For emergencies, please call 203-562-4020
For emergencies, please call203-562-4020

FAQs

General Water Questions
1. How much does my water cost?

Tap water is a bargain, costing less than a penny a gallon. In comparison, a gallon of generic store-brand bottled water costs approximately 95 cents per gallon – over 135 times more than that same gallon of tap water. You are paying the costs for water service, not for the water itself. The service charge covers the fixed costs of providing water to your home so water is there any time you turn on a faucet. These costs are based on meter size and are intended to cover the costs of meter reading, accounting, billing, customer service and any other costs that are directly related to you, the customer. The usage charge is the cost of treating and distributing water that you actually use.

2. What is the best way to turn the water off at my house in an emergency or for repairs? How?

You can turn the water off inside your home/building at the main valve. The main valve is generally located where the water service enters the house/building. You should maintain this valve so it is easily accessed in case of an emergency. 

3. What should I do if I suspect someone is stealing water?

Please call our Customer Care Center at 203-562-4020. Our police force will open an investigation.

4. Who maintains the fire hydrants?

The owner of the hydrant is responsible for maintaining fire hydrants. This might be the Regional Water Authority or it might be your municipality, depending on where you live.

Customer Service
1. Who should I call in case of a water emergency, such as a water line break or broken fire hydrant?

For water emergencies call the Regional Water Authority at 203-562-4020. This line is monitored 24-hours a day. Please DO NOT e-mail us with an emergency.

2. Is the Regional Water Authority responsible for water leaks?

The Regional Water Authority is responsible for maintaining the water lines in the streets and from the water main in the street to the curb box.  Customers are responsible for maintaining the curb box and the water lines and plumbing that run from the curb box into your house.

3. How do I turn off the water supply to my house in the event of a break in my plumbing or a repair?

You can interrupt the flow of water to your home by turning off your house valve. 

4. How can I tell if my toilet has a leak?

To find out if your toilet leaks, listen for the sound of running water. You can also place a few drops of food coloring in the tank. Don't flush the toilet. If the coloring is seen in the bowl, the toilet is leaking.

5. How can I change my mailing address?

To change your mailing address, call the Customer Care Center at 203-562-4020 or send a request in writing to Customer Care, 90 Sargent Drive, New Haven, CT 06511. 

6. How can I add a name to my account?

Billed customers can only be property owners or tenants. Tenant accounts can be set up when the RWA receives written authorization from the property owner.  See below for additional information regarding owner billing and property closings.  In all cases, the request is handled by the Customer Care Center.   

7. How do I get water turned on in my name?

If your move-in is due to purchasing a property, the attorney handling the property closing will notify us of the transfer and a new account is set up in the buyer’s name.

If you are a tenant, have your landlord contact the Customer Care Center at 203-562-4020 to request a Landlord/Tenant Responsibility form. We will set up the account upon receipt of the completed form. The final bill will be based on an estimated reading unless you provide a meter reading as of the date of move out.

8. When should I expect my first bill?

Most customers are billed on a quarterly basis. You will receive your first bill within three months of your account activation date.

9. How do I get my water back on? (assuming it’s been turned off for non-payment)

Call the Customer Care Center at 203-562-4020 to obtain payment amount due information and to arrange turn on. Payment must be received in our office at 90 Sargent Drive in New Haven by 3:30 p.m. for same day turn on. If the payment is received after 3:30 p.m., your water service will be turned on between 8:30 a.m. and 12 p.m. the following day. 

10. I'm moving. How do I get water turned off in my name?

If your move out is due to property sale, the attorney handling the property closing will notify us of the transfer so that we may final bill your account. We will notify the attorney of the final bill amount so that settlement can be made between you and the buyer at closing and final payment is remitted by your attorney on your behalf.              

If you are a tenant, you must contact the Customer Care Center at 203-562-4020 to request a final bill. The final bill will be based on an estimated reading unless you provide a meter reading as of the date of move out.   

