Central heating overflow pipe dripping: Overflow Pipe Leaking? How to fix it

Overflow Pipe Leaking? How to fix it

What is an Overflow Pipe?

An overflow pipe extends from the water storage tank to prevent water from leaking into the house area/rooms. The overflow pipe is the most important feature in your home’s plumbing system. Overflow Pipe Leaking happens when the tank or cistern fills up to a level more than it should, causing the excess water to flow down into the overflow pipe.

Some common components that have an overflow pipe in your home are:

  •   Toilet Cistern
  •   Cold water feed and expansion tank
  •   Central heating feed and expansion tank
  •   Copper cylinder
  •   Combination boiler
  •   Sinks, basins, and bathtubs

The toilet cistern, Cold water feed and expansion tank, Central heating feed and expansion tank, and the combination boilers overflow outside. The expansion pipe on the copper cylinder flows down into the cold water feed and expansion tank, and the one on the basin and bath flows into the draining sink.

Why is the Overflow Pipe Leaking?

One of the most common reasons that might cause overflow pipe leaking is a problem with a float valve. The float valve is a device that controls water level; it consists of a plastic/metal arm along with a plastic ball at the end of the arm that floats in the water. Float valves are found in toilet cisterns, expansion tanks, cold water tanks, and central heating feed.

This float valve keeps moving up and down along with the water level to switch on and switch off the cold water feed. The extent of the water level in the tank should be an inch below the overflow pipe. If the float valve does not operate correctly, the cold water feed may not be properly switched off, thus causing excess water overflow.

However, it is considered an alarming situation if the overflow pipe leaks- even if it’s a very small leak. Continuous water leaks might result in water overflow and you might have to switch off the entire plumbing system. Read below to find our simple step by step guide that will help you find where the leak is and what to do if you see the water leaking from an overflow pipe just so that you can quickly deal with the situation:

Identify Which Cistern/ Water Tank Is Overflowing

If the leaking pipe is seen on the ground or first floor, it might be your bathroom overflow pipe dripping and coming from the toilet cistern. But if it is at the loft level and is protruding out, then water might be coming from the expansion tank and the central heating feed.

Check the float valve & washer

Sometimes, if the water keeps continuously running into the tank, the float valve might get stuck. Check on the float valve, release it if it is seen stuck, and see if it repeats its normal function. Also, check on the ball to see if it’s punctured. If you find problems with the float valve and the ball, it needs to be replaced, and if everything is good, but still the water keeps leaking, then the washer might be worn out and needs to be replaced.

Turn Off Water Feed & Drain the Water

To work, first, you need to stop the flow of new water into the tank and drain it completely.

  •   Use the isolation valve to turn the water feed off on a toilet cistern.
  •   Use a flat head screwdriver to turn the screw clockwise and flush the toilet to drain the water.
  •   At the stopcock, turn off the mains to stop the water feeding into either of the water tanks.
  •   You could turn on your bathroom taps to drain it.
  •   See that the water level is below the area you need to work on.

Check water pressure

Leaky pipes are majorly the effect of increased water pressure. The tube may leak if the pressure exceeds the pipe’s pressure handling capacity. In addition, the water valve, which checks the pressure and the flow of water through the overflow pipe, might have loosened due to continuous water flow with increased pressure. Sometimes, the pipe might also face leakage due to damages.

Toilet Overflow Pipe Leaking

The toilet overflow pipe ends outside the house, and if the water flow within the tank or cistern doesn’t stop, it will overflow. This can be fixed in multiple ways:

  •   Check if the float valve is freely moving: There are chances that the float valve might be twisted within the valve chain.
  •   Regulate the float valve: Control the extent of the float valve by bending the arm or adjusting the screws to shut the water system off.
  •   Check water pressure: The overflow pipe may leak due to increased pressure in the water flow within the pipe. The water pressure can be checked in the isolation valve and must be closed to manage the flow.
  •   Replace the float valve or washer: There might be a damaged valve or washer if the water leakage does not stop after the remedial trials. If this is the case, the washer/ valve needs to be replaced.

