Problems with your water

Every day, our teams work to ensure your water is not only clean, but looks and tastes great. But sometimes you might notice your water looks, tastes or smells different.

I have no water

Do you have low pressure or no water at all?


Does your water

look, taste or smell unusual? 


"Why does my water look different?"



If you notice your water looks dirty or discoloured, the cause is usually due to maintenance, or repair work being undertaken on in the pipes that supply your house.


"Why does my water have a bad taste or smell?"



The water we supply comes from a variety of sources including rivers, boreholes, wells and springs. Each source has its own characteristic taste depending on the type and concentration of its natural mineral composition.


"Is there fluoride in the water?"


In some parts of the UK, hexafluorosilicic acid is added to the water to artificially increase the level of fluoride in the drinking water. Bristol Water does not currently and has never added hexafluorosilicic acid to the drinking water we supply.


Fluoride occurs naturally in rocks and soils. As water moves through the rocks and soils a small amount of fluoride can enter the water.


"What is flushing?"


Flushing is a process we use to clean out external water pipes. Sometimes this will make your water look cloudy or milky, but this is caused by millions of tiny air bubbles in the supply. 


"Why is my water hard?"


As a natural resource, not all water is the same. Whether you have hard or soft water will depend on the geographic factors within the area in which you live.


Water quality in your area

Work in your area that may

impact on water quality

When we make repairs, we take care to minimise the impact on the quality of the water supply, however, sometimes the work may have a temporary impact on the quality of your water.


    All of the water we supply is classed as either hard or very hard. Water hardness is a natural feature and is a result of the geology of our area being primarily limestone. Minerals such as calcium and magnesium dissolve into the water as it moves over and through the ground. The level of these minerals in the water determines the water hardness. 

    We do not add any fluoride to our water. The water we supply naturally contains between 0.1 and 0.3 mg/l (parts per million) of fluoride, which is not removed during treatment. The maximum concentration of fluoride allowed in the water is 1.5 mg/l. There is no minimum limit.

    It is not possible to catch coronavirus from drinking tap water, which goes through a rigorous disinfection process before reaching your tap. It is completely safe to drink.


    We take a series of tests including biological and microbiological tests. We test the levels of chlorine, which keeps the water wholesome from our treatment works to your home. A common test is for coliform bacteria, which is not harmful to health and is removed in the treatment process. We also test for e.coli, which is common in untreated water and is removed by our treatment process and disinfection using chlorine.

    Charging for water services is a complex matter, involving both the law (primarily the 1991 Water Industry Act) and our economic regulator, the Water Services Regulation Authority, which is referred to as Ofwat.

    Your supply is either unmetered or metered, and this normally determines the way we charge for your water supply.

    Unmetered – we normally use the rateable value (RV) of your property and calculate the cost for the year in advance

    Metered – we normally read the meter twice a year and you pay for the water you actually use

    Click here for more detail

    If you feel you are struggling to pay your bills, or you feel like you need extra help then please visit our Priority Services page where you can sign up or find out more.

    There is no cost to close your account. Depending on the status of your account and any payment arrangement you may have, there could be a final balance to pay. If you're moving and need to tell us about your change of address, please complete this online form. Alternatively contact us on 0345 600 3600

    Report a problem

    If you're still having a problem with the quality of your water, contact us so we can help to identify cause.

    Find an approved plumber

    We can help you find an approved plumber, who will help you diagnose the cause of your problem.