Utilities in <u>Barnstaple

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A Complete Guide to Utilities in Barnstaple

Are you moving and want to know more about Barnstaple? Our utilities guide to Barnstaple is going to provide you with everything there is to know about broadband, area codes, power generation and energy distributors, and Barnstaple water and sewerage. Keep reading to learn everything about utilities in Barnstaple.

About Barnstaple, Devon

Barnstaple EX31 has a population of 31,616 and is located in the county of Devon. Devon has a population of 795,012 people.

Who supplies my water in Barnstaple?

Barnstaple water services are supplied by South West Water. Below are the main phone numbers for South West Water:

Getting in touch with your water supplier for Barnstaple

Calling a phone number for South West Water is one of many contact methods to deal with your Barnstaple water issues.

In the table below we have listed the main contact numbers for South West Water general enquiries and emergencies.

South West Water contact number South West Water Emergency contact number
0344 346 1010 0344 346 2020
Mon-Fri 8am-6pm, Sat 9am-1pm, Emergencies 24/7/365
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Write to South West Water

You can also write to South West Water, you have the choice of posting a letter or sending an email. You can even send your message through the South West Water website.

If you prefer to write a letter to South West Water can do so by writing to the South West Water address below:

South West Water Address
Peninsula House, Rydon Lane
Exeter, Devon
EX2 7HR

Price of water in Barnstaple

Water bill in Barnstaple

Water rates in Barnstaple are based on if your home has a water meter or not. It's easy to find out if your Barnstaple water rates are metered or unmetered rates by checking your water bill or by getting in touch with the supplier. Homes with metered Barnstaple water rates will have a meter number listed on their water bills.

Metered Customers in Barnstaple

Customers who have a water meter installed at their Barnstaple house will pay an annual fixed charge, plus a charge for each cubic meter (m3) that's used. The fixed charge is to cover the essential running costs of South West Water. While the variable charges cover the usage at your Barnstaple home.

Unmetered Customers in Barnstaple

Customers that don't have a water meter at their Barnstaple home have an annual charge for their water consumption. This charge is fixed, this means you will pay the same amount regardless of the amount of water you use at your Barnstaple home.

Water rates for unmetered customers in Barnstaple will be based on the rateable value of your home. The rateable value part of your Barnstaple water rates will have been determined by the local council in the 90s and are unlikey to have changed since then.

Should I get a water meter installed? It really depends on how much water you consume annually. If your family is small, or you don't live with others, having a water meter installed at your Barnstaple might work out cheaper.

Customers with bigger families that use more water will probably not benefit by installing a water meter.

How much is the average water bill in Barnstaple?

The average water bill Barnstaple residents are billed is £18.17 monthly, which works out at £218 a year.

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How do I pay my Barnstaple water bill?

First of all, you will need to register with South West Water. After you've registered with South West Water, you will be able to choose your preferred payment method, such as:

  • Direct Debit
  • Online payments
  • Pay over the phone
  • Bank transfer
  • Payment by cheque
  • Payment card

You should also be able to choose how frequently you pay your Barnstaple bill. Whilst some customers prefer to make a single annual payment, other customers might like to set up quarterly, monthly, or even weekly payments instead. As soon as you've set up your South West Water account, you will be able to choose your preferred payment method and frequency.

Can I switch the water supplier in Barnstaple?

Unfortunately, your water supplier is fixed and depends on the catchment area based on your postcode. As a customer in Barnstaple EX31, your water supplier is South West Water.

Since April 2017, business water customers have been able to switch water suppliers. You can find out if your business is eligible in our guide to switching water suppliers.

Barnstaple Water Frequently Asked Questions

Below we have answers to the most frequently asked questions that customers in Barnstaple have about their water supply.

Frequently Asked Questions About Water in Barnstaple

Is tap water in Barnstaple safe to drink?

