Let’s be honest, here in the UK we don’t exactly need to batten down the hatches when winter arrives. We’re unlikely to be buried under 3 foot of snow, experience being cut off from civilisation or need to dig out the snow chains for our automobiles – clearly the Americans have taken over the internet when it comes to preparing for winter and quite rightly so, since they will experience ‘more’ winter. Nevertheless, in the UK there are still things we can do to prepare our homes for winter, which in our case is likely to involve a lot of rain, strong winds and a great deal of complaining about the weather.
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7 Top Tips for preparing your home or winter
Clear your gutters and drain pipes
This is important since water unable to escape along its usual route due to debris and clogged gutters, can spill back towards your home causing damage to your roof.
Check your central heating
It’s important to have your heating system serviced every year. The ideal time to do this is in the summer when your heating engineer isn’t too busy. Nevertheless, if that ship has sailed there’s still time to get it inspected before the really cold weather kicks in. It’s also a good idea to bleed your radiators to release any trapped air. You could also consider our Home Emergency Breakdown Cover, which covers you in the event of your heating breaking down.
Drain outside pipes
Burst pipes are any homeowner’s nightmare, but what many overlook is outside water systems. Good preparation for winter is to drain any outside hose pipes and if you have an underground sprinkler system, arrange for the pipes to be blown out.
Think about your chimney
If your property has a real fire remember to get the chimney inspected and/or swept. This is especially important for thatched properties, since heat conducted via chimneys is the greatest cause of UK thatched fires.
We all know we lose most of our body heat through our heads and the same is true of our homes. Roof insulation is the equivalent of putting a woolly hat on your home and can save you considerable money in energy costs in the long term.
Inspect your trees
OK, so trees and branches are unlikely to come crashing down due to the weight of all the snow, but the UK is prone to some very strong winds and severe storms over the winter. It’s a good idea to check any trees close to your property or energy cables for overhanging branches which could come down and cause damage in a storm.
Check your home insurance policy
Many of the above could result in a high value home insurance claim, from burst pipes to leaky roofs, through to chimney fires and storm damage. Now is a good time of year to check that your home has the level of cover you require this winter. Be sure to check the small print and read the Terms and Conditions and if you are still unsure, any one of our helpful Account Managers will be happy to talk with you.
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High value home insurance and peace of mind
Highworth Insurance specialise in high value home insurance for high value homes. We also offer specialist insurance for thatched properties, non-standard builds and homes at risk of flooding or subsidence. You can call and speak with any one of our knowledgeable Account Managers about your specific requirements and they will be able to give you honest and straightforward advice as to the best policy for your property. Call us on: 01202 937430 to discuss.