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Spotting leaks at home can be a challenge as they are often hidden. In most cases an increase in your bill may be the first sign that there might be an issue.

Leaks don’t just have an impact on your pocket, they can cause damage to your appliances or even your home itself. Take a look at the information below on what to do if you spot a leak at home or while out and about.

What to do if there is a leak in your home

There are lots of reasons your internal pipe work can burst, especially during the winter when the weather is cold. If you've got a leak in your home, or on your land, it is your responsibility to get it fixed. Don't worry, there are a few simple steps you can follow.

#1 Open your meter chamber, remove the polystyrene on top of the meter and any surface water that may have collected in the chamber

#2 To help make sure you're looking at the correct water meter, turn your external stop tap off and turn on the tap inside the property. If no water comes out of your tap, this is your meter

#3 Turn the water back on at the meter and make a note of the meter reading

#4 Don't use any water for the next 30 minutes and then take a reading. If the reading has changed, this indicates water escaping from somewhere

#5 To help find out where and without using any water, turn the water off at the internal stop tap. Wait 30 minutes to an hour, then take another meter reading (a change in the reading could indicate water escaping externally). If there's no change at this step, it indicates water escaping internally

#6 If there's no change to your water meter reading during the above checks this means no water is escaping and there are no leaks.

#7 If you find a leak, contact a local plumber to repair it as soon as possible. We recommend WaterSafe – a one-stop shop which brings together thousands of qualified plumbers. Visit or call 0333 207 9030

What to do if you spot a leak in the street

Spotted a leak while out and about? First check if we know about the leak. You can do this using our live map. If you can't see the leak marked on the map, chances are we don't know about it. Watch our short video below to find out how to report it to us. 

If the leak is severe or you have a water emergency please call our 24/7 emergency line on 0333 000 0365

Water pipe responsibility

The water mains and pipes in public roads and footpaths are our responsibility as your water company. Pipes not in the road or footpath and all your internal pipework is normally your responsibility (take a look at our diagram below).

However not all supply pipes are set out in this way. For example, you may share your supply pipe with a neighbour. It's easy to find out if you do share a supply by checking how many external stop taps are outside your home. These are usually found in the pavement 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.

Both the stop tap and meter are our responsibility and it's our duty to fix any leaks that might happen here. The pipe that carries water from the stop tap into your house is called the supply pipe and this is normally your responsibility. In the event of a leak on this pipe or within your property, you may find that you are covered by your household insurance policy. We recommend that you contact an approved plumber by visiting or by calling 0333 207 9030 to carry out the repair.


Leak allowance

If you find and fix a leak in your property within 30 days, you might qualify for a leak allowance. This reduces your high bill, to cover the cost of water you've lost through a leak. We don't think it's fair you pay for water that you haven't used. Instead, we want to reward you for getting the problem fixed.

You must be on a water meter to qualify and will need to take a meter reading when you find the leak and another one around two weeks later.

Our work to find and fix leaks

Our team of leak technicians work around the clock to make sure we're doing all we can to reduce and stop leakage. We're already among the top five water companies in the UK for our leakage performance, but we're always striving to do more. Click below to find out what we're doing.

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