Content Map Terms

Drinking water

Last updated: May 23, 2024

Drinking water is water treated in a way that makes it safe to drink. You likely receive drinking water that is treated by a water supplier and then delivered through pipes to your home. Alternatively, you may receive water from a private well. Drinking water in B.C. is generally safe. If you receive water from a supplier such as a utility, there are standards in place to ensure that the drinking water delivered to your home is safe.

Learn about how water quality is regulated in B.C.

Be water aware

Emergency events such as pipe breaks, wildfires, droughts and floods can contaminate drinking water. If a “boil water” or “do not consume” advisory is issued for your drinking water supply, it will be communicated through public notices, radio or news media. Follow the instructions provided until the advisory is lifted.

Check if there is a drinking water advisory in your area.

You can also educate yourself on how to prevent waterborne infections:

In some cases, water can become contaminated with metals like lead. This can occur through contact with pipes and fixtures that contain lead. Lead can be harmful to health, even in low doses. Testing your water for lead is a good idea, particularly for households with infants, children or pregnant people.

If you are uncertain about anything related to your water supply, you can contact 8-1-1 or your regional health authority.

Well water safety 

Owners of private wells serving a single home are responsible for maintaining their own water quality. Annual testing of private wells is recommended. If you have a private well, visit these resources to learn more about keeping your water safe: 

Additional resources: