New or replacement water supply
This is when the pipework between your internal stopcock and our water main – usually within the road – is installed or replaced. This page will help you decide whether you need a new or replacement water connection. We’ve also included advice on appliances and lead pipework.
Our guide has more information about getting connected to our water supply network.
If you're connecting a non-household property, a retailer needs to be appointed to the site first.
Building a new property or converting an existing property into multiple units
You’ll need to apply for a new water connection. The ‘Get a quote for a water connection' dropdown below tells you about this.
Installing manifold connections can reduce the need for multiple connections, and can be cheaper than multiple individual connections. However, they’re only suitable where there’s enough space for the larger chamber and where all customer-side service pipes are laid out to the same point.
Please note that manifolds can only accommodate connections with a 25mm external (20mm internal) diameter.
Shared water supply with a neighbour
Shared water supplies used to allow enough water for each household but demand has increased due to modern appliances like power showers and dishwashers. If your supply is shared with one or more neighbours, the flow may be low when all of the homes on the supply use it at the same time. You may find you can’t turn off your supply without turning theirs off as well.
You’ll need to apply for a new water connection to separate your clean water pipework from your neighbour’s. The ‘Get a quote for a water connection’ dropdown below tells you about this.
Installing additional appliances within the property
If you’re installing new appliances or heating systems, you’ll need to ensure the flow rate is high enough to effectively use them. To increase the flow rate you can install a larger connection or, if you share your supply with a neighbour, get a separate water connection. The ‘Get a quote for a water connection’ dropdown below tells you about this.
Replacing lead pipework
If you currently have lead pipework and plan to replace it, it’s important to understand your responsibilities and the different services we can offer. The process you follow depends on the where the pipework is located.
Replacing lead within the property boundary only
If you’re replacing the pipework between the outside stop valve (usually in the footpath) and internal stop valve (within the building), we’ll need to reconnect you to the outside stop valve after your plumber has replaced the lead pipework. To arrange the reconnection, call us on 0800 316 9800 (option 1).
Replacing lead within the property boundary and road/footpath
If you plan to replace lead pipework in the road or footpath as well as within your boundary, we’ll need to do this for you. As this involves digging up the ground and re-laying your supply, we’ll need to charge a fee for our work. Get a quote for a new water connection now.
Our lead replacement scheme
If you’ve decided to replace lead pipes within your property boundary, we’ll arrange for a free replacement of any lead piping that belongs to us free of charge. We’ll replace your pipe with a pipe of the same diameter (minimum 25mm).
If you’re starting work in the next three months, please apply now.
Get a quote for a water connection
You only need a quote if you definitely want to proceed with the work. Quotes are valid for 180 calendar days and you’ll need to able to pay the upfront fees. If you just need an estimate the dropdown below tells you about this.
Due to the time we need to process applications, we can only guarantee issuing quotes for new water mains under the current financial year’s charging arrangements up until 19 February of that year. In each case, the application must be complete and require no further information.
We can’t guarantee that any applications submitted after those dates will be issued under that year’s charging arrangements.
If you’ve not begun work, you can request a requote under the following year’s charges after 31 March. Please note that a requote fee will be applicable.Apply for a new water service connection
If you prefer, you can choose your provider and ask an independent specialist contractor known as a self-lay provider to carry out the work.
When you apply you’ll be charged a non-refundable upfront fee to cover our costs for administering and preparing your quote and finalising the technical solution required.
You need about 45 minutes and the following information to hand complete the form:
- Name and contact details for the quote and invoice.
- Details of any existing water supply you’ll use for building purposes.
- The flow rate of any pumps or boosters.
- Debit or credit card details to pay the upfront fees (we don’t accept American Express).
- The address of the site where you need the work.
- The number of connections needed, and what they’ll be used for.
- A drawing showing the ideal point of connection on the boundary line. This must be free of obstructions like trees, bus stops and above or below-ground utility boxes.
- The number of different water fittings (e.g. taps, toilets, showers, appliances).
It’s not possible to save the form, so make sure you have enough time to complete everything and have all the information you need to hand. There are helpful notes throughout the form to guide you.
After you apply and pay the upfront fees, we’ll send you a quote within 14 to 28 calendar days.
