Its getting really cold now and all predictions point to the coldest winter in 5 years. There are some essential steps that should be taken now to avoid finding problems later on.
We all know that we should make our cars winter ready by checking windscreen washer levels, anti-freeze, tyres, etc., but how many of us do the same with our home?
Here are five things that you need to look at now before it is too late.
A sadly overlooked servant of our home, gutters sit at the base of our roof with the endless task of collecting rainwater and diverting it to the nearest drain.
Spare a thought for them this autumn / winter by making sure that they are not full of debris and are aligned correctly. This will help to avoid the nuisance of overflow in heavy rain which can cause more serious problems such as damp penetration to the home.
It is human nature to want to seal every crack and stop every draught to make our homes as air tight as possible. Unfortunately, this leads to poor ventilation which leads to condensation which can lead to mildew and in some extreme cases health issues - triggering ailments such as asthma.
As winter sets in, remember to warm the home, but also provide adequate ventilation. Most double glazed windows now have a secure locking function leaving the window slightly ajar. Do this in at least two rooms to create a through draught to prevent your clothes going mouldy in the wardrobe.
3. Draught proofing and insulation
There is a crucial difference between drafts and ventilation. Ventilation is a friend while drafts are your enemy.
Draughts will chill your feet and give you neck ache. So take a look around your home and draught proof your letter box, door frames, wooden window frames and any other place that might let in that cold north wind.
There are still plenty of grants around for cavity and loft insulation if required. So take advantage of this and cut up to 25% of your heating bill.
4. Check your boiler
Plumbers love the onset of icy weather almost as much as car body repairs shops. It is probably the most profitable time of year.
Beat the rush by checking your boiler works now. Remember, you should run the boiler for half an hour once a month throughout summer months to make sure that the pump does not seize.
5. A stitch in time saves nine
This phrase is true with your home. Walk around the outside and apply primer and paint to any bare wood that you find. It may be too late to have the outside of your house decorated before the cold really arrives, but applying a small amount of paint now will avoid rot setting in through the cold and wet winter months.
Once all of this is done, put your feet up and count the days to Christmas!