If you plan on visiting France or moving there, one of the most important things you need to know is if you can drink the tap water there. One common myth about France is that tap water is not safe to drink, mainly because many people drink mineral water.
However, the tap water in France is safe to drink, apart from a few cities where there might be contaminations. The WHO provided data showing that 99% of the cities in France have clean and safe drinking water from improved sources.
Around half of the water people drink in France comes from rivers and aquifers. Being one of the most visited cities, Paris is the one with the most concerns about their water.
Is Tap Water in France Safe To Drink?
People consider tap water in Paris as high quality and safe to drink. However, filtering is recommended for people who love to improve the taste or those who are not confident about the water quality. It helps remove the chlorine taste in water, making it more bearable to drink.
It also helps protect your children from any minerals or contaminants in the water. To get the best filtration for your water, you need to try the Big Berkey Water filters.
While using this filter, some of the things that you remove from the water include viruses, chlorine, petroleum contaminants, fluoride, pesticides and herbicides, heavy metals, bacteria, parasites, radiological, and chloramines.
There have been many tests conducted on the water around Paris in the Eau De Paris analysis and research laboratories.
They received and tested more than 200 water samples from different sources. Initially, they tested the water from reservoirs and distribution systems around the city. Finally, they collected water samples from different houses to determine if the tap water was potable.
Nitrates are among the main things they tested for because their presence in high levels in the water could have negative health effects, especially in children. The standard and safe level of Nitrates
in tap water is 50 mg/l.
When deciding those conditions, they had in mind an idea of protecting all the resources people use in providing drinking water. They also had in mind food exposure sources.
According to the tests conducted by the laboratories, they found the water had nitrate contents of between 20 and 28 mg/l and lower. That means that it does not pose any health risks to either children or adults.
Microplastics are another issue present in the water in Paris because, according to the tests conducted, they found that 72% of all their water samples had them. However, there are no official regulations.
Both the Paris residents and authorities responsible for water distribution came up with a method to ensure that drinking water is free from chlorine taste and smell. People only have to put their water in bottles, and without closing them, leave them in their fridge for a few hours.
Mineral content in tap water is something else that many people worry about. The water has a hardness ranging from 80 to 120 mg of calcium per liter (20-30 degrees). That is a normal level because the normal hardness of water is between 80 and 100 mg of calcium per liter.
Drinking one liter of Paris water per day means that you meet 10% of your daily calcium consumption needs and covers 25% of the daily calcium consumption needs of a child.
The tap water also contains around 10 mg of sodium per liter, making it perfect for low-sodium diets.
Where Does The Water Come From?
Most of the water in Paris comes from underground sources or aquifers. The water they get from those reservoirs does not affect the water table because it comes from natural emergencies.
However, the water from those sources is not safe to drink directly, and you must take it through several filtering facets, including ultra-filtration plus activated carbon.
One of the rarest things about Paris is that it has two water systems that people should not mix. Each of the water systems has different purity levels, and they are used for different purposes.
One of the water systems is meant for tap water, while the other is used to clean the city streets and flush. The water system for tap water is filtered, while the other one is unfiltered.
Potential Issues With Drinking Paris Tap Water
The EU and WHO consider Paris tap water potable and safe to drink. However, apart from nitrates and minerals in the water, some other common issues you may face when drinking the water include:
- Lead: This is one of the major concerns for people all around Paris. Some of the sources of lead poisoning in tap water include not handling surgical wounds properly, using pharmaceutical drugs, and lead paint. While the risk of getting lead poisoning in water is low, those at risk are the ones who live in an old apartment where the piping hasn’t been changed for a long time.
- Chlorine bi-products: Bi-chlorination is normally a problem with water chlorination when the chlorine in water reacts with other organic substances. Normally, water suppliers have conditions that retain these conditions, but there is a lot of unrest regarding HAA and THMs.
- Pipe corrosions and leaching: There are slim chances that pipes will corrode unless they have been in place for a very long time. When it happens, and the corrosion contaminates the water, it could result in serious health problems.
- Pesticides: These cause serious health issues when you continually take them from your tap water.
Should You Drink Bottled Water?
Many people in France drink bottled water, which is why water safety is in question. Many hotels and restaurants also give you bottled water when you ask for water.
While tap water may be safe in restaurants, they, like many other people in Paris, prefer bottled water because it has better tastes and quality than tap water.
You do not have to worry about drinking tap water when in Paris. However, always use a filter if you do not like the taste or want to be extra sure about the quality.