Home Improvement 101:
6 Ladder Safety And Protection Tips For DIY’ers
Improving your home bit by bit, one project at a time, will prevent having to spend an enormous amount of money making your house look brand new without having to reel in professionals to do it for you. Thus, many individuals opt for DIY home improvement ideas and tips in order to save a bit of money which can be spent on other projects. However, along with using power tools and paint brushes to make your home appear newer, you also often have to use a ladder to reach certain crevices – ensuring that you remain safe in the process.
If you’re an avid DIY’er who makes use of ladders on a regular basis, it’s important to keep the following ladder safety and protection tips in mind:
1. Ensure the presence of slip-resistant covers.
If you’re in the market for a new ladder or affordable height safety equipment, it’s best to choose a ladder that contains slip-resistant covers in order to prevent accidental slips and falls – especially if you tend to work on uneven surfaces. This will allow you to feel safer and more secure and extended heights, preventing your ladder from easily slipping underneath your feet. Remember, prevention is better than trying to find a cure.
2. Keep three points of contact.
Slips and falls can happen more easily than you can think, especially if you’re in a hurry and not thinking clearly. Thus, it’s important to keep both hand and one foot on the ladder or one hand and both feet at any given time. This will allow you to keep your balance and prevent an off-balance slip which could cause you to end up having to rush to the emergency room.
3. Never stand up straight.
Ladders weren’t meant for standing up straight at the top in order to reach any given point. This would mean that your ladder simply isn’t tall enough. However. Standing up straight will cause you to lose your balance and perhaps even cause the ladder itself to become off-balance. Not only is this a recipe for disaster, it’s also highly negligent if you’re not wearing alternative height safety equipment.
4. Avoid sudden moves.
If you feel your hands dropping a tool, let it be. Avoid any sudden moves which may cause your center of gravity to become off-balance, resulting in an instant fall from considerable heights. Remember, to keep three points of contact on the ladder to avoid losing your balance and the onset of any sudden moves.
5. Practice team lifting.
Certain ladders may be too long and bulky for one person to carry, with the possibility of back injuries occurring. Thus, if you do happen to have a larger ladder and you need to transport it from one side of your home to the next, always practice team lifting to avoid unnecessary injuries. At the end of the day, ladder safety and protection starts with the choices you choose to make.
6. Be vigilant of metal ladders near electrical exposures.
The last thing you want is being electrocuted for simply being situated too close to exposed wiring whilst standing on a metal ladder. It’s important to hire a professional electrician to attend to the electrical exposures before using a metal ladder and going about your DIY projects. If not, you may end up with more of a wakeup call than initially expected.
When it comes to implementing ladder safety and protection during certain DIY home improvement projects, it’s important to implement the above-mentioned work at height safety tips to ensure your own safety whilst trying to make your home look ‘improved’. At the end of the day, safety comes first – regardless of how determined you are to make your house a home.
Tom Trainor is the founder of Anchored.com.au, height equipment specialists based in Melbourne, Australia.