Ultimate Guide: Home Repair and Improvement

The definitive guide for the home owner


Ultimate Guide: Home Repair and Improvement

If you spend a few hundred thousand dollars buying a house, you shouldn't begrudge spending a couple of hundred dollars on resources that will help you maintain your investment.
I've always recommended that home owners first purchase a general guide to home repairs (along with a basic set of hand tools and a good quality lithium-ion combination power tool kit), and then, augment these resources as needed for more extensive home improvement projects.
There are quite a few home repair guides to choose from. Of those that I have looked at over the past several years, Creative Homeowner's Ultimate Guide: Home Repair and Improvement is certainly the most comprehensive. It covers 23 different topics (see the chapter listing on the right) treating just about every home repair task you're likely to encounter.
I found the contents of the book to be very well organized, with clear, concise descriptions of each topic. I was pleased to find that the text size is large enough to be easily readable - there's no need to reach for a magnifying glass to read photo captions or text in sidebars. The table of contents is detailed, making it relatively easy to find a specific topic - almost making the index redundant.
Ultimate Guide: Home Repair and Improvement provides a wealth of reference material and over 325 step-by-step projects that show you how to undertake basic household repairs. For example, you can get tips on how to plan for a remodeling job, learn about different kinds of fasteners and how they work, learn the difference between 120 and 24 volt circuits, and find out how gravity-flow toilets work. Projects cover everything from replacing the seal on a faucet, installing a timer switch, repairing damaged drywall, to installing laminate flooring. A 'table of projects' at the front of the book makes it quick and easy to find the right project.

The text is augmented by an impressive 3,300 photos and illustrations. In general I found the photos show you specifically what the text is referring to, and what it is you are expected to do. Where a photo isn't able to convey a concept clearly, the publishers use exploded or schematic illustrations.

There is a very short (4 page) Canadian Code section at the back of the book, which points out some of the discrepancies between the Canadian National Building Code and standard US building codes. There really isn't much here to impact on most of the home repairs Canadians are likely to undertake. However, the NBC should always be consulted when major renovations are being planned.
You'll also find a resource guide - a list of product suppliers. While helpful, you'll find a much wider range of resources over the internet.
Ultimate Guide: Home Repair and Improvement will be, I think, of greatest benefit to first-time home owners, or novice DIYers. Seasoned DIYers will want thematic books that treat specific topics in greater detail.

This is a Creative Homeowner Green Edition book. It means that the book has been printed in the United States (significantly reducing the carbon footprint associated with international shipping); manufactured in plants governed by environmental laws (ensuring minimal environmental degradation); and made from paper that includes post-consumer recycled fiber (conserving the natural environment, reducing landfill and saving both water and power consumption).



  • Home Emergencies
  • Safety & Security
  • Remodeling Guide
  • Tools
  • Fasteners
  • Masonry
  • Electrical
  • Plumbing
  • Insulation
  • Heating
  • Cooling
  • Ventilation
  • Floors & Stairs
  • Walls & Ceilings
  • Trimwork
  • Cabinets & Counters
  • Shelving & Storage
  • Roofing
  • Siding
  • Windows & Doors
  • Decks, Patios & Walks
  • Unfinished Spaces
  • Canadian Codes
  • Resource Guide
  • Glossary
  • Index
  • Photo Credits
  • Metric Conversion
PUBLISHER:Creative Homeowner
AVAILABLE FROM:Your local bookseller or online
FORMAT:Hardcover, 608 pages
AUTHOR:Creative Homeowner

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