12 tricks to fix broken things

It’s often easier to throw broken or damaged items away and buy new ones – but now you don’t have to.

Here are 12 tricks to keep your belongings in working order, thanks to European DIY market ManoMano. 

  1. Remove chewing gum from clothes: To remove chewing gum stuck to jeans you should hold an ice cube on the gum until it hardens. Once it’s hard you can easily pull it off the material.
  2. Unscrew a smashed bulb: If a bulb smashes, removing the socket can be a difficult and dangerous task. To avoid any cuts, heat up the neck of a plastic bottle until the plastic softens. Next, stick it in the socket and using the bottle you can easily unscrew your bulb!
  3. Re-pressurise your shower head: If your shower has lost pressure, it is likely that the holes in the shower head have been blocked up with limescale. You can remove this buildup using white vinegar. Simply leave the shower head soaking in white vinegar for two hours and you should be back to having great showers!
  4. Clean sticky labels: Perfectly useful jars are often ruined with bits of sticky label residue. Instead of spending all of your time scrubbing, just spray some WD-40 on the label, leave it for a few seconds, and then wipe with a dish sponge! Don’t forget to clean the glass well once it’s off.
  5. Remove rust: Unfortunately, sometimes a tool or two can get left out after a big project. Once they get rusty it can feel like more trouble than it’s worth to save them. But don’t worry, removing rust is easy with Coca-Cola. Just soak the tool in some Coca-Cola for 24 hours and you’ll return to find it like new.
  6. Clean pen marks off your furniture: You can also use the WD-40 to remove the pen or pencil marks from upholstered furniture. Simply spray it onto the mark, then rub with a microfiber cloth. You can easily wash away any leftover WD-40 with water.
  7. Unscrew a screw with a broken head: You can use a rubber band to remove a screw with a damaged head. Place the rubber band on the screw or a screwdriver, then start unscrewing.
  8. Clean stainless steel: Even if you clean them meticulously, stainless steel pans can develop dark spots. But luckily these marks aren’t actually difficult to remove: first put salt on the surface, and add white vinegar, then rub the dishes with a sponge. After a little scrubbing your pots and pans will look like new.
  9. Repair old cables: After a few months or years of regular use, cables of start to fray and the wires become exposed. To repair damaged cables take a piece of insulating tube, cut it and wrap it around the cable. Next, heat it with a hairdryer until the tube compresses to the size of the wire. And voila!
  10. Fix a broken zip: We all know that zippers sometimes tend to open up on their own. To avoid this, simply attach the ring from a key ring onto the zipper and hook it over the button. Don’t worry, even if the ring is slightly larger than the button, it will not be noticeable.
  11. Save jumpers with snags: Warm, woolly jumpers are a wardrobe staple, but they have a tendency to catch on things. If your jumper gets a snag, you can easily fix this with a bit of patience. Gently pull the buckled material around the snag back into place and the thread will retract as you do this. If it hasn’t totally disappeared try pulling it through to the reverse side and repeating the process.
  12. Fix broken makeup palettes: Occasionally the unthinkable happens: your favourite powder crashes out of your bag and onto the floor. Even though it can seem like this is the end, hope it not lost! Add a few drops of rubbing alcohol into the palette and mix it in thoroughly. Press the mixture into the compact and smooth it out. Once it’s dry it’ll be as good as new!