Search the Halton Housing Website

Can’t find what you’re 
looking for?

Filter your search results by visiting our help and support page.

Help & Support
My Tenancy
Menu
Warm home discount

Keep warm, keep well – cold weather advice

Protecting yourself and your home from cold weather is vital during the winter months.  

During our busy periods we will work hard to get to everyone as quickly as possible but it may be necessary to prioritise those where there is a disability/vulnerability identifed or complete heating failure and/or no hot water and where there are children under the age of 5, or people over the age of 70. 

Preparing for Winter 

Don’t leave it too late – make sure you get your flu jab and make sure your home is ready before the cold weather arrives. 

Top Tips 

  • Get your flu jab if you are eligible (It’s free for people over 65, anyone with a long term condition, carers, pregnant women and young children). Speak to your GP or pharmacist for more information. 
  • Keep your bedroom windows closed at night. 
  • Make sure you have enough food and supplies in the house if a cold snap is forecast. 
  • If you take medications make sure you take them regularly and have enough in stock in case you can’t get out of the house.

Who is more at risk from the cold? 

  • Over 65s 
  • Children under 5 years old
  • Pregnant women 
  • People with a long term health condition such as diabetes, respiratory illnesses, heart, liver or kidney disease or neurological disease
  • People with a weak immune system 
  • People with a disability.

Prevent your pipes from freezing 

The following tips will help stop the pipes in your home from freezing: 

  • Turn your heating on for short periods throughout the day and night.
  • Leave the heating on at a low level when you are away from home. This can be done by lowering the main heating control thermostat and turning thermostatic radiator valves down but not off. Consider leaving a key with a family member, friend or neighbour who can check your home regularly.
  • Don’t leave taps dripping or running as the water in waste pipes can freeze.
  • Allow hot air from the main house into the loft, this may mean opening a trap door during extreme cold periods.
  • Open the cupboard under the sink to ensure warm air can circulate round the piping.
  • Ensure that all doors throughout the house are slightly open for warm air to flow around the house.

How to deal with frozen pipes 

Most frozen pipes are found in the roof space and below sink units. 

  • Turn the water supply off at the stopcock. The stopcock is a valve for turning off and on the cold water system in your home. Stopcocks are usually found in your kitchen below the sink unit. However, in some houses the stopcock is found in a front or back hall. Please ensure that you know where the stopcock is located. You can shut off the supply by turning the stopcock in a clockwise direction. To turn the supply back on, turn the stopcock in an anti-clockwise direction.
  • To thaw frozen pipes put hot water bottles or a thick cloth soaked in hot water over the frozen pipe. A hairdryer at its lowest setting can also be used. Please be careful not to warm the pipes too quickly as this may lead to the pipe bursting. It is important that you thaw along the pipe starting from the end nearest the tap.

What to do if a pipe bursts 

  • Turn off the stopcock by turning it clockwise.
  • Try to block the escaping water with thick cloths such as towels to stop the leak spreading.
  • Turn off your central heating, immersion heater and any other water heating systems. If the central heating uses solid fuel, let this die out.
  • Once you have shut down your water heating, turn on all your taps to drain the system. Flushing your toilet several times may help.
  • If water leaks near anything electrical switch off the mains electricity immediately. If the mains switch is wet, don’t touch it as you risk electrocution.

Common faults with gas heating 

Frozen condensate pipes 

Modern boilers produce significant volumes of condensate (water) which normally discharges into a gulley. In very cold weather this condensate may freeze particularly where it discharges to an external gulley. To prevent this you can place a hot water bottle on the pipe close to where it discharges (this advice also applies to some oil boilers). In exceptional circumstances, we may need to disconnect the condensate pipe internally and allow it to drain into a basin. The basin will need to be emptied regularly and the pipe reconnected when the weather improves. 

Frozen gas regulators 

There may be a small amount of water vapour in the gas regulator which if it freezes will cause the gas supply to your boiler to fail. You should cover your meter with a towel or old clothing to provide some insulation. Place a hot water bottle on the regulator (grey metal fitting on the top left hand side of the meter) and remove once it has thawed any ice. Dry the regulator immediately. 

Boiler problems 

We all have issues with our boilers from time to time. But it’s not always necessary to contact us to fix problems with your boiler. Sometimes a boiler problem can be solved with a quick DIY fix. There are a number of quick fixes you can do to try to fix your boiler problem  

Home contents insurance 

Please be aware that it is your responsibility to insure your home contents. Choice insures the buildings only. Any damage to your property, regardless of the cause, is not insured by Choice. 

Help your neighbour 

During extreme weather conditions please check on your neighbours if they are elderly, have a disability or are housebound as it can be a difficult time for them to get out and about. A friendly visit from a neighbour will be appreciated. 

Are you dreading winter this year? 

Perhaps you’re worried about how to pay for your heating bills? If you have concerns about paying for your heating, there is help and advice available. 

Being too cold can cause problems for your breathing and lead to a bad chest or more serious illnesses such as a stroke or heart attack. 

Are you receiving the right benefits? 

 Halton Housing has a dedicated team of Welfare Benefit and Money Advice experts who are here help our customers with any welfare, money or benefit advice. The team can be contacted through the Halton Housing App or by emailing: welfare@haltonhousing.org, telephone: 07801548205. 

Are you eligible for the Warm Home Discount Scheme? 

You could get £140 off your electricity bill for winter 2018 to 2019 under the Warm Home Discount Scheme. 

