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Checking for leaks

A higher than expected bill is often the first sign you’re using more water than normal. And while there may be an obvious reason for the increase, such as recent building work at home or a new addition to the family, it could signal a leak or problems with your plumbing.

 

How to check for leaks

Leaks can waste a lot of water if they’re not fixed quickly. If you think you’ve a leak and have a water meter, try the following:

 

  1. Open the meter chamber and remove the polystyrene on top of the meter plus any collected surface water (a sponge usually does the trick). 
  2. To ensure you're looking at the correct water meter, turn off the external stop tap and turn on a tap inside your property. If no water comes out, it’s 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 to one hour and then take a reading. If the reading’s changed, water’s escaping from somewhere.
  5. To find out where, and without using any water, turn the water off at your internal stop tap. Wait 30 minutes to one hour and take another meter reading. If there’s a change in the reading, water’s escaping externally. If there’s no change, it’s escaping internally.
  6. If there’s no change to the water meter readings throughout this whole test then no water is escaping and there is no leak.

 

Shared water

In some cases, particularly older properties which have been converted into flats, there may be a joint or shared water supply. So rather than indicating a leak, the meter could be recording water being used by a neighbour. If this could be the case, call us on 03457 145 145 and we'll investigate.

If you discover a leak

Arrange for it to be repaired as soon as possible, Our online search tool WaterSafe lists approved plumbers in your area. You may be able to claim an allowance for additional water recorded on your meter during the leak. For more details call 03457 919 155 or use our online form.

Leakage allowances

Checking for leaks leaflet