Tips for selecting a reliable water well drill that fits your application
Water well drilling isn’t light work. It can take a contractor to the most remote locations on earth. When a drill breaks down far from a commercial airport or shipping facility, the last thing crew members will be thinking about is how much they saved by choosing a lower quality drill. Experienced drill manufacturers have been in this position themselves and don’t take their equipment lightly. Neither should you.
Choosing a water well drill includes many factors that stem far beyond the initial price. The location to be drilled, quality of the equipment and customer support are all considerations that impact everything from the drill model you choose to the company you buy it from.
Tough applications and remote locations demand a drill that’s suitable for the terrain and soil conditions at the drill site. Selecting the right drill should be a top priority to keep future costs low and headaches to a minimum.
Mechanical drills are lightweight, portable and have less complex parts than hydraulic drills, making them an ideal choice for accessing hard-to-reach sites. These drills, such as Lone Star Drills’ LS100 and LS200, are suited for drilling through sand, silt and loam at depths of 100 to 200 feet.
As convenient and simple as they seem, mechanical drills are not always the answer. Hydraulic drills provide more power to get through frozen layers, tough clay and hard rock formations, reaching depths of 300 to 400 feet. Plus, they can be broken down, palletized or shipped in a container, making these powerful drills highly portable for use in hard-to-reach areas. In this category, offerings from Lone Star Drills like the LS200H and LS300H are capable of consistently tackling those tough drilling situations while remaining easy to transport. For even greater performance, the upgraded LS200H+ and LS300H+ offer a more robust engine and hydraulic system along with a reinforced frame, heavy duty swivel and an anchoring option.
If the location allows for it, trailer mounted hydraulic drills offer unparalleled performance. The drills have the ability to access depths up to 400 feet while also offering the convenience and reliability of a dedicated trailer. Single and double axle options like Lone Star Drills’ LST1, LST1+, LS300T+ and LS400T+ provide the highest psi hydraulic systems with model specific packages and performance specs aimed at varying levels of drilling difficulty. The most robust options, such as the LS400T+, feature a 3,000-psi hydraulic system providing 9,000 pounds of push-down force and 15,000 pounds of pull-back force.
Even with these impressive specs, a drill’s utility would be fleeting without quality construction to back it up.
Traveling to a water well drill site demands thorough preparation, but surprises will undoubtedly arise and leave contractors to rely on the quality of their drill’s construction to see them through.
Drill quality is often reflected in a higher initial price, but the benefits of investing in a higher quality drill up front will be immediately noticed in build and performance during demanding applications and felt in financial savings and reliability for years to come.
Take a look at the frame. Heavy duty welded steel frames should be a consistent product feature across all models a company offers. Knowing that a drill manufacturer cares about the reputation of its economically priced products as much as its top-of-the-line machines provides assurance that they do not take drilling lightly. Lone Star Drills offers welded steel frames on every model and reinforced table bases on the more robust drills, starting at the LS200H+.
Additionally, pay attention to drills with thicker drill pipes. These offer extended life and peace of mind. 2-inch pipes should be standard on heavy duty applications.
A quality drill should also include easy maintenance such as conveniently accessed greasing and adjustment points. And when maintenance isn’t enough, abundant customer support should be just a phone call or email away.
Whether it’s responding to questions or rushing a customer’s part to the airport, a drill is only as good as those dedicated individuals supporting it. A reputable manufacturer should provide training manuals and videos, 24/7 technical support and a strong backing of satisfied customers. Some companies, like Lone Star Drills, even go as far as hosting training sessions at their facility to ensure users get the most out of their new drill. Additionally, be sure a thorough manufacturer’s warranty accompanies any drill being considered.
Water can’t wait. This means your drill can’t either. From initial setup to replacing parts, a water well drill needs to be ready at a moment’s notice with spare parts and customer support never far behind. The weight given to an initial low price tag may become less appealing once you consider other factors.