Leaking water supply pipes are usually the result of wear and tear to old metal pipes in the ground. It is estimated that there are still over ten million lead supply pipes in the UK and these haven’t been used since the 1970’s, when we became more aware of the health issues involved with using lead pipes for drinking water. However, even though most insurance policies have an exclusion for damage caused gradually or by wear and tear, many buildings insurers will pick up all or part of the cost of investigation and sometimes the repair of these pipes; at least in the first instance.
This was the case when Auger inspected a leaking black alkathene pipe serving this picture postcard cottage recently. Black alkathene is a brittle type of plastic that is no longer used as it has a tendency to split, and this was the case here where there were multiple leaks in the pipe, along a private access road 120m in length; meaning that that entire pipe had to be replaced. The most cost effective way was directional drilling, as moling could not be completed due to the poor ground conditions. To the delight of the homeowner, Auger completed the work with minimal disruption to the driveway surfaces. In 2017 Auger were nominated for the Insurance Times Award for Claims Initiative of the Year by an Outsourced Partner for their methods of handling water supply pipe claims.