This past year has been hard on family budgets, while at the same time we are staying home more. Our furniture may be looking worn-out and dingy but, when we can’t afford new furniture, what can we do? Many homeowners, or even renters, are deciding to repair their furniture to make it look new again. Some projects turn out very well and some are failures. Part of the way to succeed with making furniture repairs is to know what projects are doable and which ones are lost causes. If a piece of furniture is beyond your ability to do repairs, it is time to replace it.
Getting Rid of Unrepairable Furniture and Other Refuse
Perhaps the first step in updating your home so it is more enjoyable to spend time in is to do a good house cleaning. Make three groups of items:
- The things that need to be disposed of. These items are wasting your home space. Call a Discount Dumpster Rental for help hauling them away.
- The things that need to be repaired or updated need to be removed from the room and put in the place they will be repaired. This could be the garage or a basement workroom. Many repairs need spaces with ventilation.
- The items that are just fine with a little cleaning or polishing. Clean these items up and put them back in the room. Then, make a list of additional furniture pieces you need. These pieces can be purchased at furniture stores, discount stores, or clearance stores. They can also be found at second-hand stores or at yard sales in season. You can look for furniture discounted with small areas of damage that you can then repair to save money.
Getting Ready to Repair Furniture
Before you start with furniture repair projects, do yourself a favor and assemble a furniture repair kit. This will include:
- Hide glue and other types of glue along with a glue brush; include epoxy glue and syringe and high-pressure glue injector here.
- Clamps dedicated to fine furniture repair
- Hammers including a dead blow mallet
- A collection of screwdrivers, pliers, and other woodworking tools
- A collection of the correct type of screws or bolts for furniture. Do not plan on tightening joints with nails.
- A collection of fine sandpapers and files
- Cloths for cleaning, getting rid of dust, etc.
- A collection of upholstery tools such as scissors, clamps, staples and staple guns, and other equipment as per project
- Wood filler
It helps to keep these tools together in one safe place so they are always available without a long search. It is not on the list, but one of the main furniture repair tools is a good how-to furniture repair book or two. You might need a separate upholstery repair book. There are also tutorials online for those who prefer that.
Common Furniture Repair Needs
Common things that need repair for furniture include loose screws, loose joints, animal bite marks or other gouges, drawers that stick or are broken, worn or scuffed finish, loose or missing veneer, damaged or stained upholstery, chipped wood, deep scratches, and more. Some damage can not be fixed and some are very easy to fix. Get to know the difference.
A lot of stained furniture pieces can be patched up, sanded, and painted to look new. Small defects in stained wood furniture can be carefully repaired to be almost invisible. A chair or sofa with stained upholstery can have a slipcover made to look fresh and new. Ambitious crafters or DIYers can take the old upholstery off and use it as a pattern to cut new upholstery and reupholster the piece to look like new.
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