Cleaning Woodwork and Caulking

Hi Everyone!  What a busy but wonderful weekend!  B and I got to spend some quality time, a lot of which was spent chugging away at the bathroom, but it was just wonderful.  Today we worked the Nursery at Church, had brunch with some friends at a fabulous BBQ restaurant, and then celebrated the announcement of B’s soon to be nephew with his family.  What a whirlwind of a weekend!

Here’s an update on some of the progress I’ve made in the bathroom.  First on the agenda was cleaning up the woodwork, that didn’t need a lot of patching.  If you remember from the other day I used TSP, which was a recommendation from the guys at Home Depot.  I donned my rubber gloves and tackled the rest of the baseboards, and the door frame.  Here are a couple before and afters:

Dirty, dirty wood:

A little TSP later, and it practically looks like I put a fresh coat of primer on!

The stuff works wonders!  And I’m psyched that most of the baseboards and door frame are in good enough shape that I don’t need to do much patching.  Woot!

Next on the bathroom list was to caulk some of the seams.  Aka spots like this:

 Off to Lowe’s this time, I checked in with the guys there for their recommendation on caulk for the bathroom, I knew I wanted something paintable, so that when it’s time to paint I know it will blend in alright.  This is what they suggested:

 I then grabbed a caulking gun my dad had in the basement, and inserted the bottle:

 Follow the directions on the bottle, but this is really easy to do!  I then snipped the top of the tip off at an angle, there are tiny numbers printed on the tip, so you know where to cut, depending on how big the crack you are trying to seal.

 I then grabbed a bucket of soapy warm water, a sponge, and some paper towels, and was ready to go!

The first thing you want to do is twist the end of the gun tight, squeeze the trigger, and apply caulk to your crack.  I worked in about 2 feet patches.  Once I had applied 2 feet of caulk, I loosened the gun so that none would leak out, used a paper towel to squish the caulk into place, and then went back over with the wet sponge to wipe away the excess.  The nice part is that the caulk is easy to clean up with a little soap and water.  How easy is that?!

Here are a couple spots I patched, gap on the left, caulked on the right:

 And here is what the seam looks like, so you can see what it looks like caulked and uncaulked (the area on the right has the seam of caulk already applied):

Much cleaner!  The next tricky area was caulking around the sink.  I applied painters tape, applied the caulk, wiped off the excess with the wet sponge, and then pulled off the painters tape before the caulk dried, to keep a nice straight line:

 This picture shows how much better the seam looks once caulk is applied, as opposed to the left corner that hasn’t been caulked yet:

I’m hoping to be back tomorrow with an update on patching the walls!  Can’t wait for this project to be done!!  Have a great week everyone!

Simply Living

Tackling the Wood Work

Oh lordy, this is only the beginning! As you saw in my last post, I started to tackle my ugly bathroom.  Now that all the walls are de-wall papered and cleaned, it was time to start patch work.  I decided to tackle the window sills first.

I started this process by using a small putty knife to chip away at the paint that was already flaking off

That left me with huge spots of bare wood, and the rest was still covered in grimy old paint:

Now I had to decide where to go from here.  I could just clean it up and cover in a couple coats of primer, but I was afraid that would look bumpy and rough, especially in the spots where it was down to the bare wood.  My next option was to sand everything down, but that would all have to be done manually since there were so many small and awkward areas…no thanks.  Or there are paint strippers.  But I was really hesitant about this one since the best strippers are heavily chemical based, and I would be working inside a tiny bathroom with only the one window for ventilation.

So off I went to my local home depot and discussed with the men who actually know what their doing!  Home I came with a couple ideas.  First step was a spray on TSP.  This not only helps clean off all the grime, but it de-glosses the paint, which helps new paint or agents stick better.

 Here I am, ready to go!  I couldn’t find my goggles…so stunner shades would have to do 🙂  This is odor less, but till chemical based, so wear the gloves and glasses! oh…and clean the mirror…duh.

The process is really easy…spray on, wait a few minutes (longer for bigger stains), and wipe off with a clean/dry cloth.  I cut up a couple of old t-shirts.  Here is how it looks with the TSP on…

And here is how it looks once it has been wiped off.  The pictures don’t show a huge difference, but the paint is no longer shiny, and all the dirt and stains wiped right off.  Nice!

The next thing the local home depot men suggested was MH Ready Patch.  This is like a spackle, that can cover large areas.

 So I grabbed my putty knife, and started spreading on a generous layer of the Ready Patch.  Smells a little bit, but not too much!  Just remember that things don’t need to be too even or smooth, because you will be sanding it down later.

For the smaller to reach areas, like where the wood connects to the wall, I just used my finger to spread the patch in place.  For areas where the bare wood was showing, or nail holes, I added a little extra patch to make things even.  Here’s what it looks like while it is drying:

The can said it took 30 minutes to dry, but I found that I had to wait much longer than that.  When you sand the dry Patch it will kick up a TON of dust, so I went off in search of the proper goggles and a mask.  No one said you would look good while working!

Here it is all sanded down!  I can’t believe how much smoother and better it looks!

 I will be going back and adding a second layer to a couple spots.  But overall it feels almost completely smooth to the touch!  It will take me a ton of time to get to all the inside pieces of wood, particularly around the glass.  And the next step will be all the baseboards and the door frame….but I’m really happy with how the window came out!

Yay for trying new things!  Off to go shower all the powder outta my hair!