The Met Office has confirmed weather warnings for snow and ice hitting southern parts of England.

Freezing temperatures can play havoc with the pipes inside and outside your home. Water expands as it freezes, increasing the pressure in pipes, and causing them to buckle and split, particularly if the pipe thaws quickly as temperatures rise.

Prevention is key when it comes to taking care of your home this winter.

Frozen pipe prevention

During winter, the pipes in your home may be at risk of freezing and bursting and this can lead to damage and a cold house.

To prevent frozen pipes:

  • Insulate your loft: Use good quality lagging, especially around your pipes and water tanks so they don’t freeze.
  • Open the loft hatch occasionally. This will allow warm air to circulate around pipes in the loft.
  • Fit new washers to dripping taps:

Stop the chance of water freezing and blocking the pipe.

  • Don’t switch your heating off completely: Maintain a low temperature and use frost protection thermostats on heaters where possible.

If a pipe has frozen, but not burst, avoid damage by:

  • Removing carpet, furniture and electricals near the frozen pipe, to minimise damage if it bursts.
  • Opening the tap nearest to the part of the pipe that’s frozen. This allows water to flow easier once it has melted.
  • Thawing the ice in the frozen pipe with a water bottle, hot cloth or hairdryer – it’s important to keep this safely away from any water. Start at the end closest to the tap.

And finally… Look and listen for home leaks. One drip… it might not look like much, but it all adds up.