With climate change and the environment topping the news agenda, households wanting to do their bit can do so by carrying out one simple task – lagging water pipes and outdoor taps.

As colder winter weather approaches, people looking for ways to be more energy efficient can cut down on the amount to heat water by insulating hot water pipes and protecting cold water pipes and taps from freezing and bursting.

This home improvement job need not be a costly operation as South East Water is giving pipe lagging away free to its customers on its website along with outdoor tap protectors. Industry approved lagging can also be bought from DIY stores.

The company, which serves 2.2 million customers across parts of Kent, Sussex, Surrey, Hampshire and Berkshire, says pipes burst when exposed to extreme cold such as in attics and outside buildings. Garden taps also need protecting against the cold.

Steve Andrews, Head of Central Operations, said: “A very well-insulated pipework system will help cut down on running costs and save on maintenance.

“Burst pipes are a very unpleasant and inconvenient problem and when they occur inside the home or in the boundary of a property they are usually the responsibility of the householder to repair.”

For the winter kit, additional advice and a video on how to protect water pipes go to southeastwater.co.uk/winter The name of a qualified plumber can be found at watersafe.org.uk or by calling call 0333 207 9030

Top winter tips:

  • Insulate pipes, cisterns and tanks. Look for the Water Regulations Advisory Scheme (WRAS) approved insulation or get it free from South East Water
  • Repair dripping taps
  • Inspect loft insulation
  • Make sure the internal stop tap works
  • Check on any elderly neighbours to make sure they are winter ready.
  • When away leave heating low or drain down systems

The company’s Priority Services Register is available for customers with medical conditions, restricted mobility, additional needs, sight and hearing issues who may need some extra support during a water supply emergency. One of the benefits is the delivery of bottled water during a supply issue.

To sign-up for the Priority Services Register contact the Customer Care team on Freephone 0800 952 4000 or go to southeastwater.co.uk/priority

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