Lead pipes (new old house content)

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  • Lead pipes (new old house content)
  • gatecrasher
    Member

    We are currently in the realms of buying a house. The homebuyers
    report says that there is some lead piping in use, should I be
    worried?

    richc
    Member

    depends, is it in a hard or soft water area?

    You can also ask the water board to do a test and they will tell you how much lead is making it into the water, and provide recommendations on if it should be replaced or not.

    If it needs to be replaced its going to cost a fair bit, as you will need to replace all the pipes in the house and take floorboards/carpet/etc up, which might not go back down in a decent state, plus you will need to dig back to the waterboard’s pipe (which isn’t necessarily where the meter is) and ground work can work out to be very expensive, but it does depend on how rocky it is, and density of other underground pipework.

    johndoh
    Member

    Do you know how much and where the pipes are?

    Our old house had lead leading up to the house but none inside. We weren’t on a meter so we just ran the water for a few minutes every morning to get rid of any that had been standing in the lead overnight. We also used a Brita filter, especially for the kids drinks.

    gatecrasher
    Member

    Thanks for the replies, the report does not specify how much there is.
    It looks like we are going to have to investigate further. I expected
    the response to be it would be fine. Its a good idea about water board
    test,thanks

    boxfish
    Member

    I was told that, on old lead pipes, the surface oxidises and massively reduces the amount of lead in the water. Not sure how true this is.

    We recently replaced the lead water main in our place while doing other works. The water company paid for all work outside the boundary of the property, while we paid for all works inside the boundary (excavation, connection of new pipe). We just had to make sure that the plumber was on-site when the water company turned up to swap the supply. They also inspected the excavation and positioning of the new pipe to make sure it complied with regulations).

    Premier Icon scaredypants
    Subscriber

    go back and reintroduce yourself to the current residents

    if they don’t know who you are, there’s too much lead in the water

    Premier Icon kcal
    Subscriber

    We found a lead supply pipe to our house (after the move in, when digging a trench for outside power cable).

    Plumbers ran plastic water pipe from house to outside property (I did the digging to specified depth), water board reconnected to new supply box with no contribution from us.

    Happy to have ditched the lead supply pipe.

    rob2
    Member

    There is a new lead standard coming in at the end of the year which means many water companies will dose the water to reduce lead take up.

    They usually dose with orthophosphate which basically creates a protective film in the pipe.

    Personally if you are a long way from the road I’d do it, or it’s cheap I’d do it, if not I wouldn’t bother.

    You’ll be drinking loads of ibuprofen derivatives at the minute and a dilute amount of contraceptive pill so best to lose your memory!*

    *depending on where your water comes from

    Premier Icon Sandwich
    Subscriber

    When ours went pop ( last owner had rendered the pipe with hard mortar causing it to fatigue fracture) it cost £400 for a new main to the house. I plumbed the bit inside the house which the contractors tested for me while they waited for EDF. ( The plumbers bruised the supply cable).

    Pieface
    Member

    We’re in the same situation and think the health issues are marginal. After all how do we know that HBPE is any safer? We are thinking of doing it though as a replacement pipe will be bigger and give a better water supply

    matthewlhome
    Member

    Lead is biggest risk to young children developing.i’d be tempted to look at the property / ask what the lead there actually consists of.

    As mentioned, water company will do a test upon request.

    matthewlhome
    Member

    This leaflet gives some more info. Lead pipes info

    richc
    Member

    When I got my lead report it stated the current level (it was well under) and new level (it was just over) and I had to make a choice, between living with it or digging a 60 meter trench through limestone, boundary wall, and access lane down to 1 meter to get it to the side of a busy road.

    Hence I have copper pipes in the house, and the existing Victorian lead pipe is still in place outside 🙂

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