Ground Water - A Quick Guide

Ground water a quick guide - water well drilling cost saskatchewan

Ground Water - A Quick Guide

Know what you’re asking and getting for your money.

The cheapest route is often a Sand Point.  It is generally an augured hole no deeper than 25ft and is usually very slim casing around 2 inches to 4 inches (outside diameter) t.  The intake beneath the ground is slotted plastic casing. 

Auger and flighted stem is the most common install and drilling muds are generally not required for such shallow depths.  If the hole collapses it can be washed in or it can be re-drilled relatively inexpensively Pros: cost, cost of pump is also cheaper as it uses a jet pump from in the house to pull water up the line from the well.  Easy access to replace said pump in the future.  Cons: rely upon surface precipitation.  Can dry out and can fluctuate with water available based on seasonal changes.    Can be easily contaminated by poor water quality at the surface.  Can be problematic for small pebbles migrating into the plastic slots and reducing flow over time, can be also problematic for drift (migration) of material that the pump then sucks up.  There is generally no filter cake around the annulus of this type of sand point.  (no uniform sand filter that is installed around the plastic screens). 

Large Diameter wells are known as big bore wells that are also fairly close to the surface, generally targeting sand less than 60ft but greater than 20-25ft.  Submersible pump is installed into the well and pumped to the house.  The bore hole is generally 30-inch fiberglass cribbing and requires high quality of sand/fine gravel mix to fill the well annulus (outside of casing).  The tend to be slower producing wells but rely upon larger holding capacity to provide water to the household.  Pros: Pump and materials has easy access big bore.  Cons: Pump is more expensive than a jet pump. Cost of aggregate for annulus is variable based on region. Some will opt for cheaper material and it has/does effect pump rate. Cost for aggregate can be $900 to $2,000 above the cost of the well. This style is often classified as a drift formation and it might be variable and difficult to target so often an augured test hole(s) is needed prior.    30-inch cribbing can be dangerous for children and pets.  It is important to have a lock on them.  Often it may take a few auger attempts with a separate smaller rig to find a formation that will yield well results.  It is important to search thoroughly before investing money into the cost of the big bore.    This additional testing has some extra costs and mileage.   With the aggregate and additional test holes, hidden costs can increase quickly.

Small Diameter wells are only similar in concept to a Sand Point, but the materials used are top quality (heavy PVC and stainless-steel screens).  We use 250 PSI heavy walled telescopic casing (not all companies do) and stainless steel screens that are 5 inch diameter (some companies cut costs by putting in smaller screens which can effect overall pump rates) .   This larger screen allows for screens to be placed inside of screens if that ever is needed.  They tend to have a long life, as they pull water from deeper sources that are generally less reliant on rain fall to recharge the aquifer.  Annulus of this style of well uses either a crushed product or better yet a manmade glass bead that is pre-packaged.  The better the sand filter cake the less opportunity for migration of fine particles.  A proper annulus should be around 1.5 to 2 inch outside the stainless-steel screens.  The screens are precision wire wrapped cages. The wire is triangular shaped, and it is designed to help reduce natural material from the aquifer from entering the well itself (unlike sand points or LS wells).  Pros: Reliability is over better in the long term.  Less opportunity for contamination.   Wider casing and screens allow for lots of possibilities in the event (65 yrs. from now) than a well repair is required. When water options are known to be deeper it is the only cost-effective method to utilize deep formations. 

SD wells range provincially 60ft, 80ft, all the way to 1,400ft in the south of the province.   220ft around Humboldt.  500ft near Raymore.  We use fluid replying and mud handling that controls all muds and provides a cleaner mud. Con: Often driller and companies will be deceptive because that data shared with the government does not ask for ID (inside) or OD (outside) measurements.  So, in later years when the pit-less adaptor needs a repair the casing dimensions are deceptive.   Drillers will knowingly sell 4.5 diameter casing as 5 inches.   Yet when we order it, it is classified as casing and we order all casing by inside diameter never outside diameter.  Cost can be comparable to a 50ft LD well.  Pumps costs can be variable based on draw, push and hydraulic pressure in the aquifer. (Checking pump curve is very important, so don’t skip this step). We can help clients fit their pump and well properly.

Wolverine Drilling Inc.  is an experienced all-encompassing water well services company dedicated to working with you for any of your water well requirements.  We conduct business with a high level of transparency and look forward to hearing from you.  Contact us at 306-682-4647 or by email at

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