OnTheHouse Express

. In This Issue… .
. .

. Sponsored By: .

OverTheHill Fitness
OverTheHill Fitness


Premier Care In Bathing
Premier Care In Bathing



Sun Heat
Sun Heat

Tahoe Creamery
Tahoe Creamery


. Other Ideas… .

Visit our forum for helpful tips and advice from other do-it-yourselfers! Click here.

Have an idea for our next newsletter? Send it our way!

Would you like to advertise on the On The House website or e-newsletter? Click here to tell us more!

To unsubscribe or change your subscription preferences, click here.


On The House Express
is brought to you in part by:


Grip-Tite Wrenches

Conquer Repairs that Have Rusted or Rounded Bolts

100_2212.JPGWhile working on older vehicles or equipment, we are often stopped dead in our tracks by stubborn nuts or bolts that have spent years (or even decades!) becoming locked into place. This can be painfully frustrating, time consuming, and expensive to fix if you don’t have the proper tools. To choose the proper tools, we should first examine the problem. How and why do bolts become rounded in the first place?

Indiana Carton Packaging Files 005.jpgThe first contributing factor is that rust or corrosion can increase friction, therefore preventing a fastener from spinning as it was originally manufactured to. Damage to threads can cause this same effect.

The other and less obvious factor lies in the tolerances of both the bolt head and wrench.  Nothing is ever manufactured to an exact dimension – rather, it is produced and considered acceptable if it fits within a certain range. For example, the acceptable range for a ” bolt head is 0.489” - 0.500”. Wrenches are also manufactured with tolerances; however, the minimum tolerance must be larger than the maximum tolerance for corresponding bolt heads – the same ” wrench has a typical tolerance range of 0.501 - .506. image of socket contactsTherefore, using a .506” wrench on a .489” bolt head results in a sloppy fit. This phenomenon occurs with even the most expensive wrenches available.

When torque is applied, this “sloppiness” forces the flats of the wrench, to rotate and contact the very corners of the bolt head. This creates extremely high bearing stress points on the corners of the bolt. This is easy enough to demonstrate yourself by just turning a bolt inside a wrench – you will see the wrench immediately make contact at the corners of the bolt.

Compound the problem with extra friction from rusted or damaged bolts and the sloppiness due to manufacturer’s tolerances, results in a rounded bolt head. So what tools options are there that will remove these bolts?

There are two basic types of bolt extractors for removing rounded, damaged, and rusted bolts or nuts

  1. Interference Fit(ie Bolt-Out™)
  2. Advanced Camming (ie Grip-Tite Super Sockets™)

Bolt Out1) The Interference Fit bolt remover is similar in size and shape to a socket, but has sharp spiral flutes on its inside, opposite in direction to the loosening direction.  The spiral flute opening is smaller than the corresponding size bolt head or nut to be removed, as the remover is intended to be hammered or driven on – thus the "interference fit".

As the remover is hammered on, the spiral flutes “dig into” the rounded bolt head or nut, in the opposite direction of loosening.  Once hammered on, Text Box: Sears Bolt-Out™

the user than uses an open end or box end wrench to turn the remover, and therefore remove the stuck bolt or nut.  Some examples of interference fit bolt extractors are the Sears’ Bolt-Out (shown), or Irwin’s Bolt-Grip.

Single Socket 2 adjusted DSC02862.JPG2) The Advanced Camming type looks exactly like a socket on the outside, and is used exactly like a socket – dropped over the stripped bolt head or nut (no need to hammer), and then turned by a ratchet. 

This remover works by having a set of steel cams inside the socket, which expand over and onto the flats of the bolt or nut rather than the corners.  As the socket is turned,Text Box: Grip-Tite Super Socket™ the cams are squeezed tighter and tighter into the flats of the fastener.  The more torque that is applied, the harder the cams grip the flats of the fastener.  The only advanced camming type product is Grip-Tite Super Sockets (shown).

Grip Tite vs Others w Border.jpg



Interference Fit

  • Works on all rounded fasteners – up to 100% rounded
  • Limited access - requires enough room to swing a hammer
  • If tilted when hammered on it can cause further damage to the bolt head, leaving it unremoveable
  • It can crack, or break off pieces of the fastener if not lined up straight once torque is applied
  • Does not install fasteners
  • More time consuming to use

Advanced Camming

  • Functions as a conventional socket – both for installation and removal
  • If used initially, will prevent rounding - guaranteed never to round a fastener
  • Fits into limited access areas – wherever a socket can fit with extensions
  • Quick to use – they drop on as other socket do
  • Works on most rounded fasteners- up to 85% rounded

In comparing the two types of products, both will prove effective on nearly all rounded or damaged bolts – there is rarely, if ever, a bolt rounded over the 85% threshold. It is also evident that the advanced camming product has far more uses and applications than its counterpart - including installation and removal of bolts, fitting into hard to reach areas, and functioning as a conventional socket on good bolts. It is also the only product that will actually prevent rounding from occurring in the first place.

