Jay Somerset

Canadian Home Workshop contributor Jay Somerset has been writing about home renovations and other DIY projects since 2001.

Each month, he will tackle a home renovation project that can be done in a weekend or less. From insulating your pipes to installing a tankless water heater to tuning your barbecue, Jay will show you how to get it done right, right away.

He lives with his wife and cat in Toronto.

Recent Articles and Blog Posts

How to properly hang a picture

When I was younger, hanging a picture meant banging a nail-and nail; size didn't matter-into the wall. Often this resulted in broken drywall, large, unsightly holes or insufficient affixtures, with heavier pictures falling off the...

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Weekend DIY: Programmable thermostat

The average Canadian household spends more than $2,000 a year on energy bills-nearly half of which going to heating and cooling, according to the Canadian Housing and Mortgage Corporation (CMHC). Even if your abode is well...

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Weekend DIY: Projects to leave to the pros

A week's vacation sounds pretty good right about now, especially to somewhere warm and sunny. But just because you're taking a break from work and household chores doesn't mean you have to "leave things be" back at the ole...

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Can you green your workshop?

High fuel costs and a desire to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions have driven many of us out of our cobwebby ways; we're recycling, installing energy-efficient windows and doors, and generally taking up the green torch of...

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10 smart eco-upgrades

Seventeen per cent of greenhouse-gas emissions are generated from energy consumed in the home, according to Canada’s Office of Energy Efficiency. Compared with standard new homes built to minimum building code requirements, an...

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Weekend DIY: Sharpen your lawnmower blades

Cleaning a closet, sharpening chisels or running a batch of vinegar through the coffee maker–who said the DIY lifestyle was all glamour? In the name of efficiency and lifespan, sometimes you’ve got to slow down and sharpen up....

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Weekend DIY: Install a rain barrel

I was watering my garden last weekend and, like I used to do as a kid, I took a sip of water straight from the hose. As cool and refreshing as it was–and there is something tasty about water from a rubber hose–I had a new...

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Add an outdoor kitchen to your backyard

There are few things as enjoyable as inviting friends over for a backyard barbecue; warm breezes peppered with whiffs of smoke, cold drinks, a cottage atmosphere–what's not to like, other than the bland setup most of us have: a...

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Weekend DIY: Water heater tuneup

In my house, there never seems to be enough hot water, or, especially if someone’s been doing laundry, it seems to take forever before the cold turns to hot–and then it’s scorching. Like your well-used shop tools, it’s...

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Get the look of real wood without the hassle

When it comes to wood, nothing beats the real thing. Unless it looks and feels like the real thing but resists mould, rot, insects and fire, and doesn’t require yearly refinishing. Here are five wood doppelgängers sure to...

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How do you heat your home?

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