Questions tagged [home]

Hacks specific to the home, as opposed to a public place or place of work.

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172
votes
15answers
55k views

Where to put used-but-usable clothes (a.k.a. alternative to “The Chair”)?

We all know The Chair. The Chair where you put the clothes clean enough not to go in the laundry, but not enough to go back in the wardrobe. The Chair that looks like this: It exists because you ...
69
votes
30answers
65k views

Is there any way to kill a fly without a flyswatter?

Fact: Flies move fast. Very fast. That's why you need something that moves even faster – like a fly swatter – to kill a fly. But what if you don't have a flyswatter handy? Then, how can you catch and ...
65
votes
29answers
74k views

Tricks for opening very tight jars

What are some tricks for opening seemingly impossible-to-open glass jars, like the one pictured below? ATTEMPT: I have tried twisting as hard as I can, but clearly that hasn't worked so far. I have ...
63
votes
9answers
104k views

How can I (painlessly) add or remove keys to my key ring?

One of the most excruciating things I have to do is to add or remove some keys from a key ring. I have to dig my way into the crack of the ring with my nails, which really hurts. What else can I do ...
53
votes
11answers
77k views

How can I humidify a room without a humidifier?

It's winter, it's cold, and the heat is constantly blasting throughout my house. This is making the air very dry and uncomfortable to breathe, particularly at night when I'm trying to sleep. Are ...
50
votes
11answers
411k views

How do I find and kill a single mosquito in the middle of the night?

Many times a single mosquito will buzz in my ear at night (and bite me). I know if I kill it there won't be any others, but finding one is difficult.
42
votes
10answers
84k views

How can I effectively black out my room for sleeping, cheaply and such that I can still open the curtains during the day?

I have trouble sleeping. I'd like to make my room as dark as possible and the apartment I live in has streetlights right outside. I rent, so buying expensive curtains doesn't really seem viable. ...
40
votes
10answers
6k views

How to keep your hands warm in winter while working on a laptop?

It's really cold here nowadays so I usually have a quilt over me. My problem is that I can't get my laptop under the quilt because I won't be able to see what I'm doing. Because of this, I have to ...
33
votes
12answers
112k views

Best way to know if somebody has broken into my room without camera

I will be on leave so as a precaution I want to see if somebody has entered my room with the door being locked from outside.
31
votes
14answers
25k views

Which is the best lure to use on a mousetrap?

A mouse has appeared in my house and is apparently hiding inside the washing machine. I tried to shake it out and turn it on but the little varmint still didn't come out. So now I am going to use a ...
31
votes
17answers
107k views

How to shred papers/letters without using a shredder machine

I have a lot of letters which I would like to throw away. But for security and privacy reasons I will always tear it with my hands, one by one. It tends to get tiring with the monotonous work. So I ...
26
votes
11answers
22k views

Sleeping in a noisy environment

I recently moved into a shared house with 3 other roommates (4 if you count the couple as 2 people) on the main floor. It's also close to a busy street. At night the noise sometimes disturbs me. ...
25
votes
18answers
95k views

How to remove really old masking tape?

I have the problem that when I moved last, I moved from one end of the country to the other. When I had to vacate the flat I was living in, I didn't have a new place at my current location. Because of ...
25
votes
12answers
74k views

How to wake up without waking up other people in the same room

Every day, I need to wake up at 7, and my girlfriend has to wake up at 8. This is all part of a carefully scheduled day plan and a compromise of both standing up sometime in between is not an option. ...
24
votes
11answers
44k views

How to remove creases from my shirts without ironing?

We've all had the problem, you need that one dress shirt you own, but it is full of creases because you stuffed it all the way in the back of your closet. No way i am going to iron them, it takes way ...
24
votes
2answers
133k views

How to quickly cool off a room without a fan?

So, it may be the middle of winter in Canada, but my room is always stifling hot due to a few of things. For one, I have two computers (one of which is usually running) and those produce a lot of heat....
23
votes
12answers
46k views

What is a good way to organise and identify keys on a keyring?

