How Much To Dig A Well? – Cost You Must Want To Know

The fact that a well is a dependable off-grid source of water and eliminates the need for public utilities is one reason why many people desire one.

A trend toward DIY well digging has emerged because hiring a professional to drill a well can be very expensive.

Here are the costs involved in digging or drilling your own well, as well as whether those DIY well kits are worthwhile.

Professional Well Drilling Costs

The price of a professional well varies greatly depending on the type of soil, access, required permits, and required depth of the well.

Typically, drilling costs between $9 and $30 per foot, plus an additional $6 to $20 per foot for the casing.

With all additional costs tallied, you can expect professional good drilling to cost at least $1,750.

Residential wells typically cost between $3,750 and $15,300.

Residential Water Wells

Residential construction initiatives typically cost less. Drilling costs between $15 and $30 per foot, before considering additional installation needs. Compared to the systems covered below, small wells are subject to less regulation.

It is an easy procedure. After the hole has been bored, it must be enclosed and connected to your water lines. To account for varying soil and rock types, deep holes might need several drill bits. Although capping the hole and connecting to your water line increase costs, most professionals include multiple drill bits in their initial quote.

Shallow Wells

Shallow wells cost between $1,800 and $3,000, with most people paying around $2,400. This equates to between $5 and $10 per cubic yard. The typical depth and diameter of shallow wells are 25–50 feet and 3–10 feet, respectively.

However, they are also notoriously difficult to protect from contamination and yield less than full-depth wells, despite being a cost-effective option in areas with little bedrock and a lot of large rocks in the ground.

Irrigation Or Agricultural Wells

Per foot, expect to pay between $35 and $55 for agricultural and commercial uses. These expenses only apply to drilling, but they take into account the trickier procedure.

To take into account more volume, the borehole needs to be bigger and frequently deeper. State-by-state variations in water quality regulations can be very strict, necessitating additional purification steps.

What Elements Affect The Well Drilling Cost?

The price of drilling a well is influenced by numerous factors. Materials, well depth, piping type, and the complexity of your project are among these factors.

Well Depth

Costs for good projects are difficult to estimate precisely because averages greatly vary depending on the depth of the well. You’ll need to speak to a local well pump expert to determine the ideal digging depth for your home.

  • Most projects drill between 100 to 400 feet.
  • To reach groundwater, you must dig an additional foot, which will raise the project’s cost.
  • It’s possible that shallow water sources are unsuitable for use because they’re typically more contaminated.


Your final cost will depend on the local soil and water conditions. For instance, in California, you must drill a deeper well to reach the water table, which is below the groundwater level. Arizona’s desert climate is home to rocky, dry soils that make it more difficult to drill a well.

Sometimes, the water table could be as shallow as 25 feet or as deep as 1,000 feet. Digging each foot will add $15 to $60 to your bill, which means your final price can vary widely.

Distance To The Home

Your costs will decrease the closer the well is to your house. A shorter distance decreases the length of water and electric supply lines that run between your home and the well—which cost between $50 and $150 per foot.


Well Pump

Water is extracted from the ground and delivered to your home by a good pump. It’s one of a water well’s most crucial components. For this reason, it’s a good idea to have a local well repair service pro in your contacts list should the pump fail.

Well, pumps range from $300 to $2,000. Your overall cost will depend on your need for a shallow or deep well pump, the distance to the storage tank, any unique inclines, and whether your pump is above ground or buried below the water table.

Reasons Not To Drill Your Own Well

Owning your own well may not be a good idea, even if it is legal to drill or dig one. It’s important to be realistic even though I don’t want to discourage people from using the DIY method.

The following are a few reasons why you shouldn’t drill your own well.

Might Not Be Possible

If you need a deep well or rocky soil, DIY well drilling equipment simply won’t do. Spending money on unnecessary equipment will be the result.

Though it’s nearly impossible to find a business that will rent you their professional drill rig, renting professional equipment is theoretically an option.

Easy To Screw Up

Digging your own well is challenging, despite how simple the YouTube videos and online tutorials make it seem. The learning curve is very steep.

Unlike many other DIY home projects, this is not something you can learn “along the way.” You risk making disastrous errors if you do.

If not done properly, you might, for instance, get surface water in the water table. Not only would you contaminate your well, but the water of everyone else at that table.


DIY wells may be dangerous. Hand-dug wells are particularly hazardous because it only takes a small cave-in to become trapped inside the well. Utilizing new equipment entails risks as well.

Equipment For Digging Your Own Well

This is the equipment you typically need to dig a well, though it varies depending on the type of well.

1. Drill Rig

The additional well drilling equipment is stored on the drill rig. Although it can be a straightforward triangle structure, a vertical stand is more common. You might not even need a drill rig if using a hand auger for an extremely shallow well.

2. Motor

While drilling a shallow well by hand is certainly a possibility, using a motor will make the process simpler. I’ve heard of individuals who modify post-hole digger equipment to dig wells.

For deeper wells, you’ll require both an air compressor and a pneumatic drill. Most often, you can rent these. You’ll need to rent a truck-mounted drilling machine if you want an even deeper well or have difficult soil.

3. Well Drill Bits Or Drill Point

The component that bites into the soil is the well drill bit or point. Depending on the soil and rocks, there are different types of well bits. You can create your own drill auger bit by giving the end of PVC pipe teeth.

4. Pump

As you drill the well hole, the pump uses water to flush it.

5. Stem

The drill bit is attached to the rig by the stem. Usually, there are several pieces to the stem. You add another piece of the stem to the one you already have so you can dig farther into the ground.

6. Drilling Additives

You might need to use drilling additives like liquid polymers or clay powder. These keep the well hole from collapsing as you drill.

7. Casing

By keeping the well hole open and guarding against collapse, the casing is.

8. Well Screen

The well screen is at the bottom of the well hole. It has hundreds or even thousands of minuscule slits that permit water to pass through but barricade out debris like sand.