In addition to the improved searchability of the Internet, the rise of Pinterest and YouTube has made home-improvement projects seem much more practical for DIYers than ever before. But just because you have a wealth of knowledge at your fingertips, that doesn’t remove all the risks associated with tackling a big project on your own.
Five Tips to Keep You Safe
Any time you pursue a home improvement project, there’s a risk that something could go wrong. In order to avoid causing damage to your home or inflicting injury upon yourself, make sure to heed the following advice:
1. Don’t Do These Projects On Your Own
There are plenty of small jobs you can do on your own with relatively minimal experience and virtually no risk. But other projects are better left to professionals.
Electrical tasks are one such example. “Any time you’re faced with a job that involves messing with electrical components in your home, it’s best to call an electrician,” Green Residential explains.
“Whether you need to replace an outlet or run a new cable, the potential cost savings of doing it yourself simply don’t justify the high level of risk.”
The same could be said of wall demolitions, certain plumbing projects, and most garage door repairs. Whenever in doubt, ask a professional to come and look. If nothing else, he or she can correctly identify what’s wrong for you.
2. Wear the Proper Equipment
It’s always crucial to wear the proper equipment when you tackle a particular job. Otherwise, you could suffer serious injuries.
It depends on the particular job you’re attempting, but common protection for household DIY projects include gloves, eyewear, earplugs, and breathing masks. And in the interests of breathing protection, always ensure you have proper ventilation inside your home if you’re using strong paints, strainers, or other chemicals.
3. Be Cognizant of Dangerous Substances
When you approach a project where you’ll have to remove or manipulate an existing component of your home — such as a wall, ceiling, flooring, or plumbing fixtures — try to be aware of any dangerous materials with which you could be coming into contact (either topically or through the air).
If your home was built prior to 1978, there’s a possibility of lead paint. Asbestos is another item to watch for.
According to property restoration expert Dan Barr, It is dangerous to swallow or inhale even a small amount of asbestos or lead, and in case you are removing walls or ceilings or doing major work on floors you have a considerable risk of encountering both.
If you believe your home might contain dangerous substances such as these, it’s a smart idea to contact an indoor environmental expert to take samples. It’s also highly recommended that you hire a professional for the entire job.
4. Always Unplug and Remove Batteries
When you’re doing projects around the house, you’ll need a selection of power tools. They might include drills and drivers, saws, nail guns, staplers, and similar implements.
It’s all too easy to set such tools to one side and forget about them. You should take preventive measures to ensure they aren’t accidentally manipulated (by yourself or your children).
For the safest results, remove batteries and unplug tools from outlets any time they are not in use.
5. Only Hire Licensed and Insured Professionals
When you do encounter projects that are beyond your skill set, you’ll want to take care to hire the right professionals. In addition to asking around for referrals, it’s also wise to verify the credentials of the people you consider.
Find out if the company is insured or if the coverage is adequate. Make sure that the contractor you wish to hire has workers’ compensation and general liability insurance when it comes to accidents on the job.
If someone says he or she isn’t licensed or insured, and offers to give you a discount as compensation, you should politely decline. It’s not worth the risk.
Keep Your Family and Home Safe
A home-improvement project is never worth placing yourself or your family at risk. Only take on projects yourself that you know you can reasonably handle on your own.
In high-risk matters, it’s always advisable to call in a professional. Safety should be your number-one priority.
Article Submitted By Community Writer