I have a number of keys on my keyring - screen door, main door, garage door, some random key that I don't know where it goes, etc. When I purchased the house, the previous owner placed different ...
23
votes
12answers
13k views

I lost my closet key, how to open it?

I lost the key to a closet and I need to open it. I don't need for the lock to remain operative after the operation, so I accept "radical" solutions. The key is of this type: I have no experience of,...
23
votes
6answers
4k views

How can I avoid getting static shocks in the winter?

Some days, it feels like everything I touch gives me a shock. Car door, metal sink, even the dishwasher. What can I do to reduce static shocks?
21
votes
11answers
12k views

Stop car doors from slamming against wall inside my garage

When I park my car in the garage, the passenger side ends up being close to the wall (garage design, not parking issue). My passenger (my partner) always ends up slamming their car door against the ...
21
votes
8answers
5k views

How to remove screws with stripped heads?

As the question states, I am looking to remove a thoroughly stripped screw (the head is stripped) from a hard disk drive. My main issue is that I have no power tools available to remove the screw. How ...
20
votes
10answers
61k views

What is the best way to light a hard-to-reach candle wick without burning your finger?

What is the best way to light a candle when the wick is difficult to reach? My candle is similar to the one pictured below (large, glass, with a somewhat enclosed top), and I usually use either ...
20
votes
15answers
8k views

Stop keyboard wobble due to uneven desk

I've just acquired and finished setting up a new wooden plank computer desk. Upon finishing the new setup I naturally went to use my keyboard and noticed that the wooden planks aren't exactly flush ...
20
votes
11answers
6k views

What is the best way to get rid of steam on a mirror?

What is the best and continually way to get rid of steam and fog on a mirror? The picture below is what I mean: Image from: vivaitalianmovies.com In the past, I've tried using soap and toothpaste on ...
20
votes
2answers
677 views

How do I fold a fitted sheet?

Try as many times as I can, it always ends up a mess. I have fitted sheets that are partly elasticated (just at the corners), and elasticated all the way around the edge. I can't fold either type well....
19
votes
13answers
9k views

How can I tell if there was a power cut while I was out?

I have a battery recharger that shows no indication when the batteries are fully charged. I'm supposed to assume they are fully charged after 8 hours. If I leave the batteries to charge while I'm out ...
19
votes
5answers
2k views

How can I fill the house with a pleasant smell at the last minute?

We have some guests coming over in an hour and I'd like to have our house to have a pleasant smell when they arrive. However, we don't have any air fresheners or anything like that on hand and I have ...
19
votes
11answers
5k views

How can I clear my shower drain without drain cleaner?

While showering I notice that the drain starts to clog and water start to accumulate, but yet its not totally clogged. What can I do to prevent further clogging, while still being able to continue my ...
19
votes
7answers
2k views

How to dust Venetian blinds?

I have Venetian blinds in my home. I have a feather duster, but it does a terrible job, removing (at most) a third of the collected dust. I've also used a standard dust cloth, which does a good job, ...
17
votes
6answers
33k views

What is a permanent solution for black mold?

Mold-removing chemical products are good but the mold keeps growing back. What is an efficient permanent solution?
17
votes
6answers
269k views

How to light a candle without a lighter or a match

There are times when I need to light a candle, but I don't have a working lighter and I am out of matches. I need to create a makeshift match (or at least something to produce fire) so I can light the ...
16
votes
9answers
12k views

How to prevent accidentally pressing the power button on a computer?

I have a PC with an Antec 902 computer case and the power button is on top, and is pressed accidentally when in slight contact with hands or legs. I know you can configure the action of the power ...
16
votes
7answers
21k views

How to determine how much heating oil is left in the tank?

How to determine how much heating oil is left in a tank like this if the gauge is broken?
16
votes
8answers
5k views

What is a cost effective way to eliminate heat loss through windows?

As winter approaches in the Northern hemisphere, one can feel the cold air near interior windows. How can I reduce the amount of heat lost through windows? Essential criteria: cost must be less ...
16
votes
3answers
439 views

How can I light the very back of my fire?

