It’s never something we want to think about, but unfortunately the passing of summer means that winter is approaching, and for those home and business premises owners out there, it’s time to think about what maintenance needs to be done before the cold weather arrives.
Getting an early start on maintenance work is not simply good practice, it’s a sure way to spot any imminent issues early or prevent issues from arising in the first place, saving time, money and inconvenience later on.
Over the coming weeks, take a look through our autumn maintenance checklist and get ahead of the game.
1. Check, clean and repair your gutters
Old gutters that are clogged with leaves and other debris become heavy, and can pull away from the building, becoming potentially dangerous if they break and fall away. Clogged gutters also don’t move water away fast enough, which can cause flooding and extensive damage.=
2. Check door and window seals for drafts
Heat loss is one of the primary unseen costs in buildings, whether home or office. Checking door and window seals to ensure they close properly helps to prevent heat loss, costing less to heat a building and maintaining an even temperature inside more easily.
3. Drain outdoor taps
Closing outdoor taps and draining excess water prevents the water in the pipes from freezing, expanding and bursting, saving time and money in repairs, as well as saving you the inconvenience of an ice-cold water fountain where the pipe bursts.
4. Fix any driveway or pathway cracks
Another area where frozen water can cause major issues is driveways and pathways. Small and seemingly insignificant cracks gather water as it rains, and if the temperature drop to zero or below, this water freezes, expands and can cause the cracks to expand, damaging the surface even more. Simple, inexpensive fillers can solve this problem quickly and easily.
5. Check and test all boilers and heating systems
It is especially important not only to ensure consistent, cost-effective heating throughout winter, but also from a health and safety perspective to check that all boilers are operating optimally, and compliant with UK gas safety regulations.
6. Check all door access systems, locks etc. to make sure nothing is sticking
Door access systems, whether electronic or manual, need regular checking and maintenance to ensure they’re working correctly. In winter, the wet and cold can cause systems to get sticky, but good maintenance should help to prevent this.
7. Check lighting throughout the premises
Whether in hallways, stairwells or general areas or outside on pathways, parking areas or doorways, good lighting in winter is essential. Check that all lights and switches are working correctly, and where applicable check any day/night or movement sensors or lights that work on timers to ensure that they switch on and off as they should.
8. Check snow equipment (blowers, shovels, grit/salt)
If you’ve got outdoor areas used for walking or parking, check that your equipment for keeping them clear of frost and snow is in good shape. Are your blowers and shovels available, and do you have enough salt or grit? Stock up now if you’re running low!
9. Check your car emergency equipment
Maintenance doesn’t just start and end at home or work – you spend a lot of time in your car, so make sure that you’ve got a good winter survival kit including torch, blankets, emergency signals, mobile charger and water safely stored in your car.