Building & development
Building & Renovating

Water & sewer service locations

If you are planning to undertake any type of excavation activity, it is important to be aware of possible hazards and/or valuable assets within and around your proposed worksite.

Prior to any excavation type work Shoalhaven Water advises that you make contact with our customer service staff to obtain information of where our water supply and/or sewerage assets are located.

As part of any development project it is important that you:

  • Determine the location of all underground services including water and sewerage pipelines.
  • Obtain Shoalhaven Water approval to build over or adjacent to any water or sewerage assets owned and/or operated by Shoalhaven Water. Refer to Council’s Building Over/Adjacent to Sewers Policy for sewerage assets.

Some useful hints to locate pipelines

  • Water mains are generally located in the footway or road shoulder. Shoalhaven Water does have an allocation for water assets within the footpath which is normally 2.4 metres off the property boundary line to the back of the kerb. Water mains are generally laid at ‘standard’ depths as set out in Shoalhaven Water’s standards.
  • Gravity Sewer pipelines are generally located within private property; however, they are also located within the road reserve, public reserves and other public spaces. Sewer pipelines can vary significantly in depth. Pressure sewer pipelines are not generally placed in private property.

Sewer diagrams can be obtained through Dial Before you Dig. Locations and depths should be taken as a guide only. 

Mark the approximate location of the pipeline by using the fittings as a guide. Fittings such as hydrant lid, stop valve lid, service lid (if available), air valve lid or pit, scour lid or pit and marker post information for estimated location of bends or pipelines can provide assistance in the approximate location of the water main.

Similar with sewer rising (pressure) pipelines, use fittings such as gas release valve lid or pit, scour lid or pit and marker post information for estimated location of bends or pipelines can provide assistance in the approximate location of the pipeline.

Gravity sewer pipelines are generally straight lines between manholes or from manhole to lamphole. Gravity pipelines are generally constructed deeper than water pipelines and pressure sewer pipelines.

How to dig safely:

Plan – obtain location of pipes from Dial Before you Dig.

Protect – Protect Shoalhaven Water’s assets, failure to do so may result in joint failure, damage to asset, flooding and injury.

Pothole – Comply with the instructions issued by Shoalhaven Water and/or the work method statement. Generally begin excavation by hand to expose the services. Have a Shoalhaven Water staff member present during excavation (Fees and charges may apply).

Do not use large heavy machinery to locate Council assets. It can lead to possible damage to the asset.

Proceed – complete the first three steps before proceeding.

For further information plumbers, contractors and surveyors can contact Shoalhaven Water, please call 02 4429 3214.

What are water and sewer pipes made from?

Water pipelines are under pressure constantly and the water pressure in the pipeline does vary. Water pipe lines are generally made of:

  • Plastic (uPVC, MPVC & OPVC),
  • Ductile Iron Cement Lined (DICL),
  • Poly (HDPE),
  • Mild Steel Cement Lined (MSCL) & Hobas.

Older pipelines are made of:

  • Asbestos Cement (AC) &
  • Cast Iron Cement Lined (CICL). 

Service lines are generally made of:

  • Copper, and Poly (HDPE) for long services.
  • Large service pipelines may be made of Ductile Iron Cement Lined (DICL).

Gravity sewer pipelines are not under pressure. Gravity sewer pipelines are generally made of:

  • Vitrified Clay (VC),
  • Asbestos Cement (AC), and Plastic (uPVC).
  • Older pipelines are made of concrete (Conc).
  • Where the sewer pipe is exposed it is generally; Ductile Iron Cement Lined (DICL), or Cast Iron Cement Lined (CICL) (in the past). 

Pressure sewer pipelines (known as rising mains) are pressure pipes generally made of:

  • Asbestos Cement (AC),
  • Plastic (uPVC, MPVC & OPVC),
  • Ductile Iron Cement Lined (DICL),
  • Cast Iron Cement Lined (CICL) (in the past),
  • Poly (HDPE), & Hobas.