Avoiding Frozen Pipes
  • Insulate water tanks and pipes in unheated areas like lofts, roof spaces, garages and outbuildings. This is also applicable to non domestic premises and holiday homes likely to be unoccupied and unheated for prolonged periods of time.
  • Insulation is essential in helping to prevent water in pipes from freezing. It is also important to ensure there are no gaps in the insulation at bends, valves or fittings.
  • Lagging material for pipes can be purchased in DIY/Plumbing stores. It should be noted that even with lagging, extreme weather conditions can result in water in pipes freezing. Without lagging however the potential for this to happen is greatly increased.
  • Fix dripping taps – a small trickle of water can freeze and completely block the pipe.
  • Find your internal stop tap/valve. It is usually but not always located under your kitchen sink and normally closes by turning clockwise. You may want to test it is working.
  • Service your boiler regularly.
  • Make sure doors and windows from unheated parts of your property are kept closed and minimise any draughts from outside.
  • If you have tanks or pipes in the roof space, allow some warm air to circulate by opening the trap door (this should be a temporary measure ONLY, as it will cause condensation - tanks and pipes should be insulated).
  • Leave the heating on low when you are away. Leave a key with a neighbour, friend or family member who can check the house regularly.
  • Write down the contact details of a qualified plumber.
  • If a property is not in use or occupied for a prolonged period of time it is advisable to turn the water supply off at the stop tap and even consider draining down the system to lessen the possibility of burst pipes going undetected causing property damage and the waste of water.