Water Well Drilling

Frequently Asked Questions

Domestic Water wells are our main focus at Mountain Drilling, and we have the knowledge, experience, and equipment to help you get the most water. When it's time to find your contractor a lot of questions come up. We have created this section to help in your decision making and have a clear understanding of a well drilling project.

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General Questions & Answers you may have about water well.

Pricing and Contracts


Questions relates to costs effectiveness and contract

Well and Geology Q&A

Questions regarding Well and geology


Some definitions of technical terms


Before you choose a bc well driller, you need to ask questions. Things you might want to know about the drilling company you choose should include the following.


Q: Will the driller meet my expectations?

A: Mountain Drilling has an unsurpassed reputation of customer satisfaction. Although water quality is not guaranteed, we are the only company to guarantee that you will find 770 us gal/ day or more in your well. Ask for references or generally ask around as we have given thousands of feet of drilling away for free. 


Q: Can the company drill where I want?

A: We recommend you choose the spot to drill with the help of a water witcher or dowser or have a hydrologist determine where to drill. In either case, Mountain drilling has the smallest footprint of any water well drilling company in BC and our family prides itself on getting into the spots the other drillers can’t. 

Once you have chosen a spot to drill for water, you need to ensure the following guidelines will also be met:

  • Your well must be 30 meters/  100’ from any septic system, including the field and the tank, both yours and your neighbor’s.

  • Your well must be at least 3 meters/ 10’ inside property lines, and 6 meters/ 20’ from any dwelling.

  • Always check for buried gas or electric lines in the area by making a BC One Call at 1-800-474-6886 or on your cell phone at *6886. You can also find information at www.clickbeforeyoudig.com.

Q: Is the company’s driller licensed?

A: Our owner and second generation driller was involved with getting the trade recognized in BC and is a Registered Qualified Well Driller with the BC Ministry of Environment, Water Stewardship Division. 

Q: How long have you been a driller?

A: Our family has been drilling since 1981 and Derek has been drilling since 1986 

Q: Are you licensed by/registered with the province?

A: Yes, since 1992. Our family was involved in the BC water well licensing 

Q: Do you Provide a Well Record? 

A: Mountain Drilling will provide you with a construction well record (well log). 


Q: How do you determine the required depth of a well?

The depth of a well is a determining factor in figuring the basic cost of drilling and the cost of pipe, because most drillers charge by the foot. A Mountain Drilling will base estimates on what experience shows is an average depth for your area. If the water first tapped is adequate for your family, then drilling can stop. If not, then drilling may have to go deeper.

Q: Do wells go dry?

A: Of all the well questions we get asked, this is probably the most common. In short, yes, sometimes a well dries up. It doesn’t happen very often though. If you are experiencing a water shortage with your BC water well, the problem may be as simple as a screen clogged with debris. In rare cases, a well may need to be drilled deeper to reach additional groundwater.


Q: What stage of new construction do you normally drill?

A: For our clients who are building new homes or other buildings that require a freshwater supply, we have several options for well production. When planning to build, be sure to talk to a licensed, experienced BC well driller like Mountain Drilling who can answer your well questions and ensure the safety of your project.


Q: How do I find out about well depths in my area?

A: For a well question like that, just ask us! Send an email to Mountain Drilling including your contact information and the location you would like to have a well. We will do the geographic research for you and contact you directly with the results. Water tables and groundwater quality varies widely from place to place, even from property to neighboring property. Avoid the guesswork and let us do the hard work for you.

Q: I need a new drilled water well. Can you help me out?

A: Mountain Drilling will visit a site for free to assess the potential for drilling a well. We will be happy to assist you in making the best decision for you with multiple options.

General Question & Answers.

what should you ask a BC Well Driller?

Pricing & Contracts Questions and Answers


Q: How Cost-Effectiveness a well is?

A: Over the long term, the cost of water from your well will be pennies per day. Even factoring in construction and routine maintenance, a private well is still cost-effective when compared to other systems. 

Q: Are you providing your client a contract?

A: Mountain Drilling uses a written contract. The contract includes details of the job and warranties and guarantees

Q: What services are included in your standard well drilling contract?

A: All our pricing will be outlined in our contract and quote. 

Q: Are there additional fees or does the stated price include all typical services?

A: There are no hidden costs. 


Q: Does the stated price include site assessment?

A: Yes, a fee site assessment is our pleasure. 


Q: Does the stated price include preparation?

A: No. If needed, Site preparation is to be done before we arrive. 


Q: Does the stated price include site cleanup and restoration?

A: No, we leave the site as tidy as possible but there will be a pile of earth that was removed from the borehole that will look “messy”


Q: What type of guarantees do you provide for your work?

A: Mountain Drilling is the only company that offers “no charge for dry well” in BC. (Conditions apply, contact us for clarification)


Q: What type of warranties do you provide for installed equipment?

A: The work is warranted for one year.


Q: Can you provide customer endorsements and contact information?

A: Yes of course. Upon request 

Q: Is Mountain Drilling competitively priced?

A: The cheapest estimate is not necessarily the best, and you should not hire a driller solely based on the fact that they gave you the cheapest estimate. Most often then not this turns out bad as there ends up being hidden costs. Make sure that you are comparing apples to apples; ensure all estimates are inclusive.
Factors affecting cost include ground formulation (is it sand? gravel? bedrock?), how far it’s necessary to drill to find water and how much water is necessary to suit your needs.

