Private well and septic decommissioning rebate program

The private well and septic decommissioning rebate program assists landowners with the financial burden of decommissioning unused private water wells and septic systems located on residential and agricultural property in Guelph. By decommissioning unused wells and septic systems we help protect the sources of our municipal drinking water against existing and future drinking water threats such as bacteria, viruses, pathogens, pesticides, fertilizers and other contaminants.

Why participate

Decommissioning unused, private wells and septic systems helps:

  • protect Guelph’s drinking water by eliminating a pathway for contaminants, viruses and pathogens
  • reduce your liability by removing a hazard for people and animals who may fall into large diameter wells or septic system access points

How the program works

We accept requests for well and septic decommissioning rebates anytime throughout the year and on a first-come, first-served basis. To be eligible for funding, the City must review and approve each request before any work can start. 

The private well and septic decommissioning rebate program follows these steps:

  1. The applicant completes the private well or septic decommissioning rebate program application form.
  2. The City reviews the application form and schedules and completes an on-site inspection of the well. In the instance of septic decommissioning, the applicant must provide the most recent inspection report.
  3. The applicant obtains two (2) quotes from a Ministry of Environment, Conservation and Parks licensed water well contractor, or qualified septic system contractor, along with a copy of the well contractors’ licence and/or the septic installers Building Code Identification Number (BCIN) from the Ministry of Municipal Housing and Affairs (MMAH). These materials are submitted to the City. For decommissioning of a septic system, a record of when the tank was pumped out will also be required.
  4. The City reviews the quotes and informs the applicant of its approval, or of deficiencies required to be addressed prior to approval of the application.
  5. Once approval from the City is obtained, the applicant completes the well or septic decommissioning work with their contractor.
  6. The applicant submits the following materials to the City once the work is complete:
    1. Receipts/invoices from contractor(s) (marked “Paid in full”)
    2. Following decommissioning of the well and/or septic system, the applicant provides the City with the record issued by the contractor which indicates that the well and/or septic was decommissioned in accordance with the Ontario Regulation 903 or the Ontario Building Code, respectively.
  7. The City reviews the submitted materials and completes a follow-up site inspection to ensure the project was completed.
  8. Once all of the above is complete, the City sends the rebate to the applicant.

How to qualify

To qualify for this rebate you must meet the following criteria:

  1. The applying property must not be occupied by an industrial or commercial enterprise or owned by a corporation or partnership.
  2. Property owner must not be carrying on an industrial or commercial enterprise at the property and must not have any outstanding debt to the City.
  3. Property must be located in the City of Guelph and have access to CIty water and sanitary services.
  4. Private water well and/or septic system must be located on the property owner’s private property.

Property owner responsibilities

Property owners must ensure that any connection or piping (including electrical wiring from a pre-existing well pump or any plumbing to or from the well or septic system) for the well or septic system must be disconnected or removed before the start of the decommissioning work.

Connecting to City water supply

Before decommissioning a well under this program, a property owner that would like to connect to the municipal drinking water supply system must meet certain criteria including:

  • Contact the City of Guelph’s Building Services Department at 519-837-5615 or to complete a servicing application and to obtain a connection receipt;
  • Obtain and complete an application for a service connection to the municipal drinking water system;
  • Obtain a private side plumbing permit;
  • Hire a licensed plumber to disconnect your well before decommissioning begins; and
  • Contact the City’s Building Services Department to complete and approve the private side plumbing inspection including written confirmation of the existing well disconnection.

Sign up today

Complete the application form below to apply for the private well or septic decommissioning rebate program.

Fill in the rebate form


For more information

Guelph Source Water Protection
519-822-1260 extension 3320