The chilly season is around the corner and it can be especially hard on our homes. So, what can we do to prevent inconvenient and expensive damage ahead of winter?
- Cracked and frozen pipes can cause serious damage if not dealt with quickly
- Check your electrical wiring to avoid a power failure
- Squirrels wreak havoc on more homes than any other animal
In the battle against winter's unforgiving challenges, it's best to prepare for common home damages. Learn all the different ways you can avoid winter home disasters this year with our easy guide, including top tips from our expert Tommy Walsh, celebrity builder and do-it-yourself icon.
Cracked and frozen pipes caused by cold weather can cause serious damage to your home if not spotted and dealt with quickly. From slow trickles to surprise bursts, a broken pipe isn’t ideal at any time of the year, particularly in winter months. But what if you’re out or away at the time?
Install a water leak detection device. This smart device uses sensors to detect changes in the water supply and can spot a small drip before it becomes a big leak (and bill) - notifying you instantly.
The last thing you want during the dark, cold winter months is a power failure. So how can you spot a problem with your electrical wiring?
If something smells fishy, this could be a sign there's something wrong with your wiring. You can identify this by checking for discolouration or scorch marks around your plug sockets. If you spot either of these, call in the experts to take a closer look immediately.
Squirrels Wreaking Havoc
Did you know squirrels can cause absolute chaos in your home? Maybe that’s why dogs don’t trust them! In 2022, we found that squirrels caused more havoc in homes than any other animal, with LV= home claims involving the pest, rising by 51%. They can get into your roof, gnaw through beams and wreck guttering.
How can you avoid the mess caused by these pests? Make sure to check for any holes or entry points in your roof where they might get in and block them up. Pop into the attic every now and then to check squirrels haven’t been at work in there... and be sure fill in any gaps you spot.
Battling the Menace of Mould
Mould is a common household problem during the winter months and, in addition to being bad for your home, it can be harmful to your health. Often mould lies hidden away, so it can be a challenging to find it and treat it.
Mould thrives in dark, damp locations, so start searching in places like under your sink, on washing machine seals and under floor mats. Also check areas that are exposed to the cold, such as windows and door frames. Mould can even grow in your bedroom, so make sure to look in the gaps between your bed and the wall.
To get rid of mould, wipe down your walls with either a mould remover spray, or for a more sustainable DIY solution, use white vinegar - and make sure to wear gloves and a mask to protect yourself. Keep the room ventilated to stop the spores from spreading.
Tackling Damp Disasters
Damp is a big problem for homeowners during winter months, helped along by condensation on windows and the weather not being nice enough to dry your washing outside.
Treat yourself to a new houseplant as an early Christmas present. English Icy, Peace Lilies and Snake plants don't just look nice, they also absorb moisture from the air, helping to provide a solution to dampness. To give the plants a helping hand, you could also invest in a dehumidifier.
If you spot condensation on your windows and doors, make sure to wipe them down otherwise the excess water could warp around your window seals and encourage mould to grow. We know it’s cold and miserable out there, but don’t forget to open your windows and let fresh air into your home from time to time - it'll allow warm air to escape, reducing condensation.
With Tommy's top tips, you can now safeguard your home from the ravages of winter and ensure a warm and worry-free season. Remember, a little prevention can go a long way in maintaining your home and your own peace of mind throughout the chilly months. So, embrace these tips and welcome a winter season of comfort and security in your home.
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Always be cautious when undertaking any DIY task that you aren’t familiar with, seek professional help where needed.