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    Cable clip

    A small pin with a plastic moulding used for fixing telephone wiring along skirting.

    Cable straps

    Plastic gripper strips for tying up cables. Also known as zip-ties.


    Lead glazing bars holding panes of glass in place.


    A beam or other structural part that is only supported on one side or projects beyond the support.

    Capillary joints

    Plumbing joints where a section of solder is pre-fitted to the pipe, ready to be heated.


    Uppermost nut on a compression joint, which tightens the whole joint.

    Capping stone

    The uppermost stone on a wall protecting the wall from damage and erosion, usually laid flush with the wall.

    Capstan head

    The turning handle of a rising-spindle tap.


    Traditional window which opens out from a hinge.


    A flexible compound used to seal cracks and fill holes on a variety of surfaces.

    Cavity tray

    A cavity tray is a waterproof barrier fitted into the cavity of a wall. It is designed to collect moisture that has penetrated the cavity and direct it back outside. Cavity trays should be fitted over any point where the cavity has been bridged above the DPC (damp proof course): for example above an airbrick.

    Cavity wall

    A wall comprised of two leafs or sections tied together with an air space in between to prevent the transfer of moisture and improve insulation.

    Cavity wall tie

    Fixing used to attach inner and outer leafs of a cavity wall.


    The initials "CE" do not stand for any specific words but are a declaration by the manufacturer that his product meets the requirements of the applicable European Directive(s).


    Adhesive used to bind ingredients to make concrete.

    Central muntin

    The central panel in a door into which panels are slotted.


    Bevelled timber.


    Channel excavated in a wall to house electric cables or pipes.

    Check valve

    Valve that allows water to flow in one direction.

    Chimney cowl

    A hood or covering fitted to the top of a chimney pot to solve downdraught problems and reduce the entry of rainwater.

    Circuit cable / supply cable

    The cable connected to the main circuit originating in the consumer unit.


    A water storage unit, such as used in a toilet. A supply cistern is sometimes used as a term for a water storage tank.


    Covering a surface with wood, plasterboard, stone etc. for protection or decoration.

    Clear lumber

    Lumber with no knots or holes.


    A strip of supporting wood, often fastened to a wall to support a shelf or to strengthen a door. Also, a horizontal section of wood fixing rafters together.


    A strip of wood fixed between windows to which the sill may be attached.

    Close-coupling plate

    A thin metal plate fitted onto the underside of the flush outlet of the cistern from a close-coupled toilet. This is the type of toilet where the cistern is seated on the back of the pan.

    Coaxial cable

    Used for connecting aerials to TV and radios and transferring high frequency signals.

    Cockspur handle

    A pivoted handle on a casement window.

    Combination boiler

    A boiler that heats the central heating system and domestic water supply.


    Plastic tubing protecting cables buried in the wall.

    Consumer unit

    This is where the main on/off switch for the building's electricity supply is located, along with the earthing terminal block for the all the building's circuits and individual fuses or miniature circuit breakers for each circuit.


    Stone or brick placed on top of walls as protection against weather damage, usually positioned so that it overhangs the wall.


    A conductor or wire, sheathed in colour-coded insulation to distinguish live and neutral cores.


    Decorative plaster or wood moulding in the joint between wall and ceiling.


    A layer of battens placed at right-angles on top of an existing layer of battens to allow for ventilation in roofs or walls.


    To recess the head of a screw so that it lies just beneath or flush with the surface.


    A row of blocks or bricks. See also damp-proof course.


    Decorative moulding between the top of the wall and ceiling.

    Cranked hinge

    A hinge that allows a door to open to 180 degrees, such as a parliament hinge.

    Cripple stud

    A new timber support placed either side of an opening cut into a timber stud wall.

    Cross lining

    Papering with lining paper in horizontal strips.


    The hardening process that concrete undergoes.


    The flow of electric charge around a circuit measured in amps.

    Cutting in

    Painting technique for producing a neat edge in the joint between walls and ceiling or skirting.