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Take it out; We've had some amazing weather recently, but you don't have to miss out just because you've got DIY to do. Julia Gray offers her tops tips for jobs to do outside.

Some home-improvement tasks are best confined to the garden.

Spray painting. Cover the ground, unless you want a painted patio or lawn, and spray away to your heart's content without having to mask off the things you're not painting, as you would indoors. You should still wear a respirator mask, but you don't have to worry about ventilating the room, or affecting people or pets in it. Just don't spray when it's windy because the paint will go everywhere. * Sanding. There's nothing worse than a layer of sanding dust covering your home. Even if you're only sanding in one room, the dust has a habit of spreading everywhere, so the garden is definitely the best place to use sandpaper and electric sanders, if what you're sanding is portable. * Planing.. Altering something like a door can involve a lot more planning than you imagine, but take it outside and you don't have to worry about the mess. The same goes for sawing - set up your workbench in the garden and it doesn't matter if the sawdust and offcuts go on the ground.

Paint stripping. Chemical paint stripper is pretty unpleasant stuff and gives off strong fumes, so using it outside is easier and safer than taking the necessary precautions inside. Not all paint strippers contain chemicals, of course, but all cause paint to blister, creating quite a mess when you scrape it off. If you'd rather use a heat gun to strip paint, do it outside and you won't have to worry about scorching your furniture or floor.

Tile cutting. The best thing to use for cutting wall and floor tiles is a diamond wheel, either on a tool such as an angle grinder or a flatbed tile cutter, where the wheel's cooled with water to stop it from overheating.

Both are best used in the garden, especially the latter because the water goes everywhere and you'll get a bit of a shock if you use it indoors. Just make sure any washing drying on the line isn't in the way!
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Western Mail (Cardiff, Wales)
Date:May 7, 2011
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