Understanding Water Wells In Needham MA

Home Inspector with Northeast Water Wells Inc NH Lic# 59,60 and MA 762


Are you thinking of installing a water well in Needham, MA. This article is geared towards understanding Needham MA Board of Health Regulations. Understanding your town regulations can be instrumental in compiling total project costs when it comes to drilling a water well in Needham, MA.

 1. Permit Info:  Well construction permit fee: $135.00

2. Well Location: An engineered plot plan is required when application is submitted.  Guidelines include

(Separation distance in linear feet)


Well Head

Property Line


Public/Private Roadways


Subsurface Drain


Septic Tank


Leaching Field


Underground Storage Tank                                



3. Water Quality testing: Extensive water analysis is required.  This test includes

Total Coliform Bacteria         Sodium                       Hardness       Arsenic (Total)

E-Coli Bacteria           Alkalinity                       Nitrate                  Lead

Calcium                                   Ammonia                       Nitrite                   Potassium

Copper                                               Chloride                        pH                       Flouride

Iron                                         Chlorine                        Sulfate                 Radon

Magnesium                              Color                            Turbidity                Flouride

Manganese                             Conductivity                   Odor/Sediment     P-dichlorobenzene

Radontetrachlorethylene            Carbon Tetrachloride    Trichloroethane    Cis-1

Dichloroethylene                      Toluene             Dichloroethylene            Ethylbenzene                         Monochlorobenzene

4. Water Quantity testing: A four hour flow test will be sufficient. Flow tests should be conducted in the following manner.

In order to demonstrate the capacity of the well to provide the Required Volume of water, a pumping test shall be conducted in the following manner:

A.) The volume of water necessary to support the household’s daily needs shall be determined using the following equation: (number of bedrooms plus one bedroom) x (110 gallons per bedroom) x (a safety factor of 2) = number of gallons needed daily

B.) The storage capacity of the well shall be determined using the measured static water level

and the depth and radius of the drill hole or casing

C.) The required volume shall be calculated by adding the volumes of water in 1.) and 2.). It is this volume of water that must be pumped from the well within a 24-hour period.

 Example 1: a one bedroom house with a well six (6) inches in diameter and contains 200 ft. of standing water:

1)  I bedroom + I bedroom = (2 bedrooms) x (I10 gallons per bedroom) x (safety factor of 2) = 440 gallons needed daily.

2.     the volume of a 6-inch well is 1.5 gallons for every foot of water column length. Therefore, (200 ft. of standing water) x (I. 5 gal/ft.) = 300 gallons.

  1. 440 gallons + 300 gallons = 740 gallons that must be pumped from the well in 24 hours or less to demonstrate suitable capacity.  Recovery up to 85% of the static water level must also occur within 24 hours after cessation of pumping.

5. Real Estate Transfer Requirements:  As of now, Needham, MA does not have any real estate transfer requirements posted. However we strongly suggest getting the water quality and quantity tested to show you are getting a clean, safe, and usable well.

 Wells on average in the Town of Needham MA range from 300-400 in depth however it’s not uncommon for wells to run shallower or deeper hence why it’s called the average. The casing depth averages at 40 feet however deeper pockets of rock are possible.

 If you have further questions contact the Needham Board Of Health at 781-455-7500 ext 511


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