Paddling pools, barbeques and picnics to the ready - with temperatures hitting 30C in some parts of the country, Britain is enjoying a heatwave that forecasters expect to last until the weekend.
While this is a great opportunity to enjoy some warmth, the balmy days of summer can also bring about some unexpected risks to people’s homes and possessions. We’ve trawled home insurance claims made by Ageas customers over the past seven years, to help you avoid making the same mistakes.
1. Careful where you seek shade
At a picnic site, one man decided to put his laptop and Kindle e-book reader under his car to keep them out of the sun. Out of sight, out of mind, he then drove straight over them, having forgotten all about it.
2. Don’t leave electrical devices in the full glare of the sun
We all like to listen to summer tunes when lazing in the garden. But insurance claims have been made for iPod screens cracking after being left in the blazing sun. Exposure to high temperatures could also permanently shorten battery life of iPhones, according to a recent warning from Apple.
3. Don’t sweat it
One man was sweating so much on a hot day that the phone in his pocket got damaged by perspiration. Sweaty hands were responsible for another customer dropping their phone and smashing the screen.
4. Beware melting roads
Not everyone realises tarmac roads can melt on a scorching hot day. One policyholder walked into her house with tar all over her shoes. Tarmac and carpets aren’t happy companions.
5. Think about where you put your specs
Glasses really can concentrate sunlight enough to start fires. One Ageas customer found two holes burnt into their carpet after leaving their glasses on the floor. A sewing machine, armchairs and laptops are among other victims of burns caused by sunlight passing through glass objects.
6. Barbecue some burgers - not your house
Burnt burgers and undercooked chicken aren’t the worst of it. One customer accidentally put a BBQ skewer into the fan in their oven, breaking it. Another used their BBQ too close to their house, with the heat causing a glass window pane to crack.
7. Control your parasol
One person’s parasol, caught by a gust of wind, flew up onto their conservatory roof. In other similar instances, claims have been made for fly-away parasols smashing glass garden tables and even mobile phones.
8. Leave the paddling pool to the kids
Cameras, iPads, mobile phones and watches have all ended up in paddling pools, with expensive results. Sometimes they fall out of people’s pockets, and other times small children simply take them into the water with them.
9. Never throw your lolly
This happens more than might be expected. One policyholder threw an ice lolly to his wife, hitting her hand and dislodging the stone from her ring. Others have thrown lollies at the TV, cracking the screen.
10. Look after your sunglasses
A frequent cause for insurance claims, sunglasses get sat on, stepped on, dropped, driven over, lost overboard on boat trips, and even chewed by the family dog.