I live in a unit in Sydney Australia, I am trying to figure out how to turn off my water so that I can replace the washers on the taps in the basin. Is this possible so that I don't disturb my neighbours? I have looked everywhere inside my unit for a tap which turns off the water but can't find it...


1) Have a look under the kitchen sink. If OZ practice follows UK practice, this is the place in a home where you expect to find the main stopcock (regardless of whether it's the point in a home nearest the road etc). It's usually hidden behind a bottle of bleach you'd forgotten you have.

Whenever I change taps I install an isolating valve under the basin (builders leave them out to save money) so that I can subsequently work on a basin without emptying the cupboard under the sink and warning the family to cross their legs for a while.

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2) Ask a neighbour

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  • 4
    I'd add "Ask the building manager" and/or "Ask the building owner". – Tester101 Jul 1 '14 at 12:15
  • Having been in a few apartments in Sydney, these can really be anywhere in the apartment. Anywhere. Bathroom cupboard, laundry, kitchen... In this one I'm in it's in the far corner in the kitchen, behind the pantry. Weird. And the building manager won't necessarily have any idea where it would be. – Arafangion Nov 11 '17 at 12:38

There are usually local shut-off valves under the basin specifically for that purpose. If not, I agree that asking the building manager/owner/landlord/superintendent is the most straightforward answer.

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