Protect your home this winter

John Brady

Head of Commercial, John Lewis Insurance

How a few simple steps can help you protect your home

Autumn is the time to get your house ready for the colder months, as it's a good idea to winter-proof your home so that you don't need to deal with problems if and when freezing temperatures and snow do strike. Prevention is better than cure when it comes to things like burst pipes and drafty corners, so if half check that your home's ready for a cold winter.

Cold weather and heavy snowfall on the scale that the UK has seen over the last couple of years can cause problems for householders. Follow these simple tips to prevent them:

Protect from outside
Clear your guttering and drains and check for loose roof tiles, damaged bricks or cracks. Frost and heavy rainfall could cause any flaws to deteriorate, so make sure your house is in good condition before winter does its worst.

Find out more about dealing with the aftermath of storm damage (opens in a new window)

Prevent burst pipes
A burst pipe, which can be caused by water freezing and expanding, can be a massive headache. Although most home insurance policies will cover you for this, it's better to prevent it from happening.

Make sure your pipes and water tanks are well insulated. Use your central heating every day; even if you're away for a few days, leave the timer on and turn the thermostat down – remember to do this if you're going on holiday over Christmas and New Year.

Find out more about dealing with burst pipes (opens in a new window)

Have your boiler serviced
Make sure your boiler is working efficiently before winter sets in. It will cost you a lot more in emergency call-out charges if it breaks down, and of course being stuck with no hot water or heating in the winter is not what you want to happen.

Check your insulation
With energy costs rising, escaping heat will lead to hefty gas or electric bill come spring. So, check windows and doors for drafts and hang lined, winter-weight curtains. If you haven't got it already, loft insulation really is a worthwhile investment and not that costly.

Deter burglars
Dark nights give burglars more opportunities to strike, so check to make sure you don't make it easy for them. Lock away ladders and tools, anything that might help burglars gain entry. Check your locks and alarm system, and if you have security lights, set them to come on as it gets dark.

Find out more about what to do if you're burgled (opens in a new window)

How home insurance can help
A good home insurance policy will cover you for a wide range of domestic disasters that might affect the building itself or your contents. As winter sets in, it's reassuring to know that your home is insured against loss or damage caused by weather conditions such as flooding and storms.

John Lewis Home Insurance offers Home Emergency Cover. Up to £1,500 of Home Emergency Cover is included as standard on our Premier Cover. If you take out our Plus Cover you can choose to add Home Emergency Cover up to £1,000 and up to £500 if you take out our Essential Cover.

This provides a 24-hour emergency helpline to offer advice and assistance if something does go wrong. And to really put your mind at rest, if your house becomes uninhabitable - for example if it's flooded - we'll find you overnight accommodation while repairs are carried out.

Find out more about John Lewis Insurance.


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John Lewis Insurance is a trading name of John Lewis plc. Registered office: 171 Victoria Street, London SW1E 5NN. Registered in England (No. 233462). John Lewis plc is an appointed representative of Royal & Sun Alliance Insurance plc. John Lewis Home Insurance is underwritten by Royal & Sun Alliance Insurance plc (No. 93792). Registered in England and Wales at St. Mark's Court, Chart Way, Horsham, West Sussex, RH12 1XL. Authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority (Financial Services Register No. 202323). Calls may be recorded and monitored.