How to Paint Furniture

The Handy Squad is the number one handyman service in London. We have a team of trained professionals, prepared to bring your furniture back to life, so you don’t have to get your hands dirty.

 We also offer Moving Services, Plumbing, Electrics and much more.

Whether it is an unloved chair you’ve left in your garage for years or a vintage gem you found at a car boot sale, a makeover will save you money! And remember, you’ll be left with something unique that you’ve created.

If you have been going through Pinterest and found your dream bedside table or you want to use your imagination to create something different, all you need is some paint and a piece of furniture.

We have an easy to follow guide to help you strip, sand and paint your furniture in an efficient manner.

paintaccessories

Step 1 – Think about what you want as the finished product.

You are all geared up, but still need to choose what paint to use, don’t worry. Firstly, you’ll have to think about your vision, do you want a distressed look or a glossy finish? There are many textures and shades you can opt for, so before you spend money on a paint think about the look you want to achieve.

Step 2 – To prime or not to prime?

It all depends on your furniture type and the paint you want to use. By using a primer, you are sealing the surface and providing a uniform base to apply your paint to, however there are some paints which don’t require any priming, so always check the instructions on the label before you get down to it.

burshprimer

Step 3 – Get ready to prep your surface.

Before priming or painting you’ll need to make sure your item is completely free from loose paint flakes, dirt and grease. So, give your surface a good cleaning and allow it to dry before painting. Next, sand your furniture with a medium-grit sandpaper and get all the glossy finish off, this will help the paint grip.


Step 4 – Our favourite part: painting!

To get a professional finish make sure you mask all the areas you don’t want paint to reach, that way you’ll have a clean and tidy finish. Paint thin coats and sand between each coat to achieve an even finish. You’ll need two to three coats to ensure an even coverage and after you’re done painting, make sure you give it extra protection by sealing it.

paintbrushrainbow

It doesn’t matter what paint brush you use; however, it does matter how you use them and how you take care of them. (Don’t worry, we have another article explaining all you need to know!)

If all this work turns out to be too much for your hands, our Squad of painters and decorators will lend you one of theirs.

How To Fill Cracks In Walls

How to fill cracks in walls

The Handy Squad is the number one handyman service in London. We have a team of professional painters and decorators who will take on anything from a small paint touch-up to repainting your house from top to bottom.

We also offer Electrician services, Carpentry, Plumbing and much more.

As a house settles it is very common for small cracks to open in the plaster, however it is an eyesore that no one wants in their house.

You will only need simple tools and materials from your local home improvement store to make your cracked walls to smooth, and aesthetically pleasing once again.

We have an easy to follow guide to help you fill cracks in your walls with ease.


putty-knife-applying-spackle

Step 1 – Start by scraping up any loose plaster from the crack with a filling knife.

Next, use a small wet paintbrush to dampen the crack. For deep cracks fill with screwed-up newspaper and for larger holes you might need to build up several thin coats of filler.

Step 2 – Load some filler onto a filling knife.

Draw it across the hole, until the filler comes just over the surface. Leave it to dry. Avoid overfilling to minimize sanding.

Step 3 – Sand the newly filled area.

Once the filler has dried completely, no matter what some labels say about not having to sand your wall after the filling – for a professional finish you ultimately will have to do this. You’ll have to sand between coats if there’s any excess filler. After the final coat, use fine-grit sand paper to ensure a level and smooth finish.

Small cracks often appear in plaster walls and ceilings, usually these are nothing to worry about. However, some cracks might indicate something more serious. If you need an extra hand, don’t hesitate to contact one of our professionals.

If you are prepping your walls for decoration, refer to the manufacturer’s instructions to check how long your filler should be left to dry before painting.

Never forget safety, whenever you’re sanding, wear a dust mask and ensure the area is well ventilated by opening doors and windows.

 

How to Prepare a Wall For Painting

Whether you want a complete home makeover or just want to paint a wall, it’s crucial to oversee an effective planning process to achieve the strong look you desire.

A change is as good as a rest and sprucing up a room can really change how you feel about it.

Taking the time to make sure you have prepared your workspace in a methodical fashion will give you the right start to finish the job in an easy and practical environment.

So here is our easy to follow guide on how to prepare a wall for painting.

paint3

 

Step 1 – Ensure you have the correct materials and equipment

Painting jobs often require a multitude of different materials and equipment. You need to ensure you have all the essentials in order to conduct each part of the job effectively.

