Water pipe responsibility
Find out who maintains the pipework - and who to contact if you have any problems.
There a two main groups who are responsible for water pipes. The water company, and the homeowner.
We are responsible for water pipes and infrastructure on public land, up to the external stop tap. This is where your home connects to the network. We look after water meters too, whether they’re inside or outside your home.
If you live in a terrace house or apartment, you might be on a shared supply.
A shared supply - also often called a joint supply - is where a group of homes connect to our network at the same point. This means all properties share responsibility for repair and maintenance of the pipework.
You can find out if you're on a shared supply by checking how many external stop taps are outside your home.
External stop taps are usually found in the pavement or boundary box at the property.
If there is an external stop tap outside every home on the street, then each home will have its own supply. If there's only one, you are likely to be on a shared supply with your neighbours.
If you want to make changes to pipework on a shared or joint supply, it's best to advise your neigbours and discuss the work with them first.
If one of you wants to leave the shared supply, you may find that it makes practical sense for each of the members of the shared supply to switch too. Moving to single supplies at the same time would mean only having to pay for cost of one Highways Permit for the team carrying out the work.
You can leave a shared supply and connect your home to the network.
You will need to arrange a new connection with us and make sure an accredited plumber relays your private pipework.
We will connect that private pipework to our network once it has been inspected and we have confirmed that it meets the required standards.
It's vital that we are able to check and approve any new private pipework before connection, so we can make sure it's safe to use.
If you encounter a problem in a public space, such as a leak on a road or pathway, we will be responsibile for fixing it.
You can report a problem like this to us on our website, by webchat or by calling our customer care team on 0800 783 4444.
Leaks and bursts on private property are your responsibility. But if you need help, we’ll be able to give you advice on what to do and how to fix the problem.
You may need to contact your insurer before getting in touch with a plumber to make the necessary repairs.
We would recommend that you use a approved plumber near you to carry out any work.