How to Drill a Well

September 8, 2021

Wouldn’t it be great if we can rid ourselves of utility bills completely?

Think about it: Not paying a single cent for electricity is already possible if your home is rocking solar panels. You don’t have to fork over cash for the gas bill if you have an electric heat pump. But what about the monthly water dues?

You only need to look at humankind’s history for the answer. We’ve been digging water wells since ancient times before utility bills even existed!

So now, the only question remaining is how to drill a well.

That’s what we’re going to cover in this blog post. Please continue reading to learn more about the process of well drilling and what you need to know to have your very own water well.

Planning and Preparation

Any project that wants to succeed needs a healthy dose of planning and preparation. Get yourself ready for a lot of research and legwork. That’s before even thinking about hiring a professional well drilling service or tackling the project yourself.

First, you must know your state or county’s requirements and regulations for drilling a well and secure the needed permits. You also have to consult local geological survey records to find out the depth and location of aquifers. You should also know the location of all nearby septic systems and the minimum required distance from any septic system to your well.

Ways on How to Drill a Well

Most wells are drilled out using power equipment, but they can also be driven or dug manually. Here are some of the most common methods used by a well drilling team.

1. Digging or Boring With an Auger

You can dig out a well with shovels or power equipment as long as there’s sufficient water near the surface. You can also use an auger turned by hand or machine-driven. These methods work best if there’s no dense rock to dig through to get to the water.

Dug wells typically have a large diameter and are shallow, about ten to thirty feet deep. They’re cased with stones, brick, or tile and sealed against contamination.

2. Driving a Pipe Into the Ground

Driven wells use a solid pipe with a steel-driving point to penetrate the aquifer. The assembly is pounded into the ground and occasionally rotated until it reaches the water table. The well can be hand-driven to about thirty feet and power-driven to depths of fifty feet.

3. Rotary Drilling

A rotary drilling machine can reach depths of a thousand feet or more. Rotary drills use a “drilling mud” made of bentonite clay to lift the cuttings out of the hole and keep the borehole open. A rotary-drilled well has a lower risk of contamination due to the depth and use of continuous steel casing.

4. Using a Percussion Cable

Heavy percussion machines work like pile drivers. A bit or tool moves up and down to smash into the ground. It can pulverize rock and boulder formations that would give rotary bits and other types of drills trouble.

Percussion-driven wells can reach the same depth as rotary-driven wells.

Ready to Dig Deep for Water Self-Sufficiency?

About 13 million Americans have already taken the plunge to secure usable water for their property. Now that you learned how to drill a well and what you should know beforehand, are you ready to get down and dirty for it? By completing this project, that’s one less utility bill to bother you every month!

For more home improvement tips, feel free to browse our site.


Carlos Diaz
I believe in making the impossible possible because there’s no fun in giving up. Travel, design, fashion and current trends in the field of industrial construction are topics that I enjoy writing about.

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One comment on “How to Drill a Well”

  1. Now I know more about water well drilling and how you sing a percussion machine can be beneficial if you are dealing with big rocks and stones while digging. I'm looking into this Sims I want to have this fixture in my residential property near the suburbs. I wonder what equipment the contractors who will use for this project.

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