5 Common Building Code Violations Explained 5 Common Building Code Violations Explained
It's important to understand how a building code can affect various DIY projects around the home. You may be a confident DIYer, but there are still some very common mistakes which people make. Not only do these mistakes mean that your building is no longer up to regulations, but it also means that your house has been put at unnecessary risk.
Understanding Building Codes
Understanding building codes can be very difficult because these codes will vary significantly, depending on the part of the country you live in. What's more, these codes are almost always changing.
There are some very common mistakes which people often make that can put your safety in jeopardy. By learning from other people's mistakes you should be able to make your own DIY projects much safer.
1. Damage to Electrical Sockets
Any damaged switch covers or sockets can put your life in danger. Some people may not care about a small crack and may intend to replace it later. However, the crack affects the safety of the socket, and it should never be used. If you have a damaged outlet never fit it. Take it back to the store for an exchange, or buy a new one if you personally caused the damage. Damage to electrical outlets can also lead to potential fire risk.
2. Not Fitting Circuit Breakers
A circuit breaker is much quicker than an old fashioned fuse. You must fit these everywhere in your home where one is required. They are particularly useful in wet areas. A circuit breaker is especially important in the bathroom and kitchen, since water and electricity don't mix.
3. No Extension Cords
Instead of fitting proper sockets, many people will run temporary electrical systems using lots of extension cords. These are very dangerous because they are a trip hazard and may also get cut into. Whenever you are about to decorate a room, take some extra time to chisel out channels and fit new runs of wire.
4. Protect Wires
When you are fitting new wires you should always try to bring the wiring down from the ceiling rather than from the floor. You also need to install some metal shielding around the wire to prevent screws or nails from cutting into the wire. This protection is available from most home hardware stores and can be fitted by nailing it to the wall. It can then be hidden behind the plaster, which will also help keep it in place.
5. Supporting Walls
If you are ever knocking holes in walls for any reason you need to find out if it's a load bearing wall or not. If it is a supporting wall then you will need to replace the support by using a lintel. Many homeowners will accidentally take out a load bearing wall and then be surprised when their home falls down.
DIY is a great way to save some of your hard earned money. However, that doesn't mean that you should risk doing anything you don't feel capable of.