NOVEMBER: FROZEN PIPES

ARE YOU PREPARED?

Understanding the ins and outs of your home insurance policy really makes a difference when dealing with frozen pipes and the disaster that follows. When temperatures plummet in the deep winter, pipes can crack from the cold and settling foundations can shift entire plumbing lines. These busted and cracked lines that once carried water now leak and pour water into your home.

When this happens, your first question will probably be, “Does my home insurance cover frozen pipes?” As always, the answer varies depending on your homeowner policy, and insurance adjusters make the final decision on what is covered and what is not. The main thing is to make sure you take immediate action to dry everything thoroughly, otherwise mold may develop. Keep in mind, homeowners must disclose water losses when they sell the house. A future buyer will want assurance that the damage was taken care of professionally.

Ideally, one would want to prevent frozen pipes from ever happening at all. One of the most common causes of frozen pipes is turning the thermostat too low when leaving a residence for a long time. Our rule of thumb is to never turn a thermostat below 55 degrees, as the money you save on heating costs won’t compare to the damage and headache of
dealing with frozen pipes.

PREVENTION TIPS:

  • Replace worn or cracked hoses on washing machine and dishwasher.
  • Inspect water lines for damage and proper insulation.
  • Perform an energy audit on your home to detect heat loss.
  • Know where your water main turn off valve is located.