Installation of a Private Water Well Guidelines​

A private water well may be drilled to use for a potable water supply, residential or farming irrigation, groundwater testing or geothermal climate control. All wells in Maryland must be drilled by a licensed Master Well Drillers and accompanied by an Application for Permit to Drill Well issued by the Anne Arundel County Department of Health.

Click here for a list of all Master Well Drillers licensed in the State of Maryland.

What steps must be taken to install and use a private water well?


Contact a master well driller. It will be the responsibility of the licensed well driller to submit the permit to drill a well. The Department of Health will review the permit information for:

  • Compliance with Anne Arundel County and Maryland State codes and regulations.
  • Verification of the license of the well driller.
  • Based on the area in Anne Arundel County​ or use of the well, special drilling or grouting conditions will be applied to the permit approval.


The well driller should notify the Department of Health, 410-222-7189, at least one day before the installation of the approved well.


After the potable well has been drilled, inspection of the well is made by the Department of Health. The well driller or homeowner requests sampling of the new well for potability. Water testing for bacteriological, chemical, arsenic, cadmium and physical analysis is available through Maryland state certified private laboratories or through the Anne Arundel County Department of Health. Water testing for radionuclide analysis is available only from the Anne Arundel County Department of Health. In order to certify a well as potable, one satisfactory chemical test, a radionuclide test if applicable, an arsenic test if applicable, a cadmium test if applicable and two consecutive bacteria tests must be passed.

Click here for a list of Maryland state certified laboratories.


The well driller submits a well completion report and, if applicable, a Well Abandonment Form.


Once all sampling is complete, the well is inspected and driller’s paperwork is submitted. After these are completed to the satisfaction of the Department of Health, a Certificate of Potability (CoP) is issued. Until a CoP is complete, a well or water supply may not be put into use or used for human consumption. If a building permit is associated with the installation of a new well, the Certificate of Occupancy will be delayed until the Certificate of Potability has been issued by the Department of Health.