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Why it can take so long to fix leaks

Mending leaks can be a complicated business, and we know it sometimes takes longer than we’d all like to get everything fixed. We understand it’s especially annoying to see a leak, report it, and then see it again a few days later and feel like nothing’s been done.

Some jobs take longer because they’re more complicated to plan. For instance, if the leak is in the road or public area, we may need to get permission from Local Authorities to dig. We also need to make traffic management plans to keep the roads around us safe and moving while we work.

Some leaks are more serious than others and we prioritise making sure everyone has access to clean water, so we constantly look at what repairs are scheduled to make sure we’re repairing the most urgent leaks first.

Stay up to date

See the latest status of any leak that affects you on our online map.

What happens when I report a leak?

We’d like to explain a bit more about what goes on behind the scenes before we can get a leak fixed, so you can feel secure in the knowledge that our team are hard at work, trying to get any leaks fixed as soon as possible.


  • Step 1: A leak report
    • As a customer you can report a leak online.
    • If it’s urgent it’s best to call us so we can get a technician out to investigate as soon as possible - 0345 357 2407
    • We also have teams out and about in our area every day looking for leaks.
  • Step 2: Investigation
    • Our technician visits to see what’s causing the leak.
    • Urgent leaks (within 2 hours) – when it’s affecting supply, or causing flooding or damage a technician will be on site as soon as possible
    • Serious leaks (within 24 hours) – when it’s not affecting to supply but a there’s a significant amount of water being leaked
    • Less serious leaks (up to 3 days) – all other leaks
  • Step 3: Planning the repair
    • Based on the investigation we plan what’s needed to carry out the repair and schedule a date.
    • If the leak is on a major road we need to apply to local authorities for permission and agree the best way to carry out the repair safely with the least disruption.
    • We’ll always do this as quickly as we can and whilst it can take up to 30 days, we can usually fix things much faster than this.
    • Once we have the right permission and permits, we can schedule the work.
  • Step 4: Repair
    • Wherever possible our repair team will come on the scheduled day to fix the leak, but our priority is to make sure everyone has access to clean water, so we sometimes need to change plans to do emergency repairs.
    • If we need to put in place road closures, or temporary traffic controls, this can take a bit longer to organise.
    • We won’t turn anyone’s water off unless we really need to, and we’ll always let you know before we do.
  • Step 5: Restore
    • We’ll put the area back to normal within 3 working days. This can be anything from resurfacing the road, to resowing grass seeds.
    • Even if we can’t replace a specialist surface exactly like-for-like, we’ll still always provide a safe, suitable surface for the area.
    • Throughout the works, we’ll make sure the area is safe while we’re working or if we need to leave the site.
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