DIY (do it yourself) culture has taken off in the past few years. Pinterest is full of ideas and tips, Instagram has accounts just dedicated to DIY videos, and HGTV has been the driving force behind getting this movement going. As a custom home builder, it’s great to see homeowners take an interest in construction. However, there are some tasks that are better left to the professionals. DIYing certain things can be dangerous and costly if they go wrong. So here are a few tasks that amateurs should never DIY.
Plumbing is a grey area for DIYing. Handy people can usually fix things like leaky pipes or install a new showerhead. However, plumbing is vital to a home. Improperly done plumbing work can cause massive leaks, home fires from improper smoldering, and gas leaks from sewage pipes. Water leaks are some of the most common home issues and also some of the most costly. So anything beyond tightening a pipe or installing a new faucet call a professional.
A home’s electrical system is one of the key systems that keep it running. There are strict guidelines and codes when it comes to electrical work and there are good reasons for that. Improperly done electrical work can lead to power outages, electrical fires, and more. A few small things can be DIYed like swapping out light fixtures or installing a dimmer switch. Electricians go through years of training, so unless you are a licensed electrician hire a professional to do any electrical work.
Open concept is all the rage these days, and it’s easy to see why. People are tearing down walls in their home to achieve this layout style. However, some walls in homes are load bearing. A load-bearing wall is one that helps support the structure of the home. There are ways homeowners can get a rough idea if a wall is load bearing or not, but before demoing anything, make sure you get a professional to assess it. Removing a structural element without proper support can have detrimental consequences, so leave it to the pros.
One of the most common things people DIY is tile setting. It can take a little practice to get it right, but it’s one of the easiest things for amateurs to do on their own. Go ahead and DIY your backsplash, but when it comes to tiling bathrooms it’s best to leave it to the professionals. Showers and baths require special waterproofing methods to keep moisture from getting inside your walls. If water gets inside, it can lead to mold and rot. Always leave waterproofing to professionals!
Most homeowners have heard about asbestos. It’s become the boogeyman of home renovations. Asbestos was a popular building material in the past, however, it was later found out that inhaling asbestos fibers can lead to lung cancer, lung scarring, and other respiratory issues. If you live in an older home, make sure you check to see if you have asbestos before removing walls, flooring, or other elements.
The DIY culture has led to more people gain valuable knowledge about their homes and construction. Doing some things yourself is also a great way to save money if you’re on a budget. There are limits as to what people can and should do though. Start off on smaller tasks before tackling larger ones. Always seek the help of a professional before doing any of the tasks above though. Doing so on your own can be extremely dangerous, and cause you to hurt yourself and your home. If you have any questions feel free to contact us!