There are plenty of reasons why you might want to choose to take on a DIY project. You may decide to do something yourself because you think it will be an easy project or because you enjoy working with your hands. You might even consider doing a DIY project because you think it would save you money over hiring a professional. Regardless of your reasoning, there’s one thing about DIY that a lot of project guides and instructions leave out: what to do with everything that is left over once you are done with a project.
DIY waste can be a real concern, since depending on the project there might be a lot of waste produced. Given the nature of the materials involved with many home DIY projects, you shouldn’t just throw everything out that you didn’t use. Here are a few ideas to think about regarding reducing the amount of waste produced. By changing the way you think about the waste, you can change the way you approach projects and maybe even save some money in the process.
Planning Away Waste
One of the first things you should do when trying to reduce your DIY waste is to stop for a moment and rethink your measurements and calculations. If the project involves wood or other materials that are cut from a larger piece, make sure that your cuts are efficient and made to preserve as much of the surrounding material as possible. If you’re going to need single-use items that come in a lot of packaging, consider whether you’ll have use for similar things in the future, and if so, buy a multi-pack if available so that you’ll have one on hand without even more packaging waste. If you’re going to paint or stain the project, select colors that you’ll likely be able to reuse for future projects. You can probably see where this is going.
Basically, spend a little bit more time during the planning phase of your DIY project to make sure that you aren’t creating excess waste that could otherwise be avoided. Ideally, you’ll end yo with larger pieces of scrap that can be saved for the future, as well as other materials that either you or someone else might have a use for. Even if you only manage to reduce your project waste by a little, every little bit helps, and those waste reductions can really add up if you end up doing a lot of DIY.
Reusing Waste Materials
When it comes to reusing scrap material from past DIY projects, you aren’t always going to get a perfect match to what your current project calls for. Sometimes you’ll have different types of wood on hand, or a color of stain that doesn’t quite match what you’d planned on. That’s ok; if what you have is a good substitution, then you can use it and save some money on your materials. If not, don’t try to force a match and end up creating a substandard result. Just save your scrap and excess materials for a future project because if you’re active in DIY, then there’s always going to be another project.
One thing that’s important to remember is that you should keep your scrap and waste material well organized. That might even be a DIY project of its own. Create an organization solution to hold scrap wood, piping , paints and other materials that you kept out of the waste bin, so that you can always find what you are looking for.
There’s a lot of satisfaction that comes from doing something on your own as a DIY project. Not every project is ideally suited for DIY though. If you don’t have the time or experience to tackle a project correctly, keep in ming that there’s no shame in calling in some help to get it done. We can help with this. Give us a call and we will share a list of our trusted contractors to help with your projects that can take care of their waste afterward. We want to be your real estate resources for life.