One of the most common questions we receive from our customers is:
Who is responsible for the main water line if it breaks or has a problem?
The answer is one many don’t expect: you are.
As a homeowner, you are responsible for the water main pipe that begins at the curb of your property, and runs into your home. This is the pipe that connects the municipal water supply to your home’s plumbing system. Without it, you wouldn’t have a fresh stream of water to use any time of the day. Its what gives your home its running water to drink, cook, shower, clean, and of course so much more.
In some cases, a main water line break can cause severe damage, and you’ll know instantly you have a problem. If your basement begins to flood, or you have a instant fountain in your front lawn as the water rises up out of your landscaping, you know you have a problem.
But in some cases the problem isn’t as big or as noticeable … for awhile. This is where the problem becomes costly. This is where it takes a little investigation to determine where the source truly is. And in many cases, the best place to start is with your water bill.
The longer you live in your home, the more accustomed you become to what the monthly charge is. Here in Colorado, it will be higher in July and lower in January, yet you still have an average for what you know it should be. When you receive an unexpected surprise and your water bill increases without a reasonable explanation, this is when a little more investigation is needed. Check your home for other problems.
- Is the water pressure low or are certain areas of your home or without water altogether?
- Is the water changing colors, becoming discolored or have a murky look to it?
- Do you notice excessive amounts of water in your yard? Puddles that shouldn’t be there?
- Walk around your yard – are there any visible sink holes?
- Do you hear the sound of running water in your basement when water is not in use in the home?
There are many reasons a water main line will break. In many cases, its simply age. If you live in an older home and the pipes have been in place for decades, age can cause deterioration over time. The EPA estimates that the average water main has a useful life of around 47 years.
It can also break depending on the material of the pipe. Older homes often have pipes made from clay, steel or tile, which are more prone to deterioration. Other variables include overgrown tree roots, sudden shifts in the weather, or even movement in the earth from ground settling or small tremors from earthquakes.
While any of these things can cause a disruption in your service, the good news is its fixable immediately by one of our skilled technicians. The best time to start is when you think you may have a problem – don’t wait until it escalates, causing even more damage to your property.