The Carey Brothers head to Miami Florida for “Kickoff to Rebuild”


Rebuilding Together’s “Kickoff to Rebuild”  celebrates 15 years this February as a highly anticipated, NFL sanctioned charity event in the city of the Super Bowl, intended to create lasting impact by revitalizing communities in need.  

Special celebrity guests, football players, local volunteers and residents will come together to rehabilitate homes of low-income homeowners and revitalize the historic neighborhood of Coconut Grove in Miami on February 4th. After an incredible morning of community improvements, there will be a celebratory street party with food, local vendors, sponsors, and music.

Joining the Carey Brothers will be several other celebrity guests including Steve Harvey and the Steve Harvey Morning Show, Dwight Stephenson, NFL Hall of Fame member, Bill and Martin Gramatica, retired NFL kickers and Brandon Jones of the San Francisco 49ers.

Better Balance in Just One-Step


The manufacturers will try to trick you by disguising these items under different names.  For example: fractionated palm kernel oil is just another way of hiding trans fats. Where they are listed makes a big difference. The bigger portions are always listed first. These fats are alien to your body.  You cannot get rid of them. That oreo cookie you had in January, is still in your system, July of that same year.  They have been attributed to a host of problems including the formation of plaque.

Look at the label for sugar content, and try to keep it as low as possible. Again, this can be tricky. Avoid the obvious, limit your intake of sodas, juices, sweetend teas, coffees, sugary cereals and candy.

Sugar hides on ingredient labels under many different names. Look for:

  • lactose
  • fructose
  • high fructose corn syrup
  • evaporated cane juice invert syrup
  • barley malt
  • brown rice syrup
  • corn syrup
  • dextrose
  • fruit juice
  • galactose
  • glucose
  • honey
  • maltodextrin
  • maple syrup
  • molasses
  • organic cane juice sorghum
  • sucrose
  • turbinado

Sugars will create an insulin spike, that over time will make you insulin resistant. Insulin is a storage hormone.  Most of these calories will go into your reserve energy supplies, mainly your fat cells.  An important fact to remember, is that cancer cells have 6 to 10 times the number of insulin cell receptor sites as normal cells. High levels of insulin is to cancer cells like pouring gas on a fire. The most common and the one that will spike your insulin levels the highest, is high fructose corn syrup.  Try to avoid it.

Last but not least, limit your intake of processed foods.  Foods that are packaged, boxed and shrink-wrapped. The vitamin content, phytoneutrients and fiber have been removed.   They also contain preservatives, artificial colors and/or dyes. On the plus side, look for foods with high fiber content.Try to get at least 25 to 35 grams of fiber every day.

For more fitness tips and to order a copy of my ‘Living Proof’ DVD, go to www.overthehillfitness.com.

Adding Extra Cable Outlets

. Several years ago we traveled to Lisbon, Portugal, where we were amazed to find that nearly every home had a TV antenna. The skyline was dotted with masts of horizontal and vertical aluminum tubing... some low, some high, some crooked... a forest of man-made metal trees, They were everywhere. When we made this trip to the Mediterranean, we had already enjoyed cable in our own community for nearly two decades, and we had forgotten how ugly a hoard of antennas could be. Lisbon in the '90s looked exactly like a typical '60s American community. In fact, after seeing all the antennas, we were thankful that cable had come along when it did.

If you have television set, there is an excellent chance that you have cable. And if you have cable there is a likelihood that you will want to relocate or add a cable outlet at some point.

Relocating or adding a cable outlet pretty much involves the same basic principle. You can either run a length of cable to the new location from the termination box (on the outside of the house) or you can tie in to an existing outlet and go from there. However, in both cases you will need the same device to meet the task... a splitter. A splitter simply converts one input to two (or more) outputs.

Splitters come ready to use, right off the shelf:

Remove the existing cable from your television set, stereo or radio and screw that end into the splitter port marked "in." Normally, there is only one port on the "in" side of a splitter. "In" is short for "signal in," which is short for "this is the side of the splitter that receives the incoming signal from the cable company." The opposite side of the splitter is the "out" or "signal out" side. There will be two or more outlets on the "out" side of the splitter depending upon how many new connections you intend to add. You don't have to use all the outputs. For example: If you have three outputs on your splitter and wish only to connect to two units, simply leave one unused. Each output will provide the same amount of signal... one is no better than the other.

With the input connected, the next thing to do is to reconnect the unit from which you got the cable (the cable box, television, radio or stereo). That's all it takes to get your initial unit back in service again. Usually, only a very short length of cable will be needed for this task (a foot or so).

