Drinking Water

Man filling a glass with water from the tap


Understanding Your Drinking Water

Drinking water from lakes, rivers, shallow wells (dug wells) or drilled wells may contain unseen substances. While most of these substances are harmless, some may be a health risk. Compare your drinking water test results with the Guidelines for Canadian drinking water quality to see if they are within the limits set by Health Canada.

Water Treatment

Drinking water should be treated if it is sourced from lakes, rivers, shallow wells (dug wells) or drilled wells with poor test results.

For information on drinking water treatment devices visit the Health Canada website.

For information on UV light treatment devices, visit our UV light information page

Drilled Well Disinfection Instruction

Well disinfection is one way homeowners may deal with an occasional bad water result. See the disinfection instruction sheet published by the Province of Ontario for a step-by-step guide on how to disinfect a drilled well.

Testing drinking water is an important part to having safe water. Visit the Public Health Ontario website for information on:

  • Drinking water safety
  • Testing drinking water for bacteria
  • Getting your drinking water test results
  • Understanding water test results
  • What to do if you have bad test results

For information on private water sample submission and the Health Unit water testing schedule, please see our Drinking water sample details / Collecte et envoi d’échantillons d’eau potable

Safe Drinking Water in Child Care Centres and Schools

In an effort to better protect children and youth, the Ontario Regulation 243/07, Schools, Private Schools and Child Care Centres made under the Safe Drinking Water Act, 2002 was improved in 2017. The changes include testing the water of all faucets in a school or child care centre (where water is drawn for drinking). Schools and child care centres are implementing this change gradually until 2020.

More information:

Fact sheet for parents / Fiche d’information à l’intention des parents

Flushing your plumbing / Vidanger votre installation de plomberie

Water Advisories

If a problem with your water is detected, you will receive a boil water advisory. To use water safely during an advisory, follow the advice in the guidelines and commonly asked questions:


Guidelines for food establishments during a boil water advisory

Guidelines for dental offices during a boil water advisory

Guidelines for child care centres during a boil water advisory

Commonly asked questions

Commonly asked questions about boil water advisories

Commonly asked questions about drinking water advisories

Boil water advisory signs

Boil water advisory sign /  Avis de faire bouillir l’eau




North Bay
Parry Sound
Burk's Falls

345 Oak Street West


70 Joseph Street Unit #302


17 Copeland Street (by appointment only)