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Repairing brickwork this New Year

During the winter weather, cracks and gaps in external brickwork can become larger, thanks to the freeze and thaw process. This can eventually lead to larger cracks and gaps that cause water ingress and damp. As a result, repairing this brickwork is crucial for the safety and security of your property. Repairing external brickwork is a job that should be completed by the professionals. Especially if this is part of a structural wall. Here at Gilston Building Services, we are brickwork experts. And we provide a range of high quality building services across the North West. This is our guide to everything you should know about repairing brickwork this New Year.

Repairing brickwork this New Year

Repairing brickwork generally takes a number of different forms, depending on the faults and problems caused by the damage. This includes:

  • Replacing crumbling bricks
  • fixing point-work/re-pointing

Replacing crumbling bricks

One of the most common problems that can occur with external, exposed brickwork, is that over time, this can crumble. This is caused by a range of factors, including:

  • Frost damage- the repeated freeze and thaw process that occurs during winter months causes moisture inside the brick to contract and expand. This leads to the brick losing its topmost layer, and beginning to crumble.
  • Incorrect mortar- if the mortar used in the construction of the brickwork is too dense, the bricks will be restricted in their natural expansions, and this will cause the brickwork to crumble.

Re-pointing brickwork

The visible edge of the mortar joints between the masonry is known as pointing. Over time, these can be damaged by weather and natural movement, and this means that your point-work will need to be repaired. Re-pointing is common brickwork repair task, but it should always be handled by the professionals for a stylish, professional finish.

For more information or advice, get in touch with the experts today, here at Gilston Building Services.

External rendering maintenance

External rendering is applied not only for additional curb appeal, but also to protect your building from weather damage and water damage. By applying a thin layer of a cement, sand and lime mix, exterior plastering, or rendering, can provide an additional level of security for your brickwork, as well as little more insulation for your property. However, to maintain these benefits all year round, you should be sure to carry out any external rendering maintenance, before winter really sets in. So, what does this involve? Well, here at Gilston Building Services, we are Southport’s leading building services experts. And this is out guide to everything you should know about taking care of your external rendering.

What does external rendering maintenance involve?

Do make sure your rendering is in tip top condition, you should:

  • Complete a thorough quality check on your existing rendering. Make notes of any hairline cracks, bare patches of brickwork, chips or bulging render. These can all indicate problems for your property, if not rectified as soon as possible.
  • Make any necessary repairs, or call a professional team, depending on the level of damage.

Repairing external render

To repair your external render, you should consult with a professional, for specific guidance about your individual rendering issue. This could include:

  • Exposed brickwork- if your rendering has been damaged by strong winds and bad weather, chunks of the render may be missing, leading to exposed brickwork. This can be repaired by a localised re-render of the area. This will involve removing any hollow, loose and cracked render, to expose bare patches of wall. The wall will need time to dry out before new rendering is applied.
  • Hairline cracks- if you notice any hairline cracks in your rendering, these should be sealed immediately. Failure to act could result in water getting in between the rendering and the brickwork, and then freezing during the winter. The freeze/thaw action will expand the gap, and can case larger cracks or bulging rendering. You can prevent this using a sealant, or by repairing patches of the rendering.

For more information or advice, get in touch today.

Roofing maintenance tasks for autumn

We offer a variety of services, here at Gilston Building Services. From bricklaying and plastering, to roofing and guttering, we can take care of a wide range of building tasks. At this time of year, roofing and guttering is very important. Autumn in the UK is known for heavy rain, sudden drops in temperature, and strong winds. So what are the most important roofing maintenance tasks for autumn? And can this make a difference to your home?

What are the important roofing maintenance tasks for autumn?

So, which roofing maintenance tasks should you focus on this autumn? Well, this will depend on the type of roof, and the building materials. But in general, you will need to consider:

  • Repairing any loose tiles or areas of felt roofing- because autumn will be bringing colder weather, and lots of rain, any issues with your roof will need to be repaired. This generally means making sure the roof is fully watertight and secure.
  • Checking the flashing- chimney flashing and gable flashing will need to be checked in the autumn, and any repairs will need to be made. This will help keep your home protected from the elements, and prevent any leaks or water damage.
  • Check flat roofs for debris, standing water and leaves- flat roofs, without a pitch, are more at risk during this time of year. You will need to check for any signs of ponding or standing water, and remove any debris you see. This can reduce the risk of needing to repair your flat roof in the near future.

Choose a professional team

For great quality roofing repairs and maintenance, throughout autumn and the rest of the year, you need to choose a professional team. Here at Gilston Building Services we are Southport’s leading building services experts. So for tradesmen you can count on, why not get in touch today?

