Thousands of offices and homes were left without water this week following the big
freeze because of burst pipes, frozen taps and boiler breakdowns as a result of the recent extreme winter conditions.
There are preventative measures that can be put in place to ensure that buildings and offices are future winter proof.
Preventative action is essential to ensure your home and offices will survive a cold weather spell.
As is so often the case, regular boiler servicing and pipe maintenance is left out of a company’s budget because of cost.
All to often I have seen what damage a burst pipe can do, whether it is in a hospital, school or a company, causing thousands of pounds worth of damage.
Great news for the commercial plumbing company who are called into do the repairs, but not so good for you who has to pay for the damage caused by flooding.
Preventative action means having a robust and regular maintenance schedule to make sure that your offices and buildings are protected against frozen wintry conditions.
Here are a six ways to make sure you are protected against burst pipes and boiler breakdowns: –
- Are your water pipes insulated especially if they are in exposed areas?
- Do you know where the stopcock or the main isolating valve is? It is essential to know where this is in case of an emergency. Everyone in the building should know its location and the isolation valve should be regularly checked to make sure it works. The waterboard will come and locate the valve but, it might be a long wait.
- When you leave the office building set the thermostat to an ambient temperature (at least five degrees) or, a frost thermostat can be fitted to prevent pipes from freezing. Make sure you check your insurance to ensure you’ve complied with any directives laid down by the insurance company.
- Insulate water tanks and lag pipes to ensure they are protected especially in unheated areas such as loft spaces or uninhabited areas such as disused offices.
- Fix taps that drip, a trickle is enough to result in a pipe freeze
- Make sure your boiler is serviced regularly to ensure optimum performance of your heating system
If a pipe freezes:-
- Turn off the water supply at the main incoming valve
- Check to see if the pipe has burst
- Call a commercial plumbing specialist who will be able to isolate the problem and advise what needs to be done.