BWS is a young borehole water solutions business with experience developed over many years of working with boreholes and installations, with the owner also having extensive electronics and electrical experience.
Borehole Water Solutions is located on a small holding outside of the historical town of Cullinan, . We specialize in borehole yield testing and installations servicing residential, commercial and agricultural sectors throughout Gauteng.
BWS now also offer complete water solutions including counsel on water divining and borehole drilling, and besides the borehole yield testing and pump installations we also do water quality testing at an accredited laboratory, water storage solutions, water purification, booster and pressure pump installations and irrigation systems.
At BWS we strive for customer satisfaction, and we are open to all positive critism and would like your feedback
Let BWS be your Borehole Water Solutions provider, and let us assist you with your water requirements , call us today to guide you with a solution that would meet your requirements.
BWS will continue to strive to become your most reliable and most sought after water solutions provider in Gauteng.
Learn more about Boreholes!
The process of establishing a borehole.
Wanting to establish and put a borehole into production could become overwhelmed. The following is the recommended steps in the process of getting your own borehole:
3: The Driller;
4: Yield Tester;
5: Pump Design, Selection and Performance;
6: Pump Equipment Installation and Commissioning;
The first step in establishing a borehole.
Learn the borehole terminology
Get to know as much as you can about boreholes in order to be able to speak to and understand the service providers
Become knowledgeable in borehole terminology to communicate effectively with the service providers. Ultimately, you would like to get the optimum performance for the most reasonable price without disruption for your investment. A borehole becomes an asset that would last many years.
Bear in mind that a well-established borehole would add value to the property, and would certainly be high on the list of requirements when wanting to buy or sell property.
The internet is a great resource, as well as the different social media platforms, and there are usually many free magazines available that service providers advertise in.
Visit your nearest borehole equipment suppliers and get details and prices on borehole pumps, borehole motors, measurable cables, HDPE piping, water tanks and possible references to service providers.
Prepare a data sheet of all the borehole service providers in your area, and for each make a comparison of their services, standards, Terms and Conditions, references and costs.
Get to know your neighbors better and ask them the following questions:
- Do you have a borehole?
- How much does your borehole yield?
- Hoe deep is your borehole?
- Who did the Siting? Who drilled? Who tested? Who installed?
Leaving this step out, or too late, invariably causes one to be in a hurry, and that is when the errors and wasted expense come in.
Step two in establishing a borehole.
Find the right location to drill
Get help from a professional and do the borehole siting properly to reduce risk and prevent financial loss
Siting of Location!
Do the borehole siting as the borehole location is of utmost importance.
Without this step, you are bound to loose a lot of money.
Contact a geohydrologist to site the best location to drill the borehole. In an urban environment, factors such as power lines, pipelines and underground cables need to be considered as they have an effect on the instrument readings and the position of the hole.
Note that there is an SABS standard for siting a Borehole, SANS 10299-1:2003.
There are legal considerations to be undertaken, the owner must ensure the appropriate level of consideration on the environment for the effect that the water production borehole will have. Here one would need the services from a professional.
The owner should ensure that all legal requirements for a borehole are reviewed and complied with. This includes surface rights and subsurface rights in terms of the requirements of the National Water Act 36, of 1998.
Property plans should be studied to identify areas in which the drilling and operation of a borehole may not be possible.
- areas restricting access for the drilling rig and equipment;
- areas with restricted clearance for the drill rig mast;
- areas currently used or planned for services such as, power cables and pipe lines;
- areas with foundations and underground structures, and;
- areas restricting general installation and operation of pumping equipment.
The borehole must not be located within an area on the basis of potential environmental pollution threats, especially when located up-gradient of the planned borehole. These threats may include:
- contaminated storm water or surface runoff in close proximity to the borehole;
- waste fluids and materials facilities such as pit latrines, septic tanks, land-fills etc.
- agricultural activities such as stock kraals, dip tanks, drinking troughs and fertilizer storage;
- development of informal settlement or industry and underground fuel storage tanks.
A site suitability assessment would not only address the legal considerations, but should include:
- a study of existing and available geological, geophysical and groundwater information relevant to the planned borehole location;
- a study of maps and aerial photography of the planned site;
- a survey of existing boreholes in the area, this would help with typical depths of boreholes and yields in the proposed area of the borehole.
There is much to learn when it comes to the location of a planned borehole, this siting exercise would generally save you lots of money, and remember to plan in advance and not leave things till one is in a hurry. Remember a driller gets paid be meter of drilling, and takes no responsibility for the results.
Step three in establishing a Borehole.
Find the right drilling company
Drilling is very expensive so take the time to find the right drilling company that is there to look after you.
Get quotations, Terms & Conditions, references and availability from a number of borehole drilling service providers, at least three would be reasonable.
Would be good to learn if the driller works according to a standard. Note that there is an SABS standard for drilling a Borehole, SANS 10299-2:2003. Bear in mind that, a driller wants to drill, and the income is per meter, so in the event that a driller is hasty, and drills too fast, the drill bit could go off course, and miss the intended water bearing area, a very expensive fault that you will pay for.
The SABS Standard caters for the hole to be drilled correctly, that could save you a fortune from a careless borehole driller. There is a very huge demand to drill, and for that simple reason, the drillers have the upper hand to take the short cut, at the expense of the customer. There are a number of aspects to learn and consider.
Is the Driller’s equipment in good condition? What type of casing will be used? The type of ground formations that is being drilled would have a significant impact on this. Soft, sandy formations need to be screened to allow the water in but stop the sand/debris from getting into the borehole.
