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Avoid frozen misery - steps to avoid frozen and burst pipe problems this winter

As the Met Office predicts a colder than average winter, the ABI is urging householders to act now to avoid the misery of frozen and burst pipes this winter. Damage caused burst pipes can be expensive, disruptive and distressing, but can be easily reduced by taking a few simple steps now, before the winter really sets in.

The ABI recommends:

  • Keep your heating on at regular intervals and make sure to set it on a timer if you’re going away.
  • Make sure that water pipes and water tanks in the loft are insulated with good quality lagging.
  • Know where your stopcock that turns off the incoming water supply is, and make sure that it works.
  • Repair any dripping taps. This will help prevent water from freezing.

If your pipes freeze:

  • Turn water off at the main stopcock straight away and then wait for it to warm up or you can try and thaw the pipes with a hot water bottle.
  • If a pipe has burst, turn off the water at the stopcock. Switch off central heating and any other water heating installations. Open all taps to drain the system.
  • Contact your insurance company helpline for help and advice, including arranging for professional repairs to be carried out.

Laura Hughes, ABI’s Policy Adviser, General Insurance said:

“Every winter, damage caused by burst pipes is widespread and expensive. Prevention is better than cure and a few simple steps can reduce the risk of facing the trauma of frozen or burst pipes during the winter. Home insurance will pay for the often costly damage caused by burst pipes, but it cannot compensate for the misery and inconvenience that they bring.” 

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Notes for Editors

1. Enquiries to:

Malcolm Tarling                        020 7216 7410    Mobile: 07776 147667

Lauren Gow                               020 7216 7327    Mobile: 07889 641702

Sarah Cordey                             020 7216 7375    Mobile: 07860 189071

2. The Association of British Insurers is the leading trade association for insurers and providers of long term savings. Our 250 members include most household names and specialist providers who contribute £12bn in taxes and manage investments of £1.9 trillion.

3. An ISDN line is available for broadcast

4. More news and information from the ABI is available on our web site, www.abi.org.uk.

Last updated 15/11/2016