Earth Driller, Water Well

License required by 51 states

13th most burdensome licensing requirements.

3rd most widely and onerously licensed occupation.

Earth drillers operate a variety of drills, such as rotary, churn and pneumatic, to tap sub-surface water for the creation of water wells. This report looks at what is required to run one’s own business as an earth driller only.

All 50 states and D.C. require water well earth drillers to obtain licenses. On average, these laws require $356 in fees, over two years (837 days) of education and experience, and about two exams—the 13th most burdensome requirements of the 102 occupations studied here. And because water well earth drillers are also licensed everywhere, the occupation is the third most widely and onerously licensed.

License requirements vary widely across states. While 41 states require education or experience, the time required ranges from one to over six years. The number of required exams also varies widely, from zero in four states to five in Utah. Fees follow a similar pattern: Arizona and Nevada require over $1,000, but Illinois, Michigan and Nebraska require $50 or less.

States With Licenses

Burden Rank State States Licensed Fees Estimated Calendar Days Lost Education Experience Exams Minimum Grade Minimum Age
1 Nevada 51 $1,178 2190 6 years 3 0 18
2 Maryland 51 $750 2190 6 years 3 0 18
3 Virginia 51 $460 2203 56 clock hours 6 years 1 0 18
4 Arkansas 51 $750 1825 5 years 2 0 18
5 Connecticut 51 $371 1825 5 years 3 0 0
6 South Dakota 51 $200 1825 5 years 1 0 0
7 West Virginia 51 $565 1460 4 years 4 0 18
8 California 51 $579 1460 4 years 3 0 18
9 Hawaii 51 $615 1460 4 years 2 0 18
10 Minnesota 51 $325 1460 4 years 2 0 0
11 Maine 51 $268 1460 4 years 2 0 0
12 New Jersey 51 $350 1095 3 years 1 12 0
13 Arizona 51 $1,031 1095 3 years 3 0 18
14 Mississippi 51 $620 1095 3 years 4 0 21
15 Washington 51 $188 1265 32 Continuing Education Units 5400 clock hours 1 0 0
16 Vermont 51 $290 1095 3 years 3 0 0
17 Massachusetts 51 $275 1095 3 years 1 0 0
18 New Hampshire 51 $185 1095 3 years 1 0 0
19 Tennessee 51 $557 730 2 years 3 10 18
20 Michigan 51 $40 730 2 years 2 12 18
21 Utah 51 $350 730 2 years 5 0 21
22 South Carolina 51 $417 730 2 years 3 0 18
23 Colorado 51 $230 730 2 years 3 0 21
24 Georgia 51 $725 730 2 years 3 0 0
25 Louisiana 51 $470 730 2 years 2 0 18
26 New Mexico 51 $200 730 2 years 2 0 20
27 Kentucky 51 $315 730 2 years 1 0 18
28 Missouri 51 $90 730 2 years 2 0 18
29 Iowa 51 $450 730 2 years 2 0 0
30 Delaware 51 $180 730 2 years 1 0 18
31 Florida 51 $150 732 12 clock hours 2 years 1 0 18
32 Wisconsin 51 $100 731 6 clock hours 2 years 1 0 20
33 Oklahoma 51 $550 730 2 years 1 0 0
34 Illinois 51 $50 730 2 years 1 0 18
35 Alabama 51 $275 730 2 years 1 0 0
36 Texas 51 $267 730 2 years 1 0 0
37 Idaho 51 $260 730 2 years 1 0 0
38 North Carolina 51 $250 546 18 months 1 0 18
39 Oregon 51 $170 365 1 years 1 0 18
40 Montana 51 $375 365 1 years 1 0 0
41 North Dakota 51 $300 365 1 years 1 0 0
42 Wyoming 51 $440 0 3 0 18
43 Nebraska 51 $38 0 2 0 19
44 Indiana 51 $125 0 1 0 18
45 D C 51 $655 0 0 0 0
46 New York 51 $150 0 2 0 0
47 Rhode Island 51 $200 0 1 0 0
48 Kansas 51 $135 0 1 0 0
49 Alaska 51 $300 0 0 0 0
50 Ohio 51 $250 0 0 0 0
51 Pennsylvania 51 $88 0 0 0 0

JOIN THE FIGHT!   Sign up for newsletters:

JOIN THE FIGHT!