Technical Questions & Answers


Q: How Much Water Do You Need?

A: Every well is different, and you need a well drilling company that knows exactly what your job requires. Discuss the size of your home, the amount of residents, and how much water is required for your property. An experienced well drilling company Mountain Drilling will be able to estimate how much water you will need.

Q: Can my well water be 10,000 years old?

A: Deep drilled wells are usually tapping into an aquifer that was deposited there during the glaciation of this area approximately 10 000 years ago. This water is unaffected by seasonal rainfalls and surface water so there is no change to flow rates. If you well are quite shallow, however, it might not be.

Q: Can earthquakes felt in British Colombia affect my well.  

A: Yes, an earthquake can have an effect on a well depending on the severity. The moment of tectonic plates creates earthquakes.

Q: Is it true the earth's crust moves under our feet?

A: Yes, It is true, tectonic plates move about 7.5 cm a year. The moment of the tectonic plate may affect subterranean water flow.

Q: What type of well do you recommend?

A: Depending on the site... a 6” well is adequate for domestic uses.  


Q: What type of pump do you generally install?

A: Mountain drilling doesn’t install pumps, but we will suggest a good pump company in your area. 


Q: What are common problems with wells in this area? (hard water, flow rate, etc.). Depending on your area, please contact us for more information 


Q: What strategies do you recommend to address those issues?

A: This is case by case. Please contact us for more information. 


Q: From start to finish, how long does the process generally take?

A: Depending on the geological conditions of your area of BC it could take 1 to 3 days. 

Q: Does Mountain Drilling understand the local geology?
A: An experienced well contractor knows about the geology of the area he or she drills and can clearly explain it to you. Give us a call at Mountain Drilling for more information about your area. 

Q: How can I define the required water quantity for my household?
A: Mountain Drilling can estimate the water requirements for your household. Help us by discussing things like the number of bathrooms, the number of people in the household or anticipated water use to irrigate lawns and gardens, spas, whirlpool baths, or pools.

Q: Can you define in advance the water quantity in a well? 
A: The quality and quantity of water from your well depends on the geology and hydrology of the area. Well water comes from underground aquifers, which exist throughout the ground at different depths. These “storage spaces” contain different amounts of water. Mountain Drilling cannot tell you exactly how deep we will have to go to get water. But an estimate can be based on other wells drilled in your area. In addition, Mountain Drilling cannot predict the exact quality of the water that will be tapped. What a contractor can do is make reasonable judgments about water quality based on previous experience. However, some regional districts have regulations on minimum quantity and water quality on newly drilled wells. Check with them for these regulations.


Q: How do you know when you’ve hit water ?

A: Drilling for water can be likened to hunting. The driller is looking for a “sign”. In this case, clean sand or gravel that may be water-bearing in the overburden or soft spots in the bedrock that may indicate cracks and crevices that can yield water. Careful observations and material sampling by the driller are required for the best result.

Q: Is it the deeper you go the better the H2O?

A: This is not always the case. What may be true for some locations is not the same for other places. Well depth doesn’t always dictate water quality. “Deep” is a relative term and while a 20-foot well may seem deep to one person, it is considered shallow to another. Shallower wells tend to be more vulnerable to water contamination. Proper well cleaning and maintenance will keep your water clean.


Q: Do you witch for water?

A: “Witching,” or dowsing, is an alleged way to locate water, oil, even gold, hidden underground. We have seen mixed results when drilling over witched well locations and have not found it to be more reliable than other means to pick a well location. That being said we have hit some really good wells when they are witched after struggling on a property to find water. In the end, if you want to have the site witched we will drill where you would like us to and do our honest best to yield the very best possible results. When we have trouble finding water we look to a few different techniques to find water depending on the lay of the land.



Groundwater is a safer water source than surface water because it is protected by soil or rock, and is not so easily contaminated. A properly constructed water well ensures that the water you drink is safe and clean. The components that make up a properly constructed water well include the following, and can be reviewed on the Ministry of Environment Groundwater Regulations.

Surface seal

This will protect the ground water aquifer from surface water contamination.


Drive shoe

The drive shoe is welded onto the first piece of casing and helps advance the casing into the ground. Mountain drilling uses drive shoes specially equipped to drill through boulders and solid rock.



The steel casing is used to case off overburden formation such as sand, gravel, small boulders, etc. We usually use 6” casing for domestic wells.


Bedrock drilling:

This is done without steel casing and is often called open-hole drilling.


Well Liner:

A 200 psi 4” PVC liner is used as a pump protector in bedrock holes. It protects your pump from rocks falling off the wall of the well, which could damage the pump or leave the pump stuck in the well. Some companies use a lighter PVC and this can lead to expensive problems later on. Do NOT let this happen to you. 



A standard stainless steel screen assembly includes all the materials you need to effectively screen out unwanted materials and is used in overburden wells if required.


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Don’t see your well question listed here?


Just give us a call!

The Mountain Drilling family is more than happy to answer any questions you have about well drilling. We are British Colombia’s leader in domestic water wells and pride ourselves on quality service and the best possible results. We are a family business after all and will do our best to serve your family, too.