Is Shower Water Tap Water? [And Is It Safe to Drink?]

While in the shower, you might have thought to yourself, is it safe to drink the water coming out from the showerhead? Is the shower water the same as tap water? Well, the answer for both is yes. The shower water and water on the sink, the toilet, and the kitchen are all tap water. They come from the same source. Unless you have another water line installed in your home, chances are, all the places where water comes out are tap water. 

Is Shower Water the Same as Tap Water?

Yes, shower water is the same as tap water. These waters come from similar sources unless you have different pipes installed in your home.

The only time it would be different is if you have a softener in one of your water lines. Hence, if you do not have such softener, your shower’s water quality and in your kitchen are the same.

Is Shower Water Safe to Drink?

Shower water can be drunk as it comes from a potable source. It has the same levels of calcium and magnesium compared to mineral and bottled water.

However, studies found that because shower heads are breeding grounds for bacteria that cause different diseases, it could be a wiser decision not to drink water from the shower.

Also, hot water is usually used in showers, so the heat tends to corrode the pipes more quickly than cold water. Because of the corrosion, you can drink the lead or dissolved metals from such occurrence. Lead is a toxic contaminant that could be especially dangerous to children.

So, the conclusion is that you shouldn’t be drinking shower water.

Is It Ok to Drink the Cold Shower Water?

If you have no choice but to drink the shower water, always opt for the cold shower water. Accordingly, the hot water is often stored in the tanks that can be cooled then reheated numerous times. This process leads to the growth of bacteria like legionella. This bacteria causes legionellosis, including a pneumonia-type illness called Legionnaires’ disease and a mild flu-like condition called Pontiac fever. Although these diseases are not that frequently contracted, it is still best not to drink hot water from the shower.

If you are thirsty and do not want to walk to the kitchen, it is best to get a pitcher or a glass of water then place it on your bedside table.

Can You Drink Hot Shower Water?

Hot shower water is what you should steer clear from. Experts say that hot water from the shower should not be used for drinking or cooking. The two reasons for this include the fact that there is bacterial growth from the water heater tank in your home.

The second reason is that hot water corrodes the pipes quicker than cold water. This means that the corrosion leads to more dissolution of metals. Such would produce lead, and you do not want to suffer from lead poisoning. Showering in lead-contaminated water is ok because the skin does not absorb the lead but ingesting water with high levels of lead causes health-related repercussions. If the lead from the hot shower water enters your blood, it can cause brain and kidney damage. It can even interfere with red blood cell production, later affecting the flow of oxygen to all parts of your body.

Where Does Shower Water Come From?

Waters in different homes usually come from a groundwater source. This source includes those coming from wells or surface-water sources such as a lake, a reservoir, or a river.

The water from these sources are taken to treatment plants. After the water gets treated, it gets placed into storage tanks. From there, the water gets pumped to go to different houses via pipe systems.

Is Shower Water Considered Drinking Water?

Shower water is considered drinking water because the water in your shower comes from the same source as the tap water in your kitchen. The question, however, is if the shower water is safe to drink.

The water in your shower got treated at your local municipal water treatment plant. Still, the heaters and showerheads in your home could cause the deterioration of the water quality in your shower when it comes to it being considered drinking water.

drinking shower water

Is Bath Water Tap Water?

Yes, bath water is tap water as long as it comes from the same water source, and you did not install any water softeners in your pipe systems. You can also drink water from the bath, but it is best to drink cold shower water if you have no choice.

Is Bathroom Water Safe to Drink in the USA?

Generally speaking, bathroom water is safe to drink in the USA. However, you should avoid it as much as you could because tap water in the kitchen is more suitable to serve as drinking water.

If you want to know where it is best to drink bathroom water in the United States of America, there are top ten cities known for clean drinking water. The tenth spot goes to New York. Their water comes from a reservoir called Catskill Mountain. The tap water there is said to taste sweet. It is also full of minerals, so aside from being clean, it is also healthy to drink.

