Naturally, every project will have its own home improvement safety tips to follow, depending on the equipment being used and what exactly the labor entails. Here, however, we provide you with a few general guidelines to keep in mind. Read on for an overview – and be sure to do a little investigating on the specifics of what you’ll be doing, too, so as not to miss any important warnings or reminders.
Forget Fashion; Go Practical
First off, you want to make sure you’re wearing appropriate attire. Don’t dress to the nines – or anywhere close to it, for that matter. Think practical. Make sure your clothing is comfortable and allows you to move around easily (and quickly). Also, don’t wear clothing that is too loose or baggy – you don’t want to get caught on anything. Skip the jewelry and any other dangly accessories, too.
It’s usually a good idea to wear safety goggles to protect your eyes from flying debris, as well as ear plugs to protect your ears from damage while operating any loud power equipment.
Power Tool Tips
While we’re on the topic of power tools, there are a few things to keep in mind while operating one. Before you begin to operate a power tool, be sure to read through the instructions carefully. Look for the UL safety mark on your tools so you know they’re up to this globally-recognized standard. Don’t walk away from a power tool when it’s active - make sure it’s turned off and unplugged, and be sure it’s out of reach of any little ones who might wander by. Care for your tools by avoiding yanking their cords out of the electrical socket or carrying them by their cords, and keep them away from oil, heat and sharp edges. When they’re not in use, store your tools in a safe, dry place.
What You Need to Know About Ladders
If you’re working in any high spaces, a ladder will probably be involved. Most accidents with ladders are due to incorrect placement, so knowing how to arrange your ladder is really important. If you’ve got a ladder leaned up against a wall or other structure, follow the 4-to-1 rule. This rule states that for every four feet of ladder, you should place the ladder one foot away from whatever it’s leaning against. Also be sure to check out the instructions for the specific ladder you’re looking to use. Certain ladders are best for certain tasks, so try to find what is optimal for whatever it is you’re doing. Regardless, make sure your ladder is long enough and fully welded so it’s able to withstand the weight necessary for your project.
A First-Aid Kit, Always
You’ve got the right attire, you’re operating your tools correctly and you know what to do. Unfortunately, despite all your best efforts, accidents do still happen. When they do, be prepared with a fully stocked first aid kit. Know where it is and what’s in it so that when you’re in a rush to get what you need, you can do it as quickly as possible.
Be Aware of What’s Around You
Whether you’re working in a room on your own or in a busy building full of people coming and going, be aware of your surroundings at all times. Know where other people are – and who may be entering your workspace – and know what’s on the floor or just in your area in terms of power tools, sharp edges or anything else that could potentially cause an accident.
Doing DIY projects can be a lot of fun and can save you some money, too. But it’s far from worth it if an accident occurs. Minimize the risk by following these suggestions – they’re mostly common sense, but a small slip-up can have a heavy price. You can never be too careful, so make sure you err on the side of safety every time. Feel free to leave a comment if you have more DIY safety tips to add – and good luck!