There is nothing more satisfying than seeing a job well done, executed and completed by oneself and successfully so. Sure, do-it-yourself jobs are great ways of getting things done around the house, your way, at your pace and also whilst saving quite a good chunk of money. But DIY does have its pitfalls and avoiding them is key to adding on to the satisfaction of that job well done.
One of the most alarming facts associated with DIY is the number of casualities that jobs around the home generally tend to procure. Anybody working in a casualty department can confirm this. Injuries connected with improper use of tools, machinery, equipment and chemical solutions are common, as well as accidents occurring from slippery floors, improper safety gear, disorderly working methods…. The list goes on, and in a bid to help you avoid unpleasant DIY disasters, here is a list of important things to keep in mind.
– Before embarking on a do-it-yourself job ask an expert for advice. Don’t be ashamed to ask the ironmonger how a product is used, or how a specific tool is used or what it is actually intended for. Ironmongery shop owners are pretty experienced in the use of their products and can suggest what you really need for your job better than anybody else can.
– Be sure your tools are in good working order. Don’t make do with flimsy tools. More importantly, always clean your tools and put them away carefully after use so that you will find them ready and available next time round.
– If you intend hiring machinery, do hire from a reliable company. Do not assume you know it all – if you are going to handle new machinery or equipment ask for instructions and what to watch out for during the manoeuvring process.
– Use protective accessories such as protective specs, protective gloves, safety shoes, safety harnesses. Don’t assume nothing will ever happen if you don’t. It is your personal responsibility to take care of yourself and of others helping you in your job. Where family helpers are concerned, especially if these are youngsters, it is even more of a responsibility to ensure their safety.
– If you intend using liquid solutions, do not assume that you can just shake that can or bottle and use it pronto. Some solutions are not to be shaken at all, whilst others need to be only stirred once opened. Exploding cans and bottles have been known to cause blindness.
– Protect the area you are working in from damage such as spattering paint, shedding of dust, etc. Sometimes it just takes an extra layer of plastic sheeting or some wet cloths to save the situation.
– If you are working with ladders, make sure these are sturdy, can withstand your weight and are properly propped up.
– Don’t rush into a DIY job but neither should you rush through it. Take things at a steady pace. Better to work an extra day at the job than try to rush things and end up with an injury or a botched job.
Ultimately, DIY will always remain high on many home-owners’ list of ‘hobbies’ Take your time, enjoy the experience, and then just relax and boast about till the next DIY job crops up.
Written by: Marika Azzopardi
Marika Azzopardi is a freelance writer and journalist. A frequent contributor to national English language papers and magazines, she writes about a bevy of topics including art, people and life in general. She is also the author of children’s books and short stories, delving into adult fiction from time to time.