Stevens Point, Wisconsin, got the ninth spot. Accordingly, the tap water gets tested first, and if the water passes all the tests, it is deemed safe to drink. It is also treated with chlorine, fluoride, and phosphate.

Chicago gets top 8. Their tap water comes from Lake Michigan. The water gets filtered through carbon and sand to make sure it is indeed clean.

Denver, Colorado claims the seventh spot, and it is no wonder because they have a lot of mountains. The water comes from the snowmelt off the mountains. Accordingly, the water here tastes like mineral water combined with a grassy flavor.

Manchester lands the sixth place. The water here is clear and clean as it comes from Lake Massabesic. It is also purified with ozone.

The fifth place is from Colorado again. This time, it is the water in Fort Collins. The water they distribute to their citizens comes from the mountain snowmelt and the Cache La Poudre River. Coal is used to filter the water. It is then treated with chlorine to make sure it is really clean.

Greenville may be in the southern part of South Carolina, but they have great tasting water. They are on the fourth spot for a reason because their water reportedly has a very smooth taste.

The third spot goes to Silverdale, Washington. They have an aquifer, and the rainwater that goes into it can already be available to drink. It no longer needs treatment or filtering.

Oklahoma City still got the second spot even if their water does not come from a natural source. Their tap water comes from six human-made lakes. Their water then gets treated with ozone and is filtered.

And the first place goes to (drum roll, please) Louisville, Kentucky. The water gets filtered through sand and gravel. It also undergoes hundreds of tests every day, so you get the assurance that your drinking water is safe and clean. Their water comes from the Ohio River.

Is Bathroom Water Safe to Drink in Canada?

Like in the United States, the bathroom water comes from the same source as the kitchen tap water. It is ok to drink, but experts recommend using a carbon filter if you plan to drink from the bathroom or even from the kitchen sink. Accordingly, microplastics were found in most municipal tap water in Canada. The carbon filter will help decrease the microplastics that will enter your body.

Is Bathroom Water Safe to Drink in Australia?

Generally, the tap water in the bathroom and kitchen in Australia is safe to drink. A vast majority of Australia’s towns and cities have tap water as clean as bottled water. However, you have to look up the remote areas in Australia where tap water is not recommended to drink. Usually, these remote areas are on the West Coast.

You also have to know that tap water in Australia could taste like chemicals because of its fluoride. It could even taste mineralized because the water might have been from the artesian bores.

Is Bathroom Water Safe to Drink in New Zealand?

It is safe to drink as most cities or towns in New Zealand have potable drinking water as they are treated. Standards regarding tap water are in place. These standards must be followed to ensure that contaminating organisms like Protozoa and Cryptosporidium are removed or reduced.

However, it is recommended to boil the water if the source is from a stream or an untreated source. It will help if you also looked for announcements from the officials if there is a public health warning about the water.

Is Bathroom Water Safe to Drink in Ireland?

Accordingly, the rule of thumb to follow in Ireland is if you are in a bigger town or city, the water is safe to drink. However, if you are in rural areas, you should think twice about drinking bathroom water. You can still use the bathroom water to wash and brush your teeth but never for drinking if you want to dodge the possibility of getting sick from the water. 


Shower water and tap water most likely come from the same source. If you want to drink your shower water or have no other choice but to drink from the showerhead, you should drink cold water. Hot shower water could pose risks to your health. The heat could corrode the pipes quicker, and it could cause higher amounts of metal and lead in the water.

If you are not sure about the shower water in the country you are visiting, you should research it on Google or other search engine sites before drinking it. If you can find bottled water in the countries you are visiting, it is better to buy them than to risk your health.


Image credits – Photos by christian buehner and Lucas Sankey on Unsplash

Legionella and Legionnaires’ Disease – NCBI

Where you can drink water – AWOL

I have over 20 years of experience in construction. For the past 12 years, I've been mostly devoted to bathrooms, where I have my own business. I've seen almost every problem, so I believe I can help you. Read more