Water and wastewater services for Kent, Sussex, Hampshire and the Isle of Wight
Your water

Find out how to save water, energy and money and learn a bit about your water supply

You are here: At home » Your water » Leaks » Leaks at your home

Need help?

Type your question into the box below or see what other customers often ask.

Report a leak

If you spot a water leak, please:

Complete our form

Or call our 24-hour Leakline

0800 820 999


Working outside your property

Alt text here

Click on the image to enlarge

How do leaks happen?

Temperature changes (such as extreme cold and prolonged dry spells) can cause the ground to move – putting strain on our underground water mains and causing them to leak.

Illegal standpipes, high commercial water use and other industrial misuse can lead to unexpected pressure surges in the water mains, which can also lead to bursts.

Many of the pipes within our water main network are metal (generally cast iron). These pipes have stood the test of time but are starting to show their age. Our mains replacement programme aims to replace the older pipes with plastic pipes to protect water supplies well into the future.

Illustration of a typical installation

Examples of reinstatements

Temporary reinstatement

Permanent reinstatement

Block paving
Block paving

Slab paving
Slab paving

Tarmac surface
Tarmac surface

Pedestrian footplace
Concrete curing

Frequently asked question

  1. What is a temporary reinstatement? 
    • A temporary reinstatement is a temporary and safe fix of the affected area. The temporary reinstatement may not use the same material as before so may appear different.

      This will be rectified when a permanent reinstatement is completed.
  2. Why did you not complete a permanent reinstatement? 
    • To complete a permanent reinstatement we need to use specialist equipment and be sure the ground has settled after the fix. This could take up to four months to do so.
  3. Why is it a different colour? 
    • All reinstatement material is new and therefore has not undergone ageing or weathering to the same degree that the original material has.

      We endeavour to match as close as possible to the existing material in order to minimise colour differences.
  4. It is not very neat! 
    • Any reinstatement left at interim by the repair team is temporary, to ensure that the site is left safe.

      The reinstatement team who will then carry out the permanent reinstatement will ensure that the patch is left neat and tidy. Both the temporary and permanent reinstatements will comply with the standards set by the local Highways Authority.
  5. Why is the ground stained, will the stain always be there? 
    • Whilst carrying out the repair the wet material excavated contains chalk and clay and may result in temporary staining. Our teams sweep and wash all sites and any staining will fade in due course.
  6. Where are the paving slabs? 
    • We try to leave all paving slabs in the vicinity of the works. Where this is not feasible, we will take them back to the depot for safe keeping.

      We always endeavour to re-use existing slabs, however, on occasion, slabs may be damaged when performing the initial excavation and require to be renewed.

      Where possible we’ll exchange like for like. Damaged slabs are removed and recycled
  7. Why did you not ask my permission before working outside of my house? 
    • All pavements, roads and kerbs unless privately owned are the responsibility of the local Highways Authority and all work we carry out is done with their full knowledge and agreement.
  Close box