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Maintaining and Repairing Old Houses: A Guide to Conservation, Sustainability and Economy Hardcover – 18 Sep 2008


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Maintaining and Repairing Old Houses: A Guide to Conservation, Sustainability and Economy + Old House Handbook: A Practical Guide to Care and Repair + Period Property Manual: Care and repair of old houses (Haynes Manual)
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Product details

  • Hardcover: 192 pages
  • Publisher: The Crowood Press Ltd (18 Sep 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1847970354
  • ISBN-13: 978-1847970350
  • Product Dimensions: 19 x 2 x 24.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 186,292 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Review

"This well organised book is a welcome addition to the resources available for anyone thinking of living in an old house - and anyone thinking of 'doing up' a house should have to read this first, like learning the Highway Code before getting behind the wheel of a car." -- Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings: Cornerstone Magazine

"This book does exactly what its title proclaims, providing a professional and useful guide to the conservation, sustainability and economical management of old houses. It addresses the principal issues of the domestic dwelling including roofs and chimneys, external and internal walls, windows, doors and floors with commentary on grants, regulations, tax and insurance. Highly recommended, this book would serve the professional or informed builder undertaking maintenance and repair of an old house or historic buildings of domestic scale."
--Building Design bdonline.co.uk

About the Author

Bevis Claxton is a conservation architect with experience of repairing and adapting old buildings including historic properties open to the public, churches and old houses great and small, listed and unlisted. He is a regular contributor to magazines and co-founded the website www.oldhouse.info to help owners of old houses gain an understanding of the benefits of appropriate care, and an appreciation of those traditional, common-sense techniques that can be obscured by modern-day building practices.

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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

28 of 29 people found the following review helpful By E. Dean Butler on 23 May 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I purchased this book based on its Amazon description. When it arrived I reviewed the table of contents and paged through the book -- which resulted in great expectations. However, now that I have read the book, I am quite disappointed. The author clearly "knows his stuff" -- but he writes with a horribly old fashioned, unhelpful "ask a professional for help" when it comes down to how to solve the problems he describes. What is sorely lacking in this book is case studies and specifics as to exactly how to solve problems. For example, the author thoroughly reviewes the types of mold, rot and fungus one finds in old houses -- but only says "consult a professional" when it comes down to how to stop fungus and rot. Yet several forms of mold are easily and completely eliminated with a simple spray of household laundry bleach. Who needs the expense of a "professional"? There is a similar lack of helpful "how to" information with regard to insulation materials and methodologies, paint requirements, secondary glazing and many other areas -- most of which a good DYI person really can do on their own. Like so many so-called "professionals," this author seems more interested on turf and "trade secrets" protection than on being helpful.

However -- if you want a book that describes in detail virtually every old house problem you are likely to run into, and you are not much of a DYI'er, then you will find this book very worthwhile.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I own a 1920's house which has solid two-foot thick walls all around the exterior. The house is in need of some minor repairs like replacing crumbling plaster patches on the walls, insulating the attic space and solving the dampness problem at the gable end of the house where the exterior ground level is higher than the interior ground level; Then I wondered if I also needed insulation on the walls as well like modern houses. I had so many questions that I found difficult to get answers to where an old house is concerned. My house retains a lot of its original character which I want to keep but some people who have visited said I should gut the inside and re-do the whole thing again. It would probably be cheaper in the long run. I said no way - not having it! Then I came across this gem of a book during one of my internet searches for more information on how to repair and maintain old houses. After reading this book from cover to cover I now know how old houses need to breathe and how old houses differ from modern houses with regard to plaster, paint, insulation - particularly secondary glazing which allows one to keep the old single-glazed windows - an ingenious alternative to double glazing and a lot cheaper. I have learned that sometimes using new modern materials on old houses can be detrimental to the fabric of an old house and this is what I want to avoid at all costs and this is why I bought the book in the first place. I have learned so much and now understand my old house better. It has stood for the last 93 years or so and with the proper care and attention I hope it will keep standing for another few decades. I am using this book as my guide.Read more ›
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
One of the best books on restoration showing detail and simple how to guides. A must for anyone owning an older property and wanting to preserve it for future generations.

Clearly explains the impact of modern materials on older properties and how drastic changes can not only damage but de-value your property.

I have bought two of these now one which is well thumbed and the other for a friend buying an older property.
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By hayley on 21 Feb 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This was a good book to get when we bought a house that was 100 years old ,it gave some useful tips on how to carry out repairs and how to understand older houses.
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3 of 13 people found the following review helpful By triciat on 19 Dec 2009
Format: Hardcover
I actually purchased this book as a present and from just glancing through am very pleased with same.Delivery time was excellent as always.
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