You firstly need to set up the room with preparatory equipment. This includes masking tape, for the concealment of wall edges and dust sheets for pieces of furniture that may incur paint splatters.

Once you have prepared your room, you will then require the necessary tools to carry out the painting.

Using quality brushes and trays is an obvious start, but people often forget about safety clothing such as dust masks and rubber gloves.

paint2

 

Step 2 – Clear your room

Once you have all the necessary equipment in place for decorating, you need to ensure that your room has been cleared appropriately.

Large scale items need to be placed in the centre of the room, where they won’t be able to cause any obstruction, whereas small pieces of furniture should be removed completely.

Hardware and appliances also need to be considered. Where possible, devices that can be unscrewed or pulled apart should also be taken out of the room.

Step 3 –  Clean the walls

Having clean walls will maximise the level of quality you achieve with any decorating job. It’s important to tackle any scuffs, marks or dents, to reduce the likelihood of additional coating.

You need to thoroughly dust the entire room from top to bottom. There should be no grease or dirt anywhere, otherwise the painting job will become needlessly harder.

You can use a sugar soap mixture to strengthen the smoothness of walls and help alleviate any uneven areas.

It could be a good idea to replace old or worn out electrics during this phase when your room is clear, as replacing sockets or light switches might damage your new pristine surfaces. We always recommend using a qualified electrician.

Conducting a painting job can also be simplified by, The Handy Squad. We are the premier decorating service in London with a rafter of professional decorators ready to tackle any job.

How to Relocate Your Assets Safely and Securely

If you’re looking to move to a new accommodation, you’re probably already aware of how gruelling the entire process can be. From setting up viewings and down payments to packing boxes and organising transportation, moving to a new house can be an exhaustive and stressful time for even the most hardened globetrotter.

That’s why at Handy Squad we strive to lighten the load by offering a robust selection of Moving Services to facilitate your big transfer, so you can focus on making sure you and your family have everything you need for the journey ahead.

56744575

Of course, some moves may require the services of a professional London handyman, who can visit you before the move to help with various installation and dismantling tasks. Handy Squad has you covered here, and any other jobs you need completing can be arranged as well.

Utilising ‘Lift & Load London’, one of the premier moving companies in the capital, Handy Squad are able to deliver efficient results and a friendly, punctual service that’ll get you where you need to go – whether that’s across the street or deep in the heart of Europe. Regardless of where you’re going, both Handy Squad and Lift & Load London go to great lengths to ensure your home’s assets are moved carefully and deliberately.

Full Service Moving Company (919) 205-8028We also offer a dedicated Lifting and Shifting service which can help move the trickier bits and pieces around your home. From awkwardly shaped furniture to heavy white kitchen appliances, we can assist with internal office moving, packing and unloading, delivery assistance, or simply moving around the house. After all, not everyone who requires our services is moving to a new home.

754756

For those who are only interested in a Man & Van feature, Handy Squad can support you there as well – our Mini Moving service specialises in lighter loads, and every item transported will be treated with the care it deserves. Our friendly, efficient professionals can transfer all kinds of cargo from A to B, so don’t hesitate to enquire if you’re uncertain.

Lift & Load London also offers a Specialist Lifting service, which can assist with all sorts of clearance and disposal tasks. Whether in your own home or an office setting, Handy Squad can organise for your old furniture, devices and appliances to be safely removed and taken away, and can even visit you on the same day if the job demands a swift execution.

Finally, Handy Squad and Lift & Load London are proud to present our UK Removals service, which handles packing, moving and storage across the entire United Kingdom. Available to households, businesses, charities, students and more, we’ll ensure that your belongings reach your new destination on time and in perfect condition, so you can have peace of mind.

You’re always in good hands with Handy Squad, so if you’d like to request our services, feel free to give us a call on 08000 12 12 12. Alternatively, you can use our online booking system.

Improve The Sale-ability And Rental Desirability Of Your Property

4250400

If you’re looking to sell your house or your tenants are coming to the end of their lease, you’re likely considering all the last-minute improvements you can make in order to raise the value of your home, or sustain its desirability for the next set of occupants.

However, investing in significant renovations can end up being a huge waste of time and money, since the returns rarely justify any developments made.

Instead of redesigning your home in preparation for its new residents, estate agents often recommend that a few simple changes to the property can make all the difference. As long as you ensure that your home looks its absolute best, then what you already have will be plenty.

