Two Step Pipe Check this coming Winter!

With the festive season fast approaching and preparations underway for Christmas, NI Water is asking all customers to remember the most important preparation of all, protecting your home against the winter weather.

Following on from the successful, ‘Don’t Wait. Insulate’ campaign of 2011, NI Water is calling on customers in the Tyrone area to follow a ‘two step pipe check’ which involves checking if pipes are insulated and if they are, ensure the insulation is adequate and still provides protection.

Sean Mc Aleese, Head of Networks Water at NI Water explained:

“Last year was a mild winter, so the urgency to ensure property is protected may slip to the bottom of the ‘to do’ list. However, the threat of a cold winter and burst or frozen pipes is very real and cannot be ignored. Simply check your pipes are protected and if not, take steps to have them well insulated for the coming winter.

“Preparing for the winter cannot be the responsibility of just one party or organisation, we need customers to take the necessary steps to ensure their properties are protected. Simple measures such as lagging pipes, knowing where your stop valve is and having the number of a plumber to hand can all make a huge difference.” 
In January 2011 a single burst pipe in a vacant business property lost over 30 million litres of water. The population of Tyrone is approximately 55,000. 30 million litres of water could have provided Tyrone with approximately enough water for 6 days. The water lost in this one leak was also enough to:

Supply a family of 4 for 137 years

Fill 15 million kettles

Make 120 million cups of tea

You could have 375,000 baths

You could have 850,000 showers

Flush a toilet nearly 3,000,000 times

NI Water has produced a handy stop valve tag to encourage customers to locate their valve in the event of a burst pipe. Customers can obtain a free tag by phoning our Waterline number on 08457 440088, emailing or contacting us through Facebook.

We also have a Customer Care Register which is designed to meet the needs of those requiring extra help or support from the organisation. Joining is simple, customers can phone the Waterline number or obtain further information by visiting

NI Water’s top tips for avoiding frozen pipes include:

1.Insulate water tanks and pipes in unheated areas like lofts, garages and outbuildings;

2.Fix dripping taps – a gentle trickle of water can freeze and completely block

the pipe;

3.Keep your boiler well serviced to ensure your house is heated;

4.If you are away from home during the winter period, open the trap door into

the roof space to allow some of the warm air to circulate;

5. If you are away from home you could leave a key with someone who can

check the house regularly

6. Know where your stop valve is in the case of an emergency - it is normally

situated under the kitchen sink;

7. DO NOT run your tap to avoid a frozen pipe; a running tap can waste up to

3,000 gallons of water per day;

8. Write down the contact details of a registered plumber in case a

pipe does burst.