Cold Water Feed and Expansion Tank Overflow Pipe Leaking

This cold water feed and expansion tank overflow pipe extend through the bigger water cistern to your house’s exterior. Water flows to the sinks from the tank. In the case of leakage in any of the system’s overflow pipes, it is because of the below reasons:

  •   The tank’s water inlet is not turning off.

If you find a constant drip of water inside the water feed tank, try to adjust/ replace the float valve or the washer.

  •   Water is being pressured back into the outlet pipe.

If the pipes, float valves, and washers seem to work fine, then the sole reason for the leakage is that the water is pushed back towards the leak through the outlet pipe. This issue could be solved by calling in a safe gas expert.

Call a Gas Safe Technician.

Central Heating Feed and Expansion Tank Overflow

 The central heating feed and expansion tank overflow pipe goes from your water tank in your loft to the outside of the house. Water to the central heating system of the house is provided by the feed and if the overflow pipe of the system is leaking, the two possible reasons are:

  •   The water feed going into the tank is not switching off

As soon as you see constant dripping of water into the tank, ensure that both the float valve is not damaged or worn out. If you find any such issues of damage, then go ahead and replace the float valve/ washer.

  •   A problem with your hot water cylinder

If you see your cold water feed working fine and your float valve and washer is also undamaged, then the only issue would be with your hot water cylinder.


Boiler Overflow Pipe Leaking

Boilers have a pipe consisting of a pressure relief valve similar to an overflow pipe. Under too much water pressure in the system, this valve releases water. Also, this pipe in the boiler has its end at the outside of your house and prevents any flooding. This valve only flows when there is a severe problem in the system, so if it is seen leaking, it is important to take notice of the issue immediately.

Note: Pressure Valve Pipes and Condense Pipes are two different. Hot water flows through the condensed pipes when the central heating system is turned on.

If your boiler is leaking water from an overflow pipe then there is excess pressure to the system or due to an issue in the pressure valve. In both cases, it is recommended to call in professionals.

Call a Boiler Repair Engineer

Overflow from Kitchen Sink

The overflow pipe of the sink is placed just below the sink and has its opening down the drain. This pipe stops your sink from overflowing. Hence, it would be difficult for you to point out if there is an issue with the sink overflow pipe. However, the problems and indications surface with your sinks or baths. But in case you spot any issue with the drain, then the simple solution is to unclog it and allow the sink to drain off.

Get a Plumbing and Drainage Cover

With all the above information, we have kept you covered with every issue that might happen with the water supply pipes and the why’s and how’s of it. Yet a blocked drain or a burst pipe will likely slow down anyone. So take out Smart Cover’s Plumbing and Drainage Coverto keep yourself up from unexpected situations.

At Smart Cover, we provide home emergency insurance coverage and for a vast range of home appliance products with a vision to be protective of our customer’s needs and emergency situation. In addition, we provide professional service, competitive premium rates and streamlined claims settlement processes.

Smart Cover’s plumbing & drainage insurance scheme includes:

  •   Emergencies related to the internal drainage system.
  •   Collapse/ Blockage/ Leak of the external water supply pipe.

Our engineers work around the clock on various household repair emergencies throughout the year. However, a plumbing and drainage breakdown can occur at any time, and we want you to be secure in knowing that you’re covered for repair costs. So reach out to Smart Cover’s plumbing & drainage insurance, and the solution is just a call away.

How to Stop Your Overflow Pipe Leaking

Jump to:

  • What is an overflow pipe?
  • What to do if your overflow pipe is leaking
  • Toilet overflow pipe leaking
  • Cold water feed and expansion tank overflow pipe leak
  • Overflow from central heating feed and expansion tank
  • Overflow from a copper cylinder
  • Boiler overflow pipe
  • Sink overflow pipe
  • Why is my overflow pipe dripping outside?

What is an overflow pipe?

An overflow pipe leads from a water storage tank or cistern inside your home to the outside. They’re a vital part of your home’s plumbing system. If the water in the tank or cistern fills up to a higher level than it should, the excess water flows down through the overflow pipe and runs outside, rather than leaking into your home.

