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Understanding Deep Residential Water Well Plumbing

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One reality of living on a property with a deep water table is that you can expect higher costs to drill, outfit, and maintain a water well. 

To help you better understand the needs of a deep well, here is some information on how they function and their piping requirements:

Well Plumbing Basics

Your well will have two different types of pipes:

  1. casing pipe
  2. down pipe

The casing pipe you have installed can be made of stainless steel or a thermoplastic material, such as:

  • acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene (ABS)
  • polyvinyl-chloride (PVC)
  • styrene rubber (SR)

Your local building codes may limit your choices of the above materials. Additionally, the depth of your well will determine the thickness required for your well's casing pipe to protect the structural integrity of your well shaft.

Down Pipe

The down pipe in your deep well will be made of either PVC, stainless steel or galvanized steel. PVC is a good option if your well is not excessively deep. There are some PVC pipes on the market today which can be legally used for a couple hundred feet of well piping.

For very deep wells, you need to use a steel pipe. The main difference between galvanized steel and stainless steel is that stainless is a more refined metal that is resistant to damage from water. However, stainless steel is not cheap and can add a significant cost to your well drilling project.

Galvanized steel is the most common down pipe used in wells. The advantage is that it is cheaper than stainless steel and is much stronger than PVC pipe. The main disadvantage of galvanized pipe is that water can cause it to corrode and need replacement.

Additional Plumbing Needs

Deep wells often have issues with low water production, because lower aquifers do not have as much readily accessible water. Once your well has been drilled, it will be tested to see how much water it produces. If the well does not produce adequate water flow for your home, then you will need to have a holding tank and pressure pump installed. This will allow your well to fill your tank at its limited production level and to provide your home with good water pressure at all times.


While your well's plumbing is something you never want to stress over, it is important you have the right pipe installed that meets the needs of your family and complies with the local building codes. Since building codes and plumbing material requirements vary from state to state, you should contact a licensed plumber in your area to discuss your property's deep well options. Contact a company like C B Lucas Heating & Air Conditioning for more information.