What does a Garden Gnome do when she is not gardening, in the kitchen or doing genealogy? Well the answer might just surprise you so read the entries to find out more. This blog focuses on everything we do to make our house a home. There will be a strong emphasis on home energy efficiency and do-it-yourself (DIY) projects. At the same time there will also be crafts, knitting and crocheting projects along with any other little tips we do to create that down to earth, I want to be here home. Please enjoy your visit :)

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Know When to Not Do-It-Yourself

My husband and I have been avid DIYers ever since we bought our first house eons ago.  We are quite capable of doing a vast number of repairs and renovations around our home.  Believe me we have dealt with some rather tricky DIY projects given that our second house was a turn-of-the-century Victorian era house.  We did everything on that house including siding, roofing, electrical, plumbing and then some.  There comes a point though that there are some projects that are beyond the scope of the advanced DIYer.  Knowing when to hire or get a professional in is half the battle with respect to DIY projects and in some cases when working to code there is no choice but to hire a professional.  The building code is there for your safety so even when doing it yourself it is to your benefit to know the code and work within those parameters. 

Using a professional does not always mean you have to pay out.  The building code in Ontario stipulates that gas connections must be done by a licensed gas fitter.  So we can run the gas lines but we cannot connect them to the gas line or to the appliance.  Luckily we have family members who are licensed and willing to hook up any of our gas appliances free of charge.  We have found it best to hire out the annual furnace and AC inspection.   We do have a certified electrician to do any work we are not capable of doing.  He is really good and his rates are more than reasonable.  We also have a certified plumber to deal with any plumbing situations we can't handle.  He was out a lot at our last house but has only had to help us out once at this house for a leaking tub faucet with no access to change out the fittings.  The new fittings we bought wouldn't fit so we called him in. 

Our gas water heater is a rental, something we don't like.  We have always bought them out or replaced with a new one we bought.  Well this water heater is less than five years old so we are leaving it as a rental until spring.  In the meantime, they have already been out to clean and check the water heater free of charge as part of the rental agreement.  We only pay $13 per month for the water heater rental which covers all maintenance and repairs but still buying your own is cheaper.  It will do until spring while we focus on gettle settled into our new home. 

We are busy fixing things that quite frankly the previous owners should not have done themselves.  The caveat is, if you don't have the skills to do the job properly or it is beyond your scope as to learning how to do the job properly, that is the time to get a professional in that does know how to do the job properly.  Rely on your resources (eg. family, friends) and if that fails get recommendations for repairmen that have a good reputation.

Garden Gnome