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Identifying autumnal damp

Now that the leaves are falling, it is a great time to check for damp around your property. Once winter hits, damp will become a lot more noticeable, and will create a lot more problems. As a result, autumn is the perfect time to make sure your home is free of damp. But how can you spot damp, and what types of damp are there? Well, here at Gilston Building services, we are damp experts. This is our guide to identifying autumnal damp.

What is damp?

Damp is a common occurrence in all homes, no matter what they are made of and no matter how old they are. Damp can make homes feel cold, increasing the moisture in the air and walls, and causing ugly patches of moisture. Damp can also cause water damage, and this can decrease the value of your home.

Identifying autumnal damp

There are different types of damp, and these will need to be treated in different ways.

Damp types include:

  • Condensation- If there is too much condensation in your home, water damage can occur. Condensation usually occurs when there is not enough ventilation in a room of your home, which cause water to collect on cold walls and windows, and run into pools. This causes damp patches to form and can lead to unsightly mould.
  • Penetrating- Penetrating damp is caused by problems with the exterior of your property. Leaks or roof issues can lead to gaps through which water can penetrate your home. Alternatively, broken guttering and down-pipes can cause water damage to the exterior, which will eventually permeate your home. Because penetrating damp has a obvious cause, your damp issue can easily be rectified by fixing the initial problem.
  • Rising- Finally, Rising damp is an issue that can occur from moisture rising from ground level, up through the brickwork.

Treating damp

Any type of damp will need the attention of a building professional. Here at Gilston Building Services, we are experts when it comes to damp. For professional advice and support, get in touch today.

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Changing your driveway

Is your driveway looking tired? Made from the wrong type of material for your car? Or is it just add odds with the aesthetic of your home? Whatever your driveway issue, why not get in touch with the team today, here at Gilston Building Services, for professional replacement or repair? But how important is your driveway? Well, we feel that the driveway is one of the most important exterior features of your home, and installing a high quality driveway is a practical choice. That’s why you might consider changing your driveway this autumn, for convenience and practicality.

Changing your driveway

The condition and style of your driveway can have a range of practical advantages and effects, and its important to make sure your driveway is right for you. Changes to your driveway could include:

  • Removing stairs for a slope or ramp instead- at the end of your driveway, there may be stairs leading to the door, or to the footpath. Replacing these with a ramp can make your driveway safer for young children and elderly adults, as well as making your home accessible for wheelchair users.
  • Changing your driveway construction material- from chippings and gravel, to paved driveways, your driveway can be made from a variety of materials. These can have a practical effect on your vehicle. For example, some chippings causing windscreen and glass damage when driving, while paved driveways can be very slippy when wet. Choosing a driveway material to suit your requirements can be a good option.

Hire a professional

For any changes to your driveway, you should hire a professional team. This can help ensure that your project is completed effectively, and within the timescale. But it also means that your new driveway will be compliant with any standards or regulations in place in your area. Here at Gilston Building Services, we are reliable professionals that you can count on.

Garden wall building and repair

With the weather heating up, it’s the perfect time for outdoor meals and BBQs. But if you’ve been spending more time outdoors this summer, you might have noticed a number of potential building issues. From clogged gutters, to gaps in exterior rendering, the weather can take a big toll on your property. This includes the garden wall and boundaries, which can begin to wear away, and be unstable for a number of reasons including root damage, frost damage and accidental damage. Here at Gilston Building Services, we are leading building experts. So if you have a garden wall that needs building or repairing, we can help you in a number of different ways.

Garden wall building and repair

We offer a range of solutions to a variety of garden wall issues, including:

  • Building or rebuilding- we can replace an existing garden boundary with a solid wall in the style of your choice. From decorative brickwork, to dry stonewalling, we can create something that matches the style of your property, with all the right dimensions too.
  • Repair- we can remove and rebuild any wall that is beyond repair, but we can also frequently repair a lot of damage to any type of wall too. This includes re-pointing the wall in any style or colour you want. This includes patch pointing i.e. redoing the missing mortar or re-pointing of the entire facade in a range of colours of your choice.
  • Render- we can also render your garden wall to protect this from damage and create something that fits with the desired aesthetic.

Building a new garden wall is a secure, and attractive way to mark the boundaries of your property, and this can even be decorative too, while garden wall repair can breathe a new lease of life into any property. Why not get in touch with the experts at Gilston Building Services today?

Install a new patio this summer

From brickwork and paving, to professional plastering, here at Gilston Building Services we provide a variety of high quality building solutions for your home or property. This includes creating stylish and attractive patio features. And with the warm weather finally set to arrive, it could be a great option to install a new patio this summer.

