Are you having a water bore drilled?
 Australian Drilling Industry Association (ADIA) often receives phone calls from members of the public asking how to find out if a bore will yield ‘good’ quality and volume of water. This is a reasonable question given water bore drilling isn’t a cheap exercise. However, please keep in mind that no one, despite the best of intentions, can guarantee the quantity or quality of water from a bore.

We can suggest a couple of ways to make an informed decision. Some water authorities or councils have hydrogeological services that offer a site assessment for a modest fee.

Local drillers with several years’ experience drilling in particular areas can be an invaluable source of information on the performance of bores that have already been drilled near your property.

However, even the most competent and experienced hydrogeologist or driller won’t have all of the necessary information at their fingertips.

Ultimately, the landowner needs to decide if there is enough evidence to proceed with drilling a bore.

The information on this page is not intended as a substitute for professional advice or assessment. We recommend that you find a qualified professional to visit your property to discuss your needs and provide assistance.

ADIA has published two booklets that provide more detail about the process of having a water bore drilled from the research and planning stages to drilling and bore testing. For just $11.00, consumers and drillers can purchase Code Of Good Practice For The Groundwater Industry at our online store.

Consumer checklist:

  • Decide on the bore location depending on proximity to buildings, other bores and sewage disposal systems
  • Optional: site inspection from a hydrogeologist (at your cost)
  • Obtain a water bore construction licence or permit (refer below for your local authority)
  • Search ADIA’s extensive database for a drilling contractor near you
  • Contact at least three companies for written quotes
  • Driller site inspection before quote (may incur a small fee)
  • Ask to see the driller’s licence before drilling starts
  • Ask your driller for a written customer contract which both parties sign

Groundwater management, permits and driller licences are governed by individual state and territory governments. Groundwater protection is taken seriously by all levels of government and the Australian drilling industry alike. Both customers and drilling contractors are responsible for understanding and complying with  the regulators in their state or territory. Please refer to the below contact details for your local groundwater authority.

Western Australia
Department of Water
Phone: 08 6364 7600

Department of Natural Resources and Mines
28 Peters Street, Mareeba, QLD 4880
PO Box 156 Mareeba, QLD 4880
Phone: 13 74 68

New South Wales
Department of Primary Industries
Locked Bag 5123, Parramatta, NSW 2124
Phone: 1800 353 104
Email: ua.vog.wsn.ipdnull@seiriuqne.retaw

Northern Territory
Department of Land Resource Management

3rd Floor, Goyder Building, Palmerston
PO Box 496, Palmerston NT 0831
Phone: 08 8999 3632

Phone: 08 8973 8831

Alice Springs
Phone: 08 8951 9215

South Australia
Department of Water, Environment and Natural Resources
GPO Box 1047, Adelaide, SA 5001
Phone: 08 8204 1910

Southern Rural Water
88 Johnstone Street, Maffra, Vic 3860
PO Box 153, Maffra, VIC 3860
Phone: 1300 139 510
All correspondence, including Bore Construction Licence applications and Bore Completion Reports, should be sent to the Maffra office.

Department of Parks, Primary Industries, Water and Environment
1 Franklin Wharf Hobart
GPO Box 44, Hobart, TAS 7001
Phone: 03 6165 3019
Email: ua.vog.sat.ewpipdnull@skcirneH.annA

Australian Capital Territory
Department of the Environment, Climate Change, Energy and Water
Contact: Water Regulation
Phone: 132 281 (Canberra Connect)