Adulting 101: The fundamental dos and don'ts of home DIY

Jul 14 2018, 4:46 am

There are two kinds of people in this life: The ones who DIY and the ones who don’t.

You never know when you’re going to have to channel your inner Mike Holmes and do a quick fix on an item in your home. Accidents happen and work needs to be done, but it’s important to stay calm if you do have to take matters into your own hands.

Ideally, you’ll be able to wait until a professional can assist you. So, to help you avoid making any bad decisions, we’ve rounded up a list of some of the things you might need to know before attempting to DIY.

Do: Retrieve a ring from the drain

Taking your rings off before you use the sink is one of those things you mean to do, but it’s also easy to forget. If your ring falls down the drain, you can safely get it back by going under the sink and taking apart the easy to unscrew trap. Kitchen sinks all have a trap (“J” or “U” bend pipe), this holds water to stop noxious gases entering the house. If you need to do some DIY plumbing, be sure to put a bucket underneath.

Do: Check the batteries before you replace your thermostat

It’s easy to jump to the conclusion that your thermostat is broken if it displays signs like a low background light or flashing light. In any case, it’s best to replace the batteries first to discover if that is the cause of the problem. If you’re taking out old batteries, make sure to add replacements immediately to avoid having to reprogram the thermostat.

Do: Remove mould from your washing machine

Have you noticed a smell coming from your washing machine when you remove items? This could be due to a build-up of mould on the inside of the drum. However, it doesn’t mean that your washing machine is ready for the scrap heap and you can generally resolve the issue by getting tablets that kill mould and odours and running the machine on a hot water cycle.

Do: Adjust oven temperatures

If your oven temperature is offset you can recalibrate it using an oven thermometer. Simply set the thermometer in the oven and if it doesn’t match the temperature setting on your oven, you can find instructions for making adjustments in the user manual which would have come with the appliance. You can also find them online by searching the appliance model number.

Don’t: Install a dishwasher

Before you even consider installing a dishwasher, think about all of the elements involved; water, electrical, and drainage lines, which need to be hooked up. It’s best for your safety and the state of your home, to call a trained specialist to help you with this. Handy Appliances, Vancouver’s only full-circle appliance retailer offers installation when you buy directly from them, saving you a lot of hassle.

Don’t: Hook up electrical items

It might sound obvious but if you’re not an electrician, you really shouldn’t be working with electricty. Overloading power can mean breakers flipping, outlets sparking, and repairs down the road. It’s not safe if you don’t know what you’re doing or forget to turn off the live power. Let’s be real, there are too many safety and fire concerns for this to be done safely if you’re not a professional.

Don’t: Put aluminum foil on the stovetop

You might think that you’re keeping your appliance clean by putting down a layer of aluminum foil in the bottom of the oven, but aluminum is combustible. Putting it over a gas or electric burner can lead to it burning and the vapour is not something that should be inhaled. Foil can melt on induction stove stops and fuse to it. If you line the bottom of your oven with foil it can melt, resulting in damage to the product, electrical shock, and fire hazards.

Don’t: Knock down walls

Sure, in theory knocking down walls might sound like a fun way to spend your DIY day. But it could be a load-bearing wall. Knocking it down yourself could put your home in danger of being structurally unsound or even collapsing. Please, get someone qualified (with a hard hat) to do this for you.

See also

Thankfully, you don’t have to deal with the stress or messy side of DIY when you buy your appliances from a company that handles all of that for you. Handy Appliances has a parts department and offers installation on products which are purchased from the store.

And if you need an appliance serviced you can book an appointment via Handy Appliances – even if you haven’t purchased the item from the retailer.

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