6 Home Repair Jobs You Should Never DIY

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We know this is going to lean slightly more toward the bonkers side of things, but we quite enjoy that moment we spot a home repair job crop up. There’s just something about being able to fix something ourselves; some sort of inexplicable and heartwarming value in it. The obvious winner is the money you save, but there’s also that badass feeling you get afterward and the fact you can brag about your handy work on Instagram. It gives us such a buzz. 

That said, there’s a lot of value to be had in knowing your limits. 

These days, you can go on YouTube and get a walk through on just about anything and that’s pretty enticing, we have to say. However, any time we feel slightly out of our depth and don’t know precisely how something is meant to be done, we drop the tools, flick the kettle on and promise ourselves not to mess with the issue. We don’t leave the problem, we just call someone else instead. 

To give you the truth, there is an underlying reason why we do this: nothing makes our cheeks turn a brighter shade of rouge than having to call a professional in halfway through a repair job we’ve totally messed up. We’d much rather admit our limits and get it done right first time than have to dial a contractor with one hand while we plug a leak we caused with our other hand. You can call sales assistant at your local store, but the clue is in the title; they’re salespeople, not plumbing experts, which is who you need for this kind of gig. 

To help you avoid this same mortified-embarrassment, we’ve pulled together a list of repair jobs you absolutely need to leave alone, no matter how easy those online tutorials make it look:

1. Pretty Much Anything Electrical

Changing a light bulb, that’s okay. So is swapping out a light fixture and maybe even a plug socket. But anything that goes beyond this, that’s a strict no-go area. That’s hire-a-pro territory, no ifs or buts. The problem is, it can seem so easy to get handsy in this area - you just turn off the electrics at the fuse panel and do whatever needs to be done - and the reason this is such a problem is: get it wrong and your house could go up like a non-safety match. That and electrical currents aren’t the nicest of wake up calls. It’s not just about safety, though. It’s the most important part, but it’s not the only thing. The other reason you should call in a pro is most states require you to hire a licensed electrician for anything that involves rewiring, which is for safety reasons so, actually, it is the only reason. 

2. Plumbing Requires Precaution

Once upon a time, plumbing might have been considered a DIY job. But that all changed when different types of pipes got introduced to the home. We’re talking copper pipes, PVC pipes, stainless steel ones and more. And that’s just the first speed bump in the road because once you’ve figured out what you’re looking at, you then need to know how to integrate those with whatever the law says is best right now. Ure, you could ask the sales assistant at your local store, but the clue is in the title; they’re salespeople, not plumbing experts, which is who you need for this kind of gig. 

3. Don’t Consider Anything Concrete 

All over the internet and TV you find websites and programs with DIY steps for fixing foundation problems. Most people need the tools it would take to do what needs to be done for DIY foundation repairs. Something to keep in mind as well is that a contractor may have to charge additional fees to work around or undo any attempted DIY repairs. If you aren’t sure what you are doing you could cost yourself a lot more money in the end.

A) Concrete can be dangerous work and B) concrete can cost you a sickening amount of money if you get it wrong. Trying to repair sinking foundations, uneven floors, cracked and buckled walls and that sort of thing are all common problems, but they’re all things you need to leave to people like Tiling is fine, as is laying a patio, but anything that is pure concrete should be left to those allowed to call themselves experts; anything that would need to completely be redone if you mess it up.

Foundation repair requires years of experience and special tools. If you have a problem with a basement foundation wall, bowed walls, or retaining wall, the wall anchors system is the solution that professionals can only do.  

4. Leaky Roof Isn’t Yours To Fix

This may come as a bit of a surprise, but the most common “I’ve bungled a DIY job, could you come and fix it please” issue is to do with leaky roofs. That’s because constantly reapplying caulk isn’t going to be enough to fix a leaky. Nope. What you’ll have instead is a big waste of caulk and a soggy attic, which is what we would call a disaster and why you should call in a professional - one with professional roofing materials. Sure, the odd tile or shingle can be done yourself, but even then you have to weigh up the element of risk and whether you’re cool with standing on the top of a tall ladder footed by your brother-in-law as you take on a steep roof. That’s what we thought. Check this guide to repairing a roof from beginning to end.

5. Garage Door Stopped Working

The main reason why your garage door stopped working is to do with the coil springs needing replacing or garage door repair. The good news is: you can pop onto YouTube and find a pretty epic tutorial on how to fix this problem. The bad news is: no YouTube tutorial is going to make this a safe job. The springs on something like a garage door are coiled so tight, you can get seriously injured - and we mean seriously injured - if you don’t know exactly what you are doing. It’s not just the springs going all sorts of crazy either, it’s the weight of the garage door crashing down, which is something even The Rock would want to avoid at all costs. To put it bluntly, even handy-people with years and years of experience under their belts will not go near the coils on a garage door. 

6. Forget About Gas Appliances

The last one our list is about as obvious as they come: gas appliances. This is because they can command a pretty hefty cost if something goes wrong. We’re talking gas furnaces, water heaters, ovens, dryers and those sort of things, in which any repairs that might be needed should be handed over to a qualified expert in a boiler suit. Fact. Why? Because no matter how cautious you might be, nothing is worse than an unnoticed gas leak. Nothing.

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