11. How can I determine if my payment has been received?

You may check your account balance by calling 203-562-4020 and selecting self-service option # 2 for billing and payment. You can also refer to your latest invoice which displays the most recent payment posted to your account or contact the Customer Care Center.    

12. If I can’t pay my bill on time, can I get an extension?

Contact the Customer Care Center at 203-562-4020 to discuss payment arrangements.   

13. How many days of water usage are on the bill?

The billing period is based on 91 days, but the number of days between meter reads can actually range from 82 to 115 days. The “Current Billing Information” box on your invoice will give you the period that is covered by the usage charge on your bill. The service charge is based on a 91 day billing period.  

14. I don't want to pay a bill I think is incorrect. What should I do?

It is always your right to question a bill.  Any customer who has a question or a complaint about a water bill, or who disputes any or all of it, should contact the Customer Care Center at 203-562-4020. If the customer remains unsatisfied, the customer may ask a Company Review Officer to consider the matter. Such a request must be made within 13 days after we mail a termination notice to the customer. If the dispute remains unresolved after receipt of the written decision of the Company Review Officer, the customer may request a further investigation by our Office of Consumer Affairs. Address any correspondence to 90 Sargent Drive, New Haven, CT 06511-5966.   

15. Could the meter equipment cause a high bill?

High bills typically are the result of increased water consumption often due to leaks or seasonal usage.  Common types of leaks found in the home include leaking toilet flappers, dripping faucets, and other leaking valves.  If you don’t find a leak, you can call the Customer Call Center at 203-562-4020 for further assistance.  

16. Why is my water off?

Several things can lead to losing water pressure or having a loss of service. Water pressure could be low due to construction in the area or a water pipe repair.

When contractors plan to temporarily turn water off to an area, they hang letters on front doors. If this is the case, please call the phone number on the letter.

The Regional Water Authority can turn off water if a customer has not paid an overdue bill. Prior to this termination, the customer will receive a disconnect notice on the last water bill. If RWA has an accurate phone number, you might receive an automated phone message advising your account is past due and in jeopardy of being disconnected.

17. What should I do if my bill seems higher than usual?

The most common reason for a high bill is a household leak. To find out if you have a household leak, make sure all the water inside and outside of the house has been turned off. Go to your water meter and check to see if any of the dials on the meter are moving. If the dials are moving, you may have a household leak. Most often, household leaks are associated with toilets or faucets. You should also check the pipe between the curb box and your house, sprinkler system timer, water softener, water heater, and water filtration unit. If everything seems to be in order, or you need assistance, please call our Customer Care Center. We're here to help.

18. My bills for the last two quarters show that I used the same number of gallons each quarter. How can that be?

Your bill for usage is based on a meter reading. Our meters measure water usage in hundred cubic feet (CCFs), and it is not unusual for customers to have similar usage patterns year over year.

We round down to the closest hundred cubic feet of usage when we bill you for water usage. For example, your actual usage might be as high as 14.9 CCF or as low as 14.1 CCF; however, we round down to 14 units.

One CCF, one hundred cubic feet, is equal to 748 gallons. Therefore, 14 CCFs converted to gallons is 14 x 748 = 10,472 gallons. As a result of dropping off fractions of CCF usage, you actually could have used anywhere between 10,472 gallons (14.1 CCF) and 11,145 gallons (14.9 CCF).

19. How can I save money on my bill?

You can save money on your water bill by repairing leaks and using water wisely. To check to see if you have a leak, turn off the water inside and outside of your home and look at your water meter. If any of the dials on your meter are moving, you could have a household leak.

The most common culprit for indoor leaks is the toilet. To find out if your toilet leaks, listen for the sound of running water. You can also place a few drops of food coloring in the tank. Don't flush the toilet. If the coloring is seen in the bowl, the toilet is leaking. Other indications of household leaks are dripping faucets and unusual wet spots in the house or yard. A leak of 30 drops a minute wastes 84 gallons of water a month.

