United Utilities Water

Contact Details

Billing – Metered customers
United Utilities
PO Box 50
WA55 1AQ

Billing – Unmetered customers
United Utilities
PO Box 459
WA55 1WB

Contact Information

  • Billing – Domestic customers, metered 0845 746 2222
  • Billing – Domestic customers, unmetered 0845 746 1100
  • Business customers 0845 746 2255
  • Difficultly paying your bill 0845 746 2034
  • Leakline 0800 330 033
  • Water and wastewater enquiries & emergencies 0845 746 2200
  • Pollution hotline 0800 195 1230

Customer services are open from 8am – 7pm on Monday to Friday and 8am – 1pm on Saturday.

General Information

United Utilities was created by the merger of North West Water and Norweb in November 1995. They are responsible water and wastewater networks as well as regulated electricity distribution in north west England and provide 2.9 million households with 2,022 million liters of water per day. The majority of water supplied comes from reservoirs with a small percentage from aquifers. Untied Utilities manage 140 treatment works, 381 service reservoirs and pump water through 40,600 KM of mains pipes.

  • United Utilities provide water as well as dealing with the removal of waste water.
  • The water that United Utilities supply is classed as soft to moderately hard.

Customer Services

United Utilities operate a Guaranteed Standards Scheme to ensure that all their customers receive a high standard of service at all times. Compensation is offered if deemed appropriate. United Utilities operate a Vulnerable Customer Scheme for their customers who receive certain benefits, as well as certain allowances for specific medical conditions. If you would like to apply for this then contact United Utilities on:

WaterSure (formerly known as our Vulnerable Customer Scheme) provides financial assistance to metered customers who use large amounts of water for essential purposes.

Telephone: 0845 309 3001
Minicom: 0808 143 1195

133 responses to “United Utilities Water”

  1. D. Kinnear says:

    United Utilities.
    Water meter supplying three bedroomed semi. Using 77cubic metres per annum.
    Charges in 2006: £187.44.
    From April 2007 to: £370.56.
    INCREASE: +97%.
    Monopoly-owned by foreign company, no alternative supplier, no media outcry.

  2. Kirsty Robson says:

    We live in Northwich and on a regular basis, we can smell the sewage treatment works. We have lived here four years and have not smelt them until this year. The smells have got worse and more frequest. With the hot summer approaching, can you confirm this problem will be solved in the near future?

  3. Mr Peter Simkins says:

    The quality of our water supply is extremely poor going from smelling/tasting like bleach to being orange!! We have had checks made by United Utilities which have come back as ‘acceptable levels’. to whom I ask?. I am unsure of your star rating so I assume that being so dissatisfied that the lowest is 1?

  4. Margaret Pask says:

    Statement impossible to check. New charges 100% increase. Monopoly owned and unable to change supplier means the skies the limit.

  5. Carol Rees says:

    Probably the wrong place to ask BUT
    why is the reservoir in Langendale peak district near Tintwhistle nearly empty. Thanks

  6. Er says:

    Waiting 2 hours on the phone for nothing

  7. P Kitchen says:

    I am in exactly the same 3 bed semi £187 per year for 2006 now in 2007 increased to £349.69, This cannot be correct, point number 2 the bills are so difficult to work out a math degree is required

  8. Carol Burgess says:

    Late April main drain blocked in my front garden UU have attended 3 times – no result. (v.deep drain half full) CCTV to be used within 2 weeks – no attendance. Spoken to 3 v.nice people at UU to-day – no result. The drain has now progressed to being 3/4’s full of raw sewage!

  9. Miss B Cannell says:

    I have just been posted a note to say Barnston Road Sewage Works is extended from feb 12 weeks now to 22nd June. My life has been made miserable by this work, endless traffic streams up our small drive, the road surface now wrecked, endless car screeching as they tear down and realise too late their is a blind Corner. The audacity to site slow progress due to uncharted pipes. Lets make it clear I want a job working for for Donegan Engineers, They start at 8.30 stop at 10..and do not appear until 2 then gone by 4. On average they work for 4 hours.. Amazing I go to work at 8.30 , nip home for lunch 12.15 to 1.45 , come back at 4.30 and there is never any one working.
    What compensation do I get for making my life miserable , a raise in water rates???
    Miss Cannell..

  10. Colin Eccles says:

    Can someone please explain why the field adjacent to Higher Rid reservoir in Lostock was mown recently,during an obvious lapwing nesting season, leaving the field covered in dead baby birds and smashed eggs ? Do you only employ blind, heartless morons to do your work ?
    Yes ! I WOULD like an explanation.

  11. Alan Pywell says:

    They want me to do their work for them, reading my meter – in the meantime they grossly over-estimate. They charge me for my rainwater then sell it back to me – brilliant!

  12. Cllr. Mrs Rosie Evans says:

    For over 2 years the residents on The Gravel, Mere Brow, have listened to the constant rattling of a loose grid cover in the road. Night and day, on this busy road, every vehicle passing over it manages to hit “the spot” sending crashing sound waves, enough to test the nerves of the most saintly individuals. Despite this having been reported and attended to by the “elite” U.U. workforce on several occasions they seem unable to resolve this simplest of problems, but alas, maybe I expect too much.

  13. D Henley says:

    Don’t believe a word United Utilities say, we have been told by their complaints department that all charges are on hold until they have satisfied my complaint. This morning I received a county court summons. United utilities will not retract, none of my questions have been answered re: ‘Why my water rates are now double’ and break down of bills since RV started so we can see if bill is in line with inflation.

  14. Cllr. Rosie Evans says:

    After reporting, on this website, a loose grid on The Gravel, Mere Brow, which has been rattling for 2 years, we were graced with the presence of a 3 man contracting team this a.m. (5th time). Once again they have proceeded to repair the wrong grid. Admittedly they were given the wrong location on their worksheet, now that’s a surprise, and we wonder why UU costs us so much. This is another example of their inefficiencies and blundering. Why only 5 stars!!!!!!

  15. Jenny Wild says:

    I am a nurse and live in a one bed flat. Charges are £350 a year! As a shift worker I am hardly there. I have twice applied for a meter to be installed only to be told that there is not enough pipe to fit one even though 2 flats on the same row has got them! I am not giving up – watch this space.

  16. S. Mchale says:

    I have just read in the Daily Mail that the average for Water Charges in my area Northwest (United Utilities) are as follows:

    Without Meter – £156
    Single Person With Meter – £100.08
    Family of 3 With Meter – £221.88
    Family of 5 With Meter – £355.86

    I would like to know where these figures are derived from? Because you can bet your life they are nowhere near anything like anything I have had to pay over the last 2-3 years? Am I being robbed? lied to? or just plainly conned? I have just had to pay £440.78 for my water this year and a similar figure for last years. I honestly feel like swearing and I can tell you if anyone from United Utilities was near me now I would want to inflict physical damage on them.

    They waste more water through inefficiency and non-fixing of broken pipes and still dare to charge me for the privilege of only being able to use them. Apart from the fact that the water smells of bleach is orange in colour from time to time.

    I remember when this would be called a monopoly and could be investigated, so tell me how this is allowed when they are not giving the service they say they are, droughts occur when we have the best rainfall to sunshine ratio and thepeople at the top pay themselves incredible bonuses for not reaching industry targets or the pathetic ones set by government, apart from the fact they are now run by foreigners who have no vested interest in making it work and just want the rich pickings that come from running (or not) these companies.

    I don’t expect my posting will make it onto the site but then again, who wants an honest opinion these days??

    Funny thing is who do you ask to test your water to see if it meets the standards? Yes you guessed it the people who mess up in first place and why can I not find anywhere that will look at my bill or tell me what I should be charged??

    A very disgruntled customer with nowhere to turn… What a marvelous country we live in…

  17. Victor Jewitt says:

    I’ve been told by the United Utilities that I was in credit – asked for money back, said they had a technical error and are looking into it. I have kept ringing and getting same reply, this has gone on for 6 months!!!

  18. John Ridgwell says:

    UU has a long standing habit of overcharging customers, not telling them when their account is in credit and then making a refund almost impossible. The result is, no doubt, huge sums earned each year in interest on money belonging to their customers. Has anybody else suffered this?

