February 12 2019 0Comment

Q: Now That The Warmer Weather Is Here, What Should I Be Doing To Maintain My Early 1900’s Bungalow?

A: Summertime is a great time to complete maintenance that will not only keep your home in great condition but also add value to your home. With an early 1900’s bungalow, it is even more important to ensure regular maintenance to ensure your home retains its original features and charm. 

Here are my 8 TOP summer maintenance tasks:

Wash the exterior and windows of your home. Mould and moss on dingy roofs and grotty decks are not only horrible from the curb, but can also contribute to an array of other household problems and even shorten the lifespan of your home. While pressure washing can damage your home and lead to expensive repairs, soft washing is a safe, eco-friendly, biodegradable option that can boost curb appeal, increase energy savings and extend the lifespan of your home.

Check the roof space and any space between the ground and your home.  You want to be checking for any pests, water leakage and daylight poking through.

Spray for spiders, ants, cockroaches and other creepy crawlers.  This will eliminate damage caused by insects, as well keep it free from any unwanted visitors.

Check the silicone joins in your bathroom and kitchen. A well-maintained silicone seal means that you cabinetry, tiles, sinks and benchtops are easier to clean and are less prone to water damage and discolouration.  If you find any gaps, there are plenty of tutorials available on YouTube to help you replace the silicone.

Have you checked to see if your shower/bath is leaking? If left to leak, you may end up with rotten flooring. Tell-tale signs of a leaking shower or bath are excessive mould. It is relatively easy to see if your shower or bath is leaking by following these steps:

  1. Place several strips of duct tape over the drain. The tape should be about as wide a paper plate. Cover the drain entirely and make it as watertight as possible.
  2. Fill the shower pan/bath with water. Pour enough water from a bucket or use another source of water other than the shower/ bath tap to make the standing water about three centimetres deep. You don’t want to use the shower/bath tap because you want to know if the leak is coming from the tap or the pan/bath.
  3. Look for water around the base of the shower pan/bath. You may need to remove carpeting or look for pooling beyond the tile. Go to the floor below, into the basement or into crawl space to see whether there is any evidence of water.

You should also check to see if there are any leaks in the silicone in your shower’s wall channels. This can be done simply by pointing the shower head at the wall channels and checking for leaks.

As you own a home that was built in the early 1900s, it is important to check all of your exterior timber joinery for rot. Rotten timber joinery can mean that your home is not watertight, or secure from burglary.  If you find that you do have some rotten joinery, our sister company Next Level Joinery can help you decide if it is worth repairing or replacing.

Keeping your gutters clean is a simple job that can help prevent problems like blocked downpipes and rainwater leaking into your ceiling cavity. Dried out leaf litter can also be a fire hazard, so make sure you clear all of it out.

If your home still has the original chimney, it is worth inspecting the brickwork for any cracks or damage. This will ensure its stays watertight and maintains its original character.  Leave cleaning your chimney to a professional as they have the tools to make sure it is done safely.

My advice is to try and stay on top of home maintenance; your pocket will thank you.

Brendon Sowerby is the Founder of Next Level Construct, an award-winning end-to-end residential construction company specialising in renovations, extensions and new builds. Brendon has worked in the building trade for over 17 years, meaning he knows the ins and outs of the industry.

Got a building question? Ask Brendon on brendon@nextlevelconstruct.co.nz