The Association of British Insurers estimates that a burst pipe can release enough water to fill 48 bathtubs. Imagine that amount of water flooding through the ceiling of a flat and then think about the damage caused as a result. Sadly, that scenario isn’t an unusual one. Between 2014 and 2016, the total cost of ‘escape of water’ claims rose by 24%. And during the first nine months of 2017, claims like this cost insurers £483 million.
The ABI reckons claims are increasing for a number of reasons. Everyone wants a high spec kitchen with integrated plumbed-in appliances and there are now more bathrooms in new properties. Use of push-fit pipes by the plumbing industry is increasing; and in some cases, pipes are
Residents frequently fall out over water damage and insurance claims, which on average are around £25,000 for a burst pipe. Add to this the fact that 1 in 5 UK homeowners has no contents insurance and property managers inevitably find themselves involved in disputes. Many block insurers are now introducing additional excesses for water damage. So leaks add up to a big problem for everyone.
Last month, leak detection specialist Aqualeak produced a new technical guide that explains the way leak detection systems work and the components required. It includes easy-to-understand technical illustrations showing how systems are installed.
Another company, LeakSafe also has a list of frequently asked questions on its website which are a good starting point for anyone wondering if these systems are worth the investment.
And the really good news for flat owners – apart from preventing water damage of course – is that leak detection systems can have a positive impact on block insurance premiums.