DIY Electrical Advice: What You Can And Can’t Do At Home
With so many renovation and DIY programs on television, it’s no wonder more home owners are now taking it upon themselves to renovate their home. Similarly, home owners can often be confused when they head to their local hardware store and are able to buy any item they virtually need for their home, even if that particular tool or part should only be installed or used by a licensed professional.
While DIY projects can be a great way to save money, there are certain electrical DIY projects around the home that should be avoided all together. It’s simply not worth putting your life at risk when you can call an electrician or an emergency electrician if urgent help is needed to handle the job for you.
The best way to check if you aren’t sure if something needs a licensed electrician or you can in fact do it yourself, is to check out the laws pertaining to your state. While they are mostly on par, they can vary slightly. You can also speak to a trusted electrician about your rights and responsibilities as a home owner when it comes to your electricity.
Some licensed electricians will allow clients to assist with parts of a job under the strictest of supervision. This may include things like the manual labour involved with digging a trench or cutting into walls for example.
Depending on the regulations in your state, some of the DIY electrical work you may be able to complete include things like:
- Not connecting, but cutting the openings for an air-conditioning unit
- Installing your own pond pumps and garden lights
- The installation of smoke detectors that are battery operate
- Not connecting, but fitting an electrical wall oven in a kitchen
- The rewiring of older style fuses
And of course, you can always change the light bulbs in your home.
While this list isn’t exhaustive, if you have the right tools and are capable of doing these tasks ahead of time before you call in an electrician, you’ll be able to save time and money by doing part of the job yourself.
Important Safety Facts
*It’s a misconception that rubber-soled shoes will protect you from an electric shock if something goes wrong. When in doubt, ask an expert for advice.
*Not all extension cords are designed for outdoor use. When using electrical equipment outside always use an extension cable which is specifically designed to be used outdoors.
*Digging in your front or backyard? Visit www.1100.com.au or call 1100 the number for “Dial Before You Dig.” This referral service provides information on locating underground utilities anywhere in Australia. So if you’re unsure if there are any underground cables or pipes on your property, Dial Before You Dig can pass on your information to the underground utility owners who will then be able to respond directly to you with pipe and cable locations.
For more information on electrical safety and compliance in NSW visit the Fair Trading NSW Government Website.