Some of the most common components in your home that require an overflow pipe are:

  • Toilet cistern
  • Cold water feed and expansion tank
  • Central heating feed and expansion tank
  • Combination boiler
  • Copper cylinder
  • Sinks, basins and baths

Of these common components, the first four overflow to the outside of your house. The overflow pipe (also known as the expansion/vent pipe) on a copper cylinder flows into the cold-water feed and expansion tank, and the overflow on basins and baths feed into the drain.

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Why is my overflow pipe leaking?

When an overflow pipe is dripping or running with water, it may be due to a problem with a float valve. Float valves are found in toilet cisterns, cold water tanks, and central heating feed and expansion tanks. It’s a device that controls the water level, and consists of a metal or plastic arm with a floating plastic ball on the end.

When the water in the tank is used, the ball float drops with the water level. This movement turns the cold-water feed on so the tank refills. As the water level rises and the tank fills up, the ball rises to switch the water feed off again.

The maximum water level in the tank should be about one inch below the overflow pipe. If the float valve doesn’t operate properly, the cold-water feed may not fully switch off, causing the water level to continue to rise above the overflow.

If you’re unsure whether it’s an overflow pipe that’s leaking, follow our handy guide on how to diagnose leaky pipes. We can help you find the problem quickly and easily:

1. Identify which water tank or cistern is overflowing

If the leaking pipe is at ground or first-floor level, then it’s likely to be your bathroom overflow pipe dripping water from the toilet cistern. However, if it’s at loft level and protrudes from the eaves of the roof, then it could be coming from your cold-water or central heating feed and expansion tank.

Check the water level in each of these tanks if you’re still unsure. If the water level is close to the overflow – or higher than the ring of limescale that indicates its usual level – then you’ve found the culprit.

Top tip: If there’s only a small amount of water dripping into your cistern or tank, it may take hours for it to fill above the overflow level. Normal water usage during the day could keep the level low enough to disguise the leak, so you may only notice it early in the morning.

2. Check the float valve

If water is running continuously into the tank, the float valve could be stuck in an open position. Lift it up to release it and check nothing is stopping it from moving freely. If it’s moving with no problems, check the plastic ball isn’t punctured and filled with water, in which case, it will need to be replaced.

If neither of these are the problem, and the water still doesn’t shut off, the washer may be worn and in need of replacement.

3. Turn off the water feed and drain the water

If you’ve identified that there’s a problem with your float valve, you’ll need to replace it or replace the washer as mentioned above. First, you’ll need to stop the flow of new water into the tank and drain it so you can work.

  1. To turn the water feed off on a toilet cistern, use the isolation valve – this is a valve located on the water pipe that leads into the cistern
  2. Use a flat head screwdriver to turn the screw a quarter turn clockwise
  3. Flush the toilet to drain the water
  4. Stop the water feed into either of the water tanks by turning off the main water supply at the stopcock
  5. Drain the water by turning on your bathroom taps, just enough so that the water level is below the area you need to work on

Your next steps will depend on what’s leaking and why.

Toilet overflow pipe leaking

The toilet overflow pipe runs from your toilet cistern to the outside of your house. It will be made of either plastic, copper or lead and will usually lead out through the wall directly behind the toilet.

If your toilet overflow pipe is leaking outside, it’s because the water feed into the cistern isn’t switching off. There are several possible fixes for this:

  • Check the float valve isn’t stuck (as described above): It could also be tangled up in the chain that pulls open the flapper valve when you flush.
  • Adjust the position of the float: The height required for the ball to shut the water feed off may be set too high. If the arm is metal, try lowering the ball height by bending the arm down. If it’s plastic, you’ll find an adjustment screw at the top of the arm. Turn it slightly to move the position of the float.
  • Check the water feed pressure: The overflow pipe could be leaking because the pressure of the water coming into the tank is too high. Use the isolation valve (see steps 1 and 2 above) to reduce the flow of water.
  • Replace the washer in the float valve: If the water feed still isn’t completely shutting off once the cistern is full, try changing the washer. First, turn off the water supply and drain the cistern (as described in step 5 above). Take the float valve apart and remove the old washer. Take the old washer to a DIY store when you get the replacement to ensure you get the right size. Put the new washer in and put the float valve back in place.
  • Replace the float valve: If the float valve is damaged or there’s a puncture in the plastic ball, it will need to be replaced. Again, shut the water supply off and drain the cistern (as described in step 5 above). Remove the float valve and take it to a DIY store when you get the replacement to ensure you get the right size. You can now install the new float valve.

