Water to your tap - leaking pipes

Water is brought to your homes through thousands of kilometres of underground pipes. For various reasons, pipes can leak and some water is lost between the treatment works and your home.


How do we measure up?

After listening to the views of our customers, who told us that they would like to see us reduce the number of leaks, we developed a strategy which aims to reduce leakage to 85Ml/d (million litres a day) between 2015 and 2020. That figure is well below the target set out in our Water Resources Management Plan. In order to do this we have invested more money and employed more people to find and fix leaks.

We are using cutting edge technology to find the smallest leaks that we could not have found in the past.

In 2016-17 we had 88.6Ml/d of leakage (about 17% of the water we put into supply) compared to a target of 90.9Ml/d.

This year the weather was particularly challenging, but our teams worked hard and found a record number of leaks - 500 more than in 2015/16.

This reduction in leakage has only been achieved by investing in the latest technology.

As well as finding more leaks, we are also repairing them more quickly, which is what our customer research said was important to customers. More than 90% of visible leaks are repaired within 24 hours of being reported.

The vast majority of leaks are very small – no faster than a dripping tap, so finding these leaks is difficult. Our investment in new technology listens for these small leaks at night, when there is less background noise, means we are finding more and more of these smaller leaks – helping us to reduce leakage further.

Our performance is consistently better than average in the industry in terms of leakage per property and leakage per kilometre of water main. More importantly it is well below the target set out in our Water Resources Management Plan which we consulted with customers on.  

Top tip!

Our calculation includes not only the leaks from our water mains, but also leaks from some customer pipes too. If you think you may have a leak on your supply pipe, contact us. Although the pipe is owned by you, in many cases we can help repair it.