Mexico Essentials

Water Services in Mexico

Properties in urban areas are usually supplied by mains water, but properties elsewhere need to make alternative arrangements

Water facet and glass

Water in Mexico is delivered to properties via mains-feed, or a communally-run feed from local water springs or wells, a water well situated on or near the property itself, or a combination of rain collection and local water delivery by truck.

Mains-fed water: At properties situated in most of Mexico’s urban towns and cities, water is provided by a mains-feed system with the property also connected to a mains-sewerage system.  The pressure of these systems varies and you may need to use a pump or hydraulic system on-site to increase the pressure for use around the home. Mains-fed water is usually metered at a rate per cubic meter charged to the property.  (One cubic meter of water is equal to 1,000 liters of water.)  Rates vary by state and by even neighborhood in towns and cities—check locally for details.  Prices are affordable, and the rate includes the mains sewerage fees.

Communal water feed: Where properties are situated outside of main cities and towns, and especially in semi-rural and rural areas, a water mains-feed is probably not available and in these situations, the property might be supplied by water from a communally-run local water feed system. Where a communal water feed system is available, its water is usually sourced from local springs or water wells connected to a local pipe network.  A master tap is opened for several hours once or twice a week, which feeds water from the local system into underground cisterns on the properties which are served by the pipe network.  These systems are not ‘metered’ per house, but an annual fee is payable to the local municipality, and rates vary.

Rainwater and private wells: In absence of a mains-fed or local communal water system, water supply to the home will depend on a private well on-site (or near the property with permission to draw water from it) or, more usually, collecting rain water in season and topping this up with deliveries from water trucks, especially during the dry season.  Water delivery trucks source their water from local springs or water wells and typically dispense up to 10 cubic meters of water (10,000 liters) into an underground cistern on the property.  Prices per cubic meter vary by region.  There are 3.78 liters in 1 US gallon; therefore 10,000 liters is equivalent to approximately 2,645 US gallons.

Sewerage: Properties in urban areas with mains-fed water can usually connect to a mains sewerage system.  Where a connection to the mains sewer is not possible (or there is no mains sewer in the area) the property will need a septic tank system on-site to deal with its sewerage. The septic tank collects the waste water and uses a natural process to manage the waste, recycling it and its residue nutrients back into the ground.  Properly cared for, septic tanks require little or no maintenance and if you have a garden, the nutrients from it will nourish the soil.

Note About Water Purity

In most cases, water sourced from local wells, springs, and truck deliveries needs to be run through a filter system that makes it fit for personal consumption. In Mexico, it’s common to use bottled water for drinking.

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