We live in an advanced economy so we make certain assumptions about our quality of life and what we can expect. One of these things is clean, safe drinking water. When we think of drinking water that’s unsafe we think of developing countries, or of certain holiday locations. We don’t consider it to be something closer to home, or in fact actually in the home. However, contaminated drinking water from lead pipes can be a problem in the UK and it does carry with it certain health risks.
If you live in a house that was built before 1970 you might have a lead water supply pipe. The supply pipe carries water into your home from the mains, and you might also have internal lead pipework or lead-based pipe joints inside your home. If your home does have lead pipes this doesn’t necessarily mean that your water’s contaminated in any way, but lead pipe replacement is a way of making sure that you can’t get ill from drinking water from your own taps.
Lead poisoning is not something that shows immediate symptoms, it comes from a build up of lead from repeated exposures to small quantities. Children and pregnant women are more susceptible to short-term exposure. Symptoms include abdominal pain, headaches, fatigue and loss of appetite.
There are ways of checking is you have lead pipes: look at the pipes behind or in kitchen cupboards find the point where they lead to the kitchen tap: if they appear dull grey in colour or are soft (their surface is easily marked with a knife) they are highly likely to be made of lead. If you’re not sure, you should get someone qualified to look at the pipework.
We’d recommend you have lead pipe replacement carried out to give you piece of mind. Replacing lead pipes is something we do professionally to ensure that your home is safe, with the best possible water supply for your family.