Any builder, be they a professional or a DIY enthusiast, will need to know their way around mixing mortar. A hugely popular product in the building trade (hence the term bricks and mortar being used to describe many buildings), mixing the appropriate amount of mortar for your use can be something of a precise science.
Installing a wood burning stove into your home is a great way adding character to your property – who doesn’t love the idea of watching logs burn on a chilly winter’s night? It’s also a much more even distribution of warmth than central heating, and potentially much more cost effective and building up energy bills.
Who Can Install a Wood Burning Stove?
You can – provided you comply with certain criteria. There is no law that states wood burners must be installed by a particular professional, but these log burners are covered by the restrictions of building regulations in the UK.
Whilst only a qualified electrician is permitted to install a new circuit for an electric cooker, any competent DIY enthusiast is welcome to replace or upgrade their gas oven to an electrical alternative. This guide will talk you through the process of installing and wiring an electric cooker.
What Preparation is Needed to Install an Electric Cooker?
Firstly, you’ll need to be aware of your requirements. Electric cookers draw a great deal of power – more than a gas oven, because they generate a larger, more evenly distributed amount of intense heat.
Screws are undeniably the most populous item in the tool shed of any DIY enthusiast, coming as they do in a multitude of different shapes and sizes.
There are two primary areas of confusion when it comes to screws, however; the difference between wood screws and sheet metal screws, and the eternal struggle of understanding imperial vs. metric screw sizes. This guide will assist with both of these problems.
What is a Wood Screw?
Wood screws are designed for connecting items to a wooden base (for example, attaching metal coat hooks to a wooden rail).
A water-based decorative covering, artex is usually used on ceilings or walls in order to apply a pattern. While was undoubtedly considered pleasing to the eye during the peak of its popularity, the downside of artex is that the product often contains traces of asbestos – something that is hugely dangerous for people to breathe in.
If you have recently moved into an older property and are unsure when the artex ceiling or walls were installed, or you simply wish to change the aesthetic design to something more to your personal taste, you may wish to consider remove any existing artex from your property.
So, you have taken the time to carefully and lovingly apply plaster to a wall or ceiling, and understandably you are itching to finish the job and add a lick of paint. You’ll have to be a little patient though, as painting over wet plaster before it has had a chance to set can create a lot more work for you in the longer term.
How Long Should I Wait Before Painting Plaster?
How long is a piece of string? The period of time that fresh plaster needs to dry varies from surface to surface, with circumstances such as the temperature of the rooms in question and the size of area covered.
We intend no offence when we say this, but if you do not have a working knowledge of the colours found within a traditional British fixed wiring socket you should probably not be attempting any electrical-based DIY. Electricity can be hugely dangerous and is not something to experiment with as you look into improving your home improvement skills.
If in any doubt call in a professional electrician, for both your short- and long-term safety (faulty wiring can cause a fire), which is why legal guidelines dictate that anybody working with electricity must have at least a level of competence in working with electricity. If, however, you are prepared and qualified to complete wiring projects yourself, or would simply like to develop an understanding about wiring colours, this guide will talk you through British wiring.
Concrete is firmly established as one of the toughest and most durable substances used in any kind of DIY project, but how much do you really know about this material? Anybody inexperienced in handling such construction projects should always call in a professional tradesperson to assist with any work they may be looking to undertake.
If you’re adamant that this is a task that you’d like to tackle yourself however, this guide will ensure that you are fully equipped with all the information you’ll need to do so.
If you have the skill to do so you can save yourself a great deal of money by wiring or rewiring lights in your own home – it’s a comparatively basic procedure, and one that a confident homeowner may feel that they can take on without the assistance of a professional electrician.
Of course, there are a number of safety concerns that surround such a project. Electricity and live wiring is not something to experiment with, so if you have never undertaken such a task before do not even consider doing so without the help of a qualified tradesperson.
A new set of windows can liven up the appearance of your house and add value to your property in the long-run. New windows will also increase your insulation levels, making your home more energy efficient and bringing heating bills down.
So what’s the cost of replacement windows?
A rough estimate per window fitted is £400. Doors can be around £550 for UPVC and £900 for composite. But of course, this all depends on a number of factors. And if you live in London, you can expect to pay 10-15% more for windows.
With house prices as they are you might be thinking about building your own home. This can work out really well but you need to know how much building a house from scratch is actually going to cost.