Cold water feed and expansion tank overflow pipe

The cold water feed and expansion tank overflow pipe runs from the large water tank in your loft to the outside of your house. It will be made of either plastic, copper or lead and usually leads out through the eaves and soffits. The tank supplies your bath and basin taps and your hot water cylinder with water.

If your cold water feed and expansion tank overflow pipe is leaking, there are two possible causes:

1. The water feed into the tank isn’t switching off

Look inside the tank. If you can see water constantly running or dripping from the water feed, check if the float valve is stuck. As and if needed, adjust the position of the float, replace the washer or replace the float valve.

2. Water is being pushed back up the outlet pipes

If your float valve is working fine, and the cold water feed to the tank switches off when it should, then excess water can only be coming back up through the outlet pipes. These are the pipes that feed water into your taps and water cylinder.

This problem is caused by a faulty mixer shower or tap that’s plumbed into the mains water feed. When you use the mixer, the high-pressure cold mains water pushes the low-pressure hot water back up the pipes into the cold water tank, causing the tank to overfill. If this is the case, you may notice that the overflow pipe only leaks when you use the faulty tap or shower.

For this problem, it’s best to call out a professional plumber who can diagnose the problem and fix it for you.

Overflow from central heating feed and expansion tank

The central heating feed and expansion tank overflow pipe runs from the small water tank in your loft to the outside of your house. It will be made of either plastic, copper or lead and usually leads out through the eaves and soffits. The tank supplies your heating system and allows water to expand safely within the system when it’s heated.

If your central heating feed and expansion tank overflow pipe is leaking, there are two possible causes:

1. The water feed into the tank isn’t switching off

When you look inside the tank, can you see water constantly running or dripping from the water feed? If so, ensure that the float valve isn’t stuck or doesn’t need adjusting. Alternatively it may be that the washer or whole float valve needs replacing.

2. There is a problem with your hot water cylinder

If your float valve is working fine, and the cold water feed to the tank switches off when it should, then the only other cause is a problem with your hot water cylinder. Read the next section to find out more.

Overflow from a copper cylinder

The overflow (also called the expansion/vent pipe) from a copper cylinder runs into the cold water feed and expansion tank in your loft. This pipe allows for the water in the cylinder to expand when it’s heated.

There are two possible reasons for your copper cylinder to be causing an overflow pipe to leak:

1. The temperature on your thermostat is too high

It’s normal for the overflow pipe on a copper cylinder to drip when your water is heating. But if you find it’s running with water and causing your tank to overflow, then your water could be getting too hot. To fix this, simply adjust the temperature on your thermostat down a little.

2. The coil inside the copper cylinder is perforated

Inside the copper cylinder, there’s a coil that’s supplied with hot water from the boiler. The rest of the copper cylinder is supplied with cold water from the cold water storage tank.

An overflow problem occurs when there is a perforation in the coil, and the water inside it leaks out into the main cylinder. When this happens, the domestic water (that supplies your cold taps and toilets) and the central heating water (that supplies your hot taps, boiler and radiators) mix.

Gravity tries to equalise the water level between the cold water feed and expansion tank and the central heating feed and expansion tank – and since the central heating tank has a lower water level to start with, it’s usually this tank that fills above its normal level and overflows.

The only solution for this problem is to replace the copper cylinder. It’s best to call out a professional plumber who can carry out the work for you.

Boiler overflow pipe

Combination boilers have a pipe that’s similar to an overflow pipe, called a pressure relief valve. This valve releases water if the system builds up too much pressure. The pipe is copper and runs from the boiler to the outside of your house, and only releases water if there’s a problem.

Be careful not to confuse the pressure release valve with the condense pipe. The condense pipe is plastic and is designed to drip when your central heating is turned on or when you’re running hot water. You may only see one external pipe, as sometimes the condense pipe is run internally into a waste pipe.

