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Do you have lead pipes in your home?

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With the standards for the levels of lead allowed in drinking water set to change later this year, South West Water is advising customers to check their plumbing for lead pipes.

The current standard for the level of lead allowed in drinking water will reduce on 25 December 2013 in line with European water quality legislation.

South West Water has been looking at the levels of lead in drinking water across the region. Lead levels are generally very low and below the new standard. Where we have found lead in drinking water, it has generally been linked to old lead pipes left in people's homes and it is not present in the water within our wider public water supply.

The use of lead pipes for internal plumbing was stopped in 1970. If your home was built before this date, you may wish to check the type of pipes inside your home that are supplying your drinking water. 

For help in identifying the type of pipe and for further advice and information, please take a look at Lead pipes or download the leaflet on the right.

If you find lead pipes in your home, we recommend you run the tap for a short while before using it for drinking or cooking purposes and ultimately consider replacing any lead pipe you find.  Should you decide to replace any lead pipe work, the webpage above contains further useful information.

Published: 19 February 2013

For further information please contact:

Press Office

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