Power tools can cut hours off a task and help produce more professional results, despite their numerous advantages, power tools do have one element which their non-powered counterparts don’t have, that is the element of danger. This danger is often overlooked as power tools are often used so frequently. A lot of staying safe with power tools is simply common sense, we run through our top 5 essential safety tips, so you can get your job done easily and safely.
Pick the right tool for the job
Using an incorrect tool for a job can be extremely dangerous. If the right tool isn’t available, it should be purchased. The manufacture will outline the tasks which a certain tool can tackle, in carrying out a task which isn’t specified within this, a user cannot know how the tool will react.
(PS, its fine to open a tin of paint with a flathead screwdriver)
Wear the correct personal protection equipment
It goes without saying that baggy clothing should be avoided when working with tools. The protection of both long hair and jewellery should also be taken into account. To ensure safety, clothing should cover the whole body and where appropriate, PPE equipment should be used. PPE equipment can include hard hats, dusk masks, and goggles. A good set of gloves will also minimise the risk of injuries to the hands.
Stay on a solid footing
I once had a dodgy moment whilst at the top of a ladder, there was another guy halfway down the ladder giving it hell for leather with a chainsaw, it became immediately apparent that this was a rather unnecessary risk and could end pretty badly. Wobbly platforms and uneven ground often make operating a power tool much more difficult, with disastrous consequences if things go wrong. Always ensure that your work platform is as stable as possible. Investing in a solid base for working on is money well spent.
Inspect power tools regularly
It’s important to inspect power tools before each use, check the cords and the plug, the tool housing and any switches. If you find any problems, get the tool fixed by a qualified person, never attempt to use a defective tool. One crucial aspect of tool maintenance is correct storage.
Keep your work area lit & tidy
Power tools should only be used in well-lit areas, attempting a job in poor light can not only put you in danger, but also affect your standard of work. Best practices should also be followed at all times, if you are working on a piece of wood for example, if should be secured and clamped down to avoid movement. Similar precautions should be taken when using both sanders and saws.