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Water & Drains

Water Supply

Clean water is supplied to most flats via two routes: a mains supply direct to each kitchen, and pipes from tanks in tank rooms on the roof which supply water to the bathrooms and hot water tanks (if there is one in your flat). The tanks are fed from the mains.

Some of the pipework (not the mains supply) is still made of lead and will need to be replaced if you ever have major works carried out on the plumbing in your flat – a factor you will have to take into account when estimating the cost of the plumbing. (For full details of regulations on building works please refer to Alterations & Renovations to Flats.) Because the water in this area is naturally hard, however, the lead should not pose a major health problem.

The water tanks were replaced in the 1990s, with new covered tanks and slide valves. The water from the tanks may, however, have stood for some time. It is therefore advisable not to use the water from bathroom taps as a source of drinking water, unless you are certain that it comes directly from the mains.

Waste Water & Drains

Nothing other than normal toilet waste and washing up water should go down your toilet, washbasin or sink. Anything which might compact or congeal should not be put down toilets, washbasins or sinks.

Blockages are very easily caused, but not so easily rectified, and can be extremely unpleasant for all. In the vast majority of cases, blockages have been caused by certain items being disposed of down toilets and sinks.

Despite manufacturers of sanitary products claiming that their products are ‘flushable’, the following items must not be disposed of down the toilet:

  • Sanitary products
  • Cotton wool balls, cotton wool pads and cotton wool buds
  • Cleansing, make up remover and baby wipes
  • Kitchen roll and thick paper tissues (other than normal toilet paper)

Similarly, foodstuffs such as the items listed below, should not be disposed of down sinks or toilets:

  • Pasta, rice and cereals (which swell)
  • Cooking oils, grease and fat (which congeal)
  • Leftover food, vegetable and fruit peel, food debris

Contractors have provided photographic evidence that all the items listed above have caused blockages to our drains. Most of these blockages could have been avoided if residents had considered the consequences before using their toilets or sinks as waste disposal units.

The Board ensures that the drains are regularly cleaned and maintained, in order to maintain the life support systems of Surbiton Court. Such blockages are extremely unpleasant and inconvenient, as well as causing unnecessary additional expenditure.

Please therefore pause to consider before disposing of inappropriate items down sinks and toilets. Remember – prevention is better than cure.

Leaks & Overflows

If you notice any dripping or leaking overflows, flooding, or blocked drains please email as soon as possible.

If you plan to be away for longer than a few days, please email emergency contact numbers and details of keyholders to This will help to minimize any damage from leaks, should they occur, to both your and your neighbours’ flats

This page last updated 01 June 2016
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