A spike in residential complaints regarding door-to-door salesmen offering water treatment and metering equipment for sale has prompted a warning from the Regional Municipality of Durham.

Durham’s Director of Environmental Services John Presta said there have been several inquiries from residents concerning door-to-door salesmen who claim to be selling products that are endorsed by the municipality.

But Presta warns residents that they are not.

“The Region of Durham doesn’t sell or endorse water filters or treatment equipment for residents,” he said. “Our water undergoes daily monitoring and testing and doesn’t require further filtration or monitoring at residents’ expense.”

Durham’s Supervisor of Technology Jim Cunningham said the Region has received three to four calls concerning the salesmen every week over the past couple of months, double the one to two calls they used to receive. He blames this uptick on the emergence of new salesmen making the same claims.

Cunningham told CTV Toronto that the problem has been ongoing for two to three years, but the recent increase in complaints prompted the warning Friday.

The salesmen are known by the Region to use “deceptive tactics” like asking to enter into someone’s house to inspect their water treatment equipment, only to attempt to sell their own equipment once inside.

Some of them use aggressive tactics, like sticking their foot in a closing door while continuing to speak about their product. As of now, Cunningham has no knowledge of any related police involvement.

Residents are advised to ask for photo ID from any water treatment salesmen to confirm they’re indeed a regional employee. Residents are also asked to call the Region to confirm the visit is legitimate, and warned to never give out any personal information.

The Region has a Residential Meter Replacement/Upgrade program with contractor Neptune Technology Group for any necessary water meter replacements or upgrades, free of charge.

Residents will receive a letter from the Region and have an appointment scheduled before any contractors arrive at their homes.

Residents curious about water quality and testing can click here