Lead Testing in Scotland has become an important health and safety consideration in the residential housing sector. The changes target lead in water systems and enforcing stricter guidelines for safe drinking water in rented properties. Let’s explore what this means for landlords.

Understanding the Changes 👨‍🔧

Scotland’s updated Repairing Standard requires all drinking water meet minimum lead standards, aligning with WHO recommendations to eliminate lead due to health risks.

Landlord Responsibilities 📝

Landlords in Scotland must confirm the absence of lead pipes and components in rental properties’ drinking water supply, spanning from the boundary stopcock to the kitchen tap, due to potential remnants in properties built before 1970.

Navigating Compliance ✅

Landlords must take proactive steps to ensure compliance, including assessing visible pipework for lead, possibly with a plumber’s expertise. They should also be aware of concealed sources like lead solder, water tanks, and underground pipes, which require scrutiny to mitigate risks effectively.

Testing and Verification 💦

Landlords can use different testing methods to ensure no lead contamination. While Scottish Water offers a limited service testing the initial tap, it’s recommended to sample multiple outlets, especially those for consumption. Private labs accredited to BS17025 standards can conduct comprehensive analysis for a fee, ensuring thorough water safety verification when needed.

Seeking Guidance 🤝

Landlords with private water supplies should consult their Local Authority Environmental Health Team and Scottish Water for sampling advice and charges, ensuring compliance and prioritizing tenant health.


The recent amendments to the Repairing Standard demonstrate the Scottish Government’s dedication to public health and safety in the rental sector. With stringent measures addressing lead presence in water systems, landlords play a crucial role in tenant well-being. By actively inspecting, testing, and collaborating with authorities, landlords can effectively navigate these changes, ensuring safe drinking water in rental properties throughout Scotland.

Further Reading



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