One of the most common claims received by insurance companies is for accidental damage to carpets during DIY projects. For many unfortunate residents, it’s also the time they find out they’re not covered for accidental damage.
Please – not the old sheets and curtains
Carpets can be one of the most expensive furnishings you purchase when turning your house into a home, especially if you’ve gone for deep pile fully-fitted. Is it really worth losing that unusual pattern and colour it took six months to find, through inadequate protection. Breaking out that old pair of curtains or two old sheets and dropping them by the bit of wall you’re about to paint really doesn’t cut it. The curtain gets pulled away from the skirting by dragging feet. Paint soaks through the sheet to the carpet from the upturned tin lid nobody’s noticed. And un-noticed flying paint spots land outside the protected area.
Prepare for the preparation
Your first consideration before any interior DIY job should be carpet protection. Deciding you can vacuum up paint and wood dust after you’ve rubbed down skirting boards and window and door frames is short-sighted. While you’re moving around with your fine grain sandpaper, your feet will be moving around forcing splinters and grime deeper into the pile.
Adequate protection goes much farther than that. Many claims are not caused by paint splashes from a wall or door that’s being painted, but by paint splodges which have been picked up from dust sheets on shoes or trainers and carried to unprotected carpet areas. If one room is being redecorated, temporary protection should extend from the room to the outside access point. If the whole house is being brightened up, all rooms, landings, stairway and hall should be adequately protected before work begins.
A range of temporary carpet protectors
Nowadays there are a large range of products available to ensure your prized carpets or parquet floors are protected against all eventualities, including overturned paint containers. Considering the cost of replacing damaged carpets or flooring, temporary protection is also highly cost-effective. Products come in easy to lay rolls of varying widths and lengths, with a low-tack sticky film on one side. This film is strong enough to hold the product tight to carpets and skirting boards, even with children and pets moving back and fore. On completion of work the lengths are easily lifted and won’t leave any tacky residue on the carpets or flooring.
Non-tacky protection rolls are also available but, for maximum effectiveness should be joined with tape. Tape should also be used around the edges to skirting boards, to minimise the risk of movement from footfalls or stepladders being repositioned. Whether using plain dust films, or those with a self-adhesive side, a minimum 2” overlap when butting lengths together should be allowed, to provide maximum protection.
Next time you’re considering giving your home a facelift, make sure you’re prepared for the preparation, and get your temporary carpet protection down first.