A general range to go by for a self-build is anywhere from £300 per m2 to £3,000 per m2. As you can see, this is quite a variation in price from lowest to highest. Location makes a difference – it’s more expensive in London and the South to build a house. But aside from that, there are a number of things that affect price.
Extensions can be a tricky subject. It can be difficult to get a clear understanding of all the rules, regulations and costs. That’s why it’s a good idea to get a proper handle on extension costs before you dive in. It’ even worth using an extension cost calculator to give yourself a general price overview.
But how much does an extension cost?
As with most things, the cost of building an extension varies depending on what you want. Obviously, smaller or less complex extensions are cheaper. Kitchen extension cost, two storey extension cost, single storey extension cost – all of these will differ.
So you’re thinking of getting a loft conversion? Great idea – not only will that extra accommodation provide you and your family with more breathing space, but your home should also fetch a better price when you come to sell-up (around 20% more, in fact, according to the HomeOwners Association). In other words, adding a loft conversion is a win-win – provided, that is, you get the renovation right from the start.
For, as in most areas of life, cutting costs or rushing in without doing proper research always results in regret. So it’s important to take days – and even weeks – to get your head round subjects such as:
Buying a house is an exciting time and once your offer is accepted, do not let the excitement cloud your judgement as far as a house survey is concerned. This article explains why a house survey is a vital step of the house buying process, outlines the types of surveys available and the differences between them and under what circumstances one is preferable over another.
Want to really understand the condition of the house you are buying beyond the new coats of paint? Are there any problems lurking between the surface and can you use any issues to negotiate the asking price down. Sometimes the problems are severe enough for a potential buyer to walk away, in some cases a reduction in asking price smoothes the way and the transaction goes ahead.
The combination boiler, also referred to as the combi boiler, is the most popular boiler type in the UK today. The combi boiler supplies hot water and heating without the need for storage tanks or a cylinder. Combi boilers can be gas, electric or oil fired.
When it comes to boilers, equipment costs are usually lower than the installation and this article will help you choose the best combi boiler. The article will also provide a guide to installation costs as well as the purchase costs for popular combi boilers.
Woodworm is a common problem affecting wooden aspects of many homes around the UK. Woodworm are the larvae of wood-boring beetles, and the most common species is the Common Furniture Beetle. Other common beetles include the following:
- Deathwatch beetle.
- House Longhorn Beetle.
The costs of a woodworm infestation can be immense, not only damaging your furniture, but may also affect the timber structure of your house.
Conserving energy in your home or business property and lowering your carbon footprint overall, are not new practices. That being said, many homeowners will admit there is still room for improvement regarding their consumption of utilities. Heat, particularly a gas furnace, is a major area of concern.
For the past five years, the UK government has provided citizens some incentives to make these commercial and residential energy upgrades, in the form of the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI). In short, the RHI states that you’ll earn a fixed income for every kilowatt hour of renewable heat that you produce.
When you think of the British garden, a swimming pool isn’t something that often springs to mind. The UK’s notoriously turbulent weather and poor climate certainly doesn’t offer much chance of year-round bathing in an outdoor pool. However, the expense of having an indoor pool built are staggering, with costs starting around £60,000 and rising quickly depending on the size and quality. In the right setting and with enough homework, a small pool outside can be a luxury worth having.
Remodelling your home can be quite expensive. Unless you’re careful, even the best budgets can start spiralling out of control. Before you know it, you’ve spent twice as much as you wanted. If you’re striving for high quality at the cheapest price, there are some top ways to save money.
Create a Realistic Budget
One of the most important things to do if you’re trying to keep remodelling costs low is to create a realistic budget. It might not sound it, but allowing a slightly larger budget for a project can actually save you money in the long run. This is because you don’t have to cut corners which can be a false economy, especially if there are major problems and you end up making expensive repairs.
Most roofs are fitted with fascia boards, which are the timbers fixed onto the edges of rafters, hiding them from view. Roofs and roof timbers overhang the walls of a house. Soffits are fitted to bridge the gap between the wall and the edge of the roofline.
The area covered by soffits is not exposed to the weather and so wood is often used to make soffits. However, wood will take in some of the moisture in the air, and over time will warp and distort. Replacing timber fascias and soffits with Upvc is a common job for roofers.