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Fire Hydrant Permit Program

The water system and the water it provides to Baltimore County residents is owned and maintained by Baltimore City. The County is responsible for the use of fire hydrants in its jurisdiction by the public. The Fire Hydrant Utilization Policy (PDF) must be followed and a fee is charged by Baltimore County to use one of these fire hydrants to fill swimming pools, irrigate landscaping, wash down construction sites, etc.

Permit Process and Instructions

In order to receive a Fire Hydrant Connection Permit, you must determine the meter size you need. Then, visit the address listed below to fill out a request. The Bureau of Utilities is a one-stop shop for fire hydrant meters, and will process permit applications and accept payments.

The preferred payment method is a check. However, the Bureau of Utilities will accept exact change if a customer wants to pay with cash. The Bureau does not accept credit cards. If a customer wants to pay via credit card, they will be directed to the Baltimore County Cashier's Office. Please note that the Cashier’s Office only accepts Discover.

Bureau of Utilities
Fullerton Complex
4421 Bucks Schoolhouse Road, Suite 100
Baltimore, Maryland 21237
Email: utilities@baltimorecountymd.gov
Phone: 410-887-1885
Fax: 410 887-1886
TTY Users call Maryland Relay at 1-800-735-2258.

To obtain a permit, you must provide the following:

  • Company or individual’s name
  • Contact person
  • Full address of business or residence
  • Phone number
  • Hydrant location (provide nearest cross streets)
  • Security deposit

A sample of the Fire Hydrant Connection Permit (PDF) and regulations is provided here only as a reference. The actual permit is not available online.

  • If you request a three-inch meter, the Bureau of Utilities will provide you with a list of pre-determined hydrant locations from which to choose. 
  • The security deposit amount will vary depending on the size of the meter being requested. The security deposit rates, rental fees and price per gallon are available on the Fire Hydrant Connection Permit.

Meter Sizing Guide

  • Three-quarters-inch Meter – Garden hose end used for general water, such as lawns, flower beds and general construction use.
  • One-inch Meter—Pipe Nipple – Construction or contractor use, such as construction site dust control, large scale watering and filling tanks under 500 gallons.
    • Note: Three-quarters-inch and one-inch meters may be used on any public fire hydrant in Baltimore County.
  • Two-inch Meter—Pipe Nipple – Construction or contractor use, such as construction site washdowns, street washdowns, filling tanks 500 gallons or larger, and swimming pools.
  • Three-inch Meter (Two-and-one-half-inch NST – Male Fitting) – Used to fill tanker trucks over 2,500 gallons. Tanker trucks must be inspected and approved by the Bureau of Utilities prior to a meter being issued.

The Bureau of Utilities will issue you a fire hydrant meter along with the appropriate wrench and instructions for proper use.

Return Policy  

Meter permits are good for a maximum of six months. Prior to the end of the six month period, return the meter and the wrench to the Bureau of Utilities.

  • The Bureau will test and verify that the meter is in good working order and determine the water usage while you wait. You will be advised if the meter is not in good working order.
  • You will be invoiced for the rental, water consumption and any equipment repairs.
  • Any remaining security deposit will be returned to you.

Failure to return the meter and wrench by the expiration date of the permit will result in having your hydrant water usage privileges revoked and initiating collection activities.

Note: Using a fire hydrant meter with an expired permit is a criminal offense.

Renewal

If you wish to renew the permit, return the meter to the Bureau of Utilities by the end of the six month period so they can test and verify that the meter is in good working order and determine water usage. Your security deposit will remain intact and you will be invoiced for the rental, water consumption and any equipment repairs for the prior six months.

Payment

Upon final return, rental fees, water consumption charges and fees to repair broken equipment will be deducted from the security deposit you provided when you applied for the permit. If your charges exceed the amount of your security deposit, you will be billed for that amount. If you are to receive a refund, Baltimore County Government will issue a check for the difference.

More Information

If you have questions or need additional information, please contact:

Bureau of Utilities
Storeroom
4421 Bucks Schoolhouse Road, Suite 100
Baltimore, Maryland 21237
Email: utilities@baltimorecountymd.gov
Phone: 410-887-1885
Fax: 410-887-1886

 
Revised March 4, 2019         

 

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