Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some of the most common questions we get asked.

Please do contact if you cannot find the answer to your question on this page.

What is a borehole?

A borehole is the generalized term for any narrow shaft bored in the ground, either vertically or horizontally. A borehole may be constructed for many different purposes, including the extraction of water or other liquid.

For ease of reference, the information that have provided below will be applicable to boreholes for water supply.

How much does a borehole cost?

There are several factors which can affect the cost of a borehole installation. These include: underlying hydrogeology, amount of water required, location, the type of pump required, depth of borehole, distances from the nearest power supply and the distance and head to the final destination of the water.

However, a budget figure for the siting, drilling and testing of a borehole prior to any equipment installation will be about R40 000.00 – R60 000.00 + Vat

Contact us should you require an obligation free budget quotation for your particular requirements.

Do I need a borehole?

If you cannot connect to mains water, the answer is obvious.
But many people with access to the main prefer to use water that has not been processed for public supply. Water from your own borehole is not treated with chemicals. So there is no added fluoride or chlorine.

In fact, most of the bottled water available from the shops comes from boreholes.
Many water bottling companies used drilled boreholes for their water, so it would be no surprise if you have already drunk water from a water borehole/water well.

How long does it take to drill a borehole?

The length of time required to drill a borehole depends on the required depth of the borehole as well as the underlying geology of the site.

A general guideline is 1 to 2 days for the completion of the drilling process.

Where can I drill a borehole?

As long as there is sufficient space on your site or property and sufficient access for the drill rig, you can just about drill anywhere. Naturally, this site/s will be influenced by the geohydrologist siting prior to drilling.

There are also practical decisions to be made in connection with this, e.g. where do you want the water, where can the above ground pumping infrastructure be housed, where is power available, are there any potential sources of contamination of the borehole? etc.

Is drilling messy?

Yes! In drilling a borehole, material removed has to find its way to the surface. In most situations we initially drill ‘dry’, and this produces dust. When water is found, slurry emerges from the hole. Whilst drilling the crew do try to minimise the inconvenience that is caused by communicating with the client regarding the potential problems .

How far apart should boreholes be?

During pumping a borehole pump produces a ‘cone of depression’. This is the influence zone of where water is being abstracted. Where possible any new borehole should be outside this zone to ensure that one borehole does not affect another.

We recommend that anyone who wishes to site a borehole get a Geohydrologist to have a close look at the site for further evaluation.

How far away from a septic tank does a borehole have to be?

Where possible boreholes should always be a minimum of 50m away from any potential source of contamination such as septic tanks.

On some sites this just isn’t possible but as long as the septic tank or other source of contamination is modern and well maintained and the borehole has been constructed properly with sufficient casing then it should be ok.

How much electricity does a borehole pump use?

This depends on the scale of the submersible pump installed but typically a small pump for normal use, e.g. less than 20m3/day abstraction will be very cheap to run.

How safe is borehole water for drinking?

Usually borehole water is perfectly safe to drink. However we always recommend carrying out a water quality analysis prior to use of the water to fully understand the contents of the water- Suitable filtration can be installed pending the results of the analysis.

How deep should a borehole be?

There is no set answer for how deep a borehole needs to be. Put simply the borehole should be as deep as is required to reach the aquifer (water bearing rock).

The average depth of a borehole is between 80m and 120m but this can be less as well as significantly more. The depth of a borehole will vary depending on the region in South Africa that it is being drilled and the underlying geology.

Is the quality and quantity of water guaranteed?

There is always an inherent risk and in managing this risk the cornerstone is always to obtain as much information as possible prior to committing to a drilling programme, hence why we always recommend that a suitable borehole siting be obtained. Whilst this is not a guarantee of success, it can highlight risk at an early stage and allow an informed decision to be made.

