DIY home repair with a small car

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Quick question: if you didn't have a truck, could you still do your own home repair?
I ask this because I am finding that most of my home improvement projects require more hauling capacity than our little Neon has. I'm not talking big stuff, like a truckload of drywall or lumber. Mostly it's small stuff, like a few 8' lengths of 1x2, some mulch, a few shrubs, etc. In otherwords, not enough to justify buying a truck.
For those of you in the same boat, how do you deal with the situation? Rentals? Use a friend's truck? Delivery?
Joseph
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For lighter items, roof rack may be the best bet. I have a mid sized car and can put the 8' pieces through a window and they stick out a few inches. Short distances are not that big a deal, but there are safety considerations with material not tied down properly, hanging out of the truck, etc.
Really big stuff, I take the pickup home from work. Home Depot rents a truck for $20 for 75 minutes if you shop there.
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used chevy conversion van, loaded, 350 engine. it moves the family and the family's repair needs.
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Joseph O'Brien wrote:

Most outlets have rental trucks and or delivery services available.
--
Joseph Meehan

Dia duit
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Joseph Meehan wrote:

Sears used to sell a small two wheel trailer for a little over $100. I had one until I bought a small pick-up. It was very handy and carried a lot of dirt, sand, plants, etc. Be very careful when putting long boards out the side window. I did this and got a ticket for exceeding the amount of inches that are allowed. It's better to get racks for your car and tie the long stuff on top. Good luck. Chuck B.
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-snip-

About 35 years ago I picked up some 8foot 2x2s and put them through the front passenger window of my corvair. They 'only' stuck out a couple feet. On the way home some yahoo came at me in my lane and I swerved a bit to the right. The 2x2s caught a signpost and broke across the back of my head.
Good lesson. Roof racks are cheap.
Jim
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wrote:

Good thing they weren't 2x4's, eh.

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Joseph O'Brien wrote:

one time, I cut 7 sheets of drywall in 1/2 lengthwise and hauled them in a mazda 323
yeah, just consolidate the big items if you can, I think most places get 50 bucks for delivery, you could probably hire a local from the classified under moving and hauling cheaper than 50 bucks
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I do know that home despot charges (around here anyway) $60 for *everything* in an order. So it's best to bunch up a number of things and get them all delivered at once. Takes a day or two though, and the planning of course.
Much to my wife's chagrin I've lugged all manner of building materials in her VW Cabrio convertible. Fold-down rear sets are a wonderful thing for hauling the occasional 2x4. But this only when I happened to be near the store and not driving my beat-up old jeep cherokee.
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I have a 1991 VW Golf and can fit a ton of stuff in it. I've fit an entire twin mattress in it with the hatch closed. I can't fit a full 4x8 sheet of plywood, but I've fit over a dozen 8-foot 2x4s. Doesn't Home Depot offer free delivery on purchases over $50?
The few times that I need something that won't fit into my Golf I'll just rent a truck, use a friend's, or have it delivered. It won't be enough times for me to justify owning a truck.
Hatchbacks rule.
Mike
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Agree. Over the past 2 years we've been remodeling our 1950's rancher, and I've hauled all kinds of big stuff in my 1996 Honda Civic hatchback. Ten 10' metal gutters. 25 large bags of potting soil. Last night I had a mountain bike and a 7' Christmas tree in the back. Hatchbacks are really the best of both worlds - great gas mileage and a decent amount of hauling capacity as well.
-Craig
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Get a hatchback. You'd be amazed what will fit in the back of an old Escort hatchback.
The other option is to rent the truck at Home Depot and try to bring stuff all at once.
Have a friend with a truck/van/ or SUV?
Or get tons of stuff delivered when you buy appliances. I do believe that they will deliver stuff along with appliances for no extra charge as long as they are going to your house anyway,
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Obviously a roof rack. Maybe a small trailer? There are trailers with a two wheel axle that one tows. It's four foot bed plus, say a three foot towing beam plus a small overhang can, with care, carry 4x8 sheets if necessary. But there is also another type trailer that hinges onto the back bumper (not that many cars have bumpers theses days!) and has a single smaller swivelling 'dolly' wheel to support the weight. I have seen such a hinged/dolly wheel trailer carry several of the old style milk churns, i.e. of the order of 200 kilos! When detached both type trailers can be quite compact and stood up against a wall to save space. Also while not familiar with a Neon; if the front passenger seat be taken out and the rear seat folded down lengthy items could be poked in from the trunk? That's why some cars have rear seats that 50% or 30% fold down is it not? Another problem with modern cars seems to be that there are no door handles, they are now recessed. Because one used to be able to tie items to the older protruding handles; same with mirrors, today they are streamlined and offer little to tie anything to! Hanging stuff through the windows on the glass seems hazardous? We have had good family success with a small business using the smaller sized 'king cab' pickups. Barely big enough to stuff two adults into the small 'jump' seats for short distances (but OK for children) with a six foot rear bed, for 'the supplies'. Easily carry 800 to 1000 pounds. W/o passengers, tool boxes locked into cab behind front seats. Four cylinder economy (120 to 150 HP) at highway legal speed. With addition of a simple frame even such a small pickup can carry 12 to 14 foot pipe lengths, 'up top' over the cab! But even the pickups have got less utilitarian! Instead of sturdy 'tie down hooks' our latest one has weak squiggly and inacessible little hooks hidden inside the corners of truck bed! And I could go on ................ but won't! Must also mention; have a relative who operates, in Europe, a successful house cleaning and renovation business out of a Saab station wagon! Buckets, mops, lawnmowers, step ladders, tools, paint cans and spares, the works!
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wrote:

