Want to fix common problems in your home yourself this winter and beyond? Let Army&You guide you through the basics…


HAVE you ever called out CarillionAmey (CA) for a job you could probably have done yourself such as bleed a radiator or tighten some screws? A bit like the NHS, CA repairs and maintenance is a free service however, as with a GP, there are things that you might be able do before you call them.

The response maintenance team get very busy in the winter months – so it’s worth trying to sort some basic issues yourself, if you can. It’s also a good learning process for when you eventually move into your own house and might help free up the contractors to do jobs which they are really needed for.

Obviously AFF isn’t suggesting that you try to replace valves in the boiler, but the following are some simple suggestions:

Radiators not heating up at the top

Try bleeding them with a radiator key (available from most DIY stores)

Blocked toilet

Try washing up liquid! Squirt a load into the bowl with a bit of hot water; leave for an hour and then pour hot water into the bowl from a reasonable height and it should all slip away!

Electricity off

Is it only your property? Check if your neighbours have power. Check the mains switch hasn’t tripped and try to reset

Smoke detector beeping periodically

Try changing the battery

Constant sound of running water from the toilet?

You need to isolate the water supply to the toilet by using the isolation valve on the supply pipe or for older toilets, the stop tap. Once the water is isolated, a plumber will be able to fix the problem with the overflow

Combi boiler not working? Error code showing?

Have you tried re-setting the boiler? If an error code is showing, have you consulted the manual? If you have done all of this and the problem is still there, call the helpdesk

CA has lots of tips on their website and there are many self-help suggestions on YouTube.

If you have tried to resolve things and it doesn’t work or if it is an emergency, call CA on 0800 707 6000. There’s more info on troubleshooting in the CA booklet at www.carillionamey.co.uk/service-family-accommodation

Make sure you give the helpdesk the most accurate information to ensure they send the correct tradesman with the correct parts.

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