Your boiler’s overflow pipe may leak water if:

  • The boiler has built up too much pressure due to the expansion vessel failing or losing its charge
  • The pressure relief valve is not seated correctly, causing water to pass by it

For safety reasons, it’s best to call out a Gas Safe registered engineer who can come and fix this problem for you.

To protect your boiler from problems in future, follow these seven steps to help avoid a boiler breakdown.

Sink overflow pipe

The overflow on a sink is a small opening that’s found on the back of the sink, just below the rim and is connected to a pipe that leads down into the drain. These overflows are found in bathroom basins, baths and kitchen sinks, and help to stop your sink overflowing if you leave the tap running when the plug is in.

Unlike other overflows, you will see the problem in the sink itself rather than notice a dripping overflow pipe outside your house.

The simple solution to an overflowing sink is to pull the plug out and allow the bowl to drain.

Overflow pipe dripping outside

In summary, if you see an overflow pipe leaking outside, the likely cause is an overflowing toilet cistern, cold water or central heating feed and expansion tank. The issue could also be your boiler overflow pipe dripping due to a faulty combination boiler.

But remember, if your cold water or central heating feed and expansion tank is overflowing, it could be your copper cylinder that’s the cause, since these are connected.

If a basin, bath, or kitchen sink overflow pipe is leaking, you won’t see this outside as these pipes lead directly down the drain.

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Pipes are flowing what to do?

During operation, even the highest quality pipes that are part of the plumbing system can become unusable and begin to leak. There are many reasons for this, for example, as a result of the accumulation of condensate on the surface of the pipe, it can lead to the pipe becoming rusty. It is also important to know that salt deposits can form on the inner walls of the pipe, which gradually destroy the surface, which can also cause damage to the pipe. There are many more reasons why pipes can leak. Now let’s figure out what to do if the pipe starts to leak.

Pipes are leaking what to do: causes and troubleshooting

Leaks in the areas of the threaded connection can be caused not only by a long service life, but also by mechanical stress. Pipes can be damaged as a result of careless handling, for example, a garden tool can be hung on a pipe or a heavy object can simply fall on it, as a result of which the connection area can easily be damaged. In addition, a leak can be caused by a sudden increase in pressure in the plumbing system.

So, a leak has been detected, it is necessary to take measures to eliminate it. The first thing to do is turn off the water supply. After that, you can take corrective action. You can do this yourself using improvised materials, or you can call a specialist who will come and fix the problem using special tools and fixtures. In the latter case, you can be sure that the work is done, it will be professional and of high quality. However, if a decision is made to cope on our own, then we immediately determine the place of the leak and only after that we start work. So, if a metal pipe gave a leak, then it can be eliminated using a piece of rubber and a metal clamp. The pipe is wrapped with rubber in the problem area, after which the clamp is put on and tightened. You can eliminate a leak in a threaded connection using cold welding, which is applied to the surface of the pipe. It is important to note that the area to be treated must be cleaned and dried.

A pipe is leaking, how to repair it without asking the help of a master?

If rust or a microcrack forms on the surface of the pipe, then it will be possible to completely eliminate the malfunction by completely replacing the pipe. Of course, it is possible to repair such a site by temporarily imposing a special bandage on it. But in this way it will not be possible to solve the problem for a long time, and anyway, in the near future, it may need a major overhaul.

If it is necessary to repair the pipe, but the use of welding is not desirable, this can be done by replacing a piece from one threaded connection to another. Before starting work, the water is shut off and only after that the problem area is cut out from the pipeline system with the help of a grinder. After that, the threaded connection is unscrewed and carefully protected with a metal brush.

It is important to note that when disconnecting a threaded connection, the pipe behind it must remain stationary. Therefore, it must be clamped with an adjustable wrench and held in the opposite direction from the direction of unscrewing the thread.

Next, a new coupling is screwed on and the required length of pipe is measured. It is necessary to cut the pipe with a pipe cutter, after which the edge is thoroughly cleaned of burrs. The thread on the pipe can be applied with a screw clamp, it is important to note that periodically the place where the thread is applied should be lubricated with engine oil.

