Utilities in <u>Runcorn

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Your Complete Guide to Utilities in Runcorn

If you just moved and have some questions about Runcorn? Our utilities guide to Runcorn will explain in detail everything about broadband, area codes, power generation and energy distributors, and Runcorn water and sewerage. Keep reading to learn everything about utilities in Runcorn.

About Runcorn, Cheshire

Runcorn WA7 has a population of 61,789 and is located in the county of Cheshire. Cheshire has a population of 931,347 people.

Who supplies my water in Runcorn?

Runcorn water utilities are supplied by Icosa Water. In the table below are the contact numbers for Icosa Water, and United Utilities:

How to get in touch with the water suppliers in Runcorn

Ringing a contact number for Icosa Water or United Utilities is one of many options to deal with your Runcorn water problems.

Icosa Water contact numbers

In the table below you will find the contact numbers for Icosa Water general enquiries and emergencies.

Icosa Water telephone number Icosa Water Emergency telephone number
0330 111 0780 0330 111 2014
Mon-Fri 8:30am-5:30pm, Emergencies 24/7/365
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United Utilities contact numbers

In the table below you will find the contact numbers for United Utilities general enquiries and emergencies.

United Utilities telephone number United Utilities Emergency telephone number
0345 672 2888 0345 672 3723
Mon-Fri 8am-8pm, Sat 8am-4pm, Emergencies 24/7/365

Write to Icosa Water or United Utilities

You can also get in touch with Icosa Water or United Utilities, either by email or with a letter in the post. You can also submit your request on the Icosa Water or United Utilities website.

Icosa Water

If you prefer to send a letter to Icosa Water can do so by writing to the Icosa Water address below:

Icosa Water Address
Sophia House, 28 Cathedral Road
CF11 9LJ

If you would like to email Icosa Water, you must use the following email address:

Icosa Water Email Address

United Utilities

If you prefer to send a letter to United Utilities can do so by writing to the United Utilities address below:

United Utilities Address
United Utilities, PO Box 453
WA55 1SE

Cost of water in Runcorn

Water bill in Runcorn

Water rates in Runcorn will vary depending on if your home has a water meter or not. You can easily find out whether your Runcorn water rates are metered or not by looking at a recent water bill or by getting in touch with the supplier. Homes with metered Runcorn water rates will have a meter number listed on their water bills.

Metered Customers in Runcorn

Customers with a water meter at their Runcorn house will pay an annual fixed charge, plus an extra charge for each cubic meter (m3) consumed. The fixed charge is to cover the essential running costs of Icosa Water or United Utilities. Whilst the variable charges are for the consumption at your Runcorn home.

Unmetered Customers in Runcorn

Customers who don't have a meter at their Runcorn home pay an annual charge for their water usage. This charge is fixed, meaning your water bill will stay the same regardless of how much water consumed at your Runcorn home.

The rate unmetered customers pay for water in Runcorn is going to be based on the rateable value of your home. The rateable value part of your Runcorn water rates would 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 you have a small family, or live alone, getting a water meter for your Runcorn could be cheaper.

Customers with big families are probably not going to save money by having a meter installed.

How much is the average water bill in Runcorn?

The average water bill Runcorn residents are charged varies between water suppliers. The table below shows the average water bill by supplier:

Supplier Average Water Bill Per Month Average Annual Water Bill
Icosa Water - -
United Utilities £16.83 £202
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How do I pay my Runcorn water bill?

First of all, you will need to register with Icosa Water or United Utilities. After you've registered with Icosa Water or United Utilities, you will be offered a choice of payment options such as:

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

It's also possible to choose the frequency of your Runcorn bill. Whilst some customers prefer to make a single annual payment, other customers might want to settle for quarterly, monthly, or even weekly payments instead. As soon as you've set up your Icosa Water or United Utilities account, you will be able to choose your preferred payment method and frequency.

Can I switch the water supplier in Runcorn?

Unfortunately, your water suppliers are fixed and depend on the catchment area based on your postcode. As a customer in Runcorn WA7, your water suppliers are Icosa Water and United Utilities.

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.

Runcorn Water Frequently Asked Questions

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

Frequently Asked Questions About Water in Runcorn

Is the tap water in Runcorn safe to drink?

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

Where does the water in Runcorn come from?

There are three main sources of water that supply Runcorn:

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

Is the water hard in Runcorn

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 rating for water hardness in Runcorn is below 60ppm, that makes the water hardness in in Runcorn is rated as soft water.

What does this mean?

The clean water supply to your home in Runcorn contains just trace amounts of hard water minerals. soft water means your clothes should be softer after washing, and your appliances more efficient. There should also be less limescale in your appliances meaning they should not break down as often.

