General Information

The information and videos below are used as guides only. The exact appliances/systems will vary depending on the property.

Please report any issues that you are unable to resolve yourself using the Repair Request below.

If there is more than one repair required in the property, make sure that you list these using one Repair Request, not multiple. Try and give as much detail as possible, so we can arrange for the most suitable contractor to attend and investigate.

For example, don’t report “light bulb needs to be replaced”, please specify which bulb that you are referring to and where it is located.

“A spotlight needs to be replaced in the downstairs hallway.” This means that we are able to action this quickly and efficiently, without any confusion.

Tips and Advice

Light Bulbs

It is a tenants responsibility to change light bulbs throughout the property, as stated in the Tenancy Agreement. Tenants can find more information on how to change light bulbs on page 26 in the Moving in Guide, which has been sent to all tenants via email.

If the light bulb is too high to reach or is a complicated fitting, please complete a Repair Request specifying which bulb(s) need to be changed and why you are unable to change this, so we can arrange for maintenance to attend.

Condensation & Mould

Mould growth is one of the most common Repair Requests that Drake & Co receive. This is often preventable by ensuring that the property is heated and ventilated adequately.

Please ensure that you have checked the following before completing a Repair Request:

  • Is the heating on a reasonable temperature for enough time throughout the day?
  • Are the windows being opened in the property, to allow air to circulate?
  • Are you using extractor fans in bathrooms and/or kitchens when using appliances?
  • If there is mould growth behind a piece of furniture e.g. wardrobe or bed, is this pressed directly against the wall? This stops the air flow and the difference in temperature causes mould to produce.
  • Could the mould growth/wet patch be caused by a leak? Check to see if the gutters are blocked, or, if there is a leak from the roof or bathroom above.

There are many tips regarding preventing condensation and mould on page 23 in the Moving in Guide. Tenants must ensure that they have referred to this, before contacting Drake & Co. Otherwise, you and/or your housemates may be responsible to pay for a call out fee, which is something that we wish to avoid.

Click the link below to watch a video which may help explain why condensation and mould occurs, as well as ways to prevent this. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uJwM_07npqw

Burglar Alarms

The majority of Drake & Co’s properties have burglar alarms installed. It is imperative that these are used if the property is ever empty. If you are the last person to leave the property, it is your responsibility to set this on your way out. Otherwise, you will invalidate the Landlord’s Buildings Insurance and/or any Contents Insurance Policies you or your housemates may have purchased.

Most burglar alarms require a four digit code to set, which you will have been informed of when collecting your keys at the beginning of the tenancy. If you have forgotten this, please email the office so we can remind you.

  • Make sure all windows and internal and external doors are closed/locked before setting the alarm.
  • Input the code using the panel (usually located in the downstairs hallway), which should begin beeping, indicating it is counting down before setting.
  • Lock the door and wait for the beeping to stop. Once the beeping has stopped, this means that the burglar alarm has set.
  • The first person to enter the property will need to input the same code to disable the alarm.

If the alarm is not disabled in time, it will emit a loud noise (for a maximum of fifteen minutes ) and the light at front of the property will flash. You will need to enter the code and click reset, or the “x” button in order to reset this.

The external alarm siren will continue to flash at the front of the property until this has been reset. You will also be unable to set the burglar alarm until the alarm has been reset, leaving the property and its contents vulnerable.

For more information on burglar alarms please refer to page 13 in the Moving in Guide.

Vacuum Cleaners

The most common type of hoovers supplied within our properties are: Yellow Karcher, Silver P and/or Henry Hoovers.

If you find that the hoover is not working, this can be due to a blockage in the hose/pipe or, the cylinder has not been emptied.

Both the Yellow Karcher and Silver P’s have a little grey clip which holds the filter to the motor. If this has become dislodged or lost, the vacuum cleaner will be unable to function until this has been replaced.

Please ensure that you and your housemates (if applicable) have checked the above, before reporting this. Otherwise, if maintenance attend and find this is easily fixable, tenants will responsible to pay a call out fee.

If the hoover is cleaned and maintained on a regular basis, tenants will be less likely to experience issues with this throughout the tenancy. More information on hoovers can be found on page 21 in the Moving in Guide.

Washing Machines

Tenants must ensure that they are regularly checking the filter is clear when using the washing machine. If the filter becomes blocked by debris such as: coins, wrappers, bobbles etc, this causes a blockage which stops the appliance from functioning correctly. Remember to check the pockets of items of clothing before running a cycle.

