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County offices are closed on Monday, October 9, for Indigenous Peoples' Day.

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 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, follow the process below. All permits are issued in person at our office.

  1. Determine the size meter that you need.
  2. Prepare the following information that you will need to obtain a permit:
    1. Company or individual’s name
    2. Insurance certificate of indemnification
    3. Contact person
    4. Full address of business or residence
    5. Phone number
    6. Hydrant location (provide nearest cross streets)
    7. Security deposit
  3. Visit the Bureau of Utilities to process permit applications and make payment. We accepts checks, exact change or charge (Visa, Amex, Mastercard or Discover).

View a sample Fire Hydrant Connection Permit as a reference for regulations, security deposit rates, rental fees and price per gallon.

Meter Sizing Guide

The security deposit amount will vary depending on the size of the meter being requested. Three-quarters-inch and one-inch meters may be used on any public fire hydrant in Baltimore County.

  • Three-Quarters-Inch Meter—Garden hose end used for general water ( i.e. lawns, flower beds and general construction use)
  • One-Inch Meter (Pipe Nipple)—Construction or contractor use (i.e. construction site dust control, large scale watering and filling tanks under 500 gallons)
  • Two-Inch Meter (Pipe Nipple)—Construction or contractor use (i.e. 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. If you request a three-inch meter, the Bureau of Utilities will provide you with a list of predetermined hydrant locations from which to choose.

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

Returns and Renewals

Meter permits are good for a maximum of six months. Prior to the end of the six-month period:

  1. Return the meter and the wrench to the Bureau of Utilities.
  2. 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.
  3. You will be invoiced for the rental, water consumption and any equipment repairs.
  4. Return or Renew:
    1. For returns—Upon final return, any rental fees, water consumption charges and fees to repair broken equipment will be deducted from the security deposit. If your charges exceed the amount of your security deposit, you will be billed for that amount. Any remaining security deposit will be returned to you via check from Baltimore County Government.
    2. For renewals—The security deposit will remain intact and you will be responsible for paying rental, water consumption and any equipment repairs for the prior six months before renewing for another six months.

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

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Contact Us

Bureau of Utilities

4421 Bucks Schoolhouse Road
Baltimore, Maryland 21237


Monday through Friday
8 a.m. to 4 p.m.




Bureau Chief

Chad Thornton


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