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    Mains voltage

    The voltage of electricity entering your house: 230v in the UK.

    Making good

    Rectifying any flaws or minor problems with the finished job.


    In some two-piece fittings there is a male and female part.  The male part will fit into the female part e.g. a male screw thread fits into a female thread.

    Mansard roof

    A design of roof made up of four sloping sides, but with each plane becoming steeper halfway down.


    A finish that produces an effect that resembles marble.


    A sealant used to waterproof joints with a flexible, rubbery consistency even when dry.


    MDF is the abbreviation for Medium Density Fibreboard. A type of manmade hardboard with a smooth finish. See the materials section for more information.

    Melamine board

    Melamine is a tough, synthetic resin that is used to coat man-made boards such as chipboard. Melamine board is widely used in making kitchen cabinets etc.


    A generic term for a structural part of a building.


    Refers to a wood finish or paint that allows moisture to escape from the timber to allow it to dry out while protecting it from the rain or damp.

    Miniature circuit breakers (MCB)

    Located on the consumer unit, MCBs are the modern equivalent of fuses. They act as a trip switch shutting down a circuit when it is overloaded.


    An angled cut, usually at 45º to form a right-angled joint.


    A roof with only one slope, usually found on extensions.


    A mixture of sand, cement and water used in bricklaying and rendering.


    A rectangular recess into which a matching rectangular peg fits to form a joint e.g. a mortise and tenon joint or a mortise lock.


    A length of string weighted at one end used to feed cable through narrow vertical gaps. With one end of the string tied securely to the cable, the weighted end is dropped down the narrow gap. The weight will end up at the bottom of the narrow gap enabling you to pull the cable through.


    The vertical section that divides a window frame.


    The central vertical section of a panel door.