How To Join Two Pieces Of Wood At 90 degrees: A Beginner Guide

Making wood joints is considered to be the most basic technique that all woodworker, amateur and professional, have to know by heart. Different projects may come with different requirements which means it’s wise for you to learn more than one way to fabricate wood joints. In the case you want to know more about how to join two pieces of wood at 90 degrees, you come to the right places.

An Overview Of The Joints

For most of the time, wood joints are primarily used when you want to attach two wood pieces together and assemble a more complex structure. Popular joint types are relatively simple to make using woodworking fasteners but there are other designs that require precise cutting. Some advanced forms of wood joints are even capable of holding pieces of wood together with nothing more than friction.

So what kind of wood joint should you use for your woodworking project? Well, to answer this question, you have to take a good look at the requirement of the project as well as your own taste. In most of the case, there are 5 factors you should consider: Fitness, Strength, Flexibility, Appearance and Ease Of Construction. By establishing the conditions of the joint, you should be able to figure out what type to use.

Types Of Right Angle Joints

In this part, we will talk about commonly used wood joints along with their characteristics and how to make them. While making wood joints is not exactly a demanding task, you still have to take care of yourself. Wear proper clothing and put on protective accessories just to be on the safe side. If your tools seem kind of dull, don’t take chance and sharpen them first. Inspect the pieces carefully so you don’t miss leftover nail, screw, etc.

Butt Joint

In term of simplicity, nothing can beat the butt joint, it’s essentially one of the most straightforward designs in existence. If you want to make a right angle joint within the shortest amount of time possible, you definitely need to consider using this joint. All you have to do to is to join pieces of wood at their respective ends with the help of screw, nail and alike.

However, due to the potential difference in grain and exposure, you should reinforce a butt joint in any way possible. Usually, adhesives are not going to cut it so it’s recommended that you go after nails and screws. Countersink and putty are necessary to keep the nails/screws from getting loose as time goes by.

Dovetail Joint

Well appreciated for its strength and aesthetic value, the dovetail joint is a really good choice if you are sufficiently skilled at woodworking. It involves cutting a series of “pins” and “tails” on two different piece of wood before finally joining them together. After that, you only have to secure the wood pieces with adhesive, there is no need to use fasteners here.

As it possesses excellent tensile strength, people often use dovetail joints to combine parts of wooden furniture such as cabinets. Generally speaking, tight-fitting dovetail joints should last for a long time but there is no need to worry if you are unable to make a perfect joint. Due to the design, even a sloppy dovetail joint could be strong and long lasting as well.

Mortise and Tenon Joint

Mortise and tenon joint is a balanced design that proves to be strong and simple. You could use the joint to attach wood pieces end to end but it also works quite well in intersected setups. To make the joint, you have to prepare a mortise hole and a tenon tongue, both of them are rectangular. From the outside, mortise and tenon joints appear to be similar to butt joints but they actually utilize a different way to secure the connection between the pieces.

After you finished shaping the pieces, the only thing left to do is to fit the tenon tongue into the mortise hole. To lock everything in place, adhesives are the most common choice though there are certain variants of Mortise and tenon joint that employ pins or wedge.

Popular questions about wood joints in general

How to join two pieces of wood end to end

Butt joint, dovetail Joint and Mortise and Tenon joint could be used to join two pieces of wood end to end. There are also other joint designs you could try such as miter joint, dado joint, dowel joint, finger joint and so one. Once again, there is no such thing as the best joint for every project, all designs come with their own pros and cons.

How to join two pieces of wood with screws

You could use screws to reinforce wood joints whenever you want but in reality, only the butt joint requires screws to function properly. Most of the other joints could perform adequately on their own or with the help of adhesive.

How to join two pieces of plywood

For most of the time, you should be able to join two pieces of plywood in the same way as with ordinary wood.

How to join two pieces of wood with dowels

As long as the dowels are properly crafted, the task is quite simple. Pour a bit of glue into the holes on the wood pieces and insert the dowels. Camp everything together for the glue to dry and that should be it.

