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The Twistfix Blog

Twistfix Blog

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Potholes: The Worst Roads in the UK

Wherever they are found, from roads and footpaths to driveways, patios and car parks, potholes are dangerous and unsightly. They are a particular problem for motorists, a fact which has recently been highlighted by local authorities after the results of Freedom of Information disclosures were revealed last week.

Tarmac Pothole RepairThe results of the UK-wide survey have revealed the worst roads in Britain in terms of potholes, based on the number of complaints received. With a massive 545 complaints, Mellor Brook By-pass in Lancashire is by far the worst in the UK, though none of the roads in the top ten have less than 150 complaints. Other notable pothole-filled roads include the A345 in Wiltshire, Attercliffe Road in Sheffield and Main Road in Cheshire.

Edmund King is the President of the AA. When shown the results of the survey, he said. "...our potholed roads are a national disgrace. We are rescuing record numbers of drivers whose vehicles are damaged by potholes. Insurance claims for damage caused by potholes is soaring. The lack of ­investment on local roads means highway authorities are doing little more than papering over cracks, with drivers picking up the pieces.”

Tarmac Pothole Repair from Twistfix is one of the best ways to restore order from the chaos created by potholes.  A versatile cold-lay asphalt of highway-quality, the product delivers immediate repairs to any pothole-damaged surface whatever the current weather conditions.

Find out more details about this amazing product on our website.

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The Firestone EPDM Rubber Roofing System

The summer months are the perfect time for carrying out roofing projects. Work can proceed rapidly and, when finished, the roof will be ready to protect the property for the coming cold, wet weather in the following seasons. Twistfix are proud to number among the carefully-chosen distributors of the Firestone EPDM Rubber Roofing System, a hugely-successful product that has been on the market for more than four decades.

Since its launch is the USA more than 40 years ago, more than a billion square metres of Firestone EPDM has been sold. This impressive figure makes Firestone EPDM the most popular type of roofing membrane in the world, testament to its superlative levels of quality, safety and efficiency.

Unsur­pri­singly, Firestone EPDM has received a number of awards and accolades in its time. Greenpeace, the environmental organisation, conducted an in-depth study of the material and shared the results in a publication entitled 'Building the Future'; the study concluded that EPDM is an 'envi­ron­men­tally-friendly choice of roofing membrane'. In a published list of roofing membranes, the Association of Community Technical Aid Centres (ACTAC) named Firestone EPDM as 'the best-buy roofing membrane'.

EPDM, which stands for Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer, is a hugely innovative material, designed to exhibit robust resistance to water, extreme temperatures, ozone and UV radiation. It delivers powerful insulation and can be installed quickly and easily, creating a seamless finish that provides total protection.

Firestone EPDM rubber roofing is available as separate pieces from Twistfix but, for a more cost-effective choice, we recommend our comprehensive EPDM kit. As well as a piece of membrane in your chosen size, the kit contains all of the fixings, adhesives and trims required to achieve a professional, lasting result.

Please enjoy browsing through your EPDM options on pur website, and get in touch with our technical team for advice and information.

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New Reduced Prices on Waterproofing Membrane from Twistfix

As one of the largest suppliers of damp proofing and tanking products in the UK, Twistfix boast superior purchasing power.

This enables us to command a highly-competitive market price, the savings from which we are delighted to pass on to our customers, allowing them to source great value, high-quality products in a cost-effective manner.

We have recently secured a deal with the only UK manufacturer of cavity-drain waterproofing membranes and, as a result, we are happy to announce that a number of British made membrane products are now available at a new and permanently reduced price. These include:

Water­pro­ofing Membrane – Baseline 20

Baseline Mesh Membrane Kit

Waterproof Membrane – Baseline 8 Kit

Baseline 20 Waterproofing Membrane

This high-performance waterproofing membrane is especially suited to civil engineering and construction projects, where it can be used to successfully waterproof basement floors and combat seepage. Designed with robustness in mind, Baseline 20 has an especially-enhanced drainage capacity and, once installed, provides an impermeable waterproof surface upon which can be directly laid floors and screeds.

Type-C compliant, Baseline 20 is approved for use in Grade 3 or 4 dry environments, is available both a 40 m2 & 20 m2 roll and is ideal for manual handling.

