Facts to Know About Drilling A Well In The Greater Phoenix, Arizona Area
There are four major steps involved in constructing a well:
1. drilling the hole
2. installing the casing
3. well development; and
4. pump installation or capping.
The cost of a well depends on its size, depth, and location. It is good to compare estimates from several drillers to be sure you are getting the best value for your money. Remember, the lowest price may not be the best deal.
You may wish to talk with several drillers before selecting one.
When talking with drillers, ask for the names of former customers in your area. Find out if they were satisfied with the driller’s work.
You should also ask the driller questions about the work that will be completed and the payment of fees. Will you receive a written agreement or contract that spells out an understanding of the work to be done? Does the contract include all the details and costs (including materials) of the well construction? A written contract can help avoid costly misunderstandings.
Make sure the driller you intend to hire is licensed.
All well drillers must be licensed by both ADWR and the State Registrar of Contractors (ROC.) You can find out if a specific driller is licensed by contacting ADWR or the Registrar of Contractors. The category of license required by the ROC for residential or domestic water wells is a C-53. Before signing a contract with a well driller, you should read it carefully to make sure it includes:
A cost estimate, including materials and labor charges
A target date for completing the well
Detailed well specifications, such as diameter and depth
Specific information about the surface seal
The driller’s plans for developing the well
The method to be used for the yield test
The kinds of materials to be installed, such as the type and quality of casing; the drive shoe, if necessary; the type and quality of well screen; the pump (if your driller is providing the pump); and all other pieces of equipment
Procedures and costs for abandoning or permanently closing the well if it cannot be used
Locating a Well
An important factor to consider when constructing a well is where to locate it. You will probably want to put your well close to where you will use the water and close to a power source. This will reduce your construction and energy costs.
To protect the quality of your water, the state has adopted rules about well location. All wells must be at least 100 feet from septic tanks or sewage disposal areas. Check with your neighbors to make sure your proposed well is at least 100 feet away from their septic systems. It is preferable to locate a well uphill from septic systems and as far away as practical. Before drilling you should also check to see if your county health department has additional regulations affecting well location.
Here are three recommendations about locating your well:
1. It is important to direct surface water drainage away from your well. If it is located on a hill, divert the up slope
drainage around or away from the well. It is preferable not to drill your well in an area that floods. If you must,
take extra precautions to protect it, such as installing a pitless adaptor which allows you to pump and pipe water
under the ground.
2. You should leave enough room around your well for easy access during drilling, maintenance, repair and testing.
3. It is preferable to locate your well as far away from neighboring wells as possible. Wells that are close together
can interfere with each other, producing less water. You can contact ADWR’s Water Rights Records Section to
find the locations of other wells in your area.
Selecting a Pump
The pump is a very important component of the well system and should be selected carefully. The pump size should be based on the well casing size and the quantity of water needed. If you choose a pump with a capacity greater than the well yield, you may get muddy or sandy water or the well and pump may fail. When selecting a pump, choose a design that will produce enough water yet will keep energy use to a minimum. Consult with your pump installer to select the best equipment for your needs. When installing new pump equipment, be sure to obtain a copy of the warranty covering the pump.
Make sure your driller properly develops and disinfects your well.
To disinfect a well, chlorine must be added. Various methods can be used to do this. However, with any procedure the concentration of chlorine in the well should be at least 50 milligrams per liter. This work should be performed by your licensed driller.
Arizona Department of Water Resources
3550 N. Central Avenue
Phoenix, AZ 850012 (602) 771-8500
Groundwater Management Support Section: (602) 771-8535
Primary point of contact for questions pertaining to the filing of Notice of Intention to Drill (NOI) forms, well
construction and the licensing of well drillers
Water Rights Records Section: (602) 771-8649
3550 N. Central Avenue
Phoenix, Arizona 85012