“How Many Watts Does A Mini Fridge Use?”: A Detailed Answer

Compact refrigerators, or mini fridges, are primarily used to store foods and drinks in dorm rooms, game rooms, home offices, garages and alike. Thanks to the fridges humble profile, they have a very limited space requirement so you could conveniently place them anywhere you see fit. Nonetheless, you are in for a surprise if you assume that mini fridges use less energy compared to standard fridges simply because they are smaller.

Want to know how many watts does a mini fridge use? Then you could find the answer right down below along with a couple of important information on the side.

What is the cost of running the average mini fridges?

Here is an interesting fact: For most the time, mini fridges actually use more electricity per cubic feet than other standard size fridges. The cost of running a full-size refrigerator is only about twice as much as a compact fridge one-quarter of its size. As a result, a 4.4-cubic-feet compact refrigerator could cost you $27 a year while a much larger 20.6-cubic- feet fridge only cost you $47 in the same time period.

There are two reasons behind this: First, there isn’t a lot of room for insulation. Second, mini fridges have considerably more area per cubic feet to accommodate food and drink which require additional electricity to keep everything cool. Of course, there are many other contributing factors too such as the unit age, the room placement, the defrost setting and so on.

In general, provided that the setting is similar, mini fridges would have lower energy efficiency compare to full-size refrigerators. Most people don’t notice the slight difference in their utility bills though because compact refrigerators often cost you well below $5 per month. To have cold snacks and beverages in your hand while watching sport or playing games could easily justify the less than ideal efficiency.

You should be able to find an eye catchy yellow and black Energy Guide Label somewhere on the fridge body. It would tell you the estimated amount of energy the refrigerator could use in a year along with its projected c cost. Products with an Energy Star rating on their label tend to consume less energy compared to other models.

The estimate electricity usage and associated cost of mini fridges from popular brands

Do remember that the cost could vary a lot in reality, depending on the local utility rates as well as well individual preferences. The products down below are simply examples, there are more products on the market for you to choose. Nonetheless, these examples should offer you a general idea of what to expect when it comes to mini fridges electricity usage and operation cost.

1.7 cubic refrigerators

  • Galanz fridge: 230 kWh/ year with a yearly cost of $28
  • Haier fridge: 200 kWh/ year with a yearly cost of $24
  • Igloo fridge: 318 kWh/ year with a yearly cost of $34

3.2/3.3 cubic refrigerators       

  • Igloo fridge: 332 kWh/ year with a yearly cost of $35
  • Haier fridge: 272 kWh/ year with a yearly cost of $31
  • Frigidaire fridge: 220 kWh/ year with a yearly cost of $26
  • Danby fridge: 266 kWh/ year with a yearly cost of $28

4.5 cubic refrigerators

  • GE fridge: 332 kWh/ year with a yearly cost of $35
  • MicroChill fridge: 259 kWh/ year with a yearly cost of $28

How many amps does a mini fridge use?

The refrigerator ampere is often listed in the manual or on the fridge front/back labels, you could even look for it online. It’s also simple to manually calculate the ampere of a mini fridge, you only need to use this formula: Amperage = Watts/Volts. For example, if you have a 120 Voltage and 240 Wattage then your mini fridge shall have an Amperage of 2.

How many watts does it take to run a refrigerator on a generator?

As a rule of thumb, the generator wattage must be 1.5 times higher than the refrigerator running wattage to start the unit. This is due to the fact that fridge requires an extra jolt of electricity to jump-start its compressor motor. Take a good look at the output rating of the generator in order to make sure it can handle the fridge electricity requirement.

How to take care of your mini fridge?

  • It’s recommended that you keep the fridge away from direct sunlight and heat sources.
  • When you first plug in the fridge, set it at a medium-cold setting
  • Don’t try to squeeze too many things into the fridge. That would leave no room for the cold air to circulate and chill the items.
  • Clean the fridge and vacuum its coil on a monthly basis to maintain an ideal performance.
  • Get rid of all perishable item if you intend to go away for a couple of months.

