Out of hours emergency service

How do I know if my repair is an emergency?

The checklists below will help you to identify whether the repair is an emergency and could help you to resolve the problem without the need to call the Out of Hours Service.

  • If you have a prepayment meter, check there is enough credit on the meter and you have reset it by following the instructions provided by your energy supplier.
  • If you have a combi boiler check the pressure gauge, if it is low (less than 0.5bar) try to increase it by opening the filling loop until the pressure gauge reads 1.5bar, the valve is usually positioned under the boiler with a flexible hose attached.
  • If the pilot light is off, try to reignite it as per the user instructions.
  • Check the boiler is turned on at the switch. 
  • Check the thermostat is set at the right temperature for you.
  • Check that the programmer is set to constant.

Please note if you have another form of heating such as a fire it is not classed as an emergency.

  • Check with your neighbours, if they also have no electricity, it is likely there is a power failure in the area.  If this is the case please contact Northern Powergrid on 0800 668877.
  • If you have a prepayment meter, check there is enough credit on the meter and you have reset it by following the instructions provided by your energy supplier.
  • If your lights and/or sockets are affected, check the trip switches, these are located in the fuse box (or consumer unit).  Unplug all appliances then reset the trip switches.  Plug your electrical appliances back in one by one, this will help to identify whether the source of the problem is an appliance.
  • Please note we will not attend to glazing repairs outside of working hours if the window is situated on the first floor. 
  • If the damaged window is a result of vandalism you must obtain a crime number from the police, before calling the out of hours service.
  • If the repair relates to securing a window, we will not attend to the repair outside of normal working hours if the window is situated on the first floor.
  • If keys are lost, check if there is another key holder you can contact to gain access to your property, as if we do attend to change the locks you may be recharged for the repair.
  • If your keys have been stolen you must obtain a crime number from the police before calling the out of hours service. 
  • If the repair relates to an exit door, is there another that can be used until we can attend during normal working hours? 
  • If you are unable to lock an exit door or it is jammed open, please contact the out of hours service.  
  • If a manhole is blocked please contact Northumbrian Water on 0845 717 1100
  • If the gully is blocked please contact the out of hours service.  
  • If your toilet is blocked do not keep using the toilet, and please avoid flushing it.
  • If a toilet is blocked or you are unable to flush it and it is not overflowing you may be able to unblock it by pouring a few buckets of water down the pan. 
  • You could also us a toilet plunger; please remove as much water from the pan as possible before attempting this.
  • Locate where the leak is coming from; if the leak can be contained please report it during normal working hours.
  • If you are unable to contain the leak, isolate the water supply by turning the stopcock to the off position (this is often situated under the kitchen sink), then contact the Out of Hours service. 
  • If water is dripping onto electrics contact the Out of Hours service.  

If the smoke alarm is bleeping it is not classed as an emergency.  

Emergency Repairs

Our Out of Hours Service is available for emergencies only.  We will attend to an emergency repair out of hours if there is an immediate danger to a customer or further damage will be caused to the property if the repair is delayed. If your repair is not classed as an emergency, you will be asked to call back during normal office hours or report your repair online.

We class an emergency as any of the following:

  • Total loss of heating with no secondary heating source available (e.g. fire)  
  • Total loss of power (not including power cuts in the area or loss due to pre-payment meter credit running out)
  • Water leaks that cannot be contained
  • Water on electrics
  • No power to medical equipment e.g. stair lifts.
  • External communal doors not opening or closing
  • Full sounding fire alarms
  • Blocked toilet (if only one toilet in the house)   
  • Exit door or ground floor window not secure

Some of the above may differ depending on a customer’s individual circumstances.

When a member of the team attends your property for an emergency repair they may only be able to ‘make safe’ or do a temporary repair.  Where this happens permanent repairs will be left for normal working hours, and we will arrange a mutually convenient appointment or earliest availability for the scale of repair required.

If you think your repair is an emergency, please give us a call on 0191 525 5000. We will need to ask you questions that will help to identify the source of the repair.

If your repair is not an emergency, you can report a repair through our online repairs service.

Please note, if we attend out of hours and it isn’t classed an emergency, you may be charged for the service.