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Tell your insurer before making home bio diesel, firm warns

Making bio diesel at home can be dangerous - and might invalidate home insurance claims if an accident occurs.Defaqto said today that mixing cooking oil with ethanol and caustic soda, a common method of making the fuel, was becoming increasingly common among householders as they battled to counteract price rises at the pump.The firm made the comments following the widely-reported case of a Northamptonshire man, who suffered 20 per cent burns and severe damage to his garage after accidentally igniting his home-made fuel.Mike Powell, consultant for general insurance at Defaqto, said: "The dangers of producing your own bio diesel are very real; however, for some people the savings to be made are very enticing. If you are intending to manufacture your own bio diesel, you should first check with your home insurer to confirm that cover will be provided against any damage caused to your home."He added: "Finding out after an explosion that cover is not provided could leave you in a disastrous financial position, as the costs of repair would be beyond most people's reach. "If the worst was to happen and your home was completely destroyed, then being homeless is a far more worrying position to be in than saving a few pounds by producing your own diesel."

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