Manufacturers are happy to tell you how to do it

Home Work

August 16, 1998|By Karol V. Menzie and Ron Nodine

SOMETIMES the hardest part of getting started on a new home improvement project is gathering enough information on how to go about it.

Most manufacturers of home improvement products are happy to help out with brochures you can send for. (Most also have Web sites, but that doesn't help if you don't have access to a computer.)

Here are some free brochures we've heard about recently:

* From Benjamin Moore, the paint people: booklets on "How to Paint the Interior of Your Home" and "How to Paint the Outside of Your Home." Both give tips on preparation (which is a huge part of the process -- no paint job can be effective without the careful, often tedious process of preparation), on applicators, on priming and on painting techniques. The booklets are available at Benjamin Moore dealers. For the dealer nearest you, call 800-826-2623. (Or you can check

* From Formby's, the furniture-refinishing outfit: a 16-page booklet on "Simple Refinishing Ideas" with tips on finding "buried treasure" at antique and secondhand stores, yard sales and in classifieds; checking out potential purchases; and on products and projects. Copies are available through September at paint, hardware and home improvement centers, or write "Simple Refinishing Ideas" Offer, P.O. Box 1295, Grand Rapids, Minn. 55745-1295.

* From Roebic Laboratories Inc., which makes environmentally friendly, bacteria-based cleaning solutions and maintenance products for plumbing, agricultural and commercial restaurant use: "Plumb Smart," a 12-page booklet that explains how different types of home plumbing and septic systems work, and how to treat them to reduce odor and problems. Write: Roebic Laboratories, P.O. Box 927, Orange, Conn. 06477.

Ron Nodine is owner of American Renovator Inc., a Baltimore design-build remodeling firm, and president of the Remodelors Council of the Home Builders Association of Maryland. Karol Menzie is a feature writer for The Sun.

If you have questions, tips or experiences to share about working on houses, e-mail Ron at or Karol at Or write c/o HOME WORK, The Sun, N. Calvert St., Baltimore, Md. 21278.

Pub Date: 8/16/98

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