Escape of water is one of the most common causes of home insurance claims and can cause a huge inconvenience to tenants and home owners.
According to the Association of British Insurers, one in five home insurance claims are as a result of escape of water, with insurers paying out £483 million to help customers in the first nine months of 2017.
Water can travel long distances and go undetected for some time, meaning even minor escapes have the potential to cause major damage to a home and contents; with the average escape of water claim costing £2,638.
What are the top causes for leaks at home?
- Frozen pipes: Pipes can freeze and burst causing thawed water to release from the break
- Household appliance leaks – due to inadequate fittings: Incorrectly plumbed-in appliances such as washing machines and dishwashers could lead to significant escape of water
- Sinks, baths and drains: Bath and shower trays could leak if the silicone sealant around them starts to peel away or mould could start growing which could lead to decay and cause a leak. Drains can also get blocked and burst
- Radiator and boiler leaks: Boiler and radiator valves and joints should be checked. Valves and joints can leak if rusty, worn out or not closed properly
- Gutters: Backed up gutters can cause roof leaks and unnecessary damage to your roof
Top tips for noticing a water leak
A water leak may not always be easily noticeable, therefore it’s worth looking out for the following signs:
- A dramatic increase in water usage: Monitor your water bill closely – especially if you are on a meter. If water usage increases dramatically in any month this may need investigating as it could be a sign of a leak.
- Small damp patches in your home: If you notice small damp patches in your home, seek immediate professional advice as this could imply you have a leak in your home. Your buildings policy may provide cover for ‘Trace and Access’ which can help identify the cause of a leak in your home.
Having call out numbers readily available in the event of a leak will help minimise water damage. It is also really important that you know where your stopcock is and can turn it off easily in the event of a leak; the stopcock is usually found beneath the sink in the kitchen or in a hallway cupboard.
These actions can help protect your home minimise the amount of damage that can be caused from an escape of water.
For further advice, speak to your local insurance expert at A-Plan
Source: Zurich Insider