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How to safeguard your home against winter weather

How to safeguard your home against winter weather

2019-12-13 
| by Marsh & Parsons (Balham) | Posted in Home & Garden

In this month’s guest blog, the team at Marsh & Parsons Balham share their tips on for keeping your home in top shape during the winter months!

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Getting inside out of the cold is a pleasure that’s hard to beat. But what happens if the cold weather starts to affect your home itself? With the festive season and the (supposedly) never-ending months of January and February fast approaching, we’ve put together our tips to safeguard your home against winter weather, and keep it keeping you toasty warm.

Frozen pipes

Definitely a situation to try and avoid!

 

A relatively sustained cold snap may cause your pipes to freeze. This can lead to a crack (as the frozen water expands and puts pressure on its surroundings), and in turn, a substantial leak.

To prevent your pipes from freezing, you’ll need to maintain as warm surroundings as possible. Keep the heating on for at least twenty minutes every other day, open kitchen and bathroom cabinets to let warm air circulate and double check for any draughts making your home cooler. If you’re going away over the Christmas period, turn off the supply to the water pipes if possible.

So, what are the signs of a frozen pipe? Keep an eye out for the following:

- Frost on the pipe
- No water coming out of the taps
- Bubbling or whistling noises
- Bad odours

If you notice any of these, try to identify the frozen section of the pipe. If you can’t it’s best to call a professional plumber. To thaw the frozen pipe, turn off the water supply, open the taps and gently heat it with a hairdryer or heating pads.

If a pipe does burst, get hold of a professional plumber as soon as possible. Turn off the water supply and electricity and try to move as much of your furniture as you can out of the way to prevent water damage.

 

Power loss

Your fuse box should be your first point of call in the event of a power cut.

 

If the lights and electrics go out, your mind will probably jump to a power cut. First of all, check the fusebox. It may just be that your power supply has ‘tripped’, which is relatively easy to fix. If not, and your neighbours also don’t have power, call 105 to find out more information. If it’s safe to do so, unplug any electrical items- they could be damaged if the power comes back in a surge - and keep an eye on your fridge or freezer for food that might have to be thrown away. Keeping a torch and batteries will come in handy here, particularly now we have minimal daylight time! 

 

Broken Boiler

Hopefully, you will have already had your boiler inspected in time for winter. If you haven’t quite got round to it yet, we’d recommend doing so as soon as you can to minimise the chance of a broken one- and a freezing property- over the festive season.

While we’re on the subject of heating, make sure your radiators are regularly bled to ensure that they’re running efficiently, and you’re saving money and keeping warm. If there are cold patches, it takes ages to warm up or you can hear gurgling sounds it’s time to bleed them. 

 

Condensation

Keeping your rooms well ventilated will prevent condensation on the walls.

 

We know that opening your windows during winter isn’t the most appealing prospect. Unfortunately, if a hot room isn’t ventilated condensation can occur, as when warm air meets a cooler surface it will release some moisture. This can lead to nasty damp patches on your walls- not ideal! If you don’t have windows in some rooms make sure that your extractor fans are cleared of dust so they can work as efficiently as possible. Keep an eye out for the kitchen and bathroom in particular, as these are most likely to suffer from it. This is especially true for new builds, which tend to be more effectively insulated.

 

Damaged roof

London’s not exactly known for its extreme weather, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be prepared for heavier-than-usual rain and strong winds. Check your roof for any loose tiles or potential leaks, and think about falling trees. We know this may seem like we’re going slightly over the top, but a fallen tree or branch can cause a huge amount of (expensive) damage. If you’re worried about a tree near your property, call a tree surgeon for advice.

Keeping an eye out for these five problems and following these tips should keep you cosy during the colder months. For more property maintenance tips, head over to our blog!

 

Hunting for the perfect home in Balham? Take a look at our list of properties for sale here!


Marsh & Parsons Balham is an award-winning estate agent and one of our valued Community Partners. Find them at 45 Balham Hill, SW12 9DR. Call Carys (sales) or Miles (lettings) on 020 8033 4114.

Click here to view local properties for Sale and here for Lettings.

Find out more on their website, and follow them on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

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