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Plumbers beware – Push-fit pipes could cause flooding

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There are currently warnings being issued to plumbing contractors to take extra care when installing push-fit pipes over claims they have been causing flooding. The warnings come in the wake of several high value claims for water damage.

Over the past year, ECIC, a specialist insurer for the construction industry, has seen a marked increase in escape of water claims resulting from push-fit pipes that have burst open under pressure causing massive property damage, proving incredibly costly.

One case settled by ECIC involved a care home that was so badly damaged by flooding from burst push-fit pipes that the claim was over £500,000. Of course the value of claims varies from a few thousand in domestic properties to hundreds of thousands of pounds in commercial properties.

The speed and ease of use where push-fit fittings are concerned, may make them an attractive prospect to contractors when time is of the essence. There is no need to solder or use glue to make connections and they are easily removed for repositioning when needed.

Because these fittings are a lot quicker and easier, the installation and fitting is perhaps suffering. It is entirely possible to use push-fit fittings safely but the margin for error is much smaller and could lead to thousands of pounds worth of damage to a property as well as damage to your business and reputation.

“We have seen an upsurge in escape of water claims in recent years, and the increasing use of push-fit pipes has, without a doubt, contributed to this rise,” explained Ian Hollingworth, claims manager for ECIC. “While these pipes, when they are installed correctly, are incredibly fast to fit and cost effective, if the job is performed incorrectly, the fitting, as we have seen, will burst causing extensive water damage. By ensuring that anyone fitting push-fit pipes is trained appropriately, and that care is taken to do the job correctly, plumbing contractors will be able to avoid damage, both to the property in question, but also their reputation and bottom line.”

Taken from HVPMAG online


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