Advice for Homeowners:
- Check that loft insulation is thick and in good condition
- Fit your water tank with an insulation jacket or alternatively, wrap the top and sides with suitable insulation material
- To stop pipes freezing insulate all exposed water pipes (both internal and external). It is best to do this with foam based or specialist pipe insulation
- Alternatively to help keep water flowing open the attic hatch to allow heat circulate in danger areas, and wrap the most at-risk pipes with old duvets
- While running taps from now until the end of the cold snap is not recommended, you should make sure water flows through all taps regularly throughout the period and ensure heating comes on regularly – particularly in unoccupied homes
- Repair any leaks at taps or valves
- Know how to turn off the water supply (usually under the kitchen sink)
- Fit draught excluders to your doors and windows
- Make sure heating equipment is well-maintained, vented correctly and working properly
- Ensure chimneys are cleaned at least once a year
Burst water pipes
- Often the first and only sign that there is a problem is when the water supply suddenly stops
- Where possible you should also turn off the water supply from your water tank – this is normally located in your attic
- Finally, turn off all your water heating systems and then turn on your taps to drain the system – this will enable you to minimise any potential water damage from a burst pipe
- If pipes have burst you will need to turn off the water supply to your house and water tank.
- If electrics are exposed to water, turn off your electricity supply at the mains and make contact with your insurance company.
In the event of an emergency please refer to your policy booklet for emergency contact numbers.
Driving in the Snow
Before you drive
- Ensure you have plenty of tread depth and tyres are in good condition, with the correct pressure.
- Don’t lower the pressure to get more grip: This might lead to a little more traction when you pull off, but your braking and steering control will be impaired, and both of these functions are important when driving.
- Place the following in your car:
- shovel, torch with extra batteries, warm clothing, blanket, water & snacks, fully charged mobile phone, car phone charger, non-slip waterproof footwear
- Plan your route and, along with checking online for updates on any problems on routes, it’s best to consider the sort of roads you will encounter. Avoid mountainous or hill roads, and minor roads should be avoided if you can.
- Consider the conditions and heed warnings by avoiding unnecessary journeys.
Driving in the Snow
REMEMBER: Go SLOW…don’t PANIC….don’t BRAKE too hard
- If the snow is fresh, then you should find that it’s not too hard to drive on it.
Compact, Hard Snow
- This creates a slippery surface where ice usually starts to form. The basic advice is simply to drive more slowly, much more slowly, than usual and to look much further up the road in search of obstacles or reasons to stop, as your braking distance is going to be much longer.
- Don’t brake hard if you start to slide – wait until you feel the car correcting its line and then gently slow down, using engine braking as much as possible.
Tips if you get stuck in snow
- Do not floor the throttle
- Alternate between reverse and 1st gear to rock the car gently
- Bring a shovel in case you get really stuck
These tips are taken from guidelines circulated by the Office of Emergency Planning. For further information visit https://www.winterready.ie/en
For emergency support please contact your insurer, refer to your insurance disc or policy booklet if you are unsure who this is. Emergency contact numbers are listed below:
AIG: 1890 272727
Allianz: 01 613 3000
ARB: 1890 253 033
AXA: 1890 247 365
Aviva: 1800 448 888
Bump: 1800 812228
Catalpa Courier: 1800 806 797
Citynet: 0044 207 488 7950
FBD: 1800 323 888
Footprint: 01 2611200
Kennco: 1890 670 670
Liberty: 1800 70 60 80
MIS Breakdown: 028 9048 4484
Optis: 046 948 1667
Patrona: 1800 806 800
RSA: 01 832 8358
Sertus: 1800 417 270
The Underwriting Exchange: 0044 207 398 8100
Wrightway: 1800 200 022
Zurich: 1890 208 408