Next, you will need to connect a second length of cable from one of the other splitter outputs. This will feed a signal to the cable that will extend to the new location. In every instance, you will need cables that are fitted with female connectors at each end. You can purchase cables "ready-made" in varying lengths. This is the easiest way to get the cable you need. The advantage is that no special tools are needed to attach the connectors to the cable. The disadvantage is that standard "ready-made" cable might not be available in the exact length needed. If you wish to custom-make your own cable, keep in mind that the cutter and crimper can cost more than a complete ready-made cable.

If you intend to add lengthy extension, consider the addition of an inline amplifier. The rule of thumb with cable is: The longer the cable, the poorer the signal. If you add an extension and find that the picture isn't as good at the second location as it was at the first one, consider amplification. Sorry, but there is no distance rule of thumb when it comes to amplification. When you have a bad signal... amplify.

An amplifier will run you about $35 and requires power from a standard 110-volt outlet. Don't be concerned, because they use only a teeny-tiny amount of power. If the incoming signal from the cable company is bad to begin with, an amplifier probably won't help. We recently complained to our cable company about a bad signal and they reran the main wire to our home and within. They had changed frequencies and it was affecting transmission in some homes. Keep this in mind if the signal in your home has gotten weak.

Before you extend your cable, check with your local cable company to determine which type of cable to purchase. Although most all cable will work in most instances, various types of cables actually transmit signals differently. It doesn't hurt to check.

How to Install Wall Paneling

. Compared with painting and wallpapering, we think paneling is easier because it's a more "carpenter friendly" project. No drips, no spills, no tears. Just cut, glue and nail.

There are several reasons to choose paneling:

  • It's rich in appearance.
  • An entire room can be done in a day.
  • In many cases it has more depth and texture than do other options.
  • It is a relatively clean process.
  • It doesn't require a lot of skill, and only a few tools are needed.
Granted, there are some types of paneling that are very thick and difficult to install, but most lighter-weight types can be installed onto 8 or 9-foot-tall walls in no time. Here is how to do it the right way:
  • First, clear the room or move all the furniture to the middle.
  • Next, remove all the baseboard, door trim (casings) and crown molding. A flat pry bar and hammer make light work of this task. Remove these items carefully so that they can be reused.
  • Next, use a level or a plumb bob to draw a perfectly vertical line anywhere on the wall. If the line aligns with the stud layout within the wall, attaching the paneling with nails will be a breeze. More about that later. Measure from this line to the corners at both ends of the wall (top, center and bottom). If the three measurements are not equal, it means that the corners are crooked and that the paneling might have to be trimmed to match. Although corner trim usually covers such irregularities, there are times when trimming becomes necessary.
  • If the paneling is too tall, be sure to cut the bottom edge rather than the top. Whereas the bottom of the paneling is usually covered with baseboard, the top often is bare. Having a straight factory-cut edge at the top will provide for a perfect wall-to-ceiling connection and have your friends wondering how you made such perfect cuts.
  • The first piece of paneling on each wall is always installed the same way. Gently push the paneling against the ceiling holding one edge next to, and in exact alignment with, your vertical reference mark. Paneling nails (colored to match the paneling) eliminate the need to putty holes and are nearly invisible. Nailing into studs gives a good result, yet a glued installation often works just as well. We suggest both. If the reference line was properly centered on the stud layout, there is a good chance that every paneling joint will fall on a stud allowing full nailing at the joints. Unless there is a specific reason to the contrary, always install sheet paneling vertically. This reduces the number of joints, yielding a more professional result. If your wall height is greater than 8-feet, look into 9 or 10-foot-long sheets. With paneling, fewer joints are better.
  • Next comes baseboard and door trim. Install your door trim before beginning the baseboard. Your paneled wall is now thicker. Therefore, the door jams no longer align with the wall surface. Here you will have to furr out the door jamb by adding a piece of wood, causing the jamb to align again with the wall. With the casings in place, the baseboard can be reinstalled.
  • Finally, be sure to add "box extenders" to all switch and plug boxes. They cost only a few pennies each and can prevent a fire by "extending" the protection of the junction box to the surface of the new paneling. They are necessary. If paneling will be used to finish a basement, much attention must be given to moisture problems. Tape a piece of plastic to your basement wall during the winter. If water collects beneath the plastic, you might find it wise to contact a contractor who does waterproofing. All the plastic in the world won't keep the smell out when mildew begins to grow between the plastic and the basement walls. If no moisture results, a plastic moisture barrier is in order as the first layer, with a stud wall or furr strips (and insulation) followed by a layer of wallboard and then your layer of paneling. Paneling on furr strips over plastic will work fine, but it is not the kind of work we would do in our homes. Thicker plywood paneling can be used without the layer of wallboard that we suggest. However the wallboard does add strength and some sound-deadening value.