Winter homecare essentials

You might have noticed it’s autumn outside. The clocks going back might have given it away, or possibly all the leaves blowing down your driveway will have made you aware. Either way, it’s a good time to think about homecare before winter rears its frosty head. A little maintenance on garage doors could be handy right now, along with some of these other homecare suggestions.

Deal with leaves

Picking up leaves in autumn isn’t our idea of fun. It’s a thankless but essential task, left to rot and leaves become slippery on pathways on driveways. Take our advice. Go on leaf patrol armed with refuse bags, a brush and shovel. You could take the high-tech approach and use a leaf sucker/blower. Form a big pile of leaves, bag them up or toss them on a compost heap. It’ll certainly make the outside of your home more appealing.

Clear gutters

Leaves cause issues with guttering too. During the autumn they have a habit of falling into gutters and this can start a chain reaction. Once the guttering becomes too contaminated with debris it prevents wastewater from escaping. Prevent this by clearing gutters at the end of autumn and it’ll set you up nicely for the winter.

Check drains

Outside drains become chocked with garden debris too. Deal with this by lifting the cover plate and scoop out sludge and debris using a garden trowel. Pour a little bleach into the drain when you have finished removing fallen leaves, moss and grime. Replace the cover and your drains should be fine for the rest of the winter.

Examine roof slates or tiles

Without a watertight roof your home is at risk of moisture penetration over the winter. Missing tiles let rainwater flood into your property. Even a simple slipped tile causes all kinds of water ingress problems, if you haven’t checked your roof tiles this autumn yet, now’s a good time to do so.

Don’t forget to contact us at Camber if you have problems with garage doors over the winter.

Are garage door seals worth the money?

A well-insulated garage will remain cool in the summer and warm in the winter. Place a seal along the floor at the front of your garage and this should help to weatherproof the garage and protect it from rain.  

Is it necessary to run a strip along the width of the garage though?  

This blog explores the merits of garage door seals. If you haven’t used them yet this could make an interesting read.

What are garage door seals?

Door seals are water and draught excluders. They are sometimes used on the floors of garages, you can buy them to fit around the edges of doors and some customers install them to the tops of doors as a precautionary measure.

(Image courtesy of

Most seals are made from rubber materials. This is a durable compound which proves to be hard wearing in all types of weather conditions. It makes a good solution for weatherproofing the interior of a garage, particularly when it’s windy or when it rains.

In most cases a sturdy seal is all that’s required to prevent moisture penetrating the floor of the garage. They’re simple to fit and very effective at what they do.    

The way they work

Floor seals are fixed into position at the threshold of the garage. When the door closes it gently ‘kisses’ the edge of the seal and this forms an immediate barrier against the outside world.

Different heights and lengths of door strips are available to cater for a wealth of domestic and commercial structures. They come in kit form and popular heights include:

  • 15mm
  • 20mm
  • 25mm
  • 30mm
  • 40mm

It’s a good idea to check the gap distance at the bottom of the garage door before you order a weatherproof strip. This will indicate the height of the strip you require and ensure a watertight seal.

If you fit them properly and get the sizes right your strips will start working straight away and you should have a waterproof garage. 

What should you look for when you buy a garage door seal?

Obviously the height of the door seal is important. Fit a strip too low and water, dirt and debris will still be able to penetrate your garage.

Length is important too. Measure the width of your garage and find a strip that comfortably sits within the door frame.

Sizes vary. These are some of the most common widths…

  • 2.0 metres
  • 2.5 metres
  • 3.0 metres
  • 4.0 metres
  • 4.5 metres
  • 5.0 metres
  • 5.5 metres
  • 6.0 metres
  • 7.0 metres
  • 8.0 metres

Quality of materials is something else to consider when you invest in a door seal. Avoid anything that feels flimsy. The strip should feel rugged and robust. Remember, you’ll be driving over it in your car.  


Garage door strips are useful for a number of reasons. For starters they prevent rain water from penetrating through the bottom of your garage door. This is important, especially when wind is driving the rain directly at the door.

Keep a garage dry and this prevents damp, avoids tools rusting and stops items in storage becoming infested with mould.

They also prevent leaves, dirt and debris in general from penetrating your garage. In essence a seal serves two purposes. It acts as a barrier against flooding and seals the garage from unwanted debris as well.

