DIY Home Repairs


When it comes to DIY home repairs many people ask the question whether they should do it themselves.

As most people lead busy lives, the purpose of this post is to help you figure out whether some tasks are worth doing yourself, or whether it is more beneficial to pay a qualified trades person.

Armed with the correct knowledge and tools most people should be capable of undertaking basic DFIY home repairs and maintenance. For example:

  • changing a tap washer
  • clearing a blocked vanity pipe
  • cleaning gutters
  • painting walls
  • laying floor and wall tiles
  • changing a light bulb
  • fixing a stuck window or door
  • fixing a hole in a wall
  • measuring and estimating the amount of paint or tiles needed for a job
  • And… much more

Measuring success in DIY home repair is not just about saving money, but also the immense satisfaction you will feel in finishing a job, standing back and admiring your efforts.

To help you decide whether to undertake the task yourself consider the following:

  • Estimate how long it will take you to DIY the task compared to a qualified trades person then multiple your hours x 3 times your estimate.
  • Do you have the required replacement parts and tools needed, or will you have to purchase these?
  • Use the hourly rate you get paid in your full-time job as the basis for estimating your labour cost to complete the DIY home repair, plus add in the cost of purchasing the required parts.
  • Phone your local qualified trades person and get a quote for the tradie to fix the repair.
  • Armed with this information you can calculate whether it is cheaper to do it yourself or pay a trades person.

For example, if a leaking tap is caused by a worn tap washer, replacing a tap washer in a conventional tap is straightforward.

If you already have multi-grip pliers all you will need to purchase from your local hardware store, is a pack of replacement tap washers for around $5 – $7.

If you are a beginner it may take you around 20-30 minutes to dis-assemble the tap components, replace the washer and re-assemble the tap assembly.

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However, if you engage the services of a qualified plumber the cost of replacing that worn tap washer will be significantly higher. For example, the plumber you may charge around $80+ per hour, plus call out fee, traveling time and GST. Once you get a quote or estimate from the plumber you can then decide whether to  “give it a go” yourself.

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