Well Registration and Updates
State law requires all wells that withdraw water from the Edwards Aquifer to be registered with the EAA. Registration helps the EAA protect our shared water supply by identifying all points of withdrawal from the aquifer and allows us to properly address potential contamination risks.
Registration also protects the well owner in the unfortunate event of a contamination. Knowledge of a well’s location allows the EAA to effectively communicate important health and safety concerns to individuals who may not otherwise be aware of a possible danger.
To register your well, please submit a completed well registration form (PDF) to:
Edwards Aquifer Authority
Attention: Well Registration Program
900 E. Quincy
San Antonio, Texas 78215
If your well has already been registered by a previous property owner and well ownership has changed, please fill out an owner update form (PDF) so that we can make changes to our records at no cost to you.
To verify whether you have an Edwards Aquifer well, to report an abandoned well or if you have any questions, call the EAA Aquifer Protection Team at (210) 222-2204 or (800) 292-1047.
Exempt and Limited Production Wells
An exempt well is a well used at a home or on a ranch for domestic or livestock purposes that uses a small amount of groundwater in a given year.
Well owners who qualify under this category may make withdraws from the aquifer without the need for a groundwater withdrawal permit. For a well to be recognized as an exempt well, the owner must: (1) properly register his or her well; (2) demonstrate that the well is incapable of producing more than 25,000 gallons of water a day; (3) demonstrate that the well is used solely for domestic or livestock use; and (4) demonstrate that the well does not serve a subdivision requiring platting.
A well “serves a subdivision requiring platting” if it provides water to more than three homes located in a neighborhood or development where parcels were subdivided and recorded with a county.
Limited production wells is a specific category of historic wells that withdraw small amounts of water on an annual basis and are extremely limited in their ability to withdraw water from the aquifer.
Well owners who qualify under this category may make withdraws of up to 1.4 acre-feet of groundwater per year without an EAA groundwater withdrawal permit. To be recognized under this new category, a well owner must; (1) properly register his or her well; (2) have a registered meter on the well; (3) submit annual use reports at the end of each calendar year confirming that no more than 1.4 acre-feet of groundwater were used; and (4) pay a yearly $25 administration fee.
- If your well was drilled prior to June 1, 2013 and you use no more than 1.4 acre-feet of groundwater per year, it may qualify as a limited production well.
- If your well was previously denied exempt well status solely because the well was located within a subdivision requiring platting or on property that was subdivided after January 17, 2001, your well may now qualify as an exempt well.
If you have an existing groundwater withdrawal permit and qualify under one of these categories, you must take action to avoid aquifer management fees. Options include: (1) leasing your permit to the EAA for conservation purposes; (2) placing your permit into the EAA Groundwater Trust; (3) amending your permit and its purpose of use; and (4) transferring your permit (through a sale or lease) to a third party. EAA staff is available to provide additional information or to assist you in taking any of these actions.
Well Assessment Inspection
As part of our mission to protect our region’s primary water resource, the EAA routinely performs inspections of water wells within our jurisdiction that withdraw water from the Edwards Aquifer. Wells that are improperly constructed or maintained, neglected, abandoned or located near contamination sources pose a significant risk to the aquifer. Therefore, periodic inspections are recommended as a preventive measure.
EAA field representatives will make every effort to contact well owners and schedule an appointment to discuss and/or inspect a well. If you are an Edwards Aquifer well owner and you would like to schedule an inspection, please click here to request an appointment.
Well Protection Checklist
- Keep the area around your well free from foliage, debris, standing water and chemicals.
- Periodically check the well cover or cap on top of the casing to ensure it’s in good condition and is sealed.
- Don’t allow back-siphoning; make sure the well has a backflow preventer installed. When mixing pesticides, fertilizers or other chemicals, don’t put the hose inside the tank or container.
- Keep the top of your well at least one foot above the ground, with the ground sloping away for proper drainage.
- Be extra careful when working or mowing around your well. A damaged casing could jeopardize sanitary protection.
- Keep all your well records in a safe place.
- Be aware of changes in your well, the area around your well and the water it provides.
- Have unused or abandoned wells properly repaired or plugged by a certified water well contractor.