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Appliance Repair

  • For user and beginner information click Comprehensive fault finding for appliance repair
  • A very good introduction for anyone new to appliance repair but lacks specific model info.
  • For more repair orientated information go to Sears parts direct and click on diy repair help for generalised repair guides or on manuals for model specific advice. USA based
  • I have paper manuals for pre electronic Fisher and paykel washing machines. email me


  • Good how to fix sites, (more on the software side) are Computerhope and Ask Leo and I'm starting to rather like maximum pc guides for its clearly explained how tos.
  • do not open your laptop if it is under warranty - you may lose it
  • The laptop repair guides at inside my laptop are clear lucid and detailed.
  • The Toshiba laptop repair guide at irisvista is also clear lucid and detailed.
  • Toshiba Satellite Pro broken hinges are normally caused by the plastic around the hinges breaking on the base. Build up the base around where the hinges were once attached with epoxy part no. ES-037(see pic) then drill thru and case and attach hinges to base with 3mm bolts and nuts. Not for beginners, practice on throwaway laptop first.
  • good model specific guides at Ifixit for hundreds of electronic devices including laptops and iphones

Chainsaw sharpening

Undoing stuck bolts

ring spanner welded to subaru rocker cover bolt as new and lead ground off socket pic of rounded nut home made spanner

Car bolts

  • use the gas - I've never founnd anything that frees up bolts as much as a quick blast of heat with an oxy acetylene torch
  • If the spanner keeps slipping weld the ring spanner to the bolt. Use a Mig to reduce heat.The pic is a 10mm ring spanner welded to the head of a subaru rocker cover bolt. The heat from the mig welder actually loosened the bolt
  • If you are trying to free a plug in an engine block heat the plug not the area around the plug.It doesn't make sense but it works Heating the block does not.
  • for shear grunt the 3/4 impact gun works a treat, including on crankshaft pulley bolts
  • use 6 sided spanner not a 12 point. Use this chart to work out which spanner is the next up or down in size. eg a 15/16 AF spanner is 0.19mm smaller than a 24 mm one.
  • grind the lead off the socket or spanner. At the bottom of a socket or ring spanner is a little taper. Also the bottom of a socket can stretch a little. By grinding down the base the socket will have a little more grip particually on a thin nut ot bolt head.
  • use a nut splitter or break the nut or carefully cut the nut with a cutting tool
  • Hammer on a smaller socket
  • vicegrips
  • It is my opinion that I have never had any help from CRC or WD40 and I have been doing it for 40 years. Others differ.
  • Many crankshaft pully bolts can be loosened by putting a socket and power bar on the crankshaft bolt, turning the motor until the power bar is against something solid (perhaps the ground), protecting anything that may get broken if things "fly" and turning the starter. Don't try it on a honda though, the motors turn in the wrong direction for loosening the bolt. (Anti clockwise looking at the crankshaft pulley)

When the bolt breaks

  • try special tool no 984 If you don't like the price you can make a substitute on the lathe
  • try drilling with a left hand drill. It drills turning anticlockwise. Sometimes they will catch the bolt and spin it out
  • don't over tighten an easyout they break and then your in deep shit


  • use an impact screw driver
  • posidrive and phillips screws do not take the same screwdriver. Try another screw driver - find one that fits well.
  • no 2 philips screws can be hard. learn the difference between posidrive and phillips. I've found a koken no2 impact bit the best and longest lasting. Get a long one and make yourself a screw driver you will always love.
  • You can put a ruber band over the screw head and push it into the slot to get a better grip
  • You can find the Grabit and Screw Grab Gel on Amazon.
  • Use a dremel to cut a new screw slot
  • superglue the screw driver to the hole
excellent mig welding guide

ignore below here

Getting Rid of a Stump 1

  • drill holes in top of stump
  • fill with dirty water -preferably non chlorinated
  • Place a container around the stump
  • fill with compost,soak with water and plant
  • the stump will slowly rot away
  • some woods rot slowly


  • ----------------------------------metal pipes, one each side of the "break".
  • Have a bucket with cold water ready in case of burns. Thermostats fail or can be set too high by clowns so the water can be very very hot.
  • Wear non-slip shoes on the roof. Never go on a damp corrogated iron roof.
  • Wash your hands. Hot water cylinders can run at a nice temperature to breed germs. Do NOT work on plumbing if you have hepatitus or any other contagious disease.
  • If you block off the valve or pipe that relieves the pressure to a hot water cylinder AND if the water heats above boiling point IT EXPLODES LIKE A BOMB. AS the pressure rises, the boiling point of the water rises and produces superheated steam. Click here to see the hotwater cylinder explode However this is very unlikely to happen unless you are very stupid.
  • Do not use a Neefa (or many other)relief valve with wetbacks. Vent directly on to the roof.

How it all Works 4

The pressure reduction valve reduces mains pressure (the pressure in the pipe in the road) to a pressure that the hot water cylinder can safely contain. As a starting point the cylinder fills up with cold water. As the water in the cylinder heats up it expands which increases the pressure. If the pressure is not relieved by someone turning on a tap or a leak, the pressure relief valve on the outlet side of the cylinder will open and the water flows into the overflow pipe and probably onto the roof. In these circumstances its perfectly ok for the overflow pipe to discharge water. NB some cylinders do not have a relief valve, just a pipe through the roof.

Once the thermostat turns off The water is no longer expanding and no water should discharge from the overflow pipe.

Tricks of the trade 6

  • the mains pressure varies, so if you're adjusting the pressure at a busy time (eg at 6pm in the evening) wind the pressure back another half turn or otherwise you may find it will start leaking again
  • often the dilema is to keep the shower pressure high enough with out having an overflow problem. Remember many shower mixers have an adjustment behind the face plate. Nip down to your friendly plumbers merchant and ask if u can have a set of instructions out of the box of a new one. Most mixers are bought by plumbers who have already read them many times before
  • my friend Shelley has repaired over 100 leaking hot water cylinder overflows and has never had to replace the whole valveDon't let a plumber that wants a big mark up on parts convince you otherwise. (but remember that maybe, one day, there maybe be an exception to this .


Click here for more info on plumbing valves

In older houses the wiring is ususally not thick enough to use a 3 kilowatt element - use a 2 kw one and If your draining a hot water cylinder leave the hot tap turned on. Otherwise you can collapse the cylinder.

keyboard black keys on grey no good