  19. Ian Hunter says:

    I am single person in small flat, out working all day and at weekend out walking or watching sport. My DD increased last year from £20 to £49, I argued the point and they said it was to cover estimated bill for next year. I said why, am I going to take in family of 6 as lodgers, then they said it was because I have not paid enough last year. They make it up as they go along. My bill this year is estimated t be £468 – what a joke, I have just worked out to be possibly £277 – a huge difference. This company needs to be removed as supplier and replaced.

  20. Mr K. Emslie says:

    Just bought my first property – a one bedroomed flat in Cheshire and received a rated bill for £408.37. I told my parents who couldn’t believe it – they have a 5 bedroom house about 5mins away and pay under half of this. I called UU for an explanation of this and they said it was because of the number of people who live in the property! God knows how many people they thought were living with me but they soon apologised and adjusted the figures! Cut the cost by over £200! Give them a ring with any queries they’ve probably got the house/flat occupancy incorrect!!

  21. L. Howard says:

    I am shocked to discover I have no say in who supplies my business with water. The quality is so poor, smelling of bleach and looking murky, I am reduced to use bottled water for drinking as I don’t trust it to keep me in good health and what do I get for this massive inconvenience? A bill almost doubled last yrs. What a way to live.

  22. Shelagh Mcintosh says:

    I have received a letter stating that a leak has been found in the supply to my property. I have 7 days to fix it or United Utilities, under statutory powers will do the repair and charge for the work. But no one will give me any idea as to the extent of the leak, the date on which it was found and the vicinity. I also have to go to all my neighbours to discover who shares the line and therefore who pays. So what do I tell my insurance company? One incurs charges for a plumber before you have an estimate and United Utilities will not supply any information as to who shares the line. I don’t particularly want to knock on my neighbours doors. Whilst I fully accept the responsibility for the supply pipe United Utilities are not providing any real assistance. I had better customer service living overseas in third world countries.

  23. Kay Dinsdale says:

    United Utilities charge what they like and there isn’t a thing you can do about it. They issue bills based on the ‘rateable’ value which was set back in the late 90’s. So if you are in a building that was since converted to flats, each of those flats are subject to the SAME rateable value as if it was one building. I am a single person in a flat in a building that was converted along with another 2 adjoining buildings. The occupants of the other buildings pay just over a third of what I pay a year. So if all bills were set at the same time, how is it their bills are less? United Utilities say there is NOTHING that can be done since the department that looked after assessing bills by rateable value no longer exists. They will NOT provide a refund and the only way to reduce future water bills is to get a water meter fitted. But I’m moving out at the end of this month anyway. If there was competition for water provision you can bet your a$$ that department would be re-opened!

  24. Katrina Rice says:

    For anyone reading this the only way forward with united utilites is to see legal advice from a solicitor; seems everyone on here is told the same story, everyone has over estimated bills, I have even contacted the useless consumer council for water, I’ve even been billed for double periods too.

  25. Dr Roger Templeman says:

    I’ve been trying to find out from UU if they should be charging me for surface water drainage for several years. Finally in September, I got a letter from them (ref 210907AMAX254675) saying they would investigate and write in 10 working days time. That was 3 months ago… I assume they’ve worked 10 days but I’ve heard nothing. I’m fed up with writing letters and phoning, and getting solicitor’s letters. Don’t these people have an email address?

  26. Emma says:

    We are currently converting a mill into our home and we have a water meter although UU have no record. According to our searches we have no mains water and no sewerage?? although we have both?? We have telephoned UU that many times I couldn’t tell you as all we want is our Lead supply to be changed or a new supply to be fitted. We’ve had a price off one UU man saying £500, then the next day we get a call saying this will be £1500 from the call centre. We give up! We look on the web site and they are supposed to replace all lead pipes for free, so we call again and they say “it’s a commercial property according to our records so we won’t replace the supply!!!” It’s not been a commercial property for a whole year when we bought it and told them. We really give up! Can anyone help as UU control everything. We want to move in in 6 months.

  27. Rand Hobart says:

    Dreadful company. We are currently experiencing severe problems with our water supply. It’s a Sunday and their site is down, all their numbers are ‘Not open’. How the hell is one supposed to sort such a problem? Very poor customer care.

  28. Chris Knighton says:

    Well all you people are very lucky. At least you have water! We live in Blackpool, and it’s been 24 hours since our supply went down (Sunday teatime of all things). The supply came on during the night until just after 9.00am this morning. We have no water to wash or flush the loo. Also no clean suitable containers to take where we have heard that water tankers are distributing it. Have tried shops, but only small bottles are left, and they cost a fortune. Very little information is available. Just felt like a moan. Lucky we have some wine and stuff left over from Christmas!!!

  29. N. Porter says:

    We live in a three bedroomed house on a new housing estate and are a family of 4. When we moved in 2 years ago and our dd was £27 month, then last July we had a bill estimated for the year for £1020. They wanted to put dd up to £82 month. After ringing them and asking them what it was all about, they said what do you expect with a family of 4. After a bit of negotiation we got dd down to £70 month. Sure we are paying for our neighbours water supply as well. This is ridiculous but what can we do.

  30. Jon Kay says:

    I find the service or lack of it is not acceptable, people in the Blackpool area have been without water for 24 hours and no one seems to know when it’s being put back on!

  31. G Barnes says:

    I have just phoned to inform UU that I have vacated my property. They couldn’t have been more helpful. I lived alone for the first time and am a big green about bills etc. Didn’t know you got a refund or you could be in credit. UU offered the info to me without prompting, and a cheque is in the post. Excellent service I feel!!

  32. Carla Abbott says:

    3 Bed terrace with 2 adults who work full time.
    No hose pipe, don’t wash our cars here, one shower per day each and approx 3 loads of washing per week. Wash the dishes by hand one per day.

    Bill for first 6 months £15pm.
    Bill for next year £45pm – absolute joke.
    I phoned them and told them to reduce this to which they reply that I will not be paying off what I owe them.

    The £15pm by the way is what they said would cover our usage. Bills make no sense what so ever.

  33. Dawn Entwistle says:

    OK, I’m stunned. Received my water bill today for 2008/2009 and yes, it’s gone up again to £582.19. Just read in the Daily Express that water bills will be going up as much as £30.00 p.a. giving an average water bill of £330.00 – well mine’s gone up £50.00 and has done year in year out. So where is this average bill? It’s not here in Worsley! 2 people, working full time, hardly ever in the house paying the same as our neighbours who have 3 children + 2 adults and they’re at home all day – how can this be right? Oh yeah, and because we are at the end of the water supply we have very low water pressure, and try getting that changed, rubbish!

  34. B K Sambrook says:

    I have just had my house rebanded ‘D’ to ‘C’ citing houses in my Grove as a comparison as they were band ‘C’. UU base water rates on the same calculation as council tax but they refuse me any refund / recalculation. Why do I pay more than families in the same type of house?

  35. Rachel Williams says:

    Absolutely disgraceful excuse for a company, moved out of my property 2 weeks ago and was unable to take a meter reading as their box was unreadable. UU refused to come out and read it, so over estimated a ridiculous amount, but accepted it as hands tied, so assumed bill was finalised… How wrong! Just received a new bill they say they have done a reading and we had used more than their estimate! Not my fault! So because of this they have re-estimated my bill for a previous property I moved out of over a year ago, as they say we must have used more there too! It just seems like any excuse to take money off you, I’m sure they make it up as every time you phone they give a different explanation as to what the bill is for! I really find it hard to believe we have used so much, there’s only 2 of us in a 2 bedroomed house, out at work all day and we have paid almost £600 for 18months, and apparently still owe more! I can’t see how it’s legal, it’s robbery! and no doubt the re-estimate of the property we lived at in 2006 is done at todays over inflated rates, and not the rates of that year! I GIVE UP!!

  36. Violet Smith says:

    As a widow living alone, is there a scheme whereby I could be paying less for my water as I don’t use as much a a family would do. I am only on the State Pension with a small allowance.

  37. Anthony Sykes says:

    Poor excuse for a company. I recently moved into a brand new house. UU would not transfer my old account to the new property. I rang customer services who could not advise me squat because they could not explain to me why UU would not set up a new water account. All this time now 4 months and I haven’t paid anything to my water rates, and I’m sure the bill is still rising. I once again requested to set up direct debit, then I received a letter with a pre paid card attached? So I rang them up again to query the card and they told me to destroy the card as it was sent in error. To this date I have received no letters, phone calls or anything from UU. Just who the hell is supplying my water. Also I have emailed them numerous times with zero response.

