Burst pipes a priority for Christmas travellers
by Gill Montia
Story link: Burst pipes a priority for Christmas travellers
AXA is urging homeowners to consider their plumbing, as the Christmas break approaches.
According to the insurer, around 35% of Britons will be away for a few days over the Christmas and winter holiday period, when burst pipes can be a bigger threat to belongings than burglary.
During December 2008 and January 2009, more people claimed for “escape of water” than for either fire or theft, with the average claim for water damage from a burst pipe at just over £15,000, comprising £4,200 for contents and £10,900 for buildings.
However, the firm’s research indicates that only 8% of homeowners give a though to the danger of a burst pipe while they are away, compared with 57% who are worried about being burgled and 24% fearful that their homes could be consumed by fire.
AXA’s head of home insurance, Nick Kidd, says: “Arriving home after a Christmas break to find your home devastated by a burst pipe can be very stressful and even if you have the insurance in place to cover the cost, the sentimental value of many things we keep in the home can never be compensated.”
The insurer therefore recommends: leave heating on a minimum of 12°C when away; checking the insulation on water pipes and the cold water tank; insulating the loft; leaving kitchen and bathroom cabinet doors open to allow warmer air to circulate pipes inside cupboards, and leaving the loft hatch open to let warm air circulate.