3 Free Do It Yourself Apps for iPhone and iPad

I'm looking to downsize. My current 4 bedroom, 3 bath home is just too big anymore. I want to drop a bedroom and shed maybe 500-700 square feet, and reduce my monthly expenses by at least 20%. To do that I have to ready my current home for the selling market.

That's when I ran into a huge list of stuff I should have done over the years, but haven't for some reason. (Laziness is likely the real reason).

There's a door that needs to be trued, a bathroom that needs painting, some patches on the lawn that defies every attempt to keep it sodded, a wall outlet that got damaged and needs replacing, and the list goes on. It's amazing how that list has grown.

Free on iTunes

I guess I can't claim complete laziness, the house is in pretty decent repair, even with the list items begging for attention. Still, I now face a fairly large queue of tasks that need to be done sooner than later.

Luckily, I am versed in usage of hammer, screwdriver, saw, and paint brush. In fact, I just finished a caulking task that would make a pro proud. (The secret is masking tape!) However, there are those of us who feel as lost in a Home Depot as a fish in a gymnasium. My list would look like a death sentence to those folks, or at least an opportunity to completely ruin whatever task that is attempted regardless of apparent simplicity.

For those of you who have an unnatural fear of 10d nails in bulk and are clueless as to the difference between a "plus" or "minus" drill bit, you've come to the right place. This week I'm looking at apps that'll help you do it yourself, even if you don't wanna do it yourself.

So lets get to it.

DIY Tip Genius [52 MB, runs on all iOS devices capable of running iOS 6.0 or later, Maker: Reader's Digest Association, Inc.]

DIY Tips

I'll mop a floor all day long, but I would pay serious money to have someone clean the shower. Hard water stains appear quickly after I clean no matter how much I squeegee. So, it should have dawned on me to apply a water repellent to the glass so that water runs off along with its stain causing minerals. It should have dawned on me, but it didn't, I got the advice from DIY Tip Genius.

Sure, you can find tips like that with a web search, but Tip Genius puts them all in a convenient and easy to use app. The app includes step by step instructions with plenty of photos to show you exactly what you need to do and lists the materials you'll need to get the job done.

DIY TipGreat free tips though you'll pay for more.

The app is sponsored by the work clothes maker, Dickie, so there are no ads. However, the free version limits you to 3 tips per category. It's still worth downloading because there are a lot of categories. The free version is where I got the shower door tip from.

If you've got a task ahead of you check out DIY Tip Genius and see if there's a better way to do it.

iFixIt [23.9 MB, runs on all iOS devices capable of running iOS 4.3 or later, Maker: IFixIt]


When my daughter was very young and she broke something she would attempt a repair declaring, "IIIIIII fizzit!" as she fumbled with the pieces. Cute, but I wound up completing the fix, if it were even possible.

Nowadays my daughter confidently tackles all manner of fix it jobs because of three things:

- She has better eye-hand coordination
- She can read, and...
- She has iFixIt

IFixIt let's anyone with the above skills tackle tasks that they might otherwise hire someone to do, thus saving time and money. The free app accesses tons of how-tos, all with well organized instructions on repairs from autos to zippers.

IFixItFix almost anything with IFixIt

Did I mention that this app and all the guides inside are free? Even better, there are no ads! You just get clear guidance on repairs with lots of photos to help go from broke to fix.

"If it's free, how do they make money?"

Good question. They do it by providing access to parts stores for the stuff you want to fix. Smart!

Regardless (not 'irregardless' which is a word I hate) of how or why it's free, if you fix things or want to, this is the app for you.

WikiHow [27.5 MB, runs on all iOS devices capable of running iOS 7.0 or later, Maker: WikiHow.]


Working through a list of tasks is fun and all, but often we just want to know how something works or what's the best way to get something done. For such occasions WikiHow can help.

While you can certainly learn the best way to hammer a nail with the app, WikiHow can also advise you how to forward filter your Gmail account, how to soften new sheets, or how to get a job teaching English in a foreign country.

WikihowWkiHow, great source for Life How-tos

The instructions are clear and easy to follow, and often it lists multiple ways to accomplish an undertaking, so you can pick what's best for your situation.

Like IFixIt, the how-tos in WikiHow are all free and ad free. This is a no-brainer. WikiHow will come in handy. Grab it.

That's a wrap for this week. If you're a Captain America fan then you'll want to stand up and salute this; Captain America: The Winter Soldier game is this week's Free App of the Week. This week's Free Single of the Week is Call Me, by St. Paul & The Broken Bones.