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Freezer contents cover and home insurance

Did you know your home insurance can cover the value of the food in your freezer? Find out if your policy includes this and how to make a claim.

amy smith
Amy Smith
Updated 25 May 2021  | 2 min read

Cover for your freezer and its contents

The food in your freezer might not be your first priority when it comes to choosing home insurance, but think about how much it would actually cost you if your freezer broke down.

Key points

  • Freezer contents cover will cover you if your frozen food is spoiled
  • Cover is available either as standard or as an optional extra
  • Check your policy carefully for exclusions and excesses if you're considering a claim

Freezers are mainly used for long-term stocking up on food, so it’s likely your freezer is pretty full. It could be costly to replace it all, along with the expense of buying a new freezer.

If you’re preparing for a summer barbeque or storing food for Christmas, the loss of your freezer contents can add up to hundreds of pounds.

Freezer contents cover will pay for the loss to your freezer food if it becomes inedible. This usually happens due to power failure that results in the food defrosting and being spoiled.

Do you need freezer cover?

Consider how much the food in your freezer is worth - it could be more than you think.

Some policies will also provide a temporary hire freezer until yours can be repaired or replaced.

You will have to pay an excess if you make a claim though, so the pay-out you receive will be reduced by the amount of the excess.

If your excess is high, it might not be worth claiming in the first place, especially as a claim probably means your insurance premiums will increase next year.

And if the value of the food is less than your excess, you won’t be able to make a claim.

Generally, you can claim for freezer contents loss if:

  • The temperature changes
  • Your food is contaminated by refrigeration fumes
  • Your freezer accidentally breaks down
  • There’s a power cut beyond your control

Freezer contents cover exclusions

If you haven’t kept up with your electricity bills, which results in your power being cut off, you can’t claim on your freezer contents cover.

Claims as a result of planned power outages (such as for maintenance work) won’t be considered either.

There might be age limits on the freezers your insurer will cover - usually excluding those over 10 years old. You won’t be covered if your home is unoccupied or unfurnished.

Incidences that can be predicted or prevented won’t be included either, such as if you accidentally turn the power supply off.

Buying freezer cover

Freezer cover usually comes as standard with most home contents insurance policies.

According to Defaqto, 93% of 377 home contents policies listed offer cover for your freezer contents as standard.

A further 3% have freezer cover as an optional extra. Cover is often quite generous, as 75% of contents policies with freezer cover will insure you up to the total figure given for your home contents cover.[2]

Most insurers will have cover for damaged food caused by rising or falling temperatures, or fumes escaping, but your insurer won’t pay out if the fault was deliberately caused by someone, or if your home was unoccupied for a long period of time
Ryan Fulthorpe, GoCompare’s home insurance expert

Making a claim for freezer contents

If you need to make a claim, you’ll need to tell your insurer exactly what you’ve lost and how much it’s worth.

Don’t be tempted to exaggerate, as your insurer won’t pay out if they think the amount is too much and it might compare the items you’ve declared against the cubic volume of your freezer.

Some insurers will insist on seeing receipts or other evidence before paying out on your claim.

Extra cover during Christmas or other celebrations

Some insurers will provide extra cover for seasonal events or celebrations where you might have more food in your freezer than usual.

This isn’t always the case though, so it’s best to check your policy wording or shop around for a policy that covers what you need it to.

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[1] Based on independent research by Consumer Intelligence during 01 May to 31 May: 51% of consumers could achieve a saving of up to £107.99 with Gocompare.com buildings and contents insurance based on a comparison of 36 companies.

[2] Last checked 18 May 2021

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