Open Water Frequently Asked Questions
Frequently Asked Questions

Q. What is Open Water?

Open Water is the name of the industry-wide programme that is responsible for the introduction of the new commercial retail market.

Q. What organisations are involved in Open Water?

The following organisations are involved:

These organisations have been working alongside market participants that consist of existing water and wastewater companies and new entrant Retailers.

Q. Why are the changes in England not happening in Wales?

The Welsh Government has responsibility for deciding the scope of the competitive market in Wales, and has decided that the competitive retail market will not be expanded in Wales. Only business customer sites using more than 50 megalitres of water per year are eligible to switch Retailer.

Q. If I use less than 50 megalitres of water each year can I switch Retailer?

No - only Welsh Water’s largest business customer sites using more than 50Ml per  year are able to switch their water Retailer.

Q. How do I know if I am using more than 50 megalitres each year?

To find out whether you use more than 50 Ml please contact us using the general enquiry form.

Q. Can I switch if my premises is based in Herefordshire?

If your sites are in the Herefordshire area and you are a Welsh Water customer, the Welsh region regulations apply, even if the sites are based in England.  If the sites use more than 50 megalitres of water a year they can switch Retailer.  If they do not exceed this threshold, Welsh Water continues to be the Retailer and the Wholesaler.

Q. What if Severn Trent provide my wastewater services?

As Severn Trent is governed by rules that apply in England, business customers who receive water services from Welsh Water and wastewater services from Severn Trent are eligible to switch Retailer for their wastewater, but can only switch Retailer for their water services if they meet the 50 megalitre threshold.

Q. Can I switch my household water services?

Only business customers who exceed the threshold can switch.  Household customers can’t switch Retailer in England or Wales.

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