Private Well Program

Photo of drilled well with word tree

If you have a  question about a specific well, well site, permit, or project…

Your Local Health Department is the PLACE YOU SHOULD START.

Click the button to the right to find your local office.

 Find your Local Health Department

Buying or selling a house with a private well?

Learn even more in our FAQS for Real Estate

Be Well Informed Virginia LogoDo you have well water test results? Click on the above image to understand what they mean







Map of number of people served by private wells in virginia

Map of percent population served by private wells by county in Virginia
Maps developed by Jessica Slagle, Virginia Tech. Provided courtesy of




Obtain a Well Construction Permit Read the private well regulations learn about wells
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I am concerned about my well water quality logo

People who obtain their drinking water from private wells and use onsite sewage treatment systems for their waste water disposal rely on truly local resources.  Typically this results in great water; however, unlike public water supply system users, well owners rely on water that is not required by regulation to be tested regularly for contaminants and other water quality parameters.

Virginia’s Private Well Regulations include requirements for the disinfection and bacteriological testing when the well is installed.  From that point in time forward, the well owner has the responsibility to ensure that the water supply remains safe.

And it can be mighty confusing.

We’ve developed the “It’s YOUR Health” information program to help private system owners with the educational, emergency, and service provider information needed to safeguard wells and septic systems so that they remain protective of human health and the environment.  Because it’s YOUR health!



water testing risk management protecting my well after an emergency
I have a question about something not addressed here


National Groundwater Association

  • NGWA is a community of groundwater professionals working together to advance groundwater knowledge and the success of our members through education and outreach; advocacy; cooperation and information exchange; and enhancement of professional practices.

Virginia Household Water Quality Program

  • The Virginia Household Water Quality Program provides practical information to homeowners about maintaining and protecting private water systems such as wells, spring and cisterns.

  • is your one-stop resource for information relating to private water well systems and ground water. Throughout, the importance of regular well maintenance and water testing is demonstrated again and again. After all, your water well system is a direct link to an underground water reserve and the responsibility is yours to protect this valuable natural resource, as well as safeguarding your family’s health. The investment in proper testing and maintenance is more than worth it!

Center for Disease Control and Prevention 

  • A wide variety of videos, posters, tools, and promotional materials from CDC’s Safe Water for Community Health (Safe-WATCH) program to reduce exposures from private wells

Water Systems Council Hotline

  • Water Systems Council (WSC) is the only national, nonprofit organization solely focused on household wells and small water well systems. WSC is committed to ensuring that Americans who get their water from household, private wells have safe, affordable drinking water and to protecting groundwater resources.

Virginia Department of Environmental Quality – Groundwater Characterization

  • The organizational objective of the Ground Water Characterization Program is to protect Virginia’s environment and promote the health and well being of its citizens by collecting, evaluating, and interpreting technical information necessary to manage ground water resources of the Commonwealth. The GWCP staff works to assure that necessary information is available to support resource management decisions, water supply planning activities, assess ground water availability, facilitate drought monitoring, and support the expansion or creation of ground water management areas.