Staying Safe During a Home Renovation

Here are dangers and risks that should be top of mind during a renovation project

Staying Safe During a Home Renovation

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A home renovation might be carried out by a homeowner, a team of contractors, or a combination of both. Because there are so many unique factors involved in a situation like this, a plumber must always be aware of dangers that could lead to serious injuries.

Keep these tips in mind.

Learn as Much as Possible About the Project Before You Start

There are numerous elements involved in a home renovation, especially if it’s a bigger project. If an electrician or any other professional has been on site already, get as much information as you can so you know what to expect when you arrive on the site.

Other professionals who have encountered problems already, like bad wiring, may be able to advise you about dangers. When multiple contractors have been on site but you’re not able to speak to them, it’s helpful to conduct a small audit on site yourself to determine whether or not there are any dangers or problems present.

Use the Proper Tools

One of the main reasons that someone damages pipes or hurts themselves is because they don’t have the proper tools for the job. While any professional plumber likely has the necessary training and all of the appropriate tools, it’s still worth looking at a list of tools you’ll probably want to be sure to have on hand for a renovation project:

  • Screwdrivers
  • Pipe wrenches
  • Basin wrenches
  • Channel locks
  • Compression sleeve pullers
  • Hacksaw
  • Plumber’s putty
  • Allen wrench set
  • Adjustable wrench

Be leery of keeping any tools in pockets because slipping and falling is a high risk, and that could result in serious injury.

Also consider always using a dust mask and safety goggles. Breathing in too much dust can lead to respiratory issues and eyes can be exposed to significant problems due to loose debris falling from dirty pipes. Precautions can help to keep sharp bits of metal, contaminated water and rust from coming into contact with your eyes. The right set of gloves is also extremely valuable. 

Always Keep Cutting Equipment Sharp

If you fail to keep cutting equipment sharp, it could cause serious injuries. Furthermore, any electrical tools should prompt a plumber to be aware of the danger of electric shock. Only use power tools that are safe for a wet environment and those that have a ground fault circuit interrupter.

Working on any metal pipes should prompt additional caution. If a plumber feels tingling when coming into contact with a metal pipe, the work should be stopped immediately. 

Clean Up Spills Quickly

As it is with any type of workplace, it is important for a plumber to remove spills and other dangerous materials from the work area as soon as possible. Since slip and fall accidents are some of the leading causes of personal injuries and workplace accidents, proper materials to capture spills should be brought to every work site to minimize the risk of an injury. 

Avoid Repetitive Motion Tasks

Taking regular breaks can minimize the chances of suffering from a repetitive stress injury. Consider taking a break from whatever you are doing about every 30 minutes. Simply stand up and walk around.

In addition to ensuring that you are not contorting your body into strange positions, you should learn safe lifting techniques for bringing in any materials into the home that need to be installed or those that need to be removed, such as old toilets and bathtubs.

Getting hurt on the job is an unfortunate situation that no one should have to experience if the proper precautions are taken.

About the Author

Eric J. Purchase, a personal injury attorney based in Erie, Pennsylvania, is a contributor of safety stories for Plumber magazine. Visit


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