Water Service Lines
Understanding how water is delivered to your home and what you're responsible for in the event of water line repairs can be confusing. We're here to make it easier.
Water Service Lines
Water is provided to customer through private water service lines connected to MPW's water distribution mains. Water service lines are put in place at the time of construction and are owned by the home or business owner. MPW allows connections (water main taps) to our water distribution mains to provide water to homes and businesses, as shown above.
Please see our Water Service Rules for details, rules and responsibilities for water main taps and water service lines or call 563-263-2631 to talk with a Water Department staff member.
Water Service Line FAQs
MPW’s Water Service Rules provide additional information, however, here are some of the most common questions asked about water service lines.
Many older homes were built with galvanized or lead pipe service lines. Modern building standards now specify copper pipe. Typically, if galvanized or lead service lines are intact and in good working order, they are safe. If they become damaged, however, they must be completely replaced from the water main to the house. Copper service lines can be repaired.
Because water service lines are privately-owned, MPW does not maintain records of service line pipe materials. Contact a licensed plumber to help you identify your service line material. If you have concerns about your water quality due to that material, please contact our Water Department at 563-263-2631 for a complimentary test.
When the ground is subject to extreme weather conditions, such as freezing and thaw cycles or drought and extreme heat, it can cause the ground to heave, putting stress on some service lines and can damage them. This is one of the most common issues we see.
If you see bubbling water or have standing water, call us at 563-263-2631. MPW will help determine the cause and the appropriate course of action. If needed, a representative will meet you to help diagnose the problem.
If the leak is on the MPW-owned water main and not your service line, MPW will make all necessary repairs and restore the site to the original conditions.
If the leak is from the water service line, the customer is responsible for those repairs.
- Contaminants from a leaking water service line could pose a threat to the surrounding water supply. Additional water damage issues may include erosion around homes and in yards, or even undermine roadways. MPW staff will work with you to ensure the work is completed in a timely manner.
Depending on service line length and site restoration requirements, repairs can run in the thousands of dollars. For example, if your service line replacement includes any area under a city street, the total cost could potentially be in excess of $5,000 due to concrete excavation and repair to city specifications
Look for the nearest fire hydrant, it's likely our distribution line is on that side of the street. If you have questions about your specific property, call us and we'll help you locate the main.
Curb stop valves allow MPW staff and other authorized contractors to turn water on or off to the home/building. While they are generally found in the public right of way, the curb stop valve is customer-owned. Curb stops must be operable and accessible to MPW staff to turn water on and off when necessary. Any repairs should be done by a licensed plumber.
Get more information on water lines funding and MPW rebates
Paying For Water Line Repairs
Protect yourself should an unfortunate water repair become necessary.
Funding for Improvements
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Get Your Rebates
MPW offers rebates for residential and commercial customers who purchase energy-efficient items. Get yours today.