Tenant self-help

Whilst many repairs do require a professional to carry them out, we receive multiple requests per year to attend to issues that could safely be carried out by the tenant. Such requests often multiply exponentially during periods of extreme cold weather which places a large demand on the repairs service. Below are some self-help videos providing step-by-step instructions on how to resolve some frequently encountered issues.

­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­Copyright © B&Q Plc and Ideal Boilers

B&Q and Ideal have given North Tyneside Council permission to use DIY tutorial videos to provide advice and guidance for council tenants. In providing a link to these videos, North Tyneside Council is neither endorsing nor recommending B&Q or Ideal products or methods. North Tyneside Council do not accept liability for the accuracy or the contents of the information provided by B&Q or Ideal. It is provided for general information only and should not be interpreted as approval by North Tyneside Council for any information you may obtain from B&Q or Ideal.

Simple repairs of this nature should only be undertaken if you are fit and healthy to do so and have the necessary tools and safety equipment. If you are at all unsure about the contents of the videos or how to undertake any of these activities, you should seek professional help.  All repairs or other works are undertaken at your risk and North Tyneside Council accepts no responsibility for any damage or injury arising from or caused by such actions or repairs.

If you find these videos helpful or if you have any suggestions regarding the content of this page, we would welcome your feedback. Please take a minute to fill out our feedback form which can be found here.

Trip Switches

How to find and fix faults with trip switches:

Kitchen Drawers and Doors

How to realign your kitchen drawers and doors.

How to turn off the gas in your home

Find out how to turn off (isolate) the gas supply in your home if you can smell gas:

Replacing a plug and chain

Find out how to replace a plug and chain on a bath or hand basin:

Unblocking a waste pipe

Find out how to unblock a waste pipe on your sink, basin or bath:

Clearing a gully

Find out how to keep the drains and gullies at your home clear: 

How to bleed a radiator

If you notice your radiator(s) are not heating up correctly there may be air in the central heating system, this is usually an indication that the radiator(s) need ‘bleeding’. This is a simple job, to help you complete this with confidence we have attached the following video. Please note we advise you to turn the heating off and give the system time to cool down before bleeding the radiators to avoid any risk of scalding. After completing this task you may need to repressure your boiler, for help with this see the ‘how to top up your boiler pressure’ video further down this page.

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How to top up your boiler pressure

If you have a combination boiler in your property and it stops working, it may be due to the boiler pressure falling below the minimum level. The pressure can easily be checked via the gauge which is usually located on the front of the boiler, behind the front flap or sometimes underneath the boiler. The video below will show you how to top up the boiler pressure which should allow the boiler to function once more. Whilst your boiler make and/or model will most likely be different to the one shown, the basic principles will still apply. Please note that there is no need to remove the filling loop as demonstrated in the video.

If you are finding you are having to top up the boiler on multiple occasions, then there is likely to be a further issue to resolve and you should contact North Tyneside Council repairs to book an appointment for an engineer. 

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How to defrost a frozen boiler condensate pipe

If you have a combination boiler in your property and it stops working during a period of freezing temperatures, chances are the condensate pipe has become blocked due to a build-up of ice. This video will show how to resolve this issue. Whilst your boiler make and/or model will most likely be different to the one shown, the basic principles will still apply. If you are unable to safely access the condensate pipe, please do not attempt this and report the matter to North Tyneside Council repairs.

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How to fit a toilet seat

At times toilet seats can break or become damaged, it is your responsibility to supply and fit a new one. To help you with this we have attached a video showing a step by step guide on how replace your toilet seat with confidence.

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How to seal round a bath

Over time the silicone seal around your bath or sink can become old and no longer provide a water tight seal, water can seep down behind the sink/ bath causing damage. A new silicone seal might be needed, for help on how to do this click on the following link. If you are still experiencing problems please contact North Tyneside Council repairs.

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How to clean grout

The grout between the tiles in your kitchen and bathroom can become mouldy and discoloured, to help prevent this you should clean them regularly. If the grout between your tiles has become discoloured, please see the step by step guide below which will help you with this.

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How to replace a broken tile

At times, existing tiles fitted in your kitchen/bathroom can become cracked or chipped and may need replacing. Replacing the tile is easy enough and if you feel this is something you may be able to do yourself, please see the video below for a step by step guide. If you need further help or advice contact North Tyneside Council repairs.

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How to draught proof doors

Fitting draught excluders to the gaps around your doors will keep warm air in and cold air out - while helping to make your home warmer and cutting your fuel bills too. You'll find self-adhesive foam strips are an inexpensive draught excluder, easy to fix in place and ideal for using on your interior doors. Please watch the step-by-step video below showing how to draught-proof doors, with expert advice and top tips to help you complete the job with confidence.

If you are experiencing problems with your UPVC front door and/or windows please contact North Tyneside Council repairs.

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How to fill small holes in your walls

For help on how to fill small holes in your walls we have attached a handy step by step guide that you may find useful.

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How to patch a plaster wall

If you have minor plaster patching that is required in your home, you may be able to carry out the job yourself. To help you with this we have attached a handy step by step guide.

For any large scale plastering jobs please contact North Tyneside Council repairs.

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How to prepare your walls and ceilings for decoration

If you have just moved in or you are getting ready to decorate, the video below gives you some handy hints and tips that you might find useful.

There is also a handy calculator available to help you identify how much paint you will need to carry out your decorating.

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How to change a plug and fuse

Plugs and/or a plug fuse can at times become damaged and need replacing. Fitting a new plug is an easy task to complete, follow the step by step guide below.

Please note: not all plugs can be replaced.

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Dampness or condensation?

Find out more about dampness and condensation

 

General DIY advice

B&Q have produced a number of helpful videos offering guidance and advice on a number of DIY activities such as:

  • How to put up a curtain pole
  • How to hang a picture
  • How to fit a roller blind
  • How to put up a bathroom mirror
  • New home starter kit
  • How to paint a wall 
  • How to paint a ceiling
  • How to paint a door

These videos can be found here.

Please note, you must seek permission from North Tyneside Council before making any major alterations to your property. Your local Neighbourhood Housing Officer will be able to advise you if you require permission to carry out the planned works. Further information is also available on the attached form.

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