When the weather gets worse, there are a few extra precautions you might want to take to protect your property. As well as the increased risk of burglary due to the darker nights and fire hazards posed by Christmas lights and decorations, the winter weather can cause damage to your home – especially the pipes.
When the temperature drops below freezing, there’s a much greater chance of a burst pipe. When water freezes inside a pipe, it expands and can cause the pipe to crack. If there is still water flowing through a frozen pipe, the pressure can also cause the pipe to burst.
Preventing a burst pipe
A little bit of preparation can be the difference between a peaceful winter and a long insurance claims process. You can’t guarantee that your property won’t suffer a burst pipe, but there are some steps you can take to significantly reduce your chances of having an unwanted leak to deal with.
The British weather is notoriously unpredictable so, whether cold weather is predicted or not, it’s always best to be prepared for winter. Make sure you know where your main stopcock is and check that it turns on and off without any problems. It’s also a good idea to make sure any pipes and tanks that could be prone to freezing are fully lagged. Check the lagging in all parts of the property if you can, especially in the basement or loft if you have one.
When the cold weather hits, leaving the heating on for at least an hour or two per day will help to keep the water pipes warm. If you’re going away, schedule the heating to come on at least once a day while you’re gone if there’s no-one to turn it on and off.
Claiming for a burst pipe
Turn off your water at the main stopcock if you notice a frozen pipe or leak. If a pipe has burst, turn off your central heating and open all taps to help drain the system.
If your property suffers a burst pipe, you should be able to claim for water damage on your home insurance policy. This will probably involve contacting your insurance company to let them know of the damage, receiving a visit from a Claims Adjuster and hopefully receiving a satisfactory settlement from your insurer.
Water damage is usually covered as part of a home insurance policy, but you’ll need to check your own to make sure. It is usually referred to as an ‘escape of water’ and covers everything from a leaking appliance to burst pipes caused by freezing weather.
Dealing with a burst water pipe can be a stressful experience but you don’t have to handle it alone. If you need to claim for water damage because of a burst pipe, Morgan Clark can help handle the entire case so you can get on with life as normal. Our experienced team of Loss Assessors have helped many homeowners receive larger settlements for the damage incurred on their properties while taking the stress away.
Get in touch to find out how we could help you today.