What Are Magnets Used for in the Home?

Magnets are good for more than just fridges.
Magnets are good for more than just fridges. (Image: magnet m image by Vita Vanaga from Fotolia.com)

A magnet's is good for more than just pinning family photos on the fridge. Its ability not only to find metal, but also to cling to it indefinitely makes it viable for a variety of uses. You can also customize your house to take better advantage of magnets, or use magnets to more efficiently avoid waste.

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Locate Metal Studs

Although many homes use wooden studs, metal studs are a common alternative. These studs are found immediately behind the sheetrock or wooden paneling of your walls, and they are useful as support. If you want to hang a heavy painting, for instance, first find a stud to nail it to. Otherwise, your nail might tear out of the sheetrock from the weight of your painting. Since they're located behind a solid surface, however, it is challenging to find the stud. This is where magnets come in handy. If you have metal studs and a strong magnet, you can move it along the wall until you find resistance. If the magnet sticks to the wall in a full vertical column, odds are good that there's a metal stud.

Magnetized Paint

By mixing small particles of metal in with otherwise normal paints, you can create magnetized paint. Coat your wall in this, and you can hang posters, notes and photographs directly to your wall using just a magnet, which eliminate the need for tacks and push-pins and, in turn, means you won't have to later dab back over your wall with plaster. If you don't want to repaint your house, however, you can still use magnetics liberally on metal shelves, bars and studs to hang images as you like.

Water Heater Longevity

As you use your water heater, calcium particles slowly seep in from the source pipe. Over the course of years, this calcium buildup can corrode the metal of your water heater, ultimately rendering it useless. To avoid this, place a magnet on the intake pipe to catch calcium and other metals as they move towards your water heater.

Gather Screws and Nails

While working on a construction or repair project, it's not uncommon to drop nails and screws. Finding them all is sometimes challenging, but if you have a small child (or adult) who runs around barefoot, you must prevent injury. In the long run, you can also save some money on materials. To make the process easier, use a magnet to attract the screws and nails. By holding it close to the ground and moving it, you'll gradually gather all the nails and screws hidden in your grass.

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