Baseline Mesh Membrane Kit

Designed for tanking basement walls, the Baseline mesh membrane kit contains a tough, long-lasting HDPE mesh membrane, with a surface that allows the direct application of adhesive dabs or wall plaster.

The membrane has a load-bearing capacity of 150 kilo-newtons per square metre and the kit contains all of the necessary ancillaries such as fixing plugs, butyl rubber tape and waterproof seals.

Baseline 8 Membrane and Kit

Baseline 8 is a cavity drain membrane which allows the attachment of timber-frame studs. This permits unencumbered services, including electrical wiring, which can run safely between the membrane and a stud wall, preventing compromised effec­tiveness.

The kit includes brick plugs with ready-mounted seals and either waterproofing tape or butyl rubber rope; these seal the system and isolate masonry from internal finishing.

Get all the details on the tanking membrane product pages and contact our team if you need advice or information.

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Save Water, Save your Garden and Save Money!

Sales of bottled water in the UK have rocketed over the past couple of weeks, which has been attributed to the sunshine and pleasantly-warm weather this month. But don't forget that your garden gets just as thirsty and will be needing more water than usual as summer approaches!

Before summer really starts to kick in, it's predicted that we'll have to endure plenty of rain first. So this is your last call to get your hands on a Rainwater Harvesting System; localised droughts and hosepipe bans occur in this country every single year and if it happens where YOU live, then your garden is at risk of dehydration.

As well as the obvious environmental benefits, it will save you money too. Anyone who has to pay the water rates will know just how precious a commodity fresh water actually is. During an average year, a typical roof in the UK will be covered with about 80,000 litres of usable water; that's enough to fill more than 1,300 baths!

Harvested rainwater is not only good for watering parched gardens. It can also be used for washing cars, windows, greenhouse, patio, cycles; you name it. You could also use it to top up your pond or even to flush toilets.

The Twistfix Rainwater Harvesting System is simple to use, easy to install, guaranteed to be of 100% quality and compe­titively-priced.­ 

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Weed All About It: Twistfix VS The Green Invaders!

If you've been enjoying the sunshine recently, then you're not the only one! The annual weed invasion has begun and it's time to get tough on these green garden invaders with the Twistfix professional collection of weed control products.

Roundup ProActive

This is our basic, standard option, designed to combat growth of hardy weeds. Ivy is a particular problem at this time of year; the creeping weed grows extremely quickly and can damage structures and trees. Roundup is used all over the country by local councils to control ivy, grasses and other weeds on paths, roadsides and other hard ground.

Roundup Provantage 480

For controlling annual and perennial weeds, Roundup Provantage 480 is a more advanced glyphosate weedkiller. It works by disabling the enzyme system of green plants; these enzymes are not present in humans, animals, fish or other living things and so it is perfectly safe and non-toxic to anything but green-leaved weeds.

Ground-Invasive Weed Control Treatment

Weeds that come into this category are the notorious Japanese knotweed and hogweed, both extremely invasive species. Hogweed is known for causing burns and allergic reactions while Japanese knotweed is so damaging and pervasive that it is against the law to leave it untreated on your property. Roundup Pro Bio in an economical 3-pack kit is tough enough for the job.

Knotweed Injection Tool

Hollow-cane invasive plants like Japanese knotweed need special treatment and successfully solving the problem requires the use of a herbicide injection gun. Carefully calibrated to dispense an exact dosage of glyphosate deep into the stem portion of the weed, the Twistfix Stem Injector Tool is a crucial weapon in your armoury.

Check out these products and more in the 'Weed Control' section of the Twistfix website.

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A World Beneath your Feet: Basement Conversion

Fine, rare and expensive wines. Garden Tools. An out-of-control DVD collection. Exotic reptiles. What do all these things have in common? They are among the many hundreds of everyday, weird, normal and wacky things stored or housed in basement conversions! All over the world, people are using underground spaces as an ideal way to allow their collections to grow further; who knows what is just a few metres under your feet right now? Come on a journey with us as we slip through the cracks and into a hidden world...

