Burst pipes warning as North East households and businesses given simple advice to help avoid incidents in icy weather

With temperatures set to remain below freezing, businesses across the North East are being urged to protect their properties.

Friday, 12th February 2021, 3:55 pm

Northumbrian Water is advising bosses to ensure that their premises are prepared, or risk the hassle and cost of a burst pipe during the most expensive season of the year. The advice might seem obvious, but the company says not all businesses follow it; with disastrous effects.

According to the Association of British Insurers, a burst pipe costs an average of £8,800 to repair. There are also higher premiums, inconvenience and loss of business to consider. Businesses are asked to make sure their properties are protected, even if they are not in use due to Covid.

For example, if a property is going to be unoccupied or unused for a while, it’s a good idea to turn off the water at the stopcock and drain the system so there is no water left in the pipes. It is also advisable to leave heating on low during winter.

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Failing to follow simple advice to prevent burst pipes can cost businesses thousands of pounds. Picture from Pixabay.

Jim Howey, head of Water Networks North at Northumbrian Water, said: “Not all business owners realise this, but all pipework within your business boundary is your responsibility – which means it is worth protecting it to avoid unnecessary costs.

“There are many simple steps that businesses can take to minimise the risk of a burst pipe, including insulating with pipe lagging, fixing dripping taps and minimising draughts.

“We would also like to remind businesses to check their boiler has been serviced, to familiarise themselves with the location of the internal stopcock, and to remember to ensure that all fire systems are adequately protected from freezing.”

Northumbrian Water’s winter checklist includes: Check you have a plan for where your pipework is.

:: Check you know where your stopcock and any control valves are so leaks can be isolated, then check the stopcock and valves are working.

:: Check or add any pipe lagging.

:: Check any trace heating or thermostats are working.

:: Check your heating system is serviced and in good working order.

:: Isolate and drain down any unused water pipework in unheated or unused areas.

:: Isolate any outside taps and cover/insulate them and remove all outside hoses.

:: Regularly check your premises and repair any leaks.

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