Which jobs should you leave to the experts?Which jobs should you leave to the experts? Last updated: 15th Mar 2023 2023-03-15T11:28:56+00:00 2023-03-15T09:46:59+00:00
The days are getting longer and the weather’s getting better - so people’s thoughts naturally turn to a spot of DIY. Sheds get unlocked, power tools charged up and DIY stores get busy.
We love a bit of home improvement, but not all jobs are destined to go smoothly. Some jobs are riskier than others, so join us for a look at the jobs it’s best to leave to a professional.
It takes plumbers over a year to qualify, so it’s worth approaching your pipework very carefully. Professionals often get called in to fix DIY problems from over-tightened fittings and the wrong pipe glue to cross-threaded fittings and relentless leaks.
Even if you’re willing to fettle the outside tap, though, you should leave your gas appliances well alone. As well as gas leaks, appliances like boilers, gas hobs and stoves can lead to carbon monoxide poisoning. So don’t even think about it - this is a job for a Gas Safe engineer.
Even a seemingly-simple job - like replacing a light fixture or a socket - can be much trickier than it looks. A bodged job could just trip a circuit breaker or pop a fuse. But there’s also the risk of shocking yourself or a family member, or starting an electrical fire.
Using a qualified electrician means any work will be done according to government rules and regulations. As well as a safe installation, it can also be much easier to sell your house with an electrical certificate.
Up a ladder
The humble ladder is one of the most unexpectedly dangerous items in the home. It’s easy to see why. Balancing on a Jenga-tower of ladders and planks to paint the top of the stairs. Propping up a ladder on wobbly ground to clear a gutter. Or simply reaching out and losing balance.
They’re easy mistakes to make - which is why professional tradespeople are so careful about working at height. They’ll often use scaffold, access platforms, tethered ladders, safety harnesses and more.
Our recommendation? Don’t risk it. Jobs at height are always best handled by professionals who’ve got the kit and the expertise to handle it safely.
It should go without saying, but it’s a terrible idea to remove structural parts of your house if you don’t know what you’re doing.
So taking out load-bearing walls, replacing joists, adding doorways are all jobs that need serious thought before breaking out the sledgehammer. If you’re not a professional, that might mean talking to a renovation expert or structural engineer.
And as well as causing serious damage to your home, the sting in the tail for many over-enthusiastic DIY-ers is that home insurance won’t normally cover structural damage carried out by an amateur. So it's worth checking with your home insurer what you're covered for, or better yet, get a professional in to do the job.
Plastering is an art. It takes years of practice to perfect your mix and develop the steady hand needed for flawless plastering. And if you haven’t done it before, your odds of ending up with a wall that looks like it’s covered in porridge are sky high.
But that’s not the only risk: using the wrong type of plaster in an old house can cause serious damp problems. So don't take the risk, and get an expert in to do the job right.
So this spring, give your job a bit of thought before you dive in. And if you’re in any doubt at all, it’s probably time to turn to an expert.