The to-do list typically gains no special priority over the annual tax filing, as far as I am concerned.
That being said, I do have a naturally inquisitive mind. Over the years, I have to admit that I have waded into a variety of projects based on curiosity and what I attribute to neuro-chemical stimulation from solving a complex problem that I previously knew nothing about.
I remember as a child the thrill of announcing to the world, "...and I did it all by myself!"
So this week's unplanned project was the result of an annoyance that has been looking in my face for six months. Whenever I hop in my Ford Explorer SportTrac and turn the key, the first thing I see on the overhead console is the digital compass and external temperature display. When the display began to flicker, fade and eventually disappear, I developed a neurotic obsession with finding out why.
How I Repaired an Electrical Component on My Explorer SportTrac.
Why did I wait six months to "scratch the itch?" Glad you asked. When it comes to handy-man projects, I would much rather pay a professional and take satisfaction that I saved my time and aggravation. But counter-balancing that preference is my hard-scrabble, DIY, Yankee, practical roots that refuse to pay good money for fixing such a frivolous luxury as a digital compass and temperature display.
I will pay for an oil change, but not a blinky light that tells me my global orientation and environment in both Celsius and Fahrenheit.
Which leads me to my topic which I will not belabor. What are the pros and cons of DIY?
- Learn something new.
- Save labor cost.
- Save parts cost markup.
- Say "...and I did it all by myself!" to anyone that cares.
- Get the job done right...after all, if you want it done right, you must do it yourself....or so the saying goes.
- Instant gratification. Why wait in line for an appointment?
- Whatever you might learn is likely to be forgotten or never needed again. Like school.
- Time is arguably more valuable than money or labor cost. You cannot discount time.
- Cutting corners on materials is usually a short term prospect. Quality, guaranties, and product knowledge are built into the markup. Peace of mind is lost. He who represents himself has hired a foolish attorney.
- One could argue that self-absorption in DIY bliss is as productive as fishing, crossword puzzles and fantasy football.
- There is a much higher likelihood that at DIY project is inferior to a professional job. Just think of some examples. Ever pull your own tooth? Made your own shoes? Fly yourself to your next vacation destination?
- When a DIY project emerges from the equivalent of pointing and yelling "squirrel!", and then a day or more is gone, someone or something more important and less interesting just got scuttled.
You know the best of all possible worlds is to own 100% of your time and have enough money to freely decide whether to pay the pro or do-it-yourself if you want to.
Any ideas about that program? Check this one out... The System