A roof over our heads is our most basic need and right. Throw up some walls and add in windows and doors and we’re weather tight?  Right? It’s all well and good when the sun is shining high in the sky, but when the wind starts to blow and the rains come we all need to be extra vigilant. We need to make sure our houses are watertight and stay that way right through the wet months. There are some basic checks and easy fixes that can stop water and damp becoming a big expensive problem.

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Up on the Roof

Heights may not be for everyone, but for most of us it is fairly easy to check from a safe vantage point that the roof is intact. You may need to get up a ladder, but a visual scan could be enough to check for cracked or missing tiles or shingles.  The fix will depend on your roof type, but repairs of this type are generally fairly inexpensive.

While you are up here, it will pay to inspect your guttering.  It’s amazing how much debris accumulates here over the year, and you need to keep those gullys and downpipes clear. Pull out all the leaves and anything else likely to impede the flow of water away from your roof. If you have nearby trees, as lovely as they are to look at, you might want to invest in some sort of gutter cover.

Down the drains

Water is carried away from your property by a series of drains.  Clear your covers and ensure there are no blockages here. Obvious signs are water pooling up around the base of a pipe or not clearing away from your property. This sort of problem could lead to serious foundation damage. It is advisable to seek some professional advice from surface draining systems at Hydraway.net. You might notice a similar problem occurring in your garden. Again professional drainage is the answer.

Check your vents

Most properties have vents underneath the floor level.  These play a vital role in preventing the moisture build up that encourages rot. Ensure these vents are clear and not obscured. Similarly check that there has been no build up of soil or debris above the level of your house DPC.

Inside the property

Check for telltale spots of mould and dampness on walls and ceiling. This may simply be a matter of discolouration or growing spores.  Increasing ventilation may well sort the problem out but you will want to be sure that dampness is not coming in from outside. This can be especially true for older solid walls. Condensation, which tends to be more noticeable in cold weather, is different from water ingression.  A de-humidifier could be a great help to battle condensation.

Windows and doors

Windows and doors are only as effective as the seals that surround them. This is another easy DIY task. Check the condition of seals and replace or make-good where necessary.  Check sills are not cracked and ensure that paint and varnish is kept in good condition.

When it is time to close the door and retreat to the fire, you can do and let the wet weather throw its worst at you. You’ll be fine.

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