20. Once I've repaired household leaks, what other steps can I take to save money on my bill?

Outside the house, water thoroughly but less frequently and only in the cool times of day. Turn off your automatic sprinklers when it rains. Water your lawn only when it needs it; if a screwdriver inserted into the soil goes in seven inches easily, the lawn doesn't need water. Don't let the hose run while washing your car; use a bucket instead with a quick hose rinse at the end. Use a broom instead of a hose to clean driveways and sidewalks.

Inside the house, run only full loads in your washing machine and dishwasher. Refrain from using your toilet as a wastebasket. Turn the water off while brushing your teeth and shaving. While waiting for hot water to come down the pipes, capture the cold water in a watering can to use later on your plants. Shorten your showers, or install a low-flow showerhead.

21. How do I pay my water bill?

Please do not send cash payments through the mail.
You can pay your bill:

  • using E-billing (paperless billing) 
  • by credit card
  • by paying through your bank website 
  • by cash at an authorized payment location 
  • by mail
22. Can I view my bill online?

Yes, you can enroll in paperless billing. This will allow you to see bill online and schedule payments.  Or you can view and pay bill through most bank websites. 

23. What happens if I do not pay my bill?

Not paying a water bill within 30 days leads to delinquency and disconnection. Past due balances are due immediately.

If water is disconnected due to nonpayment, service will be restored after full payment of the past due amount and all delinquent fees.

Payments for past due accounts are applied first to delinquent fees and then to current water charges
A late charge of 1.5% will be added to all past due charges. A fee will be charged for each returned check.

24. What should I do if I believe that my bill is high or incorrect?

RWA employees work with each customer who has a water bill concern.

If your bill is higher than expected, here are a few possibilities to consider:

  • Check the meter reading dates. The usage billed would fall between those dates. Was a pool filled or other activities that may use more water than usual?
  • Compare usage to the same period the previous year using the water usage graph on your water bill.
  • Irrigation significantly impacts water bills. Was there a change in irrigation / watering (seeding)? 
  • Check low flow indicator on you water meter.
  • Check your plumbing for leaks under sinks, running toilets or constant wet spots between your water meter and home. 
    • Did a plumber fix something between the billing dates? 
    • Did usage return to normal when the irrigation system was winterized?
  • A change in rates. RWA typically adjusts rates every 18 months. 

Please call 203-562-4020 if there are any questions about a bill.

25. What is a CCF?

 A CCF (one hundred cubic feet) is a unit of measurement.  It is the way we measure how much water flowed through your meter.  One CCF equals 748 gallons.  

26. What is a service charge?

All customers pay a service charge for water service.  The service charge pays for the fixed costs of providing water to your home so water is there any time you turn on a faucet. These costs are based on meter size and are intended to cover the costs of meter reading, accounting, billing, customer service and any other costs that are directly related to you, the customer. 

27. Where is my water meter?

Your water meter is generally located inside your home/building where the water service enters the house/building. 

28. How do I read my water meter?

The meter reading is taken from the figures shown in the area that looks like an odometer, right above the words CUBIC FEET on your water meter. The meter shows the total number of cubic feet of water used since the meter was installed. Because RWA’s charge is based on units of 100 cubic feet, the meter reader discards the last two numbers. That number is subtracted from the number the meter showed the last time the meter was read. You are billed for the number of hundred cubic feet of water you have used since the last time your meter was read.

29.

If you, or anyone presently and normally living in your home, is seriously ill, the RWA will not shut off your utility service during such an illness if you have your doctor or someone from their office call us at 203-562-4020 and tell us that you or someone else in your home is seriously ill. Your doctor must send us a letter telling us about the nature and length of your illness within a week after they call us. You will be required to make an equitable arrangement to pay your past due bills and to pay on a current basis all future bills during the duration of the illness. The RWA has the right to contest the validity of any serious illness certificate it receives.