Install a new patio this summer: the considerations

No matter how large or small your outdoor space is, it can always be improved with an attractive outdoor dining or seating area. And that’s exactly what a new patio will provide. But how can you make sure your patio will be right for your space? Well, there are some things to consider, including:

  • The type of patio you want to create- you could opt for stylish paving slabs, outdoor tiles, or even decking to create a stylish and attractive seating area outside. Choose the option that best suits the style of your home, both internally and externally.
  • The size of the patio area- the size of the patio area will depend on your own preferences, and the total size of your outdoor space. Some people opt to create a small patio area, with the rest of the space used for gardening or as a lawn. While others will opt for an area that is mostly patio, with small flowerbed built in around the edges. The more patio you have, the less maintenance your garden will be, but also, the less plants you can grow.
  • Working with professionals- professional building experts, like us here at Gilston Building Services, can provide a high quality finish and excellent results. In contrast, when laying your own patio you might encounter a myriad of problems and issues, and you might not get the result or quality you were aiming for.

For more information or advice, get in touch with the professionals today, here at Gilston Building Services.

What are the advantages of decorative paving tiles?

Here at Gilston Building Services, we offer a full range of building and construction services. This includes plastering, brickwork and paving. Paving is something that is often overlooked by home owners and property developers, but professional decorative paving can actually bring a range of advantages. But what are the advantages of decorative paving tiles? And why should you choose them?

What are the advantages of decorative paving tiles?

Decorative paving tiles are paving tiles or slabs that are designed to be visually attractive and appealing. These can be applied collectively to create to stunning layout or pattern. Or you can use individually patterned tiles. So, what are the advantages of decorative paving tiles? Well there are several, including:

  • Creating a stunning feature- whether its your front drive, or your back patio, decorative paving tiles can help you create a stylish and visually attractive feature. This can add new depth and personality to your home.
  • Increase the curb appeal of your property- if you are trying to sell or rent your property, you need it to look fantastic. One way to do this is by ensuring that your front drive is visually appealing. This means removing any weeds, cleaning your flowerbeds, and considering attractive and stylish paving options.
  • Revamp your home- if you are looking for a way to brighten up your property, and maybe leave your mark on the design and style of the property, decorative paving slabs could be a great idea. Especially with summer fast approaching. After all, a stylish patio could be just what you need for this years BBQ season.

For more information or advice, get in touch with the team today, here at Gilston Building Services.

Why should you check your gutters this Spring?

Spring is now in full swing. The plants are blooming and the temperature is starting to heat up. But before you unpack the BBQ, there are some maintenance jobs you should consider tackling, to keep your property in full working order. One of these, is checking the gutters. But why should you check your gutters this Spring? And what should you be looking out for? Well, here at Gilston Building Services, we are Preston’s leading building professionals. From brickwork to guttering, we provide high quality, effective services. As a result, we have produced this guide to the importance of checking your gutters.

Why should you check your gutters this Spring?

  • The weather- Over the winter, snow and ice are expected. But in the spring, one thing you can usually be sure off are strong rain showers and downpours. If your gutters are blocked, or have been damaged by the winter weather, they will be unable to effectively transport water away from your roof, and this can cause water damage to your external brickwork.
  • Plants and flowers- gutters that are not regularly maintained can become home to a range of weeds and plant-life. In spring, this will all begin to grow again, leading to blocked pipes and water build up, which could cause physical damage to the guttering, or to your external brickwork. It could also lead to burst pipes, which can be expensive and challenging to repair.
  • Leaves and debris- its not just living plants that cause an issue. Leaves and debris that have built up from last autumn are the most common culprits of blocked downspouts and guttering problems. These can be transported from the guttering, into the pipes, simply by the power of heavy rainfall.

For more information or for professional gutter repair, get in touch with the team today, here at Gilston Building Services.

Spring maintenance jobs to tackle today

With Spring just around the corner, and the weather beginning to change, it is the perfect time to take care of your spring maintenance. All buildings, large and small, domestic and commercial, need some maintenance work each year. Especially if you want to keep your property in tip top condition. Here at Gilston Building Services, we are leading building industry experts. And this is our guide to the key spring maintenance jobs to tackle today.

Spring maintenance jobs to tackle today

  1. Checking the roof- for flat roofs, winter can cause problems with freezing and thawing cycles. You should check your roof over for signs of damage. You might also notice some standing water, and this will need to be seen by a professional. For pitched roofs, you want to look out for missing slates, and gaps in the flashing or pointing.
  2. Checking the gutters- winter might be wet and cold, but April is often one of the wettest months. Making sure your gutters are not blocked is essential to be able to clear the water. Otherwise, you could find that your building suffers from water damage, or water ingress, which could be very problematic.
  3. Checking your brickwork- again winter can be a challenge for your brickwork. In fact the freeze and thaw cycle can lead to cracks developing, which could damage your building.


If you notice any issues when checking your property, you should seek immediate, professional support. Any damage to the outside of your property, no matter how small, can cause a lot of expensive destruction in the long run.

For professional assistance or repairs to your building this Spring, get in touch with the experts today, here at Gilston Building Services. From brickwork to paving, roofing to plastering, we are the team you can count on. Get in touch today.