Conclusion

And that is most of what you should know about running mini fridges and its related issue, pretty simple to absorb, right? “How many watts does a mini fridge use?” It’s not easy to figure out the answer when you don’t know much about the fridge characteristic. But with the help of the article, you should have no trouble obtaining the wattage of any compact refrigerator you could find.

 

House Smells Musty After Rain: Causes And Solutions

Different houses often have different smells which reflect the nature and lifestyle of their occupant. Sometime, environmental factors such as the weather could exacerbate the issue and make the house atmosphere become unbearable. That is why your house could emit unpleasant odors during season change or after heavy rain.

In the usual case, there are many things that could make your house smells musty after rains along with a variety of solutions. If you are interested, this article would introduce you to several ways to deal with the odor in short term and long term. There is also a detailed guide on how to get rid of other odors as well in case you run into them in the future.

What are the causes of the musty odor?

For most the time, if you don’t clean your house regularly and thoroughly, there would be a musty odor in the house atmosphere. Old furniture and aged construction material are also prime suspects behind that detestable stench in your lovely home. At first, the odor could be limited to a section but if you fail to come up with a solution, it would envelop the house.

Here are some of the most common culprits.

Mold and mildew

Places that are constantly exposed to high humidity such pipes, roofs and alike tend to experience a moisture built up over the years. Combine with low light and stagnant air, these locations are excellent breeding grounds for mold and mildew. In many cases, the funguses could grow in a completely undetectable manner because they are shielded by the house walls.

Long after the funguses are eliminated, the odor could still linger in the atmosphere because it has penetrated the house curtains, carpets, etc.

HVAC system

As time goes by, the efficiency of the house HVAC system would slowly but surely drop. After a number of years, these arrangements could become dusty, rusty and smelly.  Hence, the HVAC ductwork could circulate a musty odor around the house interior whenever you turn on the system.

Cigarette and Cigar

Drywalls often absorb odors that they are subjected to on a day to day basis which included the smoke of cigarette and cigar. So if the house owner is a smoker, the musty odor could be retained and emitted by the house walls for years. In the usual case, smoked absorbed walls would have noticeable brown or yellow nicotine stains on them

Foods and drinks

If you don’t properly clean up spilled foods and drinks, they are going to resurface later on in the form of a nasty smell. Leftover snacks and fermented beverages could also generate a musty odor in the case you don’t store them correctly. Similar to the cigarette and cigar smoke, the kitchen walls would soak up cooking smoke and release an unpleasant smell into the atmosphere.

How to get rid of the musty smell?    

​​​​​​​​Temporary methods

An air freshener is able to mask the musty odor of the house when used due to its strong odor.  Open up all the windows and doors could provide a short-term boost to the house ventilation and push out the musty odor. However, these methods only work temporarily, it’s advised that you attempt to eliminate the source of the odor as soon as possible.

Permanent methods

Take care of moisture built up

Repair leaky pipe and cracked roof in order to avoid moisture built up, it’s often enough to prevent the growth of fungus. It’s also wise to seal exposed dirt floor using concrete so as to eliminate musty or earthy odor in hot humid weather. You could attempt to pour concrete over the area on your own or you could hire a contractor to do it for you.

Clean the air duct and update the HVAC system

During normal operation, duct and alike could accumulate inside the air duct and decrease the system efficiency as much as 40 percent in some case.  The built up also permit the growth of microbial which could lead to the circulation of the musty odor. To clean the air duct, you must have suitable equipment and you should only do it when there is no in the house.

To reduce the number of time you have to clean the air duct, you should change the filter regularly and perform maintenance periodically. If the cleaning isn’t enough to solve your odor issue, the smell probably embedded itself in the component of the HVAC system. In that case, you have to consider replacing the entire HVAC system in order to get rid of the musty odor for good.

Swap out the carpet and curtain

Take a quick sniff of the fabric in order to decide whether the musty odor is coming from these items. Unless you just replace them recently, swap out the carpet and curtain if you encounter a foul stench on them. The carpet comes in to contact with people shoes regularly so make sure that you wash it regularly.