Membrane Fixing Plugs

Hearing from our many happy customers what they are using their new basement conversion for is always a welcome event here at Twistfix; there is a world of difference between the industrial, heavy-duty nature of the waterproofing products, which we deal with daily, and the warm, human side of the pleasure these products bring when properly installed by reliable contractors. We wondered just what else people were keeping below-stairs and so we did a little bit of research, which led us discover some record breaking collections kept in cellar conversions! And here they are, our top five…

  1. Biggest Collection of Model Ambulances: Austrians Susanne Ottendorfer and Siegfried Weinert have collected 10,648 toy vehicles between them. Many of the charmingly-rendered and beautifully-detailed models have vintage credentials and some date back as far as the 1880s
  2. Biggest Collection of X-Men Memorabilia: a whopping 15,400 items bags this record for Eric Jaskolka from Iowa, USA. Wonder if he has any superpowers…?
  3. Biggest Collection of Gift Cards: Aaron & David Miller from USA and Canada have 3,215 unique gift cards in their New York basement conversion. Everyday’s a birthday in the Big Apple!
  4. Biggest Collection of Converse Shoes: American Joshua Mueller owns 1,546 unique pairs of Converse shoes, enough to wear a different pair every day for four years
  5. Biggest Collection of Iron Maiden Memorabilia: dedicated heavy-metal fan Rasmus Stavnsborg has a themed bar in his basement conversion, complete with a record-breaking 4,168 individual items

Whatever it is you’re collecting in your basement, you’re going to want to keep it protected from moisture. This means starting as you mean to go on - by accepting nothing less than pure profes­si­onalism right down the line, from the knowledge, experience and reputation of advisory bodies, like the Basement Waterproofing Association, to the contractor you employ and the waterproofing materials that they use.

For all your basement waterproofing needs, Twistfix has the answer. Browse our range now and contact our experts for advice and information.

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Spring Into Action: Fill Those Potholes!

The winter just gone (for good, we hope!) has had its usual effect on the nation's roads, not to mention on its driveways, patios and footpaths! You will certainly have noticed this effect if you're a driver: the dreaded potholes are bigger than ever thanks to the freeze/thaw cycle. There's only one way to stop them getting worse...

It's quite simple: potholes need filling in to stop them from being a safety risk and from damaging property. Twistfix has the answer in the form of Ultra Crete Permanent Pothole Repair, a truly professional solution that is used all over the UK by householders, private contractors, industries, local authorities and councils alike. As you'd expect, the material makes it easy to effect an efficient and lasting repair.

Potholes really cannot be avoided, particularly in areas of heavy traffic. Vibrations create small hairline fractures, the edges of which soon work loose to allow water inside. In the best case scenario, this water will start to erode the material beneath; things progress much quicker as a result of the dreaded freeze/thaw cycle. Either way the result is the same: the cracks get wider and let more water in, progressively widening cracks. Further vibration adds more to the mix, damaging the surface material and resulting in the ubiquitous pothole.

Potholes are especially dangerous to pedestrians, particularly children, the elderly and those with impaired mobility. They also represent a danger to cars, which can easily become damaged as loose material is dislodged to strike the surfaces and the delicate underneath of the vehicle. Every time a vehicle drives over (and through) a pothole, that pothole becomes ever wider and thus more dangerous.

Permanent Pothole Repair from Twistfix comprises a cold-lay asphalt, supplied in a resealable, recyclable 25kg tub. It can be used in any weather conditions and provides that all-important repair to a wide variety of surfaces, including driveways, car parks, courtyards, sports courts and more, as well as those already mentioned earlier. Once in place, the repair formula helps to stop a recurrence of the damage.

For just £46.50 fully inclusive of VAT, you can get your hands on a 25kg tub of Ultra Crete Permanent Pothole Repair. For a complete package at a special price, check out our Asphalt Repair Kit too.

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ThermalDry: designed to Combat Condensation

Condensation is one of the leading causes of damp. Condensed water can seep into masonry walls, causing all sorts of damage and providing the perfect environment for mould growth which is at best unsightly and can be damaging to health. One of the best ways to prevent the problem is with the use of ThermalDry, an anti-condensation coating available at the most competitive price from Twistfix.

ThermalDry Anti-Condensation Coating is a specialised product comprising an acrylic, water-based emulsion paint. This paint incorporates small, hollow glass beads which act in much the same way as a Thermos flask, blocking thermal energy via a process of reflection.

As the thermal energy is reflected away from the walls, they are protected from the condensation that can cause so many issues. Condensation forms most easily on surfaces with a low temperature and ThermalDry addresses the problem by reducing the dew point (the temperature at which condensation occurs) via increased wall temperature.

ThermalDry is a dual-coat system; the first coat is applied horizontally and, after a drying period of between two and four hours, a second coat is applied vertically. The product can be used successfully at temperatures between five and thirty degrees centigrade.

It is essential to gently stir the paint before application, dispersing the micro-beads evenly throughout the formula. As the micro-beads are made from glass, they are fragile and so the use of mechanical stirring devices should be avoided.

ThermalDry can be successfully applied over the top of any existing paint or plaster and is ideal for use in bathrooms, kitchens and utility rooms. You can apply the formula directly to brick and concrete and so it is also perfect for application on external facing walls. ThermalDry is available in 2.5 or 5-litre containers and coverage extends up to five square metres per litre per coat.

When fully dry, the coating is totally waterproof and feels warm to the touch. It will prevent any mould formation, reduce the risk of condensation and ensure cost-savings in the form of reduced fuel usage, which also improves the green credentials of your property.

ThermalDry is just one of the many solutions Twistfix offer to address the problems caused by condensation and damp. Browse our range today and get in touch with our expert team for technical advice and support.

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Tower of Strength: Grade 2 Listed Building Restored

A Twistfix-registered contractor recently completed a delicate refurbishment project to a Grade 2 listed building using many Twistfix products. The work was commissioned by The Victorian Society and carried out in close contact with conservation officers to ensure listed-building protocol was strictly adhered to.

The Victorian Society is a charity that champions Victorian (also Edwardian) buildings in England and Wales. Staffed by trained Conservation Advisers, the charity helps local planning authorities to make decisions about listed-building adaptation and refur­bis­hment, remaining within the law and retaining the original character of the buildings. They also spearhead various campaigns and set up events aimed at engaging the public, helping to increase the likelihood of conservation.

The contractor hired to restore the Grade 2 listed building was SRS Midlands. After carrying out careful surveys and liaising closely with members of The Victorian Society, a remedial plan was proposed. The building required much crack stitching and structural pinning to restore it to its former glory and Twistfix products are ideal for such projects.

All of the materials used, including a large number of extra-long helical tie pins, had to be agreed in advance with the local conservation officers. A particular area of interest was the tower of the building, which required strengthening through extensive pinning to the turret and helical bar banding in the form of retrofit bed-joint reinforcement to the brickwork panels below the terracotta brickwork. Conservation officers were extremely pleased with the result and, apart from fresh lime pointing, said that they would "never have known the contractors had even been there"!

Find out more about becoming a Twistfix-registered contractor and get in touch with our team for expert technical support.

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Woodworm Season: How to Beat the Beetles

As the UK emerges from a long and harsh winter, something else is starting to emerge too: woodworm beetles! Twistfix are ready to help combat the problem with our range of professional woodworm treatment products. professional builders should be ready to deal with the inevitable upcoming contracts by having plenty of woodworm treatment in stock; if you are a property owner, then use our Find-A-Contractor service to make sure that your property is treated using Twistfix products.

There are several types of insects that live and breed within timber (the most common being the aptly-named common furniture beetle), these insects and their worm-like larvae are collectively referred to simply as woodworm. Furniture is not the only type of timber at risk and the insects readily infest rafters, floorboards and skirting boards too.

Several signs can indicate a woodworm infestation, including:

  • Holes in timber. Wood-boring insect larvae burrow deep inside timber and can remain therein for up to three years, munching their way through the internal timber structure. They then pupate, emerging as adult beetles during the breeding season (April/­September). The adult beetle then exits the timber to start the breeding cycle once more, leaving behind a small hole as it does so.
  • Frass. This is a fine powder resembling sawdust and is created when the adult beetle eats its way out of infested timber. The presence of this powder close to exit holes shows that a wood-boring infestation is active.
  • Weak, damaged timber. During its extended stay within timber, the larvae are continually eating through the wood. The tunnels it leaves in its wake weaken timber, often causing it to become brittle and its surface to flake away when touched.
  • Visual confirmation. It is possible that you will see live beetles as they emerge from the timber though it is more common to find dead beetles in the infested area.

Our collection of woodworm treatments is centered on a micro-emulsion insecticide, which is supplied as a concentrate. It quickly, safely and efficiently eradicates infestations of all wood-boring insects and also includes a wood preserver to help prevent re-infestation. As with any insecticide, it is important to use proper safety equipment and wear protective clothing during application. The product is registered for use only by professional builders and, due to health and safety restrictions, can only be supplied to locations on UK mainland.

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