Depending on how comprehensive your policy is, will depend on whether you are covered.
The most common cause of burst pipes is frozen water in the pipes expanding and causing them to burst. There are several measures you can take to prevent this happening.
Lagging (insulating) your loft, water pipes and cold water storage tank can reduce the risk of freezing as well as in very cold weather leaving your loft hatch open to allow warm air to circulate. If you are going away over the winter period, you should leave your central heating on a minimum of 15C (59F) for at least a couple of house each day. For longer periods of absence, it could be worth considering draining the system down completely.
If the worst does happen, here are a few tips of what you can do to minimise the damage/disruption:
1) Switch of the water at the mains by using the stopcock. If there is still a steady stream of water, flush the toilet several times and turn on the cold water taps to get the water out of the system. If the water is leaking near electrical sockets, don’t forget to turn the electricity off at the mains.
2) Contact your home insurance company. You may have emergency cover included in your policy, which means you could get someone out to you very quickly.
3)Once you’ve stopped the water, your next job is to get a professional plumber out to make any immediate repairs. You’ll also need a fully qualified electrician if any sockets have been affected. Don’t be tempted to use any appliances that have been affected by water as this could be dangerous.
4) If you’re planning on making a claim for the damage, you’ll need to take photos for evidence and gather quotes for the work and replacement items. You’ll need to provide these to the insurance company, who will then decide if they are happy for you to go ahead with the work or if they need to send out a loss adjuster to assess the damage and the cost of the repairs.
5) Unfortunately sorting out your home after a burst pipe can take some time, especially if your home has been saturated. Drying out can take between 4-8 weeks and then you may need to strip off plaster and pull up floors. Once the rooms are dry you can then begin to decorate and get back to normal. Try not to throw away damaged items immediately after as you may need to use these to validate your claim.
Check your policy to make sure that you are covered for burst pipes as not all policies will cover you. Also try and take on board some of the tips on how to avoid burst pipes, it can cause massive disruption to you and your family.
Please note the content of this blog is for guidance purposes only and does not constitute for professional advice. Contact us today at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 01473 216950.