  38. Liz Jackson says:

    I manage a small local charity and UU drive me insane. We try very hard to provide services for disadvantaged people in our area but have to spend days trying to sort out UU bills. At one point we had somehow managed to overpay them – what a mistake to make. Their response was to ‘put a debit onto the account’ and now we owe them money! We’ve had promise after promise – started going through their complaints procedure but all we ended up with was a £25 cheque for out inconvenience! This won’t even cover the phone call costs. Was thinking of going to Ofwat, but it sounds like there isn’t any point. Don’t really want to rate the company at all but don’t have that option! Anyone for Watchdog???

  39. Rudolph Hill says:

    We received our water bill from United Utilities today. Last year we paid £264.70 and this year they are charging £518.29. We do not have a water meter and both of us are retired and on fixed incomes. This is an absolute disgrace for the water company, the government that fails to intervene and the media for not shaming them. How can we be protected from legalised mugging?

  40. J. P. says:

    Having recently been rebanded D from E Council Tax, UU inform me that in 1990 the water rates for my property have been frozen!! Pity the revenue to UU was not also…

  41. Mr D Smith says:

    UU are sooo BAD in calculation. I have moved out from my parents house, I have changed Water bill to my mum’s name. She received water bill for more than £1400 from since we bought house back Jan-2003 until now. I have contact few time and explain but still sending same amount of Bill again. I am really fed-up talking with UU.

  42. Edward Evans says:

    Does anyone of any importance ever read or does anything constructive with the comments of all these disgruntled customers, and when are we going to get a government with any backbone to end this monopoly. A very disgruntled pensioner…

  43. Linda Platt says:

    I was just browsing the net to find information about United Utilities surface water drainage charges. Yes, they even charge us for the rain that falls!! I am amazed how poor their service seems to be from these comments and more amazed they get away with it. Getting things off your chest is all very well, but do any of these comments get back to United Utilities. If not, it seems like everyone is just wasting their breath. Maybe if enough people complained to Offwat (the water ‘watchdog’) they would get so sick of the complaints they MAY actually try to improve services, which is, after all, what everyone wants. Giving UU hefty fines now and again means nothing when it’s the consumer who paid for it by being overcharged in the first place. And guess where the money from the fines goes… not back to the overcharged consumer, oh no, but to the treasury. GREAT!

  44. Lauran Lake says:

    Terrible company!!! Me and my husband have not received a bill for over 4 years and they now wont even send us a bill just a letter stating that we owe £1700.00!! How can you pay something without a bill I ask? They have now passed the debt to a debt collection agency and I am simply not amused!!

  45. Mr David Grant says:

    Can you tell me why our water supply at the moment taste like it has disinfectant in it all the time, it is awful to brew a cup of tea. We get this quite often yet I go to work two miles up the road and the water is ok, please tell me why is this what is going on.

  46. Anon says:

    Yes United Utilities Staff do read your comments. I work for UU and will provide you with some useful information, but please bare in mind, most errors on accounts, are in fact the result of information provided by customers…

    United Utilities Charge Unmeasured Customers on the rateable Value of The Property…

    What is a rateable value?

    Rateable values have always been used by water and sewerage companies to calculate unmetered charges. They were used until 1990 as the basis of the general rate bill payable to the local council. The values were assessed and changed by the Valuation Office of the Inland Revenue and were loosely based on the annual rental value of a property.
    What is the rateable value based on?

    The rateable values we use now were assessed any time between 1973 and 1990. A number of factors were taken into account by the Valuation Office when assessing the potential annual rental value. These included the size of the property and plot, area, general condition and availability of local services.

    We have no details of how individual values were calculated and cannot tell you why similar properties in the same street have slightly different values.

    The government introduced the Community Charge (poll tax) in April 1990 and at that time the Valuation Office stopped assessing or changing rateable values, as the Local Authority now had a new way to charge.

    The community charge was in turn replaced by the council tax and the Valuation Office Agency started assessing Council Tax bands. Unlike the rateable value, these bands are based on the market value of the property, rather than the annual rental value. This means that the two assessments cannot be compared and a change in the Council Tax band does not mean that the rateable values should also be changed.
    Can my rateable value be changed?

    The Valuation Office no longer change rateable values and water companies have never been able to change them, so any home improvements to a property since 1990 are not reflected in the rateable values that we use. In cases where the rateable value is clearly invalid, for example if a property is redeveloped and split into flats, the only option available is to fit a water meter and charge on usage.

    Initially water companies were allowed to use rateable values as a basis of charge until 31 March 2000. However this deadline was removed by changes in the law (The Water Industry Act 1999) which gave companies the right to continue using rateable values to calculate a bill for properties without a water meter. At the same time the law was change to allow household customers the option of having a water meter fitted free of charge.

    FMO- Free Meter Option
    You have to apply for a water meter by application as we need a signature before any job can be booked, Once the form has been received, one of our staff will contact you within a 3 month period to assess if a meter can be fitted. If a meter is unable to be fitted you can then apply to have an Assessed Volume Charge (AVC) Applied to you account.

    I Owe United Utilities Money. Do the care that I can not afford the cost of living? Yes we do….

    Unitied Utilities – Payment Assistance Team. Arrears Allowance Scheme & Water Direct

    This scheme, which is managed by United Utilities, is there to support ongoing payment of water charges by matching a customer’s commitment to their arrears. Its aim is to help people solve their water charge arrears and get back on track in making consistent, regular payments.

    How this works is that customers accepted on the scheme make a guaranteed payment over 13 weeks and if all payments are successfully made then United Utilities contributes the exact same amount to the customer’s arrears.

    For example, if you pay us £3 a week for your current charges and £1 a week to pay off your arrears, you will have paid us £52 in 13 weeks. Because you have paid us £52 we will reduce your arrears by a further £52.

    This scheme is not applicable to all customers, but is an offer to support those customers committed to making future payments. If you think you may qualify and want to be considered for the scheme then please call us on 0845 7462034. Alternatively, you can contact your local Citizens Advice Bureau or Debt Advisor, who will help you be considered for the scheme.

    You must show a willing to pay the current years charge to be accepted on to this scheme, and have genuine financial difficulties, This maybe from having a low income or be in a multi debt situation.

    Water Direct

    The Water Direct Scheme is run in conjunction with the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP).

    The scheme is designed to assist customers who have arrears on their water charges and are in receipt of the following benefits :-

    * Income Support
    * Job Seekers Allowance
    * Pension Credit

    The scheme allows customers who have a minimum of £50.00 arrears to pay a fixed amount towards their arrears and the full amount towards their current years charges directly from their benefit. This helps many customers with budgeting and managing their water and wastewater accounts.

    In order to apply please contact United Utilities on 0845 746 2034, or contact your local DWP office.

    And the final bit of advice that i will give to those customers that are in debt is take ownership of your debt, at the end of the day do you actually have a valid reason for not paying your water bill for x amount of years? if you do then we are here to help!

  47. A Hickie says:

    The price of water is a national disgrace. I put the blame fairly and squarely on the Thatcher years. Talk about selling the family silver, just about every utility was sold off, and the companies are now making millions; and laughing all the way to the bank. I hope that the Tories never get a foothold in power again. Heaven help us if they do. Hard up Pensioner

  48. Andrew Evans says:

    £600 for a year? For 2 people? Ah yes, I called UU – my “rateable value” is £276,000, a figure which was set perhaps 10 years or more ago. Absolute garbage. I bought for £212,500 8 months ago, which was fair, and after years of prolonged price rises. UU play fantasy house prices if you are unmetered, then use their fantasy price to determine your (equally fantasy) bill. There are no alternative suppliers here, and as others say, their dept for rateable values no longer exists (wonder why….) so it cant be reset. Total rip-off.