Even the most house-proud of residents will inevitably see some wear and tear in their home after several years of living there. From carpet stains to cracks in the paint, tattered skirting boards to flickering lights, surface level signs of depreciation are the first things an agent will notice when valuing your property – thankfully, they’re also the easiest problems to fix!

That’s why Handy Squad is proud to present a brand new service: Home Makeover. This are purposed with breathing life back into your home in time for a viewing, whether you’re the owner looking to sell for the highest price possible, or a landlord/landlady aiming to revitalise your home before renting it out once more.

Handy Squad’s highly trained handymen can help with those restorations in a timely and proficient manner; if you have a grimy patio, our Jet Washing service will spruce it up in a flash. If any floor tiles are broken, our premier Tiling service can fix up your floors in no time, and if your pipes have seen better days, we also offer a comprehensive set of Plumbing services. No matter its current condition, our handymen can breathe life into your home and restore it to the state it was in when you first moved in, or better!

For more information on how Handy Squad can make your agent speechless, give us a call on:  0800-0 12 12 12.

Alternatively, feel free to fill out our online booking form for a speedy response on an appointment that suits you.

Home Remodeling Contractor

How to Fit a Toilet

Introduction

Replacing your old toilet isn’t a particularly gruelling task; it’s as simple as connecting it to an existing branch of the soil pipe. If you want a new toilet in another part of your home, however, it’s best to consult a professional Handy Squad plumber.

Your plumber can connect your new toilet to the main soil pipe, and even install a dual flush toilet mechanism for more efficient water usage.
Close-coupled cisterns are a popular contemporary design easily distinguished by the way they’re positioned – directly on top of the pan.

Because there is a style of toilet for virtually every kind of interior, we encourage you to take note of your new toilet’s condition before removing your old fittings. The worst time to notice a flaw or lack of components is when your bathroom is out of commission, after all. If your toilet needs repairing it’s best to call Handy Squad, as this is not an ideal DIY task. The same applies for toilet blockages.

If you’re just looking to change the seat, this is easily accomplished without affecting the rest of the toilet. Which seat you choose is up to you, but selecting one that matches your toilet is recommended. Alternatively, certain contrasting designs can be rather tasteful – wood-effect seats on plain white pans, for example.

Before you drill any holes in your bathroom walls or floor, we recommend the use of an electronic detector to sniff out any cables and pipes that are hidden from view. The last thing you want is a flooded bathroom when you’re attempting to fit a new toilet.

How to Fit a Close-Coupled Toilet

  •  First, assemble the flush mechanism and insert it as per the manufacturer’s directions, ensuring the rubber sealing rings are applied where required.
  •  Position the large rubber gasket inside the pan’s flush entrance.
  •  Making use of the rubber and large metal washers included, feed the long fixing bolts into the holes in the cistern.
  •  Push the threaded segment of the flush mechanism through the rubber gasket on the flush entrance of the pan before placing the cistern on top of the pan and securing the connecting bolts through the holes.
  •  Apply the washers provided to the connecting bolts, and tighten the wing nuts until they’re firmly secure.
  •  After ensuring there are no cables or pipes underneath the fixing points, position the toilet in place and slot the pan outlet into the flexible connector attached to the soil pipe. If this proves too troublesome, consider using a little silicone grease to slide it on. Next, drill a pilot hole in the floor at each fixing point, utilising a hammer-action drill and a few plugs if the floor is too solid.
  •  The base of the pan should have several holes that the plastic protective inserts can be pushed into, before the retaining screws are applied to hold the toilet firmly to the floor. Some cisterns may have their fixing holes in the back, which will require it to be attached to the wall via drilling and plugging. Adding rubber washers before you tighten the nuts is crucial – just remember not to tighten the washers too much.
  •  The supply pipe for the cold-water feed should be connected next, making use of a push-fit tap connector.
  •  Following the manufacturer’s directions, attach the hinge assembly to the seat.
  •  The seat can then be attached to the pan by securing it through the holes on the back using the screws included. Then simply position it until it sits correctly.

How To Use A Jet Washer

How To Use A Jet WashJet washers provide an effective method for tackling some of the more difficult cleaning duties in outdoor areas. From defacements involving gum and graffiti to natural blemishes like weeds and moss, it’s never been so easy to lift the grime from your personal property.

