Readers offer their best tips for using alternative household tools as screwdrivers in a pinch, getting wrinkles out without an iron, and clever uses for keyboard trays.
About the Tips Box: Every day we receive boatloads of great reader tips in our inbox, but for various reasons — maybe they're a bit too niche, maybe we couldn't find a good way to present it, or maybe we just couldn't fit it in — the tip didn't make the front page. From the Tips Box is where we round up some of our favourites for your buffet-style consumption. Got a tip of your own to share? Add it in the comments, share it here, or email it to tips at lifehacker.com.au.
Use a Potato Peeler as a Screwdriver
Lisa names another tool we can use in place of a Phillips head screwdriver:
The next time you need a Phillips head screwdriver and can't find yours, grab the potato peeler out of your kitchen drawer. The tip, normally used to pluck eyes out of potatoes, is just the right size to fit standard Phillps head screws. I'd love to say I don't rely on this tip often but, actually, I'm often just too lazy to walk to the garage for my toolbox.
Use a Hair Straightener to Quick Iron Shirts
Photo by Chelsea Oakes.
erneff shows us a quick way to flatten a few wrinkles:
My roommate wears a button down shirt everyday but doesn't always have time to iron. When he needs to spiff up just a bit he grabs his girlfriend's old hair straightener and irons the placket, collar and cuffs of his shirt as needed. The hair straightener does a good job, and he can use it while wearing the wrinkled shirt, though I don't recommend that method.
You can't iron the whole shirt practically with a hair straightener, but if you just need to flatten a few wrinkles before going out it's a quick fix.
Turn a Keyboard Tray Into a Cheap Bookshelf
mindtrix shares a different use for desk keyboard trays:
If you are like me you really find no use in using the keyboard tray that comes standard with your computer desk. So instead of letting it sit around in a closet or throwing it out, go to your local hardware store and pick up a few 'L' brackets and a couple screws and make a cheap bookshelf out of it.
Keep Track of Household Items with Magnets
gohugatree magnetises scissors to the fridge so they don't get lost:
We were always losing the kitchen scissors (especially at very critical moments). We had some spare small earth magnets, so I attached one to the metal part of the scissors and stuck it to the refrigerator. Now we know where they are at all times!
Scissors are definitely the item to lose in my house as well, but this tip can probably work with a lot of different household items.