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Water supply - temporary and permanent


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Stupid question alert.  We have finally located our water supply (without breaking through it with a digger bucket :)) and hope to get some advice on how to run a temporary and then permanent supply.

We will be living in the current house still for a few months so need to keep a supply to the house.  We need a temporary supply directly to our caravan and outside loo for the duration of the build.  We will also need to provide access to water for the build (some sort of tap set up?).

The meter / stopcock is not at the boundary (over the other side of the road).  We have located the pipe at the boundary.  Can we turn the meter off, cut the water pipe, install some sort of three way connector in to take the supply in different directions and then, when we knock the main house down, cap off the bit of the pipe that serves the house?  Firstly, is this in any way a sensible thought?  If not, what do you suggest?  If it is, are we allowed to do it or do we have to notify Thames Water and pay them to do it?

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Buy a boundry box or 3 (known as a Toby up here)

 

Cut into your pipe under your land and use one or more.  I used three, one to feed the stand pipe for building water, one to feed the static caravan and one to feed to the house.

 

water_3.thumb.jpg.997bdcb7842452dbb2130ece2136b4e3.jpg

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First question I would ask is ....

 

Are you sure you’ve found the meter ..?? If this is on the opposite side of the road then it may not be yours ..!

 

The reason is that once past the meter the pipe work and associated ducting is the householders responsibility - and a private householder cannot be liable for something not under their land ... If you can’t locate a meter and stopcock on your land then Thames have to install one and at their cost not yours. If this is a public road too then they would need to own the service. 

 

I would get them to prove where their assets are first as you could be paying for water that is shared ....

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Thames Water has confirmed the meter is ours. It is in a boundary box (thanks for the terminology) but not on our land. It's sited across a road (no other properties near it) with one other boundary box serving a property down a private road next to our property. So we believe the pipe under the road and onto our property is our responsibility.

Can we put another boundary box or two in? Are these for where the water pipe effectively surfaces and makes a connection i.e to the caravan etc?

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Is it a private road or a public road ..?? If it’s public then either the council or Highways England would have to provide you an easement to allow your pipes under the road - there would also be liability issues if either a break in your pipe caused subsidence of the road or if someone working on the road damaged your pipe. 

 

Who owns the land where your box is ..?

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The pipes are already under the road so we are hoping not to touch them and cut the pipe within our land to put a boundary box in. The meter is on council owned land (only just though, the private road to our neighbour's house starts right there). Nothing in our deeds / searches when we bought the house mentions water pipes or easements. Thames Water didn't know where the pipes were and there are no plans. However we now know that our meter is about 3 m from our boundary, the other side of a road that is public, just).  A few years ago a car drove on top of the meter boundary boxes, causing damage and the loss of water supply (this is before our time at this house) - the council repaired it then so I think that infers they own it.

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I’ve just re-read the first post - this pipe only supplies your house ..??  If that is the case then it may be classed as a supply pipe, so it will be your responsibility. I would speak to your insurer to check that its covered under your insurance as  that could be very costly to repair. 

 

You can install your own boundary boxes, just make sure that the one to the new house has the straightest run and isn’t going off on one of the tees. 

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Yes, just supplies our house. Our assumption too is that it is the supply pipe and that it is our responsibility. We don't want to get into a situation where we need to repair it, at least not through building our house. Sounds like boundary boxes on our land are the answer to our temporary and permanent supply issues, connecting them in to the pipework from under the road? That way we don't dig up the road. Now need to check if pipework is lead. If so, I guess we might have to / want to replace the supply pipe back to the boundary box (with the meter in it) and that will involve digging up the road......everything we look at opens up a can of worms, expensive ones.....

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Last question (still probably a daft one, sorry).....if we run the water pipe in blue 32mm MDPE to our new build, can that pipe go under (or in?) the passive slab foundation (we are an MBC client) and come up in the right place or does it have to go around the foundations and into the house through a wall? Thanks

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It can go up through the slab, but will need putting in a duct to enable it to be replaced if the need arises. 

I would run it around the house and only under the slab at the point it needs to enter the building. 

You will probably bring it up in your plant room or whatever room you are having all your water and mechanical wizardry in. 

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Unless you can avoid it keep these runs as short as possible, e.g by taking them on a direct tine to nearest sensible side of the slab.

 

We just laid some extra 110 soil pipe runs form the services area out to the boundary of the slab.  I suggest that you use a swept 45° to bring them up into the service area.  You can use a multitool to cut them off flush to the slab when it's cured.   It's just a lot easier to pull ducting and stiffer pipe through these if you have a slow sweep coming up through the slab.

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