Summary of benefits

  • Block rainwater
  • Prevent debris blowing under the door
  • Stop condensation
  • Keep out rodents
  • Improve insulation

So the big question is, are garage door seals worth the money?

This is our humble opinion at Camber Garage Doors…

You bet they are!

The Different Garage Door Styles

The typical garage door of a home covers as much as a third of the overall exterior. Choosing the right garage door can make the world of difference to the overall aesthetic appearance of any home.

There is a wealth of different garage door styles for consumers to choose from. Here is a brief overview of the range of garage door styles, consumers can choose from.

Traditional Garage Doors

Traditional garage doors are the most common types of doors found in homes. Typically manufactured from one solid piece of wood they can be built with tracks on either side that run to the ceiling to hold the whole section in place. Some doors open to the ceiling; others lift straight up and then slide back.

Carriage Style Garage Doors

Carriage doors are usually made from wood though they can be manufactured from a wealth of different materials. These doors are characterised by the small windows that are usually located on the top of these doors. Made from one solid piece of material, carriage garage doors are typically manufactured from one solid piece of material.

Raised Panel Garage Doors

As the name may suggest, raised panel garage doors feature a number of raised panels that fold to the ceiling when opened. They can be manufactured from a wealth of different materials, including wood, steel and aluminium, and can be manufactured in a range of different colours.

Flat Panel Garage Doors

Flat panel garage doors are made of wood. These doors are manufactured in smooth word and grain textures. These garage doors are considered to be very elegant.

Ribbed Panel Garage Doors

Ribbed panel garage doors feature several ribs in each panel. Such doors are generally found in commercial applications, however they can be used in your home. These doors can be manufactured in varying degrees of detail. Some doors can create a ‘cottage’ look.

These are just a few examples of the different types of garage doors that consumers can choose from. It’s always advisable for consumers to have a thorough understanding of the options that they have prior to choosing new garage doors.

5 steps to a fully insulated garage

A successfully insulated building will remain warm in the winter and cool in the summer. A properly insulated garage can even help to control the temperature in the rooms of your house. Garage insulation can also help to create a sound barrier between your garage and your living space as well as a barrier to prevent carbon monoxide from seeping through the walls into your home. We have compiled 5 steps to ensure a properly insulated garage is achieved in order to make your home more energy efficient.

1.       Determine a type of insulation

  • Loose-fill insulation is commonly used with lofts. It is typically blown into an open space until the space is filled.
  • Spray foam insulation works on the same principal. For small applications, a sprayer is used to place the foam which hardens over time; for larger applications, a pressure sprayer may be used.
  • Blanket insulation is available in a variety of widths and sizes to suit most walls and is a good method if you have not yet installed drywalls.

2.       Choose an R value

The R value measures the resistance of a type of insulation to heat flow; the higher the R value, the greater the ability to insulation. The R value typically depends on your local climate and need for insulation.

3.       Install the installation

  • For loose-fill or spray foam insulation, cut a small hole into the drywall between each set of studs. Using a blower or sprayer, fill the area with insulation.
  • For blanket insulation, push each roll of insulation between the studs. When the insulation is in place, staple it directly onto the studs.

4.       Cover the insulation with drywall

  • For loose-fill and spray foam insulations, repair the hole made in the drywall. This can be done easily with small pieces of dry wall and tape
  • For blanket insulation, place sheets of drywall over the studs; affix according to manufacturer instruction

5.       Add weather stripping to the garage door

Replace the weather stripping on the floor if it is dried or cracked. Cut away the old material and nail new pieces directly to the floor. For additional insulation, add a weather seal around the outside of your garage. Also ensure the seal around your garage door is tight and does not let any heat out.

Getting a garage organised – the facts you should know

Install a new set of garage doors from the team at Camber and what’s stopping you from reorganising the garage at the same time?

The doors look great, don’t let the side down with a shoddy interior, tidy up and make your garage practical and functional at the same time.

Here’s what to do…

Clear out clutter

Get rid of anything you haven’t used for over a year. Host a garage sale, sell goods online, donate them to charity or simply take the junk to a nearby recycling centre. Spend a day clearing out the clutter in your garage, bet there’s tons of trashy items you simply don’t use.

Categorise items 

Place all the items you want to keep in separate piles. Split the stash into four piles and keep gardening, DIY, motoring and leisure items together before you decide where you are going to put them.

