Regular maintenance is vital for all properties, regardless of age, scale or purpose. Now entering its 13th year, the SPAB’s annual National Maintenance Week brings practical and straightforward advice on maintenance and repairs to everyone who looks after a property.

This year, Loyd Grossman leads the campaign to encourage owners of all sorts of buildings  to be aware of the importance of regular care. It’s a message that’s relevant to home owners and to anyone who cares for a property.

Earlier in autumn SPAB took Loyd to the beautifully maintained roof of St James’ Church Piccadilly to give him a bird’s-eye view of the nooks and crannies that can cause problems if leaves, twigs, nests and other seasonal debris are left uncleared.

Loyd said: “As Chairman of the Churches Conservation Trust, I’m already very familiar with the maintenance challenges faced by significant, historic buildings which don’t conform to a standard pattern. Careful, planned and regular maintenance is vital to ensure that they have a future as well as a past. But that message is equally applicable to buildings of all types and all ages.

Don’t forget National Gutters Day this year!

On founding the Society back in 1877 one of the clarion calls of William Morris was: “Put protection in place of restoration. Stave off decay by daily care.” That simple message is as vital today as it was 137 years ago.

Our Top Tips this National Gutter Maintenance Week are easy to carry out and could save you a lot of money!

  1. Look for blocked downpipes (best done during heavy rain to see water coming from any leaky joints – in dry weather look for stained brickwork).
  2. Check ground level gullies and drains to make sure they are clear of debris like leaves, twigs and even things like balls and toys – and have them cleaned out if necessary.
  3. Every autumn, clear any plants, leaves and silt from gutters, hopperheads, flat roofs and drainage channels. It’s a good idea to do this in spring too.
  4. Remove potentially damaging vegetation from behind downpipes by cutting back or removing the plant altogether.
  5. Use a hand mirror to look behind rainwater pipes as splits and cracks in old cast iron and aluminium often occur here and are not easily noticed.
  6. Fit bird/leaf guards to the tops of soil pipes and rainwater outlets to prevent blockages
  7. Have gutters refixed if they are sloping the wrong way or discharging water onto the wall.
  8. Make sure that replacement gutters are made of the same material as the originals (on older houses, this is sometimes lead, but more usually cast iron).
  9. Regular painting of cast iron is essential to prevent rust – and keeps your property looking good!
  10. Don’t undertake routine maintenance work at high level unless you are accompanied and have suitable equipment.  If in doubt always seek help from a professional.

National Gutters Day took place on Friday 28 November 2014 and is a timely reminder to building owners that just a few minutes spent clearing weeds and debris, or just a few pounds spent to mend a leaky gutter can save many hundreds, and possibly thousands of pounds. Watch this space for the 2015 release date!

Stafford Rainwater Systems serve the Nation to ensure every building is suitably cared for and well maintained. Call our office on 0161 482 9898 to speak to a friendly operator to discuss further.

With thanks to