What Are The Sources of Water-Surface and Subsurface Sources of Water

Water is the main constituent of the earth surface. You know that the chemical formula of water is H2O. Water occurs in liquid, solid(ice) and gas( water vapour). There are mainly two sources of water, surface source water and subsurface source water.

Sources of Water

1.Surface sources of water

Storage reservoirs

Storage reservoirs are the main sources of water for a city or town. Because storage reservoirs always have sufficient amount of water available during the summer and as well as in winter season. The capacity of the storage tank is determined by several methods. Read more in Water Supply System.


The lake water is pure compared to all other sources. The fresh water comes from the rock or surrounding area always drive under the filtration of soil. So impurities in lakes water will be less. Lake water has algae, weeds and other vegetables. It is one of the main surface sources of water.

Rivers or streams

The main use of the river is navigation between land. The river water is pure at mountains, but when it approaches plain area it will deteriorate due to the wastes from town or municipal areas. The river water flows and it reaches the sea. The main source of water to the wells is from runoff.


Ocean is the largest source of water in the earth. They cannot be used drinking or construction purpose due to high salinity of the water. The normal salt content for drinking purpose is 2 percent, but the salt content in seawater exceeds 3 percentage. So sea water damage human kidney system.


If you don’t know the meaning of precipitation, don’t worry. Precipitation is rain. Precipitation is also other pure water sources to the earth. You can read more about types of precipitation here.

Surface sources of water

2.Sub Surface sources of water

Infiltration galleries

A  horizontal tunnel usually rectangular in cross section. Infiltration galleries have permeable boundaries so that water can be filtrate into them.

Infiltration wells

It is shallow well constructed in series along the bank of the river. The surface water flowing through the river flow towards the well constructed in the bank of the river.

These wells contain only pure water. Because during their movement from the river to infiltration wills, the water purification takes place by filtration of soil.


Well is the main sub surface sources of water for houses. Usually, they are rounded shape and usually having a depth more 8 meters. The main sources of water to the wells are from infiltration of water through the soil. Two types of wells are there

  • Open wells-They have large diameter and low yield
  • Tube wells-They have small diameter, long pipe sunk into the ground intercepting one or more water-bearing strata.

I hope you could understand surface and subsurface sources of water. If you have any doubt, don’t shy to comment below. If you like this post? Don’t forget to share with your friends.

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