Create zones within the garage

Have a clear plan of what is going where. Leave plenty of room for the car but consider where you can place all of the remaining belongings. This is the time to consider storage options, racks are good, boxes are useful and you could create your own wall panel with handy places to hang your tools.

Use all available space

Think you haven’t got the room for bikes, ladders and other larger objects? Why not support them from the roof? You could hang them from hooks that are fitted to the wall, it’ll free up floor space and make your garage feel less cluttered.  

Start as you mean to go on

Once you tidy the garage and find a place for everything make an agreement with the rest of the family, the rule is, use something and you have to put it back in the same place.  

It’s a little too easy to fall back into old habits when you have a tidy garage, stay in neat mode though and you’ll always have room to park the car.     

The Evolution of the Garage and Garage Doors

Garage doors have a richer history than you might first think. The humble garage can be traced back to homes in centuries past. Homeowners needed adequate space to store their carriages or buggy carts when they weren’t in use.  Built from two distinct pieces, garage doors would traditionally swing open, much as French doors do today.

However, innovation doesn’t stand still. The arrival of the automobile in saw an increased need for safe and secure storage. The traditional space needed for space buggies needed to be increased, and with that the garage as we know it today was born.

Given that structures have evolved to accommodate vehicles so too has their location on the building. Both style and materials used in the construction of the garage doors has evolved over the last few decades.

The traditional structure accommodates either a roll up or a flip door garage entrance. Manufactured from steel, wood or fibreglass the weight of the door can be rather substantial, though this obviously depends on whether the garage door is a single or double. Fibreglass is considered to be the most desirable material is it has qualities ensure that the garage door is both durable and requires little maintenance. Alternatively, those that choose wooden garage doors will have to dress the door with a fresh coat of paint every few years to prevent the wood from rotting. Those that opt for steel garage doors need to be aware of rotting and treat the doors accordingly.

Garage doors have changed as have garages themselves. One of the more visible changes is the position of the garage doors on the property. Garage doors can be either fixed to the detached property or as separate structures and have a number of different sizes to choose from. In the past homeowners would pull up to the garage, open the door then reverse their car into the structure. However, since garages are all too often directly attached to the property it’s paramount that homeowners choose doors that meet your purposes. Whether you choose electrical automation doors, or ones that with just a click of a button will allow you access to your garage the choice is entirely down to the consumer.

Over time doors have evolved exponentially. Since the days of the humble garage space that stored carriages to our present diverse range of functional and aesthetically pleasing garage doors it’s true to say that we’ve come a long way.

Dressing a driveway in simple steps

There’s not much point investing in new garage doors for a home in Alton, Farnham, Fleet or Haslemere if your driveway has seen better days. Even the most dilapidated driveways can be improved with a little tender loving care, spend a day over the weekend transforming the approach to your home and make your driveway work in harmony with your garage doors.

Here are some ideas to start you off…

Clean the driveway

Okay, the first job to tackle is a general clean of the driveway. Block paving starts to look a little grimy after a while, grease, oil stains, moss and garden debris coupled to the odd splashes of bird ‘do’ here and there really downgrade the look of a drive. The good news is a quick blast with a power washer will soon restore the paving back to its former glory, use a chemical detergent and it’ll really bring the brickwork back to life.  

Lay a fresh covering of gravel

Not everyone has a block paving driveway of course, some people have concrete or gravel approaches to the home. A quick way to transform the look of a drive is to cover old gravel or broken up concrete with a layer of fresh stone chippings. Have them delivered in bulk, shovel them out and brush them over old stones to create a clean and effective driveway, gravel hides a multitude of sins, and it’s also nice and crunchy underfoot.

Add lighting for effect

Line the edges of the driveway with a series of outdoor lights, it’ll create a warm and welcoming effect when you return to the property in the evening. Hang a light over your garage as well, pick something fashionable and it looks good, plus it improves security too.

Carefully position planters

Use potted planters to line the driveway, place them either side of your front door or next to your garage instead. Fill them with flowers or tall shrubs to create interesting features around the drive, left bare it could look a little forlorn. 

Tend to your borders 

If you have a borders either side of the driveway don’t neglect them, fill them with flowers and bring your drive to life with a sea of colours. Well-tendered borders show you take pride in your home and it’s a good way to ‘frame’ your drive. 

Trust us when we say you’ll be tons happier when your driveway looks better, it’ll make your garage doors look brilliant too.

