Building near a water main
Buildings are not permitted near or over our water infrastructure. Easements are detailed below.
You are not permitted to build within three metres of a public water main and this distance may increase where necessary to protect our main as stated in the table below. We must have unrestricted access to repair, maintain or renew the main as required.
If you propose to build closer to the water mains than the stated criteria you will be expected to pay for the water main to be diverted.
|Diameter of water main||Easement|
|<=150mm (6")||6 metres (3 metres either side of the water main)|
|151 mm to 600 mm ("2 to 24")||7 metres (3.5 metres either side of the water main)|
|>=601mm (>=24")||9 metres (4.5 metres either side of the water main)|
Please note: these easements are from the outside barrel of the water main
How can we help
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My bill is in credit, can I get a refund?
We can discuss the details with you by calling you back. Please complete the details in our Arrange a free call back section on the right. If you’ve moved or closed your account, we’ll try to give you a refund by direct credit in to your bank or by cheque if you’ve...
What area do you serve?
We provide water and sewerage services to Devon, Cornwall and small parts of Dorset and Somerset. Our region is nearly 4,300 square miles (11,137 square kilometres) in size. There are 1.6 million residents and around 5 million visitors a year. We provide clean water to...
Where can I find my customer reference number?
Your 10 digit customer reference number can be found at the top of your latest bill.If you can’t find your bill, we can call you back. Please complete the details in our Arrange a free call back section on the right.
How do I order a water butt?
You can order a water butt from the specialist savewatersavemoney. By installing a water butt directly to your gutter downpipe, you will collect rainwater from the roof and can then use it for watering plants, topping up a pond or washing your car. On average every year...
What do I need to do if I’m planning to build an extension or conservatory?
If you are building close to or over a public sewer, you’ll need to complete a Build Over Enquiry application form. You can find more guidance on building near public sewers.
Does my pipework need to meet with any regulations?
Yes, pipework and plumbing must comply with the Water Supply (Water Fittings) Regulations 1999. These are designed to stop contamination of water supplies by preventing back-flow, back-siphonage and interconnections of water from other sources.
Can I arrange to lay my own water mains and make service connection?
Yes, if you are or are employing an accredited self lay organisation, you can undertake this work. You can agree with us to lay your water mains and connections using a multi-utility contractor. The designer and contractor should be approved through Lloyds Register...
How much does a new water connection cost?
We’ll provide you with a quote which will be specific to your connection requirements after we’ve completed a site survey. The quote will be made up of: Connection costs (all work, materials required for us to make connection) Traffic management (depending on the...
How do I apply for a new sewer connection?
You can complete our sewer connection application form and return it to us by email, the guidance notes contain more information. You’ll need to arrange for a drain to be laid from your property to our sewer, therefore a connection is only possible if we have a sewer...
Can I build over a public sewer?
Yes, if your extension or proposed building work is over or within 3 metres of a public sewer or lateral drain, you’ll need to let us know. You’ll need to check our guidance notes to ensure you meet the criteria and if so, complete the Declaration of works form online...
Why do I need permission to build over or close to a public sewer?
We need to approve your proposal of works (even if you have already had planning permission granted) as your building could cause damage or prevent access to the sewer. Some conservatories and minor works don’t always need planning and/or building regulation approval,...
What if my extension was built over a private sewer before 1 October 2011?
If the property was built before the transfer of private sewers to us on 1 October 2011, the works are legal as there would have been no need for approval before this date. There's more information here on building over a public sewer after this date.
What does a CON29DW drainage and water search contain?
The Conveyancing 29 Drainage and Water (Con29DW) is designed to identify any liability that you may incur as an owner and uncover problems that may impact on the property value and lead to expensive maintenance bills. The search contains: An analysis of the risk of...
What public health and environment services do you provide?
Our Laboratory analyses environmental and recreational samples to support businesses in meeting regulatory and public health requirements.
What kind of laboratory tests and services do you carry out?
Our laboratory carries out a wide range of chemical and microbiological tests. We analyse environmental and recreational samples to support business’ meet their regulatory and public health requirements. If you’d like to make an analytical enquiry you can use our online...
Can you test our trade effluent?
Yes. Our laboratory offers an independent analytical service for trade effluents. If you’d like to make an analytical enquiry you can use our online form