The routine jobs you can’t afford to ignore

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Some jobs are tough to get excited about. Sure, if you’re planning a new kitchen or a loft conversion you’ll be chomping at the bit. But guttering or roof repairs? Not everybody feels the love.

These jobs are really important, though. It’s like getting your car serviced: leave it too late and things will stop working properly.

So let’s take a look at our top four boring – but essential – jobs around the home.

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Grout it and seal it

Do you see any cracked grout or mouldy sealant around your kitchen sink, your shower or your bath? Uh oh.

It doesn’t just look dreadful – cracks and holes are an easy way for water to get into places it shouldn’t. As time passes this can lead to damp and mould problems.

It’s usually an easy fix, though. For leaking or mouldy silicone, an expert can remove it all and reapply a fresh new bead. Bonus: it’ll make an old bathtub or grubby shower look much fresher.

And cracked grout needn’t mean retiling: experts can often remove and repair old grout while keeping your current tiles.

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Look after your gutters

Who’s excited about guttering? Don’t all put your hands up at once.

But… gutters are an essential part of your home. Even a small roof can catch a lot of water when it’s raining, and your gutters get that water away from your home.

If they get blocked and start overflowing, water will start streaming out during bad weather. Over time it’ll soak parts of your home that should really stay dry – and eventually it can penetrate masonry and lead to damp problems.

That’s why we recommend having your gutters cleaned regularly to remove any potential blockages. It keeps the water flowing and prevents problems later. The biggest culprits are leaves, moss, sticks, dust, dirt and even birds’ nests.

For most of us it’s a good idea to do it twice a year: once in early spring and once in early autumn. If you haven't had them cleaned out in a while, and you are noticing water overflowing, then now's the time to get them sorted.

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Give your boiler a health check

How’s your boiler doing? You probably haven’t thought about it recently – and won’t unless it suddenly conks out.

That’s why we recommend regular boiler services. They’re health checks for your home’s hot water and will give you early warning of any problems.

There are a couple of other reasons to get a service, though. First of all, bad boilers are a real risk to your family’s health. 4,000 people a year are treated in hospital for carbon monoxide poisoning.

It’ll also help your boiler run more efficiently. Your heating engineer will clear out dust and soot from your boiler which will help it save energy as it runs.

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Fix that roof

Winter storms can play havoc with your roof – and you’ll save time and stress if you get damage patched sooner than later.

What should you be looking out for? The biggest problem signs are cracked, broken or missing tiles or slates. They might not mean an immediate leak but it’ll often develop over time. Wind can get under surrounding slates and drive water in.

Also, keep an eye out for any damage around chimneys or to flashing (which is thin waterproofing where two surfaces meet).

A professional roofer will tell you the best way to get things sorted. You won’t always need scaffolding: often roofers can use ladders or cherry pickers to keep costs down. But whatever it needs, don’t put it off!

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