Common supply pipes
A common supply pipe feeds more than one property. If your property was once part of a group of properties originally owned by the same person it is likely that your water supply is fed to your home via a common supply pipe.
The most frustrating aspect of your home being connected to a common supply pipe is when a neighbouring property has to carry out repair work. In this instance, you and your neighbours sharing the common supply pipe will lose water supply whilst works are being completed.
How can you tell if you have a common supply pipe?
A surveyor will not automatically check the water supply mechanisms when preparing a structural survey on a property. If you are unsure, we are happy to inspect the water supply pipe that is connected to your home. Contact us on (01624) 687687.
Repair and maintenance
The owners of all the properties connected to the common supply pipe are collectively responsible for the maintenance and repair of the common supply pipe should it burst or need replacing. The diagram below shows that Manx Utilities is responsible for the section of the service pipe from the water in the road (A) to the boundary in the footpath that houses the stop tap (B).
|Manx Utilities ownership||Maintenance|
|A-B communication pipes||Yes||Manx Utilities|
|B-C common supply pipe||No||D, E, F and G customers jointly|
|C-H common supply pipe||No||E, F and G customers jointly|
|H-J common supply pipe||No||F and G customers jointly|
|C-C1, H-C2, J- C3, and J-C4 supply pipes and internal plumbing||No||D, E, F and G customers individually|
|Legislation: Water Act 1991 Schedule 5, Section 6|
Common supply pipes are likely to have been in the ground for a long time which means that they could be narrow diameter and might even be made of lead. The standard size of a supply pipe is now 25mm in diameter and a narrower supply pipe may interfere with the efficiency of the water supply to your home.
We encourage all our customers to replace any lead pipes within and outside their home. If you discover that your common supply pipe is made of lead, the best solution is to replace it with the latest pale blue medium density polyethylene pipe (MDPE) which is available from plumbers and building merchants. Once this work has been completed you can ask us to replace our part of the service pipe between the water main in the street and the stop tap, free of charge.
Please download the Application for Common Supply Pipe Replacement and return the completed form to:
PO Box 177
Isle of Man
For further information please contact us on (01624) 687687.