Many homeowners prefer to do their home improvement projects themselves, either save money on labor or to ensure the task is done to their own satisfaction. But these projects can sometimes involve hazardous activities that can cause injuries. Here are some basic safety tips to keep in mind as you engage in your home improvement activities.
Have Appropriate Safety Gear on Hand
Your first purchase for your home improvement project should be safety equipment you will need to ensure you can perform the tasks at hand without risk of injury. These should include goggles, work gloves, solid-soled shoes, hardhat, cap, dusk mask, earplugs, and sunscreen. You should also have appropriate long-sleeved shirts and long pants to protect your skin while working.
Use the Right Tools for the Right Job
Acquire and organize the appropriate tools you will need to accomplish tasks. Make sure you know how to use these tools in the proper manner. Many hardware stores offer tool rental for customers who do their own home improvement tasks and can offer instruction on how to use various items.
Separate and Organize Your Work Area
It’s a good idea to separate your work area from the rest of the house with plastic sheeting. This not only alerts everyone in the household to the hazards of entering the area. It will also keep excess dust and dirt contained and away from the rest of the home interior. If you have children in your family, ensure that they understand that the work area can be dangerous, and they should stay out of the area until work is completed.
Keep Your Tools and Materials Organized
Things can get chaotic as the work progresses, which can lead to lost time looking for tools and materials, as well as additional stress. Keep your work area organized throughout the project. Store tools away when not in use. Bring materials to the work area, as you need them. Try to keep the work area uncluttered.
Provide Good Lighting and Ventilation for Your Work Area
Make sure you have adequate lighting in the work area to do tasks. If there is insufficient natural light, you can find various types of work lights to illuminate your area. Ensure your work area is well ventilated. You may be causing dust, sawdust, and other particulate matter into the air as you tear out some items and install other items.
Don’t Overdo Your Physical Exertion
Many home improvement accidents occur because the homeowner tries to do more than they can reasonably do. Take breaks throughout the day to rest. Always get someone to help when climbing a ladder. Use proper lifting technique for heavy items and enlist the help of other people when you need it. Stop work when you become fatigued, and don’t try to do more than your skill level will allow.
Know When to Call in the Pros
Some home improvement projects are easily completed by the average homeowner, and some require more skills and specialized equipment. Depending on your experience and skill level, recognize when a project is more than you should take on and hire a professional. Any electrical work can pose fire dangers, so you may need a professional. Similarly, installing appliances, such as water heaters, that require moving or installing a gas line may involve permitting and inspection to ensure they are installed correctly and meet safety standards. You should check your local building codes and consult with a professional.
Completing a home improvement project can save you money and give you a feeling of accomplishment. You can avoid many of the hazards of home improvement work if you follow these safety tips.