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Home Repair Questions
Answered by Beth Hodge

Q. My long fluorescent lights burn out faster than I would like. When I replace them they often flicker. The ones in my garage give me the most trouble. What am I doing wrong? Thanks!

A: You may want to have the fixture checked to be sure that nothing is loose where the bulb makes a connection.

Q. I live in Michigan and going to try to hire someone to take out parents cracked patio in Cleveland (Rocky River). It split in two years ago and half of the patio sunk. My dad is over 80 and has been caught on occasion trying to break it up with a sledge hammer. (So I've heard from neighbors that come over and stop him.)

I'm so afraid my mother will trip and fall, it is a real danger, especially now that warmer weather is here and she is an avid gardener (still).

Where do I start, who can I contact for a reasonable price since I will be the one footing the bill.

Also, I have no idea what should be installed in place of removed concrete, price is a major concern. The patio if off the kitchen, one step down, approx size 12 x 14 (not sure).

A: You may want to check with the city and see if they offer any programs that would help your parents find a contractor or even help with the work itself.

I would also try just calling about 3 different contractors out to quote having the old concrete demolished and hauled away.

If you are looking to replace it with something else there are many options. Looking for low cost and safety I would opt for something like patio stones.

It can be less expensive and can be leveled in a bed of sand to give them a nice flat and safe area to walk on.

Have a question or tip about home repairs? Let us know at Repair@ClevelandSeniors.Com

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Beth Hodge
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