In the run up to Christmas the list of things to do tends to get longer and longer, but there are some jobs that should go to the top of the list, or they could cost you more money and more problems to fix them in the New Year. Here are the top 3 jobs to add to your list of things to do before Christmas.
Clear your gutters
Gutters drain water away from the building, but during the autumn months they fill up with fallen leaves and debris. When guttering becomes clogged, water is unable to drain away properly and it instead overflows along the foundation of the building. This can cause the soil to soften, causing cracks in the foundations of your home. If this water then freezes it can cause severe cracking and the structure, in extreme cases, can fail.
When water gets trapped in gutters the moisture encourages rot in the soffit and fascia boards, which can then spread into the roof and leave the area vulnerable to rodent invasions. As water migrates into the roof it can cause permanent damage: leaks in ceilings and even walls.
Insects are attracted to decaying debris and when the weather changes they’ll be tempted inside, if you have a timber framed house your home could be especially at risk from a wood eating insect infestation.
Basement conversions have been going down a storm with Londoners, this winter is likely to be a testing time for many of these conversions. Water collecting at the bottom of the structure from clogged gutters can infiltrate basement walls, causing mould, bad odours and in the worst cases flooding and water damage.
Cleaning your gutters will avoid expensive home repairs in the future. To clean your gutters simply scoop out the debris and rinse with a hose pipe. Cleaning your guttering should be an annual project in your home improvement diary, but if you don’t fancy scaling a ladder with a hose pipe, have gardener do a professional job for you.
Fill in the cracks in your driveway
During the British winter the biggest problem for driveways is the freeze-thaw that continues for months on end. If you already have a few small cracks in your driveway, during the winter they will fill with rain water, freeze and then thaw. This freeze and thaw is what causes cracks to grow.
The solution is to fill the cracks with a crack sealer before the first frost. It is a tedious but necessary job to prevent the need to repair the entire driveway in the months to come. A good builder will be able to fill cracks for you and advise which products will protect your driveway best depending on the surface.
Get your boiler serviced
To ensure your boiler is in good working order you should have it checked annually by a Gas Safe approved heating engineer. If unchecked, boilers can be extremely dangerous, leaking poisonous CO2 gas, which is invisible and odourless. An annual boiler inspection will only take around 30mins.
Unserviced boilers will often be inefficient, adding to your energy bills, and often break down when they are put under strain. If you have family members staying with you this Christmas, don’t risk the boiler packing up on Christmas day, get it serviced now by a qualified RatedPeople.com heating engineer and you will have have one less thing to worry about when the in-laws come to stay.
If you can cross these 3 projects off your list before Christmas, you can rest assured that your home will be in good repair over the winter months. And it couldn’t be easier, all you need to do is post your jobs on RatedPeople.com and we’ll put you in touch with quality, local tradesmen who will be able to help you cross those house repair and maintenance jobs of your list of things to do.