Inspect places with high humidity

Fungus often growth where it’s wet and damp so take a good look at places with high humidity such as the bathroom. In the case you spot mold and mildew, deal with them using an acidic compound like vinegar and so on. That should be enough to eliminate the musty odor once and for all, the smell would fade away from existence in no time.

Precautions

Dehumidifier and ionizer are excellent ways to keep the house atmosphere acceptable and free of moisture at any given time. You could also place a bowl of active charcoal at strategic locations across the house to absorb unpleasant smells and sanitize the airs. Finally, it’s recommended to set up a logical cleaning scheme to make sure the odor would never visit your lovely house again.

The difference between musty and moldy odor

While the cause of the musty and moldy odor could be the same in some cases, they are not similar to each other.  Moldy odor tends to be the stronger one of the two and it indicates that without a timing response, the fungus could cause extensive structural damage. On the other hand, musty odor only means that something is wrong and that you should take a look around the house.

 Other common odor issues that you could run into.

House smells like urine after rain

In most of the cause, this is caused by a leak in the house facilities or an encapsulated crawl space. In certain situation, pet pee could get soak up by hardwood and the pee would be squeezed out when there is a rise in humidity. Therefore, you have to deal with the leakage or tear the pee soaked hardwood away to remove the urine smell.

House smells like rotten eggs when it rains

This could be caused by a loose or punctured toilet gas ring around which leak methane gas into your house. All it takes is a pin size gap or crack for the methane gas to flow into the house unopposed. Replace the ring and see if it’s enough to solve your odor issues.

Septic tank smells when it rains

After a heavy downpour, the air becomes heavy that makes it hard for the methane gas to dissipate through the vent. To solve it, run water through the house sink, bathroom, drain and shower everyone in a while. While you are at it, pour down a couple of quarts of treatment compound such as CCLS as well.

House smells like sewage after rain

A punctured sewer pipe could be the cause of the nasty smell you are experiencing. It contaminated the soil right below the house and when the rainwater saturates the ground, the smell would resurface. The best solution is here is to wait for the ground to dry and then pour a couple gallon of bleach around the house.

Basement smells like sewer when it rains

You most likely have a water trap somewhere that has dried out due to the lack of use. When the water evaporates, it allows sewer gas to pass through the drain into the room.  Dumping a few gallons of water into the drain should fix your problem.

Another potential culprit would be the cleanout plug inside the drain, remove the drain cover and see if there is a plug there.  If the plug is missing, the sewer gas could bypass the water trap go straight into the room through here. Grab a replacement plug from the local hardware store, install it and you should be able to prevent further infiltration of sewer gas.

Yard smells like sewage after rain

There are two possible causes: clogged drain field and leaky sewer pipes.  These make the septic tank sewage to come up through the ground and release horrible smell in the process. In most of the case, you should contact a professional septic company and let them take over the repair. It’s unwise to attempt to deal with the situation on your own when you are inexperienced.

Gate Valves Vs. Ball Valves: What Are The Differences?

When it comes to piping valves, there are many options available with different size and shape for you to choose. But in term of popularity, Gate valve and Ball valve are among the most commonly used valve type due to their excellent performance. Nonetheless, these valves have unique characteristics so you should not use them without proper consideration and planning beforehand.

Gate valves vs. Ball valves, it’s not easy to tell which one is the better choice, especially if you know little about them. In the case you wish to learn more about the valves and the way they work, you come to right place. Here is a comprehensive analysis of these valves along with their advantages and disadvantages in different applications.

Gate valves

What is a gate valve?

The gate valve earns its name from its internal mechanism which includes a round or rectangular wedge that serves as a stream gate. By moving the wedge up and down through an external handle, you would be able to control the liquid stream.

In the usual case, the gate valve is used to start/stop the liquid flow, it’s rarely used for stream regulating. A gate valve tends to have two ports, an outlet and an inlet. Many gate valves utilize threaded ports but flanged and soldered designs are also available.

The valve application

Due to its ability to slice through the liquid with ease, the gate valve is widely employed in the petroleum business. Household arrangements also utilize gate valves as well and the valve popularity in the area is increasing steadily. Typical gate valves are designed to be closed or opened completely so as to reduce potential friction loss.

