GETTING YOUR HOUSE IN ORDER….
Winter is only literally weeks away now. We talk at length about efficiency of stoves and fires...

GETTING YOUR HOUSE IN ORDER….

Winter is only literally weeks away now. We talk at length about efficiency of stoves and fires, and how an increased appliance efficiency is driving the way forward in sustainable heating.

However, as an environmentally focused home owner there are a number of things you can do, to ensure you house is in order and ready for Winter, and at it’s maximum efficiency. 
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  1. The exterior – Have a look at the exterior and pay attention to guttering, make sure they are free of any debris, which could cause serious congestion when we have heavy rain or snow. Check any external taps, and make sure they are insulated from any freezing weather. 
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  2. Garages and outbuildings – Inspect the inside for any gaps or breakages in the roof and walls. On the outside have a look for any missing tiles or tiles, which are loose and could come away in windy winter weather. Having repairs now could mean you save a lot of time and money than if you were to leave it until it turns into an emergency. 
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  3. House roof – Similar to the above check the conditions of the tiles if possible – even if it’s a manual inspection. You may need binoculars to see any problems. Internally you can get inside the attic and look for any signs of damage, wear and leaks. 
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  4. Chimney sweeping – Use a NACS (National Association of Chimney Sweeps) sweeper to give your flue a good sweep. This will remove any debris, which will help towards a safer, more environmentally friendly way to heat a home. 
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  5. Gaps and loose furniture – Ensure all large gaps in furniture stored outside are covered up where possible, also ensure the furniture is secured, so it does not move around (or blow away!) in stormy weather.  Loose furniture also can dislodge covers causing exposure to the elements. 
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  6. Fences – If you have fences ensure they are in an acceptable condition, and are not likely to blow over when the next storm hits. It may also be worth creosoting them now to protect them over the winter months.
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  7. Inside the home – Check for any inefficiencies in doors and windows. Drafts in both will reduce the heating efficiency of any stove, fire or central heating system. Replacing windows and doors is an expensive option, but using insulating tape is a quick and easy win, that will save you money and will help you reduce cold drafts. Modern attic insulation, if you don’t yet have, is a great thing to use, as is cavity insulation. Both help keep your home warm and save on heating costs. In recent years both have greatly improved in overall efficiency. 

Doing a few small things in your home before the winter, will at best help you identify and deal with a potentially significant problem. Even if you don’t find anything at least the checks will provide you with peace of mind. 

 

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