The spirit of all do-it-yourself repair projects is the idea that with education and the right tools, homeowners are capable of handling many repairs themselves. The downside to this idea is that homeowners may become overconfident. A big part of learning how to do-it-yourself is learning where to draw the line between what you can do and what a trained expert should do for you. Here are five home repairs that require an experienced technician.
Putting An Addition On Your Home
You saw a video on television and thought it looked pretty easy to knock down a wall for renovation. You didn’t realize until too late that the wall was load-bearing, though. Or you may be a little handy with electrical wiring and decide to wire a new room yourself.
The problem with each of these scenarios is that though you may think you are saving money by doing these jobs yourself, you don’t have the training of a professional to do them. Things can go wrong after the fact in ways you never intended or imagined. In the case of an untrained electrical installation, you could actually burn down your own home. Or you could be fined several thousand dollars for not putting in an installation according to code when you try to sell your home. Save the future headache and let a pro do the job.
Cutting Down Your Own Trees
You have a power saw that you like, and a big tree that you don’t. How easy would it be to use the one to get rid of the other?
Cutting a tree at the wrong angle can make it fall where you don’t expect, either on yourself or your neighbor, or someone’s valued home. Professionals who cut down trees are highly respectful of the danger they pose. They will often work in teams, cutting down a large tree limb by limb before attempting to remove the trunk. They also use specialized equipment that you probably don’t have.
Major Plumbing Repairs
Replacing or caulking a length of pipe below a sink is easy enough for a do-it-yourselfer to do, but when it comes to major leaks in a home, particularly if you can’t find the source, you should call a plumber.
Water leaks can be very deceptive. They may seem as if they are coming from one location, when actually they are originating from somewhere else. Even plumbers get frustrated over this sometimes.
The other part of plumbing work is that it often involves squeezing into small corners and loosening rusted parts. A job that you thought would only take a few hours can easily turn into several days of repairing your repairs.
You want to install your own skylight or replace a damaged chimney. Aside from the obvious problem of walking around on a slanted roof, there are other good reasons not to try this job. Your roof is the major source of protection for all of the structural elements of your home. A single small breach in your roof can allow a leak that can go undetected. Leaks in your roof can develop mold, and they can damage insulation, interior walls, and other important structural materials in your home. Amateur homeowners are not likely to know how to properly secure and weatherproof these types of installations. Though it will cost more money, let an experienced professional do the job.
Replacing Gas Appliances
Replacing your own gas dryer or hot water heater can be dangerous. Gas appliances that aren’t properly connected can emit a tiny leak. That’s all it takes for carbon monoxide to enter your home. Even more frightening is the possibility of blowing up your own home.
We would all like to save money, but repairs like these can cost much more money in the long run and even endanger lives. Be smart and call a professional for help.