Wednesday, December 19, 2012

My New BFF

Since my recently developed love of DIY came about, I've discovered a number of easy & handy items that really deliver a major bang for the buck.  Updated outlets & covers, patching & sanding...and of course, paint.  It's hard to beat paint. 

But this week, I found a new one.  His name is Caulk.

I have been dreading this little project for too long.

Maybe it was the idea of scraping and making a mess.  Maybe it was the thought of sticky goop that caulk can be.  Or maybe because these are our NEW stairs (in the basement) that shouldn't be looking old and gross?  I mean, one year in and this is happening!?!?  Really?

Now, to be fair, the wall is plaster and the stringer is wood. 

And it's a (shared) cold foundation wall.  With temperature variations and two different materials coming together, how could I not expect shrinkage....  Well, I just didn't.  The new basement will always be new and look new and stay new, right? 


So, as soon as I got over that (finally), I went to work.  That was on Monday.

This tool helped.  Although, not much came off. 

The old caulk wasn't coming out or bulging.  It was just severely cracked and separated.  So really, the tool just helped smooth out any rough edges. 

After I brushed out the bits from the scraped up crack and swept up the mess, I went to work with this guy.

I put all my trust in this stuff because if you read the fine print, it says "crack proof" and "permanently flexible."  In uppercase letters.  I mean, advertising doesn't lie.  That, and The Home Depot guy said it would work.

So here's the before and after:


(Hard to see the difference in the full-staircase shots, but I love before and afters, so they're staying)

I know.  It's caulk!  It did what it's supposed to do.  But here's the catch.  It far.  Today is the 2nd day, in real time.  And guess what.  Still no crack.  No surprise there.

But it has settled into the crack's crevice.  (I tried to take pictures, but white caulk on white paint means a white out mess of a shot on my camera) 

So my plan is this: 
1. Apply another line of caulk (and press gently) to even out the surface
2. LEAVE IT over the holidays
3. Inspect
4. Paint
5. Cross fingers and hope that advertising and The Home Depot guy are always right

In the meantime, I'm fully enjoying my *new* staircase without the cracked gross-looking mess on the side that was bothering me for so long.

Stay tuned...


  1. Yahh, there are more like me out there. Like you, I totally love caulk - it just makes things look more professional and finished.

  2. I know and love caulk, too! Works wonders in the bathroom if you you have an old tub or an icky toilet base. Big improvement.