Help with water leaks

Find out what we are doing about leaks, who’s responsible for them, how and when to report one, and our processes and timeframes for fixing them. 

How do we deal with leaks?

We fix around 16,000 leaks a year and 70% of them are on our pipework with the remainder of them being on customers' private supply pipes.

We appreciate the impact leaks can have on our customers and the environment, so our leakage inspectors work day and night to detect leaking pipes.

We also aim to respond as quickly as possible to reports of leaks to ensure customers don’t go without water, while also reducing the amount of water wasted.

What are the causes of leaks?

Pipes can leak for a number or reasons, such as:

  • freezing weather causing burst pipes
  • the weight of traffic on roads above
  • the age and condition of our pipes and those owned by customers.

Who is responsible for fixing leaks?

Leaks in the road or pavement will most likely be on our pipework. We always repair leaks on these pipes as quickly as possible. Please report leaks in the road or pavement to us.

Leaks outside your home but on your land will most likely be on your private supply pipe. This pipe is your responsibility, but we will help with repairs (where possible). Please report leaks outside your home but on your land to us.

Leaks in your home will most likely be on your internal plumbing. You are responsible for the maintenance of the plumbing inside your property. Please contact a qualified plumber to fix leaks in your home. 

Pipework Responsibility Supply

Our pipework

We maintain it and fix leaks as quickly as we can.

Your private supply pipe

Your responsibility, but we'll help you look after it.

Your pipework and fittings

Your responsibility, and you'll need to contact a plumber if you have any problems with them. Find a plumber

Report a leak

If the leak is on our pipework or your private supply pipe (in the road or pavement), let us know and we will come and investigate as soon as possible. Before reporting a leak, you can check if it has already been reported by using our map.

How to check for leaks

If you are unsure whether a leak is on your internal plumbing or your water supply pipe, follow our advice on how to check for leaks.

Fixing leaks

The following information explains more about the processes and timeframes for fixing leaks on our pipework and private supply pipes.

Reported a leak in the road – what’s next?

On our pipework

On average, we repair leaks on our pipework and carry out a permanent resurfacing within 15 working days.

On private supply pipes

We aim to fix leaks on your private supply pipe free of charge, usually within ten working days or sooner.

Other important information

If we don't supply your water

If your water is supplied by a different company and you have a leak on your private supply pipe, unfortunately, we will not be able to help. Check Water UK to see who supplies your water if you are unsure.

Working hours

We will look for leaks and repair or replace your supply pipe free of charge during normal working hours (Monday to Friday, 8am to 6pm). Visits and repairs outside these times may be chargeable.

Pipe size and accessibility

We will repair pipes for you where the length of your private supply pipe from the street boundary is 12m or less. The pipes need to be accessible and not pass under any structure, such as hedges or outbuildings, or tiered gardens.

If you receive additional support

Customers on one of our help-to-pay schemes or means-tested benefits may qualify for a free leak repair even if their private supply pipe is longer than 12m.

Repair limits

There is no limit to the number of repairs we will do for you; sometimes we may replace a section of pipe rather than repair it.

Fitting meters

When we fit a meter we will automatically check for a leak and repair it according to our terms and conditions.

Excavating your property

If we carry out the work for you, we will have to excavate your property. We will do our best to leave everything as we found it. We can show you examples of the sort of finish we hope to achieve.