Although water provides zero calories or nutrients, it is vital for all life forms, from microscopic bacteria to gigantic creatures.

Water is life, no doubt! But sometimes, whether it is while brushing our teeth or washing our veggies, we forget the need to preserve this golden form of life. We leave the tap running as if the world has not been facing any water problems.

Here you will find a list of 50 interesting facts about water that might surprise or shock you. Hopefully, some of the facts below will make you look at your glass of water differently. In contrast, others might remind you to be mindful of your elaborative water consumption.

For starters, the glass of water on your desk is one of the most primitive forms on Earth.

Frozen ground - facts of water
Frozen Ground in Norway (source)

Table of Contents

Water and Planet

  1. Comets and asteroids have provided all of Earth’s water. Enjoy your cup of tea; it arrived 4 billion years ago during a period known as the Late Heavy Bombardment! 
  2. 70.9 percent of the planet’s surface is covered by water. The ocean has 7.97 percent of the world’s water; 2.5 percent is inaccessible freshwater (locked in glaciers, underground, etc.); and 0.5 percent is available freshwater.
  3. Groundwater is 20 to 30 times more abundant than all of the United States’ lakes, streams, and rivers at any given time. 
  4. If the entire world’s water could be crammed into a four-liter container, the amount of freshwater available to us would be less than one tablespoon.
  5. Antarctica contains more than 90% of the world’s freshwater supply in the form of ice sheets.
  6. Water regulates the temperature of the Earth. 
  7. The amount of water on Earth today is roughly the same as it was millions of years ago.
  8. The atmosphere contains more water than all of our rivers combined.
  9. Only about an inch of water would cover the entire world if all of the water vapor in our planet’s atmosphere converted into the water at the same time and spread out evenly.
  10. A water molecule spends ninety-eight years in the ocean, twenty months as ice, two weeks in rivers and lakes, and less than a week in the atmosphere throughout a century. The dinosaur most likely drank and passed out the water you’re drinking right now!

Water Scarcity around the World

  1. Every hour, 200 children are killed by contaminated water
  2. There are 748 million people in the globe who do not have access to safe drinking water. And every year, the number keeps upsurging at an accelerated rate.
  3. 1.8 billion people throughout the world drink feces-contaminated water. 
  4. The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends two gallons per person per day to meet most people’s needs under most circumstances and five gallons per person per day to cover basic sanitation and food hygiene needs. 
  5. South African mothers and children trek the equivalent of 16 trips to the moon and back to gather water daily. Africans alone spend 40 billion hours collecting water.
  6. Compared to the previous century, water consumption has increased more than twice that of population growth. All the more reason not to leave the tap running!
  7. A day’s worth of food for a household of four requires approximately 6,800 gallons of water.
  8. From 3000 BC to 2012, there have been 265 documented instances of water conflicts.

Water and Life

Drinking water - water facts
A little girl drinking water during her breakfast (source)
  1. An average human body is made up of 55 to 65 percent of water.
  2. Water makes up 70% of the human brain. Did you realize you had so much liquid in your head?
  3. New-borns have considerably more water content in their system, as much as 78 percent.
  4. Water is responsible for 80% of all sickness in underdeveloped countries. Don’t take the safety of your drinking water for granted!
  5. Drinking excessive amounts of water can be life-threatening (known as water intoxication).
  6. Children consume seven times as much water per pound as the average American adult in their first six months of life.
  7. We give out a little more than a cup of water (237 ml) per day when we exhale.

Unusual Properties of Water

Frozen ball -water facts
Macro view of frozen winter ball (source)
  1. Water weighs 8.34 pounds per gallon and 62.4 pounds per cubic foot.
  2. A liter of water weighs one kilogram, while a cubic meter weighs one metric ton.
  3. Water has a greater capacity for dissolving things than any other liquid, including sulphuric acid.
  4. As the amount of salt dissolved in water grows, the freezing point of the water decreases. This drop explains why lakes freeze faster than the oceans.
  5. In some cases, hot water will freeze faster than cold water. (commonly known as the Mpemba effect)
  6. Seawater freezes at -2°C (28.4°F) with average salt levels. Water expands about 9 percent as it solidifies.
  7. Water is the only substance on the planet found in all three states: liquid, gas, and solid!

How to save water?

swimming - water facts
Teen enjoying the water (source)
  1. Because the average faucet releases 2 gallons of water each minute, turning off the tap while brushing your teeth can save you up to four gallons of water every morning.
  2. Evaporation causes a loss of around 1,000 gallons (3,785 liters) of water every month from a swimming pool.
  3. Every day, a running toilet can waste up to 200 gallons of water.
  4. A bath can use up to 70 gallons of water, while a five-minute shower can use anywhere from 10 to 25 gallons.
  5. A faucet can leak 3,000 gallons per year if it drips once every second.

Around the world!

water splash - water facts
Water splash (source)
  1. Every day, the average person in the United States drinks about 100 gallons of water.
  2. A European person uses approximately 50 gallons of water per day on average.
  3. The water delivery system in New York City wastes 33 to 37 million gallons of water every day due to leaks.

How much water does it take?

watering - water facts
A little kid watering his garden (source)
  1. It takes around 2,641 gallons of water to create a good pair of jeans. No wonder the go-green movement is jeans-free!
  2. More than 3900 liters of water is required to create 2.2 pounds of beef.
  3. Almost 1000 gallons of water are required to produce 2.2 pounds of rice.
  4. Manufacturing a brand-new car requires 39,090 gallons of water.
  5. About 3200 gallons of water are required to make one pound of chocolate.
  6. 2.6 liters of water is required to produce a single sheet of paper. It requires 6.3 gallons of water to manufacture 17 ounces of plastic.
  7. Three hundred tons of water is required to produce one ton of steel.
  8. One calorie of food requires 0.26 gallons of water for irrigation.
  9. The amount of water required to make coffee is more than double that needed to make tea. Maybe it’s time to make a move from coffee to tea!
  10. A round-trip flight from Los Angeles to San Francisco might cost you more than 9,000 gallons of water.

To conclude

Our list of 50 interesting facts about water ends here, but the jaw-dropping water facts have no end. Ranging from discovering water on the moon to disqualifying good old truths (such as the human body requires eight glasses of water per day), yet the water keeps surprising human beings now and then.

In any case, did you quench your curiosity?

(Last Updated on October 6, 2021 by Sadrish Dabadi)

Shradha Bhatta holds a Bachelors’s Degree in Social Work along with a Post-graduate degree in Project Management from Georgian College in Canada. Shradha enjoys writing on a variety of topics and takes pleasure in discovering new ideas. She likes traveling and spending time with nature. She is a very people-person who loves talking about climate change and alerting people to go green!