  49. Amolak Sandhu says:

    Like others, I was shocked when a Debt Collection company wrote to us that we owe money to UU for a water bill. We moved from the previous house in July 2007 and at that time we paid all the bills we received. We informed UU that we are moving our house. Now after a year since we have moved, we received the bill for £536 saying they have taken the reading now. Previously, we received a bill of £17000.00 what a joke? We called the company and we were told that was an error. However, I am more upset that UU has asked Debt Collection company to approach us. During my whole life, I have never had bad credit history and I feel this is great insult. I would really be grateful for any tips how to deal with this terribly company. This is a day time robbery.

  50. A. Nother. says:

    I work for uu and can’t agree enough with the statements made; however, when you call the call centre, remember that we don’t agree with it either! We are only there to pay our bills, just as you all go to work and do the same! If you have a complaint ask for a manager, they get more pay than us! Please remember that we are the customers as well as the workers and we have to pay our bills as you do too! DON’T SHOOT THE MESSENGER!!!

  51. Sue Hawkhead says:

    Absolutely disgusted with united utilities, been flooded twice in 14 months due to drains want updating, having to live in alternative accommodation. Last time it took 4 months to get straight. Said they know what the problem is but will cost too much to put right, in the meantime we have no guarantee that this won’t happen again.

  52. Sylvia Taylor says:

    I missed a water services payment due to being hospitalised. When I rang to offer a double payment over the phone, United Utilities refused saying they had already passed my details onto Concilia, their debt collection company. This was some weeks ago. It turns out they could have taken my payment: they only passed me on to concilia THIS WEEK. I rang this company to discover they are staffed by people who can barely speak English (think it’s a Spanish company) and could not understand what I was trying to say to them. Hope United Utilities CEO is enjoying his over inflated income.

  53. Mike Mackay says:

    I live alone, try very hard to be economical with water as much for environmental reasons as cost, on cost grounds seems a waste of time to economise as cost of water used (according to bill as recorded by meter) is rarely more than about 15% of the total, run off surface drainage is by far the biggest cost. As if this was not annoying enough (especially during long periods without rain) I recently had a bill claiming I had used about 350% more water than usual. UU insisted I pay this amount and that it was based on actual readings not an estimate. This they maintained repeatedly. I duly paid this amount, my next bill six months later showed me to be in credit, as did the bill six months after that. Surprisingly enough the overcharge was not based on a reading despite their repeated insistence, and was an estimate. I am a little curious as to what sort of maths they are using to come up with an estimate so much higher than normal. What can anyone do, they are merely following the example set by ministers, MPs and local officials of “if you do not like what we do – tough, what are you going to do about it” school of accountability.

  54. Leana Ayres says:

    I have a water meter and cannot believe how much this is costing me, I was shocked yesterday when I rang to see if I could go on a monthly budget plan, to discover that I need to pay nearly £300 a month, my estimated water charges for the next 6 months are £2900.00. I couldn’t get hold of anyone last night so I will keep trying today and add a bit to the phone bill too.

  55. Andy Wood says:

    Sent UU a cheque for the year when we moved in and gave them DD details for the next year. They are now claiming that we still owe them the full year and that they cannot find the cheque that has cleared from our account to theirs!!!

  56. Tahir Khan says:

    A two bed house and I am now paying £420 a year, can anyone help me?

  57. Nichola says:

    I recently moved house across town (less than a mile away from my previous address). This property is smaller and there is only 2 of us living there, our bills have gone from £18 to a staggering £63.07 a month. They told me my rate will only go down if I have a water meter installed, otherwise I need to check with the council that they have given the right rates out. Me and my fella work are butts of and we have lived on our own for over 1 year and have nothing but problems with UU and I’m expecting my first child, there is no way we can afford that! £735 a year disgusting!

  58. S Hussain says:

    We were paying £400 every 6 months with United Utilities for 8 years thinking this was because we lived in a larger house with a water meter, upon speaking to a neighbour with same number occupants and same size house who never paid more than £200 for 6 months. I have been complaining for the last 12 months with United utilities but not getting anywhere. We have just received another bill dated April 2008 to October 2008 for £1,444. Of course I will now be passing this to Ofwat but something needs to be done about this ridiculous company who has the worst customer service I have ever experienced!

  59. Teresa O'brien says:

    I have only just realised that I am being charged for surface water drainage to the tune of £67.00. Most people I have spoken to do not even realised they are being charged for the rainwater falling on their home. When I spoke to UU I was told to calm down because everyone pays this. I replied that no residential customer should be paying this as the water does not come through my property and drains into a sewer outside the boundary of property.
    I have contacted Watchdog and my local Liverpool Echo in the hopes that the general public will wake up and do what this country is very poor at, standing up and supporting each other.

    Replies and ideas invited.

  60. Dave Bridge says:

    I wouldn’t even give this excuse for a company 1 star only I had too. A despicable monopoly that treats its customers appallingly. In my experience it makes mistakes and then harasses you for money. I thought that was what the mafia did, maybe they are the same thing. Philip Green and the board of fat cat directors are an absolute disgrace, and are nothing more than crooks in suits!

  61. Fedup Brit says:

    Has anyone that changed to a water meter saved any money? I have 2 children and my wife living in our house and pay £900.00 p.a. in our last house the annual charge was £156.00. UU seem to have no tangible pricing structure and is a company set up for shareholder benefit. Amazed that the Manchester reservoir system was bought through public donation due to the high amount of cholera in the city and then sold but Margret Thatcher in her privitise everything phase… It wasn’t hers to sell and the people of Manchester who owned the water company had no compensation what so ever. If we all stopped paying what could they do realistically.

  62. G Webster says:

    I reported a leak outside a property I own 3 weeks ago. It took a week to even put a barrier round it. According to the neighbours someone came to fix it last week but whatever they did has made it far worse. There is now a constant stream of water running down the street at least 2 or 3 litres per minute is being wasted. I have been informed that the job has now been passed on to Balfour Beaty who need to replace a section and faulty stop tap. And you wonder why your infrastructure charges are so high!

    On a separate matter I have requested a Quote from UU for three new connections for this property. Before I tell you what it is, you must bear in mind that we will have to dig the trench on our own land and lay the pipe to the street ourselves. UU just have to connect to the main. This is approximately half a days work for two men. Are you ready… £2301 and on top a £1731.84 “infrastructure charge” for extra load on the infrastructure.. I know you are all probably vomiting repeatedly by now just like I did when I had to write the cheque. How long are they going to be allowed to get away with this?

  63. Julie Pace says:

    United Utilities they have a nerve. I come under the 1936 sewage act (shared sewage with 3 other properties), have got sewage coming through my ceiling and they don’t want to know. Costing me £400 per year for what!

  64. Craig Walsh says:

    I am frustrated with UU to say the least. Over four years I have been paying £46 a month. UU in their wisdom now think I should pay £111 a month. I have searched high and low in my three bed house and can’t find the olympic swimming pool!
    I have refused to pay until they sort the matter and they are now taking me to court rather than sort it, ridiculous!
    It was even more shocking when a guy read my meter and said in the period I had used 60 cu m and was low. I then got my bill which stated I had used 120cu m!!! Think of a number and double it seems to be UU policy. I am thinking of making a complaint to the police for fraud as I again wait for a recall from a manager. I will looking forward to slapping the photo of my meter next to their bill in front of the judge, maybe UU will explain it then!!! Check everything this company bills!

  65. Lorraine Gillan says:

    I received my very first bill for this year which was red on the 3 of May dated 19/4/08. Three days later a solicitors letter for not paying on time, bill paid in full on 13 May, they then sent me bill for second half a few days later. Despite many phone calls to both parties and paying the remaining second half not usually due till Sept, they pursued me to court, this time for not paying second half on time of which they did not notify me at any stage, a time limit via phone, or bill, as read from bill pay in next few days. I thought I had escaped by paying, I went to Hungary and accrued large mob bill yet they have pursued me anyway, they know I did not receive my green bill.

  66. Clinton says:

    This company is untouchable, they know that we will never go anywhere because they are the only company who can supply water in my area. Their prices are not negotiable and we depend on water daily and we can’t switch to any water company. This company is a nightmare.

  67. Harry Chadderton says:

    How many people know that under section 24 if you share drains with 1 or more properties and are not the first in the line, the drains are the responsibility of United Utilities to clean and maintain. If you did not know and employ private contractors, UU will not recompense you as you did not ask them first. I have taken this problem to my MP and every other consumer council and regulator in the country and no one wants to know although the responsibility rests with UU by law.

