Winter proof your home
Follow our tips to avoid any issues with your internal pipework during freezing weather conditions
Prepare your home in advance
Frozen pipes can crack or burst when thawing, resulting in expensive repairs and a disrupted water supply. You can help avoid these issues by getting your home ready before the temperature drops. View our tips to find out how. If you have frozen or burst pipes, visit our dedicated support page to find out what to do?
Insulate water tanks and pipes
All exposed pipes, including attic pipes should be adequately insulated. Insulate or wrap a towel around outside taps to help prevent them from freezing over.
Service your boiler
Your boiler needs to be serviced regularly by an accredited plumber to run efficiently and to keep your home or business warm. If not, leaks could freeze and cause a breakdown and costly repairs.
Fix external dripping taps
We recommend you always fix any dripping taps but pay particular attention to external dripping taps in winter as water from them can freeze on the ground and can cause people to slip and injure themselves.
Minimise all draughts
Ensure any gaps under doors and around windows are covered or sealed as cold air coming from outside can cause pipes to freeze inside your home.
Once the temperature drops
When the temperature is below zero, it’s particularly important to take extra steps to prevent water in your pipes freezing. If you have no water or low water pressure in the winter, your pipes may already be frozen.
Circulate warm air to unheated areas
Opening doors to unheated areas of your home occasionally to allow warm air to circulate can prevent pipes and tanks from freezing in the cold weather.
Running your taps will not prevent pipes from freezing
This is especially important as this can cause frozen drains and puts undue pressure on supplies across the network.
Leaving your property unattended?
If you are leaving your property unattended for an extended period of time, you may wish to shut off the water supply to the property from the external stopcock. You must ensure that any water-dependent appliances or facilities are also shut-off.
If you have a meter installed by Irish Water, a frost plug has been inserted in the meter boundary box to prevent the meter and stop-cock from freezing.
If no meter is installed by Irish Water and you are concerned that the stopcock might freeze, open the stopcock chamber and remove any water. Fill the chamber with non-absorbent material to provide insulation. Do not use an absorbent material as it too will freeze when wet.
These tips are offered as a guide only. For more information visit www.winterready.ie by the office of Emergency Planning on behalf of the Government Task Force on Emergency Planning.