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How to protect your home in the winter
The winter months are tough on everyone. We’re more prone to illness, central heating wreaks havoc with our skin, the roads become icy and many animals even hibernate to escape the chill.
Our homes are also more prone to problems when it’s cold outside and paying extra attention to maintaining your property at this time of year is important. Below we have listed a few simple ways you can help to protect your home during the winter.
Keeping an eye on your pipework should be top of your winter property maintenance checklist because pipes can burst when water pressure builds up.
Insulate your pipes with sleeves or wrapping and remember to run heat through them at least a couple of times a week to help minimise the build-up of frozen water. It may be tempting to turn the heating off if you’re going away but try to leave it on a low setting otherwise you may come home to frozen pipes.
Condensation can affect any property and if it isn’t dealt with quickly, can lead to bigger problems. A few great ways to stop condensation from occurring include:
- Avoid drying clothes on radiators or in front of the fire. If indoor drying is unavoidable, open a window in the room the clothes are being dried in.
- When cooking, cover your pans so the steam doesn’t escape and use the extractor fan as this helps to remove excess moisture. Try to keep doors closed when cooking to prevent steam from going into colder rooms and causing condensation.
- Extractor fans are great but it’s even better if you can open a window when cooking or showering. A dehumidifier can also help to remove excess moisture from the air.
- Try to keep your heating on at a consistent temperature because this helps to keep surfaces warm and prevents rapid temperature changes.
- Try to ensure that furniture is at least 50mm away from surrounding walls so that air can move around properly.
If you haven’t done this for a while, try bleeding your radiators to see if there’s any trapped air inside them. Releasing the air allows your radiators to fully heat up which not only keeps your house warmer, it can also help to reduce energy bills.
Windows can be a major source of heat loss so keeping them as insulated as possible is paramount. A great way to ensure this is with window shutters. They’re fantastic heat insulators which means that they can help to keep your property warm and reduce your heating bill.
Clean your gutters
Your gutters work by moving water and debris away from your home and protecting it from damage caused by settling water, mould and decay. Keeping your gutters clean during winter has a number of benefits including:
- Protects against water damage – gutters direct rainfall away from your property. This is particularly important in winter when there tends to be more rain and melting ice.
- Debris can freeze – any water and debris that is sitting in your gutters when the temperature drops could freeze. Because water expands when it freezes, it could also cause your gutters to crack. This means that water will simply drop down onto your house rather than flow away from it.