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Helping Hand - Help & Advice

DIY Tips and Advice For Your Safety

DIY enthusiasts are costing hundreds of millions of dollars in medical bills by putting up wobbly scaffolds, touching live wires and shooting themselves in the hands and feet with nail guns. If you are going to carry any work in your home such as painting your house, make sure you have the equipment, "You don't have to fall very far to have a life-changing accident."

Here are some Do's and Dont's we feel you should be considering before taking any DIY tasks in your home or business.

DIY Do’s

Think SAFE – When you feel there is a DIY task you may wish to carry yourself, you should prepare all required tools, materials and think about any potential dangers there may be and what steps you may need to take to prevent them, not just think, do eliminate all those dangers before you do anything else.

Where applicable read the Instructions - More often than not, most people make the mistakes of thinking it looks easy, and ignore all instructions that are there to prevent accidents, those instructions are there for a reason and come from years of experience gathered by manufacturers. Therefore following the instructions on any parts and materials will make the DIY job a lot easier, quicker to follow and will mean you will most likely get it right the first time around.

Safety Wear - When using tools whilst performing a DIY task that carries any element of risk, it is essential that you make sure you are fully protected. Protection will mean you stay safe and do not risk any injuries that may be caused to your body.

A full range of safety wear is available in most hardware stores & via the internet if tasks are not urgent for their delivery. We have compiled a small guide of what to buy -

  • Safety goggles should always be used when using any type of power tools.
  • Face masks are a must when drilling, and when working with dusty walls.
  • Using ear plugs when carrying any job with noisy tools to protect your ears.
  • Protective gloves & overalls will help protect you from many general flying items & contact with harmful chemicals or substances.
  • Safety footwear with steel toecaps will protect your feet.
  • Visibility jacket and stickers on all tools will aid people seeing your movements in the dark.
  • Never use tools that are not 100% damage free.

Lighting – Working in a poorly lit area does lead to DIY disasters, especially when anything your tasks involving electric. Make sure that you can see properly before you carry any task.

Tool Check – At all times when you carry any DIY job, do not rely on your previous job being ok, always check that any tools you are going to use are in good working order before you start any DIY job. Making sure that any safety guards are attached correctly and that the power cable is in good order, plugged in correctly with no wires exposed will prevent any unnecessary accidents.

DIY Don’ts

Loose or Baggy Clothing – At all times avoid wearing anything that may get caught up in any electrical or mechanical power tools.  These include clothing, jewelery and even shoes with laces not tightened properly.

Alcohol, Drugs or Being Tired – Doing anything DIY related while under the influence of drugs, alcohol or even feeling tired can lead to devastating injuries that are avoidable. Make sure you are not under the influence of anything that stops you from being fully awake when doing any DIY job.

Examining Power Tools – Before checking any power tools, changing bits/parts make sure that you unplug any power sources to them.

Blind Drilling - More often than not drilling in walls can result in hitting water pipes, gas pipe and electrical wiring. If you are not sure, then refrain from Blind Drilling, also you can invest in a wire and stud detector from your local DIY store before you start drilling, as it will be beneficial for future DIY projects and even for one project where you are not sure.

Don’t Ever Overreach - Over reaching can cause you to lose balance and fall, drop your power tools and this can cause great accidental damage to you and the surrounding.

Ventilation – Ventilation is very important to many DIY tasks. Ventilation is something DIY enthusiasts miss when doing anything that might include painting, adhesives and solvents when indoors. You must ensure the rooms are fully ventilated to permit lingering fumes to fully dissipate, therefore leave doors and windows open for as long as needed.

Being Organized – At all times before and whilst working, always take the time to ensure that working area is kept clean and tidy during the DIY projects you are undertaking, this will prevent any unsafe hazards.

Lifting heavy items – At all times note that it's important that you do not lift anything that is too heavy or awkward for you to carry, as many DIY enthusiasts miss calculate what they can or can't lift, this could result in back, pelvic, shoulder or knee injuries and therefore at any time if you can get assistance, then this should be your first choice.

Ladders – Ladder injuries are probably the highest amongst DIY jobs. and safety is a must to prevent those accidents caused by unsafe use of ladders every year.

Power Leads – Take extra care when using power tools with any Power cables, by ensuring that the cabling is unlikely to interfere with any other items that might be around the working area or get damaged etc. Ensure that the location of the cable is clearly visible and obvious to others, so eliminate it being a trip hazard before you do any work.

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