Small cuts should be made across the threads to increase the strength of the thread. It is necessary to start winding the material on the thread from the second turn, after which it should be lubricated with grease or other sealing grease.

The new pipe is then connected to the coupling and screwed onto the old pipe section. It is important to ensure that during installation the new section is constantly in a strictly horizontal position relative to the old pipe section. At the last stage, the place of the threaded connection is tightened with a union nut pre-installed on the pipe.

Fixing a leak in a pipe: do it yourself

If the pipe has a small leak, you can fix it yourself using a piece of rubber. First of all, the water supply is shut off, after that a piece of rubber is taken, the width of which should be sufficient to completely block the leak and the pipe is wrapped around the gust. The rubber wound on the pipe can be fixed on both sides with copper wire or special clamps. In the latter case, the connection will be more reliable. For greater reliability, a bandage can be wound over the rubber after pretreating it in a cement mortar.

Minor leaks can be repaired quickly and easily with just a bandage and plain salt. This method is advantageous to use if the pipe is leaking at the junctions. All that is required is to soak the bandage in saline solution and wrap it around the pipe. However, it is important to note that the above methods for eliminating leaks, although effective, are short-lived and you still need to invite a master who will fix the problem using special materials, so that the plumbing system will gain reliability and stability in operation.

The heating pipe burst – who is to blame and what to do?

The classic call at the door, the cry: “You flood us!” or a fountain of water right in the entrance – unpleasant, but often inevitable features of Russian home ownership. There is nothing good in ankle-deep water. But the further consequences of a breakthrough in heating pipes can spoil your mood and hit your budget much more seriously.

But forewarned is forearmed! Let’s figure out what to do, who is to blame and “where to run” in the event of a flood.

Causes of a pipe break

There are few of them, but each of them depends on the further actions of the victims and the search for the culprit.

• Poor condition of communications, dilapidated house
• Faulty condition of heating devices and valves
• Incorrect installation and connection of heating devices, lack of professional sealant
• Defective equipment, pipes
• Water hammer due to a sharp increase in pressure

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It is also important to consider the time of year when the breakthrough occurred.

– If this is the heating season, then there may be several reasons for the breakthrough, it all depends on the specific case. The reason is established based on the results of the commission check and examination.

– If the accident occurred outside the heating season, then there can be no options. The reason for the pipe break is incorrect hydraulic testing. Intra-house networks were not disconnected from the mains, and since the coolant is supplied under high pressure, pipes or radiators simply could not withstand the pressure. AT 90% of cases is a human factor, and the fault lies with the management company or the heat point.


Accident localization is a matter of principle. This is understandable even without studying the regulatory and legislative framework. There can be two options here:

– Intra-house accident.

– Internal accident.

The difference is clear even intuitively. Supply and return pipes, valves, fittings, a pump, pressure sensors – all this applies to common house property.

That is, to the area of ​​direct responsibility of the management company. If a breakthrough happened in the basement or entrance, deal with this exclusively by your management company.

But if the flood occurs directly in the apartment, the tenant should act quickly and clearly.

Your actions

1. Determine the location of the breakthrough. The problem may be in your neighbors, and living several floors above. If the “heroes of the occasion” are in touch or even at home, you can greatly reduce losses and future problems.

2. At the same time, report the pipe break to the management company. And immediately – to the city emergency service, especially if boiling water pours from the pipe (from the ceiling). For this, always keep the UK and emergency numbers at hand.

In Moscow, you can use the “House of Moscow” service, which contains up-to-date information about the maintenance of apartment buildings – https://dom.mos.ru. There is a heading on the areas of responsibility of the State Budgetary Institution, telephone numbers of the round-the-clock dispatcher’s office and other useful information.

But it’s better, again, to “google” contacts in advance and write them down.

3. Record everything on your phone’s camera – the place of the pipe rupture, the actions of specialists, in general, everything that happens.

4. Do not stop the leak yourself and do not rush to clean up the consequences. This is dangerous, because during the heating season, the water temperature in the pipes exceeds 55 °C. Not enough to get burns.

5. When the team has repaired the accident, carefully record the damage to property. Compensation for the bay of the apartment depends on this.

