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Protect your pipes as cold weather bites

Just one burst pipe in the loft can mean water gushing through your property ruining furnishings and belongings along the way and in same cases bringing ceilings down. For the homeowner this can mean months of disruption while their house is dried out and repaired.

Rob Townend, director of household claims at Aviva, advises homeowners to follow some simple tips as the cold weather continues to bite.

"Last winter we had some of the iciest temperatures in years and for some a relaxing Christmas break was ruined as they returned to a drenched home.

“But despite last year’s icy conditions many homeowners still forget that freezing and burst pipes can be a real problem – in some cases ruining entire floors of your home. The risk can be worse in traditional properties without modern heating systems or properly insulated pipes.

"And when homes are left empty, burst or leaking pipes often aren’t discovered for many days and so damage can get progressively worse.

“So be particularly aware if you are planning a week in the sun or on the slopes for Christmas or New Year. The problem starts when the thaw begins so make sure you have someone who can check on your home regularly and in particular when temperatures start to rise again, that way any leaks can be spotted early and stopped.

“And remember to leave your central heating on low so that warm air can circulate throughout the house.”

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