  68. Pamela Walker says:

    Well well I am so glad I found this site. I can’t believe this dreadful company is allowed to get away with what amounts to daylight robbery!!
    My story and plight is similar – estimated bill, huge amount, queried this, requested accurate reading, UU came round, said I had no meter they would replace it, requested hold on bill until this resolved.
    Requested amended bill. No bill sent. Letter from debt collection agency! Call centre phoned numerous times, no action, no joy, threats. Next stop head office and CC to my local MP. Let’s get together to fight this!

  69. Pheonix says:

    Help For UU Customers Don’t Have A Clue!?

    Why Is My Bill So High?

    Properties that do not have a water meter fitted, have their charges produced on the Rateable Value of the Property. The RV Was set by the Valuation Office prior to the introduction of the council tax in 1990. Water Companies have always used The Rateable Value of a Property to produce charges and have never had the power to change them. Rateable Values take into consideration the area you live in, local amenities alongside the Annual revenue you would collect if your property was rented out for a full year! So when you come to sell your property the Valuations office is great in bumping up the price of your property! Do we hear you moan then? No! When the law was changed to allow water companies to maintain charges on the RV a new law was also implemented so that water meters could be fitted free of charge. Once a water meter is fitted you are then charges on what actually passes thru the meter, altho you are charges a smaller rate for the sewerage as we are aware not all the water that comes thru the meter passes back out to the sewer, common sense will tell you that you use what you pay for! Lesson number one, reduce your water usage for a reduced bill! I understand that some of you may have concerns over estimated charges for the year ahead, again common sense will tell you that is just what they are. We send these out to enable you to budget towards your water bill based on your last 12 months usage plus any price increase, they are not a demand for payment, You all stress about the estimated charges, well if you are so concerned use less water! simple!

    Both unmeasured and measured customers pay a contribution to Surface Water and Highways Drainage Costs. The law prohibits water companies charging local authorities for this service, therefore we all must pay a contribution to this. Imagine if the law is changed for electricity and you all have to pay for street lighting? Things could be worse. However if your properties surface water does not flow into a public sewer then you may if applicable claim a reduction.

    Please be advised that most complaints stem from lack of information from customers.

    If you are genuine and cannot afford to pay you bill due yo financial difficulties or if you are on a low income then we maybe able to help spread the cost of your arrears over a fixed period of time. Iif in doubt then just ask!

  70. Annyonomous says:

    I work on the leakage side of clean water and UU have put in a new computer system to control the works due to the vast amount of complaints but I am sorry to say it is 10 times worse than the old system at least they know they are wrong but time will tell.

  71. Jack Whos Not Happy With United Utilities says:

    United Utilities is a rubbish company, I was late with payments and they got Mooorcroft Debt Recovery to send me a letter wanting £171.51 within 7 days or else basically. I called Moorcroft to let them know I was on a low income and was told to pay £41 right away and the rest within 8 weeks. Where am I supposed to find this money?

  72. Victoria Doran says:

    I moved into my property in May and was not sure who my supplier was, my landlord must have given my details to the company. I then received a letter of court charges and a bill, the bill was paid as soon as I found out I owed this, till this day I am still getting letter of court charges and bailiff letter, I have tried to contact the company but every time I phone up I am in a queue and then my credit goes, phoned the company and asked if they could ring me back, still waiting!!!

  73. Raymond Mortin says:

    I set you all a challenge, phone up United Utilities and try to get information on who head their organisation in order to escalate a complaint to the top person.
    This is your right as a consumer and customer, however you will find they only give you customer care if your problem is with them then you have nowhere to go. It is like dealing with the mafia and this government should step in, I am now going to offwat.

  74. Roger Howard says:

    My advice, if you’re on a water meter and live in a flat or on an estate, is to check that the serial number on your bill corresponds with your actual supply. Find the meter with your serial number on it (in a grid in the street or in a cupboard in your block of flats, etc) and get someone in your property to turn the taps on and off and see if the meter registers the water usage. If not, you could well be on the wrong meter and are being charged for water used in another property nearby. This has happened twice in my experience (and I’m told by workers in the field that it’s not uncommon). The big problem is that it’s a nightmare to sort out as United Utilities seems to be unconcerned at the hassle and time it takes for you to register the fault and the amount of stress this can cause in rectifying it. United Utilities are disorganised and inept in their customer services, though, if you persist (and approach the Consumer Council for Water for help) you will get it sorted and you may even get a financial ‘gesture of goodwill’. Very very poor service – worth a begrudging 1-star only.

  75. Danny Glover says:

    I have been in my property for only a month an I have received a phone demanding payment and this morning received a letter saying that unless they receive full payment they will take me to county court. How dare they? I will be changing my water supplier asap, they don’t even get a star.

  76. D says:

    I am looking for the engineer who is responsible for the pumps. We are Mather+Platt SA manufacturing original pumps and spares.

  77. Mr Singh says:

    Why don’t every one go to the citizen advice bureau and complain instead of submitting comments?

  78. Mathew Baranowski says:

    I am doing a report on the sewage treatment plant(s) in Liverpool but am having a hard time finding any information on the internet on the flow rates, influent characterisitics, type of system used, etc. I was wondering where I could find such information. Thanks for any help!

  79. Anthony Budworth says:

    UU took me to court for non payment, for a part of the amount I had never been billed.
    I know this as these bills came to my x wife’s house in her name. I had contacted UU several times over my bills to ask why and where the amount they were claiming was from. You guessed, no reply. In the county court however after some difficulty they were ordered to give me copies of the original bills. They came, all with my name on but they made one mistake on one of the forgeries they had put my current post code on a bill with the address of my ex wife. Can you believe it but it’s true one corrupt company with corrupt employees.
    I won the case, had all my bills wrote off, but they were never taken to task. Watch out for them, they will do similar to you.

  80. Gillian Robinson says:

    Having just taken over a small salon in North West I shocked to the core to learn I have to £531 standard charge plus extra charges for what goes through the meter, this is double what the previous occupant paid. Three phone calls later I still have not had a reasonable explanation why the charges have gone up 100%. This company should be dragged through the courts for profiteering at the expense of the public. I would gladly do this if I had the knowledge of how to proceed.

  81. Victoria Shaw says:

    Please can you tell me how long the electricity has to be off whilst work is being done, before I can claim for a lost food in my fridge?

  82. Donna Hodgkinson says:

    My bill has been raised from £115.00 per month to £170 per month. When questioned as to why the increase it was as a result of Highway and rainfall charges.
    Firstly the highway has nothing to do with me and secondly the rain is an act of God – we have to pay for his actions too?
    The increase is absolutely out of line and to top it off folks it does not end there. It seems there will be another large increase next year too. It’s time for everyone to take note and contact offwatt.

  83. Michael says:

    I live in a 3 bedroom semi. 2 of us live here. It’s £700 a year for water. We both shower each morning and have a bath at least 3 times a week. Is that fair?????

  84. Nicola Carter says:

    I wish there would be a no star option. UU are the most useless company there is. If you ask why am I charged £435 per annum for water used by two people when last year a family of 5 paid the same and two are hardly going to use the same amount of water, the answer ‘is that’s how it is’. When you ask why can’t the sum be changed accordingly, the answer ‘is it doesn’t work like that.’ When I point out that it says on their own web site that terraced properties should pay £351 not £435, the answer is ‘You must have misread it.’ Water meter is not any more trustworthy, with this company anyway. Who was the fool who thought of the bright idea of introducing rateable value? He should be drowned.

  85. Keith Woods says:

    For people with a suspect meter readings and charges, please try this test, get one person to keep an eye on the meter and make sure if no water is being used in registers nothing.
    Then, and this is not a joke get another person or yourself to turn on a kettle or microwave and see what the meter does with the appliance turned on.
    Some meters are seriously affected by electric appliances being used and can register extremely high water usage readings which translate into charges, which is obviously not right.