Yes! You can drink the tap water in Barnstaple. You can rest assured that Barnstaple water meets high standards making it safe to drink. The UK Drinking Water Inspectorate has scored Barnstaple water quality 99.94% in overall mean zonal compliance, that means your tap water is safe to drink. It is not required to boil or filter Barnstaple water to make it drinkable.

Where does the water in Barnstaple come from?

There are three main sources of water that supply Barnstaple:

  • Surface sources - 93%
  • Groundwater sources - 6%
  • Mixed sources - 1%

Is the water hard in Barnstaple

While rainwater itself is relatively soft, water hardness can change through the water cycle. As rainwater filters through rocks, it picks up minerals, such as magnesium and calcium. The more minerals the water picks up, the harder is your water considered.

The water hardness rating in Barnstaple is less than 60ppm, that makes the water hardness in in Barnstaple is rated as soft water.

What does this mean?

The clean water supply to your home in Barnstaple contains low levels of minerals that cause hard water. soft water means your home appliances should be more efficient and your clothes will come out softer after washing. There should also be less limescale in your appliances which extends their lifespan.

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Water softener isn't needed at your home in Barnstaple.

Barnstaple No Water

If there isn't any running water in your Barnstaple home, you will need to check if the issue is to do with your home plumbing or if the issue is within your neighbourhood in Barnstaple.

If there is no water at your Barnstaple home, is the problem no cold water or no hot water? If you don't have hot water but have cold water, the problem will be with the plumbing at your home and not a problem affecting Barnstaple.

If your home has no cold water, not even a trickle, contact South West Water for help. In this case you should try the following tips:

  1. Look at the "In Your Area" sections on the South West Water website for any explanations as to why you have no water.
  2. Examine the Twitter account of South West Water, they will often tweet updates when there's a problem.
  3. Check with your neighbours to find out if they also have no water.
  4. Check that your stop tap is open.

Barnstaple water leak or flooding

Barnstaple water problems could be anything from flooding or a leak, to a burst water main in your Barnstaple home. This is why you should make sure you know what to do and who to contact regarding water emergencies.

If you notice a water leak or flooding outside your Barnstaple property, you must do one of the following as soon as possible:

  1. Ring South West Water regardless if the problem relates to wastewater or clean water.
  2. If you can access the internet from your location, visit the "report a leak" page on the South West Water website and fill in the form to report the problem.

Why does the water in Barnstaple taste strange?

If you find the taste or smell is different with your Barnstaple water this may be due to one of the following reasons:

  1. Chlorination is a safe way to ensure hygiene throughout the pipe network.
  2. Seasonal changes can impermeate the Barnstaple water with a somewhat earthy aroma or taste.
  3. Plumbing can cause the taste of your water to change, adding salty, metallic, or rubbery hints to Barnstaple water.

If you have questions about your water's taste, smell, or appearance, you should not hesitate to reach South West Water using the contact information above.

Internet in Barnstaple EX31

Barnstapleinternet connected globe

The broadband speed you get at your Barnstaple home can vary depending on several factors such as:

  • Availability of fibre
  • How far from the telephone exchange you are
  • Placement of your router
  • If you're using wi-fi or ethernet
  • Which provider you have

Test how fast your internet is and see if it matches the average connection speed for Barnstaple with our quick and easy to use internet speed test tool.

Did you know that the average download speed in the UK is around 62.5Mbps?

Barnstaple Average Download Speed Barnstaple Average Upload Speed
39.70 Mbps 10.00 Mbps
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The type of internet connection you have can affect your download and upload speed in Barnstaple. An FTTP is currently the fastest broadband connection you can get in the UK however, at the time of writing, this is only available to 31.83% of homes in the UK.

ADSL is the slowest type of connection, but for some customers in remote areas it's the only type of internet connection available.

Things to consider when searching for a broadband provider in Barnstaple?

These days, the internet is as important as other essential utilities, perhaps more important. Which means picking a reliable provider for your internet could feel daunting. To ease the pressure, we've covered four main points worth considering before searching for a broadband provider in Barnstaple.

