The debate between drinking tap water or bottled water seems to be endless.
In most parts of the United States and Canada, it’s safe to drink tap water from public water systems. Tap water that’s been properly filtered is equally safe as bottled water and provides you with essential minerals you may not get from bottled water.
Even though it’s usually safe to drink tap water, it’s still a good idea to keep an eye out for local water advisories in your area. Situations like a broken water line or equipment failure at the water treatment plant can lead to temporary contamination.
You may also want to stick to bottled water when traveling to developing countries that don’t have the same level of infrastructure or safety standards. For example, a 2017 research review showed that Mexico’s maximum allowable limit of arsenic in drinking water is 2.5 times higher than the World Health Organization’s recommendation.
Keep reading to learn everything you need to know about drinking tap water in North America.