Learn how to deal with home repairs and upgrades during the pandemic. What you have to do yourself and how you can get help when you need it. Use these tips to be sure.
It is obvious that if you stay home more because of the COVID-19 pandemic, more things will break in the house. More use tends to mean more damage from wear and tear.
You may be reluctant to let a service technician into your house at such a time, and it is true that when it all comes together, fixing things yourself can be exciting. Before doing any maintenance or repairs yourself, however, you should understand your limits. Sometimes it is safer to call in a technician who is taking appropriate precautions to prevent the spread of disease than trying to do home repairs yourself. Here’s how to do repairs yourself or consult the professionals during the pandemic.
When to do a job yourself
There are plenty of home repair and maintenance jobs out there that are easy enough to tackle yourself, even if you are a beginner at home repairing. For example, even if you don’t have a plunger or plumber’s snake, you probably can Use hot water and liquid soap to repair a severely clogged toilet.
To decide if you can work on a job, look for instructions online. If you can teach yourself the steps fairly easily, and don’t require special tools or technical expertise, you can likely get the job done even if you’re a beginner. For example, not much technical knowledge is required to change the cartridge in a sink faucet, change a shower head, change an outlet, or repair a running toilet. Read a few guides, watch a few videos, and really decide that you are comfortable and have the skills and safety equipment required before attempting a home repair.
Even so, you might be pleasantly surprised at the type of jobs you can tackle after doing some research. For example, replacing a light fixture is pretty easy and safe as long as you turn off the power on the breaker box. In fact, if you’ve already run cables on site, replacing a light fixture with a ceiling fan is pretty easy, although it’s a bit more involved.
Much routine household chores can also be done by yourself if you are ready. You can change your own HVAC filters. Maintain your own air conditioner, Clean up your own gutters, and Check your own weatherstrip. If equipment failure occurs, you should try to troubleshoot the equipment yourself before calling a professional for repair. Sometimes you can simply repair a defective device yourself.
When to call a service technician
You may not want to call in a service technician during the pandemic, but many home repairs may require you to do so. It is certainly worth wondering if you can live with a problem until a stay at home or lockdown order is lifted. However, you should also know that home repair professionals are typically considered essential and likely to work, even if those jobs are on the spot. If something breaks in your home that you can’t fix, you should call a service technician to fix the problem. This is especially true if it cramps your lifestyle massively or can further damage your home.
For example, most device failures make it difficult to live comfortably. If you can’t fix your broken refrigerator or washing machine with a little web-based troubleshooting, take advantage of yours American Home Shield® Home Guarantee and plan a service visit.
Know your limits when it comes to home repairs. While repairing a leaking faucet or changing an outlet or faucet may be easy enough to tackle them yourself, most plumbing and electrical work is best left to the professionals. With installation, there is a possibility of water damage if you make a mistake, and with electrics, you can get a nasty shock if you don’t know what you’re doing.
Other tasks that should be left to professionals include anything that involves repairing or replacing gas pipes or garage door springs, as both can be dangerous. Avoid doing anything on the roof or cutting trees – both of which are safest when left to the professionals. Any job that involves climbing a ladder can be dangerous. If you want to do chores like cleaning gutters yourself, use ladder stabilization equipment and let someone hold the base of the ladder for you.
Safety comes first
If a service technician comes to your home during the pandemic, follow the appropriate precautions. You should wear both masks and try to keep a distance of two meters between you and the person repairing. When booking a service appointment, you can ask if the technicians are wearing masks and what other precautions they are taking to prevent the spread of disease.
To avoid being in an enclosed space with the technician, you may want to go into another room or go all the way outside while it’s inside your house. If you can’t, at least open your windows for ventilation. Clean and sanitize the area where the technician worked after leaving and sterilize frequently touched surfaces.
When a pandemic does break out, you need to carefully consider whether it would be worth your while to have a repair professional come to your home. It is relatively safe to have necessary repairs done if you follow the precautions. However, being able to do the repair yourself will save you money, time, and stay as safe as possible.
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