Water & Watering Restrictions

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Content - City Hall - Bylaws - Water

Each year, the warmer weather brings a higher demand on water systems - leading to decreased potable water reserves, low water pressure and in extreme cases putting the water system at risk and making it difficult to fight a fire. In 2006, Council passed an updated water bylaw to regulate water supplied by Utilities Kingston.

According to provisions of the bylaw, the following water restrictions will apply annually from June 15 to September 15:

  • Residents with odd number civic addresses may use outdoor water on odd number calendar days.
  • Residents with even number civic addresses may use outdoor water on even number calendar days.
  • On your scheduled day, outdoor watering is permitted at any time with a hand-held hose, can or bucket for activities such as watering lawns and gardens, washing cars and recreation.
  • Sprinkling devices, such as lawn sprinklers, can only be used in the mornings between 5 and 10 a.m. on your scheduled day.
According to the provisions of the Water Bylaw, Utilities Kingston is authorized to impose regulation to limit the external use of water. Notice of any additional water use regulation and the effective date are published in local newspapers and through social media.

When should you water?

Early morning is considered the best time to water your lawn to avoid evaporation and grass diseases. Lawns only need about three cm (one inch) of water weekly. A typical lawn sprinkler will deliver that amount in about one hour.


If you have a new yard (sod or seeded new lawn) you can apply for an exemption permit. The permit will allow you to water your new lawn for seven consecutive days with a sprinkling device between the usual morning hours of 5 and 10 a.m.

If you have new trees or shrubs you can apply for an exemption permit which will allow you to water your new trees and shrubs for seven consecutive days with a hand-held hose or watering can.

An exemption permit is $55 plus HST and issued by Utilities Kingston - Services Advisor at 85 Lappan's Lane. The permit is only valid for the seven day period listed on the permit. Only one exemption permit will be granted per property, per year.

Exemption permits will not be issued for existing yards, trees and shrubs. However, if a circumstance of irreparable damage or undue hardship on a property owner is anticipated, up to two additional seven day exemption permits may be considered.

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