Main­te­nance tips and DIY ad­vice for the in­te­rior of your home

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Although the NHBRC is not re­spon­si­ble for main­te­nance and DIY, here are a few is­sues for you to con­sider: Sep­a­rat­ing walls Walls sep­a­rat­ing you from your neigh­bour will gen­er­ally be of ma­sonry con­struc­tion. The ad­vice for fix­ing is the same as for plas­tered or dry-lined ma­sonry walls. Sep­a­rat­ing walls in tim­ber-frame homes may have nor­mal tim­ber studs, but the plas­ter­board lin­ing is about 30mm thick.

Fail­ure to seal any holes in the plas­ter­board will re­duce the sound in­stal­la­tion of the wall, af­fect­ing not only your­self but your neigh­bour.

Heavy items should be fixed through the plas­ter­board to the ver­ti­cal tim­ber studs. Light items may be fixed with a plug in the plas­ter­board layer, but take care not to drill right through. Doors

Many doors are made with a thin fac­ing of com­pressed board or ply­wood on a skele­tal hon­ey­comb core within a tim­ber frame. Items such as coat hooks can be fixed to these doors with the same sort of cav­ity de­vices that are used for fix­ing to plas­ter­board.

But make sure that the door thick­ness will ac­com­mo­date the plug or tog­gle fit­ting when it is in­serted and fully tight­ened. Cur­tain tracks

In ma­sonry con­struc­tion, con­crete or steel lin­tels are used to sup­port the wall above win­dow open­ings. Bear­ing in mind the dif­fi­cul­ties of fix­ing to cer­tain lin­tels, some builders can help by pro­vid­ing a tim­ber bat­ten above the win­dow for fix­ing cur­tain tracks or blinds.

If a bat­ten is not pro­vided, ask your home builder what type of lin­tel has been used and what type of fix­ing is rec­om­mended.

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