Have I got a leak?
If your water bill seems to be higher than usual and nothing has changed in your business – it is possible you may have a leak. If we see a significant increase in usage we will contact you. However, we would urge all customers to take and monitor their own meter reads as missing a leak could cost you money as it is your responsibility if it is on your premises.
Follow these steps to find out if you have a leak:
- Turn off all appliances that use water but ensure the internal stop tap is left open
- Take a reading of your meter prior to a period of no water use such as when employees have all left for the day
- Check the water meter again when you return in the morning
- If the reading has stayed the same, there is not an internal leak, however if the reading is different from the one taken the day before, you may have a leak
- If you think you have a leak after carrying out this test, be sure to get in touch with a plumber ASAP
To find out whether you have an external leak on your service supply pipe, follow the steps below. Please be aware that this check requires you to turn off your water supply for a short period of time, therefore you may need to notify employees or carry out this test during a quiet period.
- Firstly, you’ll need to locate your meter
- Open the meter chamber/box
- Next, locate your stop tap
- Close the stop tap by turning it clockwise, if you cannot turn the stop tap, you will need to call a plumber to prevent breaking the tap
- Record your meter reading so you can see whether the meter dial is still moving after the stop tap has been closed
- Keep the stop tap closed and take another reading around an hour later
- Subtract the first reading from the second to give you the volume of water lost per hour to an underground leak
Who is responsible for fixing the leak?
If increased water consumption is due to leakage and is caused by faulty water company equipment such as the meter, charges will be adjusted accordingly. However, if the leak is on private pipework and the water has passed through the meter it becomes the responsibility of the customer. Check out our pipe responsibility blog for more information.
Example 1: This shows a simple individual supply pipe, any leak on here is your responsibility.
Example 2: This is a shared supply pipe, if the leak is in the position indicated it would be your responsibility.
Example 3: If the leak is as shown, then it is both yours and Business A’s responsibility.
Example 4: Finally, if the leak is as shown here it is all three businesses responsibility.
The leak is my responsibility, what should I do next?
You should organise the repair with an approved plumber and you will be responsible for water consumption charges. You may find you can claim for such costs through your insurance and you may be able to apply for a leak allowance with your sewerage retailer, should the water have not returned to the sewer.
What if the leak is an emergency situation?
If the leak is an emergency, please contact the appropriate regional water company. You can find their contact details here.
You can find more help and useful information here.