Your house’s stop box is a cast-iron pipe installed vertically underground and covered with a lid. It provides access (with a tool on a pole) to a water cut-off valve between MUD’s water supply and your home.
There are two ways to find out if you have an issue with your stop box:
- You notice near your sidewalk or in your yard that water accumulates in one particular spot to form a sinkhole.
- MUD notices you had a water usage drop that drastically affected your meter reading. This means MUD provides you water without its amount being properly metered at your home.
Customers often confuse a stop box issue with a sewer problem because of the sinkhole. They don’t know they need a plumber because they think it’s MUD’s problem, not theirs.
MUD will send someone to find out whether the stop box or water line leaks. But once they confirm it’s the stop box, it is the homeowner’s problem and they must get a plumber to fix it.
Eyman asks the homeowner whether MUD determined it was with the stop box. This assures the issue was accurately diagnosed. But before Eyman quotes a price for repairs, they must know whether the main water line from the stop box into the home is made of copper or lead.
Costly problems with lead
If the homeowner does not know which type of water line they have, Eyman can call MUD and check.
If it’s a copper line, there is no problem. But if the line is lead, Eyman will advise homeowners that repairs of such stop boxes do not always succeed. The owner may need to replace both the stop box and the water line.
Eyman encourages homeowners to get an estimate for the water line’s replacement, if necessary, from its Utility Manager.
Some customers want to get it all fixed at once while others go a more economical route. They agree to let Eyman try to make repairs. Eyman opens the ground with an excavator to see if they can crimp off the water pipe so they can put on the new stop box.
If they can’t, Eyman tells homeowners they need a new water line.
Got a problem with a stop box? Eyman can help. Call us today at 402-731-2727.