Old man winter is once again just around the corner and many of us are already putting together a house maintenance checklist to ensure that we are prepared for the colder months ahead. Of course, this is often easier said than done.
Thankfully, the team at AD Services has taken the time to put together this house maintenance checklist so that you can remain one step ahead. If you have been struggling to formulate an effective strategy, the advice outlined below will come in handy.
Waterproofing Your House
As we already know, winters in Cork can be less than agreeable on occasion. It is crucial to ensure that your home is protected from harsh weather conditions. Waterproofing the windows and doors of your house is something you’ll want to do in advance. As the old saying goes, prevention is better than cure. Check for any noticeable cracks of draughts. Keep an eye out for moisture around their borders and when necessary, use caulk or silicone to fill in gaps. If you wish to upgrade your existing doors and windows, professional construction companies in Cork will offer a host of solutions.
Circulation and Ventilation
Another way to create a winter-ready home is to appreciate how warm air circulates within an enclosed environment. If your home contains one or more ceiling fans, it is wise to reverse their direction so that they turn in a clockwise fashion. This rotation will help to prevent warm air from rising. Most ceiling fans are equipped with a switch that enables you to change their direction of rotation. If you have recently completed a sunroom extension, this tip is important to add to your house maintenance checklist.
Examine Your Hot Water Tank
Although most hot water tanks are built to last a long time, we need to remember that they can still suffer from age-related issues. Before the colder weather sets in, check for any cracks around joints, pipes, welded seams, and the base. Another sure-fire sign that maintenance is required involves signs of rust or puddles of water beneath the reservoir. Although new builds are not likely to suffer from these issues, any water tank that is more than ten years old should be thoroughly examined. You can contact a professional well in advance. It is the same when referring to ground-source heat pumps or boilers.
Mitigate the Risk of Fires
It should come as no great surprise that a considerable portion of home fires occur during the autumn and winter. There are a handful of hidden hazards that should be examined in close detail when completing a house maintenance checklist. One of the most common causes of a domestic fire involves clogged dryer hoses. If extremely hot air is allowed to build up within these exhaust ports, highly flammable materials such as lint can be easily ignited.
It is important to clear out any blockages. Be sure to check any dryer vents that could also become clogged with dirt and debris. Finally, leave ample space between the back of the dryer and any nearby walls; a lack of circulation could cause the machine to heat up to dangerous temperatures.
House extensions can be enhanced using bespoke fireplaces and chimneys. When new, they can provide amazing levels of warmth and comfort. However, older models can present problems. Blocked chimneys can release dangerous amounts of carbon monoxide and can be a primary cause of house fires. It is recommended that you contact a professional chimney sweep at least once each year. This individual will make certain that no hazards are present.
Examine All Indoor Pipes and Plumbing
Pipes that freeze can easily burst. This can cause hundreds or even thousands of euros worth of damage. Ensure that all pipes are properly insulated before the winter begins. I cannot stress how important it is to add this to your house maintenance checklist. One simple way is to wrap any exposed pipes with foam insulation (this can be purchased at most local hardware stores).
Industry professionals also recommend allowing your taps to drip, as moving water is less likely to freeze. If the temperatures outside become extremely cold, it may be wise to keep the heat on overnight. It is much less likely that ice will form. Even if a bathroom renovation or a kitchen rebuild has only recently been completed, the steps mentioned above are still important to follow.
Protect Garden Furniture and Plants
Garden furniture, exterior appliances and plants need to be taken care of in the colder temperatures. Try storing these items in a shed or garage. If your property contains an underground sprinkler system, turn off the water feed so that the conduits will not freeze.
Gutters can easily become clogged during inclement times of the year. If a clog forms, the water will not drain properly. This may damage your home and ultimately result in costly repairs. Inspect your gutters and when necessary, contact a professional cleaning service. These individuals will ensure that no blockages are present and they can also identify any problem areas (such as joints) that need to be replaced.
Check Your Insulation
Cavity wall insulation and the insulation found within an attic may need to be replaced from time to time. Outdated materials can cause your energy bills to rise substantially. Therefore most loft conversions will automatically include new insulation. Be sure to keep an eye out for these warning signs on your house maintenance checklist:
- Unexplained draughts
- High levels of humidity
- Mould and/or moisture
- Rising energy bills with no clear explanation
If you suspect that a problem is present, contact a professional.
Keeping The Winter At Bay With A House Maintenance Checklist
This house maintenance checklist is vital for the harsh winter months we experience in Ireland. Not only will your home benefit from these changes but you will also be keeping up with modern building regulations in Ireland
The team at AD Services has been providing targeted solutions for more than 20 years and our house maintenance checklist has already been used by countless property owners throughout Cork. Please contact us if you would like to schedule a no-obligation consultation or should you have questions about the house maintenance checklist mentioned above. We are always here to help.