Rural mailboxes are to be installed and maintained by homeowners. It is important that you ensure your mailbox conforms to Canada Post's approved traditional or contemporary mailboxes guidelines. We recognize the importance of rural mail delivery. In order for this service to be efficient, we need to ensure that rural mailboxes are constructed and maintained to ensure the continued delivery of mail to our rural residents.

Canada Post guidelines


  • When choosing a rural mailbox, ensure it is strong enough to hold the weight of letters and parcels and that it is weatherproof.
  • All rectangular mailboxes must have an opening of at least 17.5 cm (7”) in width and height, and an interior of at least 45 cm (18”) in length.
  • A cylindrical mailbox must have an opening of at least 25 cm (10“) in diameter and an interior of at least 45 cm (18“) in length.
  • The bottom of the box should be at least 100 cm {and preferably 107- 114cm (42”- 45”)} above the ground. It should not obscure or obstruct access to any other boxes near it.
  • Mailboxes must have a door located in the front, with a sturdy handle, lip or flange. They must remain open while mail is being picked up or delivered, and be able to open with ease and close securely.
  • The mailbox must be upright and securely attached to a fixed post or an arm on a lever, and must not be allowed to swing freely.


  • All rural mailboxes must meet Canada Post's safety criteria so the Corporation can ensure the safety of employees, customers and motorists
  • A rural mailbox should be located along the right-hand side of the road in the direction that the delivery agent travels
  • Mailboxes must be placed where the delivery agent can safely deliver the mail through the passenger window without getting out of the vehicle
  • It is the responsibility of mailbox owners to ensure that the location for the rural mailbox is free of underground obstructions such as power, gas and cable lines, water mains, etc. Please call your local utility locator service before you dig.
  • Delivery vehicles must have sufficient clearance to drive up to the mailbox and then continue in a forward direction while merging back into traffic.
  • Rural mailboxes should never be placed in lane ways or driveways.


  • The civic address of each resident or homeowner should be marked on the right-hand side of a rural mailbox when facing the receptacle from the front.
  • In non-civic addressed areas, a resident's full name should be clearly indicated on the side of the box.
  • A resident's name or address information must be placed on the side of the box so it is clearly visible to the delivery agent as he or she approaches the mailbox.
  • Local post offices should be advised of the names and/or businesses that will receive mail at a rural mailbox.

Snow clearance:

  • The area in front of a rural mailbox must be kept clear of snow and ice to ensure uninterrupted delivery of letters and parcels
  • Delivery agents require at least one car length on both sides of a rural mailbox to pull over safely, deliver the mail then safely merge back into traffic.


  • Before clustering or grouping mailboxes next to or in front of someone else's property, approval must be obtained from the owner of that property.
  • Approval must be obtained from local post offices to cluster rural mailboxes.
  • Clustered mailboxes must be aligned at the same height and in the correct numerical sequence.

Signal device:

  • A signal device is used by Canada Post-delivery agents to indicate that mail has been deposited in a mailbox for pickup or for customers to indicate that there is outgoing mail to be picked up (proper postage must be affixed to all outgoing mail).
  • The signal device should be easily visible from a distance and should not obstruct a name or address on a rural mailbox.
  • Signal devices must be on the right-hand side of rural mailboxes when facing the receptacle from the front.


  • Rural mailbox owners are responsible for all costs associated with placing, relocating and for ongoing maintenance of their mailbox and the surrounding terrain.
  • Replacing or reinstalling a mailbox that becomes damaged or knocked down is also the responsibility of the owner.
  • Please ensure that, during delivery hours, access to mailboxes remains free of obstructions such as garbage and newspaper receptacles, parked vehicles, etc
  • The area in front of a mailbox must be firm and level to allow safe and easy access for Canada Post delivery vehicles.
  • Delivery agents are not required to leave their vehicle while delivering to a rural mailbox and their inability to access a rural mailbox may result in non-delivery.
  • Metal mailboxes are prone to rust and should be checked frequently to ensure that they do not pose a risk to Canada Post employees.

For more information contact your local post office or call Canada Post's Customer Service at 1-800-267-1177.

Download Canada Post's Brochure

Installing or repairing mailboxes

Autumn is a good time for you to make sure your mailboxes are in good shape for the winter season to help it withstand the force of heaving snow coming off the snow plows. Common repairs include:

  • Replacing loose hinges on a mailbox door
  • Remounting a mailbox post that may have become loose or rotten
  • Replacing or adding house numbers to assist mail carriers and emergency crews
  • Install reflectors to make it easier to see during storms or during dark hours

Mailbox damages

Damage to mailboxes resulting from snow plowing will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.

Damage caused by physical contact:

Should our equipment make physical contact with a mailbox, repairs will be at our expense, but only if the mailbox was properly installed and located.

Damage caused without physical contact:

You as the owner are responsible for repair or replacement of the mailbox if it was damaged by the pressure of the plowed snow and there was no physical contact with the plow equipment.

Please note: It is very uncommon that a mailbox is directly contacted with snow removal equipment if properly installed and positioned. The average number of mailboxes that receive direct contact from snow removal equipment during a snow storm is less than one percent. If you have a concern, you can fill out a report online.

View our Rural Mailbox Policy for more information

Should you have any questions regarding your mailbox please contact us at 613-735-6291.