Birmingham Water: Supplier, Rates & Emergency Info

Dripping tap and location pin representing Birmingham Water

Are you curious about where the tap water comes from in Birmingham? Need to know who the Birmingham water supplier is and what its rates are? Discover everything there is to know about Birmingham water, including how to deal with water hardness, so you can enjoy quality water in your home today.

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Birmingham Water Supplier

Birmingham water is supplied by the Severn Trent Water company. You will find their contact information below.

Birmingham water supplier contact

Calling Severn Trent Water is the quickest way to contact the Birmingham water supplier. There is one main number to call, regardless of your query. For all water emergencies, contact the Water Supply and Sewerage Emergencies line.

Birmingham Water Supply Contact
Water Company Phone Number Opening Times
Severn Trent Water 0345 7 500 500 Monday to Friday 8am-8pm, Saturday 8am-6pm

Birmingham sewerage contact

Severn Trent Water and South Staffs Water own and manage Birmingham's public sewer network for both foul and surface water. You should contact them directly if you have a problem with a water supply or an overflowing public sewer.

Birmingham Sewerage and Wastewater Contact
Water Company Phone Number Opening Times
Severn Trent Water 0345 7 500 500 Monday to Friday 8am-8pm, Saturday 8am-6pm
South Staffs Water 0345 60 70 456 Monday to Friday 8am-6pm

Where Does Water Come from in Birmingham?

For more than a century since the Industrial Revolution, Birmingham's water has come from Wales and been transported to the city via the Elan Valley Aqueduct.

The Elan and Claerwen Valleys were chosen by Birmingham City Council due to the average annual rainfall, bedrock characteristics, and altitude.

Water from the Foel Tower is piped to the Severn Trent water treatment works. Rapid gravity filter sand beds clean it, and chlorine, fluoride, and lime are added. The Foel Tower rises 52 metres above the Frankley Reservoir in Birmingham and it is the gradient of the aqueduct that connects them allows the water to flow solely by gravity, eliminating the need for extra pumping.

However, due to the aqueduct's age and condition, Severn Trent has used a backup supply for up to six weeks each year since 2019. This temporary supply is sourced from elsewhere in the Severn Trent region.

Is Birmingham Water Hard or Soft?

Each water source has a unique mix of minerals and salts that determine whether your water is soft or hard. The higher the concentration of minerals in the water, the 'harder' the water is considered to be. The lower the amount of minerals in the water, the ‘softer’ it is.

Rainwater is quite soft because it contains no minerals when it falls. However, the hardness of the water will change as it passes through the water cycle. Rainwater seeps into the ground and picks up minerals like calcium and magnesium. It is normal to have a certain amount of minerals found in your water as this is a natural process.

Is Birmingham a hard water area?

The hardness of water is measured in parts per million (PPM), and the amount of particles dissolved in the water per million particles determines the rating. The Birmingham water supply is considered soft because the hard water mineral levels are less than 60ppm. This means that, when compared to hard water areas, your laundry should be softer, your energy bills should be lower, and your appliances should last longer.

However, the water may be harder during the times of the year when Trent Severn switches to its temporary Birmingham water supply. As a result, depending on use, home appliances may require additional cleaning to avoid limescale buildup.

Here are some tricks to keep limescale away:

  • Sinks, baths, and toilets - Use an acidic sanitiser on a regular basis to clean susceptible surfaces and remove limescale deposits.
  • Kettles - You can remove limescale build-up from your kettle by half-filling it with two tablespoons of white vinegar and leaving it in the kettle for four hours. Rinse your kettle and repeat the process to remove any remaining limescale.
  • Dishwashers - Make sure you occasionally top off the water softener compartment with salt.

Is Birmingham water safe to drink?

Yes! The water in Birmingham is drinkable. You can count on Birmingham water meeting high standards, making it potable. The UK Drinking Water Inspectorate has marked the water Birmingham quality at 99.96% in overall mean zonal compliance, meaning that you can drink the water. It is not required to filter or boil Birmingham water in order to make it drinkable.

Does Birmingham have the best tap water?

Food and drink experts named Birmingham water supplier Severn Trent the producers of Britain's best tasting tap water in 2008.

The panel, which included Michelin-starred chef Tom Aikens, tasted water from ten different regions and assigned a score out of five for clarity, smell, and, most importantly, taste.

Mr Aikens described Birmingham's water as having a "clean taste" and being "very fresh."

The water was described as "beautifully pure, a mountain stream of freshness" by Richard Rotti, head of wines at Annabel's and a panellist.

David Wickens, quality and environment manager for Severn Trent Water, said: "Severn Trent takes the production of high-quality drinking water very seriously, so we're naturally delighted to have come top in this blind test.”

What pH is tap water in Birmingham? The pH of water entering treatment plants varies by region due to geology and a few other factors. However, the pH of tap water in Birmingham should be between 6.5 and 9.5, according to UK water regulations.

Water rates Birmingham

Water rates in Birmingham vary depending on whether or not your home has a water meter. You can determine whether your Birmingham water rates are metered or not by taking a look at your latest water bill. Property owners with metered Birmingham water rates will see a meter serial number on their bill.

Properties that are not metered will not have a serial number, but they will have the rateable value of their home instead. The rateable value is determined by your local council.

The average water bill for Birmingham will depend on the water rates you have for your home.

How much is a water bill in Birmingham? 

The average Birmingham water bill is approximately £369 a year. This amount combines both sewerage and water supply costs.

How to pay for water in Birmingham?

You will first need to sign up and register with the Birmingham water supplier. Contact Severn Trent Water directly for more information.

Once you have set up an account, you can choose from the following payment methods to pay for your water usage:

  • Direct Debit
  • By standing order
  • At your bank
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How do I report a problem with Birmingham water?

If you notice a change in the taste or smell of your Birmingham water, it could be due to one of the following factors:

  • Seasonal changes can cause the water in Birmingham to have an earthy odour or taste.
  • Chlorination is a common method of ensuring clean water throughout a pipe network.
  • Plumbing can also have an impact on the taste of water, giving a rubbery, metallic, or salty flavour.

If you have any questions about the taste, smell, or appearance of the water in Birmingham, you should contact Birmingham's water supplier, Severn Trent Water.

Other problems with the water in Birmingham

Flooding, a burst water main, or no water at your property are all examples of potential Birmingham water problems. When faced with a water emergency, it is critical to know who to contact and how to proceed.

If you notice a water leak or flooding outside your Birmingham home, you should contact either Severn Trent Water or South Staffs Water on the numbers above.

My house has no water Birmingham

If you have no water in your home, you should first determine whether the problem is with your private plumbing or a Severn Trent Water outage affecting the water Birmingham receives. What you should do to find out is as follows:

  • Check to see if your stop tap is open.
  • Ask your neighbours if they have a water issue or not.
  • Check the "In Your Area" section of the Severn Trent Water website for any information on water cuts in your area.
  • If there is no water at your home, is it only cold water or hot water as well? If there is cold water but no hot water, the issue may be with your property's plumbing and not the Birmingham water supply.

If there is not even a single drop of cold water, contact Severn Trent Water for help.

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