2 DIY Mishaps You Want to Avoid
You never know what life has in store for you – but you certainly can prepare for the worst while hoping for the best. Nowadays many people are getting into DIY since there is so much free information available online. This can be costly to you in a number of unexpected ways if you’re not well prepared.
Here, I’m going to talk about two common disaster scenarios people come across when doing DIY projects, and how you can avoid them! If you recognise yourself at all here, be warned, and take caution before making an expensive or dangerous mistake.
● Making a costly mistake
The disaster scenario:
You painted your baby’s nursery, built a table once or fixed some broken cabinets and now you’re feeling like a DIY expert. Your tool shed is looking well-stocked, you’re on a first-name basis with the guys at B&Q so you figure it’s time you tackle some bigger challenges. You may want to take a breather and slow down a little.
One of the biggest mistake DIYers make when they’re a bit inexperienced is trying things beyond their skill level. So, let’s get back to the overconfident amateur home improvement specialist and see what happens in this disaster scenario.
Your kid is complaining about cold air coming through their bedroom window. No problem! The double glazing seems to be broken, you’ll just have to replace the pane. It’ll be a quick job, done in an afternoon (you think).
24 hours and a stern discussion with your wife later, you sheepishly call the nearest window company at hand. Yes, the window is broken. How can you tell? The tool you were using got stuck in it. How exactly? You just come and have a look, it’s still there now! How much do you reckon it’ll be?
How to avoid it:
Want to avoid forking out hundreds of pounds for a brand new window when you could have simply had the panes replaced by a professional? Get some professional advice. Of course, this can be a bit daunting since double glazing salesmen have a lousy reputation, but these days there are many things you can do to protect yourself against rogue tradesmen of all kinds.
The first and most important step to take is to do your research – what exact problems are you facing, and what are the usual remedies for your issue? Get as much information online as possible.
Next, ask friends and family for recommendations. These are invaluable as they will offer their experience and opinion which will help you decide who to choose. Following this, the best course of action is to compare online reviews – slightly less trustworthy but accomplishes the same thing.
Finally, compare quotes from multiple providers and take your time. Don’t let yourself be pressured into signing anything without thinking about it for a few days. Big jobs such as window replacements, roofing or garden design are expensive and worth taking your time with.
● Hurting yourself
The disaster scenario:
Whether in the short or long-term, shoddy DIY jobs have been known to send people to the emergency room, or leave them with chronic pain from lifting something incorrectly or slipping on an uneven surface. Been DIYing for a while and haven’t hurt yourself! Don’t feel invincible yet…
It’s the middle of winter and you’re bored. There’s nothing on TV, you’ve read all your favorite home improvement blogs and you’re itching for a project. Your partner has barred you from all interior design tinkling so you decide to venture outside. A garden design project! Your partner’s all for it, if it’ll get you out of the house…
After carefully surveilling the area, you realise there’s an old dead tree at the back of the garden metaphorically gathering dust that could do with being pulled out. It’s expensive to hire someone to do that, and you’ve seen how they do it. Surely you could pull this thing out yourself, right?
Not really. This is a very common DIY error – taking on a job that’s too big in scope and requires more effort than you’d want to put in, but you didn’t know that when you started. So you start trying to unearth this big tree and get stuck in.
This is when you put your back out. Instead of spending a brisk Saturday afternoon happily digging and prodding away in the back of the garden, you’re flat out on your back staring at the ceiling. Lovely!
How to avoid it:
Do. Your. Research. Watch as many videos as you possibly can about how to properly do a task before attempting to do it yourself. Read stories of people doing it online and see whether this task is appropriate for your level of skill and fitness.
Again, asking friends and family for advice is beneficial. It’s likely someone in your circle has attempted something like this in the past so before rushing into anything, talk about your project and get some second opinions.
If you’re dead set on doing an arduous DIY project yourself, make sure to warm up appropriately and some some stretching before you begin to avoid injuring yourself. You’ll also want to buy appropriate protective gear like heavy duty gloves for carrying panes of glass for windows, dust masks for airborne particles or a hardhat if you’re walking under anything unstable.
There are plenty of steps you can take to avoid regretting your decision to take on a DIY project. Best to take precautions and prepare well, so you don’t get turned off the idea completely. Doing DIY is popular for a reason! It can save you money, be very fun and teach you valuable skills. So don’t hurt yourself or make a costly mistake, or you may never want to DIY again.