10 Chores You Can Do in 10 Minutes (or Less)

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Joanne Horton

Subject: Thank you for monthly check list!!

Angie, I do some of these, have been puzzled over the current refrigerator coil cleaning, though. The video is helpful, but honestly, the guy demonstrating the anterior vs. posterior of the frig is strong enough to pull it out into a sufficiently wide kitchen to be behind the frig to clean posterior positioned coils OR his knees are good enough to kneel on a floor and clean anterior located coils. OR he is the straight man in Dean and Jerry/ Dick of the Smother's Brother's. Despite my interpretation of the video, it is going to solve that year long mystery for my How To ~ the frig coils location of my year old frig.

Nancy Wehling

Subject: sharpening a lawn mower blade

This is anything but a 10 minute operation. I suggest you look up what's involved, try it and then see if it still belongs on the list. Among other things you can get hurt getting the thing out and back on if you don't know what you're doing and the blade needs to be balanced when you've sharpened it.


Subject: Cleaning tips

Thanks for the 10 hints; they are timely & easy to do. And though these fall chores are not as quickly done, I always clean my downspouts, place vent covers into the crawl space openings, & shut off the outside water.


Subject: Clean refrigerator coils

In "10 chores you can do in 10 minutes (or less)," chore #6 (Clean refrigerator coils) begins, "Unplug your fridge . . ." Seriously? Whose refrigerator plug is accessible without pulling the refrigerator away from the wall? The tip should begin, "Pull your fridge away from the wall so you can reach the plug." Then you can say, "Unplug your fridge . . ."

David Brinegar

Subject: 10 minutes chores

Thanks for the FALL reminders. Also check and change smoke alarm batteries as a annual/semi-annual quick maintenance check to prepare for the winter seasonl


Subject: These are NOT just 10 minute tasks

I could not pull my fridge out from the wall, unplug the fridge, unscrew the back, brush the coils out, vacuum what is on the floor, replace the panel, plug in the fridge and get it back in its niche in a mere 10 minutes. It is at least three times that.
Rotating the mattress would only take 10 minutes from start to finish if there are two to wrestle with the mattress, otherwise I would probably need a quarter of an hour just to unmake it and start inching it around by myself.

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I second the original question (still unanswered). Speaking as someone who logged in today to try to find an attorney, I see this category as one that's exactly what I have my Angie's List membership for:

1. It's important that I find a good one
2. I'm not an expert enough to know myself who is a good one
3. The industry is full of advertisements and misinformation
4. I wish I knew what experiences other people have had

I don't care about lawns--I planted mine in clover and don't have to mow it. When I do need to mow I use a rotary Fiskars mower, which is great--or a scythe. That's right--a scythe (the European type, which is smaller, and it's very good exercise). Gas-powered mowers, chemical fertilizers and weed killers--all nasty stuff that gets into everyone's air, soil, and water. I'm sure my neighbor doesn't like my wildflowers, semi-wild pockets of fruit bushes, and unmown areas and yes, dandelions (I have 10 acres) but that's too bad. It's better habitat for wildlife, especially the pollinators on which our food supply depends. I think this obsession with the Great American Lawn is a waste of time and resources. Plant some food instead.

I'm not sure Angie et. al. want you to have a complete answer to this question. By re-subscribing at the Indiana State Fair in 2012, I think I paid $20.00 per year for a multi- year subscription. Maybe even less. At the other extreme--and I hope my memory isn't faulty about this--I think the price, for my area, for ONE year was an outrageous $70.00. And they debited me automatically without warning. I had to opt out of that automatic charge. I like Angie's List, but if some of the companies they monitor behaved the way they do in this respect, they'd be on some sort of Pages of Unhappiness. I'll be interested to see if this comment gets published or censored out of existence.

That's very difficult to answer without seeing the house. As one poster said, the prep is the most important part. On newer homes that don't have a lot of peeling paint, the prep can be very minimal even as low as a couple or a few hundred dollars for the prep labor.

On a 100 year old home with 12 coats of peeling paint on it, then the prep costs can be very high and can easily exceed 50% of the job's labor cost.

A 2100 sq ft two story home could easily cost $1000 just for the labor to prep for the paint job. That number could climb too. Throw in lots of caullking  or window glazing, and you could be talking a couple or a few hundred dollars more for labor.

Painting that home with one coat of paint and a different color on the trim could run roughly $1000 or more just for labor. Add a second coat  and that could cost close to another $1000 for labor.

For paint, you may need 20 gallons of paint. You can pay from $30-$70 for a gallon of good quality exterior paint. The manufacturer of the paint should be specified in any painting contract. Otherwise, the contractor could bid at a Sherwin-Williams $60 per gallon paint and then paint the house with $35 Valspar and pocket the difference. $25 dollars per gallon times 20 gallons? That's a pretty penny too.

That was the long answer to your question. The short answer is $2000 to $4000 and up, depending upon the amount of prep, the number of coats, the amount of trim, and the paint used.