John started doing his own crafts at an early age thanks to encouragement by his parents. His father was most instrumental in using the typical tools to construct things, like a miter saw, a jig saw, a drill and a hammer. This was instilled in him from that early age and he took on most projects throughout his many homes from building decks, to rehabilitation of outdated rooms to making a home smart with home automation.
To undertake DIY projects implies that you have the tools or you are willing to buy or rent the required tools to complete the job. This comes at a cost and it is a cost that a contractor passes onto you. So why not buy the tools, do the job yourself and save money?
Well, not so fast.
When you take on a DIY project you are bound to make mistakes. Some mistakes may be costly while others may be aesthetically displeasing. EVERYONE makes mistakes, including the contractors themselves and their employees and those who they sub-contract the work to perform. So what is different from you and a contractor? A experienced contractor brings years of experience including the mistakes that they made (with hopes that they will not be made again). Those mistakes help to make a better contractor. Now, extend the same principle to you.
You will become a better DIY Contractor
one mistake at a time.
John has gone through may situations with DIY construction. John is proud of every DIY project he has completed. Some projects take years to reach completion as once they reach "good enough" they can be functional. You must make that decision if you are willing to take a project to the end and complete the finishing details or if you are ok with "good enough". It is mostly sweat equity, time and materials.
Some projects don't make sense to take on.
John will not do roofing - he will let the
experts handle the heights.
John rarely tackles a project without first consulting those with experience. His cousin is super handy. Actually, his cousin owns a very successfull and well known home construction company. So he has many tips for John when he is about to tackle a project. The point here is, talk with your friends. Ask them for advice. And don't forget to follow the code enforcement. If you don't know how to file a permit, John has a video on how to do just that.
John shows you how to apply for an Electrical Permit in this video.
Be Cautious with Electric
John has been working with electric for over 30 years. He is overly cautious with electrical work as you should be too. If you do not feel comfortable with electrical work consider hiring an electrician. Or do the work you feel comfortable performing and hire an electrician to tie it together; however, not all electricians will take this approach unless the contract is very clear on the scope of work. Their insurance may not permit owner installs without first inspecting the work.
John shows you how to install a sub-panel from start to finish. A sub-panel is an option to provide more breaker slots for segmenting your circuits. Follow the NEC guidelines for installing a sub-panel. The guidelines will require a load calculation if you build an addition or another structure and you may find that your existing "main" panel is not adequate and may need to be upgraded. At that point you may not require a sub-panel unless the purpose of the sub-panel is to provide additional breakers at a remote location.
John shows you how to a light fixture. If you are installing the light fixture outdoors you must verify that the light fixture is rated for outdoor use.
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