Water & Wastewater Services
Welcome to the water services home page. This is an area that provides information about all things water related. As such, it's important to note that their are two distinct areas within the Town that are responsible for water services: (1) physical Water supply and (2) Water billing and Collections.
For advice on how to maintain water quality if your property has been shut down for an extended period of time refer to the following link:
Physical Water Supply and Service
(905) 871 – 1600
Frequently Asked Questions About Water Services
Does my drinking water contain lead?
The Town of Fort Erie tests for lead in drinking water as required by Provincial regulations. Residents who are concerned with having lead in their drinking water are encouraged to call Town Hall and book an appointment to have their water tested for free.
Can I get my bill electronically?
Yes, the Town of Fort Erie has teamed up with epost™ – the safe, secure and free way from Canada Post to manage your bills, statements and essential documents online.
When is my water/wastewater bill mailed?
Water/wastewater bills are usually mailed out on or about the 15th of the month.
When is my water/wastewater bill due?
All water/wastewater bills are due on the 3rd business day of each month. A penalty for late payment of 1.5% per month is added the day following the due date.
How can I pay my water/wastewater bill?
We offer the following convenient ways to make payment for your water/wastewater bill:
- Pre-authorized automatic withdrawals from your bank account on the due date;
- By phone, using your bank’s telephone banking;
- By internet, using your bank’s internet banking;
- At most financial institutions in person or at the ATM;
- A 24-hour drop box is located in the parking lot of the main entrance of Town Hall;
- By mail, to 1 Municipal Centre Drive, Fort Erie ON L2A 2S6; and
- In person, on the first floor of Town Hall.
- Online credit card payment using our eServices page, follow the link and instructions to pay using Visa or Mastercard. A small fee is applicable.
What should I do if I receive a final notice?
Payment of a final notice must be made by cash, debit card, certified cheque or money order at the Town Hall within fifteen (15) days of the notice date. Partial payment to avoid disconnection must include a cash payment of half the outstanding amount as well as signed payment arrangement for the remaining balance at the Town Hall.
Why am I being charged a penalty when I didn’t receive my water bill?
The responsibility to pay the water/wastewater bill on time rests with the property owner, whether or not the bill is actually received. The water/wastewater bills are mailed out on or about the 15th of each month and the due date is the 3rd business day of the month.
How often is my water meter read?
Water meters are read on a monthly basis. If we are unable to obtain an actual read, water consumption is estimated and you may be over/under billed. If your consumption history shows three (3) or more estimates in a row, please contact (905) 871-1600 ext 2466 to make an appointment with our meter technician. Consistent, actual readings can help identify plumbing leaks sooner and save you money.
The Town of Fort Erie is currently mid-way through a program to replace water meters with radio frequency (RF) meters. Click here for more information on water meters.
How is my water/wastewater bill calculated?
Your water/wastewater bill has two (2) components, a base or fixed charge and a consumption charge per cubic meter of usage. For 2020 the base charge for most households is $66.74 and the consumption charge is $3.475 per cubic meter.
How much is the water/wastewater bill for an average family of four (4) people?
The average monthly consumption for a family of four (4) is about thirty (30) cubic meters and would result in a bill of $170.99.
My water/wastewater bill has always been consistent. Now it is suddenly very high. Why?
A sudden rise in your water bill may be due to a number of reasons including:
- Plumbing leaks in toilets and taps;
- Consecutive estimated readings followed by an actual reading. Your water usage may have been under estimated in previous billings. The current bill may be ‘catching up’ from bills that were under estimated;
- An increase in the number of people living in the house resulting in greater water usage;
- A dry hot summer, resulting in higher consumption (pools/lawn watering); or
- An increase in the number of days in the reading period.
What is the most common cause of a water leak?
About ninety (90) percent of leaks in residential plumbing are found in the toilet tank. A simple test, where food colouring or a dye test tablet is placed in the tank, can be done. Within ten (10) to fifteen (15) minutes the colouring will appear in the toilet bowl if a leak is present.
What services does my water/wastewater bill cover?
Water/wastewater bills pay for three (3) essential services for Fort Erie residents:
- Delivery of clean drinking water;
- Wastewater treatment; and
- The infrastructure and maintenance of the Town’s water and wastewater systems.
What percentage of my water/wastewater bill is paid to the Region for treatment costs?
On average, 58% of each water/wastewater bill is paid to the Region of Niagara to pay for the treatments costs of water and wastewater.
Why do I have to pay the monthly base charge if I’m not using water?
The monthly base or fixed charge provides for the infrastructure and maintenance of the Town’s water and wastewater systems.
I am selling my home, what should I do to finalize my water account?
If you are selling your property, please remember to call the water billing department to order a final reading on your meter, at least seven (7) working days prior to the closing date. By leaving your forwarding address, the final bill can be settled quickly.
Is there a charge to set up a new account?
Yes, there is a one-time set-up fee of $47.80, which will be added to your first bill.
Is the landlord or tenant responsible for paying the water/wastewater bill?
The property owner is responsible for the payment of all water/wastewater bills and can be mailed C/O “tenant name” on your request. A duplicate bill can be mailed to the property owner for a nominal monthly charge. Water/wastewater arrears may be added to the owner’s property taxes as per By-Law No. 240-96, Part VII, Subsection 7.3 and Subsection 398(2) of the Municipal Act, 2001.
How many litres are there in a cubic meter?
There are 1,000 litres in a cubic meter.
How many gallons are there in a cubic meter?
There are 220 gallons in a cubic meter.
Preventing sewer back-ups
Nobody wants a situation that would force us out of our homes. The Town would like to remind residents to flush only the 3Ps – pee, poo and [toilet] paper– to help keep our sewers free from blockages.
Other items such as wet wipes (including so-called 'flushable wipes'), paper towels, napkins and hygiene products are a major cause of sewer blockages that can result in back-ups into your home and your neighbours’ homes– likely requiring you to evacuate for professional cleaning.
The waste water pipe which goes from your house to the public sewer is usually only about 4 inches wide, which is about the size of a DVD, meaning it can easily become blocked by a build-up of non-flushable materials.
Large blockages often require Town staff to clear them, at a time when our efforts and tax dollars could be focused on other more essential services.
So together let’s STOP IT, not BLOCK IT!
Fats, Oils & Grease
Improper disposal of fats, oil and grease (FOG) is one of the most common causes of the drainage problems the Town deals with.
This is not a small problem – FOG can clog up sinks, drains and sewers to the point that they increase the risk of sewer back-ups, while streams and rivers can often end up polluted due to oily waste entering their ecosystems.
By making a few simple changes to day-to-day habits, you can be doing your part to tackle a major environmental nuisance, while also reducing your own chances of having to deal with damaging and costly drainage problems on your own premises. It’s unquestionably a win-win.
The Niagara Region has partnered with a number of other regional bodies to produce a comprehensive website, idontflush.ca
Here you can read and learn about the dangers of FOG, as well as a number of other products, which were never designed to be disposed of using your household sewer.
So please, from all your friends at the Town of Fort Erie, take the ‘I don’t flush’ pledge today!