September has come upon us quickly this year, and now’s the time to be thinking about your garden room’s bi-annual maintenance check. We show you exactly what maintenance is required, and share the eco-friendly products that caught our eye this month.
Last year, we spent some time turning our Essex showroom into an imaginative, stylish space packed with creative interior ideas to help inspire visiting clients. In our opinion, the making of a beautiful bespoke extension comes from really understanding what the homeowners like, and we want to pay attention and see how they feel as they walk around our showroom. One thing our customers always say when they come to see our beautiful orangery for themselves is how noticeable the quality and craftsmanship stands out.
While exceptional quality is one of our main values, we also give credence to ensuring that we run our business in an environmentally responsible manner, and this is also something we like to discuss with our clients. We do everything we can to maintain a low carbon footprint, from the way we run our workshop to the materials we use in our bespoke designs. We invest in the latest waste-reducing machinery to minimise on transportation and use sustainable redwood and Accoya® to the furthest extent possible in our builds. You can find more information about our full environmental policy here.
If you are interested in booking an appointment to visit one of our showrooms, contact us and a member of the team can help.
Maintenance – little and often
Unnecessary waste is a big problem when it comes to the environment, and we believe that the most sustainable products are the ones that you never have to replace. Providing that you give your garden room a little maintenance on a bi-annual basis, the paint surface will stay smooth and crack-free for up to 12 years before they need repainting and your joinery frames will last for 50 years or more.
As the effects of climate change become ever more pressing, as an eco-conscious business, we wanted to round up some of the best products to use when giving your garden room its bi-annual maintenance.
1. Clear fallen leaves from gutters and hoppers
It’s essential that you do this in autumn when the trees start to drop their leaves. Organic debris from gutters can cause water to ingress into your garden room and cause leaks. Check gutters at the joints, and immediately address any issues before the joinery elements become damaged.
Eco-Friendly Suggestion: Home composting is the easiest, most sustainable thing you can do with garden and kitchen waste, and your flower borders will thank you for it. We love these Beehive Composters, as featured in House and Garden.
2. Wash down all paintwork
Your paintwork needs a simple wash down twice a year to clean off any destructive organisms. A mild detergent solution can be used with a synthetic brush and then thoroughly, but don’t use hosepipes or large quantities of water on the product. We recommend that you clean the extended silicone glazing caulking at this time with an industrial wet wipe.
Eco-Friendly Suggestion: We love the eco-friendly, natural and vegan cleaning products from Kinn Living. Their Sweet Orange Washing Up Liquid is fresh and fragrant.
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3. Retouch any chipped paintwork
Check the surfaces for any damage or chips in the paintwork. Look closely at horizontal surfaces, cills and bottom beads. Touch in any damaged areas with a lick of paint. Abrade the area with a fine grade abrasive paper first, then wash away any residual dust and allow to dry. Using a good quality synthetic brush or roller, apply a coat of water-based paint and allow to dry for four hours, before applying a second coat.
For more severe bumps and marks like deeper chips, we recommend that you use a medium grade abrasive paper first, and then use the fine grade abrasive paper. Once washed and dried, apply a grain sealer to the affected area before painting.
Eco-Friendly Suggestion: Paints and sealers are available from Westbury, and we can help you choose the best products. Teknos uses high-quality raw materials during their paint manufacturing process, which results in a high-performing paint product with a high solids content. Sustainability takes a predominant role across their operations and supply chain, and the paint products have no or low VOC content.
4. Wash down the flat roof and roof cappings
You should give your roof and cappings a good wash down twice a year, using water and mild detergent with a soft brush. Take care, as the top can become very slippery when wet, especially in cold weather. Avoid using heated power washers and take care using a hose, as you want to avoid forcing water through the glass. Give any automatic rain sensors on auto vents a wipe too, to keep them clean.
Eco-Friendly Suggestion: Instead of using single-use wipes or kitchen roll, use cloths which create zero waste. These reusable bamboo multi-purpose wipes from Wearth London tick every box. They are plastic-free and handmade in the UK from organic bamboo.
Hardware such as bolts and hinges get a lot of wear and tear over six months. Inspect all fixing bolts for tightness every six months, including those securing brackets, and tighten if necessary. Lubricate door hinges with light oil if required and apply WD40 to espagnolette locks to help things feel smooth. Do not lubricate friction hinges, however. Check for any wear and replace any parts that seem excessively worn. Check door tracks for any obstructions and keep clean from dirt or excessive water.
Our door handles are factory finished with a protective colourless lacquer which keeps the handles in pristine condition. This coating can be vulnerable to salt air, and industrial pollution can cause it to break down. Cleaning with soapy water and the occasional application of wax polish will prolong the life quality of your handles. Avoid metal polish or any abrasive cleaner.
Eco-Friendly Suggestion: Avoid using wax which is made from cheaper white spirit, a man-made synthetical chemical solvent. Try the bee-friendly, natural Beeswax Furniture Polish handmade the traditional way from Cambridge Traditional Products.
7. Underfloor heating
It’s a good idea to turn on your underfloor heating and get the systems working again. It’s good practice to do this in autumn as the system has laid dormant over the summer and you have time to fix any issues before the colder winter weather arrives.