For commercial requirements where very high volumes are required, it may be necessary to drill a test borehole to assess performance. The rate at which water can be abstracted is governed by the subterranean aquifer system (an ‘aquifer’ is a deposit of rock containing water that can supply wells).
There is always an element of risk that there is no water to be found, and this needs to be understood and managed.

How to filter borehole water?

The first step is to get your water analysis done; We work closely with a leading laboratory that can check your water for substances such as iron, manganese, calcium and other minerals and contaminants like bacteria, etc.

If your water has failed quality tests for the required usage, we will specify a filtration system that will be suitable to remedy this problem.

What is artesian water?

Artesian water is water that comes out of the ground under its own pressure. No pumping systems are required. This is to do with impermeable rocks and underground pressures.

How do you abstract water from a borehole?

In some cases water may be extracted from the ground under its own pressure (artesian), However in most cases a submersible pump is required to bring water to the surface. The size and specifications of the pump required depends on various factors, such as the quantities of water required, the desired pressure and its intended use.

To get the most from your borehole a pumping system should be specifically and carefully designed to suit the client’s exact requirements.

How long will a borehole last?

A well-constructed borehole can last many generations. Modern technology has also meant that newly constructed boreholes can last even longer due to advancements in borehole lining material and drilling techniques to prevent the borehole from collapsing.

Correct utilization will also enhance the lifespan of the borehole, whilst poor management will significantly lower the lifespan.

I have found an old borehole / water well on my property, can I use it?

In many cases yes, the old borehole will need to be assessed and if it is still producing water than it can be brought back into commission. It may require maintenance works and a cleaning process to re-develop the borehole yield.

We recommend that a yield test be carried out on this type of borehole to establish what the sustainable yield is prior to any further infrastructure development.

What does a borehole look like?

Prior to equipment installation the borehole will appear as a steel pipe (casing) which has been capped off and is protruding vertically out of the ground typically 100mm to 1000mm above ground level.

How wide should a borehole be?

The typical borehole casing diameter is 150mm (6.5inch), but there are older boreholes with a 100mm (5inch) casing.

Larger production boreholes will have a 200- 250mm (8-10 inch) casing to allow the installation of greater diameter pumps, thus allowing greater abstraction.

How do boreholes reduce cost/ save money?

By tapping into borehole water you essentially remove your dependency on mains water. Borehole water is much cheaper than mains water especially when connected to a renewable power source (e.g. solar or wind generator) and although there is the up-front cost of drilling the borehole, the long term investment value can be beneficial.

Savings can also be felt from a health perspective, in that the quality of water produced from a borehole in many cases is significantly healthier for you than the mains supply with far less chemical intervention.

How can a find out if my property is suitable for a borehole?

Most properties can benefit from groundwater but as this is Mother Nature there is no guarantee.

Getting a geohydrologist to carry out a desk top study of the region, and possibly visit the site would be the best means to establish the suitability for the property for a borehole.

We would be happy to assist in this regard.

How reliable are boreholes?

With the correct equipment installed in the borehole, and proper management of the water source, boreholes have proven very reliable for sectors ranging from farming, industry and of course domestic use.

Quality equipment does need to be specially selected to ensure that this is the case- We have a combined experience of over 35 years in the industry.

How long does it take to get a water supply?

The steps for a borehole are: The siting – Carried out by a qualified Geohydrologist will normally be completed within 7-10 working days.

The drilling- Depending on the rig availability, this can take anything from 1-4 weeks from the completion of the siting.

The borehole yield test- depending on the requirements of the borehole will normally be completed within 7-10 working days from the drilling.

Water quality analysis and reporting- This is normally completed within 2-3 weeks of the completion of the borehole yield test.

Equipment specification and installation- This will normally take between 1-3 weeks after the completion of the reporting.

Are our installations guaranteed?

All materials that we use have a manufacturer’s warranty of 1 year.

All materials are guaranteed against poor faulty workmanship for a period of 1 year from installation date.

For further details on the warranty Terms, please request an obligation free copy of or Terms and conditions of Sale from any of out members.