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Private water supplies

What is a private water supply and what to do if there is a problem with your supply

What is a private water supply?

The source can be from a well, borehole, spring, stream, river, lake or pond. It can serve just one property or several with a network of pipework.

The private supply can be for commercial and domestic use, including drinking, cooking, food preparation, washing and water used for food production.

Our involvement

We're involved because:

  • legislation requires that water used for human consumption is safe
  • we're required to carry out risk assessments and sampling on these supplies, with the exception of single domestic dwellings (unless this is requested)

Problems with your water supply

We will:

  • investigate - what's the problem and why
  • keep you informed if the supply becomes a potential danger to your health
  • give you advice, which will help to minimise any potential danger
  • work with other professional bodies (for example, Public Health England) to seek further advice about any potential danger

If we find that your supply requires some improvements, we'll work with you to prevent any further danger to human health. If necessary we can take formal action, in the form of legal notices, to ensure works are carried out. We can also make reasonable charges to cover the costs for carrying out any required works.

Fees for work

We'll confirm the price with you for any works, but the following are example charges:

Fees for private water supplies
Type of supply

Risk assessment (£33.50 ph)

Time taken (includes 1 hour average travel time) Sampling (one sample) – second sample £33.50 plus analysis Investigation of failure
Reg 10 - Single private dwelling £134.00* 4 hours £67 plus analysis cost £100
Reg 10 - Small supplies £234.50* 7 hours £67 plus analysis cost £100
Reg 9 - Large commercial Supplies £368.50 11 hours £67 plus analysis cost £100

*averaged costs – actual costs will be £33.50 ph for the first hour and then charged at 15 minute intervals. Figures are for illustrative purposes only.

Further information

For more information on the management and treatment of private water supplies, the Drinking Water Inspectorate (DWI) has useful information on their website. Please visit the DWI Private Water Supplies in England and Wales page.

Contact us 

If you would like to request a water sample or a risk assessment, please contact us.