What is Groundwater?

Groundwater is water that is beneath the earth's surface in pores and crevices of rocks, soil and sand.

Groundwater can become an issue after rainfall events, where the voids in the soil become saturated and the water table (the water level below the ground) rises to the surface level.

The rise in the water table allows groundwater to make its way back to the surface, most prominently in low lying areas.

The appearance of groundwater can be increased by construction activity as the natural underground flow paths of the groundwater can be altered by the inclusions of footings, denser soil due to compaction, driveways, retaining walls or landscaping.


What if you suspect you have a water leak? 

If during a dry period without rain you notice water pooling in close proximity to a water hydrant or stop-valve within the nature strip, we would advise you contact your Yarra Valley Water on 132 762 or South East Water on 13 28 12 to conduct a leaks assessment.

If during a dry period you notice water pooling around your water meter within your property you can assess if a leak has occurred by reading your water meter prior to going to bed, then immediately after waking up in the morning, to ensure you haven’t used any water overnight. If the meter displays a change in value then it is likely you have a water leak within your property. In cases where you have a water leak within your property, Council suggests you contact a registered plumber to fix the leak.

If you notice water out from underneath the ground and there has been no issues with your water supply, it is likely you are experiencing issues with groundwater seepage. If this is evident after a rainy period it is advised to monitor the pooling to see if it persists within drier periods. If you groundwater issue is persistent, you may need to engage a registered plumber or landscaper on advice as to how to best manage the groundwater within your property. 

Responsibility towards groundwater

Council has no liability towards managing groundwater or seepage within the Water Act 1989 as groundwater is a natural occurrence.  If you believe groundwater seepage is being caused by a damaged Council stormwater pipe, Council can investigate the integrity of the pipe and conduct any infrastructure repairs if required. If you are experiencing a groundwater issue caused by a leak from an upstream property, we suggest you contact the upstream property owner directly or follow the instructions on our Resolving Drainage with Neighbours page.