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You don't need to add a water softener to the water in Runcorn.

Runcorn No Water

If you have no water in your Runcorn home, you will first need to find out whether the problem is with your home plumbing or if the problem is a widespread issue affecting Runcorn.

If there is no water at your Runcorn home, do you only have no cold water or no hot water? If you still have cold water but no hot water, the issue will be with your home plumbing and not a problem affecting Runcorn.

If your home has no cold water, not even a trickle, contact Icosa Water or United Utilities for assistance. In this case you should try the following tips:

  1. Check for updates on the "In Your Area" sections of the Icosa Water or United Utilities website for any information explaining why you have no water.
  2. Have a look at the Twitter account for Icosa Water or United Utilities, quite often you will find they have posted an update about the issue.
  3. Talk to your neighbours and see if they are having a problem with their water supply.
  4. Make sure your stop tap is in the open position.

Runcorn water leak or flooding

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

If you find a water leak or flooding that's not inside your Runcorn property, you must do one of the following as soon as possible:

  1. Ring Icosa Water or United Utilities whether the problem is with clean water or wastewater.
  2. If you can go on the internet at your current location, go to the "report a leak" section of the Icosa Water or United Utilities website and complete the online form to report the issue.

Why does the water in Runcorn taste strange?

If you notice a change in taste or smell with your Runcorn water this could be because of one of the following reasons:

  1. Chlorination is a safe way to make sure the pipe network maintains high levels of hygiene throughout.
  2. Seasonal changes can affect it by infusing your Runcorn water with an earthy smell or taste.
  3. Plumbing can be a contributing factor to the taste of your water, adding salty, metallic, or rubbery hints to Runcorn water.

If you are unsure about your water's appearance, smell, or taste, you can speak to Icosa Water or United Utilities using the contact information above.

Internet in Runcorn WA7

Runcorninternet connected globe

The broadband speed you get at your Runcorn home depends on several factors such as:

  • Availability of fibre
  • How far from the telephone exchange you are
  • Location of the router in your home
  • Using wi-fi or ethernet connection
  • Which provider you have

Test the speed of your connection and see if it matches the average internet speed in Runcorn 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?

Runcorn Average Download Speed Runcorn Average Upload Speed
60.10 Mbps 11.95 Mbps
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The internet connection type you have can affect your download and upload speed in Runcorn. An FTTP is the best kind of broadband connection available in the UK and is available to 31.83% of homes in the UK.

ADSL is the slowest type of connection, in some remote parts of the UK it is the only means of connection available.

What should you consider when picking a broadband provider in Runcorn?

These days, the internet is as important as other essential utilities, maybe even more important. That means choosing an internet service provider might seem daunting at first. Worry not, let's take a look at the top four points to think about when picking a broadband provider in Runcorn.


The first thing you need to think about whilst picking a broadband provider in Runcorn is what's available. Whilst many homes in Runcorn can take advantage of superfast' or fibre connections, people outside a built-up area may have trouble getting fast broadband.

Although, homes that have been built in the last few years may already have access to ultrafast FTTH because property developers will often choose to install the latest technology during construction.

Type of connection

How can I connect to the internet in Runcorn?

  • Fibre broadband
    • This is fastest connection that's currently available in Runcorn
    • Fibre broadband is split into two categories, we call them 'Superfast' and 'Full Fibre'
    • Superfast broadband has a download speed of more than 24 Mbps.
    • A Full Fibre connection has a faster download speed from 300 Mbps up to 1 Gbps.
  • ADSL or ADSL2
    • An older type of connection that is delivered through a standard telephone line.
    • Slower speeds up to 24 Mbps.
    • Available to the majority of Runcorn homes.
  • Cable
    • Speeds similar to, or faster than, fibre broadband.
    • Available only via Virgin Media.
    • Restricted availability in some parts of Runcorn.
  • 4G/5G, Mobile, and Satellite Broadband
    • Speed depends on strength of the mobile coverage in Runcorn.
    • Might work out more expensive without an unlimited data plan.
    • Can tether to your smartphone without special equipment, however there are some mobile networks that restrict tethered connections.
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Runcorn broadband cost

Runcorn broadband bill

You also need to consider the price you pay for broadband in Runcorn. You will see many broadband providers are offering a low cost deal for new customers, but the price can quickly increase. You should always look in the small print of the offer when you sign up for a internet service in Runcorn. Some providers will raise the price even whilst you're in contract. For example, recently there was a BT price hike which will be felt by millions of BT customers.

Runcorn Broadband Reliability

The reliability of broadband in Runcorn also needs consideration, with many people working from home full-time or just a few days per week, knowing you have a reliable broadband connection to do your work can be extremely important.

