Your conservatory is a valuable asset to your home and it requires regular maintenance to keep it looking almost as good as new and working smoothly. While there may be lots of little jobs you can do yourself, for other tasks it’s best to call in the experts. Follow our guide of dos and don’ts and you won’t go far wrong!
1. Pressure Washers
Don’t ever use a pressure washer on your conservatory. While a pressure washer is great for cleaning many outdoor areas, it can cause huge problems for your conservatory. The high pressure of the water can easily damage the seals and coatings and cause the ingress of air and water into the structure. It’s fine to use an ordinary garden hose to remove loose dirt but for stubborn dirt, it’s always best to use elbow grease.
2. Regular Maintenance
Do carry out an annual ‘minor’ service on your conservatory just as you would with your car. This should include lubricating all the locks, handles and hinges; clearing the guttering, downpipes and drainage slots; cleaning all the window and door jambs; cleaning the finials and crestings; and applying protective oil to the lead flashing.
3. Going too far
Don’t attempt to climb on the roof or to reach the high points around your conservatory without the correct equipment. There is a high risk of falling and you could also easily damage the structure, creating leaks within it. It’s unlikely that your window cleaner will have specialised access equipment and devices to spread the load, so it’s best to book a conservatory care service with a conservatory valet expert to clean and service the hard to reach areas.
4. Glass care
Do clean the glass regularly, both inside and out. The frequency with which it will need to be done will depend on the orientation of your conservatory. If it’s in a bright, sunny position, rain water will evaporate more quickly than if it’s in a shady spot. You’ll find that shadier conservatories tend to get dirty more quickly because the dirt in the water stays on the glass for longer.
5. Types of cleaners
Don’t use spirit-based cleaners or thinners - even on stubborn stains – because they could attack and damage the plastic sections of your conservatory. You should also never use metallic abrasive cloths or pads as they will damage the glass units, seals and plastics.
6. Dealing with Guttering
Do keep the gutters around your conservatory clear; this is vital to ensure there is free drainage into the downpipe and drains. A build-up of dirt and leaves will quickly block the gutters and could cause them to overflow. If not managed properly, this excess water could damage your conservatory and potentially your home too. It’s important to see inside the gutters to check they are free-flowing and able to do their job efficiently, so this task can’t be done without a ladder.
Don’t attempt to ‘hook’ dirt or leaves out of the gutters with a long implement while standing on the ground. As well as the potential to injure yourself by overreaching, you may also cause damage to the gutters as they are not designed to carry much weight. Make sure you can see and reach right into the gutter in order to remove any debris and ensure a free flow of water.
8. The bigger picture
Do book an in-depth ‘major’ conservatory care service every two or three years with a conservatory valet expert. This will ensure that all those hard to reach areas are cleaned and restored to their former glory. It will also mean all the glass windows and doors can be polished as well as cleaned, to protect them from the elements for the next few seasons to come.