About Water Well Drilling
"Great News about your Water Well"
What is Ground Water?
Ground water is water below the land surface that fills the spaces between grains
of sediment and rocks, or fills cracks and fractures in the rock. Saturated zones
in sediment such as sand and gravel, and in fractured rock formations, that receive,
store, and transmit water to wells are called aquifers. Clean and plentiful ground
water is a vital resource for personal and economic health everywhere in the United
States. Each day, over 130 million Americans get their drinking water from ground
water. About 40 million are supplied from individual home wells. Ground water is
a safe, economic and environmentally friendly resource. We don't need to dam up
rivers and disturb ecology to store water. Mother Nature has made the rocks of the
earth as a natural storage place for ground water. We can all play a role in protecting
America's ground water. Private well owners have a special responsibility to ensure
the safety of their drinking water.
The Hydrologic Cycle:
Water in aquifers comes from rain and melted snow that filters through the soil.
As the water moves down, plants consume a portion, some is evaporated, and some
is retained by the soil. The rest seeps downwards, usually very slowly, to add water
to the aquifer. This process is part of the hydrolic cycle. The amount and quality
of ground water varies from place to place both within individual states and from
state to state, because geology, climate, and land use are different. The quality
of water from wells can be influenced by:
- Natural factors, such as the type of rock, gravel, sand or soil.
- Or by pollution, for example, from poorly managed agriculture, inferior septic systems
or community waste disposal sites.
Public education about contamination, and community involvement in protecting aquifers,
can help ensure safe drinking water throughout the United States.
How do we get Ground Water?
In most cases, a water well is needed to reach the aquifer where ground water is
found. Today, most wells are made by drilling into the rock layers using drilling
machines (rigs) to access water deep beneath the surface. In most cases electric
pumps are used to raise the water to the surface. The creation of a water well consists
of several elements. After selecting the site to drill the well, the process usually
included drilling, development, testing and equipment installation. A water well
is a specially engineered hole in the ground. It should be located and constructed
in a manner which meets all the codes and guidelines. Proper construction and location
is of most importance, to help ensure safe drinking water. Your County health officers,
local code enforcers and ground water contractors can give you advice on proper
well location and construction
How much Water do you need?
If you plan wisely, a good, dependable water well can supply you with all the water
you need now and in the future. A rule of thumb is to allow for between 75 and 150
gallons per person per day. You need to take into account the peak demand, for example,
when there may be extra guests. The amount of water expected for domestic supply
is usually 4-10 gallons per minute. However, with an adequate storage tank, a well
producing as little as one gallon per minute can be sufficient for domestic needs.
In many wells, several hundred gallons of water are already stored in the well column.
For every foot of a 6 inch diameter well below the water level, there are about
1 1/2 gallons of water. Outside use of water can pose much greater demands. You
need to calculate the required well yield if your well is needed for additional
water uses such as: swimming pool, lawn and garden irrigation, fire protection,
Some facts to remember:
- Studies show that most Americans would prefer their own private water well.
- You can decide how to treat your well water if you so desire.
- You may not ever have to worry about water restrictions.
- A good properly constructed water well will be an asset to your property,
- After the initial cost of installing a well and pump system, your water is virtually
free. Even with budgeting for future service, it will more than likely be less expensive
than pipe line water.
This information was obtained from pamphlets printed and copyrighted by the: American Ground Water Trust
Your local Ground Water Contractor may be able to provide these pamphlets or you
can visit the American Ground Water Trust at www.agwt.org for more information.