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All home improvements don't require a contractor. Installing a smoke detector, painting a room, and unclogging a sink are all home improvements. In fact, doing the job yourself is often cheaper and always more rewarding. There's no mystery to home repair. The most important tool you need to make home repairs is know-how-to fix the problem at hand and to buy the other tools and hardware you'll need! Home Improvement For Dummies is a whole-house repair manual for everyone from fledgling do-it-yourselfers to seasoned handymen and women. This anybody-can-do-it approach will help you with a repair that needs fixing right away or get you started on a project you've been planning. This book is for you if you need advice on these topics and more:* Painting and decorating* Carpentry* Plumbing and electrical* Outside repairs* Building shelves* Tiling* InsulatingCalculate how much a repair will cost you, and know when to hire a pro. With clear illustrations that walk you, step by step, through projects, Home Improvement For Dummies helps you: * Refinish and stain wood* Repair squeaky stairs* Install floor tiles* Improve your home's energy efficiency* Maintain and upgrade plumbing* Install an outdoor sprinkler system* Install a ceiling fan* Maintain central air conditioning and heating Whether you just have a few pesky projects you want to fix quickly or you want to become a home-improvement expert, this easy-to-follow guide gives you everything you will ever need to know. A helpful appendix is packed with online resources that let you network with other do-it-yourselfers.