For further information about staying warm and healthy this winter visit Halton Borough Council’s Stay Warm, Stay Healthy this Winter website.

Related Help & Support Articles

Find helpful articles on finding your next home with Halton Housing, and how to apply for a home here.

Help & Support Categories

We have 6 Help and Support categories to help make finding the help and advice you’re looking for that little bit easier, the categories include: Your Home, Health and Wellbeing, Help with Halton, Online Accessibility, Payments and Money and Your Career.

Looking to Move?

To apply to live in any of our properties you must have an active Property Pool Plus account. To register for an account, simply follow all of the Property Pool Plus registration steps.

Manage Your Tenancy 24 Hours a Day, at the Click of a Button by Downloading Our Customer App.

Our Customer App allows you to manage your Halton Housing tenancy 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. You can now pay your rent, raise a query, report a repair, report anti-social behaviour and do so much more via the Customer App, download it today!

Latest News

Stay up to date with all the latest Halton Housing news here

Read More News
halton housing has published its gender pay gap review for 2019
Halton News

Halton Housing publishes 2019 Gender Pay Gap ...

4th November 2019

Halton Housing has today published its gender pay gap report for 2019, for the second year, in line with the government’s Gender Pay Gap regulations introduced in April 2017.  In 2019, Halton Housing maintained its positive gender pay gap report with female employees receiving on an average (mean) salary 1% more than male counterparts and the overall median salary showing 12% in favour of female employees in comparison […]

find out more
Halton Lodge new play area opening with halton housing and partners
Halton News

Community comes together to open new play par...

1st November 2019

A newly renovated play park has been unveiled in Halton Lodge, Runcorn.   The upgrade is thanks to significant investment from Halton Housing, funding from the Environmental Fund and from Halton Borough Council’s Area Forum fund with support from the Area Forum 5 Councillors; Kath Loftus, Alan Lowe, Dave Thompson, Chris Loftus and Geoffrey Logan. Earlier this year, […]

find out more
Halton Housing supporting Cheshire Police on there Operation Treacle
Halton News

Supporting Cheshire Police during Halloween a...

23rd October 2019

Halton Housing is pleased to be supporting Cheshire Police’s Operation Treacle.   The operation has been launched in a bid to tackle anti-social behaviour during Halloween and the Bonfire Night period.  Staff from Halton Housing’s Anti-social Behaviour and Tenancy Enforcement teams will be taking part in the multi-agency operation with officers from Cheshire Police, staff […]

find out more
halton housing customer engagement team with Laura Bevan from Fortuna Femail Society
Halton News

Funding support for popular Halton women’s ...

18th October 2019

A Widnes based community group for women has received funding from Halton Housing to support its annual event. Fortuna Female Society aims to support and empower the women of Halton while championing their rights. The society runs regular activities and events, enabling women to increase their confidence and giving them the opportunity to get involved […]

find out more
Halton Housing is supporting Get Online Week
Halton News

Halton Housing supporting Get Online Week 201...

11th October 2019

As an organisation leading the way with our Digital First programme, we’re proud to be supporting Get Online Week – an initiative led by Good Things Foundation, aimed at increasing people’s confidence using computers and the internet.  The annual campaign, which this year runs from 14 to 20 October, inspires organisations like Halton Housing to make sure that everyone can […]

find out more
Welfare Benefit Money Advice Team
Uncategorized

Blog: Customer Service through Customers̵...

10th October 2019

Customeyes: Becoming a customer experience-led organisation​   National Customer Service Week is the perfect opportunity to shout about Customeyes, our sector-leading customer experience programme. Customeyes helps us to know our customers better, and turning their feedback into action, by delivering easy, intuitive and personalised services. It also makes good business sense, as it means we are delivering services that our customers value, […]

find out more

Sign Up For Regular Updates

Would you like to receive news and updates straight to your inbox? Tell us your email address and areas you are interested in, and we will send you relevant updates

alert align-leftanti_socialinfo-Asset 3 arrow_down_thicker_no_fillarrow_down_white arrow_down_whitearrow_downarrow_leftarrow_rightarrow_up_accordion arrow_up_tail article Untitled-1info-Asset 4 tenancycalendarcameracard clockcollaborationcomputerAsset 4 cross_arrows crosscurves down_arrowdownload-2duohouseAsset 2emote_1 emote_2 emote_3 emote_4 emote_5 figured_arrowsUntitled-2flaggradient_briefcase info-Asset 5 helphh Untitled-2Untitled-3house_helpicon_additional_incomeicon_alcoholicon_benefitsicon_bettingicon_car_insuranceicon_child_benefitsicon_childcareAsset 1 icon_clothingicon_council_taxAsset 4 icon_electricityicon_gasicon_groceryicon_gymAsset 5 icon_home_insuranceicon_iAsset 3 icon_petrolAsset 1 icon_renticon_takeawaysicon_total_incomeicon_travel_feesicon_tvWage after Taxicon_waterkey_features keyholderleft_arrowinfo-Asset 5 live_chatUntitled-3 megaphonemessagemouse new_homes pause Page 1Created with Sketch. pen info-Asset 9 percentagepersontickpet_iconinfo-Asset 6 plant_iconplay Asset 2 info-Asset 7 property_overview qualright_arrow_whiteright_arrowsearch Untitled-3slider_next slider_prev smileyFacebook Google Plus Instagram social_linkedin Pinterest Twitter YouTube socialUntitled-3square_triangle Untitled-3info-Asset 8 triangle-left Untitled-2 wifi-glyph-24