Swinton Insurance

September 20, 2009 19:16 ET

Cleaning Catastrophes Cost UK Homeowners Millions

MANCHESTER, UNITED KINGDOM--(Marketwire - Sept. 21, 2009) - UK Homeowners are blowing millions of pounds each year by ruining household items by using unsuitable cleaning products, according to Swinton, the UK's leading high street retailer of home insurance.

Last week, an over enthusiastic cleaner nearly destroyed the 800 year old Magna Carta with chemical cleaner after the document's case malfunctioned.

Following the popularity of shows such as 'How Clean is Your House' many people are concocting their own cleaning products using common household ingredients such as lemon, white vinegar and bicarbonate of soda. However, if not used correctly these 'home-brews' could cause permanent damage to furniture and electrical items.

A survey of 1,500 Swinton customers found that 31% had caused un-repairable damage to a household item through a cleaning mishap in the last two years. The most common cleaning catastrophe was removing varnish from tables or work surfaces, followed by scratching television screens.

Swinton is warning that items damaged in cleaning accidents will only be insured if the item is protected by 'accidental damage' cover.

Steve Chelton, Insurer Development Manager for Swinton, said: "When buying home insurance it's very important to know if it includes accidental damage cover, and if so what items are protected. Most insurers will offer additional accidental damage cover for just a slightly higher premium."

Swinton is offering the following cleaning advice:

- Always follow manufacturers' instructions

- Be careful if mixing own cleaners - combining some items can give off toxic fumes

- Rather than mixing your own cleaning products, buy ready-made ones which are made specifically for certain surfaces or tasks

About Swinton

- With 580 branches nationwide Swinton is the UK's largest high street insurance retailer

- Unlike many other companies in the financial services industry, Swinton is committed to keeping its branches open for business, and part of the community

- Swinton provides a one-stop-shop for the insurance and related needs of its clients, offering home, car, caravan, business, holiday, motorbike and even classic car insurance

- With a dedicated team of advisors on hand at every branch to search a panel of insurers to offer quality cover at competitive rates

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