The free diy home improvement guide with answers to your questions on a wide range of do it yourself projects.

Before you start

Planning the task ahead can save time, money and, potentially, your well-being. We are often tempted to by-pass obvious advice, so just to refresh your memory ...

safety with ladders never use a chisel to open a tin

More haste, less speed ... Don't under-estimate how long a job will take. If you start to run out of time, don't be tempted to rush or take a short cut. Tiredness is a big factor in many accidents, so give yourself a break.

To the letter ... Read instructions and warnings, especially if you are using a piece of equipment for the first time. Make sure manuals are up to date - equipment changes all the time.

Don't be a hero ... If a job is too much, call in the professionals. Proving a point is little use if it puts you in hospital.

Right for the job ... Avoid 'making do'. Choose the right tools and protective equipment for the job. Don't wear loose clothing or jewellery, and tie back long hair, or put it under a hat.

Never climb a stepladder unless the latch is closed.

Never use a chisel to open a tin. Always use a screw driver or other suitable device.

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