How to reduce the risks of a thatch fire this winter

thatched cottage with white walls and red front door

As the winter nights become colder, many people will be turning to their fireplaces to keep warm. If you own a thatched property, you could be running the risk of a thatch roof fire. Fortunately, our team of thatched roof insurance experts are on hand to share their tips and advice for thatch fire protection.

The Winter Risks Of Thatch Roof Fires

At Higos, we understand every thatch home is unique. At the same time, owning such a unique property comes with a greater risk of a thatch roof fire. This is particularly true during the winter season. 

Most thatched properties have woodfire chimneys as their main source of heating. Perhaps unsurprisingly then, the most common cause of thatch roof fires comes from the embers and sparks around these chimneys.

A fire at a thatched roof property can be almost impossible to control, and often with devastating consequences. Thatched roofs are designed to shed water which makes it notoriously difficult to put out a fire once it’s started.

With this in mind, the best countermeasure is to prevent fires from the offset. Keep reading for our thatch fire protection advice.

Tips To Reduce The Risk Of A Fire

  • Burn only seasoned or kiln-dried wood. Avoid anything with a moisture level over 20%.
  • Follow the manufacturer’s guidelines for wood burner ventilation and recommended conditions.
  • Sweep your chimney regularly, and have it inspected by a certified professional! Do this both at the start and during the burning season.
  • Remove spark arrestors. Instead, consider using a bird guard.
  • Take care when lighting fires. Avoid using paper and card as these materials can be unpredictable. Consider firelighters instead.
  • Carry out CCTV inspections to identify areas of concern in your chimney. In a damaged chimney structure, there could be gaps that allow embers to pass through to the thatch.
  • Keep wood-burner baffles clean.
  • Make sure the top of your chimney is a good height above the thatch. Remember, the higher the better! The height of your chimney will have an impact on the dispersal of embers away from the roof.
  • All normal fire-safety precautions must also apply to your thatched property, such as the safe use of electrical items.
  • Avoid improper sizing of your thatched roof.
  • Avoid periods of long burning, or smouldering fires.

Take Out Suitable Thatched Property Insurance

A thatched property is not only expensive to build, but also to repair and maintain. Due to this, it’s highly recommended that you take out a specialist thatched house insurance policy that’s tailored to your needs.

At Higos, we’re a Chartered Status broker with years of experience in the thatched roof insurance industry. We won’t shy away from homes that don’t easily tick all the boxes. Our expert and friendly thatch insurance team excel in finding excellent levels of cover for all thatched properties, with a specialist in-house claims team for when you need support the most.

Specialist Thatched Home Insurance

Are you interested in speaking to a Chartered Insurance broker for a thatched property insurance quote? Get in touch today. We will be happy to talk through the unique properties of your home and share further advice on how to protect your thatched home this winter. Call us on 01458 675522, or fill out our online call-back form and a member of our thatch home insurance team will get back to you.

Get in touch

Give us a call on 01458 675522 if you have any questions or click the 'request a callback' button.