Painting kitchen cabinets
Benoit-Daoust/Shutterstock Choosing the perfect color is the least of your problems if you’re planning to paint your own kitchen cabinets. “What many people don’t know is that painting kitchen cabinets are a lot trickier than a bedroom dresser,” says Newell Slade, a general contractor for Newell Building, LLC. “Often, there is a buildup of cooking grease and finger oils on the surface of the wood. Prep means extensive cleaning with a degreasing agent such as diluted TSP and using oil-based paint, fed through a sprayer.” This home improvement is quite an undertaking and involves specialized equipment and safety measures than most homeowners don’t realize. A skilled painter knows how to paint cabinets in a timely fashion with beautiful results. (Don’t miss out on these 16 things every smart homeowner does at least once a year!)
DIY custom jobs
hxdbzxy/Shutterstock “Homeowners typically fail at DIY projects that require intimate knowledge of a process that a professional would take great care in completing; typically something that is beneath the surface, where they’re more focused on the final cosmetic appearance,” says Brian C. McHugh, owner of McHugh Construction. “A homeowner wanted to save money by forming their own custom shower pan and curb. They did not install the membrane correctly, resulting in water leaking below the shower and damaging the sub-floor and drywall below,” says McHugh. Unfortunately, much of the project had to be re-done, costing the homeowner a large chunk of change. The desire to customize your own home improvement project defeats the purpose of saving money unless your skill set is keen. “If you don’t know what you’re doing and it has the potential of going south quickly, just hire a professional,” recommends McHugh. These are the 11 secrets contractors wish every homeowner knew.
Malfunctioning sink pipes
Africa-Studio/Shutterstock Drano didn’t get the water flowing again but it’s pretty clear the pipe under the sink is the culprit. All you need is a bucket and a wrench to get that hairy clog out, right? Think again. Doyle James, president of Mr.Rooter Plumbing says unless you are certain you know where the problem is, dismantling pipes can be risky. “Pipes are complex and very tricky to reassemble, particularly when they’re in close proximity to other plumbing components and machinery, such as dishwashers or garbage disposals,” says James. Even if you’re certain the obstruction is under the sink, if you don’t have prior experience with dismantling and reassembling pipes, you better leave it to a plumber, James says.