Industry insights

Is Tap Water Bad For You If You Live In London?

2 min read

By Ryan Tedder |  Published

Drinking water and staying hydrated is vital when maintaining good physical and mental health. But, for those living in Greater London, the safety, quality, and taste of hard tap water have all come under scrutiny in recent years, and the question that keeps cropping up from time to time is: is tap water bad for you if you live in London? The answer to this is a resounding ‘no’. Safety standards for tap water in London are high, so it can be chemical or natural elements that make people think it’s not good for you. Let’s look at the measures taken to ensure the safety of London tap water before it reaches you.

Water quality in London

Almost 80% of London tap water is supplied by Thames Water and reaches homes and businesses in Greater London and the Thames Valley. Other privately owned water companies provide the other ~20% reaching parts of Surrey, Kent, Gloucestershire, and Wiltshire. Covering around 5,000 sq. miles, much of the Thames Water supply comes from surface water sources, including reservoirs, with around 30% from deep underground sources (groundwater). 

Many water pipes in and around London date back to the 1960s, with the oldest dating back to the mid-1800s. But, as old as they may be, the London tap water goes through an extensive process to remove impurities, including bacteria, viruses, chemicals, and other contaminants, a long way before it reaches our taps. So what happens? 

Water treatment processes

Thames Water must comply with strict water supply regulations that balance how your water looks, tastes, and smells to ensure tap water's safety, quality, and purity. This happens using several treatment processes, including flocculation, sedimentation, and filtration. Each process is designed to remove impurities and provide water that meets the required standards. 

Plus, the use of chlorine serves as a disinfectant, eliminating any potential pathogens that may be lurking in the water. They also carry out more than 500,000 tests each year, including pH adjustment and Total Dissolved Solids, which detect levels of chemical elements, including calcium, magnesium, sodium, chloride, and sulfate and can indicate how hard the water is. 

These chemicals can also affect the taste and smell of the water, which many people object to. But is London tap water bad for you? No. The water undergoes extensive testing, treatment, and regulation to ensure its safety and quality and that it meets strict standards. For residents in London and the surrounding areas, tap water remains a 100% safe and reliable source of hydration. 

Pure-filtered water from Thirsty Work

But if you really don’t like the taste, there is an alternative that’s softer and better tasting.

Our bottled water coolers use water from our source in Shropshire, which has been naturally filtered for purity and taste. And our mains-fed water coolers have an in-built advanced filtration system to give you great-tasting, pure-filtered water straight from your tap. 

So if you want to lose that London tap water taste, find out more about our range of water coolers today. Call the team on 020 3740 9480 or 020 3740 9481, email, or send us a message. You can start your 10-day free trial or get your free quote, and start receiving reliable same or next-day deliveries across London and the southeast direct from our London depot.