09 Sep

Autumn maintenance checks for your doors and windows

It’s time to schedule your home’s autumn maintenance checks into your diary! Here’s Founder Jonathan Hey’s guide to maintaining your doors and windows and ensuring their quality finish for years to come.

To keep your windows and doors and roof lanterns looking their best long after installation, we recommend a ‘little and often’ approach when it comes to their upkeep. While all our products have exceptional lifespans, their longevity is enhanced when you give them proper care, and you’ll avoid costly repairs and renovation works later. Paint surfaces will last for up to 12 years before they need repainting, and doors, window and roof lantern frames will last for decades to come. 

Clean the glazing correctly

Get rid of unsightly dust and rain marks that may have built up over the warm summer months. Clean using a bundle of clean, dust-free, dry microfiber cloths and a bucket of warm water mixed with a small amount of washing up liquid. If the water is too soapy, you’ll create a build-up of suds on the glass which will leave a residue. Change the water in the bucket as soon as it starts to look too dirty. Wipe the external framework and joinery with a new, clean cloth to remove drips once finished. Clean outer silicone lines on glazing beads with an industrial multipurpose wipe.

Glass can scratch easily, so never use abrasive substances to clean them. It’s essential to avoid hosing you down your windows and doors, as this is an unnatural application that exposes your products to a large volume of water and creates moisture imbalance. Pressure washers may cause movement in the joints.

Check sash window balances

Sash windows should open and close with a smooth sliding motion. Check the balance fixing screw is secure, but do not overtighten. Make sure the bottom fixing brackets are secured to the sash and not damaged or distorted in any way and check the balance tube for signs of damage. Clear any dirt and debris that may have built up at the end of the balance. Clean with a cloth if needed, and re-grease with Castrol spray Spheerol AP2 5. Ensure that all travel stops are in place and that the sash can be moved up to the travel stop.  

Maintain casement windows and door sets

Lubricate window and door hinges with light oil to keep them functioning smoothly, but do not lubricate the friction hinges. Apply a light grease to the espagnolette striker plates and a small amount of WD40 to espagnolette locks to help maintain a smooth open. Clean handles and plates with a soft cloth but never use abrasive cleaners.

Check and maintain ironmongery

Hardware gets the most wear and tear through the day, so a regular maintenance routine is essential, especially if you live in harsh coastal or marine environments where the salt air can cause deterioration. Check handles and locks for any damage and replace parts if required. Inspect all fixing bolts for tightness, including those securing brackets, and tighten if necessary. To help prevent surface corrosion, wash with soap or mild detergent and warm water followed by a rinse with clean cold water and wipe dry.

Clean folding doors and check for smooth movement

Keep tracks, bottom rails, guide rollers and guide channels free from obstruction and excessive dirt or water. Clean the doors down using a damp cloth and mild detergent and wipe dry. Clean hinges and bolts using the same method. Apply a light application of lubrication to internal mechanisms and bolt using a suitable nozzle-spray.

Give your roof lantern a clean

Give your flat roof and capping a wash down using water and mild detergent with a soft brush. Clear gutters from fallen leaves. Take care, as the roof can become very slippery when wet, especially in cold weather. Avoid using heated power washers as this forces massive amounts of water into places that rainwater wouldn’t usually reach. Give any automatic rain sensors on auto vents a wipe too, to keep them clean.

Check paintwork for damage

We recommend that painted surfaces should be lightly washed down with clean water twice a year. Regular cleaning removes dust, insects and other organisms or contaminants that can form a base for algae and fungi growth. Use a mild detergent solution before rinsing thoroughly with clean water. Inspect the paint coating for signs of damage, and immediately repair any cracks to prevent water from getting to the timber below. Abrade the damaged paint area with a fine grade abrasive paper, wash to remove dust and allow to thoroughly dry. Using a good quality synthetic brush or roller, designed for use with acrylic paints, touch in the area using Teknos AQUATOP 2600. Allow to dry for four hours, and then apply a second coat. More extensive damage, such as a deep cut or gouge, will require more work. Rub the damaged area with a medium and then fine grade abrasive paper, wash to remove dust, allow to thoroughly dry and prime with Teknos 2901 in the original colour or a translucent stain. Then apply Teknos 2600 in the appropriate opaque colour, allow to dry for four hours, and then apply a second coat. Do not attempt to paint when the temperature is below 8 degrees Celsius, or if the relative humidity exceeds 85% as the curing and performance of the coating may be impaired.