Water supply in France through waterworks or private well?

Jennieka de Velde,  Sunday, 9 April 2017

old water pump 

Water supply in France

In France, you have two different systems to provide you with water, your well and a connection to a waterworks system. Many households in the French countryside use both systems. They use tap water for home and garden and well water for the toilets.

If you have bought a house in France, ask the water company to record the water level before you use any water. Otherwise, you’ll risk paying the bill of the previous owner.

Private companies as control the tap water in France. Most people opt for a water meter to keep an eye on costs. If your house doesn’t have a meter, you can have one installed at your expense. You do not have to stay with the current provider but may switch safely to a competitor. Search in for ‘eaux’ (distribution, services)

If your home is old or remote, it may be that you have to use a well. It’s possible to connect your home to the water supply if your house is within a certain distance from the town center. You have to pay for the connection, including the laying of the pipes. Always ask for a quote from the local water company before you start the procedure.

Pros and cons of waterworks

Advantages:
drinkable water,
clean water,
good water pressure.

Disadvantages:
the costs, which can vary dramatically by region,
the availability, in times of drought the waterworks can be closed by the water company.

Pros and cons of a well

Advantages of your well are:
It's cheap. The electricity for the pump are the only costs
Availability, can not be closed in times of drought.

Disadvantages:
Most of the times not drinkable, you have to rely on bottled mineral water from the supermarket,
it can contain sediment that discolors the water and hence your clothes, washing machine, etc.
in the case of power failure, you’re pump stops working.

Sometimes the tap water is not drinkable. So the connection to the tap water is not always as beneficial as it seems. It is, therefore, good to test the water beforehand. The set with costs about € 100, - and is available at the local pharmacy. If you are connected to the water network, and the test shows that the water is not drinkable, you can probably negotiate a discount from your water company.

This convenient link from the French Ministry of Health shows by town the quality of drinking water: .

In France, they promote the economical use of water. New baths have a water-saving design with a dual flush button. When remodeling a bathroom and toilet, it is definitely worth paying attention to water saving solutions.




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