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The dangers of DIY: These basic tools cause homeowners the most injuries (and the most ER time)

Aly J. Yale
The Mortgage Reports contributor

DIYing can be dangerous

As a homeowner, DIYing some of your property repairs can mean serious savings. Apparently, it can also mean serious injury, too. According to a new analysis, even some of the most innocuous DIY repairs and tools can have painful, long-term repercussions for America’s homeowners.

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The most dangerous home tools

A new analysis from Porch.com proves that DIYing your home repairs — even very minor ones — isn’t such a safe bet.  According to the findings, basic tools like ladders, nails, screws and even garden tools pose serious hazards to American homeowners who use them.

Apparently, the ladder is the single-most dangerous home repair tool in the country, resulting in nearly 200,000 emergency room visits every year. Ladders also kill about 300 people annually.

All in all, using a ladder means a 1 in 1,680 chance at an ER visit, according to the report.

Hardware like nails and screws come in as second riskiest, causing 124,000 ER visits annually and a 1 in 2,615 chance at injury. Lawn mowers come in at third, with nearly 90,000 trips to the ER, while even basics like cleaning equipment and garden tools cause more than 50,000 ER-worthy injuries each every year.

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Top home repair injuries

At the injury level, homeowners’ fingers, arms, eyes, face, feet and the upper torso are most at risk.

As Porch explained: “When it comes to home improvement, our digits are in the greatest danger. Fingers accounted for the greatest percentage of injuries and were the most likely to be caused by bench or table saws.”

Injuries are also more likely to happen to men. About 70 percent of all home repair-related ER visits happen to males, with men 50 to 59 most at risk. Home repair injuries occur most often on Saturdays and Mondays and in the summer months of June, July and September.

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Not just amateurs

According to Porch’s findings, it’s not just amateur DIYers who are at risk for home repair injuries.

“From hammers to hacksaws, the tools of home improvement can turn dangerous quickly if misused,” the report found. “For novices and experts alike, a lapse in focus or preparation can have painful consequences — leaving the homeowner hurt and the project half-finished.”

Porch’s researchers warn homeowners to stay cautious, remain focused and properly prep your area before diving into any home repair project — no matter how experienced you might be.

“No matter how modest your home improvement project may appear, exercise caution and focus at every stage. From preparing your workspace to cleaning up after your task is complete, your diligence will help avert danger.”

Verify your new rate (May 24th, 2019)

Get today’s mortgage rates

Need a little help funding those home repair projects? Then a refinance may be able to help. Shop around and see what refinance rates you qualify for today.

Verify your new rate (May 24th, 2019)