Fixing and improving your home is something everyone wants to do. The current trend in home improvement is one of independence. People want to do things on their own terms. Perhaps it comes from stubbornness or frugality; it’s hard to say. One thing is for sure, do it yourself methods are in the mainstream now. There’s nothing wrong with wanting to put things in your own hands, but some things aren’t meant for laymen. Houses are full of concealed dangers that are just waiting to get you. Electrocution and physical injury are common things you’ll see in amateur DYI scenarios. Damaging your own body isn’t the only cause for worry. Due to lack of knowledge, you could mishandle something important and break it. Here are some examples of things you shouldn’t be handling.
1. Sink pipes that malfunction
Clogged pipes are an annoyance. If the Drano didn’t work, you might consider taking things into your own hands. After all, at first glance, it seems to be a pretty simple thing to do. Get a bucket and some wrenches and you’re good to go. Unfortunately, this isn’t the case. If you aren’t certain where the problem is, trying to fix it might be a bad idea. Dismantling pipes isn’t as easy as it sounds. They are pretty tricky to disassemble and even trickier to put back into place.
They are also often located right next to electrical components and machinery. You don’t want to break your dishwasher while fixing the sink. The garbage disposal is a pretty strong piece of equipment that shouldn’t be toyed with. Physical injury and electrocution aren’t out of the question. Especially since you will be constantly surrounded by water. Best to leave it to the plumbers.
2. Changes to walls
When re-designing your house, you’ll often be tempted to change the room layout. This might require removing or constructing new walls. After all, you might want more space for a larger floor plan. At first, it might seem like a relatively straightforward job. Don’t be fooled, though. Walls are nothing to be toyed with. Tearing down walls willy-nilly can cause major issues. If you’re unlucky, you could hit a load-bearing wall and bring the ceiling crashing down. This is a hefty price to pay for renovating your house.
Even if you get the right wall without any structural consequences, something else might hamper you. Walls aren’t too forgiving when they come down. They’re made of bricks and cement and these things can fall on top of you and cause serious injuries. It’s probably best to stick to changing the wallpaper. Alternatively, hire a renovation expert and some construction workers to get the job done.
Let’s say you have a spot in your room that is leaking when it rains. Leaks aren’t pleasant and they can cause water damage. It can drip onto important papers or electrical appliances and you are trying to avoid that. How difficult can it be to fix a leaky roof? Pretty difficult, if your main goal isn’t getting injured. Climbing onto high places is a risky venture on its own. Trying to fix things while there is a recipe for disaster.
Maybe you want to install some lead flashing to prevent those leaks. Tons of things can go wrong. The ladder you have could slip if you don’t set it up correctly. All roofs have slopes, so any wrong move will send you tumbling down and falling from a dangerous height. You don’t want to end up with broken bones because of a few drops of water. Why go through all that trouble when you can get professionals, like Midland Lead to do the job for you?
4. Installing lights
You might get the urge to switch up the lights once in a while. Maybe you’re switching to LED or something else entirely. You might also consider doing it yourself. Changing lightbulbs is simple enough, so why wouldn’t changing the fixtures be just as easy? A key difference is that you’re handling more than just a round piece of glass.
There are lots of wires to handle, each more complicated than the last. Mishandle just one of them and you’re looking at popped breakers and sparking outlets. Being forgetful is an enormous danger when handling fixtures. If you forget to turn off the live power when changing the lights, you’ll be at risk for electrocution. Opening walls to search for wires is going to be a lot more difficult for you than it would be for an electrician. It’s also going to be a huge mess.
DIY has taken the world by storm. Blogs will advise you to try things by yourself and they’ll do a mediocre job of advising you about safety. Some things are better left to trained professionals. A couple of bucks saved isn’t worth the potential dangers you will face. This doesn’t mean all projects are to be left alone, though. Things that don’t involve lots of construction, electrical wires and climbing should be fair game. It’s the little things that count, after all.
Liam Smith is a young and aspiring Australian blogger with a passion for everything related to home, design and lifestyle. He has a B.Sc. in Interior design and is an avid reader. Follow him on Twitter and LinkedIn.