Re-opened your premises?

We want to get your water bills right – you can help us do this by telling us the date you move back in, and if possible, taking a meter reading.

Meter Reading

We are currently not taking meter readings, as this is not considered essential activity.

With many businesses expected to move back in at the same time, we won’t be able to get out and read all the meters as soon as premises are re-opened, even if meter reading is permitted.

Customers are entitled to read their own meter at any time – you do not have to wait for us to do this for you. You can upload meter readings at any time here – you should always try to upload them the same day you take the reading if possible, and you can also upload a photograph showing the meter reading, which can be helpful in case of any queries in future.

Submit a meter reading & we’ll donate £1

As a Castle Water customer, you can continue to help support Save the Children’s Emergency Fund. For every meter reading you submit, Castle Water will donate £1 to the Fund. The need for the Emergency Fund will be considerable at this time; and together, we can make a difference.

Temporary Closure?

If you haven’t yet told us you have had to close, it is easy to do so using our temporary closure form here. Even if you haven’t told us about a closure before you re-open, please tell us that you had to close, so we can reduce your bill.

Why is this important?

Ofwat has agreed with Castle Water’s proposal that businesses closed temporarily due to Covid-19 should not be charged during the period they are closed – Castle Water was the first water retailer to address this issue to ensure customers weren’t over-charged. However, Ofwat is adamant that customers should be charged for “any” consumption even when closed – it isn’t clear whether this only applies to areas where customers can already be charged where they are vacant (such as Thames Water), or will also cover areas which don’t currently charge vacant properties (such as South East Water).

Ofwat has also agreed that customers with a substantial reduction in activity should not pay full charges. They have decided that this applies to businesses with a reduction of 95% or more in activities – again, it isn’t yet clear how “activities” will be interpreted. If you think this covers your business, please give us as much information as possible on the form, so we can reduce your charges as much as possible and answer any questions Ofwat raises. For example, you should tell us in what way activity has reduced - if you have reduced staff numbers by 95%+, or your sales have reduced by 95%+.

Preparing to Re-open

When you are preparing to re-open, you will also need to check that any equipment, appliances and pipework using water are safe. In the first instance there are some simple steps that can be taken to recommission your water system:

  • To ensure that the water in the plumbing systems is fresh, run all taps individually, starting with the tap nearest to where the water enters the building and moving systematically to the most distant outlet. It should be sufficient to run until the water is clear and feels cool to the touch.
  • Where water is supplied from storage, storage cisterns should be emptied and filled with water direct from the incoming supply, before the taps are flushed.
  • Be aware of non-drinking water systems as well such as heating systems, leisure systems and water used in production, and take specialist advice.
  • Flushing should be carried out in a manner which minimises aerosol generation, e.g. removing shower heads prior to flushing, to reduce the risks of Legionella transmission. Safety considerations should be made for those flushing including appropriate PPE.
  • Ensure that all appliances are also thoroughly flushed through before use, using manufacturer’s instruction manual.
  • If the property has any internal filters or water softeners, these should be checked to ensure they are working correctly as outlined in the manufacturer’s instruction manual.
  • Ensure that if plumbers are required to make any changes or repairs to the plumbing system that approved plumbers under the WaterSafe scheme are used.
  • Larger buildings, those with tanks, showers, calorifiers and more complex pipework the expectation is likely to be for more extensive flushing followed by cleaning and disinfection. If you have a complex plumbing system you should ensure you have a competent person to oversee this work.
  • Recommissioning your water supply should be in-line with your water safety management plan, including pressure testing all systems.
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