There’s nothing wrong with wanting to handle some home repairs yourself. And for minor things like a leaky faucet, DIY repair is usually possible if you know what you’re doing. However, there are some home repairs you shouldn’t try to tackle yourself, no matter how handy you happen to be. Home repairs like the ones mentioned below are among those jobs best left to the pros.
Most Things Plumbing-Related
Other than changing some washers and maybe even installing a dishwasher, most plumbing jobs shouldn’t be DIY endeavors. For things like replacing old or leaky pipes or taking out an old toilet and getting everything set up for a new one, it’s best to seek professional assistance from a plumber to get the job done. With plumbing leaks, for example, the source isn’t always obvious. Professional plumbers have special equipment they can use to check for leaks in hidden areas like behind walls without the need to open spaces up unless a problem is found. The following tasks are also best left to experienced plumbers:
- Backed up sewer systems or septic tanks
- Signs of a leak that aren’t obvious (e.g., low water pressure, problems with mold)
- Installation of new plumbing during a remodel
- Water heaters that have burst or stopped producing hot water
You might be able to do something like changing an outlet yourself if you watch a how-to video. But anything more extensive presents possible hazards if you make a misstep, which may include the risk of an electrical fire. Hiring an electrician also means you won’t have to worry about headaches with possible code violations with new electrical installations and replacements. Ultimately, safety is the main reason to hire a qualified electrician to get things done.
Heating and Cooling System Repairs
HVAC systems are operating year-round, which means there’s the potential for something to go wrong. There are also a lot of parts and components involved with a heating and cooling system. For anything that involves more than a filter change, you’ll want to call on someone experienced with HVAC work to restore your indoor comfort. Also, some DIY repairs may invalidate any warranties that may still be in effect. In general, it’s best to call a trained technician for issues involving:
- Motors or fans not working
- Uneven heating and cooling
- Unusual operating noises
Visible weaknesses in your foundation have many potential sources. In some cases, cracks may be the result of a plumbing or drainage problem. Other times, foundation issues are purely structural in nature. Professionals have the tools and expertise required to determine what’s going with your foundation and how to best resolve the problem while minimizing disturbances to your property.
With the possible exception of fixing a few blown-off or loose shingles, roofing repairs are also something you shouldn’t be doing yourself. As is the case with foundation issues, roof problems are sometimes more extensive than anything you can see from a visual inspection.
Kitchen and Bathroom Repairs/Improvements
Sometimes, the need for constant repairs with fixtures and other things in your kitchen and bathroom inspires plans for a remodel. While making repairs, doing replacements, and improving these two frequently used spaces in your home can lead to fewer repairs and maintenance demands, it’s not the kind of work you’ll want to tackle on your own. Local contractors typically know how to secure required permits when necessary and what to plan for when updating a kitchen or bathroom.
It may seem like less of an investment to get things done yourself, but your savings potential can quickly go down the drain if things go wrong. And you may very well end up paying even more to get the work done professionally to correct any damage done with a DIY attempt. Keep in mind that if you choose the right expert for your needs, you’ll likely end up with results that will ultimately save you time and money.