One of my big pet peeves about the way our culture has developed is that when something breaks, we just throw it out, and get something new. We constantly buy, upgrade, and consume. So when a wooden dish rack we’ve had for ~3 years broke, we could have chucked it and bought a new one for ~$10 – 15, but instead, I decided to fix it. So how do you fix a wooden dish rack, and why even bother?
The reasons were as follows:
1. Don’t throw things out that don’t need to be thrown out.
2. Don’t buy things no matter how inexpensive to replace something easily fixable.
3. Save time by not going to the store to buy a new one, or, save packaging, carbon etc… by not having one shipped to us, and spending the 15 mins to look for the right dish rack on Amazon or some other e-commerce site.
4. Household items can be easily fixed in about the same amount of time it takes to order a new one.
How to fix a wooden dish rack
I have to be honest, fixing a dish rack is pretty easy. Not knowing the quality of the wood, I assumed it was garbage (it was), so I stapled the ends with a staple gun before nailing together the pieces that had separated.
I did this first because I was worried the wood would split as I nailed it together, and wanted to reinforce it – even if just a little.
Next, I used Elmer’s wood glue around those areas of the rack that separated which I would need to bind, and lastly, I nailed it all together and bound it with rubber bands as the glue dried. I’m not sure I needed to do this last bit but figured it couldn’t hurt.
Result: A good as new dish rack that took about 15 minutes to put together using tools I already had laying around in our Brooklyn apartment. I figure it’s the same 15 minutes I would have used to find and order a dish rack should we not have fixed it, and even though it’s just a little, I still managed to keep something from the trash heap.
Findings: Man the wood they use for these cheap kitchen racks, etc… is garbage, basically, cheap treated bamboo which I guess is fine as bamboo grows like wildfire is strong and sustainable.
If you’re into DIY and at home, projects have a look at how we built a grow shelf last winter for growing food indoors.