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Got time off? try these TAFE NSW tips on tasks to tackle around the home


Got time off? try these TAFE NSW tips on tasks to tackle around the home

You can only spend so much time at the beach or lazing by the pool over the Christmas holiday period, so consider spending some time maintaining what is likely the most expensive investment you’ll ever make - your home.


TAFE NSW Head Teacher of Carpentry and Building David Coyle suggests there are small maintenance jobs that will give you maximum value for minimum effort.


“Some of these tasks should be part of the regular maintenance you do around your property, others are specific to the way your building is constructed and its reaction to the weather conditions.


  • During the warmer months it is wise to keep your gutters clean for fire safety reasons and to stop storm overflow. The use of a step ladder with a working platform is always advisable for this task. Don’t stop at the gutters though, any grated drains around your property should be cleared of leaves and mud. This way you will be able to enjoy the cooling effects of a summer storm without the worry of gutters overflowing.


  • While outside, it is wise to keep a watchful eye out for termite activity. If your house was constructed on a concrete slab, look around the perimeter for any tell-tale mud tunnels at the top of the slab and the bottom of the brickwork. If you spot any, call a qualified pest controller to manage the problem before it gets out of hand. If your house has a suspended timber floor, you may have to have a look under the house for similar activity. Keep in mind garden beds directly against the house are an invitation for termites.


  • The lack of ground water due to drought will impact the movement of the doors and windows and will cause the ground under your house to shrink, resulting in unusual movement in the structure which can cause doors to stick and bind. Look at the gaps around your door from the inside and if they are uneven, there has been ground movement. If the gap is uneven and the door still operates, don’t worry. When it rains, everything will return to normal. However, if the door is binding and not locking, some adjustment may need to be made. If you’re a handy person you’ll know what to do here, if not I suggest you contact a licenced handyman to solve your problem.


  • Christmas means barbecues, parties, and fun with family and friends. Is your deck up to it?  The Building Advisory Service of the Royal Australian Institute of Architects estimates six per cent of Australian homes have a timber deck and about two per cent of those are at risk of collapse. A deck in poor repair will rot and become dangerous. Check for wood rot and rusted fixtures. Always be up to date with painting the deck to protect it from weather. Also check that the handrail is still strong enough to withstand a few people leaning on it.


TAFE NSW offers a range of building and landscape construction courses that can lead to some exciting job opportunities. To find out more, phone 13 16 01 or visit