What Does a Water Well Driller Do?

A Water Well Driller (605B) operates various types of drilling equipment for the purpose of drilling and servicing water wells. A Water Well Driller is also required to perform the service and maintenance of drilling equipment, selecting and changing drilling tools, completing bore holes into a productive well, as well as disinfecting and servicing completed wells and pumping equipment.

Job Related Skills, Interests and Values

  • completing well records and reports clearly, concisely and on schedule
  • using correct safety procedures in the construction and operation of water wells
  • becoming knowledgeable about geological formations in order to locate water sources that are clean and safe for drinking
  • servicing and maintaining drilling equipment
  • using drilling and boring tools safely to drill wells
  • communicating effectively with co-workers and other contractors and supervisors
  • providing customer service by the locating and cost estimating of construction of new wells or restoration of existing ones

Additional information on training standards for this particular trade in the Industrial sector may be found on the Ontario College of Trades (OCOT) website at: http://www.collegeoftrades.ca/trades/training-standards1/industrial

What Preparation and Training Do You Need?

To become a Water Well Driller, you should complete your Grade 12 education or ministry-approved equivalent (GED) with credits in math, science and communication. Students who have not yet completed high school but are 16 years of age and completed grade 10 can apply to the Ontario Youth Apprenticeship Program (OYAP) and gain work hours towards their overall apprenticeship.

Water Well Driller is a Voluntary certified trade and does not require a Certificate of Apprenticeship. However, completing an apprenticeship program will increase your wages and employment opportunities. To become a Water Well Driller, it is recommended that you complete apprenticeship training of 5000 hours of combined in-class and on-the-job training. The in-school component is comprised of two 8-week blocks or 2 days per month over your apprenticeship training period for a total of 480 hours. You must also be willing to keep up to date with new skills and technology in the field. This is the minimum to be apprenticed in this trade under the (OCTAA) Ontario College of Trades Apprenticeship Act (2009). Please note that minimum entry requirements to this and other trades are currently under review by the Ontario College of Trades.

What’s Your Future as a Water Well Driller?

Water Well Drillers work primarily outdoors, and often travel to remote sites. Therefore work hours can be unpredictable, as often you are required to stay on the job until the project is complete. A Water Well Driller is employed by:

  • Residential building developers
  • Building construction firms
  • Construction site maintenance firms

The drilling of new wells is closely tied to the construction industry and is effected by the number of construction starts in the region. The predicted increase of work in the construction industry will positively affect this trade.

Wage Rate

  • As an Apprentice you earn less than a Journeyperson
  • this rate increases gradually as you acquire skills and gain competency
  • Fully qualified  Water Well Drillers can earn in a range of $20.00/ hour or more, excluding overtime. 

Ask Yourself: Is Working as a Water Well Driller for You?



Do you enjoy working outdoors in extreme heat or in the cold?

Yes      No

Are you able to do a lot of bending, stooping, kneeling or heavy lifting?

Yes      No

Do you enjoy working with tools, equipment and machinery?

Yes      No

Do you like to get the job done safely and just right?

Yes      No

Do you have the physical stamina to do strenuous demanding physical work?

Yes      No

Do you mind being exposed to heavy levels of noise and dirt?

Yes      No

Are you willing to travel and live away from home to complete a project?

Yes      No


If you answered Yes to most of these questions, a career as a Water Well Driller may be for you!

You may also want to explore other careers that require similar interests and skills, such as:

  • Oil & Gas Well Drillers
  • Heavy Equipment Operator
  • Carpenter
  • Boilermaker
  • Plumber

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