What to do if you find a leak in the property

11 Mar 2015

Discovering a leak in your home can be alarming. To prevent it from getting worse and causing serious damage, you need to shut off the water supply. But how do you do this?

Video produced by United Utilities

What to do

  • Locate your stop tap – a stop tap is commonly located under the kitchen sink as this is usually where the main water pipe comes into your home.
  • Switch it off – turn the tap clockwise to switch off the water supply.
  • Won’t move? – if you can’t turn your stop tap, don’t force it. Instead, ring a plumber and get them to come and look at it. To find a reputable plumber in your area, search TrustMark’s database of reputable tradesmen.
  • Switch it on – to reactivate the water supply, turn the tap anti-clockwise. Once you’ve done this, turn the tap back halfway, as this will reduce the chance of it seizing up.
  • Be ready – it’s worth writing the number of a reputable plumber on a sticker near the stop tap should you ever need to ring them quickly.


As a tenant, you should only undertake this sort of maintenance if you feel comfortable in what you're doing. Further damage could make you liable for the cost of a repair.

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