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Contagious Home Improvements

If your booth for accepting confessions is now open, I’ve got one to make. I am a super-spreader, and I pass things on by human contact and word of mouth in my every day travels from subdivision-to-subdivision. In fact, your humble correspondent has probably been patient ZERO for a number of home ideas that are highly contagious.

But in my defense, keep in mind it’s only been recently that the word “contagious” has frightened people and compelled them to do things like stay home, cover their faces, and disrupt their kids’ educations. Remember when laughter and enthusiasm were considered contagious? Was that such a bad thing?

Lately, when the following 4 highly contagious home improvement ideas have come up in my everyday conversations with homeowners, I immediately observe in them the following symptoms: Surprise, followed by skepticism, then acceptance, and finally a powerful urge to get Fix St Louis to do them as soon as possible. After you have read each one of these listed below, I’d suggest that you pause and watch for symptoms before moving to the next one.

Bulb-less Light Fixtures

Q. How many homeowners does it take to change a light bulb?

A. Where have you been?

If you’ve been to your hardware store’s light fixture section recently, you may have noticed a handful of disoriented shoppers, drifting aimlessly through the aisles, clutching packages in their hands, all looking for a clerk to ask what type of bulbs the light fixture needs. Fact is, there are now a lot of light fixtures available that don’t need ANY bulbs at all because the LED elements (called “diodes”) that are built into bulbs are instead built into the wiring of the fixture. (Yeah, I don’t understand it either). Even more surprising, the manufacturers claim these lights will last for DECADES! (Based on our experience, so far so good, but time will tell).

When you search for these fixtures, look for the word “integrated” on the package which, to clarify, refers to the LED elements built into the fixture, and not the 1954 landmark Supreme Court ruling on Brown v. Board of Education.

Obviously, Fix St Louis can replace your old light fixtures with the new bulb-less ones. We can even send over our trained acrobats to change-out those light fixtures that are 20’ up in the air on your vaulted ceiling, so you can stop spending hours pondering how you will ever replace that burned-out bulb.

Picture or Art TV’s

I pin the beginning of the cultural decline in America to when the first big screen TV was mounted over a fireplace. Before then, families would gather before the fire, and play Parcheesi beneath a patriotic picture of George Washington crossing the Delaware, or a culturally-uplifting Claude Monet painting of water lilies.

But since then, that TV has driven families out and apart by serving as either a giant black billboard advertising that they can have more fun someplace else, or loudly blaring a game between two colleges you’ve barely heard of, playing a sport no one in your family has ever played, while Junior sits in a corner stuffing Cheetos down his pie-hole.

But these new “picture” or “art” TV’s promise to put the “family” back in “family room.” Imagine instead of that TV on its bracket jutting out of that wall, there’s a framed picture mounted flush against that wall – maybe there are even a few framed pictures around it. But instead of a black TV screen within that frame, there’s an illuminated picture of a painting there – one that might rotate through a series of paintings. One of those paintings that you scroll through could be your TV, whenever you wanted to watch.

The reason this unit can be mounted flat against the wall is NOT because the electronics and power outlets have become so small that they can fit within the tiny depth of the frame – not yet, in any case. It’s because those components are shoved into a recessed cavity behind the Picture TV, just like that medicine cabinet that’s recessed into your bathroom wall. Oh, I wonder who-oh-who has the skills to create that recessed cavity and run power wires behind the wall so that no one can see them. Might it be Fix St Louis?

Wi-Fi Garage Door Openers

You may have noticed there are a lot of new appliances that claim to be “Smart” appliances, but are about the stupidest things you have ever heard of. It’s just been all-too-irresistible for appliance company marketing types at off-site brainstorming sessions to conjure-up all the ways they can combine smart phones and the Internet with their products. No, I don’t really need Samsung to send me an email every month telling me what percentage of my laundry loads were permanent press. Or for that matter, to alert me that a stranger has broken into my house to do his laundry, and his linens have just entered the spin cycle.

But, I do make an exception for garage door openers you can access with your smart phones. Did I absent-mindedly pull away from my house on my way to work without closing the garage door? Did I check a THIRD time before driving 100 miles into my vacation that the garage door was closed? Did one of my kids lock themselves out of the house? Can I get the delivery truck driver to leave my package inside the garage, instead of outside where it’s raining? Hey, why not use your phone now, whether it is smart OR dumb, to request that Fix St Louis smart technicians make your garage door opener smarter?

Walkways that Don’t Take your Elderly Guests on a Trip

Has that last concrete walkway slab before the front porch sunk so low that you now have to do a high jump to get to the front door? Or, have the walkway slabs on the way to the porch become so uneven that they have become a trip hazard?

The truth is that only the most painfully shy and deeply introverted people look down at their feet as they walk to your front door. The rest of us take things for granted, like a level walkway or that we need to lift our foot between 7 and 7-¾” to get to the next step.

A lot of homeowners know they have these problems, but try not to think about them because they assume fixing them would be a very big deal. Like, it would require hiring that entire construction crew with their equipment that they just passed along I-64 on their way home.

But the reality is, this is a job that generally costs hundreds, not thousands of dollars. And what’s the value of Aunt Fannie not tripping and breaking a hip when she comes over to drop-off a freshly baked blueberry pie? Not to make you feel guilty. Oh, what the hell, go ahead and feel guilty. There are some things a responsible homeowner just needs to suck-up and do. Call Fix St Louis. We don’t actually do this work, but we’ll tell you who does.

Well, now you are up-to-date on today’s most contagious home improvements. Of course, there will be ongoing variants over time, and we’ll do our best to keep you posted without scaring you to half-to-death. Meanwhile, let’s get you all vaccinated and boosted on your current maladies as listed above. Take a moment to call Fix St Louis, rip off that mask so that our Customer Service Representative can actually hear what you’re saying, and let’s get your symptoms treated.

Dr Steve

Fix St Louis