Private Wells

Filling glass with water from faucet

Making sure your well is in a good location and you take care of it regularly reduces the chance that contaminants can make you sick. We issue Well Location Permits and offer water testing.

Well Location Permits

Before you build a well, you are required to get a well location permit. We make sure your well is properly setback from potential sources of contamination.

Call us at (608) 242-6515 for details about the permit and the process for building a well in Dane County.

You also need a well construction permit from the DNR. A licensed well professional usually handles this for the owner.    

Maintaining Your Well

General Maintenance

Well Water Testing Recommendations

  • Test your well water every year for contaminants including coliform, bacteria, and nitrates. You should also test if you notice any change in taste, odor or appearance, or after flooding.
  • It is very important to test for nitrate in households with pregnant people, infants, and young children. Nitrate can reduce the blood's ability to carry oxygen. In infants it can cause a serious condition called "blue baby syndrome."
  • PFAS are an emerging group of contaminants that have been found at high levels in some Dane County wells. You may want to test for these chemicals if other wells in your area have tested high, or there is a known source of PFAS contamination in the area.
  • Visit our Drinking Water Testing page for testing information or call our lab at (608) 243-0357. We can recommend other tests depending on your well's location, age, etc.

Abandoned Wells

Abandoned or unused wells can contaminate the aquifer. This can affect the safety and quality of ground water and drinking water. Financial help for well abandonment may be available from the WI Well Compensation grant program.


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