by Tony Schmit

This segment is aimed at helping the everyday DIYer avoid the common mistakes that can take away from the “wow factor” hoped to be gained from the time and energy invested!

This Week: DO fill gaps in trim work:

Replacing outdated trim, classing up casings, or adding some beautiful crown molding is a great, and achievable, way to freshen up or bring a modern look to your space. The issue with this work comes at the end. DIYers will often bring this project 95% of the way to perfection and then skip a vital piece of the process designed to get a professional look: filling the gaps.

Whether it be the holes and dents made by a nailer when installing new trim or the gap that can sometimes appear between a baseboard and wall when a wall is a bit out of plumb, take the extra time to fill, lightly sand (if needed), and touch-up these areas with paint. While this can be tedious work at the end of a process that already may be time-consuming, it is very important in achieving that fine finished look that you, and potential buyers, will be looking for.

The products I would suggest to fill gaps depend on the location. For the space between your beautiful new countertops and the wall, I would go with paintable caulk. For baseboards, casings, and moldings, a simple (sandable) wood filler will do nicely. Just try to match the finish as best as you can!

Bottom line: This is a relatively easy, albeit time-consuming, process that, if done correctly, will maximize the end result of your DIY project. Good luck and have fun!