Before purchasing a jet washer, it’s important to choose the right model for the task at hand. As efficient and versatile as these devices are, deciding on the most suitable pressure rating and size of water flow will always produce the best results. We also encourage you to take into account the weight of the machine, whether it has wheels included, and the length of the hose and cables.

Washing your car can also be a quick, easy task. Simply reduce the pressure when targeting painted or delicate areas, and crank up the power when focusing on tough dirt to pry it loose. A variety of attachments are available to facilitate more specific jobs, as well. From detergent tanks storing car shampoo to variable brush attachments, giving your car that sparkling finish can be cheaper, faster, and more enjoyable than ever before.

For patios, driveways, walls and other surfaces, start with a high pressure blast to clear weeds, moss, algae and general muck within seconds. Follow-up with a more gentle spray to cleanse the remaining residue and you’ll finish your high maintenance cleaning in a fraction of the time.

Of course, you may find you want one of these technical wonders to grace your property no more than once or twice a year, in the hands of a trained professional. You might be short on free time, intimidated by the massive selection of products, reluctant to get hands on with unfamiliar equipment, or simply more comfortable with the idea of leaving the job to an expert.

Our jet washing specialists can give your garden such a drastic makeover, you’ll barely recognise it. We treat an array of different materials with our exclusive Garden Refresh package, restoring your outdoor furnishings to a pristine state.

For the best jet washing service in London, call The Handy Squad today for a quote on our services…

Handy Squad Is Now Serving Surrey

Handy Squad Is Now Serving SurreyFor some years Handy Squad has had most of London covered, and our handymen can be seen on their distinctive yellow scooters north London, south London, east London and west London, not to mention the City and West End. Now, though, we’re expanding into Surrey as well.

The County of Surrey

Though parts of the historic county of Surrey have been swallowed by London, a good deal of it survives. Surrey is the most affluent county in the UK — and that’s official. It has the highest GDP per capita of any county, as well as the highest number of millionaires, and a record number of major corporations have their headquarters in Surrey.

While much of the county looks to London, where many residents work in the financial sector, Surrey also has beautiful countryside. The dramatic landscape of the North Downs passes through it, including the iconic beauty spot of Box Hill, featured in Jane Austen’s Emma.

Where We Can Serve You

Handy Squad now covers a large swathe of Surrey, ranging from the historic town of Kingston, where a long line of Anglo-Saxon kings were crowned, to the site of the world’s most famous horse-race at Epsom. Further to the south and west, we also serve a number of pleasant, affluent towns such as Leatherhead and Weybridge.

In all, the areas we currently cover in Surrey are Kingston, Coombe, Claygate, Hinchley Wood, Surbiton, Norbiton, Esher, Thames Ditton, Epsom, Oxshott, Cobham, Ewell, Molesey, Weybridge, Whiteley, Leatherhead and Chertsey. We aren’t going to stop here, though, so if your area isn’t included, watch this space. Hopefully it soon will be.

What We Offer

Handy Squad will be offering our new Surrey customers the same expert, comprehensive handyman service that our London customers have come to expect. We cover decorating, carpentry, electrical work, plumbing, cleaning patios and much more.

From installing electrical circuits to hanging pictures, redecorating your home to putting up shelves, retiling your bathroom to changing light-bulbs, plastering and painting to fitting toilet seats, or installing baths and toilets to assembling flat-packs — we can do it all.

Our handymen take every job seriously and have the qualifications and experience for them all. And, even if you come up with a job we haven’t thought of, they have the flexibility to complete it successfully.

So look out for those unmissable yellow scooters in the town centres and leafy residential streets of Surrey. Even better, give us a ring on 0800-0-12 12 12, or drop us a message on our contact form.

Blinds – Pros and Cons of the Different Types [2021 Update]

Assuming you don’t want to be on show 24/7, you need some kind of covering for your windows. You might even be trying to work from home but with the sun shining on your laptop’s screen, it’s making it impossible for you to work – you’ll need some shade for your windows.

Have you just moved into a new place that had no blinds or curtains? You’ll need to find the perfect shade solution for your windows. The last thing you want is to be woken up by the sun when you are trying to sleep in on a Sunday morning.

You could choose curtains for a traditional look, though there are some rooms, such as the kitchen and bathroom, where they’re not advisable. More common these days, especially for homes with a contemporary look, is to use blinds. They’re relatively easy to fit, clean and adjust. But which of the many types of blinds are best?

