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One of the main reasons homeowners give for doing home improvement projects themselves is to save money on remodeling. DIY can be a great way to stretch your remodeling budget but as any general contractor will tell you, it can just as easily cost you money if you don’t choose projects wisely. A lot of contractors are called in to try and fix something that the homeowner did incorrectly and in many of these cases the cost is even higher than if the contractor was called in in the first place. Here are four projects you should never undertake yourself.
Extensive bathroom or kitchen remodels
These projects are always way bigger and way more difficult than homeowners anticipate. As a result, they always go over budget and often run out of money with a half-completed bathroom or kitchen. These projects often involve special equipment or training that the average homeowner just won’t have. For projects of this scale, it’s worth the money to bring in an architect and general contractor from the very beginning.
Because your roof is at least a dozen feet off the ground, any DIY work involving your work is inherently risky. Not only do you risk your own safety by trying to do your own roofing work, but there are other drawbacks. Any warranty that came with the shingles is almost certainly voided because they weren’t installed by a professional. If you need any roofing work done, whether it’s a complete replacement or just a patch, it’s best to call in a professional roofer.
If you’ve ever watched funny videos online, you’ve come across homeowners dropping trees or large branches onto their homes or vehicles. This is precisely why you want to hire a professional for tree removal. They have the proper safety equipment and they know how to cut the tree in such a way that it won’t pancake your car or fall into your living room. There are plenty of smaller-scale landscaping projects that you can do yourself to save money but save this for the pros.
Removing harmful materials
For obvious reasons, you should let professionals handle any dangerous materials such as asbestos or lead-based paint. If you have an older home it’s a good idea to have an inspection to test for the presence of these materials. If they’re discovered then it goes without saying that you need to have them removed, but don’t do it yourself.
Projects to do instead
If hiring architects or contractors isn’t in your remodeling budget, then consider some small-scale projects to do instead. For the bathroom or kitchen, you can swap out light or sink fixtures. You can replace cabinet hardware or even repaint your cabinets. You can repaint your home’s interior or install baseboard heater covers. There is no shortage of simple DIY projects that can add value to your home that don’t require the help of professionals.
Measure the height from the floor to the top of the metal wall plate.
Follow our guide for baseboard heater cover measurement:
Any baseboard larger than 7 3/8" (188 mm) will be compatible with our standard cover.
Any measurement greater than 9 3/8" (238 mm) will fit our tall cover.
Measure from the bottom of the finned tube heating element to the top of the metal wall plate,
A measurement of 5 1/2" to 6 3/4" (140 mm – 172 mm) will fit our standard cover.
A measurement of 7 1/2" to 8 3/4" (191 mm – 222 mm) will fit our tall cover.
Measure the distance from the wall or the metal wall plate attached to the wall, to the outside of the finned tube heating element.
Any measurement of less than 3 1/8" (76 mm) inches from the wall will fit our
Any measurement of less than 3 1/8" (76 mm) inches from the wall will fit our tall cover.
EZ Snap™ Wall Widgets are used when your old or existing wall back plate has been removed or if you have to hang your new cover 1 inch or higher to bring them up to a height that will fit our installation guidelines. Just measure your overall desired height, subtract 1", drill a hole, preferably in a stud and attach it to the wall with the included screw.
EZ Snap™ Floor Fidgets easily raise your new covers ¾ inch to compensate for any ¾ inch floor (wood, tile, or other) that has been installed any time since your baseboard heater was originally installed. May be used for any reason when the overall height has been shortened and the total height is less than 7-½ inches for standard height or 9-½ inches for the TALL height EZ Snap™ BaseBoard Covers. Just use the self-tapping screws to secure them to the top of your existing wallplate.
EZ Snap™ Wall Contraptions are used when your wall back plate has been completely removed. EZ Snap™ Wall Contraptions receives your EZ Snap™ BaseBoard Cover and keeps your aluminum fin tube from sagging. These completely replace your wall back plate. To install, slide up from the bottom and make sure the top is at your desired height. Screw to the wall, then bend the front finger up to hold the fin tube in place.
Measure from wall to wall and subtract ½ inch (to allow for wiggle room when installing your new covers.) The endcaps can be pulled or slid ½ inch outward on either end to fit your existing length requirements. Choose 2 flush to wall end caps.
Measure the overall length of the existing unit with ends attached then subtract ½ inch (to allow for wiggle room when installing your new covers.) The endcaps can be pulled or slid ½ inch outward on either end to fit your existing length requirements. Choose 2 Closed or Open-end caps.
Measure from the corner to the end of the unit with ends attached then subtract ½ inch (to allow for wiggle room when installing your new covers.) The endcaps can be pulled or slid ½ inch outward on either end to fit your existing length requirements. Choose 1 Closed or Open-end & 1 flush to wall end cap.
Measure the left side from corner A to corner B (see diagram). Then subtract 3 inches for the 90 degree inside corner, then subtract another ½ inch (to allow for wiggle room when installing your new covers.) Repeat for the right side if also wall to wall. You need to subtract a total of 3½ inches from each side that is wall to wall. Choose your end caps.
Measure the left side from the corner of the wall to the end of the unit with ends caps. Then subtract 3 inches for the 90 degree inside corner, then subtract another ½ inch (to allow for wiggle room when installing your new covers.) Repeat for the right side. You need to subtract a total of 3½ inches from both left and right sides. Choose your end caps.
L-Shaped outside radiators ending in the middle of the wall:
Measure from outside corner of the wall A to the end of the radiator unit with end caps attached B, then subtract ½" (to allow for wiggle room when installing your new covers.)
Measure from outside corner of the wall to the corner of the wall, then subtract 1/2" (to allow for wiggle room when installing your new covers.)
Left leg - measure from the corner out to the end of the radiator subtract 3" for the corner and ½ (to allow for wiggle room when installing your new covers.)
Center leg - measure from corner to corner and subtract 3" for each corner a total of 6"
Right leg - measure from the corner out to the end of the radiator subtract 3" for the corner and ½" (to allow for wiggle room when installing your new covers.).
We recommend that you order covers a little longer than normal and cut them on site, as there are many opportunities for mistakes in measuring and installation. By cutting on site you can fit and cut to fit. The covers can be cut with a good quality jigsaw and a fine metal cutting blade.
Now that you’ve learned how to measure baseboard heaters,
you’re ready to order.