Tap water is supposed to be safe to consume, bathe in, and cook food in, but for many people, that's not actually the case. You don't have to look any farther than places like Flint, Michigan, to recognize that not everyone receives the water quality that they deserve, and unfortunately, you might be one of them. If you've been working under the assumption that your water is safe to drink, you might want to take a look at this guide to find out if that's actually the case.
When you get water from the city, typically that water falls under the rules and regulations of the municipal controls. The city or county will have its own water treatment facility that is supposed to screen the water quality and ensure that everyone is getting safe water. While this is the case, as previously mentioned, that isn't always how it turns out. It will ultimately be a case-by-case basis, and depending on where your water is coming from, it may not be safe. This is even more true if you rely upon well water, as well water isn't screened by anyone for safety.
Your Own Pipes
Perhaps the water coming from your city is perfectly safe, free of lead, and good to consume. Even so, your own home may be tainting that water before it reaches you.
Older homes often used pipes containing lead for water to run through. As these pipes continue to age, they often start to break down and end up leaching lead into the water that passes through them. Lead can be extremely dangerous for everyone, but especially children, where it can cause developmental defects particularly in the brain.
What to Do
The easy solution here is simply water testing. It's an easy process to go through. Someone will come out, take a sample of your water, and will then send it to a lab to be processed. There, they'll test it for substances like lead, pesticides, and heavy metals. The lab report will be sent back to you in a way that is easy to read and understand so that you can figure out exactly what's in your water supply.
If your water is safe, then the process is complete; you can drink your water without worrying. But if it's unsafe, you have your work cut out for you. You can start by getting a whole-home filtration system that will take those nasty substances out of your water and make it safe to use. You may also want to contact your municipal water supplier and find out what's going on.