Tips to give your home more kerb appeal

Houses are judged on kerb appeal, try to sell a house that lacks this vital factor and you’ll drive buyers away. Kerb appeal is important, whether you are selling the home or not, take pride in your house and it shows on the outside.  Here are our top tips for adding kerb appeal to your property.

  • Clean the windows – Dirty windows look horrible and peeling frames are just as bad. Clean your windows regularly, wipe down the frames, give them a lick of paint if they haven’t been touched for a while.
  • Paint your door – Create a good impression by painting your front door, and new hardware if your numbers, locks and letterbox look a little tarnished.
  • Fix the roof – Repair any slipping or missing roof tiles. Make your home watertight and improve the appearance at the same time.
  • Address the driveway – Cracked driveways are an eyesore. New paving looks great on a driveway, gravel is a cheaper option that works well too, resin driveways are new to the market and they look gorgeous as well. There are driveway solutions to suit all budgets, give yours a makeover and watch how it transforms the outside of your home.
  • Buy feature plants – Olive or bay trees look beautiful in large feature planters, especially if you place them either side of your front door. Small conifers and topiary shrub ‘balls’ work just as well, a few plants here and there are a nice touch outside the property.
  • Use special lighting – Light up the edges of your driveway with lighting, place lanterns either side of your front door, invest in feature lighting that gives your home a warm and welcoming appeal.
  • Fit a new garage door – We had to include this one! Replace a rotten garage door with a quality feature from Camber, we have beautiful bespoke doors to match your budget.

Getting the exterior of your home ready for the spring

We like to say goodbye to the winter as soon as possible at Camber and look forward to the beginning of spring. As the winter draws to a close and the first signs of spring start to make an appearance it’s a good time to spring clean the inside and outside of the home. These are some of the tasks you can perform outside the property.

  • Power wash the driveway: Blast away the dirt and grime that has accumulated over the winter using a mobile jet washer. Clear moss, algae and other stains from brick driveways and create a welcoming approach to the home. Power washers are easy to use and they clean large areas in short spaces of time.
  • Clean garage doors: Once you have finished power washing the driveway give your garage doors a clean. They’ll have attracted a fair amount of dirt over the winter so use the jet washer to blast them off or simply fill a bucket with water and a little soap and hand wash the doors instead. Check the condition of the doors once you have cleaned them. Look for any signs of wear and tear and treat accordingly.
  • Wash windows and frames: Clean the glazing at your property taking special care to wipe down the window frames afterwards. Create a sparkling effect and leave windows streak-free using a squeegee and a bucket of soapy water.
  • Clear gutters: Get your gutters cleaned and remove any leaves or other debris that might have fallen into them during the autumn and the winter. Prevent gutters from becoming blocked, they could spill waste water down the side of your property. 
  • Buy tubs of flowers: Give the outside of your house a little bit of colour and buy planters filled with bright, cheerful flowers. Pick your favourite blooms, water them regularly and they should last right through the spring and the summer. 

Faults and fixes for garage doors in Petworth

Our doors are designed to provide you with many years of happiness and we are sure you’ll be pleasantly surprised by the quality of the product if you order a set of garage doors from Camber. We understand if you bought doors from another company in the past though and wanted to highlight a few problems you might experience with overhead doors in the future.

  • Door closing then opening again: If your door starts to close when you press the remote but opens again when it’s nearly at the bottom this could be a problem with the sensors inside. Possibly they are misaligned or there is something obstructing their path, make sure they are lined up correctly and nothing is blocking the sensors. If the problem persists give us a call and we’ll fix the problem, or ring the company that fitted your doors.

  • Door refuses to close: If your door starts to open but decides to close again when the gap reaches a few inches check the condition of the springs. Possibly one might be broken and this is preventing the door from opening properly. Replace the spring and it should fix this fault, it’s not a bad idea to replace the opposite spring at the same time.

  • Door doesn’t open with the remote: Have you checked the batteries? This is the most likely cause. New batteries should cure the problem, if it doesn’t, try reprogramming the garage door operator, you should find instructions for this in the manual that came with the doors.  

  • Door has difficulty sealing: If your door closes but doesn’t seal very well at the bottom you could try adding a bit of insulation on the bottom. If this doesn’t work think about installing new seals, it’ll be worth it if you intend to use the doors for a few more years.