Rates & Fees

Rates & Fees

We read customer meters and send a water bill every two months.

Rates and fees shown are effective for bills mailed on or after January 1, 2018

Helix Quick Reference Fees and Charges Effective January 1, 2018 (PDF)


Customers are subject to a base charge whether or not water is used. This is because the base charge pays for fixed costs associated with customer service, fire protection, infrastructure and debt service. Note that most homes have a 5/8 inch or 3/4 inch meter and that the amount shown is for two months. The fee is prorated on a daily basis on a customer’s first and final bills.

Rates Effective
January 1, 2018

Rates Effective
March 1, 2018


The commodity charge is a fee for each unit of water used, and it pays for purchasing water from the San Diego County Water Authority, the treatment process, energy to pump water and other volume-based costs. The first rate table at left shows rates effective with bills mailed on or after January 1, 2018, and the table below shows rates effective March 1, 2018, that include an increase in the San Diego County Water Authority’s wholesale water rate.

Estimate Your Water Bill

Irrigation Accounts
Water Budget Policy & Calculations

Convert Units to Gallons

You can use this table to convert your water use into gallons per day.

  • On your last water bill, find how many units of water you used
  • Also on your water bill, find how many days were in your billing cycle
  • Use the table at left to convert your water use into gallons
  • Divide the gallons by the days in your billing cycle


The fire service lateral charge is a fixed charge billed every two months. It is based on the size of the fire lateral serving the property. There is no commodity charge for water use.


Use of a temporary water meter for construction or other purposes requires payment for the meter and the water used. Note that the following items are deducted from the deposit when the meter is removed from service:

  • $80 for final read and meter removal costs
  • $168 for each meter relocation since the last billing period
  • $199 for any unauthorized meter location
  • Any unpaid water charges
  • The cost of repairing or replacing the meter


We collect a deposit based on a field estimate to cover the actual costs of installation and abandonment and/or relocation of meters and laterals. If the meter size is reduced or increased the customer will pay the appropriate meter and installation costs. And, if the meter size is increased, the customer will pay the additional capacity fees due to Helix Water District and the San Diego County Water Authority.

  • Installation of fire hydrants and fire service laterals is charged at actual cost.
  • We collect capacity fees due to Helix Water District and the San Diego County Water Authority.
  • We charge the cost of encroachment permits issued to Helix by other agencies.


Service charges recover the facility, vehicle and labor costs associated with each task listed.


We may discontinue service when charges remain unpaid beyond the due date, or at the customer’s request.

  • We may remove the water meter if service has been discontinued for one year. Reinstatement of the meter will require a meter restoration fee.
  • If a customer has more than one account with us, and unpaid charges from a discontinued account, any active account may be subject to disconnection.


When a customer applies for restoration of service, they must pay any unpaid water charges previously accrued. If the water meter has been removed, all of the following conditions apply:

  • A meter reinstatement fee and a deposit may be required.
  • If the existing lateral is no longer usable or cannot be located, payment of the standard lateral installation charge is required.
  • The customer is responsible for payment of connection fees if the property owner(s) did not contribute to the construction costs of an existing water main.
  • Payment of all delinquent Helix assessments is required.
  • We reserve the right to change the size of the water meter to conform to Helix rates and policies.

Setting standards of excellence in public service.

We are responsible for the safety, quality and reliability of the drinking water for over 273,000 people in San Diego's East County.

© 2017 Helix Water District

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