  86. Joanna Siemieniec says:

    I moved to my property in Nov 2006. I was leaving in my old address about 6 months. My old landlord have to given my details to the company. I then get a letter of previous charges bill for old property when I was leaving before about £1100. I tried to contact the company but every time I phone up I am in a queue and then my credit goes, phoned the company and asked if they could ring me back, still waiting. This is big mistake, because this is not my bill:(((

  87. Christopher Mcdonald says:

    I had a burst beneath my kitchen sink, below the stop tap and I phoned UU to inform them of this problem. They said it was nothing to do with them, they refused to call out as the leak was in my house and we were told to get ourselves a plumber to deal with the leak but the leak could not be solved until UU turned the water off as we have no individual stop on on the main footpaths. So our water continued to flow until the next day as we had to get a firm called spettro to deal with the leak only then would UU come out to find the stop tap so the leak could be repaired, as a result of this our kitchen has been ruined completely and the water has penetrated the concrete floor and seeped under to the foundations.
    They ask all of us to save water but are not helpful when it comes to stopping a flood. We are very unhappy with the service.

  88. Roland Gilhead says:

    Here’s a tip, if you’re on a water meter DO NOT PAY BY DIRECT DEBIT. It benefits the company, not you unless you called £5 discount per year a benefit. Your charges will be estimated based on the average of the number of occupiers in the property. The water companies have no idea how much water you are going to be using so can only estimate. You wont get the £5 direct debit discount but you only pay your bill when your meters read which is every six months. Oh and if your meter reading turns out to be an estimate (not all meters can be read remotely) call them up with an actual reading to have an amended bill. The prices the companies charge have been agreed with the regulator OFWAT. Don’t waste your time calling the company to argue about the cost with a low paid employee who quite frankly could not give a HOOT about your bill. And the earlier comment by someone ranting about the Highways Drainage charge really tickled me. That person said the highways have nothing to do with her. But she forgets she does use the highway be that by car, bus or foot. If the water companies did not clear the highway drains and sewers who would? Everyone in some shape or form uses the highways PERIOD!! Also the comical fact in relation to Surface Water reduction. Even if you succeed with your claim you do not get years and years of monies back. The companies only have to reimburse the last 12 months charges, as agreed with our regulators. If the companies had to give monies back going back donkeys years then everyone’s bills would have to increase to cover these costs. That’s how businesses work. Water is not Free. It costs money to ensure you get the best quality drinking water in the world. On average it costs about £2.50 for 1000 litres of water. Go to your supermarket and see how much a 100 litres cost! Finally think about it, you’re using water for free for 6 months. The companies then send you a bill. Can you go to Tescos for 6 months of shopping without paying?? I don’t think so.

  89. Christopher Massey says:

    United Utilities fitted a water meter to my property 7 weeks ago and since then I have had bits of dirt in my water rendering it unusable and not suitable for consumption. After testing United Utilities have now said that the problem is my pipework that leads from the meter to the first point in the house (kitchen tap). They have said that this is a lead pipe and they are saying that when they fitted the meter they put in a new valve/tap at the meter which has created stronger pressure which is disturbing the pipework and thus releasing corrosive debris and possibly lead from within the pipe. They are now washing their hands of it and saying it is my problem. i can’t fathom how I can be responsible for a problem they have caused? Had the meter not been fitted I would not have had what is now coming up to 8 weeks with unusable water.

    I’ve found dealing with them and their contractors very frustrating. I found myself doing all the leg work and chasing as there seemed to be little communication between them and when there was it was patchy at best, leaving me to fill in the blanks. The metering contractor H20 bad mouth UU and UU bad mouth H20.

    I am incensed that UU have put me through this and I am shocked at the number of complaints on this site. How can they be getting away with this consistently bad service and profiteering?

  90. Tudor Manor says:

    It is friday 14th august 2009, I am sitting waiting to speak to the customer advisor that the phone keeps telling me is available. I have my doubts and I am wondering how many skeletons have been found with a phone stuck to their bones and that very pleasant but totally inefficient voice blasting out to the deceased. My time is now 35 minutes and waiting and waiting and waiting… I am presuming that 1 is as low as you can go for a satisfaction rating!!!!

  91. Russell Dearden says:

    I would be very interested in customers and employees of United Utilities who have had problems with the following:

    CLO’s and Network Owners who have had problems with WFM, raising further work, synchronising their toughbooks, issuing letters and raising DF notices. I would be interested in hearing your comments regarding solving these issues. What has been your response from management etc. Since November 2008. (Anonymously if you prefer)

    Customers, I would very grateful if you would let me know if you have had to wait excessively long periods of time for appointments and have appointments cancelled, ignored, duplicated and generally how the appointments system has dealt with your complaints since November 2008.

  92. Russell Dearden says:

    Reply to Raymond Morton.

    The Chairman of United Utilities address is:
    Chairmans Office
    Dawson House
    Liverpool Road
    Great Sankey Warrington, WA5

    If you escalate your complaints to the above, OFFWATT automatically are informed of your letter and UU have to respond within 5 days to acknowledge receipt of your letter and have to send you a detailed reply within 15 days addressing each of your concerns. I hope this is of use to those who are having difficulty complaining. Chairmans letters generally succeed when other methods fail.

  93. Sarah says:

    I work for UU and we try our best to gave the best Customer Service but sometimes you have got to think how we feel at the other end of the phone. We just work for UU, we don’t do the bills etc. Just think who your talking to and put yourselves in our shoes and do our job for one day because it is hard.

  94. Katherine Andrews says:

    I rented a one bedroomed flat for 6 months. I’m very economical with water, only washing up every couple of days (only me there!) and frequently showering at the gym. Towards the end of my tenancy I finally received my water bill-where UU informed me that the annual charge on my property is £720. Yes, £720 for a one bed flat. I rang them up, whereupon I was given the party line about the rateable value of the property. The nice young man on the phone then told me to have a water meter fitted because I shouldn’t really be paying more than £20 a month, rather than the £60 I was being asked for. Had they sent me a bill or any indication of what I was to be charged when I moved in then I would have had a meter fitted immediately. Now apparently I have absolutely no leg to stand on and am expected to cough up the £360 for my 6 months tenancy. Well, they can take me to court if they want but I absolutely refuse to pay such an obscene sum and I will happily fight it every step along the way. They have had £180 out of me which I believe is a perfectly reasonable sum, and they will NOT get another penny.

  95. Rach A says:

    I’ve got to say united utilities have the worst customer service I have ever known. They are bad mannered and plain rude!! I work in a call center for a gas and electric company and if we spoke to customers like they do we’d be sacked! They need to get staff who do the work they are supposed to do!

  96. Helen Eren says:

    Moved in Sept 2009 and arranged a weekly direct debit to spread the charges, very helpful, first 6months @ £6.79 a week for a 3bed detached 1 ensuite, master bathroom and downstairs wash room, garden tap etc :) I was happy… 6mth contract was renewed last week, no worries. New bill just came now :( for the next 12mth its gone up to £11.32 a week!! Is that still a good amount for the house?

  97. Iain Lasseter says:

    Have just found UU have been billing myself for someone else for the same bill. Totally useless single visit from UU who discovered nothing and only found out by pushing myself that they had taken a metered feed from my feed and still billed me. I cannot express my dislike of this company in words I have spent many hours only to discover that there IS NO DEPTH TO HOW BAD THEY CAN BE!!! Why do these people have a monopoly????

  98. Crying Wave says:

    We all live in UU area come on water is not free. Most of us always have delaying tactics when it comes to paying bills. As much possible we will not pay the water bill unless we receive disconnection letter or any court letter. BILLS ARE PAYABLE UPON RECEIPT; IF YOU WILL LOOK THERE IS NO DUE DATE.
    We always say that we didn’t receive the main bill but how come we receive the disconnection letter? Funny isn’t it… business is a business…

  99. Zeb says:

    I can feel for the customer service staff there – but there’s some incompetence going on there.

    Currently they want to take me to court for a debt which doesn’t exist (my landlord has been paying the water) and for a time when I didn’t even live in the property.

    Have had absolutely no joy via the usual channels for complaints – I phone up, they say they know what the problem is and it’ll all be rectified but a couple of days later yet another letter saying I owe them money. Been going on for around 8 months now.

    Shall definitely be claiming costs. Can’t believe they keep doing this – either there’s some serious mess up between customer services and bill departments, or they think I’m going to pay a lot of money to them which I don’t owe them.

    Awful company.

