Purchasing property in order to erect a home in an area that is not connected to the central water supply presents you with a unique problem: determining where the well should be drilled. Running water constitutes a commodity that you can’t do without or, at the very least, its absence will pose numerous issues in the long run.

Your property and water sources

Constructing the building in the proximity of the well is recommended. Otherwise, you will be faced with major investments in the pipeline infrastructure and high maintenance costs. But the question remains: how do you determine the top drilling location, one that provides access to a substantial water supply without employing the trial and error methodology? After all, randomly drilling wells is not only tremendously expensive, but also risky and damaging to the landscape. You might end up drilling several wells without actually reaching water.

What are your options?

As it happens, you have several options when it comes to making an educated decision on the ideal location of the water well:

• Hiring dowsers

Experts have yet to reach a consensus on whether or not there is scientific basis to the process of locating water supplies using wishbone-like branches (typically willow) and “reading” the vibrations through the stick. However, there have been several documented cases of success. If you don’t mind the lack of technical evidence that could explain why the tip of the stick is drawn downwards whenever a water supply is near, you can always hire a dowser.

• Investigating vegetation

As a rule of thumb, plants with broader leaves tend to prefer locations that are rich in underground water. If you notice that certain sections of your property contain an abundance of plant life featuring broad leaves, then it is safe to assume an underground spring runs in its proximity.

• Using the topographical specifications

Landscape depressions – typically a valley or a gap – constitute superior drilling locations compared to the spots with a higher altitude. When you drill on a hilltop, for example, you will have to go much deeper to tap into the water supply. The closer you are to ground level, the less drilling will be required, and the lower expenses you’ll have to dish out for the operation.

• Searching for potential water springs

There’s no better indicator that the ground is saturated with water than the presence of an aboveground spring. Furthermore, springs can also confer a general idea regarding the direction and source of the water flowing underneath your property. A sizable stream might even be harvested as-is, eliminating the need to drill.

• Conducting a geographical survey

Geographical surveys provide important clues regarding the underground water. A skilled geologist relies on various soil/rock formations to determine the probability of finding a water supply. For instance, the existence of stress-caused fractures in the bedrock could indicate a stream running underneath it, causing erosion.

Additional considerations

It’s advisable to drill the water well according to the local business codes, in order to avoid legal issues. Planning the positioning of the sewage/septic lines in such a way that they don’t intersect with the water feed ensures that your supply does not get contaminated in case corrosion and other factors affect the integrity of the pipelines.