The valve style

  • PVC Gate Valves: These valves are flexible, tough and generally affordable to the average person. This valve style is primarily used where temperature and pressure are not big issues such as cold water household systems.
  • Brass Gate Valves: If corrosion is a serious problem, this is the valve you should use. It’s also able to endure high temperature so the valve is often used in manufacturing applications.
  • Stainless Steel Gate Valves: Thanks to its rust free and corrosion resistant material, the valve is a good choice when corrosion reaches an epidemic level. Since stainless steel would not leach into the water, you don’t have to worry too much about metal contamination and alike. As a result, it’s could withstand weather element, human error as well as tree roots.

Advantages and disadvantages.

One notable strong point of the gate valve is that it would not cause a water hammer due to the valve slow mechanism. If you don’t know, water hammer is a pressure surge caused when the liquid stream is suddenly forced to stop. Water hammer could lead to major problems such as excessive vibration and noise or even a total pipe collapse.

However, gate valves also have a couple of drawbacks relate to its screw handle mechanism. When the valve mechanism is corroded, the valve would no longer work properly. On several valve models, the wedge could get stuck in the partially closed or partially open position which could accelerate the wearing rate.

Compare with other valves

Butterfly valve vs. Gate valve

Butterfly valves are lighter and more compact than gate valves which make them are a good choice for cramped applications. However, butterfly valves are unable to handle corrosion, inflammable and hazardous materials. They mostly used for low temperature and low-pressure arrangement.

Plug valve vs. Gate valve

Plug valves are ideal choices when it comes to quick shutoff and generally economical to operate. Nonetheless, because of the high friction, it’s only employed for precise throttling/modulating.

Globe valve vs. Gate valve

In contrast with gate valves, globe valves are usually designed to regulate the flow rate of the stream. Due to its construction, the glove valve is less vulnerable to seat leakage compared to other valves. You cannot set the valve in any directional flow through.

Stop valve vs. Gate valve

For most of the time, stop valves are often used for household fixtures such as toilets and sinks. They utilize a rubber gasket to shut off the water flow which is not as reliable and efficient as the gate valve wedge.

Ball valves

What is a ball valve?

As the name suggests, ball valves utilize a compact sphere to shutoff the flow of liquid. The sphere itself has a hole, aligning the hole with the pipe would allow the stream to move freely through it. On the other hand, when the hole is perpendicular to the pipe, the flow is stopped entirely.

You could control the ball position through a lever on top. Usually, moving the lever at 90-degree angle would permit stream to pass through or cut it off. The lever is designed in a way that you cannot rotate it more than 90 degrees. In the usual case, the ball is placed on a valve seat with the stern inserted on top of it.

The valve application

Thanks to its robustness and simplicity, the ball valve is used in many applications such as petroleum, household, marine, pharmaceuticals as well as heavy industry. Since it could be designed so the lever rotation is approximately proportional to the flow rate, the valve is able to prove active stream regulation. That is why it’s widely used in a variety of application.

The valve style

  • PVC Ball Valves: These valves are excellent combinations of flexibility and affordability. They are mostly used when heat and pressure are not serious concerns.
  • Brass Ball Valves: This valve type handles heat pretty well so it’s commonly used for high-temperature applications.
  • Bronze Ball Valves: Mainly found on ships because the valve is able to endure constant exposure to seawater.
  • Stainless Steel Ball Valves: Well appreciated for their strength and overall resistances, these valves are what you need when it comes to chemical and water applications.

Advantages and disadvantages.

Ball valves are simple to activate and deactivate so they could be operated by someone who could not manipulate a wheel type valve.  Moreover, you are able to tell the valve position at a glance. In most of the case, ball valves possess high endurance, excellent versatility and long lifespan. They would work reliably for years to come without running into any troubles.

However, the ball valve does have some shortcomings such its requirement for space. Several applications may not have enough room for you to rotate the handle which somewhat limits the use of ball valve. The ball valve could occasionally cause a water hammer situation as well.

