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Water Well Resources

About 20 percent of the population in New Mexico (or estimated 400,000 people) receives their water from a private well. The following are guides from various state agencies and other organizations to support water well owners:

Make Sure Your Well Water is Safe to Drink

Bernalillo County Well Guide (424.0 KB)

EPA Well Guide (1.6 MB)

Well Definitions (244.5 KB)

How to Keep a Well Log (235.2 KB)

Well System Materials (313.0 KB)

Guide to Private Wells for Realtors (1.1 MB)

The Hydrologic Cycle Water moves by many processes, including precipitation, evaporation, runoff, infiltration, plant uptake, percolation, and transpiration.

Although the amount of water in certain places fluctuates, the hydrologic cycle provides a reliable supply of water by annually replenishing or recharging surface water and groundwater sources. Water levels will go down at times when evaporation, transpiration, and human needs exceed precipitation. However, that is offset when replenishment such as rain and snow exceed removal.

To provide a reliable water source for all of your family's needs investing in a properly designed well system with a supply tank for adequate storage during dry times is recommended. A professional water well contractor can help make sure you have the proper amount of water storage.

Floods, earthquakes and other disasters can damage or contaminate wells. Plugging or capping your well before a disaster can greatly reduce the potential for damage and contamination.

If your well has been contaminated or you suspect that it may be contaminated, do not drink the water. You need to properly disinfect or treat the water and have it tested before drinking/using the water. Drink clean water from another source (e.g. bottled water) until you are sure the water from your well is safe to drink again.

Drilled, driven or bored wells are best disinfected by a well or pump contractor, because it is difficult for the private owner to thoroughly disinfect these wells. Also working on a well after a natural disaster can be hazardous. Disasters can damage well piping and electrical systems. Unless you are highly skilled, electrical repairs are best conducted by a qualified electrician or well contractor.
If you have a private well, it is likely you also have a septic system. An estimated 20% of houses in the US are served by septic systems. Maintaining your septic system is associated with your well because it could impact your drinking water quality or water source if not well managed. Learn more about private wells and septic systems.

There are regulations for home liquid waste systems. You can learn about those and get tips from the New Mexico Environment Department's Liquid Waste Program.
How to Hire a Water Well Contractor (239.3 KB)

Learn how to find a reliable water well contractor:

Private Well Class

Private Well Class This free online course helps homeowners understand and care for their water well. Through ten weekly lessons and monthly webinar trainings, private well owners will learn the basics of managing and protecting their water source.

Sign Up!

Homeowners in small communities and rural areas without a public water supply often lack appropriate understanding of best practices for managing, operating, and protecting their private well. In this new nationwide technical assistance and training initiative, funded by the Rural Community Assistance Partnership (RCAP), through a grant from the US Environmental Protection Agency, a step-by-step education framework has been developed to assist well owners and other stakeholders in understanding groundwater hydrology, well fundamentals, well care best practices, and finding assistance locally. It will also help well owners understand how to sample their well, how to interpret sample results, and what they can do to protect their well and source water from contamination.
The NM EPHT website is supported by Cooperative Agreement Number, 6 NUE1EH001354 (previously, 5 U38EH000949), funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Its contents are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of CDC or do not necessarily reflect the official policies of the Department of Health and Human Services, nor does the mention of trade names, commercial practices, or organizations imply endorsement by the U.S. Government. The information published on this website may be reproduced without permission. Please use the following citation: " Retrieved Thu, 22 August 2019 9:40:55 from New Mexico EPHT Tracking Public Web site: ".

Content updated: Sat, 27 Apr 2019 13:55:07 MDT