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A Guide to Establishing Water Service

The City of Fullerton Water Utility is eager to meet your water needs. The following are some commonly asked questions about establishing water service.

(Note: The following pertains to residential services and small commercial projects. On larger projects, water fees, deposits, and bonds are included with the overall fees, deposits, and bonds. See "Tracts," "Parcel Maps")

When do I need to upgrade my water meter or service or install a new water service?
The Water System Management staff will review your project and determine the required water improvements based upon your proposed water demand, type of water usage (domestic and irrigation), and the layout and location of your job site.
Do I need plans?
This depends on the size of your project, but for a small (2" or smaller) meter upgrade or small (2" or smaller) water service we normally do not require plans, and can process your water permit usually within three working days from the receipt of the completed application packet. This time is needed in order to schedule a water system technician to verify the existing field condition. Larger projects require plans signed by a Registered Civil Engineer.
How long does it take to get plans reviewed and get a water permit?
A small service or meter upgrade can often be processed within three working days from the receipt of the completed application packet. Larger projects can usually be checked within five to ten working days. A Water Utility representative can give you a time estimate once he has assessed your project.
What are the City's fees for water service?
Again, this depends on the size of your project. A Water Utility representative can give you an exact figure once he has reviewed your job and the final scope of work is clearly defined. A complete list of fees and typical cash bond amounts is available at the Engineering Counter or by calling (714) 738-6887.
I want to add a room with two bathrooms onto my house. I've been told that before I can get my building plans signed, I need to post a $5,000 bond for the Water Utility. What does this mean?
The City works diligently to ensure its system is up to current standards. Prior to issuing any building permits in the City of Fullerton, the Water Utility must review the project site to make sure the water connections serving the property are properly sized and meet current Water Utility requirements. If a new service or service upgrade is needed, the Water Utility will collect a bond to cover the cost of the work. When the required improvements to the water connection are completed, the bond is refunded.
Why does the Water Utility collect a Plan Check and Inspection fee?
The Water Utility collects this fee to cover engineering review, inspection, and administrative costs associated with your project.

In addition, should your project tap into a City-installed water main (versus a water main installed by a developer), you may be required to reimburse the City for a prorated cost for installation of this main. This fee is called a "Front Footage Fee."

Why do I need to have a separate "Excavation Permit" along with a separate excavation bond and fee to install a water service?
The excavation permit and associated bond and fee cover the excavation work connected with installing a water service - i.e. the removal and replacement of the street and sidewalk. This permit is issued by the General Engineering Private Development Division of the Public Works Department, and is issued at the same time you pull your Water Permit.
How do I get started?
Stop by the Engineering Counter on the second floor of Fullerton City Hall, and ask to speak to a representative from Public Works Department Water Division.

Or, if you prefer, call us at (714) 738-6887 and we'll be happy to go over our requirements.

We hope this information has answered some of your questions about water service in the City of Fullerton. For a full list of Water Utility fees, or for any additional questions, visit or call:

Public Works Department
Water Division
Fullerton City Hall - 2nd Floor
303 W. Commonwealth Ave.
Fullerton, CA 92832
(714) 738-6887

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