Private water supplies

A private water supply is any supply that is intended for human consumption and is not provided by a water company such as United Utilities. The source of the supply may be a well, borehole, spring or stream and may serve just one property or several.

If you are served by a public mains supply provided by United Utilities this page is not applicable to you.

Local authorities are required to regulate these private supplies under the Private Water Supplies Regulations 2009 and to take enforcement action to ensure that the supply meets the statutory drinking water standards specified in the regulations. The regulations impose new sampling and monitoring duties and require the local authority to carry out a risk assessment every 5 years for all supplies other than those to a single domestic dwelling.

Sampling is required on private supplies used as part of a commercial or public activity and for supplies serving more than one premises. Supplies to single domestic properties can be sampled upon request.

The 2009 Regulations are to be updated in 2016 to include assessments for radioactivity (radon). General advice on private supplies can be found at the following websites:

Last updated: 05 April 2017