As a homeowner, you will want to tackle some home improvements DIY-style. There are plenty of tasks around the house that you can complete without hiring a professional contractor. With the right tools and safety precautions, you can handle upgrades and maintenance for a more comfortable and attractive home. From painting a wall to installing new countertops, no project is worth risking serious injury. Here are a few safety tips for DIY projects.
For home improvement projects, wear well-fitted clothing that isn’t likely to get caught or tangled. Keep long hair tied back. Avoid loose, baggy clothing and remove jewelry like watches and bracelets. These could potentially cause an injury if caught in the moving parts of power tools.
Safety Tips for DIY Projects Involving Electricity
Take precautions while working on equipment that uses electricity. Don’t use water to put out an electrical fire. Keep an appropriately-rated extinguisher nearby. When working with electricity, a voltmeter will come in handy. Make sure the component you are working on is disconnected from the electrical current by unplugging the device or turning off the breaker.
Use Tools Correctly
When you purchase a new tool, read the user manual so you know how to use it correctly. Don’t use any tool for a job it is not designed for. With corded tools, make sure it is turned off before plugging it into an outlet. Unplug power tools when leaving the room and keep them out of children’s reach. If using a knife or utility blade, always cut away from your body. Keep a well-stocked first-aid kit with you in an easy-to-access place.
Safety Tips for DIY Projects: Wear PPE
When working on a DIY home project, wear personal protective equipment (PPE). The kind of PPE depends on the task you are working on. Protective equipment includes safety glasses, gloves, dust masks, and steel-toe boots. Safety glasses protect you from airborne particles that can injure your eyes. The glasses should be tight-fitting and conform to the contours of your face. When painting or sanding, use an industrial-grade respirator to protect you from fumes and dust.
Inspect Your Tools Before Use
Before starting a project, check your power tools for damage. Maintain your tools and equipment according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Examine tools to make sure they do not have frayed cords or broken casings.
Some areas have tool libraries. If you decide to rent tools, have someone demonstrate the proper operation and ask them to include the instruction manual. In addition, check for a tag to see if the tool has been serviced and tested since it was last returned.
While there is satisfaction in completing a DIY home project, it is not without risk. Only attempt upgrades and improvements when you are well-rested and alert. Know your limits. Some projects are best left to the professionals. Hiring a pro may cost more, but will save time and you’ll avoid injuries.