Maintenance

Lack of maintenance is a key reason why old buildings deteriorate. Find practical articles on how to look after your historic building.

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Sash window maintenance

This article explores the basic maintenance steps you can take to keep sash windows both functioning and looking elegant.

Rafter-level insulation

This is the installation of thermal insulation at the level of rafters – the inclined timber members that form the top of the frame supporting a pitched roof.

Timber floor structures

Sometimes strengthened without good reason, or destructively levelled out, old floors are an oft-abused treasure. This article explains how best to treat them.

 

Timber floorboards

Repair not replace. Imperfections can contribute to historical interest and should not necessarily be eradicated - or used as a reason to lay a new floor when repairs are often feasible.

Flooding

The flood risk is increasing – but there are fears that damage to old buildings is being compounded by unsuitable responses promoted by many insurance companies, loss adjusters and contractors.

Chimney maintenance

The chimneys of old buildings need more frequent maintenance than masonry less exposed to the weather but this is often neglected because of difficult access.

Timber-decaying fungi

A holistic approach to fungal decay – wet and dry rot – minimises damage, expense and the use of chemicals. This article explains how to fight an old adversary.

Decorative leadwork

Beaten, twisted, cut or cast, ornate designs bear out the skill and artistry of early craftsmen. And surviving examples are under threat.

 

Roof maintenance

Lack of maintenance is a key reason why old buildings deteriorate. Maintenance essentially means preventing rainwater getting in where it can cause harm. Water is potentially most likely to enter through the roof, so putting right minor problems here before they worsen can avert the need for more extensive repair.

Timber windows

The unnecessary replacement of old timber windows is of continuing concern to the SPAB. Such work can diminish both the character and value of an older building. Neighbouring properties could well suffer too.