Do You Know Where Your Drinking Water Comes From?

Your drinking water can come from many places, not all of them good. What can you do about it?I think by now everyone knows how important it is to drink water every day. Water plays a significant role in just about every process that takes place in your body. Staying properly hydrated is necessary for delivering nutrition to the cells in your body and carrying away the waste, for your muscles to contract properly, and for you to be able to think clearly.

We know that we live on a planet that is abundant in water, but most of it is in the oceans and is far too salty to drink. We require fresh water, most of which is frozen in the icecaps or closed away underground. The USGS has a great image that shows how much water is actually on our planet and how much of it is available for us. I didn’t put the picture here because the text description of the image is valuable too.

So Where Does Our Drinking Water Come From?

There are many ways that you can get water to your house for drinking, cooking, laundry and all of the many other uses that you use water for. Let’s take a look at the most common.

A Well

If you are on a well, you get your water from the water table or other pockets of fresh water below ground. It involves getting a hole down to where the water is and some means of bringing the water up so that you can use it.

Modern wells are a lot different than the old wells you see in some movies, or especially old cartoons. No more low stone walls around circular openings in the ground with a bucket on a rope to let down into the water.

You also don’t see many hand pump wells anymore where you set your bucket on the ground under the spout and use the handle to manually pump water out of the ground, although I have played with a few.

When I was little my family lived out in the country and we had a well. I don’t know how it is now, but back then (forty years ago) someone came to our house and used a divining rod to find the best place to dig the well. Then they used a rig to drive the well pipe into the ground and ran another pipe from the top of the well into the house. Once inside, they connected a pump to actually pull the water up and connected it to the water lines in the house.

Getting water from a well is great. It offers the best chance of getting clean water safe for drinking, but that is not a guarantee. While our well when I was little offered clean water great for drinking, my grandparents’ well next door had sulfur water. It smelled terrible. They tapped into our well for their drinking water and used the sulfur water for everything else. They drilled a new well after we left so that they could have clean water.

The biggest challenge with a well is that the well itself provides a path for contaminating the water. If something gets spilled near the well, or on higher ground above the well, it can run down the side of the pipe and contaminate the water.

Municipal Water Supply

If you are like most people, at least in the US, your water is sent to you through a municipal water distribution system – city water. I find this source to be kind of scary, so here we go.

Municipal water systems, at least all of the ones that I know about, get their water from surface sources. Rain falls from the sky onto the ground and washes everything into the streams and rivers. Then the city comes along and places a dam on the river to create a man-made lake, or reservoir, to store water for their water system.

Since this water is run-off water, it can be contaminated with anything that is done to the ground where the rain fell or that happens in those waterways:

  • chemicals sprayed on crops
  • animal manure from farms
  • waste products from factories
  • trash dumped into the rivers
  • boat fuel

The water then sits in the reservoir until the city’s pumping station picks it up and treats it through some form of filtering (hopefully) and by adding chlorine and other chemicals. Then this concoction gets sent to your home through their network of pipes. That’s why your tap water smells and tastes so bad.

From time to time you hear stories on the news about other stuff that gets into the municipal water supply, usually prescription drugs.

Bottled Water

The bottled water industry has no safety standards, and in many cases comes from regular tap waterThe third common source of drinking water is from bottled water. There are two common kinds – purified water and spring water. Some companies take their purified water and add minerals to make it taste more like spring water.

Most of the brands of purified water that I have checked are acidic, which isn’t good for you because most people already have an acidic diet, and your body needs to be slightly alkaline. With spring water you really have no idea what you have because there are absolutely no standards for the bottled water industry.

Bottled water has two other problems as well. The plastic bottles that water comes in is designed to be easily broken down and recycled. When the bottles get warm they can leach chemicals into your water. If you take a drink and the water tastes like the bottle, there you go. That’s all the proof you need. The other issue is that bottled water can be very expensive, especially the ones that are better for drinking.

I have found two brands of bottled water in my area that are alkaline. Deer Park tastes terrible and Fiji is expensive.

What Can You Do About Your Water?

There is no guarantee about the quality of the water that comes into your home regardless of the source, so what can you do? I recommend that you filter it. Most of the contaminants that you need to be concerned about in household water come out easily with a good water filter.

[bctt tweet=”I couldn’t imagine not having clean water. – Chris Tucker”]

Further, you can get a water filter that will also balance out the mineral content in your water and make it alkaline so that it helps to offset the acidity in your diet.

I wrote a post last week to help you if you find the whole business of picking out the right water filter to be rather confusing, and who wouldn’t.

I have filtered my drinking and cooking water for many years. The water filter that I use now is the PiMag Waterfall. My water where I live at the moment comes from a well, and that goes through my water filter before I drink it. I have used it at my previous home to filter my water from a municipal source.

I even used it one time when I was in a hotel for a week while at a seminar. I bought bottled water from a grocery store and ran it through my PiMag Waterfall before I drank it. The seminar leader had one in the seminar room for all of the attendants to use too.

What About Your Water?

Where does your water come from, and what steps do you take to make sure that it is safe for you and your family? Leave a comment below and let’s start a conversation about clean, healthy water.


I am a distributor for the water filter that I use, the PiMag Waterfall. If you choose to buy your water filter through the page linked to above then I may earn a commission.

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