Running in your new extension
Your new extension needs to be run-in gently for the first few months.This is because bricks, blocks, timber, plaster and other materials have all absorbed water during construction and is therefore in the fabric of the building. There is a great deal of moisture around when you first take possession of the extension, you may not feel it and it will certainly not do you any harm.
As the extension is lived in and heated, it has to dry out. As it dries out the plaster will shrink causing small cracks and the timber will shrink causing small cracks or gaps. These are not sructurally important and they can be cured in the normal process of redecoration. We will have taken steps during the course of construction to minimise shrinkage but initial shrinkage is inevitable and therefore cannot be considered as a defect. It would be in your own interest to follow the advice given here.Try to maintain a reasonably even temperature. Use the heating system sparingly at first so that the building warms up gradually. Do not blast the extension with heat in an effort to speed up the drying process.Encourage ventilation by leaving windows and internal doors, including cupboard doors, open a few inches whenever you reasonably can. Failure to do so may result in condensation.
Kitchen and bathroom doors should be kept shut when water vapour is being produced to avoid it spreading throughout the house, at such times use mechanical ventilation or open windows.Your new sanitary ware will be sealed with silicone sealant to prevent the spread of water.
Although providing a degree of flexibility these seals can often be effected by shrinkage and movement in the adjoining structure, especially during the running in period, leading to small gaps appearing and allowing water ingress.
It is important to keep regular checks on sealants, particularly around shower trays, baths and kitchen sinks, and re-seal as necessary should any gaps become apparent.
Any form of water ingress can be detrimental, initially to decorations and then to the structure. Be aware of potential causes and act quickly if you have cause to suspect a leak.