When we're relaxing we're streaming movies or playing online games with friends meaning without an internet connection that's reliable at your Runcorn home will be an important thing to consider.

Runcorn broadband customer service

Lastly, the customer service of your Runcorn broadband connection is extremely important. Hopefully you shouldn't have to get in touch with your internet service provider, but if you ever do need to speak to them a provider with excellent customer service that is able to solve your issue quickly and efficiently is a strong plus when you choose a broadband provider in Runcorn.

Broadband FAQ

In the FAQ below, we've answered the frequently asked questions that customers in Runcorn ask about their broadband.

Broadband FAQs

Is the internet fast in Runcorn?

The average broadband speed in Runcorn is:

Runcorn Average Download Speed Runcorn Average Upload Speed
60.10 Mbps 11.95 Mbps

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

To put it in simple terms, these are the different kinds of internet connection.

  • ADSL: Asymmetric digital subscriber line - a broadband connection like this has a download speed of up to 24 Mbps. However, the speed will be slower the further away you are from the telephone exchange.
  • Superfast: This is a kind of fibre broadband connection with download speeds of at least 30 Mbps.
  • FTTC: Fibre To The Cabinet - is fibre broadband that's connected to one of those green boxes on your street in Runcorn, it's then connected to your house 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 Runcorn house. This means it's very fast and extremely reliable. At present, 31.83% of houses in the UK .

What broadband speed do I need?

That would depend on how you will use the internet. Check out the table below for a general idea what sort of download speed you should pick for a broadband service in Runcorn.

Usual Internet habits Recommended Download Speed Maximum of 2 devices
Maximum of 2 devices Social media, light streaming, email, working from home (WFH), etc 10-25 Mbps Broadband
Maximum of 5 devices AAll the above and 4K streaming or online gaming 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 transmit the data between your devices. 2.4Ghz WiFi travels further, but transmit data at slower speeds. 5Ghz WiFi signals have a smaller radius, but will transmit the data between devices at faster rates.

What's the landline area code in Runcorn

Corded telephone area code Runcorn

The telephone area code, sometimes called the landline dialling code, for Runcorn is 01928. If you call someone in Runcorn, and you are in a different area, you must add 01928 to the number you're calling.

How much does an 01928 Runcorn call cost?

If you have calls included with your landline or mobile, then the call cost is likely to be included as part of your tariff. Without an inclusive calls plan, the cost of the call will be about 10p per minute, plus an additional call set-up charge.

If you don't know whether you have inclusive calls, you should ask your provider before calling to avoid additional charges on your next phone bill.

How many different area codes are there in the UK? There are 645 area codes in the UK incl. Northern Ireland. They are a mix of three, four, or five digits long.

Gas and Electricity in Runcorn

Residents in Runcorn are able to choose their gas and electricity provider, but regardless of which supplier they choose, the electricity and gas is distributed and taken care of by the local network operator.

These network operators are officially called Distribution Network operators (DNOs) and it is these companies that own and operates the infrastructure that connect your Runcorn home to the electricity grid and gas networks.

In many cases you will never need to ever contact the Runcorn distribution network operator, but should the need arise, you can easily find out which DNO is responsible for Runcorn below.

You can also read more about what a Distribution Network Operator (DNO) does in our Distribution Network Operator guide

Electricity Distribution Network Operator for Runcorn

The electricity distribution network operator for Runcorn is SP Energy Networks - Merseyside and North Wales. You can find the SP Energy Networks - Merseyside and North Wales contact details in the table below:

SP Energy Networks - Merseyside and North Wales Contact Information
General Enquiries 0330 101 0444
Emergencies 0800 001 5400
Email customercare@spenergynetworks.com
Website https://www.spenergynetworks.co.uk/
Address Customer Contact Team, SP Energy Networks, 3 Prenton Way

The UK has six electricity distribution network operators:

  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 Runcorn

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

Fossil Fuels

In 2021, 47.4% of the UK’s total electricity production was by burning fossil fuels. This was mostly in the form of natural gas (42%) and coal (2.7%). Additionally, a tiny amount was generated with 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, this is expected to reduce in the next few years as the UK’s nuclear power stations are scheduled for closure, by 2035 there will only one nuclear power plant still producing energy. However, new nuclear reactors are being planned 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 fuel is generated from souces such as hydro, solar, wind, and biomass. This is expected to continue rising as the UK aims to meet its net-zero targets.

Towns and Cities Near Runcorn

Perhaps you're wondering which towns and cities are nearby Runcorn, in the below table you will find the closest five municipalities to Runcorn.

Closest five municipalities to Runcorn
Municipality Distance from Runcorn
Widnes 4.05 miles
Cronton 4.05 miles
Speke 4.65 miles