If you find that the washing machine is leaking, this usually means that the filter is blocked. Most washing machine filters are located at the bottom of the appliance. If you are unsure where this is, search the make and model of the machine online and you will be able to find the PDF instructions to help you.

Click the link below to see an example of how to clean a washing machine filter.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e9YtFBi_wnc

More links and information regarding maintaining washing machines can be found on page 19 in the Moving in Guide.

Please note, if our Whitegoods engineer informs us that the problem reported is due to improper maintenance, tenants will be responsible to pay for this repair.

Dryers

Tenants can often accidentally overload dryers which can cause the drum to dislodge. Please refrain from drying too many clothes at once otherwise, if this causes damage tenants will be responsible to pay for this repair.

Some properties have a vented dryer which means that the water drained from wet clothes is released outside. Tenants must check the lint filter is cleaned regularly (in-between every load) otherwise, this is a fire hazard.

Other properties will have a condenser dryer installed. Tenants are required to manually empty the water tank, as this is where the water is collected during each cycle. The dryer will have a light which displays when this needs to be emptied.

Both condenser and vented dryers have filters which must be checked and cleaned regularly, otherwise this may cause the machine to breakdown. The lint filter must be cleaned in-between each load, otherwise this is a fire hazard.

Click the link below to see an example video showing how to clean a filter on a dryer. There is more information on page 20 in the Moving in Guide.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ne_SR-QlvbA

Please note, if our Whitegoods engineer informs us that the problem has occurred due to improper maintenance, tenants will be responsible to pay for this repair.

Fridge Freezers

Most fridges and/or freezers are controlled using a thermostat dial that is labelled from 1-5. Please set this to 3 as it will chill your food rather than freezing it. If this isn’t cold enough, you can adjust it. However, be aware if you set it on to 5, your food and drinks may freeze whilst in the fridge.

Why is my fridge/freezer leaking?

If you find that your fridge/freezer is leaving a pool of water on the floor, this is a sign there is a fault somewhere. Please see some common causes of this below:

  • The fridge/freezer is overfull. If the appliance has been filled to the brim with food/drink and the door may be unable to close properly. Both doors must be closed flush against the seals to ensure that the temperature can regulate, otherwise, this will cause the freezer to defrost and leak on to the floor.
  • The freezer is over frozen. If the freezer door has been left open for a period of time, or, it has been overfilled, this can cause the ice to build up and push open the door. Please chip away any ice carefully, defrost the appliance (using the instructions below) and make sure that the doors close properly.
  • Items are blocking the drain hole. The drain hole is usually located at the back of the fridge. This allows any liquid produced through condensation to drain correctly. If this becomes blocked, the water will build up and eventually leak.

How do you defrost a fridge freezer?

You may find that your freezer has a build up of ice which is preventing the door from closing properly. Or, your baskets/shelves are difficult to insert or remove from the appliance. It is essential that you do not pull on these if they are frozen, otherwise they will break which you will be responsible to replace. Please be aware, a replacement basket can cost between £25-£150! Follow the steps below to defrost your appliance:

  1. Empty the fridge and freezer of all items.
  2. Switch the appliance off at the wall. 
  3. Open both the fridge and freezer doors and make sure they stay open whilst the appliance is defrosting. You may need to use something to prop the doors open as some models have hinges which self close. 
  4. Place towels on the floor to catch excess water to prevent any damage to the floor. 
  5. Leave the appliance off for at least 24 hours so it can defrost completely. 
  6. Mop up any water, close the doors and switch the appliance back on (as long as all ice has melted). 

You may wish to take the opportunity to clean the inside and outside of the fridge once it has defrosted, to keep it fresh.

*Please note, If the appliance is not “frost free” it needs to be defrosted every 3-4 months. This removes all of the ice so the air can flow between each compartment and regulate the temperature correctly. 

If the Whitegoods engineer visits and finds that improper maintenance caused the problem, tenants will be charged for the cost of the repair.

Dishwashers

If there is a dishwasher installed in the property, this requires the same maintenance that a washing machine and dryer needs in order to continue working efficiently.

If you find that your dishwasher is not working correctly, please check that the salt and/or rinse aid levels and keep these topped up at all times. Your dishwasher will perform poorly without these, as both have specific uses.

