Homeowners can save money and time by handling some DIY jobs at home. Unfortunately, many forgo wearing protective gear and following safety tips that professionals consider second nature. DIYers should have a handful of protective equipment and follow safety tips before tackling jobs around the home.
Necessary Safety Gear for DIY Home Repairs
Even if you have the best tools, they become dangerous if you use them without safety gear. DIY safety gear should always be at the ready, right next to your cordless drill, screwdrivers, and saws.
All DIYers should have a pair of safety glasses in their toolboxes. Debris, dust and liquids can get into your eyes, resulting in painful scratches and other problems that require visits to the emergency room. The best safety glasses don't fog, and you can make them more convenient by adding a strap to them. Some safety glasses have LED lights in the frames to illuminate your projects.
Mask and Respirator
Having a mask and respirator helps keep dust, chemicals and other small construction particles out of your lungs. Many DIYers use masks when painting ceilings, working with drywall or doing a demolition. For the best protection, invest in construction-grade masks and pair them with your anti-fog safety goggles.
When you're doing work around the house, put on your safety boots. They should have strong toes that will protect your feet if you drop something heavy. If you have to do heavy-duty cleaning around your home, you might consider investing in rubber muck boots, too.
Having a collection of useful gloves makes all DIY projects safer. Your collection should include a box of latex gloves, strong gardening gloves, durable rubber gloves that cover your wrists and forearms, and leather gloves with reinforced palms and fingers. When you use gloves, you protect your hands from sharp equipment, nails, stains, paint and chemicals.
If you work with power tools or lawn equipment, wearing ear protection is critical. Many tools reach decibel levels that can cause long-term hearing damage. Wearing earplugs or muffs usually offers enough protection, so you don't have to spend a fortune on construction-grade DIY safety gear for your ears.
DIY Safety Tips
When you're finishing DIY projects, your goal is to finish without injuring yourself and the others in your home. Along with wearing safety gear, these DIY safety tips can help you avoid injuries and damage to your home and property.
Check for Lead Paint
If you live in an older home, it may contain dangerous lead paint. Before you begin scraping, drilling, or cutting your walls, it's wise to test your paint. The majority of homes built before 1960 have lead paint, and kits that immediately detect lead paint are inexpensive. Remember that lead paint could be in old furniture, trim work, and siding. If you find lead paint, hire an expert to remove it safely before you begin any DIY work.
Know Where the Switches and Shutoffs Are
Before you do any DIY electrical or water work, you must know where the master switches are. Homeowners often do small electrical work like replacing outlets or installing a light fixture. Prior to working with electricity, homeowners should know how to turn off electricity to those outlets and wires.
It's also helpful to know where water valves and the water main shutoff are, too. For example, if you have a Notion Sensor near a toilet and it alerts you to a leak, you'll need to turn off your water to repair the problem.
Invest in a Voltage Meter
Before working near electricity, it's helpful to know what wires are live. Your tool kit needs a voltage meter to check what could shock you. They are affordable and easy to use. Most importantly, they can save your life.
Practice Good Judgment
When working on home projects, safety is vital. Before you begin, get your tools, block the area to keep your children and pets away, and illuminate the space. Watch your YouTube videos and prepare yourself with the necessary knowledge. Take your time and don't skip steps to finish quickly. If you're working with a ladder (to clean your gutters, for instance), put your tools on a work belt so you don't have to climb up and down to get what you need.
Bring Projects to Your Worktable When Possible
To stay safe, bring your projects directly to your workbench. If you have to bring tools and safety gear to other areas for DIY projects, you're likely to forget something. When you return to your worktable to get more gear, you may leave the exposed wires, gas lines and water lines. This could create a potentially dangerous situation if your children or pets get into the exposed components.
Put Safety First for DIY Projects
Safety should be your priority when doing DIY jobs around the house. Take time to prepare for the projects so you prevent injuries and further damage.