First, you fix the losses yourself, and then call a commission from the management company, which must inspect the object within 3 days and issue an inspection certificate. You have the right to invite independent experts (by paying for their services) to assess the damage. An expert assessment will become evidence of material claims against the culprit of the accidents during the trial.

Who is to blame?

According to article 15 of the Civil Code, the victim has the right to compensation for losses (and even lost benefits).

But to determine the person through whose fault these losses occurred is the most difficult stage.

Decree of the Government of the Russian Federation No. 491 of August 13, 2006, as amended on November 23, 2019, will help us figure it out.

According to this document, the common house property includes a heating system along with risers, radiators, control and shut-off valves, common house heat meters and other equipment on these networks.

That is, the management company serving the house is responsible for the state of communications. By law, the Management Company is obliged to check the equipment twice a year and, at its own expense, troubleshoot and / or replace damaged radiators, pipes, etc.

So what happens – the management company is always to blame for the flood? It is the Criminal Code that will compensate the owner of the apartment, as well as the neighbors who suffered from a pipe break? Not so simple.

Firstly, for the annual check of the state of communications, the specialists of the Criminal Code need access to the apartment, about which the residents are notified in advance. If plumbers and locksmiths were not allowed into the apartment, this fact (recorded) removes any responsibility from the Criminal Code and shifts it to the owner of the housing.

Secondly, if pipes or radiators burst, the question is, have they been replaced? If the apartment has pipes and batteries from the developer, then the management company is responsible for the leak and compensates for the damage. If the pipes and batteries were changed by the tenants on their own, without notification and involvement of the specialists of the Criminal Code, without the use of sealing threads and pastes, then the fault lies with the owner of the apartment. Therefore, when repairing and replacing communications, ideally, you should contact not a third-party organization, but your own management company.

When cooperating with an outside repair team, always sign a contract, keep receipts and warranties for equipment and materials. So you can prove the fault of third parties (workers or the seller), if the cause of the accident is improper assembly and installation of the system or marriage.

A break in a heating pipe and everything that follows after is a controversial case in legal practice. Each case is considered individually, and the decision – under equal conditions in apartment buildings – can be made both in favor of the Criminal Code and in favor of the owner. It’s hard to guess here. Contradictions on the issue start from above – in normative acts and documents.

As we already wrote, Decree of the Government of the Russian Federation No. 491 dated 08/13/2006 classifies radiators installed in an apartment, as well as control and shut-off valves, as common property. This is also evidenced by the Housing Code of the Russian Federation, in particular Article 36, paragraph 3, part 1.

At the same time, there is a decision of the Supreme Court of the Russian Federation dated September 22, 2009 (No. GKPI09-725), which excludes radiators with disconnecting devices in apartments from the common property of the house.

This is such a paradox. For a positive outcome of the case, contact lawyers with experience in dealing with housing and communal services.

What to do next?

Unfortunately, it is rarely possible to peacefully resolve the issue of who is to blame and in what amount they will compensate for the damage. If the fault, based on the results of the examination, lies with the management company, it is obliged, within 30 days from the date of the presentation of the demand, to compensate for the losses not only to the owner of the “emergency” apartment, but also to his affected neighbors. Otherwise, the owner submits a statement of claim to the court indicating the amount of damage to him and his neighbors. Additionally, you can claim compensation for legal costs and non-pecuniary damage.

To apply to the court, you need to have the following documents:

• Act of inspection of the apartment, where flooding
is recorded • Expert assessment of damage to
• Photo and video, where the pipe breakthrough and consequences of


are recorded, the more documents – acts, examinations, conclusions – you take with you, the easier it will be to prove the guilt of the UK or third side.

If the owner is responsible for the flood, it is not necessary to bring the situation to court. It is possible and necessary to negotiate amicably with neighbors, in a pre-trial order.

You enter into an amicable agreement on the voluntary repayment of the amount of material damage, where the data (name, address, telephone numbers) of both parties, the date and time of the incident, the amount of the compensated damage are recorded. Failed to reach an agreement? Then there is only one way out – the court. Based on the results of the meetings, the judge will make an objective decision on the amount and timing of payment.