Compare with other valves

Globe valve vs. Ball valve

For shutoff applications, people prefer to use ball valves but globe valves are superior at regulating the flow rate. If you want to have excellent throttling control, you should consider using globe valves.

Plug valve vs. Ball valve

In general, the ball valve could offer you a certain degree of throttling control which is much better than the plug valves. In addition, ball valves could function well for years while plug valves may get stuck eventually and therefore become difficult to operate. Beyond that, these valves are quite similar and even interchangeable in some cases.

Butterfly valve vs. Ball valve

When it comes to endurance, ball valves are capable of handling moderate pressure and temperature floatation. In contrast, butterfly valves could only be used in low pressure and low-temperature applications.

Conclusion

And that is most of what you should know about these valves, not too hard to absorb, right? Gate valves vs. Ball valves, it’s not easy to decide the winner without taking into account your needs and requirements. But with the help of this article, you should be able to decide the right valve type to use for your piping system.

How much weight can a 2×4 support ? – An article for DIY enthusiasts

​​​​​​​​For most of the time, DIY projects are straightforward tasks that you could do with on hand materials and tools. However, you should never underestimate their complexity, especially when it comes to sophisticated and large-scale projects. Without careful planning, the final result of your DIY project may be less than ideal or even an outright failure.

So in the case that the project involves the use of 2x4s as support frames, you must calculate the loading weight properly. "How much weight can a 2x4 support?", the answer to that question could be found right here in this article. Take a good look at the information below in order to have a successful and long-lasting project.

Important factors that you need to take into account

Lumber grade

The lumber grade would tell you most of what you should know to know about the material strength rating and its associated stiffness value. Everything is not created equal so make sure you check out the lumber grade before you use them for your subject.

Load duration

How long will the 2x4s stay loaded? Full-time loading requires careful consideration of the material strength rating (Fb) while stiffness value (E) is generally unaffected. In case you don't know, E relates to the amount of weight that could cause the material to deform while Fb indicates the design strength of the material outermost sections.

Wood choice

In the usual case, the most common wood that construction limbers utilize is pine which possesses admirable compression strength and excellent hardness. However, there are different types of pine with different grades so you should research carefully before you start. The weakest pine currently in use is Eastern White pine while the strongest is Slash pine.

Project design

Usually, the 2x4s would be assembled in a way that matches the project dimension requirement. Nonetheless, whenever it's possible, people tend to go after a simple and robust design instead of complicated ones. A straightforward wooden structure takes little time to plan and fabricate while also allow easy repair if needed. 

The characteristics of the average 2x4s

How far can a 2x4 span?

In general, the length of a 2x4 could be as long as 20 feet but you have to consider a couple of issues. At 10 feet, a 2x4 would not sag noticeably under its own weight but it's also unlikely that it could stay completely straight either. In fact, 2x4s may even bow, warp and twist as they dry out. As a result, expect a certain level of distortion and make adjustments to your project design accordingly.

2x4 vs 2x6 in term of strength

Technically speaking, 2x6s possess better strength and insulation value compared to 2x4s which make them a good choice for remodeling projects. However, the price of 2x6s is considerably higher than 2x4s as well and that mean buying 2x6s is not always an economical investment. Using a well-thought design, a collection of 2x4s could form a structure with excellent integrity without end up costing you a fortune.

How much weight can a 2x4 support vertically?

Assuming that the load is square and there is no wind, the average 8 feet 2x4 could handle around 1,000 pounds vertically. Of course, it's wise not to push the material up to its limit, use brace and alike to secure the 2x4s whenever it's needed. 

How much weight can a 2x4 support horizontally?

In this case, we have to take into the load position, is it a uniform load or only a point load? For an example, a 10 feet long 2x4 with a 40 pounds uniform load would have a maximum bending moment of 1,000 feet pound. On the other hand, the same 10 feet long 2x4 with a 400 pounds point load should experience a maximum bending moment of 500 feet pound.

Conclusion

And that is pretty much it, not too hard to take in, right? "How much weight can a 2x4 support?", it's a difficult question issue to tackle when you are not an expert in the field. But with the help of this article, you should be able to come up with a close estimate.