Understanding when you can fix a home repair yourself and when you should hire a professional is important for a multitude of reasons. The factors you will be considering are time, money and safety of the job. The safety of the job always trumps every other factor to consider, if you are not 100% sure that you are safe to carry out a repair, then call a professional – it’s not worth the risk. So, we are going to take a look at some home repairs and discuss whether or not you should DIY or hire a pro.
We will start with an easy one – if you need a boiler repair, you should not do it yourself, unless you are a professional. So our advice on this one is always use a professional, for the sake of your own safety, as we previously mentioned.
Faulty boilers can cause a multitude of issues to your home and to your health if they are not fixed in good time. Boiler issues can lead to carbon monoxide leaks, someone that is extremely dangerous and potentially life threatening. You can also be at risk of water leaks which can damage the structure of your home and lead to damp.
You should look out for signs such as scorching/burning around your boiler, the smell of gas or fumes, or the pilot light burning a yellow flame. If you spot these signs, call a professional and get your boiler fixed as soon as possible.
Over time, paint and wallpaper on your walls, roof etc. will wear out and become damaged, stained and chipped. When this happens, you may be in need of repairing and redecorating these parts of your home. But is this a home repair you can do on your own? We think so. Painting and decorating with wallpaper is a job that you can do on your own if you have one of the most important factors – time. There will be a cost for the paint, wallpaper and tools etc. but this would not be a substantial amount, so the key factor is time. Particularly if you are painting, the likelihood is that it is going to take a long time.
Ensure that you have all the correct equipment, tape up sockets, cover your carpets and protect everything from paint and this is certainly a home repair that you can take on yourself.
Similarly to boiler repairs, trying to fix electrical components can be dangerous and a possible threat to life. There are many electrical issues that can crop up in your home, such as electrical surges, light switches not working, circuit overload and many more. Unless you are a professional yourself, attempting to fix electrics is a risky game that we would advise against.
If something goes wrong whilst trying to fix electrics you are at risk of electrocuting yourself in an extreme situation. You are also at risk of making the damage worse, and leaving yourself hiring a professional at a much larger cost than the initial problem would have been. Our definite advice on this one would be to call the professionals!
Windows are one of the most important parts of your home, for letting in light and keeping your warm and cool when you need them to. It may come as a surprise, but many window repairs are easy and cheap to solve. We’re not talking about damage to the glass, but more like functionality problems that you can fix with a bit of DIY.
For example, if you have sliding windows and they become stuck or are moving slower than they used to, this can be an easy fix you can do yourself. The likelihood is that if you have this problem, your mechanism is just dirty or rusty, so give it a clean and get some WD40 or any other lubricant on the mechanism and it should bring you back up to speed. Be mindful that some lubricants can be harmful to plastic, so make sure that you put it in the right place and don’t use too much.
As well as a slow sliding window, another common problem is air leaks in your windows, you may think this is something that would be difficult to amend, but you can actually DIY fairly easily. You can simply buy window seals and they are generally easy to install. A quick Google or search on YouTube should get you clear instructions on how to fix this problem and keep your home warm and energy bills down.
As with electrics and with boilers, most plumbing repairs are ones to leave to the professionals. There are many common plumbing problems such as pipe clogs, loss of water pressure or heat and many more. Now, there are some cases where you may just be able to tighten a valve to stop a leaking tap, but if we are talking about proper plumbing issues, these are for plumbers to amend.
If you try to fix something in your plumbing system and it is done incorrectly, just like with the electrics, you are putting yourself at risk of causing further and much more expensive damage.
Now we have given you some situations where you can DIY and some situations where you should call in the pro’s. Hopefully this gives you a better insight into things that are simple to fix, but the best way to think about it is always, unless you are 100% that it is safe, don’t do it yourself. Your health and home are worth more than spending some money on repairs.