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Cutting tools can help with everything from opening cardboard boxes to slicing through drywall. Inexpensive and easy to use, these tools can greatly increase the efficiency of your work. However, it is essential that you use them properly to avoid injury. While you can contact suppliers of cutting tools and box cutters for additional safety tips, the following guidelines should be followed in practically any situation.

Blade Quality

A box cutter blade doesn’t last forever — as with any other blade, it can become dulled over time. It is also possible for the blade to get broken or chipped when misused. If you notice any of these issues with the blades on your cutting tool, get a replacement. Replacement blades are quite inexpensive and are relatively easy to install on your own.

Though you might be tempted to use a dull blade, this can create serious problems. Dull or chipped blades are likely to get “caught” while trying to cut a surface. Not only will this result in jagged cutting, but it will also increase your risk of an injury.

Proper Cutting Technique

A few simple techniques will help you avoid injury when using a box cutter. Start by making sure the blade has been angled away from your body. This way, if you get bumped by another person or push the blade more powerfully than expected, you won’t have to worry about accidentally cutting yourself. Only extend the blade to the length you actually need for your current activity, rather than fully lengthening it.

You can also avoid injury by gripping the box cutter properly. Be careful to avoid placing your thumb over the blade to improve leverage, as this increases the risk of accidentally cutting yourself. Instead, wrap your thumb around the cutting tool. You can also reduce your risk of injury by wearing gloves while using a box cutter.

Retract

For many individuals, the greatest risk for injury actually comes when the box cutter is not in use. Box cutters come with a retractable blade — take advantage of it! As soon as you’re done using the box cutter, fully retract the blade so it is hidden within the casing. This way, you won’t cut yourself when reaching into the toolbox later on.

Conclusion

When used properly, a box cutter can greatly speed up your work and help you become more efficient at various DIY projects. By following these safety basics, you can ensure you’ll avoid accidents and get the results you desire.