Who is Responsible for Manhole Covers?

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The drainage system of a property can be complex and difficult to understand. Drainage systems are designed to operate efficiently for years, however from time to time issues can occur. Regular drain maintenance is an integral part of the upkeep of any property, blocked drains if not dealt with immediately can threaten the very structure of your home. However, the responsibility for drain maintenance doesn’t always fall upon the homeowner. There are a number of factors that will ultimately determine who is responsible for the upkeep of your drainage system including the manhole covers. As a homeowner it is important that you get to know which areas of your drainage system are your responsibility when it comes to maintenance and drain repair to avoid unnecessary expense. In this article we are going to have a look at where the responsibility lies should a problems arise and what steps you need to take to resolve the issue.

Who is Responsible for Manhole CoversAs The Homeowner What am I Responsible For?

The laws governing drain ownership were rather ambiguous in earlier times. Homeowners typically had to take care of their lateral drains and all related manhole covers, commonly known as the pipes that carry wastewater out to the main sewer, in addition to paying to maintain the drains on their own property.

In the present, the law makes far more sense. Due to the Private Sewers Transfer Regulations, which became effective in the UK in October 2011, you are only required to maintain the drains and manhole covers that are physically connected to your property and are located within your boundary lines.

Any plumbing that exits your property boundary, joins the main sewer line, or connects your drains to a neighbouring drainage system is not your responsibility. That’s all there is to it.
It is not your responsibility to make the repairs or pay for them if there are issues with these components of your drainage network, whether they are brought on by obstructions, root intrusion, inadequate maintenance, or normal wear and tear.

Important Information on The Wider Sewerage System and Public Amenities

The local water provider maintains all mainline sewers. However, if a sewerage provider hasn’t yet taken over the sewer that services your property, you’ll be responsible for maintaining it. We regret that it is one of the drawbacks of living off the grid. Manhole and drain covers that can be seen on our streets, pavements, parks, and other public spaces are also the responsibility of the local water companies and/or sewage authority.

How do I Determine Whether the Responsibility is Mine, My Neighbours or the Water Company

The best course of action is to call our knowledgeable drainage professionals if you’re certain that the problematic drain is located outside your property but are unsure of who needs to take responsibility for getting it fixed. One of our engineers will come to your property to do an on-site CCTV drainage survey. This will not only enable them to locate the issue precisely within the network and determine whose purview it falls under, but also assist them in identifying it. Conveniently, we can also perform mainline sewer inspections for your water company if necessary.

What is the Next Step

It makes sense that you would want to address any leftover drainage problems as soon as possible. However, if you’re not the one ultimately responsible for the problem, this may be challenging. If your neighbour has a blocked drain on their property and is refusing to get it fixed, you can get in touch with your local council office and request that they issue an enforcement notice. Even if it’s a last resort, it works!

You must get in touch with the water company, in charge of providing water and water recycling services to all the households and businesses in your region, if your sewer or lateral drain is the problem. They will examine the location themselves, evaluate the situation, and take control.

Hopefully the information contained in this article will provide you with some clarity. Highlighting what is and what isn’t your responsibility when it comes to maintaining your drains and associated manhole covers. If you are looking for manhole cover replacement, contact Totally Blocked LTD today and see how we can help you.

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