All dishwashers have a filter which needs to be cleaned, otherwise, if a build up of food occurs this will become blocked and stop the appliance from working. Click the link below to see an example of how to clean a dishwasher filter. There is more information on dishwasher maintenance on page 19 in the Moving in Guide.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GUZPNlYCMqc

Please note, if our Whitegoods engineer informs us that the problem has occurred due to improper maintenance, tenants will be responsible to pay for this repair.

Hot water and Heating

There are two different types of heating in Drake & Co’s properties: electric or gas central heating.

If the property has electric only, there will be storage heaters installed throughout the property. Each storage heater will have its own timer for you to program.

You must ensure that the timer installed is used throughout the duration of the tenancy. If you can’t find the manual for this in the property, search the make and model of the boiler as they will be available online. 

Do not leave the boiler on “constant/on” throughout the duration of the tenancy. 

There is a detailed breakdown regarding plumbing and heating on pages 24 and 25 in the Moving in Guide. This includes tips and information on electric and gas central heating, conventional and combi boilers, as well as how to set a manual and digital timer.

Some properties have a programmer installed to control the hot water, heating, thermostat and timer. This may be installed next to the boiler, in the kitchen, lounge and/or hallway. Programmers are usually battery powered, therefore, they need to be checked regularly to ensure that they have power. If you are unsure how to change the batteries, search the make and model online e.g. Honeywell, Salus etc. This is usually displayed on the front of the controller, or inside the flap which you can open to change the batteries. 

Tenants must refer to the Moving in Guide before contacting our office for assistance, to make sure all relevant checks have been completed. If you do not have heating and/or hot water, this must be reported to us as soon as possible, so we can arrange for maintenance to attend.

If maintenance attend and find the lack of hot water and/or heating is due to the settings e.g. the timer has been used incorrectly, the boiler has been switched off etc, tenants will be responsible to pay for a call out fee.

Keys

If you lose your keys, please contact the office for a replacement set. You will be responsible to cover the cost of the replacement keys.

If you are locked out and our office is closed, you can contact our emergency contractors for assistance. Both numbers are listed on our voicemail, in the Moving in Guide, as well as The Useful Contact Details which have been emailed to all tenants. Tenants will be required to pay for a call out charge, as contractors are self-employed.

You can attend our office during the next working day to collect the master set of keys to let yourself back in again, free of charge. If you borrow our master keys, these must be returned the same day, otherwise you will be charged for a complete lock change throughout the property.

More information regarding keys and security can be found on page 10 and 11 in The Moving in Guide.

Broadband

Most of the properties which opt for The Bills Inclusive Package or an Internet Agreement, have BT Business Broadband. If you are unsure which broadband provider you have, please email info@drakes.co.uk or info@billspaidltd.co.uk.

I can’t connect to the internet, what should I do?

1.Turn your router off and then on again! This may sound simple but it can help if your Hub is experiencing a glitch or has overheated.

2. Restart your equipment. If switching your Hub off didn’t seem to help, try resetting it. The reset button is located on the back of the router and you will need to use something small like a pen nib or pin to press and hold it for at least 30 seconds. Once the light turns green it has detected a signal from the exchange. The router should reboot and display a blue light showing that you are connected to the internet.

3. Check filter(s) and wiring. The easiest way to check this, is following the instructions/videos on how to set up the Hub using the links below. If you’re using an extension cable, remove this to see if it is causing the problem.

www.bt.com/content/dam/bt/help/user-guides/BT-Home-Hub-5-Self-Install-Guide.pdf

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mXS9zLcpW5Y

4. Check you are using the master socket. In some properties, there are multiple phone sockets fitted in places like the hallway, bedrooms or communal areas. The router must be plugged into the master socket, if another socket is being used the broadband will not work as this isn’t being powered by BT.

5. Try a wired connection. If you are connecting to the broadband using Wi-Fi, connect an ethernet cable to the Hub and your device to see if this works. If this solves the problem you may need to check the wireless settings on the Hub. 

If you are still experiencing problems with your broadband, please complete the Repair Request and provide the following information:

  • What the problem is
  • How long you have been experiencing this
  • Which router you have (Hub 5/Smart Hub 6)
  • The colour the hub displays

You may be asked to run more tests before a member of staff contacts BT and requests a line test is completed. Please note, if an engineer is required to visit, there are charges which tenants can be responsible for. More information on this can be found in the Moving in Guide on pages 7-9

Repair Request

Repair Request Form