Customers save hundreds of thousands of litres of water by fixing leaks during lockdown

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RESOURCEFUL customers have helped save thousands of litres of water during lockdown by fixing their leaky loos and dripping taps. 

With much of the country following Government advice to stay at home, customers across London and the Thames Valley have been making the most of their time inside to carry out DIY repairs. 

Smart meter data shows up to 200,000 litres of water a day has been saved – the equivalent of more than half a million cups of tea – as customers roll up their sleeves and get to work. 

One in 20 homes across the Thames Water region has a continually flowing or leaking loo, which can drip between 200 and 400 litres of water every day. 

Andrew Tucker, Thames Water’s water efficiency manager, commented on the news: “I’m delighted so many of our customers have showed the initiative and used the time during lockdown to fix pesky leaks. 

“It’s important that each one of us uses water wisely to ensure we can continue to provide a safe supply in the future. 

“However, not everyone will want to tackle these jobs themselves and Thames Water can offer advice for anyone who needs help with a repair.” 

Finding and fixing leaks remains one of the company’s biggest priorities, and it has been continuing with its wide range of activities to reduce leakage and bring its backlog of repairs to water pipes down to the lowest level in a decade. 

Nicci Russell, managing director of water efficiency organisation Waterwise, added: “We’re all more aware than ever of the value of water at the moment as it’s saving lives. 

“It’s really great that customers are translating this awareness into DIY fixes of leaky loos, which, if not tackled, can use the same amount of water as if a second family moved in. 

Overall we’re using more water in our homes currently, as we’re spending most of our time there, so these customer actions are incredibly helpful to make the water we do have go further.” 

Thames Water has been spending over £1 million a day on its underground network to help reduce leakage and is employing a range of innovative measures to help detect and fix leaks in its network, including satellite surveys and temperature analysis, devices installed in large pipes to monitor the water flow and even a sniffer dog which can detect the small amounts of chlorine in drinking water.