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Dear Donny.


Q What's the best way to restore my kitchen ceiling to matt white? It's painted in cream gloss.

Andrew Bond, by email A Sand the surface of the gloss to break the glaze, then clean it with a liquid sandpaper. When the ceiling is dry, apply a quick-drying, water-based primer and once dry, slap on matt white.

Q Could you advise on products to clean a Yorkshire stone fireplace with a coal fire? Thank you.

Trina Moran, by email.

AI'd start with Lithofin Power-Clean or Lithofin Wexa, which should remove any oily soot and heavy staining. It will work on polished or rough natural stone and engineered stone. For really stubborn stains, use Lithofin Oil-Ex.

QI have two gateposts that I paint every year with Sandtex exterior paint. A green moss keeps coming through the paintwork on one of them. Do you have any suggestions? Chris Moran, by email If the posts are metal, get a grinder and fix a zirconium flap disc to it.

AThis disc will strip the paint off the post back to a polished steel surface in no time. Next, apply a coat of red oxide metal primer, then your topcoat.

For wood, use a heat gun to burn off the paint and kill any growth. Then apply something like Sadolin Woodshield. Or even better, Sovereign SX70 woodstain.

Remember, stain penetrates the wood and paint sits on the surface. If the posts are timber, you might have a problem with the section in the ground. It is obviously impossible to protect or paint it and the organic growth might creep up.

Q How do I get nicotine off the plastic surround of a ceiling down light? Reg Brooks, by email A Denatured ethanol/methanol applied with a lint-free cloth should do the trick, Reg. It is also a solvent and great for removing silicon stains, too. SEND YOUR QUESTIONS TO: DONNY'S TOP TIP If you live in a hard water area you'll know the damage limescale can do to washing machines. Soda Crystals, available in supermarkets and chemists, can soften the water. Add to every wash.
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Title Annotation:Features; Opinion Column
Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:Apr 19, 2014
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