Exterior Home Painting Safety Tips

Painting the outside of your home can be fun and exciting. It can also be very dangerous if your not careful. Here’s some tips to keep you safe.

1. Place your ladder at a ratio of 3 to 1
This means for every 3 feet up your ladder should be placed 1 foot away from the house. You don’t need to be exactly like this but the closer you are to this ratio the more stable your ladder will be. Always make sure your ladder has firm ground under it. Never place rocks or other loose objects under your ladder to prop it up. These situations are asking for trouble. Improper ladder placement leads to the most injuries and deaths among painters.

2. Always have three points of contact on the ladder
You always want to have your hand and both feet on the ladder. Never straddle between your house and the ladder. Otherwise you can easily slip and fall. Also if you don’t have three point of contact your ladder can become unstable and can kick out from under or you can fall backwards.

3. Always use a fiberglass ladder next to power lines
These ladders are designed so they don’t conduct electricity. If you accidentally touch a power line on a fiberglass ladder you won’t be electricuted.

4. Never place your ladder under plastic or any other substance
Some people use plastic drop clothes. Don’t put your ladder under one. The plastice will move under your ladder and it will kick out from under you

5. If your in a precarious place have someone spot your ladder
If you have to place your ladder in a place that is considered unsafe have someone stay right beside your ladder to spot you. They can then usually head off any problems you may have.

6. Know your surroundings
Make sure you know where any power lines are and also know of any kind of loose gravel or dirt around your ladder.

7. Be extremely careful if you have to go on your roof
If you are going to be painting on your roof be very careful. slipping and falling can easily kill you or paralise you. Invest in a fall arrest system which will slow you down if you fall. You can buy these for about $75.00 and they are worth it. Also never go on the roof if it has recently rained.

8. Wear steel-toed boots
These boots are designed to keep your toes in tact if something falls on them. Ladders can be very heavy and they can easily break your toes if one falls on them. Steel-toed boots like decrease the chance of breaking your toes if you do drop a ladder on them. They also usually have good rubber traction of them. This is very important when your on the roof and on a ladder. Always make sure you have good footwear on.

9. Never paint when lightning is present
This is especially true if your on an aluminum ladder. These ladders conduct electricity and create a high likelihood of you being struck by lightning during a storm if your on one. Fiberglass ladders won’t protect you because electricity can arch from your house to you. If you see lightning get down and get under cover.

10. Keep your work space clean
You don’t want to be slip and possibly break something. Keep all of your supplies close together and organized.

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