DIY projects can be fun to do around the house and are certainly cost effective. They can even hone your skills and boost your confidence for future endeavors. With the popularity of home improvement shows encouraging audiences all over, it’s understandable how homeowners might think they can handle whatever challenge comes their way. While this is an empowering thought, there are some home repair jobs that you should never try to tackle on your own, regardless of how confident you are in your skills.
While you may be able to install something like a light fixture by yourself, you should never take on anything more complicated than that. There are simply too many ways to make mistakes, and these will be significant safety hazards. Attempting to do wiring yourself can easily lead to issues like buried wiring or improperly wired fixtures. Mistakes like these are fire hazards at best and could result in electrocution at worst. It generally isn’t even legal to do any electrical work more complicated than replacing a light switch or outlet cover, so just call in a professional electrician for these issues.
Speaking of dangerous home repairs, you should never attempt to fix any gas appliance yourself. This includes gas furnaces, ovens, dryers, or anything else in the house that could cause a gas leak if handled improperly. A gas leak in the home can result in numerous physical symptoms, not to mention the risks of a fire or explosion. Always have installation or repairs of these appliances done by trained professionals.
Out of the most potentially dangerous home repairs, plumbing is the one people are most likely to attempt themselves. After all, it’s easy enough to tighten a loose pipe or support it with clamps or tape, so why not see if you can do other plumbing jobs yourself? The answer is that a mistake with plumbing can easily become destructive.
Take frozen pipes for example. One can find plenty of advice online about how these are an “easy fix,” but this is often far from the truth. You may be able to thaw out pipes under the sink with hot cloths, hairdryers, or other methods, but rapidly freezing and defrosting pipes damages them over time and could result in them bursting. You’d be better off having a plumber come by before the cold weather sets in and having them use epoxy pipe lining to protect against wear and tear. This way you can avoid additional water damage that would be much more costly in the long run.
While structural work may not have the immediately obvious dangers of the other jobs described here, it’s still a bad idea to attempt yourself. This goes both for major repairs and renovating/remodeling.
Let’s say you’ve had significant damage done to your roof after a major storm, and you’re thinking you can save some money by repairing it yourself. The thing is, without the right knowledge, there’s basically no way you’ll save money. Replacing a few shingles is one thing, but a major roof repair or replacement is quite another. Most people don’t know what to look for as far as problems in a roof’s decking, and failing to fix underlying issues will just result in more costly damages in the near future. You’re always better off going with professionals who can install something like an Everlast II
Remodeling yourself can also have expensive consequences, even for something seemingly simple like the basement. You may think it isn’t really a “main part” of the home and any mistakes will be easy to cover up, but this can be a dangerous mindset. Framing basement walls improperly will likely result in mold buildup and eventually rotting, which could cause a collapse. For best results, limit your DIY projects to simple tasks that can’t damage the house or put the inhabitants at risk.