  100. Don Dempsey says:

    My water pressure varies between 0.5 bar and 6 bar. High is OK but when it drops to the low level it is impossible to take a shower. The problem is the variance is unpredictable. I live in Caldy in the Wirral and I have discovered it is a “Pressure Reduced Area”. I have had 3 inspections and all claim it is OK but iut isn’t. How do I escalate this to get a solution? Why will no one in UU “own the problem?

  101. Anonymous says:

    I knew I would not be occupying a property for twelve months. I rang United Utilities who told me they would cut off the water supply and there would be no bill to pay. I asked if that was true and they said yes. Twelve months later – after returning to the country – I find that United Utilities have taken me to Court and received judgment against me for nonpayment.

    Quite simply they could have told me that the bill would still be due. I would have payed it a year ago.

    So now United Utilities are obliged to write to me every time they wish to communicate. I have written and withdrawn their “right” to use a call centre. Funnily enough, it was their solicitor that suggested this.

  102. Mrs F To Be says:

    Where I live has been flooded 3 times in 20 days… we are still waiting for compensation from our cars being written off and is just a joke – what do I do buy a new car for it to be written off again! – I cannot afford the stress, financial pressure and worry that it could happen again – once is bad enough – twice is shocking but 3 is unbelievable and this one was the worst!!!!!!!

  103. John Barron says:

    I recently converted an old garage into two flats. As we were still using the garage we built on top of the garage and continued to use the garage until we decided to turn it into the second flat. UU came and fitted a new supply with a water meter to the upstairs flat. They charged an absolute fortune for this work, however as no one else can do it we just had to pay up! No bills have ever been generated to this new property and the bills keep coming to the garage. After possibly 20 or 30 calls they say they have no record of this and should have been informed by the local council officially about the change and to prove it had the necessary planning permission. The local council have emailed them on two separate occasions and sent me copies of the emails to prove that planning permission was given and that the building is bona fide. We just cannot get through to UU for someone to change it. Every time we get through, we find a very nice person who says they cannot do it, “I will put you through to metering” or some other department. They never ever seem to be able to connect to this department. They then give you a direct number which is answered by a machine asking for the reference number of the property. As the property has NO reference number we can’t answer that question. The machine says “hold,and we will contact an advisor” or similar words. The phone has been ringing now since I started typing this and the clock on my phone says 22minutes 41 seconds and still counting. I am hanging up now and the time on the clock is now …….25 Minutes. Pathetic 0 out of 5

  104. Evelyn Morris says:

    I am a single senior citizen living in a one b/roomed flat.. 12 months ago I had a meter fitted. As I was led to believe it would save me money. I find 12 months on I am out of pocket by over a £100 + a year. A big con.. the d.d payments have shot up from £4.51 a week to £7.97.. why did it take 12months for the company to inform me that my consumption had increased.. they allowed me to get into debt.. I am going back to rateable meter..

  105. A. Non says:

    I too work for United Utilities in the billing department!
    I still don’t understand what all of the moaning is about, if you read the post… Posted by Pheonix, 3rd January 2009, all will become clear!!
    If you’re struggling financially and are genuine, call us for the arrears allowance scheme or trust fund. If you are cross on the phones then how are we supposed to help you?? Geeze!!

  106. David Hughes says:

    For those living in the North West of England and buying water from United Utilities, it must make you angry to pay high prices for something that falls quite freely from the sky in your region to a company that cannot provide storage of enough of that rain to avoid Hosepipe bans so early in the summer. Their priorities are Directors high salaries first, shareholders big dividends second, and way, way, down at the bottom – customers.

  107. Christine Monaghan says:

    Please tell me if being on a ”PAYMENT PLAN” I am funding United Utilities employees HOLIDAYS, BONUSES OR CHAMPAIGN AT THE CHRISTMAS PARTY?

  108. H says:

    The water board should take more consideration for filtering the water. The many prescription medicines in the water is beyond a joke.

  109. Bernadette Mather says:

    I would like to ask there was a major leak in the parr, st.helens area and we had no water for two days, no hot water and no pressure at first. Myself and my young son had used the water for oral hygiene and the water seemed ok, when I flushed the wc the water was brown, since this me and my son have had vomiting and diarrhea. Also I have contacted friends and family in the area and they have been ill. We need to know this water is safe and what it give us, and will we get a reduction off our water bill due to this?

  110. Ruth Hastie says:

    My Saga

    I am absolutely bloody furious with United Utilities, I have been given the run around since the beginning of July and it has seriously got beyond a joke.
    At the start of July, I had raw sewage in my cellar, the following day someone came out to sort out the sewage and the day after that someone came out to find out why the sewage had come in the cellar in the first place. Great service I thought, little did I know.
    The end result was tree roots had broken the pipe, a blockage had occurred and the sewage had flowed back down into the cellar. The fix apparently is to put in a new manhole cover and cut back the tree roots and fix the pipe. Given that no one was exactly clear as to how long the blockage had been building up for, whether it would reoccur quickly or not, I thought the work would be done relatively quickly. I left it about two or three weeks to make the first phonecall and was told that the job had been sent to Enterprise so they could install the manhole cover and someone would ring me the following day and tell me when this would happen. Of course, no call was forthcoming, about a week and a half later I phoned again and was told that Enterprise were the bad guys and someone would ring me back once they had spoken to them probably the following day by midday. Of course that day came and almost went so I phoned again to first ask why my call hadn’t been returned and when exactly was someone going to phone me, the call was escalated or some such phrase to complaint level (funny I thought the call the day before had been a complaint but what do I know) and someone would phone me back. If I remember rightly no one called and I phoned yet again and was told it would go further up the complaint levels. This time somebody did call back and told me that the person concerned was off until the following week but would call me. That same day I had another call to say the work would be completed within the next two weeks (this was around the start of August), then the following day someone else phoned and told me the same thing. Two weeks and one day later someone from United Utilities did indeed turn up, unfortunately he was the guy who cut back the roots and fixed the pipe, as opposed to the guy who installs a new manhole cover so that said rootcutter and pipe fitter can access said roots and pipes. This was blamed on two week timetables and four week timetables and happens a lot apparently. I either phoned United Utilities that day or the following day and guess what “Someone will call you back tomorrow”. Of course you must know by now what happened, yes absolutely bugger all.
    Which brings me to this week, on Tuesday I summon up some degree of enthusiasm to start the process again. I spoke to a very nice man who promised me a call back by the end of the day or by the following morning. I have to say I viewed that with some degree of scepticism so almost fell off my chair in shock when I got a call a mere 30 minutes later. It is at this point I find out that the request for a manhole cover has never actually been made, raised or however you phrase things. I was stunned, how come it has taken this long before someone actually read the notes properly and did their job? Anyway yet another surprise I get a call to say that the workmen would be arriving to do the work (not sure whether just manhole cover or manhole cover and tree roots but still struggling not to lose the will to live in any event) today, 8th September 2010.
    Now wait for it…..did they turn up? I guess you know the answer to that one, if you don’t you really should pay attention, so on the phone once more. At about 3pm I speak to yet another customer service person who yet again reads my file, they confirm the job is due to be done on 8th September 2010 and someone would look into it and call me back by the end of the day. It’s now 10.20pm, am assuming that I am not getting that phone call then!
    They may turn up tomorrow, they may not, I may get a return phone call tomorrow, I may not, I may get more sewage in my cellar tomorrow, I may not hence the reason why I am bloody furious.
    I am in poor health, as a customer I should not be treated like this, I worry that more sewage is going to come in, I have water coming in elsewhere in the cellar and I am sure it is the result of a different damaged drain but can’t face starting the whole process all over again. I have had compensation for the sewerage problem but I feel that I deserve some further recompense for all the hassle I have had since.
    I am working on the basis that sod’s law says that once this letter is in the post then the workmen will turn up and the work will get completed but quite frankly I will not be holding my breath

  111. A. Peng says:

    I live in Northwest and I am registered with UU. This supplier should be removed. My water bill has risen every year, this years it is increased nearly £150 a year. I am feeling like I am being legally robbed.

  112. Lyn-Marie says:

    I have been having problems with United Utilities ever since we changed from direct debit to telephone banking and card payments two years ago. It seems they only know one way to resolve a problem, cut off your water and take you to court, despite you being registered with them as a vulnerable customer.

