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Help! Many repair and maintenance questions. Greatly appreciate any advice! Answered

We spent literally thousands of dollars to remodel and upgrade our home, and now face many projects were done improperly and need to be corrected. The company is no longer in business, and I need to learn to "do it myself". My first priority is to fix broken stair treads. They are oak and are splitting at the seam. I was considering using an epoxy wood glue, and using duct tape to hold the tread together until the glue dried. Does that sound reasonable? Many thanks for any help you can provide!


Kiteman's right, clamping them would be best...

What else is wrong with the house?

There is so much I would bore you for hours. I am trying to prioritize the problems and correct as money and research allows. My next project will be to remove the floor of the shower they built, as it has started to leak into the kitchen below. It would be wonderful to have a shower again. The remodel was such a disaster that I ran out of money with a great deal of the remodel left to complete or done improperly that it will need to be redone. Hey, I have always learned the hard way!

Ging, You can strip out the shower floor tiles and do one of two things...either use a resin type epoxy and coat the shower floor but do go up about 200mm along the walls too....or Mix 4 double handlfulls of coarse salt into the cent mix and replaster the floor area. the salt will waterproof the cement mix. You can also buy a commercial waterproofing compound that you add to cement ....none of this will cost you much...just time and effort! make sure you pull the drain pipe unit up and seal it well into the cement when reinstalling... this is where they leak!

Sounds like my mothers house - built about six years ago as a turnkey, same problems with showers, all three leaked and the bath.

Same problem everywhere, badly attached drain, either the down pipe had a bad seal or it hadn't been positioned right and forced the drain up a little, breaking the seal with the shower floor/bath.

In either case it's a very easy fix...

But before you yank it all out, inspect the seal around the wall and up at the shower head, in one of them the shower itself was leaking in to the wall very slowly, in that case it just needed the fitting tightened.

There are many products for people that do their own projects. If you need to replace or repair your own shower, watch the video for a new way of building your own.

Oak is a hard wood. You need to predrill holes for nails and screws before fastening them down. The natural expansion and contraction can cause splitting if not done.

I don't know where your from but I suggest if you can to go to your local library and look for some of the great Readers Digest series of books on DIY home repair. They cover many topics that the average homeowner can do. This way you may find that some of the things you have low on the list to fix may be real easy to fix and scratch off the list. My son in-law doesn't hardly know which end of a hammer to use but at least my daughter had learned enough she can "fix" things, or know when to call dad at least.
Fixing problems that someone else was paid to do right is a real pain, but you can use it to learn things you never knew. Try to think on the bright side.

Why are they splitting (do you know?), I'm not sure what this "seam" is. Perhaps they're poor-quality wood or badly-fixed.
You may do better to remove and re-fix them. Glue is probably not a good fix, but you could fill the gaps (with a cheaper filler than epoxy).


I don't believe the treads are low quality, I believe the problem is caused by the screws being inserted along the "seams". I don't know the proper term, but the treads are oak that are laminated with boards similar to woods used for furniture. Is that better to understand? Thanks for your input. Ging

hi, I'll guess that the haven't been fixed well, but since you say they're laminate - could you post us all a few photographs?


Clamping would be better - it would be easier to tell if you could add a photo of the problem.

Thanks. I thought of that, but have no idea how to clamp a tread. I will try to upload a photo later today. I appreciate your help. Ging

That's why I asked for a photo (it would also be useful to know what is under the treads).

You may need to put screws into the wood and use them to apply pressure to the joint as it dries, or there might be other jointing methods we can suggest.