Availability

The first point to bear in mind before searching for a broadband provider in Barnstaple is the issue of availability. The majority of homes in Barnstaple should have access to superfast' or fibre connections, those living in rural homes may have trouble getting fast broadband.

That being said, homes that have been built recently should be able to enjoy access to the FTTH since developers often install the latest infrastructure when constructing new homes.

Type of connection

What are the different types of connection in Barnstaple?

  • Fibre broadband
    • This is the fastest available internet connection in Barnstaple
    • There are two categories of fibre broadband connections, they are known as 'Superfast' and 'Full Fibre'
    • Superfast broadband has a download speed of at least 24 Mbps.
    • A Full Fibre connection has a faster download speed from 300 Mbps up to 1 Gbps.
  • ADSL or ADSL2
    • An internet connection that's provided via your phone line.
    • Has a slower download speed of up to 24 Mbps.
    • High availability with for 99.9% of Barnstaple homes.
  • Cable
    • Speed that are the same as, or faster than, fibre broadband.
    • Only available with Virgin Media.
    • Availability can be limited in some parts of Barnstaple.
  • 4G/5G, Mobile, and Satellite Broadband
    • The speed will depend on strength of the mobile signal in Barnstaple.
    • Could prove more expensive unless you have an unlimited data tariff.
    • You don't need a router if you tether the connection to your smartphone, however there are some mobile networks that restrict tethered connections.
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Barnstaple broadband value for money

Barnstaple broadband bill

You should also think about the price you pay for broadband in Barnstaple. You will see many broadband providers are offering a low cost deal for new customers, however you might find the rate suddenly goes up. We recommend you double check the small print of the offer before you commit to a internet service in Barnstaple. Some providers will raise the price even whilst you're in contract. We reported recently on the BT price hike that has affected millions of customers.

Barnstaple Broadband Reliability

The reliability of broadband in Barnstaple should also be considered, with many people working from home on a part-time or full-time basis, having a reliable internet connection to do your work can be extremely important.

Then in our freetime we're watching movies online or gaming online meaning without an internet connection that's reliable at your Barnstaple home is going to be important.

Barnstaple broadband customer support

Lastly, the technical support for your Barnstaple internet connection is really important. You might never need to contact your broadband provider, however, if you have an issue and need to get in touch with them a high level of customer support that deals with your query efficiently and quickly is definitely something worth considering when selecting an internet provider in Barnstaple.

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Broadband FAQ

In the FAQ below, we've answered the frequently asked questions that customers in Barnstaple have about their internet connection.

Broadband FAQs

How fast is the broadband in Barnstaple?

The average speed of broadband in Barnstaple is:

Barnstaple Average Download Speed Barnstaple Average Upload Speed
39.70 Mbps 10.00 Mbps

What do ADSL, Superfast, FTTC, FTTH, and FTTP actually mean?

Put simply, this is the way of connecting to the internet.

  • ADSL: Asymmetric digital subscriber line - with this kind of broadband you can get speeds up to 24 Mbps. However, the speed reduces as you get further away from the telephone exchange.
  • Superfast: This type of fibre broadband has a download speed of at least 30 Mbps.
  • FTTC: Fibre To The Cabinet - this kind of fibre connection is first delivered to one of those green boxes on your street in Barnstaple, from there it's connected to your home through your traditional copper wire telephone line.
  • FTTP/FTTH: Fibre To The Premises/Home - This type of fibre connection is use 100% fibre cables to your Barnstaple property. That means it's the fastest and most reliable type of broadband fibre internet. Currently, 31.83% of UK home .

What speed internet is best for me?

That will be dependant on what you will be using the internet for. Have a look at the following table for a rough guide to what sort of download speed you should choose when getting connected in Barnstaple.

