Avoiding Burst or Frozen Pipes

Burst pipes is one of the most common and most damaging incidents that can happen in cold weather.  To avoid burst pipes and other winter disasters in your home follow these tips:

  • Make sure you know where your stopcock is and check it is working correctly.  It is usually under the sink in your kitchen.
  • Remember that the pipes in a flat may supply water to your neighbours.

If your pipes burst:

  • The first thing to do is turn the water off at the stopcock.
  • Open all taps to drain your system.
  • Notify the neighbours who could experience the damage.

Avoid burst pipes and stay safe in winter:

  • Keep your home warm whenever possible, even when it is empty.  Keep the heating on overnight at a low temperature if you can.
  • If you have no heating, turn your water off at night, if possible.  This should minimise any damage if there is a thaw overnight.
  • Make sure there are no draughts from outside, especially near water pipes.
  • Keep windows closed in unheated parts of your home.
  • Make sure you know where and how to switch off your electricity and heating safely.
  • Make sure the batteries in your torch are working and have some emergency lighting handy in case of a power cut.
  • Make sure you have some warm shoes or boots with non-slip soles for going outside in the winter weather.
  • Keep a mixture of salt and sand handy to put on steps or paths in icy weather.

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