My fireplace is quite deep, and I always struggle to light the back of it with a normal length match - I don't like getting sooty hands, and I worry about burning myself. The longer matches are quite ...
16
votes
10answers
13k views

How can I store my Christmas lights so that they don't get tangled?

Every year I attempt to roll up the lights for my Christmas tree in a way that will make them easy to get out the next year, but the next year, inevitably, they're all tangled up and I have to spent ...
16
votes
8answers
50k views

How can I keep my door locks from freezing during a winter storm?

My house has a detached garage and occasionally the lock gets frozen during a winter storm so that I cannot insert my key to unlock the door. I have plenty of methods to open the lock after it is ...
15
votes
5answers
58k views

How to open a door without it creaking?

The obvious answer is to oil it. But until then, is there any way to open it without the terrible creaking sound? Once in a while it has opened quietly. I think putting pressure on certain parts of ...
14
votes
5answers
89k views

How to cover nail holes effectively and inexpensively?

I am moving out of rental, and there are some nail holes in the wall. I don't want to use spackle, because it would require me to repaint the walls, and I don't want that. What is an alternate ...
14
votes
8answers
223k views

How can I affix pictures/photos to a wall cleanly without damaging the paint on the wall?

I want to surprise my mom by affixing her pictures for her coming birthday. All the photos are rectangle with dimension of 5 X 15 cm like shown below, just the bare photopaper (no frame), and the ...
14
votes
4answers
30k views

How do I pour from a mug without having it drip so much?

Pouring things from a mug or similar container almost always seem to end up in dripping; some containers fare better than others, though. A mug is terrible, most coffee pots are okay-ish, but I've ...
14
votes
7answers
5k views

How can I prevent spiders coming into my house?

I live in an apartment in a first floor, and in the last few days we noticed two spiders through the hallway. The problem is that these spiders are of a really poisonous kind called Araña de rincón (...
14
votes
9answers
44k views

Tumble-drying a fitted sheet without getting other things tangled in it

If I put a fitted sheet in the tumble dryer with other things, it will try to kidnap smaller items and twist them into one or more of its corners so that they can't come out and don't get dry. Anybody ...
13
votes
15answers
37k views

How to only make one trip when carrying groceries

Whenever I go shopping, I have to go back and forth between the car and the kitchen 4 or 5 times. I sometimes use my hands and arms to carry the bags, and I'm able to get six or seven, but usually I ...
13
votes
9answers
17k views

What can I punch?

I'd like to punch something like this to destress: I don't have one though. What general household items can I put together to allow me to do the same? Moderator note: "Mind hacks" are off-topic ...
13
votes
3answers
4k views

How to avoid bad taste in mouth while inflating balloons?

I inflated balloons recently for my child's birthday. After five balloons or so, I had bad taste in my mouth. Drinking water helped a bit, but the bad taste stayed for few hours. Any way to avoid it,...
13
votes
2answers
681 views

How can I get a mouse out the house without causing it any harm?

We recently had a tiny, and utterly adorable, little mouse in our 2nd story apartment. We eventually managed to corner it and get it into a box before releasing it back into the field, but it was hard ...
13
votes
7answers
19k views

My monitor turns off when fridge starts. How can I stop this?

I just moved to a new flat and I brought my monitor with me. My problem is that whenever the fridge starts, my monitor turns off. This is not only annoying, but I'm concerned that it could cause long-...
13
votes
4answers
11k views

A book fell in a sink full of water. How can I dry it?

How can I dry out a book that falls into a sink of water (or similar) and gets soaked? I've tried: Using a hair dryer to blow the pages back and forth until they're dry It wasn't that great an idea,...
12
votes
10answers
26k views

I'm in the rain without an umbrella, how can I get home quickly without getting too wet?

Often, a problem I encounter is that in rainy seasons the rains come really suddenly. It is really difficult to find stores or pedestrians who are kind enough to lend an umbrella to a stranger (in ...

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