Home remodels are certain to have some inherent risks. Use of foreign tools, inexperience, and disorganization all surmount too what can become a disaster if you're not careful. The best contractors always follow these precautions, and you should too if you're tackling a DIY project or simply doing some of the prep work before the professionals arrive. Remember these ten safety tips when you start your remodel construction:
- Dress practically. Avoid wearing baggy clothing, jewelry, flip flops, or expensive outfits in or around the work site. Comfortable but fitting t-shirts, old shorts or jeans, and closed-toed work shoes are optimal while you're working. Don't wear anything that would upset you if it were to be damaged.
- Use safety glasses. If sawdust or other particles will be flying around in the work area, invest in a pair of safety goggles. They may not be comfortable but they will prevent you from serious injury. If you hire a contractor they will likely provide safety goggles while you're in the construction zone.
- Watch for ladder safety risks. If you must use a ladder, remember a few safety precautions to prevent injury. Always put the ladder on a flat, stable surface, and have a person either holding the base, or at least within earshot so if you fall they will hear you. For every four feet in height, move the ladder base one foot away from the wall.
- Take proper care of tools. All tools especially sharp or power tools, must be stored and cared for properly. Unplug power tools when they're not in use, and keep all tools off the ground to prevent others from stepping or tripping on them. Clean tools if necessary after use, and always store them overnight (even if you plan to use them the next day).
- Keep work space clean and clear. Try to stay as organized as possible. Nothing is more frustrating than losing a tool and having to stop work to find or replace it. If dirt or dust starts to accumulate, take some time to clean it before continuing. Inhaling dust can cause irritation, and will distract you from completing the job efficiently.
- Make space for others. If you're working with a partner or team, make sure they have enough space to work. Make sure everyone has a separate task to complete, and try not to interfere with others' tasks unless you need help. A crowded work space can be very distracting, even dangerous, so if you don't need to be in the construction zone, don't be.
- Have a First Aid kit. If someone is hurt on the job, you should immediately address the problem and treat it as best you can. Professional construction teams will carry their own first aid kits, so make sure you know where it is before you start working. If the injury is serious, call an ambulance calmly stay with the injured person.
- Understand the whole process before you begin. If you have installation instructions, read them. If you are starting a DIY project, search for instructional videos or ask for help before you begin. You don't want to end up midway into a project and realize you made a mistake that could be very difficult to fix.
- Work within your comfort zone. If you don't think you can handle a task, or are unsure on how to proceed, ask for help. It's much safer to let an experienced helper or professional manage the job than you trying and potentially putting yourself in a compromising situation.
- Keep children away from the work zone. Children should never enter a construction zone. They may pick up dangerous tools, inhale chemicals or dust, could trip on wires or run into ladders and paint cans. It's safer for them, and for you, to stay in another area of the house altogether.
Wanting more home improvement tips? Check out more of Naffco Flooring and Interiors' blog! Or visit our Pinterest page for ideas on remodel and DIY projects.