Assessing a fault
When you report a fault, we will give you an indication of when we will respond to the problem.
All faults are logged in our central system and prioritised according to severity, location and the number of people impacted.
The time it takes to resolve a problem can vary - especially during the summer months when the number of leaks and bursts increases due to the hot and dry weather.
We can’t get to all faults immediately. This means some precious water may be lost. We minimise this loss by getting to the biggest bursts and leaks first and carefully balancing our resources to attend to less severe faults second.
We appreciate your patience and understanding when prioritising repairs.
Responding to faults
In some cases, we will send an assessor out to determine the issue and plan repairs. The assessor may mark the area with a stake or tape to show we'll be back to fix it.
The assessor may 'throttle down' or reduce the pressure in the water main if there is a big burst or leak. This reduces water loss and minimises the risk of property damage. When this happens some customers may only have a very small amount of water available at their taps. A repair crew will be sent as soon as possible to fix the pipe.
Guide to standard response and rectification times
We have field crews working around the clock and around our network repairing major faults first and getting to smaller faults second.
For major faults, we will respond within 1-2 hours of the fault being reported to us. This includes issues like:
- A major burst resulting in excessive water loss, safety hazards, property damage or major traffic disruption on main arterials.
- A report of sewage spilling inside a building when there is no indication of an internal plumbing issue.
- Reports of sewage spills into drains, creeks or waterways.
- Loss of water supply to premises when there are no Yarra Valley Water works in the area and the meter tap is turned on correctly.
- Reports of blocked sewer pipes.
We aim to finish repairing major faults within 1-2 days. Sometimes this isn’t possible if the repair is complex. We will ensure your water and sewerage services are restored while we plan and complete repairs. This may involve running a temporary above ground water pipe or bypass sewer pumping.
For other faults, we will inspect the issue within 24-48 hours. These faults include:
- Consistent wet patch or trickle, equivalent to a tap running gently.
- Minor leaks from the water meter, hydrants or other assets.
- Replacement of faulty taps at the water meter (known as a stop tap).
We aim to repair these faults within 5-7 days. Sometimes when there is a high volume of faults, it may take us longer to respond to and repair smaller faults.
Where we investigate the fault and it relates to storm water, we will refer it to the local Council for action. If the issue relates to private water or sewer services, we will advise the owner to undertake repairs.
Why is it taking longer than expected?
Changes in the weather can play a big part in causing problems in the water and sewer network. When the weather is hot, it causes the ground surrounding water pipes to expand.
When it rains, it causes the ground to compact again.
These changes to the ground conditions can cause cracks in our pipes, which result in leaks and bursts.
This summer, there have been really hot days and really wet days. This has resulted in an increase in the number of smaller leaks and bursts.
Our assessors attend each reported leak and will prioritise our larger bursts to make sure we are using our resources as effectively as we can while keeping our bill costs affordable.