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Can You Get City Water If You Have a Well?

Despite the well water being free of monthly bills and containing multiple nutrients, sometimes well owners prefer adding city water. The city water is more convenient and cleaner, and it’s likely to cost less in maintenance. But is it possible to connect both sources at the same time?

Can you get city water if you have a well? The possibility of connecting the two sources depends on the place you’re living. One reason the city management might disregard the idea is fear of backflow. However, the city can approve after you observe some measures and use a backflow device.

The article covers more on city and well water and the possibility of connecting both. Read on to learn more and why you might opt to use one over the other.

Can I Get City Water If I Already Have a Well?

For most people, a well serves a great purpose in their homes. The water is profitable, especially for gardening, by providing unlimited water for as long as possible. The well water is also healthy, containing minerals like magnesium, calcium, and sodium, which can positively impact your health.

However, rainwater or snowmelt can contaminate the water after seeping underground into the well. This circumstance can result in serious health issues, like diarrhea, fever, and cholera. Also, pumping the water depends on electricity which is impossible in case of an outage.

Therefore, the first option for most well owners is to connect the city water with their water for convenience. However, this doesn’t always happen because most cities disallow it or have strict and expensive conditions. Among the measures include backflow devices that prevent contamination.

But what is a backflow device? Backflow devices prevent clean water from getting contaminated by foreign water, especially wastewater. They have been in use since the 1930s after a backflow contaminated water in Chicago, causing around 100 deaths.

Backflow devices include air gaps, vacuum breakers, and check valves. These devices must be checked regularly by the city, which is usually expensive.

get city water if i already have a well

Instances Where You Can Get City Water Despite Having a Well

Among the ways you can get city water if you have a well is;

1. If the two are used separately

One way the city can agree to connect you to the city water is if the two sources are kept separate. In most instances, the city water is for household uses like drinking, bathing, and cooking.

You can then use the water from the well for gardening and other uses. However, city management might regularly check the connections and test the waters.

2. If City Installs the Backflow Devices and Does Regular Tests

If you can bear the cost of backflow and regular tests, the city can agree to install their water. The installation process can be costly, ranging between $1500 and $4000, depending on the state.

Likewise, a backflow device costs between $300 and $1000, depending on quality. The city water management will also need to do regular water testing, including the devices, which can cost between $200 and $500. Also, you risk disconnection if the water from the well gets too contaminated.

Why Should You Prefer City Water Over Well Water?

While well water has many advantages, they also have many disadvantages, which is why most people might prefer city water. Among the disadvantages are the high maintenance cost and the risk of contaminating the pipes. Following are reasons why you might opt to connect to the city water.

1. No costly maintenance

Among the reasons you might prefer using city water is that you’ll not have regular maintenance costs. The city will take care of water pipes damages and spread the cost to all users, which is cheaper.

2. Regularly tested and clean

City water is also clean and doesn’t require regular testing and filtering. Besides, you’re less likely to be exposed to diseases, unlike water from a well.

3. Less likely to contaminate pipes

The presence of minerals in the water from the well can corrode the pipework or cause build-ups. On the other hand, city water has fewer minerals which, though a disadvantage, can cause fewer pipe problems.

How Can You Improve Your Well Water?

Sometimes installing city water can be too expensive and not worth the trouble. However, this means you must improve the water from the well to serve the purpose of the city water. Following are the various ways you can improve it.

1. Preventing contaminants

Contamination is among the main reasons most well owners switch to city water. You can prevent contamination by avoiding pesticides, fuel, fertilizers, and other pollutants near the well.

2. Regular Testing

Regularly testing the water can help you discover health-threatening contaminants on time and avoid getting sick. A water well inspection can cost between $300 and $500, which is worth it compared to your health.

3. Store emergency backup water

Store water in backup tanks to avoid desperations during the power outage period.

Should I Connect to The City Water or Keep Using Well Water?

The decision to switch or keep using the well water varies from one person to the other. However, you can base your choice on several factors, including;

1. Cost

City water can be expensive in terms of monthly bills, device maintenance, and regular check-up fees. The well water is also costly to maintain, as well as the pumping by using electricity. 

2. Reliability

The well water is reliable as it is already in your compound when you need it. However, without backup tanks, power loss can cause shortages. On the other hand, city water is reliable unless damages occur and take too long to repair.

3. Cleanliness

Despite being rich in minerals, the water from the well is at high risk of contamination. City water is regularly tested and has fewer chances of getting contaminated.


Well water is essential for general home use and in improving the market value of a home. However, in most cases, it cannot serve all the needed purposes, and owners must seek other options. Among the options is the city water, which is more reliable and readily available.

However, most city water management doesn’t agree to connect their water to a system using a well because of contamination. Their options include separating both sources or implementing some measures, which can be expensive. However, you can decide to improve your well or connect to the city water based on the provided factors.