Non-potable water is water that is unsafe for human consumption. It does not have the safe qualities of drinking water, but can still be used for other purposes.
Non-potable water comes from a variety of sources, including recycled water, rainwater and reclaimed water. It can be used for washing clothes and flushing toilets, however, it remains raw water that is untreated. While non-potable water may not possess an unpleasant smell or taste, if consumed, it carries the risk of illness. People can get sick from drinking non-potable water either as a result of its chemical contaminants or from bacterial and parasitic microorganisms.