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  1. R

    Smart meters - who knew?

    I’m with British Gas for gas & electric. For months they pestered me to get a smart meter and eventually I gave in. That was 4 years ago. now the “in-home device” (the thing you monitor in your living room or wherever) has stopped working. I contacted BG and to my surprise was told “tough”...
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    New windows and condensation

    Had the whole house double glazed a couple of months ago, with upvc frames. Now it’s getting colder I’ve noticed that in the morning we get condensation on the inside of our bedroom window. The rest of the house has it on the outside. We’ve not put the heating on yet. Not had this with our old...
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    Gas cost and smart meter

    I have a smart meter. My CH system is the conventional sort with header tank in loft and hot water cylinder. During the past few days, only two days (alternate days) did I have the boiler heat water (there was enough hot water stored). On both days my smart meter recorded .51p and .53p in...
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    gutter down pipe and soil pipe

    I have a problem whereby my 1920’s built end terrace house has a single Down pipe from the gutters that empties via a gully into an inspection chamber (if that the right word, its the area covered by the manhole cover), then into the main under the road. This is actually our next door neighbours...
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    Triple or double glazed?

    Just been collecting a few estimates for having replacement windows, ours are currently 25 years old, most are now suffering from misting and the upvc frames are the sort that have the glass fitted from the outside. So time to replace.I’m on a budget so need to be careful with money. We have...
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    Window openings - building regs question

    Our ground floor living room, a typical 2 rooms knocked into one set-up, has a wide 3 pane / window bow at the front, the rear has French doors with side windows. All are pre2001 upvc that needs replacing because the glass is fitted from the outside and most panes are now either blown or showing...
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    Internal cladding advice

    Part of my house is of solid brick construction the small sitting room gets very cold in winter so I’m thinking of insulating the outside walls with some kind of foam or polystyrene type product then plasterboard over. I need to keep the thickness of the insulation as thin as possible to avoid...
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    Conventional gas boiler not fully heating water

    I’ve an Ideal Classic 50 conventional boiler : pumped radiators, gravity feed to hot water cylinder. It was last serviced September last year. over the last couple of weeks I have noticed that the hot water produced is nowhere near as hot as it was. Three weeks ago I would have to add cold...
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    Gravity fed radiator problem

    I have an older CH system whereby the radiators are pumped and hot what is gravity fed - including the small bathroom radiator (which is on the hot water circuit & and sited next to airing cupboard). Recently this gravity fed radiator has been getting cold at the bottom and part-way up the...
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    Which trade?

    A large-ish lump of render appeared on my drive this morning, this has crumbled away from my chimney stack. As I don’t have a head for heights, I need to get someone in but who? General builder, roofer, plasterer? I don’t know which would be best suited to the work. please advise
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    Flourescent light hum/buzz

    We have a 5ft flourescent light in our kitchen, about a month ago the light wouldn’t turn on, just a very dim glow each end of the tube. I changed the starter first, simply because I had one to hand, that didn’t do the job so I purchased a new tube which did work but was still a little slow at...
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    Cooker hood ducting question

    we are thinking about installing a cooker hood to help with condensation and cooking smells in our small galley kitchen. Our cooker stands in front of a boxed section, which is 620mm wide that hides the mains-in water pipe, gas pipe and higher up the wall, the pipes in and out of the central...
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    Breathable membrane problem

    just been up in the loft, house is a 1920’s semi, and noticed that the existing membrane between the tiles and roof joist (rafters) is worn and torn in several places, some quite badly. Is there anything I can do besides have the tiles off the roof and relay the whole roof? - I don’t have a big...
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    Coving problem on stairs

    Our hall and landing is being plastered/skimmed so we can just paint the walls in future. My wife would like coving put up, which I can do easily but at a loss as to how I would handle the section photographed below. Where the ceiling slopes up from downstairs do I put coving on that section or...
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    Colouring cement

    i need to mix a small quantity of mortar - literally a bucket full at most! That needs to be either dark blue (as blue engineering bricks) or black. Buying a cement colorant for such a small quantity seems such a waste of money (Northern upbringing kicking in!). Does anyone know how I can...
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    Pointing gun mortar

    when building my 'kit' conservatory, I installed a Durabase base which has a brick slip base which was supplied with a pointing compound made by Parex for use in a pointing gun - this was dead easy! I am now going to repoint the adjoining house wall and thought I would use the gun with the same...
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    How to choose LED bulbs

    Im looking at changing our household lights with LED bulbs but totally lost! So far I have been told by a shopkeeper that the rule of thumb is go for "warm" lights in all rooms except bathroom & kitchen, and that 10% of the wattage you have now will be the equivalent in LED i.e. 60watt 'old...
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    CCTV viewable via 3G on iphone

    A friend of mine is looking for an inexpensive CCTV camera so that can he can monitor (with video image) on an iPhone. Although monitoring a drive leading up to an agricultural building, it can be an internal camera as it will be mounted in a covered area. I have done a lot of searching but...
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    Membrane is flaking away - what are my options?

    AFter a recent visit to my loft I discovered that much of the membrane between the batons and rafters Has flaked away or in a state where is flakes away at the touch. I wonder what my options are? I really do not want (can't afford) to,have the tiles ripped off and the membrane re-laid and...
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    Roof insulation costs

    For a while now I've been looking at these ads in the National Press from companies who spray foam on the underside of your roof tiles to insulate your loft, adhere the tiles to the roof and -no doubt- empty your bank account! Does anyone have any idea what these companies charge, roughly...
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