Second on the roof racks. Years ago when my truck was in the shop I used a Toyota Corona and suction cup roof racks to transport a 40' ladder around from job to job.
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Joseph O'Brien wrote:

Don't do this: http://tinyurl.com/7oo4z
A friend's truck is great for the larger stuff, if it's okay with them, but remember to conserve those favors. Don't go back to the well too often. A roof rack is the way to go for the small stuff. I've found that local lumberyards charge less for delivery than Home Depot. They won't have shrubbery, but it'll probably work the same way at your local nursery.
R
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-> Quick question: if you didn't have a truck, could you still do your own -> home repair? -> -> I ask this because I am finding that most of my home improvement -> projects require more hauling capacity than our little Neon has. I'm -> not talking big stuff, like a truckload of drywall or lumber. Mostly -> it's small stuff, like a few 8' lengths of 1x2, some mulch, a few -> shrubs, etc. In otherwords, not enough to justify buying a truck. -> -> For those of you in the same boat, how do you deal with the situation? -> Rentals? Use a friend's truck? Delivery?
Since I've become a homeowner I'm certain that, when you buy the house you should also buy a truck.
I do have a trailer hitch on the back of my Saturn station wagon, but I can only tow up to 1,000 lbs. I figure that's better than nothing. I don't own a trailer so I'd have to borrow or rent one.
I haven't bought much big stuff yet, but what I have bought (lumber) I had delivered.
--
8^)~~~ Sue (remove the x to e-mail)
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Minivan. Honda Odyssey fits 4x8 rock/plywood just fine...gotta pull the middle seats though. Also good for hauling the kidz. Unfortunately the seats have to go back in. Details
--
John



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A small utility trailer might be your best bet. I have one and it has paid for itself easily already. We use it for large purchases, moving stuff, firewood, getting the tractor to the shop (saving about $50 each time), etc. The little Neon is not much of a puller, but if you limit it to a small trailer and not pull much you might be OK on slow roads. You want an 8 foot width. Tomes

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LOL - I meant at least a 4 foot width. Mine is 8 feet long x 5 feet wide.

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wrote:

I thought maybe you had a Pacer. You remember, the wide small car.

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