Commonly Used Well Drilling Techniques

Well-drilling for water has been used since ancient times.  The first water wells were dug around 8000 years ago, with the intention of being able to supply clean water to developing civilizations. While times have changed, our need for water hasn’t. Drilling for water in South Florida is not always easy!

When drilling for water, there are two things you need to keep in mind, the first being the method which should match the area’s geology and the second being costs. If your intention is to dig a single well for water on the property, manual drilling is going to be cheaper overall. However, the technique chosen all depends on soil conditions and how deep you’ll need to dig to reach the water.

Manual Well Drilling Methods

You might be assuming that digging for water is like making your way through a muddy hole, as you pass up buckets of mud. While hand digging is the oldest form of drilling a well and is labor-intensive, there are a couple of different techniques.

Some common techniques include sludging, drive point, hand auguring, and manual percussion. All of these techniques work well, but it depends on the size and depth of the well you intend on digging.

The biggest drawback of using manual techniques is its inherent inefficiency. While the technique may work for digging a single well on your property, it isn’t going to be practical if you need multiple wells dug. After all, having to hire a crew for repeated well drilling is way too intensive.

Mechanical Well Drilling Methods

Mechanical drilling does not rely on large crews or a lot of hard work. The system uses machines equipped with gears, motors, and fuel that can drill through tough soil and rock. It is much faster as you’d imagine, and machines make it possible to dig deeper for water, making it ideal for areas where the water table may be several hundred feet below ground.

Mud Rotary

The concept of a mud rotary drill rig is very similar to another technique called jetting. This well drilling technique requires adding a cutting bit, and lengths of steel pipe that have threaded joints, which turn and lift powered by a motor.

A mud rotary drill will mix materials like bentonite clay in the water that’s jetted out to improve its ability to cut. A powerful mud rotary drill rig can reach depts of up to 3281 feet or 1000 meters.

Deciding on the Right Technique

Most homeowners may not now which well drilling technique is right for what they want. By default, the most economical for a homeowner will be the manual technique. However, it is incredibly time-consuming, and not many people may want to entertain the idea of labor on their property for perhaps the next few weeks.

If in doubt as to which well-drilling technique will work best, we recommend you consult with a contractor. Most businesses will be more than happy to recommend a method based on what you want and where you are located. 

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