For do-it-yourselfers, there is always a new project.
But with home improvement comes safety risks. Projects that involve nail guns, knives, electrical saws and other powered hand tools combined with hazards from chemical vapors and dust, flying and falling objects, loud machinery and working in tight spaces or on ladders can be downright dangerous. In the UK, over 200,000 people are treated in hospitals from DIY projects each year; and in the US, the State of Home Safety in America report puts that number at over 300,000.
HomeAdvisor recommends that DIYers get familiar with tool safety and other resources before starting a project.
Here’s some safety equipment that can help:
First Aid Kit – Keep One Handy:
A pre-packaged kit that contains bandages, gauze, scissors, alcohol, cold pack, eye wash, gloves, tweezers and moreis essential, just in case.
Practical: Compact First Aid Kit
Premium: First Aid Station
Climbing Ladders? Working with Water? Wear Slip-Resistant Shoes:
Ladder falls from under 16 feet comprise more than 90% of all construction accidents, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, but these accidents often have serious consequences. To minimize the chance of ladder falls or slips wear shoes with wide outsoles and good traction. If you’re working on a roof, a fall protection kit should be considered.
Practical: Athletic Work Shoe
Premium: Steel Toe Anti-Slip Work Boot
There are Gloves—and There Are Cut-Resistant Gloves:
For every type and range of “honey-do” project, from constructing a deck out of a kit to slapping a fresh coat of paint on the old one, you’ll want a work glove that protects your palm and fingers. A range of gloves that offer higher abrasion and tear resistance (along with breathability and dexterity) can be found here.
Practical: Light Task II Gloves
Premium: Light Task III Gloves
Fit Eyewear to the Task:
Sealed eyewear is ideal for protection against air-borne debris, sun, wind and impact. Sealed “Over-The-Glasses” (OTG) goggles provide protection for wearers of prescription glasses. Models with extended wraparound frames improve protection and peripheral vision. Anti-fog lenses help preserve vision when exertion, heat and humidity exist.
Practical: Clear Glasses with Anti-Fog Coating
Hearing Protection: It’s Ear-Replaceable:
Assault on the ears comes from many sources of high-volume machinery: lawnmowers, chain saws, shop vacuums, electric saws and other power tools. For the protection you need should you choose an earplug or earmuff? The short answer is, in most cases, either one will do the job.
Practical: Multiple-Use Earplugs
Premium: Wireless Earmuff
Hard hats are mandatory on industrial worksites, so why not at home? If you think it’s too hot to wear one, opt for a vented bump cap, a baseball-type cap with a thermoplastic liner that will protect you against minor bumps and scrapes while keeping it cool. For protection against falling objects, nothing short of a hard hat will do, but choosing one with adjustable suspension points will keep you more comfortable than you might think.
Practical: Bump Cap
Premium: Hard Hat with Padded Sweatband
Breathe Easy with Respiratory Protection:
Painting a car in the garage, spraying a new coat of stain on the deck or applying a new bead of adhesive on the woodwork can release hazardous chemicals within vapors, mist and dust. Reduce exposure to airborne contaminants with respiratory protection that’s comfortable, ergonomically designed and effective.
Practical: Half Mask Facepiece
Premium: Full Face Respirator