Usual Internet habits Recommended Download Speed Up to 2 devices
Up to 2 devices Email, web browsing, working from home (WFH), light streaming, etc 10-25 Mbps Broadband
Maximum of 5 devices AAll of the above, online gaming and 4K streaming 50-100 Mbps Broadband
Over 5 devices All the above plus large file transfers or streaming your own video content on the web 100+ Mbps Broadband

What's the difference between 2.4Ghz and 5Ghz WiFi?

2.4ghz and 5ghz are two types of radio frequencies an internet router uses to talk to your connected devices. 2.4Ghz WiFi signals travel further, but transmit data at slower speeds. 5Ghz WiFi signals have less range, but will transmit the data between devices at faster rates.

What's the telephone area code for Barnstaple

Corded telephone area code Barnstaple

The landline area code, sometimes called the dialling code, for Barnstaple is 01271. If you call someone in Barnstaple, and you are in a different area, you will need to add 01271 before the number you're trying to call.

How much does an 01271 Barnstaple call cost?

If you have calls included with your mobile or landline tariff, the phone call is likely to be included in that tariff. If you don't have an included calls tariff, you can expect to pay around 10p per minute, plus the call set-up charge.

If you are unsure whether you have a plan that includes calls, we recommend getting in touch with your provider before making the call so you don't find unexpected charges on your telephone bill.

How many dialling codes does the UK have? Including Northern Ireland, The UK has 645 area codes. They are a mix of three, four, or five digits long.

Gas and Electricity Supply in Barnstaple

Residents in Barnstaple can choose their gas and electricity supplier, but regardless of the supplier they are billed by, the gas and electricity is going to be maintained and supplied by the network operator for the region.

We call them Distribution Network operators (DNOs) and they are the company that own and operates the infrastructure that connect your Barnstaple home to the gas network and electricity grid.

In many cases you will never need to ever contact the Barnstaple distribution network operator, but should you ever need to, you can quickly find out which DNO covers Barnstaple in this section.

Learn more about what a Distribution Network Operator (DNO) does in our Distribution Network Operator guide

Electricity Distribution Network Operator responsible for Barnstaple

The electricity distribution network operator for Barnstaple is Western Power Distribution - South West. You can find the Western Power Distribution - South West contact details in the table below:

Western Power Distribution - South West Contact Information
General Enquiries 0800 096 3080
Emergencies 0800 6783 105
Email wpdnewsupplies@westernpower.co.uk
Website https://www.westernpower.co.uk/
Address Lostwithiel Road
Bodmin, Cornwall

There are six electricity distribution network operators in the UK:

  1. Electricity North West
  2. Northern Powergrid
  3. SSE Networks
  4. SP Energy Networks
  5. UK Power Networks
  6. Western Power Distribution
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Power Generation near Barnstaple

There are no power plants within a 10 mile radius of Barnstaple.

Fossil Fuels

In 2021, fossil fuels accounted for 47.4% of the UK’s electricity generation. This was mostly in the form of natural gas (42%) and coal (2.7%). In addition, a small percentage was produced from other kinds of fossil fuels (2.7%). The amount of electricity generated from fossil fuels varies each year.

Nuclear Power

16.1% of electricity was generated by nuclear reactors in 2021, and in the coming years this is expected to reduce as nuclear power stations in the UK’s begin to close, by 2035 there will only one nuclear power plant still producing energy. However, we can expect new nuclear reactors to be built such as Hinkley Point C which is under construction.

Renewable Energy

Renewable energy produced 40.3% of electricity in 2021, which is up from 29% in 2018. Renewable sources can include wind, solar, hydro, and biomass. This is expected to continue rising as the UK strives to hit its net-zero targets.

Municipalities Near Barnstaple

If you've ever wondered which municipalities are within reach of Barnstaple, in the table below you can see the five nearest towns and cities to Barnstaple.

Closest five municipalities to Barnstaple
Municipality Distance from Barnstaple
Lynton 3.18 miles
Minehead 9.22 miles
Ilfracombe 10.35 miles
Woolacombe 10.35 miles
Braunton 13.51 miles