It’s safe to say that winter is well and truly upon us, and with Christmas fast approaching, it’s all the more crucial to ensure your home is all set for the months ahead.
Frost, ice, snow, bitter winds and rain can all cause havoc with your home and present problems when you least expect them. That’s why it’s better to do a full check and take preventative action sooner rather than later.
1. Drains & Pipes
It’s essential that your house’s draining and plumbing system be working well, as this can lead to burst pipes, blocked drains and/or a loss of central heating and hot water.
Start by checking the condition of the ground level drains around your home. After fall these can often be clogged with leaves, dirt and weeds, which can lead to water blockages and even interior damp patches later down the line.
With your pipes, its important to keep them at a consistent temperature to avoid them freezing. You can do this by disconnecting and draining any outdoor hoses, so an overnight freeze doesn’t burst the pipe its connected to. Insulating your pipes with pipe wrapping materials is also a good idea – these are available from any hardware store.
If you’re going to be in the house over Christmas, then frozen pipes shouldn’t be too much of a worry. If you’re going away, however, it can be useful to have your central heating set to an automated schedule to keep pipes working.
Your home should ideally already be insulated both in the walls and in the loft. This works miracles for retaining heat and can help your energy bills plummet.
If you’re earning less than £15,860 as of 2014 then you will be eligible for all kinds of deals on home insulation, including from your current supplier. The Money Saving Expert website has all kinds of info on this, such as how to get free insulation and which deals you may be eligible for.
3. Energy Tariff
Are you currently on the right energy tariff for your home? As our needs for gas and electricity change regularly, so do fuel prices. It’s important to review your usage regularly and see what new tariffs are out there to ensure you’re getting the best deal at any one time.
Try comparing the best deals for your postcode via the uSwitch Energy page. Remember it’s never too late to switch. The sooner you do it, the sooner you can start saving.
4. Windows & Doors
PVC doors and windows are often a preferable alternative to traditional wooden ones, as they cannot easily be kicked in or forced open. Thanks to their secure seal when shut tightly, they also provide very good insulation against the outdoors and help to keep out drafts.
Double glazing is a huge aspect of adding more warmth to your home, and also helps to keep out noise too. Because it involves two panes of glass either side a layer of air or Argon gas, double glazing Wirral prevents internal air from reaching its ‘dew point’ as quickly and thus keep damp patches from forming.
5. Roofing & Guttering
Check your roof for any loose tiles, cracked guttering, or any kind of frost or rain damage. Any damaged or loose tiles will need to be replaced immediately to avoid them causing damage to roof timbers or ceilings. It’s also worth looking out for debris on the ground around your home for signs of dislodged tiles.
It’s essential that your gutters and drainpipes are also in good working order, as a blockage can lead to trapped water freezing and causing the pipe to shatter. Signs of soil being washed away on the ground, or splashes/stains of soil on the walls at base level (visible when the weather is dry) might mean that your gutter is not catching water.