Repairing Rotted Wood

I had a question this week that reminded me that rainy and colder weather will be here in the coming months. If you have any rotted wood around the home, take care of it now before the colder weather makes us tend to stay indoors and ignore what’s going on outside. If you are anything like me, I come home from work, feed the dog, and then hunker down in front of fireplace, (any temp under 60 degrees qualifies) and hibernate until warmer weather.

Minwax makes many products, but one of the best is Minwax Wood Hardener and Wood Filler. Do you have any wood surfaces outdoor that come in contact with rain, or water from a sprinkler? It might be the garage door bottom, or a front door, a porch column, deck 4 x 4, or wood step---they all are susceptible to rot. Does that mean you have to replace it? No, not at all. And that’s where Minwax comes in. Let me explain an easy way to repair rotted wood, for under $30.

Let’s say you have a porch column, and the bottom of the column has become soft from repeated exposure to water. First of all let me tell you this…..DON’T REMOVE ANY OF THE ROTTED WOOD. If the surface is painted, lightly sand the paint so you can get to the wood itself. If the surface is stained, you are fine. Using Minwax Wood Hardener and a throw-away bristle brush, apply the hardener. You will need to apply three coats. With the third coat, the surface will become shiny. This tells you that the wood has absorbed the hardener. This product has capillary action, in other words, it goes deep into the wood and stops when it hits hard wood. It’s a solvent-based product, and when it is absorbed into the wood it leaves behind solids as it dries, providing stability to the wood. And that’s why you don’t dig out the rotted wood---the existing wood gives the hardener a base. After using the hardener, fill in any void areas with Minwax Wood Filler. Since you didn’t remove any of the rotted wood, you will use much less filler. After applying the filler, you have a time where the surface is firm enough to sand. You need to sand during that window, because this filler will become like concrete after it cures. After it cures, you are ready to paint or stain. It might not match perfectly, but it’s much cheaper than having to replace a column.

Use coupon code MW1021-27 at checkout to receive 20% of your purchase of Minwax. Offer expires 10-27-2020

If you have any questions about this project, call me at the San Antonio store...210-341-1573.

Now to the email…..

Question: We have squirrels. They have taken to chewing the top of the fence pickets. What can we do to discourage this?
Answer: Let me recommend a couple of things. First trim any tree branches from dipping down to the fence. No sense making it any easier to get to the fence. I would spray the top of the fence with Messina Squirrel Stopper. You must be persistent. Squirrels are relentless. If that doesn’t discourage them (some of the brown squirrels are resistant) use Bye, Bye, Birdie (Bird-X). It’s really made for keeping bird from lighting on eves and making a mess underneath. But the squirrels won’t like it either. It’s a clear but sticky caulk, and they don’t like it on their paws. Apply it with a caulking gun and then smear it on top of the pickets.

Question: I have a chandelier and want to clean it before the holidays. I know you have mentioned a product in a previous article, but I can’t find it now. Can you help please?

Answer: The product is Hagerty Chandelier Cleaner. It’s so easy. Just spray and let drip dry. Put a protective covering underneath to catch any dripping. No polishing required. I watched one of my favorite shows on HG the other night and the host used a vinegar-based hand-made cleaner and had to polish each crystal. Should I send her an email?

Question: I get scuff marks in my white porcelain sink. What is the best way to clean?
Answer: Don’t put bleach in the sink because repeated use of bleach will dull the porcelain. Been there, done that, have the T-shirt. Use Delete Germ and a scrubby sponge. Clean, and then rinse. Work quickly.