Stay safe when com­plet­ing home im­prove­ment projects

The Progress-Index - At Home - - NEWS -

Fi­nally fix­ing that loose step? Plan­ning to use power tools? Do­ing your own home re­pairs and projects can feel em­pow­er­ing, but if done im­prop­erly, it can be dan­ger­ous too.

Last year, one-third of DIYers re­ported in­juries while work­ing on a home im­prove­ment project, yet 77 per­cent ad­mit they’ve skipped wear­ing the proper pro­tec­tive gear.

“What­ever your ex­pe­ri­ence level, you need to use cau­tion when mak­ing re­pairs or do­ing gen­eral home main­te­nance,” says Lou Man­fre­dini, host of House Smarts TV and home im­prove­ment con­trib­u­tor on NBC’s ‘The To­day Show.’

Here are some tips from Man­fre­dini to en­sure you are safe when com­plet­ing com­mon DIY tasks.

• Up­dat­ing the front door: Want to add some piz­zazz to your home? Con­sider re­paint­ing the front door. With a lit­tle sand­ing, prim­ing and a new coat of paint in a bold color, you can change the en­tire look of your home. Just make sure you wear a proper res­pi­ra­tor while sand­ing, and use ap­pro­pri­ate pro­tec­tive eye­wear.

• Mow­ing the lawn: Be­fore mow­ing, take time to in­spect for items ly­ing on the ground. Sticks and stones can break your bones -- par­tic­u­larly if the blade of the mower picks it up and throws it at high speed from un­der the mower’s deck. When do­ing yard work out­side, help pro­tect your eyes with safety eye­wear like ForceFlex MAX Flex­i­ble Safety Eye­wear.

• Easy bath­room fix: Re­plac­ing a bro­ken ce­ramic tile is easy if you fol­low th­ese steps. Re­move all the grout around the tile. Then use a chisel to re­move the tile. Con­sider wear­ing proper safety eye­wear. Clean up the sur­face and then in­stall the new tile with tile ad­he­sive. When that dries, re­grout the new tile. When tack­ling this project, make sure you wear a good pair of gloves, as bro­ken tile pieces can be sharp.

• Fix­ing up fur­ni­ture: Refin­ish­ing fur­ni­ture is a great way to re­vive old items. But re­mem­ber, some fin­ish­ing prod­ucts may be harm­ful to lungs and skin. Al­ways read the safety in­for­ma­tion for the prod­ucts used. Wear a good pair of qual­ity painter’s gloves, pro­tec­tive eye­wear, and

an ap­pro­pri­ate res­pi­ra­tor.

• Us­ing power tools: Any­time you use power tools like a cir­cu­lar saw, sander or a com­pres­sor, you should pro­tect your ears. Dis­pos­able foam ear plugs, such as those from 3M TEKK Pro­tec­tion brand, are easy to use and can help re­duce the noise level, which is im­por­tant, as noises over 85 deci­bels can lead to per­ma­nent hear­ing loss over time. Also con­sider safety pro­tec­tive eye­wear when us­ing cir­cu­lar saws, sand- ers and other power tools.

• Adding In­su­la­tion: Adding in­su­la­tion to your home is one of the best ways to in­crease its en­ergy ef­fi­ciency. Whether its fiber­glass batt in­su­la­tion or blown-in cel­lu­lose, the added com­fort will be ap­par­ent. For safety, wear pants, a long sleeve shirt and eye, hand, and lung pro­tec­tion, such as the 3M TEKK Pro­tec­tion Sand­ing and Fiber­glass Valved Res­pi­ra­tor.

More DIY safety tips and project in­for­ma­tion can be found at

When it comes to your health and safety, don’t take chances. Do­ing it right means do­ing it safely.


Do­ing your own home re­pairs and projects can feel em­pow­er­ing, but if done im­prop­erly, it can be dan­ger­ous too.

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