Bore construction

Where to put a bore

To work out where potential groundwater is at a bore site you should contact Water Resources for information on aquifers in the Northern Territory.

You should discuss the location of groundwater with nearby bore owners and a licensed driller. If bores near you are in the same geological and topographical setting, then you can expect a similar result.

Water Resources keeps information from licensed drillers for every bore.

To access this information go to the Department of Land Resource Management's water data portal or their NR Maps NT website.

Separation distance

You must have a separation distance of 100m from a bore to a traditional septic tank effluent trench, or it will need to be either:

  • a 50m separation distance for aerated wastewater treatment systems with unchlorinated effluent
  • or a 30m separation distance for aerated wastewater treatment systems where effluent is continually chlorinated.

You must have a separation distance of 100m from any of the following pollution sources:

  • fertiliser storage areas
  • chemical storage areas
  • fruit packing sheds
  • plant workshops
  • animal enclosures.


Consider all of the following when you are working out where to put your bore:

  • if you put the bore close to a power source this can save costs
  • don't put the bore within a firebreak
  • know where any underground services are on the property to avoid damage when drilling
  • if your property is in a flood prone area, drill the bore on higher ground so that you can access it year round.

Types of water pumps

The types of pumps to choose from include any of the following:

  • electric
  • solar
  • petrol
  • diesel
  • windmill.

If you are using a fuel-driven pump, you need to use bunding to protect water from fuel leaks.

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Last updated: 20 October 2016

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