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Cold and Snow Safety

Protect yourself, your home and car in snow and ice

Winter in Ireland usually brings freezing temperatures, often snow. And, in recent times we’ve experienced two exceptionally harsh winters.

Snow and ice mean both treacherous conditions for driving and an increased potential for damage to your home. The below steps will help you be prepare for the worst that winter can bring.


Tips for safeguarding your home
  • If snow and ice are imminent, prepare paths and driveways with salt so ice cannot form.
  • Check brickwork, slates and tiles for cracks and repair if possible. This will prevent any accumulated water from freeing, expanding and causing further damage.
  • Make sure that your pipes are lagged to help prevent from freezing.
  • When possible, leave your heating on ‘constant’. This will also help prevent pipes from freezing.
  • If you have an attic space, open up the internal access to the attic to ensure the flow of heat throughout the house.
  • Check for frozen pipes and if you suspect that a pipe is frozen you should do the following:
  1. Turn your water supply off at the stopcock and turn all taps on.
  2. Make sure that your central heating is turned off.
  3. Heat the pipe gently using a hairdryer for example.
  4. If the pipe does not leak once it’s thawed, you can safely turn the water supply back on.
  5. If you find a leak, turn off your electrical supply and be careful not to make contact with any wet electrical fittings.
  6. Contact us here, we’re happy to help.
  • Check that gutters and drains are clear to avoid the risk of flooding when accumulated snow and ice melts.
  • If it’s safe to do so, clear snow from around your property
  • If there’s an accumulation of snow on your roof, make sure that you cordon off areas where snow is likely to fall.
  • Be prepared for loss of power with candles and torches. Your mobile phone is also a handy light source.


Safeguard you and your car
  • Pay attention to the weather forecasts and warnings. The best driving tip… If advised not to drive, don’t drive if you can avoid it.
  • If you have to make a journey in the snow, clear your car of as much snow as possible.
  • Make sure windows are defrosted and demisted to ensure you have clear visibility.
  • Remove snow from the roof of the car to avoid it falling onto your windscreen during your journey.
  • Ensure that your car radiator has sufficient anti-freeze; top-up if levels are low.
  • Keep your fuel tank well filled. This will help prevent ice forming in the tank and fuel lines.
  • Do not pour hot water onto your windscreen, this may cause the glass to crack.
  • Drive carefully and slow down. Pay attention to road conditions and allow around 8 seconds between your car and the car in front.
  • Do not make harsh or sudden manoeuvres. Avoid hard braking and stay in the highest gear possible.
  • If your car skids you should turn the steering wheel in the direction of the slide and decelerate gently. Do not brake harshly.
  • Be aware of areas at risk of black ice formation, such as sheltered areas and under trees.