Things break all the time. As a new tenant with a fresh load of responsibility to fix all that becomes quickly broken in your student accommodation, you’ll soon realise pipes, doors, walls, heating, wiring and possibly every structure you thought to be solid can suddenly fall apart.
If you’re living on-campus, count yourself lucky for having wardens and university management who would most likely respond within a decent time. Those living off-campus and in private rentals would most likely have tenancy agreements that state their landlord’s obligation to keep the home free from any hazards that could affect the health and safety of anyone inside.
In the UK, for example, this includes ensuring gas, electrical and fire appliances are in safe working conditions. Most US states also oblige landlords to ensure the unit is habitable by meeting minimum building and safety standards, which means ensuring there are no problems with plumbing, heating, pests, electrical systems and more.
In a pinch, however, the internet can be the broke student’s saviour. Landlords aren’t always on-call, your parents could be a million miles away and money isn’t always enough to front costly repairs before getting a refund from your AWOL landlord. Thankfully, we all have WiFi and with that, access to the glorious world of YouTube to help us with those emergency repairs, or at the very least, the smaller repairs you will later realise that you could have clearly accomplished yourself, avoiding the huge bill for calling a professional.
Among the five billion videos on the sharing platform are fantastic tutorials by knights in fix-it, fix-everything shining armours that can save you time, money and frustration if you can only find them. Well, we did the hard work for you. Below is a list of the best YouTube channels for all your DIY repair needs:
This Old House wins for the sheer depth of topics covered. There are more than 1,000 videos on everything from plumbing repairs to backyard drainage to replacing broken windows, so you’ll most likely be able to find the answers to most of your DIY needs. There are even videos explaining the use of tools and products, such as this one on How to Select and Use a Drill/Driver, so you actually have an idea what you’re talking about when you trudge to that Home Depot to get started on your DIY journey.
Hosts Jeff Patterson and Steve White have recorded over 140 videos covering a broad range of repairs for your home and your bathrooms. They teach how to fix a leaking toilet bowl, replace broken windows and rewire an electrical outlet, among many other things. Check out the videos on the little things you can do around the house that could keep it clean and nice too, like removing oil stains from concrete and how to effectively clean grout.
With 125 DIY videos ranging from easy to complicated, the HouseImprovements YouTube channel is an excellent resource to get started on your plumbing, carpentry and electrical problems. He mostly focuses on bigger home improvement projects, so if you feel like your room could do with some major sprucing up (and you’ve cleared it with your landlord), this could be a handy channel too.
For a little bit of empowerment with your home repair lessons, look no further than Beth Allen of DIY Hip Chicks. A licensed contractor, interior designer, and DIY expert, she’s all the visual representation you need that females can take on home repair or improvements too. If you’re intimidated at the thought of even the smallest DIY project, Beth’s channel is the place to be. Though her niche is on helping women, all guys are welcome to follow her too!
For more focus on electrical-related repairs, Sparky Channel’s Bill is the man. His explanations are thorough and should be able to help you get the job done right and without harm. So when your WiFi’s speed is a fraction of what your package is supposed to be or the printer’s ink cartridges need replacing or there’s an urgent need to fix a smoke detector, check out Sparky Channel before calling the electrician.