Find out how we’ll use the information you provide.
if you can’t use the online form you can also apply for a quote using our PDF application form.
Estimating the cost of your new connection
Charges cover all the work we need to do to lay pipes from our water main up to your property boundary including any activities to ensure safe working in or near a road. You’ll need new water pipes installed on your land for us to connect to, so remember to budget for this separately.
An idea of costs and what you can expect to pay if we carry out the work is listed below. Costs are for making a single connection for a typical home with a 25mm or 32mm connection (external diameter).
- 70% of customers needing water connections of up to five metres in length paid between £1,500 and £2,700.
- 25% of customers needing water connections of between five and 10 metres in length paid between £2,800 and £4,300.
- 5% of customers needing water connections over 10 metres in length paid between £4,000 and £5,500.
The illustration below shows a typical example for the 70% of customers who paid between £1,500 and £2,700 for a connection less than five metres long.
These costs are based on last year’s customer payments adjusted to reflect current 2019/20 prices, include VAT and are for illustrative purposes only. We can’t provide an accurate cost without one of our experts designing your connection and providing a quote.
Overview of the connection process
We’ll carry out a survey to provide an accurate quote, including any traffic management needs and you’ll receive your quote within 14 to 28 calendar days. Either pay for the quote in full immediately or within 180 days online, by phone or by post.
Once you've paid in full, you’ll then need to arrange for the laying of your new supply pipe from the internal stop valve to the agreed point of entry. All pipes with an internal diameter of 50mm (63mm external diameter) must be chlorinated.
Please complete this template with the final verified postal address confirmed by Royal Mail and the Local Authority. This will allow us to create a billing account for your property. It will also enable us to also locate your property if the water goes off.
When laying new water pipes for us to connect to, you’ll need to comply with the Water Supply (Water Fittings) Regulations 1999. You’ll need to ensure that:
- Pipework is 750mm to 1,350mm below ground level.
- Pipework runs from the boundary to where it enters the building, with both ends of the duct sealed.
- An internal stopcock is fitted within the property.
- Pipework matches the size shown on our quote.
Reputable plumbers will be familiar with the standards required. If the plumber you use is a member of an approval scheme, they’ll have a certificate of compliance and we won’t need to inspect the work. If they’re not we’ll need to inspect and ensure the work complies with Water Regulations. To arrange a Water Regulations inspection, please call us. We'll arrange a date and carry out the inspection usually within seven days of you contacting us.
You’ll need to be present for the inspection, and your trench needs to be left open. The inspection covers the pipework from the property boundary to the inside stop valve. It normally takes about half an hour, or longer if there’s more than one connection to inspect and you’ll know immediately if you’ve passed. If you’ve failed you’ll need to contact us to arrange another inspection.
When you’ve paid your quote in full and passed your inspection, we’ll arrange a connection date. This can take up to three months because we often need to get permission before carrying out work in a road or footpath, or on privately-owned land.
The connection itself can take up to four days to complete. Please note that if we need to work on third party land we’ll also need the landowner’s permission.
When we’re done you can turn on the supply. If you're not there, we'll leave it turned off to be safe. We'll then fill in the trench and clear up the road and footpath.
If it’s a new supply, we’ll confirm the details and set up your new account. If it’s a non-household property being connected a retailer for the site needs to be appointed first.
It's your responsibility to ensure that the main from which any firefighting supply is being taken is capable of providing your firefighting requirements.
You'll need to request that a fire protection company, in accordance with advice from the local fire authority, undertakes a flow and pressure test from the nearest available fire hydrant or washout point on the main for that the supply. The test will establish if the main has the required flow and pressure for your fire protection needs.
A network service technician from Thames Water will need to be present to operate the valves – please call us on 0800 316 9800 to arrange this.
Internal-fit water meters
While it is our strategy for all internal meters to be fitted with an AMR radio to enable remote reading, all meters must still be able to be read visually. Consequently they must be fitted where they can be easily read and accessed for installation, maintenance or exchange, and must conform to health and safety requirements.
For this reason, we won’t allow any apparatus to which we may require access to be fitted in the ceiling void. There must also be no obstruction preventing the meter being read by a customer, meter reader or any other Thames Water personnel. The meters we provide will therefore need to be fitted within a common area on each floor, or within your plant room. Find out more about water meters.