A little bit of home maintenance before winter sets in can save a lot of unnecessary repair costs so its worth spending a few hours checking over your home to see if anything requires attention.
Outside the home : –
- Remove all debris and leaves from gutters, downspouts and grids.
- Check paving and driveways for cracks and repair as necessary to avoid frost causing more damage.
- Clean paving and driveways of leaves and moss to prevent slips and falls.
- Check fencing panels and posts are in good condition and have been treated with a wood preserve.
- Repair any loose or missing pointing and rendering on walls as this will allow water in the joints which may cause more damage should it freeze.
- Any garden furniture should be cleaned and stored until the weather improves.
- Give all padlocks and locks on sheds, etc, a spray of WD 40 or light oil to prevent them from seizing up.
- Check all pipes have sufficient protection against cold weather to prevent them from freezing, use pipe insulation where necessary.
- Check outside lighting is working correctly and clean if required.
Inside the home : –
- Check all draught proofing around windows and doors is in good condition, replace any that is inefficient or missing.
- If you can afford to or have a maintenance contract, have the heating system serviced prior to the winter season.
- Bleed the radiators around the home so they are working efficiently.
- Fit an electronic wall thermostat to control the room (s) temperature more accurately than the old bi-metal strip ones, they are much more accurate and programmable and can be purchased for less than £20.
- Take precautions if you are using portable electric / calor gas heaters, making sure they have sufficient clearance from surrounding surfaces and objects and adequate ventilation as may be required.
- Replace smoke alarm batteries and if you don’t have one install a carbon monoxide alarm. There are some reasonably priced ones at B & Q.
- Show capable members of the family where to turn off the water and gas supplies in the event of an emergency.