The Types of Blind

There are numerous different blind designs, and they can be made of various materials. The most familiar styles include the Venetian blind, with its folding horizontal slats, or the vertical blind with slats running top to bottom. There are also roller blinds and Roman blinds, sometimes called shades, with material rolled or folded away when not in use.

Blinds with slats can be made of wood, bamboo, aluminium, plastic or stiffened fabric. The roller and Roman types are usually made of fabric but can also be made of plastic.

All of these suit certain uses, but what are the main pros and cons?

Blind Pros and Cons

Venetian blind

Pros: Easy to adjust to regulate the sunlight coming in. Can give the room a stylish, continental feel.

Cons: Not the easiest type of blind to install.

Vertical blind

Pros: Easily adjustable like the Venetian blind, but doesn’t look as good when opened.

Cons: Can break easily in the breeze if hung over an open window.

Roller blind

Pros: Easy to install and allows a pattern to match the room’s décor, as with curtains.

Cons: Can’t be adjusted like slatted blinds for an exact amount of light.

Roman blind

Pros: Allows a patterned design but can also be lined with added insulation.

Cons: Harder to clean.

Blind Materials Pros and Cons

The various materials have their pros and cons too:

Wood Blinds

Pros: Looks luxurious and stylish.

Cons: Expensive and unsuitable for kitchens and bathrooms.

Bamboo Blinds

Pros: Great for giving the room a modern and sleek look.

Cons: Even more expensive than wood.

Aluminium Blinds

Pros: Cheap and easy to keep clean. Good for commercial spaces.

Cons: Doesn’t give the most sophisticated look to a room.

Fabric Blinds

Pros: Can be patterned like curtains and lined for insulation.

Cons: Unsuitable for kitchens and bathrooms.

Plastic Blinds

Pros: Cheap and flexible. Can be used anywhere.

Cons: Can look tacky and might not last long.

If you’re a good DIYer, most blinds are fairly easy to fit yourself. A mistake can ruin more than the blind, so if you don’t feel confident hanging blinds, call the Handy Squad on 0800 0 12 12 12 or book online today.

Baby-Proofing Your Home

baby-proofing-1

From around eight months old, of not earlier, your baby will start to crawl around, and your home will become a wonderful place to explore and learn. Unfortunately, it can also become a series of accidents waiting to happen, unless you take steps to baby-proof your home. Many of these are changes of habit, from putting dangerous items out of reach to checking your smoke alarm batteries more regularly, but you can also make alterations.

Safety Gates

Most people think of stair gates when you mention baby-proofing. Your baby’s bound to be curious about the stairs, and a gate at the top and bottom will prevent access when you’re not around.

Safety gates can also keep your baby out of potentially dangerous rooms, like the kitchen, unless you’re there to supervise. Also consider having guards on the windows.

baby-proofing-2

Kitchen

The kitchen is perhaps the most fascinating and most dangerous room in the house for a baby, and you won’t be able to watch him or her all the time, especially if you’re working in there.

Besides keeping dangerous items out of the way, it’s as well to fit safety catches on the cupboards — though leave one accessible and full of safe items, to keep your baby busy. Also make sure you have covers on the cooker knobs, and consider having a lock on your bin.

Furniture

Your baby’s going to collide with furniture every so often, so it’s important to fit soft plastic covers to any sharp corners. Make sure heavy furniture, such as a bookcase, is securely fixed to the wall and that the television can’t be pulled down.

Other Hazards

Electrical sockets should be safe, but you should never underestimate a curious baby’s ingenuity, so it’s as well to fit protectors. Similarly, any hinge that could squash your baby’s fingers, e.g. on a door, an ironing board or a deckchair, should be fitted with hinge protectors. Loose rugs can be a hazard, but they’re a lot safer if you fix non-slip underlay to them.

Don’t forget the garden, either, if your baby’s likely to play out there in the summer. Even if you’re supervising closely, every hazard needs to be baby-proofed, especially if you have any kind of water feature.

Getting It Done

Most of these jobs are easy enough to do yourself, but you’ll have more peace of mind if you know they’ve been done by a professional. An experienced handyman will have baby-proofed many homes and may spot a danger you’ve missed.

If you want to know more about baby-proofing, feel free call us today on: 0800 0 12 12 12 or book online.