A careless driller could charge you for a standard screen or perforated product, but install a standard casing that has been modified with a grinder. Furthermore, there are standards used for filling the area between the perforated casing and the hole with gravel packs to prevent soil from entering the hole through the perforations, and loosing borehole depth from debris.
What will the diameter of the borehole be? A diameter of 152 mm (6 inches) complete is viewed as the standard for a domestic borehole. Larger diameter holes are considerably more costly and are the preserve of large irrigation, water supply and mine dewatering systems.
If you have obtained professional help in establishing the approximate depth at which a water bearing formation can be expected, you will need to communicate this to prospective drilling companies. Deep boreholes (+150m) can require larger machines that are not available to some contractors, or will not fit into your property.
Will the driller do borehole development? How will the driller improve water yield if necessary? Once the hole has been drilled to the final depth, it will need to be thoroughly flushed to remove all loose debris.
Here again, for the careless driller, flushing is not always done properly, and you could loose many meters of drilled hole that just gets closed up by the debris. In addition, the water bearing formation will need to be worked in a way that allows easy passage for the water to enter the borehole.
This process is called borehole development. If the driller does not understand the meaning of borehole development, get another driller.
You only have to pay if the driller drills to the depth specified in the contract (unless the driller finds water at a lesser depth and it is agreed, in writing, to stop drilling).
Will the driller be able to continue drilling through intersecting clay, unconsolidated sand or hard rock? Drilling through soft and hard formations requires certain skills and equipment. In addition, there could be additional costs incurred by the driller.
The agreement should take into account by stating, upfront, what additional charges are applicable if these difficult formations are encountered.
The driller should provide samples of material from each meter drilled. These samples are very useful to geohydrologists and to contractors who have years of experience. You can take a number of photos (a mobile phone camera is sufficient) of the sample mounds and save them as part of the records pertaining to the installation.
Is the provision of a driller’s log of the borehole included in the price? A driller’s log gives details of the construction of the borehole such as total depth, diameter(s) casing types, size(s) and length(s) and types of screens installed at specified depths.
Should the driller provide a turnkey service whereby, in addition to the drilling, the pump is selected, installed, and commissioned then an electrical clearance certificate, a yield test certificate, and a design Certificate containing pump details, and commissioning data must be provided. These documents are a definite advantage when the time comes to sell your property.
Does the driller have a standard contract? This is of vital importance to both parties. It’s always best to get it in writing! Is the driller a member of the ”Borehole Water Association”? Membership of the Association shows that the driller you are dealing with is committed to the long-term viability and professionalism of the industry and that the drilling company is part of a network of professionals that will ensure accountability.
The installation of a borehole requires a significant investment and therefore requires the involvement of companies and individuals who are skilled in providing all the necessary products and services.
Drilling the borehole will be the single most expensive step, and could cost you dearly if not done and monitored closely. Bear in mind that the drilling of boreholes in not controlled or regulated in any way in South Africa, and the customer is at the discretion of the driller. Many boreholes are not completed properly and works not concluded in a sound manner would cause the customer undue damage and losses.
Step four in establishing a Borehole
After the drilling of the borehole, one should have an indication of how much water to expect from your borehole. An experienced driller would have indicated the expected yield.
Borehole yield in brief is the amount of water that you are able to extract from your borehole, while the borehole replenishes the same amount of water without drawing down on a specific dynamic water level within the borehole.
Bear in mind that there is a Standard for this test in South Africa. Being SANS 10299-4:2003.
If the tester follows the Standard, one can check on the procedure and the documentation and recordings.
Measurements taken prior to the test commencement is the diameter of the casing and type of casing, the depth of the borehole and the level of the static water in the borehole.
Prior to the first test, it should be certain that the correct pump equipment is used for the test, that the discharge of water is as far from the borehole as necessary to prevent a water short circuit, and the correct depth of the pump inlet, in a hard-rock situation, set the pump inlet at or just above the main water strike, in a primary aquifer where the lower one-third of the aquifer is screened, set the inlet just above the top of the screen. Where no water strike information is available, set the pump between 3 and 5 meters from the bottom of the borehole.
There are a number of tests that could be carried out, the first test is the Step-Drawdown Test. It serves to evaluate borehole performance, that is, how much water can be pumped from the borehole, in order to check the hydraulic efficiency of the borehole and to determine the discharge rate needed for the constant discharge test.
The minimum requirement for the step-drawdown test is four steps, each of duration at least 1 hour, unless air suction is reached before 1 hour has lapsed. This test should take at least four hours, and then start the recovery test.
Start the pump and pump water from the borehole, ensuring the discharge is kept constant. So choose the discharge rates for each step that the first step is lower but the last step is higher than the expected borehole yield.
- Step 1: one third of the expected yield;
- Step 2: two thirds of the expected yield;
- Step 3: equal to the expected yield;
- Step 4: one-and-a-half times the expected yield,
Where the expected yield refers to the reported yield of an established borehole, the air lift yield of a new borehole or the hoped-for yield planned. The additional requirements when testing is measuring the discharge, and this can be measured using:
- a drum and a stopwatch; or
- a flow meter; or
- an orifice weir; or
- a V-notch weir.
Finally a water level measurement would need to be monitored and recorded during the discharge, and the following measurement equipment is recommended:
- and electrical dip tape; or
- a pressure transducer with a computer controlled system; or
- a mechanical automatic water level recorder.
The data is recorded as per the Standards Data Sheet format and minimum requirements.
For the second test, or Recovery test, this will start at the end of the step-drawdown test or the constant drawdown test or both, when the pump is switched off, immediately start collecting residual drawdown readings at the intervals given in the Standards Form until,
- The water level recovers to less than 5% of the total drawdown,
- At least three readings taken in succession are identical, or
- A time equal to the total time taken for the last test has elapsed.