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Super Handyman: Keep your knickknacks safe while vacuuming dust

I’m certainly not a clean freak, but because of my allergies I do try to keep the dust to a minimum. When I need to vacuum an area that has a lot of small pieces that might be sucked up along with the dust and I don’t want to empty the area to clean out the dust, I slip a scrap of netting over the vacuum nozzle. It will get the dust, but nothing else. This works great for drawers, toolboxes, desks and craft areas.


Q: I have a wooden toilet seat that has a crack in it. I want to know if there is a way to fix it. – J.B.

A: If the crack is in the lid, then you can glue and clamp it to put it back together. But if the seat is the part that is cracked, then you are better off just replacing it. It probably won’t take the pressure of someone sitting on it for very long.

Tips from readers

I’ve used the powdered carpet fresheners for years. I love the ease with which they work to control odors and how they leave the carpet with a nice smell. My husband, however, thinks the smell is way too strong. I decided to compromise, and what I came up with was to mix the scented carpet powder half and half with plain baking soda. This does a good job for me, and my husband thinks it’s OK, too. I am probably saving a ton of money, too. – H.S.


I like wallpaper. I have papered almost every wall in our house at one time or another. I’ve learned a lot of tricks, too. For example, if you are going to hang a picture on your wall and want to protect the wallpaper from getting torn or botched up, just use a very sharp knife to cut a small “V” in the paper. Then gently work the point up from the wall and pull it down enough to install the hanger. When you finally remove the hanger, you can use some paste on the “V” and press it back into place. Your hole won’t show. – G.C.


I just had to take my weed trimmer apart for the third time. I am having a lot of trouble with it and keep trying to fix it. I was lubricating the parts and, to make it fast, put them into a plastic bag with some oil in it. I closed it up and flipped it again and again to distribute the oil. Not only was it faster, but it was a whole lot less messy. – D.P.

A super hint

If your freezer is crowded and you’re afraid to open the door for fear of what will fall out, then you need to add some storage bins to organize food. Put like meals into each container so that finding what you want will be much easier. Pull out the bin, get what you need and put it back.


WD-40 is great for most lubricating, but sometimes you need a dry lube. The company also makes that in its 3-in-One Lock Dry Lube. It’s formulated especially for locks, and keeps them moving smoothly. It offers protections as well as lubrication, and unlike graphite lubrication, is clean. It dries clean and quickly, and won’t attract dirt and dust like many other lubricants. It has the typical straw attachment for small applications and is safe to use on metal, wood and plastic surfaces. Look for it at your hardware store or home center. To get additional information, go to

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