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From Safety to Savings: A Heavy Construction Equipment Blog

If your business works with construction, you deal with a lot of heavy equipment. If you want advice on how to save money on your equipment, you should check out my posts. I plan to write about everything from hiring versus buying, to troubleshooting to reduce repairs, to handling repairs yourself. I also plan to write about other aspects of heavy machinery use such as safety. I ultimately hope that my ideas guide you toward creating a leaner, more productive, more efficient, less expensive, and more profitable business. My ideas are geared toward everyone from newbies to experts in the field of construction.

From Safety to Savings: A Heavy Construction Equipment Blog

Scaffolding Safety Tips for the DIY-er

by Fred Gutierrez

If you are about to embark on a major home exterior project, and you want to use scaffolding to make the job a little easier, you should be aware of some very important safety tips. These safety measures will help prevent dangerous falls and potentially lethal injuries. Be sure you understand the full magnitude of your decision as a DIY-er using scaffolding before you begin.

Stationary vs. Locking Casters

First, there are two kinds of scaffolding bases. Stationary bases must be secured in the ground or with blocks of concrete before you can erect the rest of the scaffolding. Sometimes you can rent stationary scaffolding with concrete blocks already installed around the base poles, but you are required to lift it yourself and take care not to damage the concrete "feet."  Scaffolding bases with locking casters may be the better option for you because the casters are designed to hold a lot of weight but still lock into a stationary position. If you rent scaffolding with caster "feet," be absolutely sure you lock the feet into position before building upwards and/or attempting to climb the scaffolding.


There are two kinds of tie-offs, too. There are the kind that add additional security and stability to the scaffolding itself, and the kind that keep you from falling off the scaffolding to the ground below. If you have to go really high with the scaffolding, both types of tie-offs are essential as the stabilization kind prevents scaffolding from tipping and toppling and the second keeps you safe while you are that high up. If you are not going any higher than two stories, then you can skip the scaffolding tie-offs for stabilization, but you still should use the personal security tie-offs. Ask a construction equipment rental store like All Star Equipment Rental & Sales, Inc. about renting the tie-offs for the duration of your project.

Start from the Ground Up

Unless you are working on a roof project, start from the ground up. This allows you to clear away old siding, paint, etc., on a lower level of the scaffolding before adding the next platform and working your way up a wall to clear another section. Whatever the project is, do it "in-the-round," meaning that you do the first level all the way around your house, then the next level all the way around, and so on. This prevents you from having to disassemble and reassemble your scaffolding several times, which could result in some dangerous errors (e.g., forgetting to lock the casters, etc.).