    We started having payment difficulties, partly as our water bill doubled and partly as my husband had to give up work with cancer and incontinence. We went from paying £21.00 a month to a demand for £38.00 a month. Why? They put in new pipes, and someone has to pay for all of the leaks that they had while they did this. Put new pipes in the street mind, not our house!

    We could not keep this up, along with many other bills so we got threatening letters despite paying what we had previously and telling them our problems.

    I was told to claim Water Sure and to go on a special tarriff and they sent cards and set the new one at £25.00. Then they sent a bill for the year, and could not cope with the fact we were not paying direct debit. We were still making the monthly payment they set us on, so what was the problem? No-one seemed to know. We got told we had to go at least £200 in arrears to get some sort of help from the government and how much in arrears where we: £45.00 in credit!

    Somehow we have now managed to get into arrears; £5.00 in arrears, but that does not count, so they agreed a payment scheme of £20.00 and sent us cards instead.

    Then in March their legal department threatened to smash the door down and put a water meter in by force. The CAB stopped that nonsense and again they started the ball rolling to claim the help from the government and this time they told us we qualified. Two months communication went back and forth and nothing was sorted out and they said they would take us to court. Finally I demanded a call from a manager. A lady called Valarie rang me back and sorted it all out. She said we were not in enough arrears to claim the government help as we were only £20 in arrears. She put us on a social tarriff which is the same thing and sent us a new form that we filled in with our health problems and put us on a monthly budget scheme of £20.00. We received an apology, compensation and it was all in writing and we have a new agreement with them. So why 6 months later do I get another demand from their stupid legal team demanding £383.30 by 14 days or they will add another £100 to it for court costs, take me to court and if they get a judgement, they will add more costs to it?>

    I was outraged: I made one phone call this morning: Take me to court and I will produce the letter from this Valarie and their managers apology and the agreement and may-be I will get a judgement against them and I am not paying it!

    We are Extra Care Customers, but they do not care and they do not pay up under the Guarantee Scheme either despite not responding to me for two months last time!

    What will my next move be?

    I really do not know, but I am not paying more than the agreed £20.00 a month and they can take me to as many courts as they wish. I have an agreement which is legally binding and there is nothing they can do about it.



    • J cook says:

      Keep at them, they are Fraudsters of the highest level, WE do not have a refund system, when you ask for a refund after being over charged, the company is run by Con men.

  113. kevin lloyd says:

    can not get hold of any body

  114. R STEWART says:

    Why are the WATER RATES rising so quickly? Ther are now 50% of COUNCIL TAX. I have a friend who works for United Utilities and he says that he spends a lot of each day doing very little. Is it not time that these companies were looked at more closely?

  115. john says:

    OFWAT have you ever heard of it ?? it allows or prevents price rises within the water industry these company cant just decide how much they raise prices, they are monopoly’s and as such need to justify all prices, unlike GAS and ELEC who have OFGEN WHO DONT APPEAR TO DO MUCH AT ALL as they say you can change suppliers if your unhappy

  116. Brian says:

    U.U turn off OAP’s water services without even warning us, we need water for our central heating, ie; no water no heat, I have now been without water for THREE hours, on a Saturday of all days, surely they could have done this work during the normal working week.

    U.U get your fingers out !!

  117. Mr & Mrs J M Hill says:

    As we are just two people (retired) living in a 4 bedroomed house, we pay £67.27 per month for water rates – I think this is very excessive, especially as a neighbour who lives by herself in a 4 bedroomed house, only pays £21.00 per month. I think we pay the most water rates in our road, why?

    • Mr. Kelly says:

      Ever heard of a water meter?? It would appear that your neighbour has and that they are only paying for the water that they use!.

    • J cook says:

      Get a water meter fitted, it’s free and wil reduce your bill by 50% UU is a RIP off company, run by fat cats, they do very little but fight like hell if you ask for a refund I call it Fraud on a grand scale.

  118. Mrs B. Dixon says:

    Cumbria along with Northumberland is the wettest county in England, why then are our water rates among the highest. The national average water bill is something like £360, my bill is nearly £700, there are only the two of us. I have now applied to go on a water meter, but this is just one more thing to worry about. Why can’t Cumbria sell it’s excess water and reduce the local bills, after all it is a commodity that is worth a lot of money.

    • Steve says:

      No matter how much rain falls in whatever part of the country this ‘raw’ water still has to be treated toa potable standard in order for you to be able to drink it. If your bill is £700 then you will be paying on the rateable value of your property rather than using a water meter. We are a family of four in the NW with a dish washer and washing machine on most days, bath, shower etc. and pay £24 per month through being on a meter. This is for both water supply and sewerage. Compare this to our gas and electricity of £56 and £78 per month I would hardly call my water bill excessive. Try a water meter then you will only pay for what you use. It’s a no brainer.

  119. Kiki says:

    We are with UU. We are a couple living in a 1 bedroom flat, both out at work all day, have only 1 bathroom, 1 toilet, no garden (so no hosepipe) and use the washing machine 3 times a week. We pay monthly by DD and our water bills for our flat are very expensive, our friends pay less for a house/garden were more water is used. Why is that, we are thinking of asking for a water meter. Has anyone had one fitted who lives in a flat (our building is a conversion of 4 flats)? Did it work out any cheaper?

  120. Jayne says:

    To Mr and Mrs J M Hill – It appears you either have a water meter and use a lot of water for two people or have a leak…..or do not have a water meter and are billed on rateable value. I suggest if you do not have a water meter to get one installed as this will measure your water bill on how much you actually use and not on what the government rate your property to be worth. This will explain your neighbours difference in bill price. One will have a meter and the other will not, in the most likely circumstance.

  121. John TYe says:

    I cannot for the life of me understand how these water bills are calculated. I get sick of reading how people are up in arms because their bill as gone up £31 to make their total bill £430/year when I am paying £600+, I live in a detached dormer just me and the wife both pensioners and not metered. There is no shortage of rain in my area so am I paying someone elses bill. The trouble is you can’t just change suppliers like with the other utilities its just one big con.. Angry of Golborne…

  122. David Heaney says:

    The answer is probably to get a meter installed. That way, you’ll be charged for the water you use, not based on the rateable value of your house. A few years ago, we did and our bill almost halved from £400+ to £200+.

  123. Robert Benson says:

    I am wondering why oh why when I live in a one bedroom flat and my brother lives in a 3 bedroom house his bill is nearly £150 cheaper each year, we live less than a mile from each other.I am on a very low income So with this issue I decided to get a meter as I am a low user of water, only to find that I now have to pay a £150 standing charge?!!! I dont have to pay it for Gas and Electricity?? “Or its included in the rate per unit” Why does not the water company not do this?

    • J cook says:

      United Utilites are the typical rip off company formed when our leaders privatised the industries. Why? So it created a manopoly for the fat cats again.
      They overcharged me for 3y ears the amount is over £1,000, Sorry they say but we do not have a refund policy, FRAUD.

  124. Geoff says:

    Anyone still paying under the rateable value system are wasting money hand over fist!! Have a meter installed, it’s free! Three years ago when I had my meter installed my annual bill dropped from £590 to £212!!! The last two have both been under £230 . I have saved nigh on £1000 by having a meter installed. Get one fitted…….. and no I do not work for United Utilities.

    • Smile says:

      Debt consolidation won’t solve your main problem. You need to get on a strict, written budget and spend less than you earn. Shred your credit cards and pay cash for everything. Once you control your spending, the debt repayment becomes easy.

  125. scouser says:

    I was thinking of buying a water butt to collect rain water from my roof, I was told if I install one the water board will charge me for doing so, can someone tell me if this is correct as it sounds stupid to me but knowing the water companies it wouldn’t surprise me.

  126. scouser says:

    Regarding water bills I used to live in a one bedroom flat with no garden, my water bill was higher than my brother who owns a 4 bedroom detached house with a garden on four sides in the same area, when I inquired about it I found that they take the rateable value of the 79 flats and divide it equally, disgusting.

  127. Cathy says:

    I am a new user of UU water having moved north 6 months ago. For two days I have had to buy bottled water for drinking as the stuff coming out of the tap tastes and smells of TCP/bleach – disgusting. Have there really been no comments on this page since Feb 2013?

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