ANSWER: Ah yes, the case of the sliding glass door that won't slide. A familiar tale to those of us that deal with crime around the house. That is to say that it's a crime that your door isn't operating properly. Fear not, you have come to the right place. We'll surely get you and your sliding door on the right track!
What do you want first: the good news or the bad news? The good news is that The Blaine Window Company of Hagerstown, Md., boasts an inventory of more than 20,000 replacement parts for almost any aluminum frame window or sliding glass door. And, if you send them $2, they'll send you a copy of their catalogue. Not a bad thing to have if you have a home that is surrounded by windows and doors with aluminum frames.
The bad news is that the folks at Blaine have a minimum order amount of $25, which means the inexpensive do-it-yourself roller-repair project that you originally estimated at about $5 (labor and material) just got blown out of the water.
Still, it's significantly less than the cost associated with the full removal and replacement of the existing door. (We call this our "glass-is-half-full" philosophy).
We suggest that you first attempt to find a replacement roller at your local hardware store or home improvement center. You'd be surprised at the broad inventory of repair or replacement parts that many of these stores have on hand.
Finally, most sliding glass doors that we are familiar with have more than one roller. So, just because your repairman lost one of the rollers doesn't mean that you don't have something to take into the store to use as a comparison. Simply remove the remaining roller.
A final note: You may find that your sliding door is hard to operate without rollers so hurry back from the hardware store.
Insulation Helps to Silence Dishwasher
Q: I'm shopping for a new dishwasher and want a recommendation on which one I can rely on for the most quiet operation.
A: According to Consumer Reports, Kitchen Aid and Whirlpool top the list for quiet operation, but we don't recommend that you stop there. Add extra insulation as part of the installation of your new work saver.
You'll need a can of 3M spray adhesive, and a small roll of 1-inch spun glass insulation (your local heat and air-conditioning contractor will be your best bet in locating the small amount of materials that you'll need). Follow the instructions on the can of adhesive carefully to achieve a lasting bond. Apply as many layers of insulation to the machine as possible, and yet still allow it to fit into the cabinet opening.
An additional layer applied to the inside surfaces of the cavity in the cabinetry where the dishwasher fits into is also recommended. Consumer Reports Books publishes a handy reference called Guide to Appliances, which may help you to get your money's worth when purchasing most appliances.
Ceramic Tile Sealer Maintains Floor Shine
Q: I'm writing you to ask if you could tell me what I can use on my ceramic tile kitchen floor to keep it bright and shiny looking. I have used vinegar and water, ammonia, and Spic & Span. It keeps the floor clean but not shiny. Any suggestions?
A: You have 50% of the project down pat--that's the cleaning. The second half and equally important phase is the sealing of the fresh and clean surface. This is where many of our "weekend warriors" make a mistake. Many of them believe that the grout is the only portion of the tile installation that needs to be sealed. On the contrary, you should seal the entire surface, grout and tile. In addition to protecting your grout from staining, it will lend itself to a long-lasting finish that will enhance the beauty of the ceramic tile.
We recommend that you make a trip to your local hardware store or home improvement center and pick up a container of ceramic tile sealer. There are many of these products on the market under a variety of labels. To get the most for your money we suggest that you purchase a sealer that contains acrylic and silicone resins.
This is a super Saturday morning project that is guaranteed to be well worth the investment!
Check Panes for Label on Tempered Glass